While the Toronto Blue Jays rumour mill continued to churn on impending moves, the New York Yankees got busy, signed Jacoby Ellsbury and introduced him to the world this week. I had the luxury of listening to the press conference through Boston Red Sox radio station, 93.7 WEEI (if ever there was a person that faked not sounding bitter, radio host Mike Mutnansky was that guy.) Ellsbury came out to the heaping praise of new coach Joe Girardi (fast-forward to 2:06 if you feel like vomiting) with Girardi saying a line I’ll probably never forget. After the Yankees presented Ellsbury’s wife, Kelsay, with flowers, Girardi said “You were a thorn in my side, now you’re a flower in our clubhouse.” Aww! Isn’t that special ::porcelain party:: LET’S DO THIS!
BALTIMORE ORIOLES: The Orioles continued making minor moves to try to deal with their current financial situation, signing guys like OF Francisco Peguero and Ryan Webb. While GM Dan Duquette was raving about Peguero, it was the pick-up of Webb that stands out. For a reliever, the K/9 is often talked about to show effectiveness/dominance. At 6.05 K/9, Webb doesn’t stand out to anybody. What does make him effective is his 57.4 GB%. According to Fangraphs.com, his LOB% was 75% last season for the Miami Marlins, making him a very good situation relief pitcher.
Another under-the-radar move involved the completion of the Jim Johnson trade to Oakland. The Athletics sent back C David Freitas. Trying to talk this move up for Orioles fans is pointless. Johnny Monell is better. That’s all I gotta say bout that.
BOSTON RED SOX: The shirtless, drunken bearded man has returned to Boston. I know. Which one right? Red Sox 1B Mike Napoli signed a 2 yr/$32M. When it was discovered that Napoli had a hip condition last season, Napoli’s 3 yr/$39M contract was voided with team. He signed a 1 yr/$5M instead, that after performance bonuses, equated to $13M. With the signing of this new contract, Napoli’s payout increased over the same 3 yr span by $6M. WIN NAPOLI!
Unlike the Red Sox rival, Yankees, the Sox have been relatively quiet this offseason. While one Boston Globe writer complained the Sox are doing too little, it is this writer’s belief that there is not a whole lot for the Red Sox to do at this point.
TAMPA BAY RAYS: Boston wasn’t the only team to re-sign a 1B this week. The Rays finalized a 3 yr/$21M deal James Loney. The revitalized first baseman, who put up better-than-career-numbers in BA (.299/ .285 career) and OBP (.348/ .340 career) probably could have commanded more money elsewhere. Instead, Loney gave the Rays a discount to stay in TB. (Now there’s a guy that gets it!)
The Rays also completed their trade from last week, when they acquired Heath Bell from the Arizona Diamondback for a player-to-be-named. That player is Todd Glaesmann. Apparently this is guy that had Diamondback GM Kevin Towers said would be the key to the deal. I’m not really sure what Towers see here. The AA prospect doesn’t really have stats that stand out other than his BB:K, which is awful (26:110) I guess it’s one of those “you just have to see him” situations, like A.J. Pollock? Probably not… Rays win that deal.
NEW YORK YANKEES: The Yankees stayed busy, but with a flashier moves this week. NY acquired the services of RHP Kyle Haynes from the Pittsburgh Pirates to complete the trade last week for C Chris Stewart. The soon-to-be 23 year old had an impressive K/9 (9.18) in Pirates A, as well as a solid ERA of 2.38, most likely earning him a promotion with the Yankees.
Other than that, the Yanks stayed busy through the media this week, not only introducing Ellsbury, but also discussing how Robinson Cano” href=”http://espn.go.com/new-york/mlb/story/_/id/10133364/new-york-yankees-not-angry-robinson-cano-felt-sorry-him”>they “feel bad” for departed player Robinson Cano. I’m sure as the winter plays on, this will be further discussed because the New York media loves a good BS story.