The Milton Bradley rumor carousel
Winter meetings: today's rumors started that maybe we were going to send Bradley to the Rays, then sending Burrell to the Mets for Luis Castillo, then no we aren't. Then it was sending Bradley to the Royals for Gil Meche, then no we aren't. I guess every team with a bad contract is going to get pinged one way or another this week.
The Ricketts don't want to simply release him, because someone will pick the guy up and use him the next two years on our dime. And who knows, if that someone happens to be a small-market team with little chance of competing for a title, then Bradley might even produce nice numbers, and not attempt to murder anyone. I still maintain that is the cleanest solution, because in any of these your-bad-contract-for-ours that keep coming up, rarely is the return of any value to us.
We don't need Castillo when we have Jeff Baker, Ryan Theriot, and the Great Starlin Castro on the horizon. =) We don't need Pat Burrell when we have the Human Hamstring Pull making $18MM in left field already. We had a Kevin Millwood/Gil Meche-esque figure already, his name was the Marquis du Suck, and HIS contract is up, now. We would have to pay Millwood this year, as well pay something in 2011 for nothing, since Texas would insist on some large moneys. As for Meche, his contract runs 2 more years, same as Bradley.
I just want to kick some puppies when I think we'd be further ahead just keeping Marquis' dumb ass around last year, leaving Fukudome in right and running a Scrappy White Johnson/Fuld platoon. If Hendry told us at this time last year that our 2009 would include Marquis and a lot of Sam Fuld, we would have rioted like prisoners on a full moon. But if we'd done that, we wouldn't have finished any worse, Marquis would be off the books, and the $20 some million that Bradley is wiping his rear with could be used to chase down a leadoff-hitting center fielder not named Marlon Byrd.
But that is revisionist history, the money is spent, and we have to move the malcontent and the rest of the league knows it. The best possiblilty right now is to end up with 2 very expensive years of Gil Meche. Nevertheless, we are going to end up with someone else's useless part, who will sit there, pick his teeth, strikeout pinch hitting a couple of times a week, and haul in the cash that could be used to attract two Quality ballplayers here...but at least he won't make everyone else in the clubhouse walk on eggshells, and at least I won't want to punch him in the ween.
Your 2010 Cubs! Excitement! Catch it!