Thursday, January 28, 2010

On Bedard and what we know (we know)

So the product of arguably the worst trade in Mariner history is a free agent, rehabbing from his torn labrum surgery.  Erik Bedard is making, by all accounts, lovely progress and is anywhere from 3 to 5 months from being able to toe the rubber in game action - somewhere between April and June (which is why most say May).

How do all us Mariner fans know this? Well, he was hurt on Seattle's watch, so Rick Griffin has been keeping in close contact with him, working with him to get him healthy.

I find this arrangement curious.  Not only does Seattle get a nice report from Rick about the health of Bedard, but Bedard is also in a situation where he's working under a plan set forth by his surgeon and Rick Griffin, with Griffin providing the oversight and guidance on said plan.  Once Bedard signs with another club, that training staff gets to take over.

As one great (cough, cough) Secretary of Defense once said, "There are known knowns. These are things we know that we know. There are known unknowns. That is to say, there are things that we now know we don’t know. But there are also unknown unknowns. These are things we do not know we don’t know."


We know Bedard is good when he's healthy
We know we need a pitcher
We know Bedard has pitched hurt for two years
We know we have closer contact with Bedard than any other team.
We know starting pitching options are evaporating.

We don't know how much he pitched hurt the last two years.
We don't know if Bedard feels any loyalty whatsoever to the organization that paid so dearly for him.  But he may feel some kind of weird obligation to prove himself.  I wouldn't bet on it.  But you never know.
We don't know if his progress really is going well.
We don't know if Griffin knows how his progress is going, even when he says it's going well.
We don't know how much Griffin and the M's brass talk about his progress, but you have to assume it's frequent.
We don't know if Bedard is in their plans.

We do not know that we don't know that Bedard is an alien.  But that's just a guess.

Okay, enough with that.

Point is... Bedard might not pitch until June.  That probably scares clubs and likely is hurting the market for him to get a solid guaranteed contract.  Griffin might know that he's going to be ready to go in April.  If that's the case, the M's might be more likely to gamble on guaranteed money with a little less on the incentive side.

All this speculation is suggesting that I wouldn't mind it if they went ahead and made a commitment to Bedard now.  Or soon.  If they're comfortable with his progress, I say why not.  When he's healthy, he's got electric stuff. 

If he goes to the Orioles and has a fantastic year, Bill Bavasi is going to get a box of my kids excrement for a year.

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