Goatriders of the Apocalypse

Stump for Nomah

A few years back, like a big idiot I proclaimed that the Cubs had acquired the second-best shortstop of the organization's history and nothing but good times and sunshine awaited us.  Then the team imploded in September - completely missing the playoffs in the process - and, the following year, Nomar Garciaparra's groin tried to make a runner and left him incapacitated for the bulk of the '05 season.

Since Nomar left the Cubs, he's gone on to do ... eh, not a whole lot.  What once looked like a Hall of Fame career quickly nose-dived into mediocrity, and at the age of 35 Nomar became a backup in the Dodgers clubhouse last year.

Now with just a few weeks to go before the hitters report to Spring Training, the Cubs remain deficient of a backup shortstop and Nomar remains without a job.  Sounds to me like it's a match made in heaven.  Garciaparra can be the go-to guy to spell Lee, Ramirez, and Theriot and become the team's top RH option off the bench.

The questions in this scenario are numerous, though.  Would he take a backup role?  Would he be capable of pinch hitting?  Would he stay healthy even as a backup?

I obviously don't know the answer to any of those questions, but I'll acknowledge that Rich Aurilia wouldn't be a bad alternative option.  He's still hitting the ball well at his late age and he's a career .278 batter as a pinch hitter.  Thing is, I have a feeling that Aurilia is still holding out hopes to start next year while Nomar is on his last leg as a professional.  It's just a thought, anyway, but I am the guy who used to think Nomar was The Next Ernie, and we all know how that bloody disaster turned out.

Update: Apparently Andy Dolan had the same idea back on the 2nd of Feb.  In his own words, "I was just trying to throw Kurt Evans off the scent so he wouldn’t steal this as a blog entry four days later. It didn’t work."

Except I haven't been reading Desipio - or any blog - in a while, so this one can be filed under coincidence ... unless you're paranoid.  A note to Andy: if I'm going to steal ideas from you, I'll at least make sure that they're good ones.  Nomar to the Cubs would be fun, but not necessarily sensible.

Nomar

Word has it the Phil's are talking to him. He is sure if he wants to come back.

Edit- he is not sure if he wants to or can phsyically able to come back.

Nomar Jersey

Kurt,

Just cause you still have a Nomar jersey at the back of your closet doesn't mean...

Nah, I jest. I'm too lazy to look up his stats, but for less than $1 million, I'd do it, unless those stats are really ugly. (He's the next Jim Edmonds!!!!)

Byron

No dice.

I'm not sold on Nomar.

I think we need more help backing up the corners than the middle, which leads to me to Rich Aurilia over Nomar.

Nomar's played the corners

Nomar's played the corners too.

I imagine Nomar could

I imagine Nomar could realistically play every position on the diamond except pitcher and catcher (insert your own jokes) at a defensive level at or above the league average. However, I fear that his bat has all but disappeared.

Side note: why hasn't anyone else been outraged by the fact that the Padres picked up Cub God Hank White at (I believe) $750k? Wasn't his $3m option the reason he's gone? So why not decline the option and negotiate another year at a more realistic salary. Clearly, Hank's worth $250k more than Paul Bako, right?

Fangraphs says he sucks at

Fangraphs says he sucks at 1B. Aurilia on the other hand is decent.

There's also the injury history thing. Does Aurilia have a history of exploding groin muscles or broken spleens?

Nomar wouldn't be bad in a

Nomar wouldn't be bad in a reduced role where he saw time as a super-utility-type player. I think the biggest thing with Nomar is, at this point, Nomar is more of a celebrity or a famous-face than he is a baseball player. Which is why, if I had to guess, I would say if Nomar comes back he will be back in L.A. (if the Dodgers or another California team are willing to offer him a contract). It would be kind of an oxymoron to have one of the biggest injury risks in baseball serving as depth and insurance in case a starter gets hurt, but he isn't a player that the team would acquire to be on the field everyday anyway - so Nomar could fill a role on this team. Still his deteriorating defensive prowess along with his extensive injury history have to be huge concerns to anyone willing to write a check with his name on it and reserve a spot on the 25 man roster for him.

