Friday, September 05, 2008

Armstrong still doesn't get it

Mariner's president Chuck Armstrong nixed the deal for Jarrod Washburn, according to Geoff Baker. Several theories about about why he did show up on Baker's blog entry and the comments:
  • Armstrong wanted a valuable player in return, not just the savings of not having to pay him. The problem is that Washburn isn't just under contract for 2008; he's due $10M in 2009. This is about like going to a store and insisting on an exchange instead of a refund.
  • Having let Bavasi run a little wild with spending and payroll, Armstrong decided he'd be taking a more involved roll in personell/payroll decisions. Fine. Except this decision was to save money, not spend it. Armstrong's interference increases payroll next year. How is that being more fiscally responsible?
No matter how you want to dress it up, it comes down to this: Chuck Armstrong thinks he can evaluate baseball talent. He thinks Jarrod Washburn is worth something. More than that, he thinks that his opinion about Washburn is so trustworthy, he's going to override his interim GM. Moreover, nobody was going to give up a decent player for Washburn; Armstrong thinks his opinion of Washburn is more accurate than the entire league.

Bavasi may be gone, but the M's management won't really undergo a significant change until Armstrong steps aside.

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