Jon Daniels' decision to sign Roy Oswalt might save the Rangers' season.
The Monday Takeaway R.J. Andersonwrote last week in his analysis of Roy Oswalt’s deal with Texas that “Jon Daniels knew the Rangers needed another starter with Neftali Feliz experiencing elbow inflammation and Scott Feldman inflating the run-scoring environment.” If the past week is any indication, the general manager’s foresight may prove critical to the team's hopes this season.
The Rangers have lost five of their last six games, and while a slumping offense—which has averaged less than four runs per game during that span, compared to 5.51 for the season—is partly to blame, the pitching staff has suddenly become an abject disaster. Ron Washington’s staff has coughed up 53 runs in the last week, after allowing just 68 during the team’s remarkable 17-6 April. A 21-8 drubbing at the hands of the Mariners last Wednesday is the primary culprit, but the Rangers have now allowed double digit-runs on three separate occasions in the last seven days, twice to Seattle and once to Oakland.
How unusual is it for a pitcher of Roy Oswalt's record to be without a job this late in the offseason?
It sneaked up on us a little bit (and by us, here, I mean me), but all of a sudden it’s very late in the offseason. It’s February 15th. The Athletics and Mariners have opened Spring Training already, sort of, and the rest of the teams’ pitchers and catchers report on Sunday. Major League Baseball will be played two weeks from Friday. Major League Baseball that counts will be played...well, that’s seven weeks from today. That’s still quite a ways off, really. But still, Spring Training! Soon!
What ever happened to Roy Oswalt making a lot of money this winter?
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Matt Kory is a former Urban Planner turned stay-at-home dad. He exists in a whirling vortex of crying, poopy diapers, and sports, punctuated by daily columns at Over The Monster. He also writes for the online magazine Splice Today. He hopes to one day make a living from doing this stuff, so feel free to contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org and tell him what a genius he is. In his spare time he does not enjoy jogging, sleeping, more crying, or being scratched by his cat. He lives in Portland, Oregon with his wife and two three-year-old boys. Follow Matt on Twitter at @MattyMatty2000.
Before all the IBA ballots are counted, staff picks give a hint as to what hands the awards may find themselves in.
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. Travis Hafner posted the highest OBP in the AL while nobody noticed, while Neifi Perez ended up getting playoff PT. The young guns had their day and then some. Jermaine Dye gave a lengthy spanking to his 90th percentile PECOTA projection (PECOTA's .288/.359/.516 versus an actual .315/.385/.622). The crop of AL rookies included a guy with a 0.92 ERA finishing third, and rooks like Jered Weaver (105:33 K:BB) and Francisco Liriano (144:32) threatening to be Johan Santana's biggest challengers in 2007. The National League featured tighter races, including a four-way brawl for the Pitcher of the Year and another impressive crop of newbies.
Eight staff members weighed in on the season that was, casting their ballots for the Internet Baseball Awards. We summarized their findings below, and then let them have their individual say.
Winning a close race with Barry Zito and Derek Lowe, Pedro Martinez followed in the footsteps of Randy Johnson, Greg Maddux and Roger Clemens by winning his fourth Internet Cy Young Award.
Winning a close race with Barry Zito and Derek Lowe, Pedro Martinez followed in the footsteps of Randy Johnson, Greg Maddux and Roger Clemens by winning his fourth Internet Pitcher of the Year Award. Zito was actually named on more ballots than Martinez and finished a extremely strong second. He is the last member of Oakland's big three to finish among the top three in Internet AL Pitcher of the Year voting; Mark Mulder finished third in 2001 and Tim Hudson finished third in 2000. Lowe, who allowed less runs per 9 innings than anyone in baseball in 2002, finished a strong third. Of last year's top three finishers, only Mark Mulder received any significant support this time around, finishing seventh. The highest ranking reliever this year was Billy Koch, who finished tenth.