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  1. Seattle has to be delighted that he’s leaving the money on the table. Having an extra 16 million to spend over the next two years could bring the team back to relevance even faster.

    Comment by Gary — October 19, 2009 @ 4:18 pm

  2. Unless of course they choose to spend it on the same type of player that they spent it on the first time around….

    Comment by Mike — October 19, 2009 @ 6:52 pm

  3. It wasn’t an ill-advised Bill Bavasi contract, it was an ill-advised contract that ownership forced on management because it wanted to take care of a Japanese player, if I recall correctly.

    Comment by Kevin S. — October 19, 2009 @ 7:03 pm

  4. Considering it’s a completely different front office with a much better track record so far, that seems unlikely.

    Comment by joser — October 19, 2009 @ 8:15 pm

  5. If you can offer any actual substantiation of that, I’d be interested to see it. A lot of people presumed or suggested that, at the time and since, but I haven’t seen any statements by anyone with actual knowledge — Kenji, his agent, the Mariners front office (past or present) or ownership — that that was the case. We don’t know for certain that M’s ownership makes special requests on behalf of players, but we definitely do know that Bavasi hands out ill-advised contracts; therefore, until evidence to the contrary comes to light Occam suggests that it’s perfectly reasonable to put this one onto the rather substantial pile of Bavasi mistakes.

    Comment by joser — October 19, 2009 @ 8:22 pm

  6. I think you are asking for a level of proof that is going to be mighty hard to find, especially with how poor the contract turned out to be. Only Bavasi has something to gain by making a statement on the contract.

    But USS Mariner had this to say:
    “Yes, the Johjima extension happened entirely at an ownership level, and the baseball operations team had basically nothing to do with that decision.”

    Comment by Brian Joura — October 19, 2009 @ 8:45 pm

  7. There shouldn’t be much doubt that Moore will be the starter. Moore is already better both offensively and defensively than Johnson; Johnson had 9 passed balls last season in only 80 games, and there were quite a few “wild pitches” he also should have handled. I’ll give Johnson a little bit of the benefit of the doubt here, as he is having double hip surgery (one down, one to go) over the off season, so lack of mobility may account for some of that. But having said that, with double hip surgery is he likely to be better this coming season?

    Moore has a much higher offensive upside, there is no reason not to play him. Even if Moore has a rough adjustment to big league pitching and is starts the season totally lost at the plate, that will just bring him down to Johnson’s level. Johnson is perfectly fine as a backup, but there is no reason he should be starting more than once a week.

    Comment by Kazinski — October 20, 2009 @ 3:05 am

  8. It may be due to the lack of communication via the language barrier, but Johjimas inability to call a game hurt the Mariners pitching staff. The pitcher team ERA when Johjima was catching was over 5.5 while it was around 2.75 when Johsnon was behind the plate

    Comment by Matt — October 20, 2009 @ 1:03 pm

  9. You need to contextualize catcher ERA. Johnson caught Felix every start and caught most of Bedard’s/Washburn’s starts as well. Getting your 1-3 pitchers to catch every week while Johjima was stuck with the Jason Vargas’s of the world help explain alot of that difference. Plus CERA depends on a multitude of external factors (defense for one) which is does not take into account. I would be interested though if there was a stat like FIP or xFIP or tRA equivalent for CERA where we can adjust for defense, quality of starting pitcher, quality of opponent, park factor, etc. Make it happen fangraphs!

    Comment by ML — October 20, 2009 @ 2:15 pm

  10. good thing they traded clement. idiots. they deserve to lose for managing a team to get japanese media dollars

    Comment by MDS — October 21, 2009 @ 6:13 pm

  11. I don’t think Clement has the knees to catch anymore after all those surgeries on both knees and he was terrible defensively to begin with.

    I believe the Mariners will sign a cheap veteran to backup Adam Moore and send Rob Johnson back down to Tacoma or possibly trade him.

    Comment by FWB — October 21, 2009 @ 6:32 pm

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