He thought I threw my helmet at him, but that's where the batboy sits and it didn't even come close (to Scioscia).Oh, it was all just a big misunderstanding! He didn't throw his helmet at the manager, he threw it at the batboy! Don't worry, Jose. All is forgiven. Prick.
We're still after Esteban Loaiza. Maybe it's all the Sammy Sosa talk, but this doesn't seem like that bad an idea anymore. A good chunk of my rage over the Cristian Guzman contract stemmed from the idea that an interim general manager shouldn't be saddling his rightful successors with a four year contract, especially for a player with Guzman's apparently poor work ethic. One year for Loaiza? Well, fine, I guess. He's not any better than what we already have, but it won't cost us anything long-term. Maybe the Yankees will forget who he is and trade for him at the deadline again.
Speaking of Sosa, I've already discussed how this trade idea is entirely a product of Bowden shooting his mouth off and has about as much a chance of happening as Dayn Perry has of winning a Pulitzer Prize. But let's pretend for a moment that it's feasible (the trade, not the Pulitzer). I don't want any part of Sammy Sosa. One argument put forward is that we need star power on the Nats to bring in the rubes. Unless all those ticket numbers are completely made up, I don't think we need celebrity to sell tickets. Furthermore, this isn't 1998 Sosa we'd be getting. Since he played Salieri to Mark McGwire's Mozart, Sosa has declined in all facets of the game, been caught with cork in his bat, feuded with management to the point that they're openly trying to get rid of him, and become mysteriously bulkier and more acne-afflicted. I can't prove he's been juicing, but he sure looks like another satisfied customer of the Steiner Bros. Training Program. Sosa would get us publicity, but not the good kind.
Would he make us a better team? His offense has declined in each of the last four years, and 2004 was his worst year since 1997. He put up a line of 253/332/517 with 35 homers last year, which is very good. But his stats away from Wrigley were a much less impressive 231/304/474. That's a Vinny Castilla-on-the-road type of line right there. In fact, it's a lot worse than Juan Rivera, in case you're keeping track of Bowden's past blunders. Sosa projects to be a low-OBP guy with good power. Is that better than what he'd be replacing? Once again, it all comes down to what you expect from the husky mystery that is Nick Johnson. Currently, our 1B/LF/RF alignment is either Johnson/Wilkerson/Guillen or Wilkerson/Sledge/Guillen, depending on how long it takes Frank Robinson to find an excuse to bench Nick. Assuming Terrmel "Complete Player" Sledge is the lucky fellow sent to the Cubs, that changes to Wilkerson/Guillen/Sosa. Essentially, Sosa would be replacing Johnson and/or Sledge and at this point in Sosa's career, it's debatable that he'd win us any more games. In fact, if Johnson returns to his 2003 form, it would be a catastrophe. At any rate, Sosa would certainly make the Nationals harder to root for.