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Weekend Buzz: Don't be fooled by delay, Beltran will be traded


COOPERSTOWN, N.Y. -- The Weekend Buzz while you were wondering whether new inductee Bert Blyleven was going to give anybody the ol' hot foot at the Hall of Fame induction ceremony. ...

1. Trade deadline: This time next week, Carlos Beltran will be manning center field for Texas. Or, wait, no. He'll be in the Giants' outfield. Philadelphia? Cleveland?

The clock is ticking hard toward next Sunday's trade deadline, and the dealmakers are spending their last precious minutes staring in the mirror, practicing their poker faces.

Carlos Beltran continues to be the most sought after name before MLB's July 31 trade deadline. (Getty Images)  
Carlos Beltran continues to be the most sought after name before MLB's July 31 trade deadline. (Getty Images)  
"I bet seven out of 10 general managers, you can't deal with," an official with one American League club estimated, frustrated with the slow pace of activity so far and citing two reasons as to why: Either the GMs are too insecure to pull the trigger, or they're overvaluing their own players.

Here's a third alternative: The wheels of trade progress ground to a halt over the weekend because so many of the game's executives were making pilgrimages here to honor two incredibly respected colleagues, new Hall of Fame inductee Pat Gillick, the former general manger in Toronto, Seattle, Baltimore and Philadelphia, and Roland Hemond, who received the Buck O'Neil Lifetime Achievement Award.

Gillick currently is a special assistant to Phillies' GM Ruben Amaro Jr. Hemond is a senior consultant in Arizona to Diamondbacks president Derrick Hall.

Amaro and Hall both were in Cooperstown this weekend. So, too, were Tigers GM Dave Dombrowski, Diamondbacks GM Kevin Towers, Brewers GM Doug Melvin, Twins GM Bill Smith and Braves president John Schuerholz.

The difficulty in today's trade market?

"There are a lot of times when people want to hit a home run in making a trade," Gillick said of today's market. "My theory, like the deal with Roberto Alomar [and Joe Carter from San Diego for Fred McGriff and Tony Fernandez] was make a deal that could be good for both clubs.

"Now, it's like somebody wants to hit a home run or a grand slam when they make a trade. That's what makes it so much more difficult. But 25 years ago, we weren't talking about length of contracts or taking on money."

2. Roberto Alomar the first: Confirmed by the Hall of Fame late Sunday: Roberto Alomar is the first son of a major-leaguer to become a Hall of Famer.

3. Mariners lose 15th in a row: Manager Eric Wedge conducted a team meeting following last Thursday's series-ending loss in Toronto. Wanna know how bad these Mariners are? Wedge even followed the cardinal rule in the manager's handbook of team meetings, calling one when his ace -- Felix Hernandez -- was scheduled to pitch the next day. Even that didn't work -- the Mariners were swept in Boston. Next three losses? Hello, Yankee Stadium.

4. Ubaldo Jimenez: Behind Carlos Beltran, Colorado's ace Jimenez could be the most intriguing name on the market. Except rivals still are unsure whether the Rockies are simply gauging his value or really willing to move him. And if they're willing to move him, one executive with a rival club offers this: "I want to know if he's hurt. Something's not right there if they're making him available."

5. Colby Rasmus to White Sox? Cardinals manager Tony La Russa says Jon Jay now is his primary center fielder, thus extending his streak of having had quite enough of Rasmus to two consecutive summers.

6. Angels looking for third base help: Nearly a year after acquiring him, it's all but official: Alberto Callaspo is not the guy to lead the Angels to the promised land. Sources say owner Arte Moreno has approved adding payroll and that the Angels, who trailed Texas by 3 1/2 games on Sunday, are seeking a third baseman on the trade market. The Angels have inquired on the Cubs' Aramis Ramirez, according to one source with knowledge of the talks, but Ramirez has yet to indicate he will waive his no-trade clause.

7. Grady's ladies do not approve: Huge hit for Cleveland, losing Grady Sizemore for four to six weeks to a sports hernia. With upcoming series against the Angels, Red Sox, Rangers and Tigers over the next two weeks, we'll soon learn whether Cleveland will be a player in September.

8. Pat Gillick on Sabermetrics: Interjecting an answer when someone asked Bert Blyleven about new stats that aided his Hall of Fame candidacy, Gillick noted Blyleven's 287 wins and said, "It's whoever wins. It's whoever wins 90 to 100 games. Forget quality starts. Forget all that other stuff. It's whoever wins the game."

9. Padres ship Anthony Rizzo to minors: He was hitting .143 with one homer and struck out 36 times in his 98 at-bats since his June promotion. And he was 1 for his past 25 (a single). In a related story, Padres decline to hire as scouts all those fans who viewed him as the franchise's savior and bombarded talk radio in April and May demanding his promotion.

10. Congratulations, Cubs: That modest three-game winning streak with Sunday's 5-4 win over Houston? The Cubs became the last team in the majors this year to win three in a row.


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