In the evening, I found myself in a conversation with former Dodger general manager Fred Claire. For the most part, I listened, but then Claire turned to me and asked my thoughts about the Dodgers, specifically Steve Finley. Without denying that Finley perhaps should have been offered salary arbitration, I offered my theory about why the Dodgers didn’t: The fact that he settled for $14 million over two years from the Angels, compared to the nearly $10 million he might have won for a single season in arbitration from the Dodgers, indicated that he might well have accepted the Dodger offer - thus hampering their pursuit of Adrian Beltre, catching and/or pitching. Now, as my life goes on, I’m going to tell myself that the following was a coincidence, but I will say that it appeared to many that immediately after my pontification, Claire politely but quickly excused himself from the group, you know, the way you might excuse yourself from a crazy homeless person you accidentally found yourself too close for comfort to.
More on the Finley thing, I read an article somewhere that not offering Finley a deal may actually make it harder for the DePodesta to sign Beltre, because it makes it look like the Dodgers look like they aren't serious about winning. Of course, the source of that was Beltre's agent, Scott Boras, who's currently saying that Beltre had the greatest season by third baseman ever. Um, no. Sorry Scott, Adrian's a pretty good player, but he's probably not even the best third baseman in the league.