My apologies for being unable to write Friday. A lot has been said about the Hoffman deal since Thursday, so it's time to bust out the bullet points:
- Michael Street of Baseball Digest Daily says Hoffman will be good but not great, and likely won't stay long in Milwaukee.
- Eric Karabell of ESPN says Hoffman's run as a Brewer may not be pretty, and compares Hoffman to Todd Jones at the end of his career, but thinks he'll still accumulate around 30 saves.
- Bleacher Report thinks Hoffman will post a 2.09 ERA with 42 saves and the Brewers will win 94 games and the NL Central.
- Tyler Maas of Bugs and Cranks is welcoming Hoffman with open arms.
- Dave Cameron of FanGraphs projects Hoffman as a +1 win or less pitcher in 2009, and thinks the Brewers will be back in the market for a closer for 2010.
- Between the Green Pillars has a point/counterpoint on the move, but is generally in favor.
- In-Between Hops likes Trevor Hoffman in the closer's role much more than Jeff Suppan.
- Big League Stew has inducted Hoffman into the Hall of Familiar Players Wearing Unfamiliar Uniforms.
- It is about the money, stupid thinks the combination of John Smoltz, Andy Pettitte and Trevor Hoffman's offseasons may signify the end of sentimentality.
- The Grand National Championships says those who compare this deal to the Gagne deal have a case.
- Brew City Sports wonders if the Brewers are prepared for the extra equipment the Hoffman signing may require.
Let's talk projections for a moment:
- Bleacher Report lists Yovani Gallardo as a breakout candidate for 2009.
- Replacement Level Yankees Weblog projects the Brewers to win 83.4 games and finish third in the Central. They give the Brewers a roughly 24% shot at the postseason. (h/t BBTF)
- In the FanShots, reader jhmoore gives the Brewers a 59% chance of winning 85 or more games.
Two minor league notes today: First, as noted in this Fanshot, Lisa Winston of MILB.com recently interviewed Lorenzo Cain. There's nothing groundbreaking in there, but it gives you a feel for the personality of one of the faster-rising Brewer prospects. Also, as of this writing Omar Aguilar leads Brad Nelson by nine votes in balloting for Community Prospect #13. Balloting closes at noon today, and I'm hoping to open the voting for #14 sometime around noon.
On the hot stove:
Braves: Will reportedly sign Kenshin Kawakami.
Cubs: Are reportedly close to a deal with 40-year-old Japanese pitcher Ken Takahashi.
Dodgers: Signed Shawn Estes to a minor league deal.
Marlins: Have reportedly been talking to Pedro Martinez about coming to Miami.
Mets: Newsday is reporting the Mets will likely sign either Oliver Perez or Derek Lowe. They also signed Tim Redding.
Nationals: Have reportedly packed up shop and left the free agent market.
Orioles: Ken Rosenthal is reporting the team may be interested in signing Jim Edmonds to play first base.
Rangers: Michael Young has reportedly asked to be traded after being told he'll be moving to third base for 2009.
Rays: May be done signing position players but may have interest in Gabe Kapler if B.J. Upton won't be ready by Opening Day.
Red Sox: Have reportedly signed Takashi Saito and re-signed Mark Kotsay.
Royals: Signed Willie Bloomquist to a two year deal worth $3 million.
Tigers: Signed Taiwanese pitcher Fu-Te Ni to a minor league deal.
More on Willie Bloomquist: Just how little value does he have? Joe Posnanski estimates that a lineup of nine Willie Bloomquists would score more than 400 runs less than a lineup of nine Adam Dunns.
How do you define clutch? It appears the folks over at Fire Jim Bowden may need a new formula, because their calculations show Johnny Estrada was the clutchiest National in 2008.
Oh, and I don't know about you, but I would have been glued to my TV for the series premiere of Turnbow: Texas Ranger.