Monday, October 30, 2006

Take a pencil, sharpen it...

Roll this around in your mind for a minute or several: the words Molina, Rogers, Suppan and Weaver were all, at one point this past week or so, placed in the same sentence as the phrase "postseason hero." And nobody who said it was joking. If you're not upset about this, you haven't been paying attention. DAMNIT, how does that HAPPEN? The Cardinals limped into the postseason riding nothing but 7 losses in 10 games and a freaking WISH and they win the world series.

That's why I think that this was the best postseason I've ever seen, though, because of how unpredictable it was. Unfortunately the TV ratings didn't seem to impart that it was all that good. Oh well. I still watched it.

Congratulations to the Cardnials. Tony LaRussa looks like Pete Rose. Literally. Yes, we all looked foolish in our picks. So did every expert, even when there were only two teams from which to pick. Moving on...

The 2006 season is over, and now Hot Stove discussion can commence.

I think that CBS columnist Gregg Doyel is very nearly correct in this article that the new collective bargaining agreement is detrimental to many small-market MLB teams, I think that it does have perks that will make this offseason interesting.

Most notable among these is the dissolving of the free agent signing deadline. Remember last year when Clemens was in the news so damn much after the deadline for him to re-sign with the Astros passed? Yeah, that's not happening anymore. Even if the Alfonso Soriano's and Jason Schmidt's of the world want to hold out for offers from other teams as long as they want, they don't have to worry about the lease on their current apartment. They can re-sign with their former team at any point, even if they don't accept arbitration.

This should make for some good, late-spring surprises I think. Basically, it means that players can just wait and see where the best offer comes from for as long as they want.

Another new aspect of the agreement does not have a direct impact on most of the Major League clubs directly, but will certainly help in streamlining the draft and the incorporation of new players into the A-AAA levels. Until at least 2011, players selected in the June amateur draft who aren't college seniors must sign by Aug. 15. This will reduce players holding out for more money or a better placement with threats to go to college or elsewhere, since they must sign before school starts anyhow.

Maybe later, in a week or so, there will be a fuller picture of just how the market for free agents will shape up for the winter.

Only 107 more days until pitchers and catchers... Moyer and Hamels part II are the first to report, on Valentines Day none the less. Must be a sign.

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