The managers who voted for the AL Gold Glove awards apparently were those guys managing in 1980, because obviously they didn’t watch any games this year, or check out the stats, or – well, pay attention… Winners included Ichiro Suzuki, Torii Hunter, Adam Jones, Evan Longoria, Derek Jeter, Placido Polanco, Mark Teixeira, Joe Mauer, and Mark Buerhle. [MLB]
Now, Torii Hunter hasn’t been the best centerfielder in the AL for probably five years, but he makes enough flashy catches to earn notice on Baseball Tonight. Baltimore’s Adam Jones and Seattle’s Franklin Gutierrez flew all over the field and made all of the Oriole and Mariner pitchers look better. Hunter was solid – don’t get me wrong – but I think he won it because he had won it before and not because he deserved it.
Jeter and Polanco are both dependable and make few errors, and while Polanco had a good season I might have considered Aaron Hill first. And Jeter? Don’t get me started. How can the guy with the lowest range factor (chances per nine innings) of all shortstops with at least 200 innings in the field get the award??? Elvis Andrus was robbed.
I’m good with the rest – Longoria is great, Tex solidified the Yankees infield, and Joe Mauer is the best catcher in baseball with the bat, and only Yadier Molina is his equal in the field.
Let the bidding begin – followed by cries that MLB executives are deliberately talking about the depressed free agent market… MLB’s future union chief, Michael Weiner, says that execs are anonymously setting the stage through the press for making lowball offers to potential free agents. [ESPN]
The soon-to-be 82 Vin Scully says he’s going to call the 2010 Dodgers season, but might walk away after the year to spend more time with his family. He’s been a Dodger voice for 60 years… [ESPN]
Despite a slew of bad calls in the post-season, GMs aren’t interested in expanding the use of instant replay. Sheesh. [SI]
Mark Cuban didn’t get to buy the Cubs, but he’s interested in finding a good deal. With the McCourts going through the throws of a divorce, the Dodgers might be in his sights. [FoxSports]
John Smoltz says he still wants to pitch – apparently feeling better, and not wanting to go out like he did last year… [FoxSports]
Free Agent Filings… Rich Aurilia (SF), Jerry Hairston (NYY), and Elmer Dessens. Others considering other options, Russell Branyan, who turned down a one-year deal from Seattle, and Jason Kendall.
Happy Birthday! Rabbit Maranville (1891), who was the greatest fielder of his day… Perfectly timed with the announcement of Gold Glove winners… Also Pie Traynor (1898), Hal Trosky (1912), Cory Snyder (1962), Roberto Hernandez (1964 – probably can still hit 90), Damion Easley (1969), Rey Ordonez (1971), Mike Bacsik (1977), Matt Garza (1983).