Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Crede Avoids Arbitration; Hell Does Not Freeze Over

Kenny Williams and Rick Hahn avoided the ugly, bloodletting ceremony that is arbitration with the main man-crush of White Sox fandom, Joe Crede. Scott Boras, the Dr. Evil of sports agents and the object of Kenny Williams' ire in the past, allowed Crede to sign a one year deal for a paltry $4.94 million dollars -- some $3 million less than what Joe was speculated to be asking for. Boras and the White Sox have been shaky partners in the past and KW has gone so far as to say he won't he deal with Boras or sign Boras clients.

So why the jovial about-face? Is Joe Crede secretly Kirk Hinrich in a White Sox uniform?

No, the White Sox own arbitration rights with Joe until after 2008, and the market is only gonna explode to even grander proportions after this season. And I'm betting Scott Boras offered Joe Crede his first-born to take the lower money in advance of a greater payday down the road. After all, Boras will have exhausted his A-Rod blood money by then, and Joe will be his new golden goose.

In related news, reports say it was business as usual in hell yesterday, and there was nary a snow flake to be seen.


Blogger Fornelli said...

Or maybe, just maybe, when Joe Crede said in an interview that he decides where he wants to play, not Scott Boras, he meant it.

Maybe Joey Clutch loves us as much as we love him.

1:56 PM, January 17, 2007  
Blogger jamesmnordbergjr said...

Dare to dream, Tom.

2:26 PM, January 17, 2007  
Blogger Cubby_Dog said...

Crede is the Sox best move this winter? A one year deal? A one year deal to one of the best 3B in the league? Wow! That must feel great Nordberg. Just great. Good to see your Sox are busy.

3:27 PM, January 17, 2007  
Blogger jamesmnordbergjr said...

Ok, Dog, I'm not gonna sink to the level of warring with words about whose team is inherently better -- a 2005 World Series ring should do all the talking for me -- but in the interest of discussing baseball, specifically the economics of baseball...

The White Sox actually control Crede thru 2008 having arbitration rights next off-season, and in the eyes of fiscal responsibility, KW has crafted another nice move. Crede is as great a bargain as they come, and when a few more salaries come off the books next season, KW will have more money to offer Crede. Keep in mind also that 3B Josh Fields is one of the top three prospects in the Sox organization, and he's getting to the point where they'll need to play him or trade him to get any value for him.

One other Crede issue to consider is his balky back and his refusal to have surgery. Consequently each off-season for Joe will become more tedious with his extensive rehab program. Why won't he just bite the bullet and have the surgery, and what happens if the back completely breaks down? Will he be worth 5 years at $55 million then? No. Consider that he slumped badly in early September mostly due to back troubles, and in 2005 after being injured in August -- and receiving subsequent rest -- he exploded in September and October mostly due to that rest. So maybe the Sox can't count on him for 500 AB's every year.

KW was actually pretty shrewd with this deal, and Joe was actually pretty accommodating (hence the Hinrich line), and this by no means doesn't mean KW won't trade Crede for a big package later on in the year.

4:52 PM, January 17, 2007  
Blogger Soxually Repressed said...

That price gives Williams a LOT of room to move, trade-wise. Also protects in the event of back problems. We all like Crede, but he isn't worth more without a better track record health-wise. PLUS, anything that keeps more money out of his agent's pocket is good news.

Lastly, the Sox haven't lit the world afire with their off-season moves. It still looks like they would be the better CHICAGO team if the season started today. Since the Cubs GM is better at spending Tribune cash than trading for upgrades in talent, that trend wouldn't appear to have reason to change before Opening Day.

10:39 AM, January 18, 2007  

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