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News Roundup: Tigers Loading Up on the Joneses

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-P- Ryan Braun and Dustin Pedroia won the official Rookie of the Year awards.

-P- The Cubs dealt Jacque Jones and cash for IF Omar Infante. At first it seems like an uninteresting trade of two players who'd fallen out of favor, but Jones had been the Cubs' main center fielder for parts of the season last year. So what this trade appears to do is clear the way for youngster Felix Pie, who struggled in the majors last year but hit well at Class AAA Iowa. Pie has been in the minors forever but is still pretty raw - he strikes out a lot and doesn't yet hit for great power or steal many bases despite obvious potential in both those areas. This year will probably tell a lot about him. As for Infante, there may be a little something there - he looked like he might be somebody after putting up a 101 OPS+ as a 22-year-old in 2004, but he's struggled with the bat since then. In any case, he plays several positions and can be useful off the bench. Of course, with any number of mediocre middle infielders already in the fold - Ryan Theriot, Mike Fontenot, Ronny Cedeno and so on - one wonders why the Cubs thought they needed Santiago, or whether (presumably) getting rid of some of Jones' salary was just that important for them. As for Jones, he probably won't hit much in Comerica, but he should be a decent bat off the bench.

-P- Jacque was one of two Joneses the Tigers recently locked up for 2008 - they re-signed closer Todd Jones for $7 million. A look at Todd's age and numbers gives the impression that he's Jose Mesa-2005 waiting to happen, and $7 million is a lot to pay for that. But with Joel Zumaya on the shelf and a thin free agent market, maybe these are the sorts of moves you have to make.