Marty Lurie Talks San Francisco Giants Baseball

Daily Dish As Thanksgiving Approaches

Free agents who are anxious to get the process behind them will sign by Thanksgiving. It happens every year.

The White Sox thought they had Omar Vizquel locked up, but the future hall of famer (?) decided that he’d rather play on the west coast and chose the Giants instead.

So what does this say about the Giants? One, they won’t have a first round pick again in the amateur draft if Vizquel is a type A free agent as my colleague Bruce Grimes points out.

Two, they are casting their lot with a 37 year old shortstop with a history of knee problems. They better get healthy years from both Vizquel and Barry Bonds (40 yrs) if they are to be serious contenders in the west. One misstep by either spells trouble for the Giants. How many years can they get by with Bonds at his age leading the way?

Click below for more!After hearing the tape of Barry Bonds’ news conference after being named MVP I’m convinced that Bonds is an illegal supplement user. When asked about Gary Sheffield’s accusations that he and Bonds used some steroid cream, Bonds wouldn’t deny the charge, but instead went on some irrational rant about the story and the wrtiers involved.

Listen to Bonds’ answers to the questions from now on, he doesn’t sound like an innocent man. If he didn’t use the stuff, he would just say he didn’t and you haven’t heard him say that once during all these interviews. An innocent man would speak up by now.

Does it matter if he used illegal supplements? In his case not really, because in my opinion he has accomplished things that are unapproachable by others who have or are playing the game, and supplements aren’t letting him hit .360 or walk 225 times or hit 45 homers at age 40.

Sammy Sosa will be a Met. NY Daily News writer Mike Lupica, the Mets owners (Wilpons) personal sportswriter has given his OK for the deal bringing Sosa to NY. Once Lupica writes it he has spoken for the owners and it is going to happen.

Cliff Floyd is sure to go to Chicago in the deal since he called the Mets spring training home in Port St. Lucie a “hole”.

Al Leiter is using the Yankees to jack up his deal with the Mets. The Mets declined Leiter’s option and now are negotiating with Leiter for a lower priced one or two year deal. If David Wells stays on the west coast with LA or San Deigo then Leiter is a possibility for the Yanks, but right now he ranks behind Eric Milton and Randy Johnson in the NY Yanks pecking order. The Mets will end up overpaying for sure.

Anybody who takes the owners side hoping that salaries remain down is foolish. These owners are billionaires and can pay whatever they want to put a team on the field. They just determine how much they have to spend to keep the turnstiles moving, and that keeps the guessing game going.

Why writers and the public side with these billionaires in the salary issues is beyond me.

The franchises are worth hundreds of millions of dollars, no one has ever gone broke, they can pay whatever they want to compete if they want to. I have no pity for their plight. If Steinbrenner wants to pay Carlos Beltran 150 million he will. Houston could do it if they wanted to, but Drayton McLane would rather count his billion plus instead without paying the freight for Beltran. The Giants are worth 4 to 5 hundred million, you mean to tell me they can’t afford six million for a legit outfielder? The A’s are worth over 200 million, they can afford better players, they just won’t spend the money. So I don’t feel badly for the owners.

Troy Percival will sign a good contract by next week. Wherever he goes he will be a risk. I don’t care about the money he gets, but the team that signs him will be inheriting a load of medical issues.

Vladimir Guerrero is MVP. Personally I can’t quarrel with the choice, but David Ortiz should have won the award. The Red Sox were a potentially hot playoff team while the Angels limped in because the A’s folded down the stretch. Ortiz was the impact player in 2004 for Boston.

Ortiz is such a pain in the butt to the Yanks that the New Yorkers are seriously trying to add three lefties to their ’05 rotation.

Washington signed Vinny Castilla and Cristian Guzman without having any owners or any purchase price for the Expos worked out. Think anyone in DC is worried about spending money? Baseball will make about 100 million on the deal. Like I said, these guys (owners) don’t lose money on anything they do.

The Phils signed Cory Lidle to a two year deal. If Lidle is anything more than their fifth starter don’t take the Phillies seriously next year. Lidle can win some games in August and September, but the rest of the year he is as inconsistent as the weather in Miami is during the summer (very inconsistent).

Mark Kotsay tied for 13th in the AL MVP voting with A Rod, that should tell you the kind of season both players had. Kotsay’s year a nice surprise, A Rod’s another weak-hit-in-the clutch year for baseball’s pretty boy.

I have a feeling Carlos Delgado will sign earlier than people think.

