| First round selection Moises Alou topped the list of three year signees. He was joined by second rounder Jason Kendall,centerfielder Mike Cameron, firstbaseman Paul Konerko and thirdbaseman Corey Koskie. Free Agent Greg Maddux was earlier signed for three years.|
Players who upped for two years included: Ricky Gutierrez,Frank Catalonotto,Rolando Arrojo, and Frank Castillo. Pedro Martinez garnered a two year deal during startup free agency. (Wow, thats way too many Cubs and Red Sox)
Fourteen players were given only one year to show what they can do. Closer Derek Lowe was the most significant of these players. The others were:Todd Zeile,Paul Wilson,Makoto Suzuki,Russ Springer,Tim Salmon,Orlando Palmeiro,Jim Mecir,Mike Holtz,Tony Graffanino,John Franco,Carlos Febles,Alberto Castillo and Luis Alicea.
Nine players were signed to minor league contracts and put on a ferry to AAA Block Island. Some were sent there as insurance against injury and usage problems and others because it is felt they have bright futures. These players were headlined by starting pitcher Jason Marquis and secondbaseman Alfonso Soriano. The seven other AAA players are: Randy Winn, John "Wayback" Wasdin, Mike Magnante, Travis Lee, Matt LeCroy, Raul Ibanez and Brian Cooper. 9-01-01.
South Kingstown,RI-- The East Matunuck Seagulls made a big splash in startup free agency today. The Gulls ownership opened their wallets to the tune of thirty million dollars. $30 M is the maximum amount allowed under the rules of the brand new Billy Goat Baseball League.
Greg Maddux is on his way to the Rhode Island shore after signing a three year deal worth 16.52 million. Maddux's press conference was interrupted by word of the signing of Pedro Martinez. When asked about his new teammate Maddux was thrilled, "It takes some of the pressure off me knowing he (Pedro) will be here as well. I'm not concerned about who is the number one starter, I just want to help the team win games." It was later revealed that Martinez's deal was for two years, 13.48 million.
Maddux and Martinez were tops on the teams shopping list. League members were allowed to submit bids on 20 top players. At first management was concerned that their two most sought after players would sign elsewhere but after the signings of Kevin Brown and Ivan Rodriguez by SoCal the coast was clear for the Gulls.
The rest of the teams roster will be assembled in the startup draft which has already begun with the selection of Manny Ramirez by Great Lakes. The draft order was determined by the amount of money spent in free agency. Teams that spent less picking first. That meant East Matunuck would pick near the end of the first round. The club was fortunate enough to win the lottery among teams who spent all thirty million and will have the twentieth pick in the first round. The team owns the twentieth pick in each odd numbered round and the fifth pick in each even numbered round.
Alou Rd 1 20th-- Moises wasn't someone I was really considering but the way the
draft went I think it was a good pick. He hits well against left and right handed pitching
and is having a good season.|
Who I was considering:Chipper Jones (I was worried that was just me wanting Maddux and Jones but it would have been my pick.) I also was thinking of Jeff Kent and might have been so bold as to pick Tim Hudson if he fell.
|Jason Kendall Rd 2 29th--
Jason's OBP and the fact that he didn't have a plus throwing arm cinched the selection. I
see him as the teams #2 hitter but could lead off if necessary.|
Who I was considering: Charles Johnson, I thought he had less "name recognition" than Alou and would fall to this pick. Edgar Martinez, he just hits, 1b 5e11 scared me off some. Darrin Erstad, great leadoff hitter for this year (2000 stats) but something about his 99 and 01 seasons put an end to his chances.
|Tim Salmon Rd 3 68th--
He's having a bad year this year but he had in my opinion the best available card. Hits for
power and a decent OPB, he's not a 4 in OF and has a minus arm.|
Who I was considering: Omar Vizquel (went 66th), sure he's on the downside but has good OBP vs RHP and you cant argue with 1e3 at SS. Rafael Furcal (went 65th), has good OBP card and speed plus had 2 ratings at both 2b and ss to provide flexability in the draft and season.
|Mike Cameron Rd 4 77th
I wasn't really sure about this pick but I found him to be one of few acceptable options left
in CF. He's a 2 in CF,has a good speed,and a minus arm. Long time between picks now so
we'll see how it goes.|
Who I was considering: Wasn't much debate this time, there were players I liked but postional scarcity won out. Still bummed over Furcal and Vizquel thought I could get one of them and Salmon in this group of picks.
