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Sexson and Beltre to the Mariners? Pedro to the Mets? Gizzi to the Expos? (Hey, it could happen in an insane world, which we apparently inhabit, baseball-wise.) Millions and millions and millions of guaranteed dollars? What in tarnation? OK, the Mariners will be better next year, but good enough to topple the Angels? Or the A's? Or even the Rangers?

These topics, and other free agent phenomena, have been discussed on various threads, and here is yet one more various thread to ... erm ... discuss them. So ... ahem ... discuss.
Post 'em if you got 'em!
So Jays fans, in your memories, will you always have Parris? (The spelling's a bit off, true.) Does Cleveland rock? Do you enjoy a Boston marathon? Fly South to see Lima? Does Houston have a problem? Many ballplayers have or had place names as first or last names. Which leads to today's ....

Question of the Day: Who can we get to fill out the roster of an All-Geography Hall of Names team? Alternate spellings are fine, but see if you can't somehow fill out a separate team for first and last names. Here are some starter suggestions ...
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Finally, someone let me out of my cage
Now, time for me is nothing, 'cause I'm counting no age
Now I couldn't be there
Now you shouldn't be scared
I'm good at repairs
And I'm under each snare

So long, Anaheim. Hello, Rogers Skydome and press conference to introduce Corey Koskie this afternoon. Paging Matt Clement....
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It's Rule 5 draft day, and so today's question concerns prospects. Which minor league player that you saw (or studied for fantasy league purposes) surprised you the most, positively or negatively, when he arrived in the Show?

Mine are Pete Incaviglia and Rusty Greer.

There's a picture opposite me of my primitive ancestry
Who stood on rocky shores and kept the beaches shipwreck-free
Though I respect that a lot, I'd be fired if that were my job
After killing Jason off and countless screaming Argonauts

Pending the physical, it appears we can say welcome to Toronto, Corey Koskie.
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There's a rumor going around, and like all rumors this time of year, there's a 98% chance it's false. But it's a fun rumor, so we'll play around with it.

The rumor is that there will be a 3-way trade between Oakland, Toronto, and some contender. The contender will get Tim Hudson, and who knows what the Jays and A's will get.

Here's your challenge:
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So you're probably waiting for the punchline ... we've certainly taken our fair share of shots at the Archbishop of Boston Baseball here at Batter's Box, occasionally pointing out his, *ahem*, spotty record of prognosticating trades and transactions.

But in case you hadn't heard, Peter Gammons is headed to the Hall of Fame ... sort of, anyway, as the 2004 recipient of the J.G. Taylor Spink Award.

What better way to salute him than with song lyrics?
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Your daily dose of the rumor mill:
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Some rumors floating around today:
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The prevailing wisdom says that the staggeringly irrational $45 million contract forked out by the Diamondbacks to Troy Glaus has ratcheted up the free-agent marketplace (aside: you don't think Jeff Moorad is getting champagne gift baskets from his former player-agent colleagues right now?), and that Carlos Delgado will be one of the biggest beneficiaries. So today's question is:

Q: Where will Carlos Delgado end up, for how many years, and for what total amount?
Well, you play that Tarantella
And the hounds begin to roar
The boys all go to hell
And then the Cubans hit the floor

The Winter Meetings start today, though there's been no shortage of action beforehand. Check out Peter Gammons' latest for a nice summary of the buzz, including the increasingly insane Arizona Diamondbacks preparing to ink Russ Ortiz to a 4-year, $34 million contract. I don't ever want to hear Ortiz or Troy Glaus complain to anyone that they want to "play for a winner" after signing rich long-term deals with a 111-loss club.

And then there's the Jays, and their reliable and open-minded local press coverage.
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If you're here and reading this, well, good, and welcome (or welcome back) to Batter's Box. Now, there are several ways currently open to you to contribute to several ongoing Batter's Box projects.
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Jan lays down and wrestles in her sleep
Moonlight spills on comic books
And superstars in magazines
An old friend calls and tells us where to meet
Her plane takes off from Baltimore
And touches down on Bourbon Street

The Blue Jays are in Anaheim this week, but not to play the Angels. The Winter Meetings are getting underway, and at the rate that free agents are being gobbled up, it seems likely that GM JP Ricciardi will try to make his moves as early as possible. Fiscal responsibility in baseball? The broken-down, 111-loss Diamondbacks are about to sign broken-down Troy Glaus to a 4-year, $41 million contract. What fiscal responsibility?

Welcome to the Winter Meetings, folks. First come, first served.
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This has come up in a few threads, so why not make it a question of the day.

Suppose you're the Blue Jays and you have roughly $14 million dollars to spend on free agents. I don't know the exact figure, but we'll go with $14 million.

Given the free agents available today, how would you spend that money? The Jays have a big hole at 1B, and like all teams, could always use more pitching. Would you spend all the money on one or two players or would you fill in five or six holes?

Bonus points go for creative but realistic answers. No "I'd sign Beltran for $2 mil a year" answers, please.