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Sunday, November 26, 2006

The Jokesters at

As I'm sure you've all noticed, fiscal sanity has taken a vacation this fall, and GM's across the continent from Toronto to Chicago to Los Angeles have been throwing money around more foolishly than my high school friends on an underage Malaysian boy cruise (i.e. very foolishly).

In particular the signings of Juan Pierre and Gary Matthews Jr have drawn considerable and much deserved criticism from sports writers (even NY Post's George King was able to take some time out from imagining that Beltran was more valuable than Pujols in 2006). Amusingly, there is one place that each of these signings is seen as a great move. One place that can find no fault with these soon to be albatross contracts. And that place is as you may guessed

Regarding the Dodgers signing of Juan Pierre to a shocking $45 million dollar deal, MLB struggled to find positive things to write, choosing to point out that Pierre played 162 games in 2006 rather than focus on his .330 OBP or his career high in outs. Unable to come up with enough to say regarding Pierre's 2006 season, rather hysterically drifts back to 2003:

During the Marlins' championship season of 2003, Pierre finished 10th in National League MVP voting, as he led the league in five categories, including games (162), at-bats (668), stolen bases (65), singles (168) and sacrifice hits (15).

Any Dodgers fans out there worrying about how their team will score runs in 2007 can surely take solace in knowing that in 2003, their new centerfielder led the National League in sacrifice hits. So when Pierre comes up with a runner on third and less than 2 outs, fans can rest assured that he will indeed ground out.'s thoughts on the Angels signing of Gary Matthews Jr are priceless. The whole article can be found here, but before we go over some highlights, lets take a look at Gary Matthews Jr.
It's pretty obvious that this 32 year old centerfielder had a career year in 2006, but just how much of an anomaly his season was may surprise you.

Career Avg.791458136.263.336.419.755
2006 1021979194.313.371.495.866

Clearly, the Angles are paying Matthews with the expectation that his career will continue along like his 2006 season. This is a big chance the usually cautious Angels are taking, and quite frankly there is no evidence to support their assumption. apparently sees no risk:

  • The Angels landed a centerpiece for their holiday table with the signing of free agent Gary Matthews Jr. on Wednesday
  • Matthews represents an offseason victory for the Angels
  • The 32-year-old will take over in center field and provide Gold Glove-caliber defense while adding speed and some power to the top of the order seems to have Matthews confused with Johnny Damon, or Vernon Wells. Oh well, we all should have known Matthews would be woefully overpaid as soon as he made the All Star team and Travis Hafner did not.

Now it's time to sit back and wait to see who will be the next team to overpay for a mediocre player. Who will get the next outragious contract? Surely a pitcher will sign soon, and whether it's Schmidt, Suppan, Lilly, Meche or Zito the team who signs them will most likely regret it within a few years. But probably not as much as the Angels will regret the Matthews signing. And when they do, I don't expect to read about it on


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