|Dereck Lowe Rd 5 116th--
The run on closers was well underway so I wanted to get one. Wish Derek was having a
better 2001 but I like his 2000.|
Who I was considering:Billy Koch, just a step below Lowe in 2000. Paul Abbott, I probably should have taken Abbott here and went for a closer in Rd 6. Corey Koskie.
| Corey Koskie Rd 6
125th--The earlier picks of Chavez and Lowell made this pick for me. I also felt like I
needed to add a lefty bat.|
Who I was considering:Matt Morris having a great 2001 and is useful as a reliever in 2000. David Wells, I thought he had the best available card with high innings.
|Paul Konerko Rd 7 164th-- I think I jumped the gun a bit
here. I started to get worried about getting a decent 1st baseman but judging how far
others fell, this wasn't the right pick here. He is having a good 2001 though.|
Who I was considering: Rey Sanchez, still looking for that good fielding shortstop even though his hitting isn't there. Ron Belliard, decent fielding and hitting second baseman who is doing OK in 2001.
|Frank Castillo Rd 8 173rd-- I needed to jump in and get a 3rd
starter at this point. He'll do well for us in 2000 and is OK in '01.|
Who I was considering:Belliard again. Also I took a look at "El Duque", Orlando Hernandez. I thought Belliard would survive and that Hernandez's non existant '01 would help him slide.
|Ricky Gutierrez Rd 9 212th-- With Belliard gone and many
other quality middle infielders being selected, I had to have a 2nd baseman or
Who I was considering:Mike Bordick and his 20 HRs at SS. In the end the better On Base potential, slightly better e rating, and better '01 won out.
|Jim Mecir Rd 10 221st--Needed to get a quality setup reliever
with a good number of innings. Jim fit the bill although he's useless after this
Who I was considering: Sidney Ponson, thought he would have been a good fit as starter #4 here. Mark McLemore, was going to settle for his card this year (and good D at 2b) and have his speed and versatility for next.
|Luis Alicea Rd 11 260th--Had to get a second baseman.
Alicea seemed to be the best option for this year anyway. He's a switch hitter, which is a
Who I was considering: Greg Swindell, was looking for a lefty out of the pen to go with Lowe and Mecir but Greg went just before me. I was also hoping to maybe grab Julio Lugo here but he too was gone.
|Paul Wilson Rd 12 269th--His innings are limited and he's not
useful beyond this year but his card was too good to pass up. I think I have a decent
bullpen going now. Hopefully I won't need it too much.|
Who I was considering: Steve W Sparks and Tony Armas Jr. I needed a 4th starter. I liked Sparks' card for this year if he had more innings, he'd have been the choice. Armas I like for the future but I'm geared more towards the here and now at this point.
|Makoto Suzuki Rd 13 308th--Had to grab a 4th Starter this
time around. Not enthralled with this pick but felt it was best I could do.He should be OK
but he's definately on the one year plan.|
Who I was considering: Rolando Arrojo, he could have filled the 4th starter role and has a good '01 going. Julian Tavares, more innings and he would have been the pick. Paul Shuey, pretty good reliever to be left at this point.
|Rolando Arrojo Rd 14 317th--Was considering him for the
pick before, so with the other contenders to be selected (Shuey,Tavares) gone this was an
easy pick to make. Combines an acceptable '00 with a decent '01.|
Who I was considering:Cal Eldred, again lack of innings combined with no '01 let him out of consideration. Roger Cedeno, he could have pinch ran this year and had a bigger role next.
|John Franco Rd 15 356th--Finally saw my way to adding a
lefty to the pen. Franco can get the job done vs LHB and has closer rating in case of
emergency. Innings aren't plentiful but I expect alot of less than one inning appearances
from him anyway.|
Who I was considering: Matt Anderson, thought he'd slip to my next pick. Like his upside for '01 and beyond. Alex Cora, although I already had my shortstop I was willing to go for him if he was here just for his 2 range rating.
|Frank Catalonotto Rd 16 365th--He's a good backup/pinch
hitter for this year, has a slight clutch advantage and should be more versatile having
played outfield in '01.|
Who I was considering:Tim Crabtree, he's good against RHB has innings so he could get out a tough righty and help with mop up duites. Scott Strickland, he's useful in '00 and figures to have a more prominent role with the Expos with Urbina gone.
|Todd Zeile Rd 17 404th--He's a little better than Konerko vs
LHP and provides some power off the bench. Although I like Konerko, the fact I could
get Zeile so much later kind of makes me wish I'd gone another route.|
Who I was considering:Greg Zaun, he went a few picks earlier. He would have provided a nice bat off the bench combined with being a switch hitter and a catcher. He also has second base on his card, although he's really bad there.
|Travis Lee Rd 18 413th--Pretty much a speculation pick here.
