The Cubs played chicken with Matt Garza’s scheduled start in Arizona on Monday. The Rangers blinked when they heard AL West leader Oakland was trying to barge into the trade talks. Deal.
The White Sox can’t set a Thursday deadline in advance of Jake Peavy’s next start because he has to show he’s healthy and effective enough to get traded, and smothering the Tigers lineup would put a period at the end of that answer.
Still, it would seem that White Sox general manager Rick Hahn should call Oakland GM Billy Beane. The first-place A’s are being chased by Garza’s Rangers, so find out if the A’s are worried about Bartolo Colon’s future after what happened to fellow drug cheat Ryan Braun on Monday.
Colon is fat and old and amazingly 13-3, but not so amazingly when you figure he’s likely taking some kind of performance-enhancing drug, and in fact, already has been suspended for such things.
The A’s contend that Colon already has been punished for cheating and his involvement with the Biogenesis lab in Miami. The A’s don’t believe Major League Baseball would essentially convict him of double jeopardy. That’s what the A’s have said publicly, anyway.
Privately, they ought to be worried. They’re idiots if they think Bud Selig cares about due process with all the cheaters who even their own players association wants punished. All Selig would demand of his investigators is one bit of new evidence that Colon went back to the syringe of youth, and bang, gone for the rest of the season if not forever.
And you bet there would be a lot of players cheering if Colon was told to get out. I mean, did you read some of the stuff that came out of Braun’s suspension for the rest of the season?
Braun is a liar, a fraud and apparently the most hated major-leaguer ever. Other major leaguers hate Braun for beating the system on a technicality involving urine messenger Dino Laurenzi Jr. They resent Braun for weakening the system by snaking out of a positive drug test. And then there was his arrogance and cleaner-than-thou bull manure at that news conference.
Put all that together, and you get someone more despised than Sammy Sosa multiplied by Milton Bradley.
At least until Alex Rodriguez gets his, and that undoubtedly will end that cheater’s career.
Point is, more players will get suspended and others will be traded, both of which make Peavy more valuable, and Peavy knows it. In fact, he wants it because it will involve pitching for a contender.
Some teams like the cost control of Peavy deal, which runs through next season. Others, such as the A’s, don’t like being on the hook for $20 million or so. That’s usually the A’s total payroll.
But when the team chasing you makes a big move the way the Rangers did with Garza, it can force a big counter-move justified by postseason ticket sales in Oakland.
And so, you would hope that Hahn has Beane on speed-dial by now.
If the Sox trade Peavy, it will be interpreted as a yard sale. Everything must go. Fine. Good. Everything should go. Other than Chris Sale, there’s no player you couldn’t trade, and you’d trade Sale if you got the right offer.
The Sox don’t like to say such things as “rebuild’’ and “start over.’’ They depend heavily on ticket sales and believe that a scorched Sox policy might cost them fans.
But let me ask you: How many more fans could the Sox really lose?
Geez, they’re in last place, they’re hopeless, and they’re burdened with a baseball IQ close to zero. Fans already have shown they won’t pay for this team, so how bad could it get?
Besides, what’s the more important investment, spending $100 million to finish last while acting like you’re trying or spending less while rebuilding the way smart teams do?
I know the answer. I know Peavy needs to go six strong Thursday.