TEAMS WITH A TARGET ON THEIR BACK…..


It seems that every year there are a hand full of teams that use the off season to engage in team building. Whether through trades or by signing images (1)high profile free agents- or a combination of both – they seem intent on making a big splash in the pond believing that if the baseball pundits say you’re good……then you (simply) have to be good.  And more importantly, your fans will believe that you are and begin to buy up tickets so you can (hopefully) “pay to play” once the season begins. This Hot Stove season has been no different and there are several teams with a target on their back resulting from their activities…….

Now remember where we were last year at this time. The GM’s in San Diego and Chicago (White Sox) were burning up the transaction wires and the Nationals were a lock to win a World Series with the signing of the most coveted free agent in Max Scherzer……..

Different teams are involved this year though which is interesting. (did last year’s entries learn a lesson?) Enter the Chicago Cubs. Now, let’s preface this by pointing out that

if ownership needs to spend money to reward the loyalty of it’s fan base, it should be a right of passage for the Cubbies. So, Here’s a list of their transactions for just the month of December. Ben Zobrist, Johnny Cueto, and then (the big bang) Justin Heyward. Plus, don’t overlook the acquisition of Adam Warren in the Sterling Castro deal. They’re stacked now, right? And the Cardinals and Pirates should wave the white flag and forfeit the season……

Then we have the perennial also ran Diamondbacks (view their transactions usa-today-8989853.0Here). Indeed, they snapped up the biggest fish in the market in Zach Greinke, plus they added Shelby Miller in a trade Atlanta salivated over in a theft of more prospects added to their ever increasing and talented farm system……..Watch the Braves, their off season is being spent team building for the future……..not tomorrow.

But the Diamondback’s trouble is that they are not the only ones playing this game in theirimages (53) Division. We have yet to hear from the Dodgers with their hoards of cash while the Giants have already raised the pot with the addition (full list here) of Johnny Cueto and Jeff Samardzia to their roster. In Vegas, this would be known as a “push” between the teams in the NL West. And it’s on to the next round of betting……

Look, it’s fun stuff to read about and like you perhaps I grasp at anything I can find pertaining to baseball during the winter……but as we have come to learn and know………the games still have to be played on the field. Yes, these teams have acquired quality players and yes they are legitimate “contenders” in 2016…..but let’s not forget that crucial keyword CONTENDERS ….not winners of anything yet except for the back page of their local and newspaper and other national media……

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