Friday, December 10, 2004

So they had a press conference and everything. It's for real. Let's take a look at the regular lineup, and how the Win Shares would shape up if we had this year's lineup in 2004:

         2004                    2005

Pos Player WS Pos Player WS
C Molinas 16 C Molinas 16
1B 4-3/Kotch 17 1B 4-3/Kotch 17
3B Figgins 20 3B McPherson 1
MIF Kennedy 13 MIF Eckstein 9
MIF Eckstein 9 MIF Figgins 20
LF Guillen 21 LF Anderson 15
CF Anderson 15 CF Father Time 18
RF Guerrero 29 RF Guerrero 29
DH Glaus/Fish 12 DH DaVanon 10
IF Quinlan 8 IF Quinlan 8
OF DaVanon 10 OF Rivera 14
Okay, so McPherson should be good for more than 1 Win Share. And Kennedy will hopefully return in time to improve the middle infield picture. But as bad as this signing is, as long as McPherson does all right and everyone can stay reasonably healthy, the team shouldn't be too much worse off.

Of course, whether or not Finley can really put up 18 WS again is a matter of debate. If he declines just a bit, maybe Garret Anderson can bounce back and pick up some of that slack.

The real wild card is, of course, Kendry Morales. There are many "if"'s and "whether"'s involved.

Well, I'm just trying to take a look at the bright side. If I had my druthers, the opening lineup would be:

1. Figgins, SS
2. Eckstein, 2B
3. Vlad, RF
4. Garret, DH
5. Father Time, LF
6. Kotchman, 1B
7. McPherson, 3B
8. Molinas, C
9. Erstad, CF

So if Morales tears up spring training, I don't know what I would do. Maybe he gets the first base job and Kotch gets traded. And I'm not so sure a LF platoon of DaVanon and Rivera wouldn't outperform Finley with the bat and glove ... or maybe Morales would DH and Garret would go to LF. This is, of course, in my fantasy world where Finley doesn't have to start.

That's what I hate about the Finley signing the most, probably. It blocks a lot of spots, but does so with a guy who, all evidence indicates, can't even handle his purported position very well anymore.

Anyway, as this will never happen, if the roster doesn't change at all, I predict:

1. Figgins, MIF
2. Erstad, 1B
3. Garret, LF
4. Vlad, RF
5. Father Time, CF
6. DaVanon/Rivera/Morales, DH
7. McPherson, 3B
8. Molinas, C
9. Eckstein, MIF

Oh, well, it could be a lot worse ...

"a lot worse"? It could be worse, yes, but I don't see how it could be "a lot" worse than it is now.
I'm seriously considering heading to Tempe and going all Gilooly on Finley's knees during spring training.

The Finley signing made the BPro mock winter meeting tonight a lot less fun. First some assole traded Randy Johnson before I had a chance to better the last offer, then all the free agent shortstops and pitchers were gone before I even had a chance to sign someone. I ended up dealing Juan Rivera for Craig Wilson (because they need another corner infielder/outfielder), and signing that Japanese guy who throws the gyro ball in exchabge for 5 years/$52.5MM and Brendan Donnelly. Let's hope Stoneman does a little better.
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