Welcome back to fun time.
Let's open today with a Sabathia Smorgasbord. MLB Trade Rumors is reporting that the Brewers are expecting a counteroffer from CC Sabathia, once he's received offers from other teams. I was worried that counteroffer had come early when I saw this story claiming the Brewers had offered Sabathia $147 million. Turns out the story was from a newspaper in Australia, and $100 million American is about $147 million Australian.
Buster Olney says the Giants, who still owe about $100 million to Barry Zito, should pursue Sabathia anyway. Dodger Thoughts takes a look at Sabathia's workload. Beyond the Box Score thinks Sabathia is worth $26 million next season.
In the previous link, Beyond the Box Score rates Ben Sheets' value for 2008 at $14 million. He doesn't earn a penny of that by getting hit by pitches, however, as Recondite Baseball notes that Sheets has the tenth most plate appearances of any active pitcher who's never been plunked. It's probably a good thing he hasn't: a bruise in the wrong place could sideline Sheets for months.
If you missed the news over the weekend, the Brewers have hired Willie Randolph to serve as bench coach and promoted Bill Castro to pitching coach. I did a two-part profile on 2009 Brewer coaches over the weekend, and have a third post lined up for around noon today. Also, the New York Times notes that Randolph can get out of his deal with the Brewers if he gets the opportunity to manage the Mariners.
It's already time to take a look into the crystal ball for 2009. Beyond the Box Score has "Marcel" leaderboards for 2009. I use the quotes because the Marcels are Tangotiger's prediction tool and he didn't actually sign off on these numbers. With that said, the predictions have Prince Fielder and Ryan Braun tied for third in baseball in home runs, Braun fifth and Fielder tenth in slugging, Braun sixth and Fielder eighth in isolated power, and Fielder and Braun tied for tenth in RAA. On the pitching side, CC Sabathia projects to lead baseball in innings pitched, finish fourth in ERA and second in strikeouts.
Three notes on Mike Cameron today: First, Baseball Musings' Probabilistic Model of Range ranks Brewer centerfielders eighth in all of baseball in 2008, but ranks Cameron slightly below average, at 99.16. The Boston Herald is reporting the Yankees are not optimistic about being able to acquire Mike Cameron. And, in a somewhat related note, Baseball Musings dispels the notion that center fielders can pad their fielding stats by hogging fly balls.
I'm not sure who else they would have given it to, but the Brewers officially announced on Sunday that Mat Gamel is the organization's Minor League Player of the Year.
He wasn't listed in today's Fall/Winter League Update because he hasn't appeared in a game yet, but Mike Rivera is playing for the Santurce Cangrejeros (Kangaroos Crab Hunters) in the Puerto Rican Winter League.
Around the hot stove:
Astros: Reportedly are no longer, or maybe never were, a candidate to trade for Jake Peavy.
Braves: Rumor has it Jake Peavy might reject a trade to Atlanta because the players sent to San Diego would weaken the Braves' shot at winning in 2009.
Cardinals: Are no longer pursuing a trade for Matt Holliday.
Marlins: Could be working on a deal to send Scott Olsen to Atlanta.
Nationals: Chad Cordero is reportedly drawing interest from the Angels, Mets, Rangers and Tigers.
Padres: Could be working on a deal to send Khalil Greene to Baltimore.
Of course, if major league free agents and trades are too rich for your blood, you can always be a player in the minor league free agent market. Al has an All Star team of minor league free agents for you to consider.
Thanks to Kirbir, who nominated this blog for the 2008 Web Log Awards. If you're so inclined, feel free to follow the link and second the nomination of this blog and any other sports blogs you feel deserve it.
Oh, and I'm not usually a fan of blue cheese, but this steak with blue cheese sauce and this spinach blue cheese pasta recipe have made me rethink my opinions.