Too much school right now! I’ve been writing essays about boring stuff, instead of blogging lately! It is actually hard for me to determine what is more productive? If I write this essay, I can get a degree? If I post on this blog, I will be happy? I wish baseball blogging, or writing, was a University program, lol!! Here is a taste of what I’ve been doing. CAUTION: You might burst into a deep sleep upon reading!
This paper will examine the explanations put forth for the overall lack of unionism and lack of workplace human rights in East Asia. The lack of unionism in the region, with regard to degradation of human rights in the workplace, draws on one distinct explanation. This explanation focuses on the organized tactics of spatial labour control that seeks to manipulate organizing threats of migrant workers in East Asia. The topics that will be studied, pertaining to this explanation, include migration, labour’s lack of political inclusion, the structural spatial control of labour, and the physical space that is manipulated by East Asian corporate elites. The idea of organized spatial control presented by Philip Kelly includes the following to explain crucial labour topics that contribute to the overall manipulation of human security in the workforce:
constructing the individual as an autonomous unit of negotiation; constructing the workplace as a container for dispute resolution; establishing the industrial estate as a denationalized and desocialized space; constructing spaces of national sovereignty and imagined national/ethnic community; and, the distancing of homeplace from workplace through the use of migrant workforces.
Enough of that!!!! Back to baseball!!
In this post, I wanted to dissect every MLB teams ‘staples,’ briefly since 2003. A ‘staple’, as known by many who take global political economy, is a single product that defines the economic standing of a region/country of the world. For instance, the ‘old south’ of the United States had ‘cotton’ as their staple, the Maritimes of Canada has ‘fish’, and Japan has ‘electronics’. I compare this to players on current MLB teams.
Many teams have the same type of ‘staples,’ as players in their organzation. Although in past years, these players might not be the best players on their teams. In my opinion, many of them can be percieved to be accountable for a club’s success or failure.
So lets take it back, and look at the players that have stuck with their clubs since 2003 until recently!
Starting with … surprise! surprise!
Toronto Blue Jays 2003 – Roy Halladay, Alex Rios and Vernon Wells
Almost no other team is as relevant to the 2003 ‘staple’ theory than the Blue Jays. The success of the Jays hinges on these players. The BIG word regarding them however is … INJURIES!!! It is hard to argue that these three players are NOT a strong nucleus to build a team around. Many will argee that these past years have seen the Jays go through a lot of bad luck with injuries, specifically regarding these staples! In 2005, Halladay was anchoring the Jays to a serious wild card run when Kevin (flippin) Mench smacked a ball of Halladay’s ankle ruining that year. Halladay has also had some arm trouble in past years. As far as Vernon Wells, I ask what year hasn’t he cause instability in the Jays lineup because of injury? He simply is our only legitimate threat in the lineup, and he is often either on the DL, or playing not because of injury. The Alex Rios project has seen it’s share of inconsistancies. The talent is there, but for some reason, you get the feeling we haven’t seen fully what he can do in a year. He can look like he is going to hit 40 HR’s then not hit one for 2 months? So case and point, the Jays have gone as these staples have gone. Very inconsistant, because of injury and what have you. Characteristics of a slightly better than mediocre team, which is what they have shown since 2003. Too much rambling on the Jays, sorry I couldn’t help it they are my team.
Boston Red Sox 2003 – Jason Varitek, Manny Ramirez and Tim Wakefield
Ortiz did not start the 2003 season with Boston, but he was definately an early turning point for the team that won in 2004. Manny and Ortiz are what made Boston so strong! They are staples in themselves, instilling fear in the middle of that order. Without them, no 2 World Series would have been won. I would argue that life without Manny will be different for Boston, however, they are in the process creating their own ‘staples’ now with Pedoria and Youkilus. Varitek and Wakefield have been steady contributors. They give the team an identity. Varitek has arguably been the best catcher in baseball from a leadership perspective, and Wakefield might not get amazing numbers, but having him in the rotation is always something that teams and hitters have to prepare for. These staples have made Boston achieve great success since 2003. Tek and Wakefield will continue to do this, as Boston transitions out of the Manny/Ortiz (might be showing decline with injury) years.
