Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
January 26, 2009
BASEBALL: Cold Stove

In baseball, as in politics, my blog posts generally come from two sources: one, I have ideas that I put into research and produce a longer or more labor-intensive end product; two, I react to the news of the day, to what I read online, get emailed to me or talk about.

I've got some of the former on the burner at present, but the latter has really been slim pickings lately. It feels like the pilot light went out on the hot stove league this year. You can read up on Ben Sheets' medical report, but I'm not a doctor so your guess is as good as mine. After carrying a heavy workload from age 23-25, Sheets averaged just 21 starts and 135 IP a year from 2005-2007. Last year was supposed to be his salary drive and he still fell a hair short of 200 IP and finished badly. Sheets is pretty much the classic guy who will be either a bargain or a total waste of money because it's impossible to put a reliable value on his health.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 12:50 PM | Baseball 2009 | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

Don't you think, with the right contract Sheets has a huge potential upside? MLB history is littered with guys who started out as horses, experienced injury/ineffectiveness in their late 20s and came back on in their 30s to be horses all over again. Curt Schilling would be a good example of this. I mean, if you could get Sheets for some incentive laden deal, wouldn't it be worth the flyer? You're not worried about his stuff. You're worried about the durability but he should, in theory, be coming into his most durable time. I sort of can't believe he doesn't have a job right now (which likely means the money isn't right yet).

Posted by: jim at January 26, 2009 5:41 PM

jim, Sheets is like the guy everyone goes to your fantasy draft thinking the will get a bargain on. 30+ teams think they will steal him, but that will ultimately lead to a correction, unless they all think he's currently injured, which he may be.

Posted by: Jerry at January 26, 2009 10:48 PM

My point is if you can land him with a nothing to lose sort of contract (1 year deal, low base, incentives galore) what's the downside risk? If he can't go a team is out 2-3 million (if he's injured a percentage is covered by insurance). If he can go though you get a guy with big league experience, good stuff and moxie enough to hold down a 3 spot in a decent rotation. Maybe he's not going to sign a contract like that but at this point it seems he may not be offered anything but that. If the Sox didn't already have 8 starting pitchers on their roster I would hope we would get him.

Posted by: jim at January 27, 2009 11:26 AM
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