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Quick one today. Let’s get to it:

  • The Giants’ youth movement is well under way. After re-upping Omar Vizquel, Sabean and company signed Aaron Rowand for five years and $60 million. The money is not the issue, in this case. Rowand is coming off a season that he will be hard-pressed to ever match. If he reverts to his normal level, he will be a good-but-not-great player on a disorganized (at best) team. And at 30 years old, he is not, as Sabean claims, “coming into his prime.” He is, incredibly enough, the youngest player in their everyday lineup… by three years.
  • On the other hand, I like the Cubs’ signing of Kosuke Fukudome. They are a win-now team that just filled a significant gap. And it’s possible this deal could be even better than I originally would have thought.
  • Speaking of the NL Central, I hate counting any team out, but Ed Wade seems fairly delusional. This is not a good Astros team, nor does Miguel Tejada make it one. You have to watch what you say when it comes to this division, but I’m going to summarily reject the Astros and Pirates as contenders until further notice. That Houston gave up any long term value for two years of a declining player is a pretty obvious mistake, barring significant moves going forward.
  • I’ve said this before: it makes more sense for the Pirates to trade Freddy Sanchez than it does for them to trade Jason Bay. Unless they can come away with a stud prospect or two (doubtful), the risk is not worth the potential reward if Bay bounces back with a big year. Sanchez, on the other hand, is at his peak value, and may never be able to return as much in a deal as he could right now. Public relations nightmare aside, it is the best baseball move this team could make.
  • I’m curious what the market is for Mike Cameron. He’s a bit older than the other center fielders that had been available, and could end up with a shorter deal. Considering he’s likely a better bet than Rowand in the short run, a two year deal would be a steal for any team with a pressing need in center (Atlanta? Philadelphia?).
  • Last night, ESPN.com reported some early details from the Mitchell report. These included some of the suggestions for the future, such as, “Improve player education about performance-enhancing drugs.” If this video is part of that curriculum, you can bet that there will be hoards of major league players looking for undetectable steroids.

Feedback? Write a comment, or e-mail the author at shawn(AT)squawkingbaseball.com

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  1. on December 13th at 01:43 pm
    robustyoungsoul said:

    Question - how did Torii Hunter get 90 mil over 5 years and Rowand just 60 over 5? Andruw Jones even got 18 mil a year like Hunter, just over 2 years. I thought for sure Rowand would get paid more.

    Their career numbers compare pretty favorably.




    They all play pretty solid defense although my guess would be Rowand is the least of the three in that category, but still… Hunter had an above average year for him last year also and got paid like crazy. Last year wasn’t even Rowand’s best year, 2004 he posted better hitting numbers. I just don’t understand the money on these deals. Either somebody overpaid like crazy or somebody got a deal.