Monday, Dec. 10, 2007

Brewers Get Gagne

By Nicole
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Brewers get Gagne
December 09, 2007 | 05:46 PM

I'll be the first to say I didn't see this one coming. Apparently Doug Melvin knows how to wait it out, because the Eric Gagne talk had all but disappeared here in Milwaukee as there were other teams interested.

Instead I awoke this morning to news that, pending a physical, Eric Gagne will be the Brewers' closer next season.

From the vantage point that I don't want Derrick Turn-blown-save as our closer, this is spectacular. But I'm prone to misgivings any time we offer a guy a 1-year reportedly $10 million dollar contract.

It irks me that we would only sign our next closer (whomever he was going to be) to one year. It feels that the disappointment of last season has led to a push that this season must be the season. I understand we have all the tools, but I don't know that we're at "now or never" quite yet. If this coming season proves to be as much of a learning season as last one was, then we've blown a lot of money and we'll be in the same boat closer-wise, next season.

That being said, we were offering more than $10 mil a year for CoCo and at least if something were to happen to Gagne, who isn't young anymore and has had two surgeries on his elbow (one in '06) and (also in '06) had back surgery. So we're secure in not getting stuck with a big contract on an injured guy.

And if Gagne has a good year, if we lose him to free agency, he'll be the type of free agent that brings us two extra draft picks.

There were talks that if we did get Gagne, he and Turnbow would be "fighting" for closer role. The $10 mil salary puts that to rest. No way you pay a guy that much that isn't "your guy."

This column, that ran in today's Journal Sentinel, says that Ned Yost expected to field more interest in our over-loaded pitching core at the Winter Meetings than we did. That we have a surplus of pitchers is news to no-one. According to the column, Yost and Melvin figure they'll be getting the calls once names like Santana are off the board.

Nicole
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