Our own “Hat Steve” Action, tepid reporter, has been delivering the goods to us from the floor of the Winter Meetings where he has been hiding among the nutcracker army in the grand floor display at the Convention Center. His missives are heavily encoded and delivered by carrier salmon, so we tend to receive most information long after it is old news, but at the same time, we sent his notice of termination in identical fashion, so at least it’s free labor.
- Confirms that the Orioles declined to try to acquire José Bautista because their “fans don’t like ‘im.” This is a sound move, as somewhere between four- and five-hundred Orioles fans will be present over any given homestand, and they can be quite unpleasant when upset. This is the same basic strategy that the Soviet Union employed in rejecting any would-be defector who was too handsome, causing them to lose the Cute War, and is part of a central Baltimore tenet that explains why they haven’t signed anyone particularly good in years.
- Says Chris Sale simply swaps Sox. MLB.com’s overtaxed, underwhipped puns department breathes a sigh of relief, as they’ll be able to retain most of their hosiery-related lines with minimal reworking. Between this and the Eaton exchange, the White Sox have acquired all 157 of Baseball Priapus’ top-rated prospects not obtained last year by the Yankees, so something’s got to come out of it for them, right? It’d be nice for something to go their way, no?
- Reports, like several other sites, that the “Yankees and Chapman agree.” Full stop. We can assume they mean that the sides agreed to terms on a contract for employment, but maybe they just meant that in a general sense, the Yankees and Aroldis Chapman take sips of beer, sit back, and say, “Yeah, man. I feel the same way.” The terms announced are, of course, larger than the huge sum given by the Giants to Mark Melançon roughly fourteen minutes earlier because when you buy a new car, the Yankees must buy a bigger one, park it next to yours, and hit your car with their car door as they get out. The important takeaway is that baseball Closers — a position that doesn’t really exist the way “pitcher” and “right fielder” exist — are making 16 and 17 million dollars a year.
[Steve attached a little personal complaint about allocating to a person who will appear in fewer than 5% of a team’s innings a sum equal to roughly 8% of its total payroll, and while he does have a point, he ain’t paid for his opinions, so we tossed it to the legal team for the Reasons for Termination file.]
- Announces the Reds’ acquisition of Giancarlo Stanton. Not really, but someone raised an eyebrow for just a second, there.
- Passes along that your contract was picked up. As your representatives in this matter, BNI negotiated on your behalf. We probably should have mentioned it sooner. You were signed by the Saskatchewan Manajeeloos of the Interglacial League for 1,750 rupees a month. You report for your physical tomorrow morning at 6 a.m. Bring your own cup. Good luck.