Hey all, I'm back. My apartment is still in the dark, but my in-laws got power this weekend so I'm bumming over with them for now. I know you were all waiting with baited breath for me, so let's get on to the baseball news.
The Orioles have had a heck of a time finding a new General Manager, with many candidates choosing to drop out of the running. Finally, it appears they found someone willing to take the job: Dan Duquette, the old General Manager for the Expos and Red Sox. He's been out of baseball for nearly 10 years, but considering that the Orioles had slim pickings for their GM spot, Duquette seems a fine choice. Of course, who knows how much freedom he'll be given under Peter Angelos.
If you're looking for a bit of schadenfreude, Grant Brisbee acquired some taped phone conversations from the O's GM search and transcribed them. Based on the things said about Angelos, this may not be too far off.
How do teams value players? Do they value star players more, or do they prefer to diversify their rosters? Do they pay more for players that will put them over the top and into playoff contention? Dave Cameron explored this subject again the other day, and it's a good refresher course for everyone going into the offseason.
Along those lines, a user at Amazin' Avenue wrote up a detailed FanPost on how much Jose Reyes is worth. As pointed out by Tom Tango, most things people are saying about Reyes this offseason were said about Carl Crawford last offseason. That's not a mark against Reyes or the analysis used, but it's simply a reminder how ridiculous Crawford's season was.
Kevin and Scott over at Rays Prospects have a weekly podcast together, and I recommend subscribing and listening. This week, they talk about the top free agents on the market, minor league FAs that might interest the Rays, and the Arizona Fall League.
In the wake of the marketing hubbub started by Foster, the Tampa Tribune hired an outside firm to estimate the Rays' marketing expenditures over the past few seasons. Based on their data, the Rays have spent less on marketing each year down the line, and less than other teams in similar situations.
So it turns out Foster was right to a degree; the Rays are spending less, and could theoretically be doing more with marketing. But I'm still not ready to state that this was purposefully done to sabotage attendance and force a new stadium, as we simply have no way of knowing their internal discussions or total budget per year.