Monday, November 29, 2004
We Can't Afford
Mike Matheny and his .293 career OBP and .336 career SLG filling a spot in the Sox lineup. I don't care if he throws out 20 more baserunners a year. Over the course of 500 plate appearances, a .340 OBP catcher would be on base 20 more times and make 20 fewer outs - which more than makes up for Matheny throwing out 20 baserunners, if he could even do that. Nevertheless, Phil Rogers writes:
Cardinals free agent Mike Matheny, a hard-nosed veteran who can handle pitchers, would be a perfect fit. But he wants about $5 million for two years, maybe more.
If Matheny and his .293 career OBP are a perfect fit, we need to change the White Sox's clothing size. Oh, but it goes from Guatemala to Gautepeor (high schools Espanol idiom):
The Twins thought Henry Blanco's request for a two-year, $3 million contract was too high and let him go, so he would be a possibility.
By God, Blanco has a worse career OBP - .288 (but with a robust .356 SLG). He's got a career .216 average, including a stellar .206 performance (with a .260 OBP) last year for the Twinkies. Our goal here is to make ourselves better while the Twinks get worse, not the other way around.
I don't know who Phil Rogers' sources are. In fact, I fervently hope that he has none and the Matheny and Blanco names are just two he dreamed up. But it's clear that either of those names are a step in the wrong direction.
If the Sox want some veteran leadership at the catching position, then they can pick up free agent Todd Pratt of the career .352 OBP and .404 SLG. At a 2004 salary of $875,000, he'd be a reasonable investment. Of course, he'll be 38 in 2005, and you'd hope that you can squeeze 200 at bats out of him while seeing if Ben Davis or Jamie Burke can handle the other 400 at bats.
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