Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Say What?

The calendar pages turn and the seasons roll by. Stadiums are demolished and new ones built. Players and managers come and go. So do broadcasters. But for more than a quarter of a century one constant remains: Dallas Green’s big mouth.

We can all stop worrying about Pat Burrell now that Green is on his case. While most of us mistakenly thought the former phenom’s problems were breaking stuff away and hard stuff inside, Green has put his finger on the real problem: too much fun. That’s right, sports fans, Pat Burrell is just too good looking and too rich for his and the Phillies’ own good. Or as Green so eloquently put it, "It's neat to have money, it's neat to have good looks, and it's neat to have broads all over you.”

Ever on point to say nothing of pc; that's Dallas Green. Now, with that out of the way, we can expect Burrell to respond with Triple Crown numbers to Green’s public calling out. Thanks, Dallas, he needed that!

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As I’ve been saying for months, Aaron Rowand remains the most likely player to be dealt by the Phils prior to the start of Spring Training. Among his many reported suitors are his former team, the White Sox, and the Texas Rangers. Will someone please tell Pat Gillick there are 28 other major league teams in North America besides the Rangers? What, exactly, is Gillick’s fixation with them? Can he look back over the last year and reasonably say he has done well in his dealings with them? The last time I looked the Phillies no longer had one former Ranger on their 40-man roster.

With the emergence of Shane Victorino last season, the Phils can afford to let Rowand go. Victorino is the superior fielder with a vastly better arm who will hit as least as well as Rowand if not better and generate more excitement on the base paths. He has already shown he can crash into as many walls as Rowand but hopefully with better outcomes.

The White Sox just re-signed Scott Podsednik to a one year deal, but they would love to have Rowand back by most accounts. Sox GM Kenny Williams has pitching to trade, especially starting pitching, which would fit nicely if another rumor, that the Phils are shopping John Lieber, turns out to be true.

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Jim Salisbury notes in today's Inquirer that "The Phils plan to interview Jeff Maier for an entry-level scouting or front-office position tomorrow. Maier, 23, became a household name in 1996 when he interfered with a ball at Yankee Stadium, turning a Derek Jeter fly ball into a home run in a playoff game between the Yankees and Orioles. Gillick was the Orioles' GM at the time.

Maier, a North Jersey native, graduated from Wesleyan University in May as the school's all-time hits leader. He had a scouting internship in the Cape Cod League last summer."

Now, as a Wesleyan graduate myself, I am always delighted to see a fellow alum do well in the world. But I am also Baltimore born and bred and was for 35 years a die-hard Orioles fan. So, you can see my loyalties in this matter are conflicted. Let's just leave it at this: I hope Maier is a better judge of talent than he is of fly balls.


RickSchuBlues said...

Not to rub it in, Tom, but after all, Maier *did* catch that fly ball, didn't he?

You know, thank god for Dallas Green. In this day and age of tight-lipped spin doctors, at least one member of the Phillies' organization is possessed with an absolute lack of tact. I'm being tongue-in-cheek here, of course, but I mean, this guy's a riot. I wish he'd give the postgame press conferences and not Manuel. The most fascinating, inappropriate things still come out of this anachronism's mouth. When I saw the headline "Green challenges Burrell", I was almost certain the term 'girly-man' would be included somewhere. Maybe they just left that part out.

I'm afraid you're probably right about Rowand, who ultimately was a disappointment last year. I love bear-down players of his ilk, but he really isn't much of a player, and if he's the only thing they have to trade...then they probably ought to do it. Especially when they might actually get a pitcher out of it, from the White Sox.

Tom Goodman said...

RSB: And I thought you were a friend. Yes, he did catch the ball but at the time he was not under contract with any major league team let alone his prospective college nine and should have kept his glove to himself. You should go to the NY Times site today and look him up. Very interesting article on him and how he has clearly prepared for a life in baseball. I am fascinated he is trying to gain entry via the scout route, however. I guess he just loves that level of contact with the game. Admirable kid despite his history. I hope the Phils give him a job.

As for Green, I have written ad nauseum that the Phillies' debt to him has been paid in full many times over. He is nothing but poison. God knows what he contributes in private!!?? As far as anyone can tell, his 1980 team won in spite of him not because of him. They loathed him to a man.