Also I have a guess that the Rangers are going to trade Alfonso Soriano to the Giants for either Ray Durham or Edgardo Alfonzo plus a pitcher (Jesse Foppert). Soriano would give the Giants the bat they need to help Bonds plus gets rid of an unwanted player in either Durham or Alfonzo. Soriano can play second if necessary and would move to right field even if he says at this time that he doesn’t want to make the switch.

Durham would give the Rangers a DH/second baseman for the next year or two.

So in summation:

Bonds took supplements without a doubt.

The Mets will get Sosa, no question about it.

The White Sox were left at the alter by Vizquel and Guzman.

The owners have so much money that their cries of poor mouth are sickening.

Vlad deserved his award but barely.

The Phils are in trouble with Cory Lidle.

The Giants will make another move very soon and I’ll bet its Soriano even though they need a closer big time.

Whoever gets Percival is in for a world of disappointment.

Have a nice day.



1 OaklandSi { 11.16.04 at 6:29 pm }

Great article!

what is it with San Francisco’s fixation with over 35 players? No matter how good their careers have been, physically it’s all downhill. It’s the rare ballplayer who can really be productive and avoid missing lots of time due to injury past that age.

2 Anonymous { 11.16.04 at 6:56 pm }

Great info. about actual and potential trades. I’ll add that there’s a rumor about a Redman/Rhodes for Kendall deal. Know anything about it? I’m very upset the A’s are letting Miller go (he did make questionable calls around the plate, though), but I’d feel good if that deal went through. And thanks for the swipes at the owners. You should know that some of us out here share your view.
-Mike E.

3 Dave { 11.16.04 at 9:17 pm }

Delgado’s looking to sign with Seattle, and it seems like a perfect fit for a reclusive guy who happens to mash. This guy could have a Vlad-like impact on the Mariners if he’s healthy all year. To think the AL West next year will have more superstars than ever is scary. What happens if the Mariners sign Delgado for less than market value, and still have enough to go after a impact pitcher? Carl Pavano just came back from Seattle, I think, so who knows what the Mariners are going to do with that left-over Sasaki money.
I don’t understand why any team would pay for Cristan Guzman, much less give him $16 million. If defense is worth that much to ballclubs now, then I guess defense has become overrated very quickly. Who knows if that plays into Beane’s hands or not.
Anaheim is still expected to make a run at Randy Johnson, but I don’t know if they still are willing to part with big bats. If Arizona was offered Jon Garland and Paul Konerko, that’s not necessarily a bad deal, though the D-Backs also asked for Aaron Rowand. It might take Dallas McPherson, Jose Guillen, and Ramon Ortiz to pry away RJ, though.
Does anyone feel for Kevin Milwood? He passed up a big-time three-year deal so he could make the big bucks on the market this year. The best part is that not only is the market depressed, but he had a terrible year too. The Phillies can probably have him for 50-60% of what they offered last year.
The A’s have been rumored to offer Arthur Rhodes and Mark Redman for Jason Kendall, but that seems like a recipe for disaster. If Landon Powell, Kurt Suzuki, John Baker, and Jeremy Brown are so hot, why would the A’s acquire a big contract that goes through 2007?

4 Anonymous { 11.16.04 at 9:55 pm }

Marty; A short response to a provacative column. The Giants are in a constant yearly dilemma. Thay have a farm system which seemingly cannot produce a young position player with major league talent. No Chavez, no Tejada ever surfaces from Fresno. This means that they do not have productive players who stick around for four or five years, get traded for a bunch of draft choices, and the process keeps repeating itself. They don’t have to look further than across the Bay to figure this out. They end up signing a 38 year old shortstop for three years and hope that his body holds up. As pointed out, the evil is compounded by the fact that they may have to give up a draft choice once again. They now have a 40 year old, and a couple of 38s who may be playing regularly, or at least until age catches up with them. Other than this, their recent signing may work. If healthy, he is a major acquisition for a position which demanded upgrading. If they can swing the deal for Soriano it will make them a realistic competitor. It is likely, however, that the wish is father to the thought. If, in addition, they can dump Alfonzo, as part of the deal, Christmas will have come early. At least one decent outfielder,and a closer, not Hermanson, will complete the picture. Is all of the above likely to happen? Isn’t this what fans all over the country are doing right now? Conjuring up scenarios which allow the best available players on the market to join their favorite team, instantly making the club a favorite to go all the way in the 2005 playoffs. Why should we be any different?

Ed Stern

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