Sunday, February 24, 2008

The Fat Man Signeth (and other news)

So the big (and I mean big) news of the day is that the fattest man in baseball finally signed today (and no, I haven't checked if he's actually the fattest. That's entirely besides the point and if you want to waste your life looking up that particular stat, you have far too much time on your hands). Most of the details haven't leaked but if the ESPN report is true and there is absolutely no money guaranteed, then it's a great upside play for the Red Sox. While Colon hasn't impressed this spring so far, he still has rebound potential and, as this breakdown suggests, there is upside here. Now, the story with Colon is always his conditioning and his health. They are very much related; you simply cannot weigh as much as Colon does and expect to anything other than disaster. That's why the Red Sox signing is so good. The only way Colon gets spending money for Ho-Hos is if he gets his ass in shape. That should be motivation enough and if he gets himself back to 80%, then he should be able to provide some insurance in case Buchholz needs spelling to keep his innings down, Wakefield's knuckler starts dancing like this guy on Dancing with the Stars, or Schilling turned out to be telling the truth about his shoulder. As much as I hate the Red Sox, Epstein and Co. run a tight ship and this is a great signing.

In other news, Brad Lidge managed to hurt himself on his first pitch off a mound. Big surprise. I know that people absolutely destroyed Ed Wade for some of his trades this offseason. Some were warranted. But Lidge, while possessing lethal stuff, is fresh off one surgery and is heading for another. He had a couple great seasons but never seemed to regain his aura of invincibility after he gave up that monster homer to Pujols. The Astros didn't get a ton for Lidge (outfielder Michael Bourn, pitcher Geoff Geary, and minor leaguer Mike Costanzo) but at the very least, they're not paying his salary this season. The less money they spend this year the more money they'll have to lock up players like Hunter Pence to long-term contracts. A team that should be rebuilding doesn't have the luxury of paying millions to relievers (particularly given reliever volatility). So even if they didn't get the best possible return on Lidge, it sure beats $5+ million to him this year to sit out for the beginning of the year and be a head case for the rest of it. That said, Ed Wade is still an idiot.

In vaguely related news, my girlfriend often says that my feet look like manatees. While being strange and somewhat disturbing, this is also untrue. These guys look like manatees. Hell, it's even their freaking NAME. And while I support gender equality when it comes to cheerleaders, I'm going to spend more time looking at the Mermaids.

12 comments:

Mooch said...

so does this 'incentive-laden contract' have weigh-ins scheduled? cuz if not, I don't believe Colon will do anything but eat...I mean, seriously, look at the guy's track record. And it's not like we are talking Miguel Cabrera here who could still mash even while tossin on extra pounds. Colon had a year of no pitching = a year of not even minimal exercise. that's gotta make for a helluva starting point.

sanstodo said...

I don't think there are weighings. But he makes nothing if he doesn't make it to the majors. I doubt the red sox would call him up unless he showed good progress on his weight.

Anonymous said...

Holy hyperlinks batman

Adam said...

Minor Leaguer Mike Costanza!!

Hopefully no relation to George!

Andrew said...

Sitting here in the Jackson Hole Airport viewing everyone's skiing and snowboarding mishaps, I think the RSox made a good deal. Feeling too lazy to hit the "back" button on my browser to fact check myself in alignment with the posting, the RSox don't lose much of anything financially except hopefully Colon's bulging abdomen. If Colon can achieve some semblance of physical fitness, rather than physical fatness, we all know be has the velocity on his pitches (at least I'm fairly certain of this. I can't be troubled with fact checking right now). Anyway, right on Boston. You've again made the Dropkick Murphys proud. Papelbon can keep dancing his retarded leprechaun jig to your song.

sanstodo said...

Colon did show flashes of velocity when he last took the MLB mound. However, it was back down during his exhibition games this winter since he was once again out of shape.

But as you said, he's a good upside play and there really isn't any downside for the Red Sox. Makes me a bit angry that the Yankees didn't do it, actually.

Adam said...

One note about Miguel Cabrera and his battle of the bulge. Even though he can still mash with the added belly fat, his range at third has been hampered. He still has to field at the hot corner, unlike Bartolo "Never eats alone" Colon.

If he doesn't stem that pretty soon, then he'll have to become a DH, which is a shame for a player who once had the promise to be, arguably, the best player in his generation.

sanstodo said...

Miguel Cabrera has been a butcher at 3rd for a while. His weight doesn't help but he's pretty much an outfielder at this point (and don't get me started about Han-Ram). I bet the Tigers move Cabrera to left at some point and stick Inge back at 3B to help out the pitching staff. It should work for the Brewers this year with Braun so hopefully the Tigers will follow suit.

Adam said...

And his weight is going to help in the OUTFIELD!! How big is left in Tiger's stadium (or whatever they call it)? I hope the guy doesn't waddle!

sanstodo said...

well, LF is not nearly as dependent on clean footwork so it helps him there. Also, if he gets that momentum going, he could get places fast :D

Adam said...

Getting there is one thing, stopping is another! That scene could be hilarious!

Mooch said...

Comerica (sp?) Park does have a big left field, but a poor LF-er is nothing compared to a poor 3B-sman (see Ramirez, Manny and Bonds, Barry vs. Braun, Ryan and Fryman, Travis). Good point about the poor play at 3rd due to the weight gain tho.

I heard some of Peter Gammons' take on the Colon deal and have to say I agree: the Sox lost Schilling and don't want Lester/Bucholtz pitching 200innings so if they can get Colon into decent shape and throwing 88-90MPH for 80-100innings it'll be worth it to save the young pitchers.