Torres to Hang Up Spikes?

By: Big Rygg

Let me precede what I’m about to post with the following statement:

I know that the Brewer Nation is just a weblog (and a MySpace page with plenty of friends and a Facebook entity that you can become a fan of) and that a lot of the media out there consider blogs to be places where any Tom, Dick or Harry can come to spout off on whatever they want without official recourse for bogus “news” or postings.
Now, having said that, someone mentioned something to me that makes a lot of sense.
Salomon Torres supposedly told the Brewers as early as July that 2008 would be his last season in baseball before retiring again.
Let’s break that down.
First, we all know that when Doug Melvin traded for Torres prior to the 2008 season that Torres was seriously contemplating retiring so as to avoid uprooting his family after so many years in Pittsburgh. He decided to pitch and we all know how well he filled in as closer before his amount of work seemed to catch up to him.
Second, the Brewers hold a club option on Torres’ contract at a reported $3.75MM. That is quite inexpensive for a pitcher of Torres’ skill and track-record given today’s contracts. The Brewers have until November 15th to exercise that option to bring Torres back at that cost. So why would they wait unless they didn’t exactly want to pay a guaranteed $3.75MM to a retired player?
I believe my source to be not only credible (they most definitely could/would have knowledge of this situation) but also there is no real reason to believe that they would lie about the issue since Torres’ situation doesn’t necessarily affect any of their situations directly.
Now, if Torres had said that 2008 would be his last season for sure as early as July, the only reason I can see as to why he hasn’t already announced that decision is because 2008’s success and playoff appearance is making Torres at least think about reconsidering his position.
Bottom line is that if Torres wants to play in 2009 and the Brewers don’t exercise his option, I’ll question the decision all year. That being said, there is a deadline on Torres to make up his mind whether or not he wants to play next year if he continues to be the professional that he has shown himself to be. In other words, it’d be pretty shady for him to say he wants to retire so the Brewers don’t pick up his option only to turn around and sign with someone else for more money. I wouldn’t expect Salomon Torres to do something like that.
Time will ultimately tell on this situation as with all other off-season happenings, but this twist needed to be mentioned just in case it happens that way.
In other news, CC Sabathia has reportedly talked to Yankee Captain Derek Jeter about what it’s like to play in New York City for the Bronx Bombers. The Yankees, bankrolled by oodles of revenue from their new stadium along with so much money coming off of their payroll from last year, are expected to make an enormous contract offer to Sabathia as early as Friday (when the moratorium on exclusive free agent negotiating rights is lifted). Sabathia will have quite the decision to make, and is covering his proverbial bases like any smart man would.
I’m still hopeful, though I know how unlikely it is, that CC will decide to help Milwaukee keep their window open a little wider for a little longer. We’ll all find out what the Brew Crew is up against as far as dollars and cents in a few days.

4 Comments

Interesting take on the Torres situation. Any baseball rules prohibiting this type of contract dodging? Maybe an unwritten rule, eh?
I posted my ’09 forecast…check it out. I will continue to do the same.

http://thehappyyoungster.mlblogs.com/

I really hope CC does come back to milwaukee we need him back

A few things. 1. Making the top 100 in dubious since we’ve been around since the start. This blog (if it was still a paid blog) would easily be in the top ten or should be. The content that Rygg and I have provided has been 2nd to none. Our baseball analysis has gone a step further than the casual fans perspective.

Sheets signing with the Yankees actually hurts the Brewers and the compensatory picks that they would receive since both Sabathia and Sheets are type-A free agents. Sheets picks would fall further down the draft than the sandwich picks we’ll receive for losing Sabathia if both players are signed by the same team.

The Cameron deal could be completed by Friday and its a good thing. So far, the best move Melvin has made has signed Ken Macha as the manager. Finally, the Brewers have an experienced “in-game” manager who is accustomed to dealing with a small-market roster. The best players will play. There will be no buddy system with Macha which means players like Hall, Weeks, and Hart will have to earn their way into the lineup.

Melvin signing Mike Lamb was an excellent signing. A left-handed bat with experience at 3rd base, 1st base, and the outfield. In September, Lamb was our most reliable pinch-hitter. This season, Lamb will be given the opportunity to claim the everyday 3rd base position away from Bill Hall. It was reported that Hall elected to have Lasix eye-surgery. He feels great which sounds good for the Brewers, however, it doesn’t guaranty him playing time. The best scenario would be for him to tear the cover off the ball in spring-training, then, deal him while his stock is up from what it is now which is basically nothing.

Nobody inquired about Prince Fielder during the winter meetings which is an obvious concern. You have to ask yourself why? Is it because Scott Boras is his agent? Is it his weight? Is it has shaky defense? Is it his attitude which can get ugly as we seen last season. I believe all of these factors weighed in as other teams felt he wasn’t worth all of that baggage. Melvin may need to move Fielder for a lessor player just to make room for Mat Gamel and Brad Nelson to complete for the 1st base job.

I still doubt that Fielder will play for the Brewers in 2009.

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