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first, a program note: the migration to the new platform will not, repeat not, take place this week. i'll have more specific information about the timing of the move asap. for now, we stay w/ the tried and true.

items:

  • the cards will flip through the cutout bin for starting pitchers after all. they're only offering a minor-league deal, hence only considering minor-league talent --- jeff weaver and bartolo colon are the two biggest names being bandied about. of late the white sox have been linked to colon --- apparently one caribbean paper even reported that an agreement was reached, but that later proved not to be true. strauss rightly points out that the pitchers under discussion probably aren't better than the options already available (ie reyes wellemeyer thompson). this reinforces my perception that the cards didn't prepare sufficiently for attrition among their corps of sore arms. they didn't decide to pursue more pitching depth until there was no depth left to acquire. . . . . (/ belaboring point)
  • kyle mclellan may get converted back into a starting pitcher this season. mclellan was drafted as a starting pitcher in 2002, muddled around for a while, got hurt, had TJ surgery, then came back last year as a reliever and blew guys away --- a 5:1 strikeout-walk ratio and 1.81 era across two levels (high A, double A). the guys at fanhome had a chat w/ mclellan at this time last year. he's not young --- will be 24 years old in june --- but he's already had half a year in AA, so he could move along quickly. if he returns to springfield, he'll join a rotation already stocked with some of the organization's top SP prospects (ottavino, pj walters, jaime garcia). it's a sensible move; the team already has a surfeit of right-handed relief prospects but needs more depth in its stable of rotation prospects. mclellan ranks 19th on the baseball america list, 31st on the birdhouse's list, 24th on the reader list at Future Redbirds; wasn't mentioned by sickels or goldstein. duncan was singing his praises the other day.
  • john sickels thinks allen craig's a real prospect: "I like Craig a lot and rate him as a big sleeper in the book. Not sure where he fits defesnively, but I like his power a great deal and I think he will continue to hit at higher levels. Very much an unsung prospect."
  • does the reds' signing of josh fogg for a million bucks mean their pursuit of joe blanton is at an end? i have to think so. beane was asking the moon for blanton and has no urgent need to trade him; i think the reds saw they weren't gonna be able to get him on reasonable terms. fogg's a very bad fit for the cincinnati ballpark; the signing probably helps the rest of the division.
  • speaking of lohse: where will he end up, and for how many years / dollars? on a 1-year deal, what's the over / under ---- $7.5 million? i'll take the under on that . . . . . lohse is this year's jeff weaver, ie the Designated Boras Screwee (DBS).