I was certainly not crazy about the Bill Hall signing so emphatically completed by Houston GM Drayton McLane. Hall was an early target for McLane as the exec hell-bent on replacing Jeff Keppinger with a more power savvy alternate finally got his man. We won’t know the true fate of this trade until it comes to fruition which is the case with any transaction in the sport and about as eye-opening as calling Hall of Fame voters detached. But none the less, it may have been a better acquisition than I had originally given it credit for. At least that’s what some of my baseball blogging compadres are possibly suggesting.
MLBTradeRumors.com is one of my favorite baseball sites. While I don’t usually like to write from atop a soapbox, I will say if you don’t regularly visit the site during the offseason, you’re missing out. The great minds at MLBTradeRumors recently calculated the average contracts given to 2010 free agents by position. The average second baseman free agent this offseason has earned a contract of $4.35 per year. The player closest to that mark is Bill Hall who received $3 million plus incentives from the Houston Astros.
There haven’t been any blockbuster second baseman signings. In fact, the most significant aren’t terribly more exciting than Bill Hall. Orlando Hudson and Juan Uribe are the other most notable second basemen free agents who have signed with San Diego and the Los Angeles team with only one hometown, respectively. Of the three, I’d take Hall’s upside and versatility over the other two players’ consistency and predictability. Plus, Hall will make less and for fewer years. Just as Hall voters seem detached from the current state of the game and the general populous’ interpretation of it, we’ll wait to see how this signing ends up. In any case, Hall certainly wasn’t paid over market value.