I'm in Siena, Italy for a few days, trying to work out the crick in my neck from staring up at the buildings too much. It's pretty cool, but I gotta admit, I am starting to get ready to be back home. Tennis, rafting, friends, and family...plus I have a big list of new stuff to try when I get back, like learning how to play a musical instrument, taking more Spanish classes, and hiking the Appalachian Trail.
Mark - Quick, name a 'proven' player from the 2002 World Champion Anaheim Angels. Name one from the 2003 Florida Marlins besides Pudge Rodriguez. I know where you are coming from, but I don't agree. What defines a 'proven' player? One big hit? The fact that they are on the right team? You argue that the Yankees and Braves have consistently made the playoffs because of proven players...but both those teams have made the playoffs basically every year for the last ten years or so WITH COMPLETELY DIFFERENT PLAYERS from year to year. No more Glavine on the Braves? No prob. No more David Cone or Paul O'Neill or Tino Martinez for the Yankees? Don't worry. It's not about proven players, it is about good players. And I think that getting to the playoffs is huge - once you are in, anything can happen. Beltran is not one of the best players in baseball, yet. But he should get better, and he is pretty good already, so I think he might be worth it.
Andy - You're right, Beltran is not the 2nd coming of ARod. His career high in OPS (911) is lower than Berkman's career OPS (970!!!) And yeah, stolen bases are overrated. But when you take into account his excellent defense and his youth and the fact that the Astros have NO good OF prospects, I think that he would be worth 5/65. Unfortunately, Beltran is represented by Scott Boras...so I think he will get more than that. Let's see how he does this year, though...just 3 years ago I had Beltran on my fantasy team and he sucked it up. So let's see how he does with Big Expectations.