Sigh. This is the type of move that really annoys me. No, it’s not a team-killer, and no, it’s not real surprising after what we’ve all been hearing over the last two weeks (although I certainly did not expect them to just let him go) – but it just comes off as kind of, well, dumb. Ryan Garko is a more valuable player than Mike Sweeney – he’s younger, he’s got significantly more upside at this point, and he can actually play first base. There’s no way that this organization doesn’t realize that – they aren’t stupid. What that means is that they’re making this decision based on something other than value and talent, which isn’t the best way to do things when you’re trying to build a winning team. They’re doing this for team chemistry reasons, which is something we’ve already seen once this off season with the Griffey signing. The Griffey signing, however, I could handle, as an isolated event. I didn’t think back then that there was any chance of Sweeney coming back.
I think what annoys me the most is that this organization has made so many good moves this off season, and done so much work to turn this team into a contender – work that a lot of organizations probably aren’t smart enough to orchestrate. But then they’re faced with such an easy decision, and they opt to go the route of team chemistry, and putting stock in Spring Training stats, rather than taking the route of on-field value. Please, Sweeney-supporters: Don’t get me wrong. I really like Mike Sweeney, and a small part of me is really happy for him that he’s going to make this team. However, Mike Sweeney is a rich major league baseball player who could easily find a coaching job to quench his baseball thirst and continue to be set for life – I care much more about this team’s success than I do about him getting a shot to hold on for one more season.
I guess that’s the end of my rant. Hopefully, this won’t turn out to be too big of a deal. It’s just one of those things.