Quick note about Beltran before I get back to studying for my test in an hour.
Kent and Hidalgo are scheduled to make $20.5 million combined this year. Their options for 2005 are $9 million and $15 million, respectively. My point...McLane just needs to bone up and spend some more money this next offseason.
So here's my ideal offseason. You sign Berkman and Oswalt to 4 year deals...maybe backload them just a little bit...you know, for when Bagwell's contract is finally off the books. You could probably get each for $10 million/year each. Berkman's already making $6.5 million this year, so that jump don't represent a lot more. Oswalt's not making shit this year, so that would be a big jump. But say that's like $13 million / year increase for the two combined. Who's to say they can't be had for a little cheaper?? Then you just pony up and sign Beltran. I don't care how...JUST DO IT! Otherwise, our offense is gonna suck in a few years. If you pay Beltran $15 million / year, then you've increased payroll about $28 million for these 3 players. But you got then after dropping over $20 million in payroll in Kent and Hidalgo (who's options for the year would've cost $24 million).
So who would you rather have:
Kent and Hidalgo for one more year at $24 million, or
Oswalt, Berkman, and Beltran locked up to long-term deals for an increase of $28 million to payroll.
One more thing I forgot...I believe we only signed Clemens for a year. If I'm correct, that's another $5 million we no longer have on the books next year. My final point: the money's going to be there if McLane will just be willing to spend it. And I can't remember the last really good, YOUNG player that we've signed...I think we're due.
That is all.