- Bonser DFA'd, traded to the Red Sox
Losing Boof kind of sucks, actually. Oh, I understand perfectly why the Twins felt justified in moving a 28 year-old coming off of shoulder surgery who hadn't put up decent numbers since his rookie season in 2006. He and his agent reportedly wanted a $1.5 million raise, while the Twins' offer was substantially less than that (and probably much closer to what he's actually worth). The Twins' 2010 opening day payroll is already pushing $90 million, and that's without a contract extension to Joe Mauer or addressing the infield, so it makes sense to cut expensive, mediocre middle relievers. But man, I'm going to miss chanting "BOOOOOOOF!!!" whenever he would come trotting in from the bullpen. Besides, Boof could probably be a useful middle reliever, or maybe even a back-of-the-rotation starter. That's a lot more than can be said about Bobby Keppel, who is still on the 40-man roster for some reason (probably because he's making the league minimum whether he likes it or not). However, as much as I hate to see him go, moving to Boston might be the best thing for Boof. Boof has struggled against left-handed pitching for the past few seasons, and the Twins have little use for what amounts to an expensive ROOGY. The Red Sox, on the other hand, have one of the deepest bullpens in MLB, and a manager who knows how to best utilize the strengths of his relievers (not to mention the fact that $1.5 million amounts to pocket change for the Sawx). And it's still better than signing Brandon Lyon.
- Carl Pavano agrees to arbitration
The Twins had to DFA Boofer to clear space on the 40-man for Carl Pavano, who decided to accept the Twins' arbitration offer. He explained his decision to forgo free agency thusly:
"There were different ways to look at my decision. I could have continued to sit back and wait for the market to unfold more, take a chance and end up with a team that is not a winner and in a place I don't want to be. Or I accept arbitration and work out a deal with a team that is strong in character and talent, as I have already experienced, with a staff that is the one of the best I've had in baseball, and in a division where our rival last year is rumored to be unloading some of their top players with other teams in the start of a rebuilding phase. That doesn't ensure us anything, but I like our chances."Aww, we love you too, Carl, and it's good to have you back. I'm not surprised other teams may have shied away from signing a 33-year old with a dubious health history and a 5.10 ERA to a multi-year deal (although the 3 years, $29.75 million to Randy Wolf is a bit of a head-scratcher). However, as Parker Hageman notes, Pavano pitched much better than his ERA would indicate and should see some improvement in his numbers next season. How much his numbers will improve is debatable (he will be a 34 year old finesse pitcher, after all), and I'm not sure how much stock I would put in his peripherals. There obviously isn't much data available on his performance over the past four years, and he did pitch against a lot of terrible teams last year. He did post a decent strikeout rate while walking a mere 1.8 batters per nine innings though, and he got a lot of ground balls without giving up too many home runs, all of which is very encouraging (the acquisition of J. J. Hardy should help shore up the infield defense, too). I wouldn't expect Pavano to put up Greinke-like numbers next year, but an ERA somewhere around 4.00 isn't unreasonable (EDIT: I should have just checked with Bill James before posting. He projects a 4.46 ERA for Pavano next year. That sounds about right). A Baker, Slowey, Blackburn, Pavano, Perkins/Duensing/???? rotation might not be the best in the division, but it looks pretty solid so far.
- Third Base:
- The Tigers were kind of busy, too:
- Non-baseball related:
Benoit Pouliot is already considered the fourth-worst draft pick of the decade. It's amazing, then, that Chuck Fletcher actually got something useful for him:
Finally, the poll is closed, the people have spoken, and this blog will have a new name. I'll have a more formal announcement on Monday (I do have to check and make sure the name isn't already registered and everything. Gosh, I probably should have put more thought into this), and thanks to all who participated. Oh, and be sure to check out Dan Wade's interview with 2009 AL MVP Joe Mauer. There will be riots in the streets if Joe ever plays for someone else.