I’ve been away all week and likely will be away through the weekend at least. My mom got covid in her care home and isn’t going to recover from it. So we are up in Edmonton sitting with her. She’s 94, has had a good life, has been amazingly healthy, until the last few years. But it is still sad. She’s been sleeping since last Friday, not eating or drinking.
As always, there isn’t much for baseball news. Rob Manfred is talking to the press today. The Owners are to deliver a new proposal tomorrow and Manfred tells us “You are always one breakthrough away from making a deal”. I think they are more than one breakthrough, but it would be nice if the Owners would make some movement on any of the major issues. I’m not going to hold my breath.
Manfred also says that they could get Spring Training started within a week of a settlement. The one I agree with is “Missing games is disastrous for this industry”. No kidding. Too bad they didn’t twig onto that a couple of months ago when they weren’t talking to the players.
There is also this from Rob:
Asked whether owning an MLB team is a good investment, commissioner Rob Manfred said the return on owning a team is historically "below what you'd get on the stock market with a lot more risk"— Ben Nicholson-Smith (@bnicholsonsmith) February 10, 2022
So apparently he assumes we are all idiots and will believe anything he says.
Keith Law has his ranking of the MLB minor league systems. He has Toronto having the 5th best system in baseball, down from 3rd last year:
The Blue Jays have quietly become powerhouses on the international free-agency front, hitting repeatedly on big-dollar signees – current prospects Orelvis Martinez, Miguel Hiraldo and Leo Jimenez, and of course Vladimir Guerrero Jr. – as well as smaller bonus guys like Gabriel Moreno, Sem Robberse and Otto Lopez. They’ve supplemented with some solid drafts, with their first pick from 2020, Austin Martin, since traded to Minnesota to land José Berríos. Their first two picks from 2021, Gunnar Hoglund, who’s coming off Tommy John surgery, and Ricky Tiedemann, who was throwing quite a bit harder in instructs, both look like they’ll be big risers for 2022, as well. There’s quite a bit of position player depth here – Cleveland might be the only team with more depth on the left side of its infield – with its next wave of pitching probably two years off.
He has the Dodgers in the number one spot, followed by the Mariners, the Diamondbacks and the Rays.
The other AL East teams? The Orioles are 10th, Red Sox are 20th, and Yankees 22nd. At the bottom is the White Sox, but then they have graduated a number of players out of their system in the last 2-3 years.