The allegedly cash-strapped D-Backs give Brandon Webb peace of mind. Calvin Pickering has another summer in Omaha ahead. The Brewers will take their time with J.J. Hardy. Wiki Gonzalez will get a closer look at Mount Rainier. These and other happenings in today’s Transaction Analysis.
A two-sport star at Stanford University, Joe Borchard chose a professional baseball career in the Chicago White Sox organization over a career as an NFL quarterback. Now 25 years old, with talented outfielders in front of him (Magglio Ordonez, Carlos Lee) and behind him (Jeremy Reed), Borchard faces a pivotal point in his career. Told earlier this week that he’ll begin the year at Triple-A Charlotte, he hopes to get back up to the big club soon, with an eye on claiming a starting job. BP recently spoke to Borchard–before news of his demotion–about his off-season training regimen, his quest for a steady job in the big leagues, his choice of baseball over football, and more.
Freshly minted Dodgers GM Paul DePodesta has plenty of challenges ahead of him. The Dodgers, a team historically accustomed to success, haven’t made the postseason since 1996 and don’t appear poised to break that trend in the upcoming season. If they don’t, it’ll be the organization’s longest glory drought since they wallowed in mediocrity from 1921 to 1940.
This season, the club does have well defined needs, but those needs–offensive production of some kind–are sweeping and not easily addressed. Although there have been a few rumors floated by the press (Jose Canseco, Adam Dunn, Jason Kendall, Larry Bigbie), DePodesta has yet to make the headline-grabbing move that Dodger nation awaits with bated breath. Although his tenure in L.A. will certainly bring its share of major trades, I’m not so sure that one is in the immediate offing. A panic move isn’t in order; a reevaluation of the “Dodger Way” most certainly is. The organization has famously relied on pitching since moving Westward, and it served them well for many years. Stockpiling quality arms is praiseworthy, but not when it’s achieved at the utter neglect of the offense. The Dodger Way must change.
A positional switch is in order for the Orioles. The Rockies have a top-prospect to look forward to in Chin-Hui Tsao. And despite popular belief, acquiring Mo Vaughn was actually one of the better moves of the Steve Phillips Era. All this and much more news from Baltimore, Colorado, and New York in your most recent edition of Prospectus Triple Play.