I could have written about this at 12.30 last night (I was certainly awake), but everyone else was already taking care of it via Twitter, so news of Cliff Lee’s signing to the Philadelphia Phillies spread pretty fast. It’s something like $100MM for 5 years, if my sleepy brain is recalling correctly. This could not have ended any better for Lee (and Mariners fans) if it tried. Lee gets to go back to a team that (I believe) he really wanted to stay with before they sent him to our personal circle of Hell here, he gets the long-term deal he was seeking, and can live out his days as a baseball player with a team that might have a chance of winning a lot in that time period. And it’s almost like he never skipped a beat with the Rangers winning the AL last year. The Phillies now have an incredible starting rotation, and I feel for any NL team. I can almost hear Jayson Werth saying “Aw, man! Come on!” from here. Also (and I know everyone else is saying this, but that is because it’s true), it takes him away from the AL, lessening the threat from other teams, etc.
The Mariners, meanwhile, have signed Ryan Langerhans and three other guys to minor league contracts (I really wish I could say some of this without sounding all plagiarize-y). It seems we may have just effectively replaced Rob Johnson with Chris Jimenez, and Cameron says at the link above that it’s a good move, but it just seems kind of lateral to me. Given Cameron’s comparisons, it looks like we got secondary versions of RJ, Dan Cortes, and Jesus Colume (a name, by the way, that I’d be perfectly happy never hearing again). Hearing phrases like “horrendous…walk rate” (sic), “lack of versatility”, and “don’t count on it” don’t exactly instill confidence, but Cameron seems OK with it, and he’s certainly smarter than I am, so I’m going to relax and see what happens. I got on the plane, we’re going down the runway, this is no time to start running up and down the aisle.
Bits and pieces significant only to me: The Athletics have landed Hideki Matsui, and I am slowly coming to terms with Jack Cust being our guy at DH. I find the short-term contracts hard to deal with as a fan – you can never quite get attached, because you know they’ll be gone soon. Anyway, the A’s didn’t spend a lot for what they’re getting, and I wonder if Matsui is getting tired of apartment hunting. Lyle Overbay (former childhood family friend of my buddy Jessica) has gotten an everyday 1B position in the lower 48 with the Pittsburgh Pirates. Matt Stairs has been nailed down by the Nationals (not too bad, Washington!), and the Cardinals have come to terms (I mean that in more than just the legal way) with their acquisition of Gerald Laird. The Rangers have been linked to Chien-Ming Wang, proving that they are also interested in livening up their local sports writers’ headlines. Yes. I am 12.