Putting Out the Welcome D-Mat: After it sounded like Scott Boras, agent for Japanese pitcher Daisuke Matsuzaka, had drawn a line in the sand around his client getting $100 million in compensation, reports are now that a deal's been done, with Matsuzaka getting almost half of that on a five-year deal. The word is that D-Mat and agent are on a flight to the East Coast for a physical, and Sox fans are actually watching the plane's progress, cross-country. As a baseball fan, I hope that Matsuzaka's the next Roy Oswalt; as a Yankee fan, I say two words: Hideki Irabu.
Watching Boras fold like this has been a traumatic experience. I guess there are no more heroes anymore.
Bye-Bye Aaron Guiel: Last night was the deadline for teams to offer arbitration to the arb-eligible players under their control. For the Yankees, that meant saying good-bye to outfielder Aaron Guiel. We hardly knew ye, but the Yanks are currently stacked with outfielders, given a starting trio of lefthanded hitters Bobby Abreu/Johnny Damon/Hideki Matsui, and fourth outfielder switch-hitter Melky Cabrera. Guiel, a lefty bat, didn't quite fit in in a scheme where you'd probably want a good righthanded bat if you're going to carry five outfielders.
Phelps Profiled: Speaking of righthanded bats, Marc Normandin at Baseball Prospectus has an in-depth look at Josh Phelps, the Rule 5 Yankee. A taste:
The Yankees more than likely did not pick up a player who is going to slug .500 in the majors over the course of a full season, but Phelps can still contribute. He seems to have regained some of his plate patience, walking in 7.2 percent of all plate appearances for Toledo, and he mashed left-handers to the tune of .322/.382/.638 in 152 at-bats this past year − .294/.358/.502 in his major league career − something Jason Giambi has not been able to do exceptionally well from 2004-2006.
Frivolities Gallore: Most mashups have been disappointing, since the big Shining-as-family-comedy trailer that got the current craze going, but this one, where Toy Story 2 meets Requiem for a Dream, is too funny for words (WARNING: contains language inappropriate for children).