-P- The Rockies have signed LaTroy Hawkins to a one-year deal worth $3.5 million. After three consecutive excellent years from 2002 to 2004, Hawkins' strikeout to walk ratios declined in 2005 and then stayed low in 2006, as he struck out just 27 batters in 60 innings. However, Hawkins was dealing was groin problems last year, and in this market, "one year, $3.5 million" is almost like the new "minor league contract." The Rockies are asking for trouble if they count on Hawkins too much next year, though.
-P- Via Primer, the White Sox have re-signed Scott Podsednik. Contrary to popular opinion, Podsednik is a crappy player, but he's only slightly worse than Juan Pierre. Pierre got five years and $45 million in this market, while Podsednik only got one year and $2.9 million. Unlike Pierre, Podsednik was eligible for arbitration, but that's still a spectacular difference for two similar players.
Podsednik shouldn't be starting - he'll probably win the job back, though he might have to compete with Jerry Owens, another similar player who won't be an improvement - but you've still got to count this $2.9 million deal as a minor victory for White Sox fans. After all, in 2005, some idiots were trying to claim that Podsednik should be the MVP. Sox fans should thank their lucky stars that the team hasn't decided to pay him like one.