And not because they got Nomar.
(I’ll admit—blast my South Side fingers for typing it!—this is probably the best move of the season for any team. Hands down. The Cubs get a shortstop with All-Star ability, plugging him immediately into their weakest spot. And what did they give up? The second best Alex Gonzalez in the league, simultaneously clearing room for Nomar while ridding themselves of the man truly responsible for last year’s Bartman debacle.)
(To make matters even sweeter, the Cubs get Nomar with a nice, fat chip on his shoulder. Here’s a guy that showed nothing but pure Bostonian honor all throughout his career. Then he gets a little banged up, misses a few games, and suddenly an Untradable Commodity finds his name in every trade rumor short of the NYSE. Eventually, the news comes out that he got within a Players Association’s gangster-esque nod to being whacked out of Boston and into Chicago. Oh, how that must have hurt his soul! After such a betrayal, Nomar reacted how anyone would: by sulking gratuitously, waiting for a one-way ticket out of Boston, and planning his revenge. Now he’s all set to go El Mariachi you-killed-my-wife crazy on the rest of the league. And oh, how the Cubs will reap the benefits!)
Sure. That’s all well and good for the Cubs. But, the true treasure of the deal is the unwritten addendum to his arrival, who will be sitting in the Wrigley stands from now on. Namely, Mrs. Mia Hamm. Having her there will brighten anyone’s day. Even Sylvia Plath’s. If she was a Cubs fan. And a lesbian.
The Phone Company of Peter Gammons
This is their Christmas, Hanukkah, and Festivus all wrapped up in a warm blanket of Ramadan.
Parties are thrown in the company’s building, complete with a large, telethon-sized countdown board. When he finally does go over his allotted minutes (usually around 2:30 a.m. on deadline day), out come the streamers, confetti, and the massive telephonic celebratory orgy begins! And when I say orgy, I mean orgy. Those phone companies know how to party. C+C’s ain’t got nothing on AT&T.
They were able to sell future Hall of Famer Roberto Alomar to the White Sox for $10.75, a kosher dog, and a one-legged minor league bullpen catcher to be named later. In doing so, they received well over Alomar’s market value. Kudos.
The team spent deadline day getting two new starters (the highly overrated Kris Benson, and the surprisingly nearing-30 Victor Zambrano), injecting some youthful spunk and vigor into the rotation. Instantly, the average age of the pitchers dropped from 54.3 to 42.3 years of age. With Glavine, Leiter, and Trachsel all qualifying for the Denny’s senior discount next year, the importance of these trades cannot be understated.
The flipside of this equation, of course, is the possibility of Benson and Zambrano goading the geriatric crew out of the nursing home and into the bars to soak up some of the New York nightlife. And then they’re just asking for a season-ending broken hip. Or, at the very least, a highly comical homemade video released on the Internet of the trio doing the Electric Slide. Either way, it’s not good news for the Mets.
Those With ESPN Bottom Line
You were so lucky. You got to view all the action in 1-inch virtual real time. Sure, you had to wait for news updates to see exactly what kind of money or Star Trek Pogs were exchanged. But you got to know right away the names involved in the trades. And that’s better than nothing. Stop whining. Be grateful for anything.
And can someone please finally invent a scrolling bottom line for eyeglasses? Please? Let’s put curing diseases, national defense, and creating low-carb sodas on the back burner for a moment, and refocus all of our technology and manpower on this. As a country, we should really have our priorities in order. Think of those envious Frenchmen: standing there smoking, asking for the latest baseball scores, because we have highly advanced electronic scrolling bottom lines in our eyeglasses. Oh, what spite they will have!
Contreras is lucky to finally be out of that steaming hot New York spotlight and into the annually low expectations of the Windy City. Welcome to our little hodgepodge of mediocrity, Jose.
The Neck of Peter Gammons
Ironically, even though Gammons gets Mel-Kiper-during-the-NFL-draft TV time during the trade deadline, his neck gets nothing. That’s due to the overworking of his massive jowl muscles while talking to the GMs around the league. When it finally tightens back up, the spotlight has already past, and the neck has missed his opportunity to shine. Maybe next year a nice flashy, graffiti-enhanced neck brace is the answer.
Wow. No one around baseball really likes this Dodger GM’s trade moves at all. No one. Well, except Rob Neyer. He likes them. But, then again, he loves anything with any relationship to Moneyball. If Billy Beane were to trade Tim Hudson for Scott Bakula, Neyer would somehow justify it. Probably with OPS. He likes that stat.
Esteban Loaiza’s goatee
The nine-and-a-half-year chin appendage, and mystical source of Loaiza’s cut-fastball power, was removed after Esteban’s trade to the Yankees, because of team tradition. And Steinbrenner’s insanity.
Let’s go down the list: (a) the D-Backs fail to trade him to his pinstriped team of choice; (b) they fail to trade him to any team at all; © the best hitter on the team, Luis Gonzalez, decides to have season-ending surgery; (d) the team trades away the second-best hitter on the team, Steve Finley. Now he’ll be lucky to average 1.2 in run support for the rest of the year. Ouch. Not a good weekend for the Big Unit. Except that he still has that sweet big-penis-suggesting nickname. That’s a big plus.
With everyone spending time on Internet message boards to discuss the latest trade rumors, or watching ESPN News and Fox Sports to get the latest insider information, most of America missed watching Senate-hopeful Barrack Obama’s keynote address during the Democratic National Convention. Too bad. It was a pretty good speech.
Next time, if they want people to actually watch the speeches, those Democrats should keep in mind the upcoming trade deadline when finalizing a date for their convention. It’s like programming your show against mid-90s Seinfeld; it’s a Nielsen death wish.
You Democrats must hate baseball. Which, in turn, undoubtedly means you hate America. And babies, puppy dogs, flowers, and love. Oh, you damn, Hatorade-drinking liberals!
Player to Be Named Later
You are already on another team, and you have no idea. You are a man without a nation, and you don’t even know it yet. You’re not even good enough to be mentioned in the official press release of the trade. That’s kind of depressing, isn’t it? You should probably quit baseball and pick up one of those T-shirt guns. People will like you then. Mostly because of the free T-shirts.