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December 8, 2008

What happens in Vegas ...

... sometimes lands in The Schmuck Stops Here. Most of the major league front office people have arrived for the winter meetings and there is a full schedule of events starting today. In the meantime, I wandered around the Bellagio Hotel Sunday (when I wasn't watching the Ravens take care of business against the Redskins) and came up with a few rumors and ruminations.

hairston.jpgRumor: The Orioles have an interest in reacquiring free agent Jerry Hairston Jr. to provide insurance in case Brian Roberts has to be traded or be a super utilityman if Roberts signs a long-term extension.

Rumination: Though there have been reports that the Jake Peavy deal is about to be completed. I'm hearing that it remains delayed by the same complications that have been reported on in the past. Namely, the ongoing effort by the Tribune Company to sell the Cubs franchise and the necessity to keep potential buyers informed about and agreeable to upcoming changes in the team's payroll.

Rumor: Mark Teixeira has made it clear to West Coast teams -- namely the Los Angeles Angels -- that he wants to play on the East Coast. I checked this one out with one of the Angels beat reporters, who said that it's bunk and that the Angels still are going hard after Tex.

bedard.jpgRumination: I mentioned yesterday that Jeremy Guthrie and Erik Bedard (left) were using the winter meetings as an excuse to get together. Turns out, Bedard had a more compelling reason to come. Saw him in the hotel lobby yesterday talking to Angels team orthopedist Dr. Lewis Yocum, who performed the cleanup surgery on his shoulder. Later ascertained that Erik came in so Yocum could re-evaluate his shoulder.

Rumor: The Mariners may non-tender Bedard even though the outlook for him pitching a full season this year is much brighter. The Orioles still need two decent starting pitchers. You do the math.

Posted by Peter Schmuck at 6:30 AM | | Comments (20)
Categories: Just baseball


Ian Desmond (of the Nationals) would be the answer to the O's shortstop situation... if they can trade for him, how about trading Daniel Cabrera for Desmond and Wily Mo Pena. Desmond is blocked from playing for the Nationals right now (Guzman is entrenched at short there) Ian would give the O's a shortstop for a decade or more at least (he's 23).


Unfortuantely the Orioles are all about making money for the owner, and are run that way. They will not be big spenders. Some teams are desperate to win and are run that way, others like the Orioles are run to make money. Angelos has folks duped into thinking he can't compete because his revenues aren't high enough. What's really important is income. Income equals revenues minus costs. The Orioles have decent income and low costs, their income is high.

Here is income from 2002 thru 2007 and the rank of
various teams. THE TOP TEN
team income rank
Indians 125.3 1
DRays 106.3 2
Orioles 101.3 3
Reds 98.8 4
Braves 95.1 5
Wh Sox 93.9 6
Mariner 90 7
Brewers 85.6 8
Cubs 83.1 9
Astros 75.9 10

team income rank
Bl Jays 22.8 21
Mets 22.3 22
Phils 22.1 23
Tigers 19.7 24
Dodgers 9.4 25
Rangers 2.6 26
Angels -15.1 27
DBACKS -22 28
Red Sox -42.9 29
Yankees -169.6 30

Conclusion Angelos is running this team to make money and doing a great job. Their income is 3rd in all baseball over a six year period. Oriole's income over a six year period is 270 million higher than the Yankees, a team desperate to win. This is how the Orioles will behave this offseason. Winning isn't everything, making money is. In the end expect a marginally competitive team with low payroll and high profitability, straight to the owner's pockets. Don't expect us to sign Burnett or Tex that money is for Angelos. Perhaps it's time to boycott everything Angelos.

Jerry Hairston? Quit kidding around, Peter. That's not funny.

Despite having a horrible team attitude, I wouldn't mind Erik Bedard in an O's uniform again for a couple of years.

If Bedard wants to come back, I think you take him back in a heartbeat!

Oh who will fill in at 2B when Hairston gets hurt 3 weeks later? I'm tired of this crap with this team.


Other than not being a fan of the media, does Bedard drag the clubhouse down? Is he a good teammate?

I know we need pitching badly, Did seattle make Baltimore look good to him?

Even if he starts the year on the DL, I would think he comes cheaper.....

What is non-tender? (just dropping him like we did to Gibbons)

Harriston but of some decent numbers around being injured last year. He had a hot enough week, he ended up on my fanatasy team for a week or two (then he gort hurt). Not that a week or two of streaky play makes player, but as a utility or B-Rob replacement, we could probably do worse. (he is not B-rob).

Pete's reply: Non-tender means they don't offer a contract by the deadline and the player becomes an unrestricted free agent.

Other than not being a fan of the media, does Bedard drag the clubhouse down? Is he a good teammate?

I know we need pitching badly, Did seattle make Baltimore look good to him?

Even if he starts the year on the DL, I would think he comes cheaper.....

What is non-tender? (just dropping him like we did to Gibbons)

Harriston but of some decent numbers around being injured last year. He had a hot enough week, he ended up on my fanatasy team for a week or two (then he gort hurt). Not that a week or two of streaky play makes player, but as a utility or B-Rob replacement, we could probably do worse. (he is not B-rob)

We sign Bedard, he comes back and pitches great for most of the year, goes 16-7. Wouldn't that just be the coup de grace for that trade? Ha!

