And know we know why Shea Hillenbrand’s addition to the Giants couldn’t possibly have caused any chemistry problems. From the SF Chronicle’s Henry Schulman (link copped from Repoz and Baseball Think Factory)
“If I could beg, I would beg. Send me where you want, but not to San Francisco,” said Pirates reliever Salomon Torres, who stressed he loves the city and people. He even made peace with Bonds and they chatted Friday. But Torres had such a rotten time in San Francisco, from 1993-95, the idea of going back revolts him.
“A terrible feeling went through my body because all of a sudden all the bad memories that I have, especially from ’94 and ’95, somehow I relived them in a matter of seconds,” Torres said. “It was a very difficult time for me, in part because of lack of experience and different issues I had to deal with, with Barry, at the time. It made my life miserable.”
Torres said he asked for a trade because Bonds often berated him. The Giants eventually sent him to Seattle.
“Many times I cried myself to sleep, because I was looking for a brother on the team, a mentor who could help me out, coming from another country, a different culture and all that,” the Dominican Republic native said. “I didn’t get that, because the clubhouse was very divided at the time and I was in the middle of it.”
“By far, that’s the worst time I had in my career,” Torres said, referring to his dealings with Felipe Alou. “It prompted my (temporary) retirement. He didn’t treat me the way I felt he should have been treating me. … He never went straight to me and told me what was going on, and I resent him for that.
“I don’t want to relive what I went through, especially in ’97 with the Expos with Felipe. I have the utmost respect for him, but if I stay away from him, it’s better. I’m just looking for my future sanity.”
Though Jason Stark and a few chat radio hounds were howling about the likelihood of Wily Mo Pena being traded, the Boston Herald’s Michael Silverman claims Coco Crisp is the Red Sox outfielder who might be dealt.
In order to add another starter to the rotation for the remainder of this season and possibly beyond, the Red Sox are making two-thirds of their starting outfield – center fielder Coco Crisp and right fielder Trot Nixon – available to other teams while also making it clear that young pitchers Jonathan Papelbon, Jon Lester, Craig Hansen and Manny Delcarmen are not going anywhere.
A major league source yesterday said the Red Sox had recently made a concrete offer that included Crisp to another team for a starter.
Crisp™s availability can be read any number of ways. The 26-year-old is having a mildly disappointing season so far – .275 batting average and 11 stolen bases after his 2-for-4 effort in an 8-3 loss to the Los Angeles Angels last night – but his upside is still considered quite high. Cost control is another factor that would make him attractive, considering that he and the Red Sox agreed this April to a three-year contract extension worth $15.5 million, plus an $8 million option for 2010.
Newsday’s Bob Herzog echoes a Stark claim from yesterday, that the Phillies are looking to move Jon Lieber and Bobby Abreu as a combo platter, and the Yankees might be one of the only suitors with enough of an appetite.
Pledging that he’ll not type the words “Lastings” or “Milledge” again until the Mets prospect is traded, Catfish Stew’s Ken Arneson is less than enthralled with the notion of Barry Zito being traded for Aaron Heilman.
Heilman is only six months younger than Zito, and he’s accomplished almost nothing in comparison. Olney mentioned Heilman’s “upside”, but Heilman is running out of time for upside. His ERA is 4.47. In a weaker league. As a reliever. If Heilman is the return, I’d much rather keep Zito, try to win this year, and get two draft picks in what is supposed to be a very strong draft class.
The bigger question is a philosophical one: should the A’s trade Zito at all, when they’re still tied for first place with 62 games remaining? Is there any way they could get anything for Zito that wouldn’t decrease their chances of winning the division this year?
It’s an interesting question. The A’s upper farm system is so barren, that it’s hard to imagine the A’s getting much better than they are now in the next couple of years. This may be there best chance to win a division for a while. On the other hand, Zito is probably their best, or only, tool they have to restock the upper levels of the farm system with some talent.
Perhaps the Zito dilemma shouldn’t be viewed in a vacuum. There are ways Beane can improve the A’s in other areas to make up for the loss of Zito, and give the A’s a chance to compete this year and next. For example, I’d like to see the A’s go out and nab a third baseman like Joe Randa, just so they can let Eric Chavez hit the DL and fix his tendonitis with rest. Randa, mediocre as he is, would still easily improve on the .100 batting average that both Chavez and Antonio Perez are putting up there right now. Then maybe you have a healthy Chavez for September.