Jon Heyman's column reviews last offseason's big trades, and discusses at length the Josh Hamilton/Edinson Volquez deal...Heyman says Krivsky was dead set on getting Volquez if he gave up Hamilton, and rejected various other combinations and offers, and the deal is now looking pretty good for both teams.
SI has a feature piece on Volquez's resurgence, and Volquez says part of it is going to a lower arm angle than the one the Rangers wanted him to pitch from.
Meanwhile, Rob Neyer writes on the forgotten guy in that deal, Danny Ray Herrera, with some quotes from Herrera on how he ended up where he is, a look at his repertoire, and the history of short pitchers.
John Barten has this week's THT Awards up, and our own Eddie Guardado got the coveted Wes Littleton Award for the week.
Jayson Stark has a new Rumblings & Grumblings up, listing all the top young players who have signed multi-year deals, and I was surprised to note that he didn't include Ian Kinsler. I guess he just isn't as high profile as Joakim Soria or Manny Corpas or Chris Young (the Diamondback), who he does list.
Also of note is that the Tiggers, if they shake things up, are going to be asked about Jeremy Bonderman, a guy that the Rangers have had interest in for a while. The problem with Bonderman is that his performance has consistently failed to match the perception of how good he is. He has the aura of a quality top of the rotation starter, but he's only had an ERA+ of better than 93 once in his career, despite generally playing in front of good defenses.
Bonderman is still pretty young -- to put it in perspective, C.J. Wilson, Kason Gabbard, A.J. Murray, Wes Littleton, Dustin Nippert, and Josh Rupe are all older than Bonderman. So you would think there might be some growth there. And his peripherals have always been solid (at least before this year, when he's allowed more wallks than strikeouts).
But it wouldn't surprise me, if the Rangers hang around and the Tigers aren't in the race, if they don't make a push for Bonderman, who is under contract through 2010.
Think the Rangers have problems? Two of the M's pitchers don't want to pitch to the catcher the M's just extended (for big money) through 2011...and so Jamie Burke, instead of Kenji Johjima, is going to catch Erik Bedard and Jarrod Washburn from here on out.
Washburn was so thrilled to learn he'd have Burke from here on out that he promptly gave up 9 runs in 2 1/3 IP. One can only imagine how bad it would have been if he had had the catcher he can't communicate with.