Chicago White Sox 2003 – Paul Konerko, Joe Crede and Mark Buehrle
I’ll try to make this shorter. CWS won the World Series in 2005. They did it with great pitching that year (particularly from Buehrle). They also did it with hitting the long ball! Konerko and Crede definately exemplify that philosophy! Those players produced a ‘staple’ of success for Chicago in that year, and also last year making the playoffs. The AL Central is a tightly competitive division, so it is hard for any team to see constant prolonged success in that race.
Cleveland Indians 2003 – C.C. Sabathia, Travis Hafner and Cliff Lee
2003 was the year that these young players in Cleveland started to develop, and they did develop to guide the Indians into a 2007 playoff run (stopped by the Red Sox). Hafner has been hurt and inconsistant replacing Ellis Burks (old name) as the cleanup hitter in 2003, and Lee wasn’t that great until this year. These were strong and young ‘staples’ that helped Cleveland to a lot of success in 2007, and 2006 when they came close the playoffs. Losing Sabathia will hurt, however!
Detroit Tigers 2003 – Fernando Rodney, Brandon Inge and Nate Robertson
All these players were backups, or in the bullpen in 2003. Detroit had to reinvent themselves, and that led them to the World Series in 2006. Like I said before, in many cases these ‘staples’ may not be a team’s ‘best players’. These players all had ‘career years’ in 2006, and were great for Detroit in the playoffs. Proving my point once again, as the ‘staples’ go, so does the success of the team.
New York Yankees 2003 – Derek Jeter, Jorge Posada, Mariano Rivera, Hideki Matsui, Jason Giambi, Andy Pettitte, Mike Mussina
A lot of them, huh. Arguably, what has made the Yankees so successful over these years is the fact that they have these steady guys (staples) on the club! Before this season, 13 straight playoff appearances, but have fallen victim to other hot American League/National League clubs. However they do it, in 2003 they did it with Robin Ventura, Raul Mondesi and Nick Johnson also in the lineup, they do it! The look of the Yankees become quite different without the presence of many of these players.
Oakland Athletics 2003 – Mark Ellis and Eric Chavez
Hard to have a staple on a team that reinvents itself that much! In 2003, Mulder, Hudson and Zito were the strength of that team! Mark Ellis is a steady player at second base, but Chavez has been a big dissappointment for the A’s. They signed him, which is amazing for the A’s just in that fact, but it backfired as injuries have plagued him. I thought Chavez was going to be a very promising player for years to come, it looked that way. He fell off, the A’s fell off! Maybe Beane will never sign anyone to a big deal ever again!
Seattle Mariners 2003 – Ichiro Suzuki
A great ‘staple’ to begin with, although he hasn’t been as amazing as he was in some years, Ichiro is the face of the Mariners. The point here is that it is only Ichiro! He needs the support of other ‘staple’ players, to help. Edgar Martinez was there in 2003, but he was far too old already. Brett Boone looked promising, but that was all drug induced. They haven’t had solid players that they could fill positions with and call ‘staples’ in years! ‘Staples’ are what characterize the Mariners lack of success in this case.
Tampa Bay Devil Rays 2003 – Carl Crawford and Rocco Baldelli
They were the Devil Rays in 2003, so I can call them that. Crawford is an absolutely electric player on the field! Signing him to a big deal was definately the right call, and as soon as the Rays got a better supporting cast around him, they succeed. Baldelli’s injury plagued career has set the Rays back in past years. The Rays drafting with the 1st pick, has made them able to develop new ‘staples’ that they NEED to hold onto in order to succeed further. Crawford was, by far, a standout player for years before 2009.
Texas Rangers 2003 – Michael Young, Hank Blalock and Joaquin Benoit
Pretty difficult when the only solid staple on your pitching staff, is not solid or a staple at all. The Rangers can always hit and score runs, Michael Young has definately been a big part of that, but the pitching is terrible. Chan Ho Park was their ACE in 2003. Blalock looked promising, but injuries have kept him from doing anything great. The Rangers were very troubled in the years leading up to now, their ‘staples’ were not sufficent and lacking in talent, especially in the pitching staff.
Minnesota Twins 2003 – Justin Morneau
2003 was Morneau’s first year, and while he, Tori Hunter and Johan Santana were the ‘staples’ of some Twins’ playoff teams, they find themselves in the situation of having to be more cost efficient. Morneau will keep the Twins competitive in the AL Central, as they have been, but the Central is usually a toss up every year, as to who will win? Can’t argue with the Twins, they usually play great baseball every year and are in the hunt, too bad the playoffs haven’t been kind to them! “At least they make the playoffs,” says a disgruntled Blue Jay fan!
