Boy, that escalated quickly... I mean, that really got out of hand fast!
Is anyone buying this?
“I had a long talk with Barry the other day and I told him that this move is not about money,” Joe said. “It’s about nothing other than legacy.”
In theory that sounds nice. However, you do not fire your agent and bring in Scott Boras to not make a move based on money. Zito could retire today and still have plenty of money for the rest of his life as he has brought in $18,035,000 in his seven year career. In those seven years, he has averaged 14.57 wins and that includes his rookie season when he threw in only fourteen games. Since his rookie season, he has average 15.8 wins per season. We've already heard about Barry Zito's aspirations to be a Hall of Fame pitcher and we'll see if he really means that.
The only shot Barry has of making the Hall of Fame is notching 300 wins. His 102 wins at the age of 28 is certainly impressive, but he'll need to average 14.14 wins over the next fourteen years to attain that goal of his (Glavine had 108 wins through age 28 after eight years of baseball and ten more starts than Barry). That is not exactly easy to say the least, but for a durable lefty that can probably throw into his early forties, it is not impossible. Improbable? Yes. Impossible? A tick below impossible, but not impossible. Dayn Perry basically echoes the sentiments a lot of us have been bellowing out and that is the New York Mets and Barry Zito go together like a hooker and track marks.
Zito's prone to the longball, but Shea is a brutal park for power hitters (particularly right-handed power hitters) and will help to mask that deficiency. If Zito winds up a Cub or Ranger, he's going to get lit up. For Zito to succeed his home park needs to be a pitcher's environment. The Mets need durability, and Zito needs a forgiving park and a slick defensive outfield. It's a match.
If Barry comes to the Mets, it is completely reasonable to think he can notch 80 to 85 wins over the next five years while the Mets figure to be a 90-100 win team in each of those seasons. The deeper you go into games the better shot you have at winning games and Barry is no stranger to going deep into games. Furthermore, I've said that I think he could drop a year like his 2002 season with sub 3.00 ERA and 24 wins or so. At the ripe age of 33, Barry could be in the neighborhood of 185 wins with plenty of years left on his arm to pitch. If Barry is serious about his legacy and a legitimate play at the Hall of Fame, the only team that has showed interest in him this off season that can help him get to that goal is the Mets.
Teams like the Mariners and the Rangers are chasing Barry and that scares me. That scares me because the Mariners are desperately trying to make all the money they've sunk into Adrian Beltre and Richie Sexson look good by actually winning and they are trying to build a better team so they can keep Ichiro around after his contract expires. Bringing in solid pitcher can help pile on some wins, but the Mariners are far more than one ace away. The Mariners did win 78 games last year and if they can improve their staff, they might get over that hump and at least keep in the AL West race until the final weeks of the season.
The Rangers epitomize desperation after trading Adrian Gonzalez and Chris Young only to see them look like cornerstones of the Padres franchise and trading Mench, Nix, and Cordero for Carlos Lee when they really were not good enough to contend for the AL West crown only to see him leave for greener pastures. Daniels needs to do something big and I'm not talking about signing Vincente Padilla. Getting Zito will give the natives a little less to be restless about, but I'm sure that would all change as soon as the mediocrity continues. Jon Daniels wants to make a power move and Omar has repeatedly said he will not get into a bidding war. If Daniels will go six years at $102 million ($17 million annually), you can be sure Zito will be giving up forty long balls in Arlington in 2007.
Things have really started to get away from everyone this off-season and with Lilly possibly tabbed to get $11 to $12 million per year, I'm starting to really consider plan B for the Mets and their starting rotation.
"It's disappointing, to say the least," La Russa added. "We were rooting for the Detroit Tigers just like everyone else."
According to Cardinals players, they "tried absolutely everything" in their pursuit to earn the Tigers their first world championship since 1984, including eliminating the far more dangerous New York Mets in the NLCS, entering the series completely unrested after a grueling seven-game series, starting a rookie pitcher with five career wins in Game 1 in Detroit, and postponing Game 4 due to rain in the hopes that an off day would swing the momentum back in the Tigers' favor.
"I don't know what we could've done differently," second-baseman Ronnie Belliard said. "We gave the Tigers every opportunity to win ballgames, but when their pitchers keep making errors on simple ground balls, what are we supposed to do, pretend we forgot the rules and start running to third base?"
Desperate for a Tigers win in Game 2, the Cardinals chose to overlook the fact that starter Kenny Rogers was pitching with the aid of a foreign substance on his left hand.
"Of course we all knew it was pine tar, but it seemed like they were finally finding their rhythm… We certainly didn't want to shake their confidence, so we decided to just let it go," La Russa said. "Frankly, if the umpires didn't bring it up, we probably would've let him pitch with it the whole game."