Monday, November 29, 2010
Jazz Hands Waving Straight to Hell
Man, this has just been a really crappy year for the Dodgers, any way you look at it. They finished below .500, mired in fourth place and stuck in Manny-inspired drama for much of the season. They dropped the season series to the arch-rival Giants, including a couple of devastating late-inning losses aided by Don Mattingly buffoonery and all-too familiar Jonathan Broxton implosions. They then watched the Giants go on to win theWorld Series, beating the Phillies, the team that had eliminated LA from the playoffs two years in a row, along the way. Now they're going to give way too much money to Juan Uribe because they got caught in a ridiculous bidding war that probably didn't exist. It's all too funny.
Obviously, I'll never say anything bad about Juan Uribe ever again in these pages. The guy was plain awesome in a Giants uni. I'll love him 'til I die. Three years, though, for 21 million dollars? Give me a break. You can have him, Dodger fans. As a free-swinging, low-OBP guy whose range in the field is bound to diminish fairly quickly as he ages, Uribe just wasn't worth going crazy over. Luckily for those of us in need of a good punchline, the Dodgers did it anyway. Uribe's a nice player and he's probably going to kill the Giants with a big home run in the next year or so, but this deal has about a ninety percent chance of blowing up in Ned Colletti's face.
As for Uribe's tenure with the Giants, I'm not sure what I can add that hasn't been beaten to death repeatedly. He arrived amidst a sea of Giant fan skepticism as a non-roster invitee in 2009, then left a hero in 2010. He showed a grouchy OBP nazi like me that you can have tons of value even if you do swing at everything within a stone's throw of home plate. The Giants wouldn't have been hoisting the World Series trophy last month if Brian Sabean hadn't taken a small chance on him back when Emmanuel Burriss and (God forbid) Brian Bocock were found wanting. He was one hell of a Good Giant.
--My favorite Juan Uribe story from his time as a Giant comes from Jonathan Sanchez's no-hitter in July of 2009. In that game, when Uribe muffed a grounder that would allow the only baserunner of the game to reach (thus robbing Sanchez of a perfect game), my friend sent me a text that was supposed to say "Damn Uribe". Instead, the autotext on his iPhone read it as "Damn Urine", and that's the message I received. Good thing I had my eyes glued to the game and knew exactly what was going on, because otherwise I would have been pretty worried at what kind of lurid crap my buddy was getting himself into.