Monday, February 13, 2012- Oakland- MLB Network's Ken Rosenthal reports that the Oakland A's have come to terms with W Cuban OF Yeonis Cespedes on a 4 yr $36 million deal.
The move seems to be a departure from the recent direction taken by the A's front office, widely considered one of the smartest in baseball before Brad Pitt had even heard of Billy Beane. This offseason the A's have traded away three twenty-something pitchers of above average results and abilities(Andrew Bailey, Trevor Cahill, Gio Gonzales), signaling a white-flag approach to the up-coming season while awaiting a San Jose stadium.
Beane is a master at timing the market and usually gets the best possible return on investment, so signing a potential quality free agent would not be a surprise. Spending $36 million on an unproven commodity does however, seem surprising. Especially when dipping into the Cuban market far from guarantees results.
Jose Contreras, Kendry Morales, Alexei Ramirez, Livan and Orlando Hernandez have all had success on some level but for every "El Duque" story there is at least one "El Duquecito". Adrian Hernandez, nick-named "El Duquecito" as his delivery so closely resembled that of Orlando, never panned out. He made his big league debut in 2001 and in 14 career games spanning three seasons was 0-6 with a 6.55 era.
Billy must see something special in Cespedes to invest so much in him.
From the say it ain't so file: Jose Canseco has signed with the Quintana Roo Tigers of the Mexican League in his latest attempted attention grab. Judgement reserved for the former MVP but assuredly only the finest money management and quality life choices can make this possible.
Same file: Randy Moss announces he wants to make a comeback via social media. This comes as a complete shock to no-one at all. Moss does not display typical "retire with quiet dignity" traits. Or any other dignified traits.
From the "Coaching decision of the decade" file: University of Alabama head basketball coach Anthony Grant has suspended JaMychal Green, Trevor Releford, and Andrew Steele indefinitely for violation of team rules. This follows Grant suspending Tony Mitchell for team related violations. " Our hope is they will be mature enough to accept responsibility for their actions and place a higher value on their character." Sign that man to an extension and start building the statue.