Kansas City Royals 2003 – Absolutely Nobody!
I really feel for the Royals, always having to reinvent themselves. In 2003, the Royals had Carlos Beltran, key word HAD. But even if they resigned him to be a staple, would they be any good? Probably not, is the sad answer. This is their rotation in 2003!
1. Runelvys Hernandez 2. Darrell May 3. Miguel Ascencio 4. Shawn Sedlacek 5. Chris George
Haven’t even heard, or remember, the last two guys. Sadly, those type of players have become their ‘staples’.
Baltimore Orioles 2003 – Brian Roberts, Melvin Mora and Daniel Cabrera
All these players were not in the O’s starting lineup/rotation in 2003, they were just developing. Roberts is a fine player, but the others are simply mediocre. Again, their problem exist with the pitching staff, which is very inconsistant and does not have a significant ‘staple’. They’ve been a very mediocre club and so have their ‘staples’. You can’t tell too much looking into their ‘staples’. Sidenote: ex-Blue Jays Cy Young Pat Hentgen was on the Orioles in 2003, along with other ex-Jays David Segui and Tony Batista.
Anaheim Angels 2003 – Garret Anderson, Scott Shields, Francisco Rodriguez and John Lackey
After the year the Angels won the World Series, they only have four players remaining from that era today. An excellent vetern hitter, two guys that have anchored what is arguably the best bullpen in baseball year in and year out and a very solid starting pitcher. Since 2003, the Angels have done a lot of tinkering around these guys, like adding Vlad and getting rid of Eckstien, Glaus and Erstad. However, the strength of the Angels has always been their bullpen, and you can’t think of a more solid hitter for the team, than Garret Anderson! All these guys were staples of some very good Angel clubs, that often were featured in the playoffs.
Agree? Disagree with the 2003 staple theory? The NL next post!
 Phillip Kelly, “Spaces of Labour Control: Comparative Perspectives from Southeast Asia,” Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers 27 no. 4 (2002): 398.
On top of reciting everything I read, like Ron Burgandy, I’m also very good at not predicting a truthful outcome. So here goes some of my free agent predictions. Try to think the exact opposite of everything I pick, in order to get a good hint into what really might happen!
I thought a prerequsite for looking into a crystal ball is that you have to be able to see? Or maybe not. Being less drunk might also not help, hmmm yes.
The Not Stove League
A.J. Burnett – I see that you will sign a deal worth about 18 million with the Boston Red Sox. The Blue Jays cannot afford that, and the Yankees will get cold feet because of your injury status. The Red Sox are gamblers, and they have the money.
Pat Burrell – A lot talk about you right now, lets see. I see you going to a small market franchise and being signed for less than what you are actually worth. This will occur at the end of free agency. Foggy but the team could be the Marlins, or Tampa Bay.
Mark Teixeria – You are catching interest from the Nationals, but I still think that you will be in New York. As I’ve said all along. You are a good fit there. This probably hurts their chances. I’m not even going to mention CC, because I know he is going there and I don’t want to jinks my chances of getting everything wrong!
Manny Ramirez – You are definately going to a large market. The L.A. Angels look the one maybe, like they need any more outfielders, but I see it for L.A. Oh no, that could be the Dodgers!
Derek Lowe – Who will be wise enough to get Lowe? I see a large market team, because he will command a fair chunk of change. I don’t know, I think he is back with the Dodgers, there is no way they can lose so much of what helped them succeed last season.
Orlando Hudson – Loved this guy in Toronto and I’m glad that he is getting serious consideration. Kelly Johnson is being shopped by the Braves. Hudson is a southern boy, so I’m saying he ends up with the Braves if he doesn’t cost them ‘an arm and a leg’, ha ha! Cliche. Man, that might be the most annoying thing I’ve ever written, I apoligize.
Rafeal Furcal – I don’t think the Blue Jays really want to pay for him. I understand shortstop is a need, but we have the defense in Johnny Mac. He probably will be too much for the Jays to sign anyway. I’m all for getting him if the price is right, but I would rather the Jays look for power hitting, or pitching. Furcal goes to the Giants, they are liking him right now. By the way, always respected the cannon Furcal has at short.
