From this morning’s Houston Chronicle: (Richard Justice)
(click on names to see stats)
“WAITING for Carlos … ”
Date of birth: April 24, 1977
Place of Birth: Manati, Puerto Rico
Hometown: Manati, Puerto Rico
HT: 6-1 WT: 190
MLB Seasons: 6
Drafted by Kansas City in 1995 (2nd round)
Based on conversations with club officials, the Astros appear ready to offer a six- or seven-year deal worth around $13.5 million per season.
New York newspapers have reported that the Yankees will offer $13 million a year. The Cubs will also be serious players, but the Angels, who are believed to be Beltran’s first choice, may not be interested. Until Beltran gives the Astros an answer, every other significant move is on hold. The Astros have been told that the Carlos Beltran sweepstakes are “yours to lose.” Agent Scott Boras may have told other teams similar things, but the words have impact nevertheless.
Now about a timetable. There doesn’t appear to be one. Teams may be invited to submits bid when baseball’s winter meetings begin this weekend, but there’s no timetable for a decision by Beltran on where he’ll play next season.
If he really wants the 10-year, $200-million deal that has been thrown around by baseball officials, he’s in for a long wait….”
- comment by me:
I really really really doubt that even George will give Carlos (or anyone else) a 10 year contract. I really really really doubt that any team will pay ANY ballplayer 20 mill/yr. Not even Albert Pujols, one of the top 5 ballplayers in the NL and 3 years younger than Carlos, got that much.
Personally, I think that the offer is a great one because the cost of living here is low and there are no state taxes, which makes the offer more valuable by at least 1 – 2 mill/yr. Also, any team who offers more than 4 years is taking a great risk because contracts are insurable for only 3 years.
More from the Chronicle: “Here are some of the other Astros comings and goings:
A trade for Tampa Bay center fielder Jose Cruz, Jr., has been discussed. He’s a Houston native and the son of Astros legend Jose Cruz. He had 21 home runs and 78 RBIs last season and could fill in for Lance Berkman or play center if Beltran signed elsewhere. “
- comment by me:
as I’ve said many times, we LUUUUUUUV our homies. Jose Cruz, Sr. is our first base coach and one of the most popular Astros players of all time. Jr. was a star at Rice with Lance Berkman. Jose Jr. is a Gold Glove fielder, even if his bat isn’t anywhere near as good as Lance, but we sure nuff could use a great glove in the outfield. I would love to see an OF of Jason Lane, Carlos and Cruz. Of course, the problem is, what do we do when Lance comes back? I HATE to see Jason Lane wasting away on the bench… If we can’t sign Carlos, we sure nuff do need someone with a decent glove out there. I would like Carl Crawford (yet ANOTHER homie – well, born here) even more than Cruz, but fat chance getting him in his first arb year…
More Chronicle: “Considered making a one-year offer to free-agent center fielder Steve Finley. He wants two years.”
- comment by me: 2 years for a 40 year old CF with a VERY negative UZR? (like – 24) I don’t THINK so. I don’t even want ONE year.
More Chronicle: “Refused to give Jeff Kent the second year he’s seeking. With Chris Burke on the threshold of the big leagues, the Astros probably won’t offer Kent more than a one-year deal. The Cubs and Tigers may have interest.”
- comment by me: I want to see Chris Burke out there. I don’t want us to keep blocking our cheap, good young players for overly expensive veterans.
More Chronicle: “Received encouraging reports about righthander Wade Miller’s shoulder. Team doctors won’t know for sure until Miller gets on a mound in spring training, but recent tests show his pain has decreased significantly. If Miller is healthy and Roger Clemens decides to pitch another season, they’d join Andy Pettitte, Roy Oswalt and Brandon Backe to give the Astros potentially an outstanding rotation.”
- comment by me: There are TWO giant ifs – I think we need to offer Miller a one year incentives laden contract with an option for next year. Last year, he started 15 games, was 7 – 7 over 88.2 IP with a 3.35 ERA. Decent, BUT, I don’t want to flush even 3 mill down the drain. Miller is arb eligible, but was injured most of last year, but his 3.4 mill salary can only be cut by 20% at most in arb.
More Chronicle – “Discussed making an offer to Houston native Woody Williams. He’s a free agent after winning 11 games for the Cardinals last season. He’s 38 years old, but keeps himself in top physical shape. He’s one of the real good guys in the game. “
- comment by me: I would love to see Woody (another homie – he’s from U of Houston – selected in the 28th round in 1988 by the Blue Jays) as our 5th guy, maybe if Roger really retires this time and Miller can’t pitch, our 4th guy. He’s better than anyone we have in our system, as I’ve explained in the last 2 entries. I read that Woody wants to come home now and in fact, he wanted to come home the last time he was a FA, but he was too expensive at that time.
More Chronicle – “Team officials are less optimistic that lefthander Carlos Hernandez will ever have the same velocity he had before undergoing rotator-cuff surgery almost two years ago.
- comment by me: well, duhhhhhhhhhhh. After 2 years of rehab, he is throwing in the low to mid 80s and his location isn’t real too good. Only one QS of his 9 starts last year and that was his only start that lasted over 5 innings – in fact, he only pitched 45 innings. On the other hand, he IS only 24 years old and he may just need more time. He could, of course, turn himself into a Jamie Moyer crafty lefty throwing slow slop and winning anyway…
More Chronicle: “Righthander Taylor Buccholz, one of the organizations top prospects, recently underwent a surgical cleanup procedure on his right shoulder. No significant damage was found, and Buccholz should be ready for the start of spring training.”
- comment by me: well, he wasn’t exactly ace material last year, so we’ll have to see how he does…
More Chronicle: “Possibly signing former Angels setup man Ben Weber to a minor league contract. He was one of the American League’s best relievers between 2001 and 2003, but pitched just 18 games last season because of carpal tunnel syndrome. He was a key member of the bullpen that helped the Angels win the 2002 World Series. He’s also a Houston native.” (actually, from Port Arthur, home of Janis Joplin – he was selected from U of Houston in the 20th round in 1991 by the Blue Jays – they seem to like U of H pitchers, don’t they…) “If Weber is healthy, he could help filling those innings between the starter and closer Brad Lidge.”
- comment by me: this sounds REAL good. Minor league contracts are cheap and if Weber really has recovered from his problem, we have a great chance of having a good, cheap reliever. We NEED good relievers, as I said before, and I hope this works out. Another homie, too.
More Chronicle – “No decision has been made on where to play Craig Biggio in 2005. Depending on what others do, he may be asked to be a super utility man at second base and in the outfield. ”
- comment by me: PLEEEEEEEEEEEASE do not play Biggio in the OF full time – the worst fielding grades of any full time LF (all measuring scales) in the ML. I think that signing him at all was a silly waste of money, but I guess Unca Drayton did it for publicity…