Friday, January 7, 2011

If they win for you, keep them around

Let me give you a scenario- you're in your late thirties, and you were recently named MVP of the World Series. Your team loves you, your fans love you, the city thinks you're a hero, and you did pretty good at your position in the past year. You've been with the team for a couple years now, and you feel at home there. What does your team do? Refuse to sign you and release you. So, for no real reason other than they don't need you, you sign with a team who used the same strategy (cobbling together awesome pitching with young and old "misfit" players) for a year.

Isn't that unfair, what your team did to you? You were the MVP of the World Series 1 day, and the next day you're teamless. Can the team just define you by age- you have a few years left!

This was the scenario for Edgar Renteria, who today signed with the stronger-every-day Cincinnati Reds. And if have no problem with the Reds, Edgar will play fine there. But...he was a big part in winning the Giants a World Series ring. To be fair, they already ditched Juan Uribe, whose 8th inning heroics shouldn't have happened, but still did. But now, the WS MVP?

To be fair, I KNOW he's in his late 30's. I KNOW he's getting old, and his playing time's gonna decrease. And I KNOW that unless something miraculous happens, Edgar Renteria isn't getting into Cooperstown. But let's be honest here- if you were the GM of a team coming off a World Series, and your aging but still reliable MVP was in need of a contract, would you sign him? I certainly would, to make the fans, and him, happy.

This same "If they win for you, keep them" strategy also relates to another player who did a big thing this year. If you've seen MLB Network, or ESPN, you've heard that the Rays want to trade Matt Garza to the Cubs. I honestly don't see the reasoning behind this decision. This means for the first time in my life, I'll be taking Tampa's side.

Matt Garza was an excellent pitcher for the Rays. With them, he found his footing and became a force to reckon with in the AL East. Hell, he even threw TAMPA'S FIRST EVER NO-HITTER. Which means he's gonna be a name that Tamap will remember for years. Matt Garza was only overshadowed by one other pitcher- Mister The-Hype-Paid-Off-For-Me, David Price. But still, the Rays love Garza, and the Rays fans love Garza. And only one person loved Garza more- Chicago's GM. Which is why later today, Matt Garza will be hearing the news that he's going to Chicago, the land where World Series dreams (and billy goats) go to die. Even though he wants to ask why, he'll pack his bags and ready himself for a press conference in Chicago.

But...if the Rays already knew how important Garza was to the staff, and the team's still growing legacy, why on Earth would they trade him to the place where he'd never in a million years win a World Series ring? And why trade him in the first place? You're just letting a young star with potential slip out of your hands.

But it could be a lot worse. At least Boston isn't gonna let Beltre leav.....ohhhh yeaaaahhh, riiiighht....damn Rangers (Wait, what am I saying? You can HAVE him!)

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