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People luv them some Erstad

From the Chicago Tribune:

General manager Ken Williams will bring much welcomed relief to douse the verbal flames directed at him Friday when sold-out SoxFest opens.

That break will come from Darin Erstad, who will bring more than 11 years of solid production when he's introduced to fans craving a return to the postseason after a one-year absence.

Erstad, 32, brings a professional edge that some major-league scouts and White Sox loyalists believe was missing after fan favorite Aaron Rowand was dealt to the Phillies last winter.

And if Erstad is recovered fully from a right ankle injury that limited him to 40 games with the Los Angeles Angels last season, he could provide the Sox with the same type of bargain Jermaine Dye has during his two seasons after being hindered by leg injuries.

The signing of Erstad, who will make $750,000 in 2007 with a $3.5 million team option for 2008 ($250,000 buyout), should cool some of the steam coming off the tops of Sox fans still angered over the trading of pitchers Brandon McCarthy to the Rangers and Freddy Garcia to the Phillies.

Any ChiSox fan whose anger over the McCarthy trade would be lessened by the addition of Darin Erstad should have a cork on his fork like Ruprecht the Monkey Boy.

Also, I'm confused by the "11 years of solid production" comment. The author of that article must be referring to dog years, since in Erstad's 11 year career, he's had an OPS+ of better than 100 only once, and has cracked a 700 OPS only twice (with one of those two being a 702 OPS) in the past six years.