Moore Wrong Ideas
Baseball Widow has already spoken about her rule of thumb regarding big-name players. To recap, if you've heard of him, he's probably too expensive. If he's already being called a hall-of-famer, he's definitely too expensive. John Schuerholz seems capable of understanding the reasons behind the rule. Terence Moore is clearly a little slow on the uptake.
As ungrateful as it may sound, it doesn't matter what you did last year. What matters is what you're going to do this year. I don't care if you're 38 homers short of 500; if you can't produce for me in the here and now, I don't want you.
In his latest waste of megabytes, Terence Moore suggests that the Braves move Chipper Jones back to third base, move J.D. Drew to left, move Andruw Jones to right field, and trade for Ken Griffey, Jr. to play center. Baseball Widow wasn't a math major, so I might run out of numbers before I run out of reasons why this is a terribly stupid idea. Here are just a few. . .
1. You can't cut payroll by increasing it. Moore makes much of the fact that Griffey's salary is only $8 million this year. But, Griffey's contract runs until 2009, and the man has deferred payments until 2024! It just doesn't make economic sense to tie up your money for that long on a player whose career could very possibly end with the next (seemingly inevitable) injury.
2. You can't trade away the future to reminisce about the past. Moore would have the Braves use the pitching prospects in the minors as trade bait for Griffey. Even assuming Junior has two good years left in him, what then? The Braves have set themselves back ten years in pitchers. In today's (lack of) money game, the players with the greatest economic return are the homegrown ones. Look at Marcus Giles--last year, he was the league's best second baseman, making just $316,500.
3. You wouldn't ask Jeff Gordon to start racing horses. Andrew Jones is the best at what he does. And what he does is play center field. How could it possibly make sense to move him for anyone except Willie Mays?
4. You wouldn't ask Britney Spears to sing opera at the Met. Chipper Jones is not a great defensive player--wherever he plays. Quite simply, he does the least damage in left field. Why would you want to move him to a position where his weaknesses are more evident? Which brings me to my next point. . .
5. The Braves have the hottest hot corner prospect in all of baseball. Andy Marte is the future of the Braves' third base. Why block his entrance on the scene by setting Chipper up there?
That's five not-very-insightful reasons. Just imagine what I could come up with if I actually thought about it for a while. But I'm not going to waste anymore thought on the issue because (thank goodness) Terence Moore isn't the Braves' GM.
Don't get me wrong: I think Griffey has been a great contribution to baseball. (Baseball Widow particularly loved him in Little Big League.) There is something almost primal about the idea of Griffey becoming a Brave. I can understand Moore's (Nerd Alert) Pavlovian reaction. Besides, what Braves fan doesn't want to stick it to the Hammond-hogging, Sheffield-stealing Yankees?
It's a shame that Griffey's career has been bogged down by injuries, but that's the nature of the game. Sure it would be great to have him as a Brave. . .if you could have the Griffey of yester-century. But the Griffey of 1998 is as gone as McGwire's home run record and Beanie Babies. Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to go listen to my Spice Girls albums.
Aaron at the aptly titled Aaron's Baseball Blog has an interesting take on this. Baseball Widow especially likes the way he points out Moore's column-to-column inconsistencies. Reading him over time, Moore's errors are egregious. Clearly, he writes just for the attention his headlines get, with no effort to present well-researched, well-reasoned journalism.