Today’s Idiot: Joe Maddon
Joe Maddon is the manager for the Tampa Bay Rays. He’s got his young team in first place in baseball’s toughest division and they’re playing well. They’ve pitched well, fielded even better and hit enough to win a lot of ball games.
Last night, the Yankees (3 games behind Tampa Bay) traded four minor league prospects for Pittsburgh outfielder Xavier Nady and left-handed reliever Damaso Marte. Both players were targeted by Tampa Bay, but they balked at Pittsburgh’s asking price. So what was Maddon’s response to the Yankees ponying up the necessary prospects to obtain Nady and Marte?
It doesn’t surprise me, that’s the way they do things. They’re going to buy people at the appropriate time.
I sense there’s some resentment in Tampa. Tampa Bay has a farm system that’s regarded by many as the best in baseball, and much better than New York’s. If Tampa had truly wanted Nady and Marte (who are also under contract through 2009 at a decent price) all they had to do was part with some minor leaguers. They didn’t and the Yankees did. That’s why Marte and Nady are playing for the Yankees, not because New York “bought” them, but because they were willing to take a risk to improve their team this year.