Today's Mug is a little short on time, so my apologies if it seems rushed.
Let's open with a Sabathia Smorgasbord:
- The Dodgers are reportedly getting ready to make an offer.
- The Giants may be getting ready to do so as well.
- The Yankees may be putting a deadline on their offer to Sabathia.
- The White Sox may be considering getting involved.
If the Brewers lose Sheets, they may get better defensively. Baseball Musings' Probabilistic Model of Range ranked Brewer pitchers dead last defensively in 2008, and Ben Sheets was the worst pitcher, scoring 57.52, where 100 is average. Dave Bush was also near the bottom.
As noted in the FanShots, the Brewers added four minor league pitchers to their 40-man roster (Mark Rogers, Omar Aguilar, Cody Scarpetta and Alexandre Periard) to protect them from the Rule 5 Draft. Of the four, only Aguilar strikes me as someone another team would consider keeping on their roster all season. Meanwhile, Paul DePodesta explains why adding a player to your 40-man roster to protect them from the Rule 5 Draft makes it easier to lose them later.
Four Brewer prospects (although one is a former Brewer now) made the TOPPS AA All-Stars: Mat Gamel, Alcides Escobar, Michael Brantley and Angel Salome.
On the flip side, Corey Hart's 2008 OBP was the fourth worst among full time outfielders.
On the hot stove:
Marlins: The team and Hanley Ramirez reportedly have differing opinions on whether or not he should play winter ball. The team has told him to stay home and rest.
Phillies: Could be looking to make a move on Raul Ibanez.
Royals: Acquired Coco Crisp from the Red Sox for RP Ramon Ramirez.
In other news, the owners have agreed to ensure all playoff games go at least nine innings, but won't make a decision on blackout policy until January.
A scheduling note: I'm leaving in a few hours to go hunting for several days, and while I'll be available to write on occasion in the evenings, my mornings will be tied up. Roguejim has agreed to handle the Mug for a couple of days early next week, and I'll be back on Friday. The Mug may take a couple of days off for the holiday in the middle. While I'm gone, I'm still hoping to finish my AFL recap and I'll likely be lurking from time to time.
Oh, and I'm not worried about increasing competition.