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Quick Thoughts: Jeter, V-Mart, Trade Targets, Tulo

December 1, 2010

Writing has been a bit sparse lately, much to my own disappointment. Between the holidays and some other obligations currently taking up much of my time I haven’t had much of a chance to get my thoughts down on a number of items that have taken place. So let’s take a look at a few of them with some quick thoughts:

  • I’ve been contemplating writing something much bigger than a few lines about this whole Derek Jeter situation but time hasn’t allowed me to get it down on paper (or more accurately, I haven’t found the time to type it up – who writes on paper nowadays?). The entire thing is far too complex to get my thoughts on it out in just a few lines. Ultimately the two sides both need to compromise. The Yankees need to realize that this is The Captain, the face of the franchise, and the biggest Yankee since Mickey Mantle (sorry Don Mattingly, but Jeter topped you). Jeter needs to realize he’s 37 and coming off his worst season. And George isn’t running the show anymore. Both sides need to make some concessions and ultimately I believe they will get a deal done.
  • One last thought on the matter, if George were still with us this deal would have already been completed. He never would have allowed the situation to get like this.
  • Boston has been criticized a great deal for letting Victor Martinez get away. However, their concerns over his ability to remain behind the plate for the life of a four-year contract is a justifiable one. I don’t think he’ll be able to either. Sure, they’ll miss his bat in the lineup but they used some restraint in their negotiations and it was the right decision.
  • I don’t agree with Arizona’s thought process about trading Justin Upton. I agree he would bring in a great package that would help rebuilding that team. I just don’t feel the team needs a total overhaul like others seem to think. There is potential there, there just needs to be strong leadership to bring it all together. I believe Kevin Towers and Kirk Gibson could be the right pair to do that, given the time to do so.
  • Zack Greinke will be traded sometime in December. He’ll be the top target of whatever team doesn’t land Cliff Lee. In other words, he’ll be dealt to Texas.
  • I still believe Prince Fielder will be dealt this winter as well.
  • Good for Colorado for locking up Troy Tulowitski. And good for him for getting the dollars he will be getting. I would have waiting another year or two before looking at an extension but by the same token, if he has another solid year or two then the price goes up.
  • I find it interesting, however, that more teams don’t front-load these long contracts rather than having the salaries go up each year as the player gets older. Ultimately it could give both the player and team more flexibility later in the deal if things were arranged differently. Let’s say, hypothetically, that he gets hurt sometime during the contract and when he gets healthy he’s been replaced by a younger player. But he still has three years on the deal. With a back-loaded contract the team has no wiggle room and Tulo’s getting paid too much to be willing to compromise. With a front-loaded deal the team has flexibility. And so would Tulo. The team could more easily move him to another position, or even another team with reasonable dollars owed over that last few years. I don’t see why more any players don’t take the money upfront, settle for less dollars when they’ll ultimately be older and less productive, and work out a no-trade protection into those final seasons that would allow them some limited control over where they end up. Doesn’t seem that farfetched does it?
  • Can I just say how surprised I am at the dollars that Florida has been spending after dumping Dan Uggla for next-to-nothing? $18 Million for John Buck? $7 Million for Javier Vazquez? But they can’t spend to resign their own players and have slipped in their ability to develop from within. Somehow this doesn’t seem like the right way to make that team a winner again.
  • There have been a number of notable names signing to play over in Japan this winter. I’ve got a post that I’ve been stewing over about that so I won’t get into too many specifics for the time being. But it seems that a) there have been more players headed that way this winter so far and b) the players going are certainly more “name-worthy”.

That’s all for now. Amazing how I say this is just going to be some “quick thoughts” and here I am 800+ words later putting an end to the post.

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