-With the Rays' exit from the playoffs on Tuesday, the pending free agency of Carl Crawford, Rafael Soriano, and Carlos Pena, and management's stated desire to lower payroll, everybody seems to be lamenting the end of an era in Tampa. And as much I want to root against a rival, you do have to give the Rays credit. They built a good team, and while it's nearly impossible to keep the core together forever, they have guys in the pipeline who at least have a shot to replicate the success of those who are departing.
-Then again, maybe losing guys to free agency isn't the worst thing, at least for the long-term health of the franchise. Remember those pesky A's from 10 years ago? Their core of Jason Giambi, Miguel Tejada, Eric Chavez, Ramon Hernandez, Tim Hudson, Mark Mulder, Barry Zito, and Jason Isringhausen propelled the '01 team to 103 wins and a postseason appearance, combing for 39.6 WAR on total salaries of about $11.3 million. Yet in 2007, they combined for just 12.2 WAR but earned nearly $85 million.
-Fangraphs talks about why having Cliff Lee start Game 3 of the ALCS isn't a big deal. But wait a minute:
Having their rotation jumbled won’t present a significant disadvantage to winning the series. It just moves their must win games up by a few days.
Doesn't that sound like kind of a big deal, that one of the two games that you stand the highest probability of winning doesn't come until the last game of the series? With any luck, it will be over before then.
-Looks like AJ Burnett pitched decently in a simulated game. But how do you think they pick the guys who have to face him during it? You wonder if poor Greg Golson lost a bet or something.