He'll be that Clint Eastwood type who rides in and saves the village, but he might not hang around after to check the housing ads. He is a helluva pitcher, though.
Anyway, here's a quick survey of what some are saying about the left-hander's pending trade from Baltimore to Seattle, as first reported last night by one-time Toronto Star baseball writer Geoff Baker.
The USS Mariner is absolutely cutting the potential sacrifice of hitting propsect Adam Jones to ribbons:
"Having two great pitchers is awesome, but unless you're cloning Pedro MartinezHere's Steve Kelley from the Seattle Times. To be brutally honest, the first association was how some Leafs fans (present company included) reacted in June 2006 after John Ferguson Jr. traded for Andrew Raycroft. We believed what we wanted to believe:
in his prime, you better have a good supporting cast around them if you want to win consistently. The Mariners supporting cast now includes a DH in left field, a hole in right field, an enigma at second base, one of the worst first basemen in baseball, and a DH whose career is teetering on the verge of extinction. They also don't have any organizational depth in position players, so an injury to a key player (say, Ichiro or Adrian Beltre) pretty much ends their season before it starts."
"For the first time in about five years, they would have a rotation that can compete. With Bédard and (Félix) Hérnandez, they can avoid the seven-game losing streaks that sunk last season.Was it that long ago Seattle won 116 games in a season? The Baltimore Sun is sure it's going down:
"Adding Bédard, along with free-agent right-hander Carlos Silva, would immunize the M's from an August collapse. This new-and-improved staff, combined with the Mariners' bullpen, would, at the very least, make this summer the sweetest in Seattle in years."
"As much as I cringe at the thought of relinquishing a homegrown No. 1 starter, a rebuilding team needs to move a pitcher that can bring back so much in return. A pitcher who seemingly wants to be on a club that's ready to contend now and looks at rebuilding the way Kevin Millar would look at a butterfly tattoo on a teammate’s lower back.One spin that we are likely to hear is how much Bédard's numbers will benefit from pitching half his games at Safeco Field instead of Camden Yards in Baltimore and not having to face all those big, bad Red Sox and Yankees hitters. His numbers should get a boost, but people tend to exaggerate the impact.
"... wish Jeremy Guthrie lots of luck as the Opening Day starter. And perhaps become nostalgic for the days when fourth place was assured, because this season, without Bédard and possibly (leadoff hitter) Brian Roberts, could get ugly."
Bédard's ERA has tended to be more a than half run per game better in Camden Yards (which isn't the hitter's haven that people believe it is) than it is on the road. (2.81 to 3.47 in 2007; 3.52 to 4.14 lifetime). The sample sizes are too small to really determine anything, but his ERAs against New York and Boston are 3.58 and 4.95, compared to 4.12 and 6.18 against Oakland and the L.A. Angels. It won't be as big a deal as some people think. At the very least, those of us who are nocturnal will be able to follow his games closely if he pitches for a West Coast team.
If anyone at Rogers Sportsnet really cared about baseball, they would be making sure as many of Bédard's starts as possible are aired, if he goes to Seattle.
(One last thing: Knowing Orioles owner Peter Angelos, he probably keeps Bédard... it's the difference between 63-99 and 58-104 this season.)
Bédard still waiting on the call; Expected trade to Mariners not done deal yet (Don Campbell, Ottawa Citizen)