Veteran Pitchers Everywhere

The week after the trade deadline is always fun. The waiver wire rumors may lack the intrigue and publicity of their free trading big brother, but the amount of movement we saw this week, specifically with veteran pitchers. Here’s a recap of the frenzy.

After Sidney Ponson’s latest effort, the doughty cousin of Radhames Dykhoff was designated for assignment by the Royals. ERA can and does lie and probably did Ponson in more than anything. Ponson’s FIP was a decent a 4.69, eons better than his 7.36 ERA. No word yet on whether Ponson has cleared waivers or if louche behavior played into the transaction.

The Yankees signed Russ Ortiz for added depth meanwhile the heir to that position, Brett Tomko, was signed by the Athletics. Much like Ponson, Ortiz is the sufferer of a poor ERA and figures to spend more time in Triple-A than the majors. Tomko is an interesting addition if solely due to the tidbit that if he reaches the majors this would be his fourth California-based team to do so with, leaving only the Angels. Here’s hoping Tony Reagins hands him a contract during the winter.

Not to be outdone by their bitter rivals the Red Sox re-added Paul Byrd. I’m not entirely sure why, since the Red Sox have a surplus of young starters close to the majors, including that guy Clay Buchholz. Byrd has familiarity with the team and all that goodness, but it still seems odd given the Red Sox’s refusal to find consistent starts for Buchholz or Michael Bowden.

Joe Nelson’s time in the majors dates back to 2001. Since the often-injured journeyman has made trips to the show with Boston, Kansas City, Florida, and currently with Tampa Bay. Somehow a minor league option remained on Nelson’s book and the Rays exercised it this past weekend. Nelson had been ineffective at best since transitioning to the American League.

Oh yeah and Mike Koplove was traded to the Mariners. I’m not sure anyone else can top that.

We hoped you liked reading Veteran Pitchers Everywhere by R.J. Anderson!

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WY

Good point about Byrd. At this point, the last thing they need is another past-his-prime veteran to add depth to the back of the rotation. The back of their rotation is very deep; it’s the front that needs more depth.

What do you think about Smoltz’s continued struggles? I know you wrote the earlier article about him being better than his results. (I’m not trying to be obnoxious — I’m genuinely curious. And no, I am not a Red Sox or Braves fan, but I do like Smoltz.)