Saturday, September 19, 2009

Will Harden be back?

Rich Harden is done for 2009, and likely done as a Cub.

The Cubs have reportedly decided to shut Harden down after two miserable starts in a row. Tom Gorzelanny will replace him in the rotation.

No one knows what Rich Harden will command as a free agent this offseason. In fact, SI's Jon Heyman asked one GM about a number this year's upcoming free agents, and he wouldn't even hazard a guess as to what kind of offers Harden might receive.

While Buster Olney suggests that the Cubs should have the inside track on Harden if they want to pursue him, I'm guessing that his terrible finish to the 2009 season (to put it more accurately: the fact that he won't even finish the 2009 season) will secure his fate with a team that 1) likely won't have a ton of extra money to toss around, and 2) has enough injury-prone, big-money players already on the roster. It doesn't bode well that Harden supposedly was not aware of his shut-down status until a reporter mentioned it to him after Thursday's game.

If Harden isn't getting any sniffs, and is one of those free agents still available come January, I think he's worth a short-term investment. But if teams come at him with multi-year offers at $9 or $10 milion a year or more, I say walk away.

Harden's got great stuff, and the trade for him was well worth it (Sean Gallagher, Matt Murton, Eric Patterson and minor leaguer Josh Donaldson went to Oakland), but he's inconsistent, can't pile up innings, and goes to the DL as routinely as most people go to the dentist.

I'll take "Illogical" for $200, Alex

Jorge Posada and Jesse Carlson were each suspended four games by Major League Baseball earlier this week, but those suspensions were then reduced to three games on the condition they don't appeal.


Isn't that like reducing a convict's sentence on the condition they don't plea bargain? Or reducing the cost of something on the condition the buyer doesn't try to barter? Why would MLB dole out four-game suspensions if they were willing to drop them to three so long as Posada and Carlson ... did nothing?

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