With Rotoworld's Fantasy Baseball Draft Guide just about ready to go live, it's time to check in with one last Hot Stove Blog. Look for articles on position battles, sleepers and busts and even a mock draft or three in the coming weeks as we build up toward the start of spring training and fantasy draft season.
Life needs a fast forward button sometimes. And a rewind, I suppose.Update:
The Rotoworld Online Draft Guide is now live!Pettitte Goes Quietly Into The Night...
Veteran southpaw Andy Pettitte
officially announced his retirement from the game of baseball at a press conference Friday inside Yankee Stadium.
It took longer than expected and probably came as a shock to most of the baseball world, but Pettitte finally reached a conclusion this week. He wants to spend more time with his family and less time under the bright lights of Yankee Stadium.
The Yanks were reportedly offering a contract worth nearly $12 million, and they might have gone up had he asked, but it wasn't really ever about the money. Pettitte is simply worn out, and wants to be a more prominent figure in the development of his young kids.
He will go out on top, and with a 3.88 career ERA. Some think he belongs in the Hall of Fame. Our guess is he barely misses, despite the remarkable career-long postseason success. There are too many pitchers with better stats who have been left out of the Hall for his case to hold up in a vote.Checking In On The Pujols Negotiations Is Futile
The two sides are keeping really quiet. The best of the best national baseball reporters have nothing, because there's no quality information to pass along. All we can do is guess, and guessing gets us nowhere.
The facts: Cardinals first baseman Albert Pujols
wants a deal done by the start of spring training. If a deal is not done, he will test the free agent waters at the conclusion of the 2011 season.
Pujols has been the most productive hitter in baseball for the last 10 years, with a career batting line of .331/.426/.624 and 10 straight 32-plus homer seasons. If he hits free agency, the suitors will be plentiful. Forget what you've heard, the Yankees and Red Sox will both be checking in.
It's all very tense in St. Louis at the moment. There's a sense that a massive contract extension might cripple the Cardinals, but there's also a desire to keep the best player in baseball around for the duration of his career. Tick. Tock. Mang.Pale Hose, Cuban Missile Reach Long-Term Pact
Two great nicknames. Four more years.
The White Sox reached a shiny new four-year, $32.5 million contract extension on Thursday that will keep Alexei Ramirez
in a White Sox uniform through at least 2015. The deal also carries a $10 million option for 2016.
Ramirez was finishing up a four-year, $4.75 million contract that he signed as an international free agent back in December of 2007.
The 29-year-old shortstop boasts an improving .283/.321/.430 batting line through his first three major league seasons and has added power in recent years. He has also become one of the top defensive infielders in the game. It's the kind of deal that should work out well for both sides -- market friendly, but not inexpensive.Dye Likely Saying Goodbye...
Veteran outfielder Jermaine Dye
has been a free agent now for nearly 16 months. He sat out for all of the 2010 season because no team would guarantee him a roster spot and now he's considering hanging up his cleats entirely for the exact same reason.
Dye slugged 27 home runs in 2009 against a cool .250/.340/.453 batting line, but his lack of range defensively has scared away teams who prefer to have a flexible bench. Defense is a priority in the post-Moneyball
"I would still like to play, but I think my choices have passed and teams have gone with other people," the free agent told Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com
on Wednesday. "I will continue to stay in shape and hopefully someone will call. If nothing gets done by the end of the spring, I may call it a career."
The 37-year-old is sitting on 325 career home runs and 1,779 career hits.