Ramon triumphant

photo by Samara Pearlstein

Praise be to Paws! The Tigers have signed Ramon Santiago to a two-year, $2.5 million contract. You can all let out that anxious breath you’ve been collectively holding. It will all be OK now. Ramon is here to soothe, to calm, to gaze soulfully out at the field from the bench, to occasionally field the baseball.

In all seriousness, this is a good thing. Is it the move that will tip the Tigers over from Potential ‘Rebuilding Year’ to Legitimate Division Title Contenders? Yes, yes, Ramon will save us all! No, it is not. But Mr. Santiago has been good to us defensively and he hits better than Adam Everett (not that this is difficult). I know he’d much rather be starting, but he’s a solid choice for infield backup and if worst comes to worst and Everett breaks a hip or something, well, there are worse things in this world than Ramon Santiago getting a few more starts.

He can also play a little second base here and there, which takes on EXTREME importance when you remember that the Tigers’ current second baseman is Scott Sizemore, he of the Zero Career Big League At-Bats. We need someone who can step smoothly in at second if/when Sizemore gets himself into a slump, starts feeling unaccustomedly sore, crumples tragically under the pressure, contracts swine flu, whatever. Santiago is just the cat for that.

Now here’s something strange:

According to Jon Paul Morosi’s Twitter (ugh), lefty reliever Brad Thomas’ contract will be for $1 million. Ummmmm. Yeah. This Brad Thomas, the one who spent 2008 and 2009 pitching in Korea, and before that was pitching in Japan, and last pitched in a MLB game in 2004. And he only pitched in three games that season. In fact he has only pitched in 11 games at the big league level in his ENTIRE CAREER.

And he’s 32 years old. Did I mention that? Because he is. Thirty-two.

The Tigers are (allegedly) (according to Mr. Morosi) paying him a million dollars? In a season where they’re trying to cut payroll? Really? WHY?

18 responses to “Ramon triumphant

  1. I have to say, I definitely felt a sense of calm wash over me when I read about Ramon. Now I feel like a total jerk for forgetting about him when I was trying to remember who the hell bats lefty or at least switch hits on the Tigers anymore (the answer: not many dudes). Love U, Ramon.

  2. The Santiago signing is a good one. He is a good utility playeer and we paid him fair value. The Brad Thomas report seems crazy, though.

  3. A million bucks sure doesn’t buy what it used to . . .

  4. And, remember, he also hits better than Elvis Andrus. As to Brad Thomas… What is “veteran minimum” nowadays? Maybe $1M is it.

  5. Rrrrramon!

    (That is how I always secretly pronounce his name in the recesses of my own mind. It just doesn’t seem right not to roll the ‘r’.)

    Anyway, I was glad to hear this. I have a feeling we’re going to need a utility guy with some experience next year. All the better that it’s someone we actually know.

  6. Minimum is $400K for everybody.

  7. Alli, Carlos is a switch hitter… and Clete bats lefty, yes? But we are going to be pretty heavily right-handed in 2010. :/

    Leshnock, it’s totally weird. I haven’t seen a retraction anywhere yet though, so I guess it’s probably true. Just… WEIRD.

    rea, no kiddin’. Sheesh, maybe they can toss me a million bucks to hang around and draw cartoons…

    Jeff, even if there was a gentlemanly veteran min implicit agreement type thing… how the hell would he qualify as a veteran?? Eleven games!

    heitk1le, ha ha, the only automatic R-roll I do is with Arrrrrrrrrrrmando Galarrrrraga!

    Matt, and BT should be getting a hair over that… no idea what’s goin on with this madness.

  8. I agree, especially with the swarm of lefties the Tigers have now.

  9. I normally don’t give a rat’s kidney about this kind of thing, but for once I would seriously be interested in hearing the Tigers’ explanation for why they’re paying him that much. Like, was there some sort of mini-posting-fee from the Korean league? That’s all I can think of, and it doesn’t sound correct…

  10. I’m interested in why the Tigers appear to be stocking left-handed relievers. I mean, as far as I know, Brian Shouse is still available and is not retired, and yet they pick up some guy from the KBO? whaaaaat

  11. Bullpen: 5 lefties (Seay, Ni, Thomas, Schlereth, and Coke) and 3 righties (Zumaya, Perry, and Miner). But, that’s one too many relievers, and it doesn’t leave any room for carrying any of the losers in the starter competition (the Bonderman, Robertson, Gallarega and Willis group), or any of the interesting pitchesrs down in our minor system. So, something has got to give, even if having that many lefties in the bullpen made sense.

    Obvviously, Dombrowski needs to hawk a LOOGY . . .

  12. David O. (13194013)

    Why in the world did we sign another reliever? We have copious amounts of relievers in the system. I am beginning to wonder if Dombrowski has some terrible fetish he’swishes to feed.

  13. Not as exciting as Billy Beane’s fetish for highly attractive young pitchers was. :(

  14. I am lost in this world of MoneyBall! Am glad for Ramon, a real Tiger! Still crying over the loss of Grandy! Comeon’ Dave build a TEAM!

  15. Not as exciting as Billy Beane’s fetish for highly attractive young pitchers

    Billy Beane? Or Billy Bean?

    (They both played for the Tigers in ’88, which was . . . confusing)

  16. BeanE… c’mon, Zito and Mulder and Hudson, AND Harden, and Street… dude clearly had an eyecandy plan in place… ;)

  17. //Billy Beane? Or Billy Bean?

    (They both played for the Tigers in ‘88, which was . . . confusing)//

    Haha, seriously? And, add to the fact they both vaguely look alike . . . That must’ve been fun times for their teammates.

  18. dude clearly had an eyecandy plan in place

    This sheds new light on the celebrated incident in Moneyball, where new GM Beane lets the team’s scouts run the draft the first year, only to throw his chair through the wall in frustration when they use their first round pick on Bonderman. Bonderman just wasn’t pretty enough.

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