Ben Sheets – If the Mets are not able to swing a deal with Tampa Bay for Sonnastine, or Jackson, they panic and end up spending a lot, like they normally do. Sheets to the Mets maybe, I know they too are strapped for money.
Here is one that makes no difference to anybody. Jay Payton – The guy has underachieved his whole career. A fine athlete but needs to find some way to be threatening at the plate. Hiroshima Hawks.
Sidney Ponson – What team wants to go through the pain of having this guy pitch for them, “Oh Ponson, are you too good to be on the Rangers?” Give me a break. He ends up playing on the ‘Wal-Mart Mens Slo-Pitch’ team, position catcher.
Anyway, that is all I got! I’ll be back with more history next post. I was just trying to amuse myself writing this, I could actually be right about some of these predictions, I concede that, I don’t want to dash anyones hopes reling on me to fail, or expecting their coveted player to go to the team that I actually predicted.
Going with the ‘Anchorman‘ theme of the last couple posts. “I’m Ron Burgandy?”. “I’m telling you Burgandy will read anything you put on that teleprompter!” Still cracks me up.
I too have a strange desire to believe and recite everything I read! A piece of news just popped up about the Manny Ramirez contract dispute with the Dodgers. This blog is not really mean’t to report the news (I’m pretty sure Jon Heyman of Sports Illustrated beats me there), so here is a link and a small exerpt from the piece.
DANA POINT, Calif. — The Dodgers’ two year-offer to Manny Ramirez — believed to be for about $45 million — is very unlikely to lead to a quick deal between the sides, or perhaps any deal.
The sides are so far apart that the Blue Jays, Orioles and perhaps the Yankees and other teams likely have moved ahead of the Dodgers in terms of their chances to win the services of the mercurial superstar. Those outside teams aren’t eligible to make offers until Nov. 14, but the Dodgers have thus far failed to get a jump start on the others with a proposal so far below Ramirez’s asking price that Manny is likely thinking more seriously about outside options now.
It looks like ‘Panda Watch‘ is starting to heat up around here! Manny wants the years, and the Dodgers look unwilling to give it to him. Scott Boras, ‘the Manster’s’ agent, will get what his client wants. You can count on that. If Manny is not signed by November 14th, it looks
like my prediction of him being back with the Dodgers is in trouble.
Depending on the market, I think the Jays are in a good position to make a serious play for Manny post-Nov. 14th. The Jays desparately needed hitting last year. This might be our window of opporitunity to get some.
As far as the clubhouse and ‘on field’ ‘shenanigans’ that come with Manny, they didn’t seem to effect the Dodgers on their late push for the NL West last season. The Jays have had to suffer with the likes of a disgruntled Shea Hillenbrand, Ted Lilly, and Frank Thomas in the past. I’m sure that Cito Gaston, a great student of the baseball swing, would respect and welcome the presence of a pure vetern hitter like Manny Ramirez in the clubhouse, especially if he is hitting behind Alex Rios.
THE ‘PANDA WATCH!’ CONTINUES
Now that A.J. Burnett is likely out of the picture, the Blue Jays will have to look for some ‘rare beast’ of a player in free agency. Who might that be? Well, people have floated around Canadian Ryan Dempster and almost every available bat in the free agent market, with the exception of Adam Dunn, we all know where J.P. stands on him. Manny Ramirez looks like a panda, well kind of. No question, that guy is a great hitter, but I think he is going to still be with the Dodgers. The whole ‘Panda Watch’ thing is from the movie ‘Anchorman’, if you were wondering.
I found this fun little thing on MLB.com, where if you predict where these free agents will go, you can win baseball tickets.
To be honest, I really have no clue for a number of these picks (i.e. just random guesses), however I put Burnett re-signing with the Jays as my pick with the most confidence. Wishful thinking I guess. I’m banking on the Yankees landing both Sabathia and Teixeira as their big free agent splash of the offseason, that everyone is predicting they will make. To me, I can’t see how Manny would choose another team than the Dodgers, given his acceptance with that team this year.
The rest are just random predictions, like Lowe and Abreu going back to their former teams Boston and Philly. I don’t know where that came from? Don’t take me as a source on this, check out http://hotstove.mlblogs.com/ and http://allbaseballallthetime.mlblogs.com/ for that. Those guys are very good on the free agent beat!
This is a fun promotion, however, and you never know? Maybe some of these random guesses might work out!