Dare to dream:

Astros GM Ed Wade said the team has interest in bringing Willy Taveras to camp on a minor league deal if he clears waivers.

It makes me happy when NL Central teams do dumb stuff.

Funny how no one wanted the guy other than Walt Jocketty before last season, and all he’s probably going to get now is a minor league deal…but Jocketty deemed Taveras worthy of a two-year, multi-million dollar contract. Jocketty has definitely made strides toward redeeming himself, but geez, that was a stinker of a decision. And most of us knew it at the time. Not rocket science.

Oh well, Wee Willy is no longer a Red and there’s a chance he’ll be making outs for a rival club in 2010. Stuff like this makes me even more optimistic for the upcoming season (and I’m already getting too optimistic for anyone’s good).

14 Responses

  1. BJ Ruble

    Their farm system is so horrible, he adds depth in case if they have major injuries. Plus he is still a fan favorite for some, not all, but some Astros fans.

  2. david

    There were actually a couple of other teams in on Taveras last season. The Reds, Nationals, and White Sox were all in on Taveras. The Nationals extended a contract but it was for just one year. The whole thing was whether Taveras’ OBP would be closer to 2007 (.367) or 2008 (.308). I’ve got no sympathy for Taveras and his year of suck, but coming down hard on Jocketty as the only guy interested in Taveras is inaccurate.

  3. Chad Dotson

    @david: Any support for your contention that the Nats and ChiSox wanted Taveras? You may be right, but I didn’t remember that, and I can’t find anything to support those teams being involved (admittedly, I just did a quick search). All I remember is the Rockies wanting to wash their hands of him.

    If that’s the case, that does change the way I view the contract that was given out (in terms of the numbers, it was still ill-advised even to sign him in the first place).

    Forgive me, however, if I consider that a tepid defense of Jocketty, at best. This one can be laid solely at Jocketty’s feet, and anyone who was paying attention knew it was destined for failure from day one.

  4. hoosierdad

    @Chad Dotson: According to Tracy Ringolsby of the Rocky Mountain News, at the time the Reds signed WT, the Yankees, Red Sox, Marlins, and White Sox were all in trade discussions with the Rockies for his services. Of course, that begs the question if they were interested in him why didn’t they sign him as a FA when he was not resigned by the Rockies. Apparently, the other teams backed off of him due to his stress fracture in 2008 and on-going leg muscle problems in 2007.

  5. david

    The quick source was from the Denver Post. http://www.denverpost.com/rockies/ci_11227465?source=rss

    The story hoosierdad wrote about is here. http://www.rockymountainnews.com/news/2008/dec/12/rockies-likely-will-cut-ties-with-taveras-friday/?partner=RSS

    I can’t find the Nationals offer sheet rumor. I could be mistaken, but I’m fairly certain that’s why the Reds got him, because they upped the offer of the Nats by adding an additional year.

    Also, Eric Seidman from Fangraphs.com presents an argument for the signing. http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/index.php/free-willy He explains my position beautifully. I don’t think it was an awful signing at the time. It was a very risky signing and a risk that didn’t pan out. Sometimes that happens in business.

  6. TC

    I’ve been extremely busy at work these past couple days. But I’ve made time to check the blog when I’ve had a minute or two. I had to come out of the woodwork for this thread though.

    Funny thing, rumors. If only half were true, what a messed up league this would be. Well, perhaps half are true then. Regardless, good find HD.

    But I digress. I CAN vouch for Chad when he says most “knew it was destined for failure from day one.” A few months ago there was a thread discussing one of 2009’s favorite topics here, that is how much everyone wanted WT gone. Someone said they knew it was a bad idea the day WJ signed him. I went back in the RNR archive and dug up the threads both regarding the rumors and the thread on the day the actual deal took place. I further looked at random threads with a WT heading, especially during late spring training and during the early season while WT was doing well. The guys here, almost to a man, were not happy with the acquisition and especially not fooled when he did well.

    It’s amazing how much damage the guy did to the Reds fandom. He’s been gone a few weeks, and we still, myself included, are talking about him.

  7. Greg Dafler

    The second year didn’t make sense and still doesn’t today. It was a 1 year $6 million deal the day it was made, and any contribution he could make in 2010 was gravy. Trading him for Miles shaved a little off that $6M.

    That was when Bowden was still GM, right? He liked to attach himself to every free agent and trade candidate…plus, I could see him doing something like this to try and stick it to the Reds.

  8. pinson343

    Wee Willie has gone home. His defense impressed me in his Houston days, he didn’t have problems (that I can recall) with that hill out there.

  9. The Mad Hatter


    Referring to him as an Astros fan favorite is kinda funny. I went to a few Round Rock Express games last year and as a promotion they were giving out commemorative coins. I received something like Jason Lane and Brad Lidge. It was set up in a series so that you had to go to the ballpark 5 times to get the set. What made me laugh at the time (actually I think it was cry) was that Wee Willy was being honored as one of the 10 greatest Round Rock Expressess of all time. That farm system isn’t producing anything.

    • david

      @The Mad Hatter: I don’t know that I did refer to him as a fan favorite. I think I was just responding to TC’s comment about how he’s gone yet we still talk about him, like Dunn. The difference is that the Dunn talk was longing affection, while the talk with Taveras is 180 degrees. That’s why I called him the anti-Dunn.

  10. TC

    @david: Yes, exactly! Same result, but for different reasons I guess. Speaking on that, btw david, I didn’t care when Dunn was traded. I WAS very sad when Jr was dealt though. I’m sure many were happy to see him go, but I was a true believer in The Kid. Every time I went to the ballyard I felt the weight of watching history in the making. It was truly a special thing to have Jr in Cincinnati for all those years. Dunn… ahh.

    • pinson343

      TC: @david: I WAS very sad when Jr was dealt though.I’m sure many were happy to see him go, but I was a true believer in The Kid.Every time I went to the ballyard I felt the weight of watching history in the making.It was truly a special thing to have Jr in Cincinnati for all those years.

      I accepted the Junior trade, which has actually turned out to be a good one for the Reds. It had become inevitable and I liked it that he was traded to a team going to the post-season (White Sox of course). And I’m happy he’s back in Seattle.

      But that didn’t stop me from feeling a sadness to his departure. I saw him at Yankee Stadium last year, he almost hit a foul pole HR against Mariano Rivera, I was just a few feet away. You still feel electricity when he swings.

      I want to see him make it to the WS this year and win his ring, unless of course Seattle’s opponent is the Reds.

  11. The Mad Hatter

    My bad, my comment should have been directed at BJ Ruble.