He could be our 4th or 5th outfielder but would rather keep him in minors this year.
Hoping for contribution from him as tradable commodity or in years 2 and 3 on the squad.
Who I was considering:Juan Castro, he's a versatile fielder and could have backed up 3 positions. Kerry Ligtenberg, he could have helped the pen in this spot but (start playing the broken record) inning were a consideration. Ron Gant, he's tough on lefties and could have provided power off the bench.
|Carlos Febles Rd 19 452nd--His role figures mostly to be as a
pinch runner and defensive replacement. He also provides a quality bunter on the bench.
Don't think enough of his upside to want to sign him for more than just the one
Who I was considering:Scott Schoenweis, main reason for not picking him was I didn't want to have to spell his name on my instructions.(He actually was gone before the pick.)Darren Lewis, I have been having poor luck hoping players would slide the nine picks more than once and this is no exception.
|Orlando Palmiero Rd 20 461st--Orlando fills the 4th
outfielder role on the club. Although he's not a 1 defensively like Lewis, he gets on base
more and will fill his role just fine. He is an excellent bunter and hit & run
Who I was considering: Todd Van Poppell, still need two bullpen guys at this point. Hopefully a righty and a lefty. Aaron Fultz. Wiki Gonzales to be the backup catcher.
|Mike Holtz Rd 21 500th--Mike will be the second lefty in the
pen. I don't expect he'll see many righties this season. He'll help the club as long as he
stays in his role.|
Who I was considering:Jason Marquis, not quite sure what I was thinking holding out on Marquis to grab Holtz. (especially considering my past luck waiting the nine picks)
|Jason Marquis Rd 22 509th--Whew! I like Jason's potential to
help this club next year and the year after. Maybe it is my Braves bias showing through but
I like Jason. Will remain in the minors this year.|
Who I was considering: Jason Marquis. Actually gave Jose Mesa some thought but I really wanted Jason. With so few options left I think I'll discontinue "who I was considering" now.
|Tony Graffanino Rd 23 548th--Needed a backup shortstop and considering all the good fielders were gone, I figured I'd go with a guy who could at least hit a little.|
|Alberto Castillo Rd 24 557th--Needed a backup catcher. Alberto provided a minus two throwing arm. His lack of offense was a concern but none of the available candidates hit enough to outwiegh Alberto's defense.|
|Alfonso Soriano Rd 25 596th--Purely a future pick. Hopefully, he learns some plate discipline and will walk enough to be a useful player in years to come. Even if he doesn't walk much his speed and potential made him a good pick here.|
|Oriole Park at Camden Yards Rd 26 605th--People were starting to pick ballparks, so I wanted to be sure I got one I liked. The park seems to favor my right handed hitters while not endangering the pitching too much.|
|Russ Springer Rd 27 644th--Russ is the last player who will see extended time on the 25 man roster. He'll be the mopup reliever. He provides a decent number of innings in that role, while not being so horrible that you know the game is over once he's in.|
|John "wayback" Wasdin Rd 28 653rd--John will be the 6th starter and 12th reliever. I honestly hope we don't see him too much. But I felt I needed the innings as insurance.|
|Raul Ibanez Rd 29 692nd--Raul is strictly a pick for next year. He's hitting over .300 with double digit homeruns. Yes, it is pretty sad that I know what Raul Ibanez is doing for the Kansas City Royals.|
|Matt LeCroy Rd 30 701st--Matt is doing well in AAA. Unfortunately, he's not catching much anymore so that diminishes his value. I think he'll be able to hit in the bigs at some point. Hopefully, its soon enough to help the club.|
|Mike Magnante Rd 31 740th--Third lefty in pen. He's insurance if Holtz is ineffective or I need innings at some point.|
|Randy Winn Rd 32 749th--Randy is getting quite a few at bats with Tampa this year. He's acquitting himself nicely, especially vs LHP (.414 OBP). Yes, that is much sadder than the Ibanez thing a little earlier.|
|Brian Cooper Rd 33 788th--Real stab in the dark. Someone offered him to me in a trade once, so I recognized the name. I think right handed batters named Fred are hitting .190 against him in the minors.|
|Darren Bragg Rd 34 796th--Last pick,Mr Irrelevant (at least for our club there are a few selections left). Thanks,Hal nice pick. I don't think we'll spend the 100k to sign him to minors. Darren, there's a call for you from the GM of the Orix Blue Wave. Do you speak Japanese?|