Right Field

Reveille 1/7/13

Good morning.

Here are several go-to links to make the first Monday of 2013 a bit more bearable:

Public opinion of the Rangers’ offseason seems to have taken a negative tone — they lost Josh Hamilton to free agency, and were unable to lure Zack Greinke into their clutches. But despite these two misses the sky is most definitely not falling in Texas. Between its additions around the edges, its addition by subtraction and the trio of prospects that it will graduate to the majors, the team should be primed for a fourth consecutive pennant chase in 2013.

  • In news unlikely to greatly improve the mood of Mets fans, Rich Sandomir of the New York Times explores what the owners might do with the more than $160 million they received in funds from a recent round of loan refinancing.

  • SB Nation’s Rob Neyer remains doubtful that the notoriously old-school front office of the Twins is embracing analytics to a significant degree.

  • Those same fans might at least chuckle about three less-than-beloved former Mets now taking up space on the Mariners’ 40-man roster: Oliver Perez, Jason Bay, and, as of last Thursday, Mike Jacobs. In fairness, Jeff Sullivan of Lookout Landing points out that Jacobs is unlikely to see much time in the majors this season:

He swings hard, he strikes out, he doesn’t walk, and he’s clumsy in the field. He can slug somewhere in the neighborhood of .500 and that’s basically going to be his job. Also, he’s a veteran, so you can think of this as being the Tacoma equivalent of the Raul Ibanez signing. Jacobs’ greatest asset might be his knowledge of how the major leagues work, and next year’s Rainiers could and should be loaded with top prospects. If the Mariners believe that Ibanez can help the young guys in the bigs, they probably believe that Jacobs can help the young guys on the verge. Maybe he will help or maybe he won’t. Maybe Jacobs will be a replacement-level player in the PCL, too.

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  • Brian Kenny interviews Cooperstown Confidential author Zev Chafets on the history of the Hall of Fame’s “character clause” and how it may impact this offseason’s vote.

That’s it. Have a walk-off week!

Jason Epstein is the president of Southfive Strategies, LLC. He was a public-relations consultant for the Turkish embassy in Washington from 2002 to 2007.


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