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Not Your Father’s Whiz Kids

Here I am, all set to give the kid-in-a-candy-store Philadelphia Phillies a big pile of grief for their new ways, when along comes Tom Glavine to screw up the plan.

There I was, all set to compare this years’ Phils to last years’ Mets, when the Queens team goes and screws up the plan, proving flat out that only this years’ Mets can be last years’ Mets.

You want Tom Glavine, Mets, you can have him. Knock yourselves out. Ya think he’s gonna win 60 or 70 games pitching at age 37 and 38 and 39 and 40, then by all means, throw cash at the guy. He’s still got a good glove, used to be a hockey player, he won’t spill a drop.

Forget what he just did in the playoffs. Doesn’t matter. He won’t be needed in October playing for you clowns…

It would be nice if baseball could grasp the free agency concept already. It’s been three decades.

The object of free agency isn’t to reward a player for a job well done for someone else. Paying a man a ton of money because of what he just did, or what he used to do is not a blueprint for success in this arena.

The idea is to guess smartly, and get a guy just before he has his best years, before being the operative word. No one ever does it, but that’s the idea. Jim Thome, maybe. Tom Glavine, not a chance.

As for Philly, who knows? It might work out. New ballpark and all. Pat Burrell might turn into the superstar that Bobby Abreu didn’t, and Marlon Anderson and Robert Person might not be missed, and Jim Thome might be a stud and David Bell might take off after a nice postseason.

Or not.

Maybe Thome will lose 50 points batting in the National League but hit a bunch of homers like Greg Vaughn and only get booed at home half the time. Or maybe he’ll blow out a knee on the Vet’s ugly old turf before playing a game in the new place. And perhaps David Bell will go back to being David Bell.

By the way, it’s interesting how a guy like Bell can bang home a near career-best 70 and he’s a god, while someone like Eric Karros drops down to 70 and he’s head cheese…

And our beloved Dodgers? Ah yes, the Dodgers. Well, Karros had to leave sometime, and this is as good a time as any. I guess.

He was gracious, they were gracious, there’s a job for him to return to and probably a bobble-head night next season, and everyone was all nice and lovey-dovey. Fine, whatever. The money’s freed up. Next.

Mark Grudzielanek was a good little player but not really a winner. Perfect for the Cubs. If ever there was a non-power hitting second basemen so completely clueless as a situational hitter, with absolutely no desire to improve, it’s this guy.

Grudz also wanted to manage the team, and there’s no room for that BS anymore, anywhere, and certainly not in Los Angeles. Six mill entitles you to six mill and whatever playing time the skipper decides. Nothing more. End of discussion. Shut the puck up.

So, losing Karros and Grudzielanek, not a problem. Getting Todd Hundley, problem. Serious problem. Big, hairy, swingin, blanking problem.

Randy Hundley maybe, but Todd?

Forget the money for a second. Todd Hundley isn’t half the backup catcher Chad Kreuter is, which is saying something, and not as good as David Ross or whatever PCL’er the Dodgers might give a shot to. Not even close.

Can’t catch, can’t throw, can’t run, can’t hit for average or power with any reliability at this point in his career, can’t even really hit the ball with any reliability at this point in his career. I guess Todd Hundley is what you’d call a “no-tool player.”

Rumor was, the Dodgers tried to restructure his contract. Restructure his contract!!!!???? Restructure his freaking contract!!!!!!?????? Are you on drugs? How in the world are you gonna restructure Todd Hundley’s contract?

I’ll tell you how. Here’s how. This is how you restructure Todd Hundley’s contract. A dollar a year, for twelve and a half million years. Got that? A buck a season, till the year 12,502,002…

A moment of silence please, for Dave McNally. You are remembered fondly. Thank you…

Sorry to see Andy Benes retire again. But it’s refreshing to see a player leave early, rather than take another big contract, which is certainly still out there for him…

Seen on Sunset Blvd. in Los Angeles: an old Porsche 911 with a personalized license that read “CLMNTE.” If only it had been a Pennsylvania plate…

Look-alikes: Jackie Autry and Randy Jones…

Martha Stewart is a five-tool player…

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