I guess its kind of hard to get excited about guys like Nomar being in the bargain bin when so many other quality players remain in that same bin right next to him. It just kind of goes against anything in one's brain to suggest picking up someone such as Nomar when players like Orlando Hudson and Orlando Cabrera remain, and in no way am I suggesting the cubs are considering signing either, its just the thought process involved. Granted these are far more valuable players at different stages of their careers than Nomar, but when they still remain unsigned it casts a different light on a guy like Nomar or Rich Aurilia. Personally, I would say if Aaron Miles was acquired with the intention to back up 2B, SS, & 3B, then I would let Miles backup those positions while Hoffpauir backs up 1B and the corner OF spots. However, if Miles beats out Fontenot to earn the starting gig at 2B, then the team will have to consider adding utility players to the bench to backup the positions that Miles would have.

I agree that was Hendry's

plan when he signed Miles and unless Fontenot is a bust, Miles will backup 2B, 3B & SS. I don't know what any of these old men we're talking about will cost but we do have Chad Fox that can mash the ball and I really don't see that unless we have more than one of the above three go down at the same time, that signing one of these free agents makes much sense unless it's for a contract like the one Bako signed.

Jake Fox? Chad Fox is a

Jake Fox? Chad Fox is a reliever that pitches with a crazy submarine-style motion, and his arm has exploded annually like 4th of July fireworks the past few seasons.

Sorry

meant Jake Fox.

BAD

Getting Nomar would be a damn travesty. Sign somebaidy else like Aurilia. Signing Nomar would mean I might have to take out a loan to rapair all of the broken things in my house after getting mad at the f****** asshat for making some asinine mistake. he's just too old and injury prone. With his reputaton, it would be kind of hard to believe that he will ever be a starter in the MLB again.

I see you made the MLBTR

I see you made the MLBTR website with this one....nice work

Aurilia is still available

Aurilia is still available and quite a bit better than Nomar. If I recall, Nomar has been worth 0.2 WAR average the past 2 years while Aurilia has been worth 0.8. Not a huge difference, but Aurilia still crushes lefties and Nomar may not have anything at all left.

I'm not contesting that

I'm not contesting that Aurilia is the better option -- I just think that he's probably still vying for a starting gig somewhere.

Wow, really? At what, 1B or

Wow, really? At what, 1B or 3B? Where?

I would imagine his agent is

I would imagine his agent is probably trying to sell him as being capable of starting at either of those positions. I'm not saying that he's a realistic starter, I just suspect that HE would disagree.

Isnt he a former Tulsa

Isnt he a former Tulsa Driller?

I suppose that's possible,

I suppose that's possible, but I'm thinking that he's probably accepted he'll make about a million bucks next year and probably doesn't care too much how it's made. I could be wrong though.

It's impossible for us to

It's impossible for us to say for certain, but I think that if he was shopping himself around to be a backup he would've been a no-brainer for multiple teams by now. Ironically, he'd probably make more money as a backup than he would as a starter, if only because there would likely be more bidders.

Except that the teams we've

Except that the teams we've heard that have had interest in him lately have interest in him as a utility player, Kurt. He may be holding out for that job as a regular, but I don't think he's going to get one unless he's OK going to a place that has little chance of contending.

Despite the numbers, I'd probably say Nomar is more likely to be holding for that job as a regular than Aurilia, but that's just an opinion.

I don't know. Offer the guy enough money and he'll take whatever role you offer him.

Stump for Nomah

Would make a great "Vote for Pedro" like T-shirt.

Red type. White shirt. Irreverant. Funny.

SO I guess I'm all for Nomar as long as it validates the Shirt.

Kinda silly and stupid. Iadmit. But How long does one want to debate Nomar vs Aurillia anyway? I mean really.....

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