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Thursday a.m. stuff

Well, there's not really anything Rangers related out there today.

And not much baseball-related, really.

Buster Olney talks about Willie Randolph's extension, and how 3 years, $5.35 million pales in comparison to Alan Embree getting $2.75 million for one year, or Jason Marquis getting $7 million per year.

One of the things that I wonder about, when you hear about someone like Buck Showalter or someone similar being praised for being such a great manager, someone who can win games and turn around franchises...

Why do these guys still make only as much as a utility infielder? If anyone in baseball really thought a manager could make that much of a difference, wouldn't they be getting paid at least as much as, say, Jason Marquis?

I tend to view a good manager as a bus driver. Just keep things on track and stay out of the way. Managers, it seems, are a lot more likely to end up contributing a big negative than a big positive, all in all.

Bill Bavasi has an interesting Gil Meche quote:

Mariners general manager Bill Bavasi had some frank comments about departed pitcher Gil Meche, who signed as a free agent with Kansas City for five years and $55 million.

Noting that Meche probably had the best arm of any free agent on the market, Bavasi said: "There's probably some fuse missing in his fuse box that makes it work on a consistent basis.

"Maybe Kansas City can find that switch and get it turned on. We think that the attempts made here were real strong. ... To his credit, Gil was willing to try a lot of things. Staying consistent was a real challenge."

Not exactly the type of thing you'd want to read about your $55 million free agent, I don't think.

John Sickels also has a prospect retro on Gil Meche, looking back on his time in the Mariners farm system.

Sickels suggests that Meche was hurt by being pushed too aggressively by the Mariners, and this is something that I find interesting, because I remember at the time, at the ESPN message boards, arguing with Mariners fans who said that Seattle was handling Meche perfectly. They assured me that Bryan Price and Lou Piniella knew more about pitching than some egghead like Rob Neyer (who did a column pointing out how poorly pitchers who had as much major league experience as Meche did, at so young an age, generally fared down the road, due to injuries) did.

And we know how that turned out...