So, I was wrong about Miguel Batista's contract. And it looks like he is more excited than Vidro about joining the M's. I was holding out hope when I read the paper on Saturday, but I guess the Jose Vidro trade actually did happen.
The interesting part of the Batista article was Bavasi seeming to get defensive about his horrible moves:
Asked if he was concerned about negative fan reaction, general manager Bill Bavasi replied: "I'm the one dealing in the market. I know what the market is. I know what's available. The reaction is probably a whole lot different if I drag you with me for a month, and you see what it's like."
You think the Magic is getting to him? I'm sure that Bill Bavasi knows more about baseball than me. But, what do you think his response would be to Keith Law? Law, after all, worked in the Toronto front office, so I assume that he knows what he is talking about. Yet, his reaction to the trades for Horacio Ramirez and Vidro (scroll down for the Ramirez deal, you can't miss the headline) were only slightly less restrained than ours. And he writes for ESPN.com, so I would assume that he has to be a little more diplomatic than we do. Here are some of Mr. Law's choice comments (and you really should take the time to read the whole thing; they aren't very long) on the Vidro deal:
I have no idea what the Mariners were thinking. None. I had to take two ibuprofen tablets after I learned about the deal so that I could write this analysis.
And on trading Rafael Soriano:
The Braves picked up their probable future closer in exchange for a player whom they almost certainly would have non-tendered next week. The Mariners made themselves worse for no apparent reason other than fear.
This is an outside observer with no rooting interest.
I have a hard time believing that the M's couldn't have gotten more for Soriano than they did. The rumors surrounding Mike Gonzalez involve the Pirates getting Melky Cabrera, who, along with Phillip Hughes, had previously been considered off-limits for trades. Soriano is younger and better than Gonzalez. How did the M's only get Horacio Ramirez?
Maybe the market is that bad. I mean, what do I know? Still, I'm no economist, but if the "market" was only allowing Bavasi to get less than fair-market value for good prospects, well, then maybe it was a good time to stay out of the market. The Ramirez trade could be justified by reasoning that the M's needed a starting pitcher to throw the ball every fifth day. So, I suppose there is an argument to be made that Bavasi was in a position where he had to take less than full value to get a starter to fill out the rotation.
But, is trading for an expensive, injury-plagued contact hitter to DH out of the second spot in the line-up really going to make a noticeable improvement in the team's offense? I can see not wanting to rush pitchers up from the minors before they are ready to take the full-load of a major league season, but why not just call up Jeff Clement to DH instead of getting rid of a young, talented hitter who just can't seem to stay healthy and a young, hard throwing pitcher who needs to work on his control? Those seem like the players that you gamble on. Why gamble $16 million over the next two years on Jose Vidro staying healthy at age 33?
It has been a frustrating week to be a Seattle sports fan. The Seahawks fell apart and failed to clinch against the 49ers at home. (For those who are reading this immediately after coming out of a coma that began in 1991: Joe Montana doesn’t play for the 49ers anymore.) The Hornets' owner announced that they are going back to/staying in New Orleans, leaving Oklahoma City without an NBA franchise. One would think that since the M's are not playing that they could at least avoid depressing their fan base. I guess that would be too much to ask.