So you're telling me that after years of praying and hoping that Brian Roberts would replace Jerry Hairston after Hairston started frequenting the DL; we might end up with Jerry Hairston as our second baseman? Is there no justice in this world?

So your rumination is that the Orioles might re-sign Bedard? If (1) that is true and happens and (2) Bedard has a great season I think we can say that the Bedard trade last year will go down in Mariners history as the worst of all time. Needless to say I'm very worried as to how I'll sleep at night...Okay, from another post you seem to intimate that whither Tex may go, CC may follow? So Tex signs with the Orioles, CC signs with the Orioles, Bedard signs with the Orioles and has a killer season and we win the World Series. Hey, it is the holidays, a time when kids of all ages (even the 46 year old die-never Orioles fan variety) dream of that perfect Christmas gift.

Pete's reply: I wasn't intimating that whereever Tex goes, C.C. would go. He would wait and concentrate on the teams that had the money to sign Teixeira and didn't.

Jack, you're argument makes no sense. There is no way The Orioles "income" (the amount of money a team takes in) is higher than that of the Yankees, a team that sells out every night.

I think you're trying to base your argument on "profit" (the amount of money a team has after they subtract their expenses from their income) but I even find that hard to believe.

But hey, those are just 4th grade math and reasoning skills, what am I talking about...

I would prefer Hairston on the bench over Fahey---and he is a fall back in case Roberts is traded

Ever since I heard they had stopped discussing a deal to lock up our franchise right fielder, I've been especially disinterested. Now to cheer me up you tell me they might resign someone they kicked to the curb six, eight, maybe even ten years ago. I always liked Jerry's style of play and all that, but a utility guy is the last of our concerns right now. Where is it that the Bayhawks play?

Wake up everyone. IF we trade Roberts, we will be getting 3 top prospects. Remember, we are REBUILDING. If we sign a decent SS this year and plug Hairston in for a year, we can always replace him with another free agent or a prospect in the minors. Also, Adam Jones would be the new leadoff hitter. I don't want to see Roberts go, but if he wants a ton of money and we can get a bunch of gems like we did in the other two trades last off season, I would take that in a heartbeat. Even if you keep him, sign Tex and Burnett, we are not going to the playoffs. We need need pitching and only time will tell how Matusz, Tillman, Arrietta, and Bergensen will be. It's possible Guthrie could be a 3 or 4 starter when these prospects are ready. I would rather see the O's get prospects so they can SUSTAIN a winning record for multiple years. When these big free agents sign and the contract expires, they will want either more money or they will go somewhere else. Who are you going to replace them with? Top ranked prospects or high priced overrated free agents? Hairston would only be a short term solution, just like our SS last year when we traded Tejada. You can't fix a team in two seasons. We should see steady improvement for the next couple years and when our prospects are ready, then you fill in the holes. Imagine if you have Weiters, Snyder, Reimold, Jones, Markakis, Arrietta, Bergensen, Tillman, and Matusz all come up together and succeed? This could be a reality and should happen in the very near future.

We're making no sense. Hairston replace Roberts? Is someone delusional? Hairstons stats pale in comparison to Roberts. In the last 5 years, he's played in more than 100 games twice and in one of those seasons he had 101 ABs. Who has to tell these folks at the TOP that we need a shortstop, a 1st baseman and maybe 3 or 4 starting pitchers. And the names chucked out there for BRob are 3 or 4's not a 2. Come on Andy, give us hope!

Pete's reply: Nobody said they want to replace Roberts with anyone. The rumor was that he would be a fallback if Roberts doesn't want to sign.

If Bedard somehow ended up back here (which I don't think would happen) it would be like the Bordick deal to the Mets times 1000.

Well I would feel a lot better about the Bedard trade if we got him back. AM would get major points for that and look like a genius. I like Jerry and for a utility player he is better than what we had last year.

Pete: Why would the O's have to trade Roberts?

Pete's reply: Because he'll be a free agent after this year and they won't get top value for him if they wait much longer.

I think they could wait until July for that, someone I am sure that is in the playoff hunt would jump on him. I hope the O's sign him. Good stuff! Thanks

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About Peter Schmuck
Peter Schmuck wants you to know that, contrary to popular belief, he is more than just a bon vivant, raconteur and collector of blousy flowered shirts. He is a semi-respected journalist who has covered virtually every sport -- except luge, of course – and tackled issues that transcend the mere games people play. If that isn’t enough to qualify him to provide witty, wide-ranging commentary on the sports world ... and the rest of the world, for that matter ... he is an avid reader of history, biography and the classics, as well as a charming blowhard who pops off on both sports and politics on WBAL Radio. That means you can expect a little of everything in The Schmuck Stops Here, but the major focus will be keeping you up to the minute on Baltimore’s major sports teams and themes, whether it’s throwing up the Orioles lineup the minute it’s announced or updating you on the latest sprained ankle in Owings Mills. Oh, and by the way, that’s Mr. Schmuck to you.

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