Monday, December 31, 2007

2002 called and it wants its rhetoric back

The public radio listeners among you will know that Minnesota Public Radio is outfit that puts out shows like A Prairie Home Companion and Marketplace, both of which embody a certain admirable strain of levelheaded Midwestern horse sense. What you probably didn't know is that MPR has a baseball blog too. Unfortunately, Garrison Keillor must have used up all of the horse sense budget this year, because the baseball blog hasn't a friggin' clue:

Johan Santana is still a Twin – for now. The Big Market Teams (BMT) are low-balling the Twins with offers that won’t include another star player (like Jose Reyes or Robinson Cano) or two-top shelf prospects (like Jacoby Ellsbury and Jon Lester). This is a travesty.

Imagine if this were a small-market NFL team – say the Indianapolis Colts – and they were shopping their superstar player, Peyton Mannning. Never happen, right? But if it did, you can bet it wouldn’t be just the New York and Boston teams in the bidding. With a salary cap and meaningful revenue sharing, just about every NFL team could find a place for Manning on its roster, but yet the Twins have a precious few suitors for Santana. As a result, they will get just pennies-on-the-dollar in return.

I suppose this guy and I can argue about whether some unfair dominance by the so-called "BMTs" (BMTs?) is forcing the Twins to shop Santana. It ain't, but like I said, I'd argue the point. It sure as hell isn't a "travesty," however, that the Yankees and Red Sox aren't willing to give up multiple young, valuable players whose near future they control in exchange for a pitcher who is one season away from perhaps the second largest free agent contract in baseball history.

I love the Manning example too. Of course football teams would make a Manning deal happen. That's because in the NFL contracts only entail obligations if you're a player. If you're a team, you can tear them up with near impunity if a better offer comes along. In baseball, teams have to live with their bad decisions.

Which, by the way, is exactly why the Red Sox and Yankees aren't willing to mortgage their futures for a single player.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Let's not forget that Twins owner Carl Pohlad is one of the richest owners in baseball in terms of his personal wealth. If he wanted to step up to the plate to keep Santana he could.