Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Astros sign Erik Bedard

I have known about the signing of Erik Bedard for approximately 12 hours, but I cannot think of an opinion about it.

Bedard will be 34 in March. He throws the ball with his left hand. He is Canadian. He was good. In 2006, he went 15-11 with a 3.76 ERA/1.35 WHIP for Baltimore, with 7.8 K/9. Then in 2007, he was better, going 13-5 with a 3.16 ERA/1.09 WHIP, his K/9 jumping to an AL-leading 10.9, and his 7.0 H/9 also led the American League. Bedard finished 5th in the Cy Young voting.

Then in February 2008, Bedard was traded to Seattle for Adam Jones, George Sherrill, Chris Tillman, and two other players. That trade did not work out for the Mariners. In parts of three injury-plagued seasons with Seattle he made just 46 starts and was traded in a big, complicated, multi-player three team trade to Boston, where he made eight starts, going 1-2 with a 4.03 ERA/1.55 WHIP.

Then he signed with Pittsburgh for 2012, and made 24 ineffective starts, going 7-14 with a career-worst 5.01 ERA to go along with a 1.47 WHIP, and was released on August 28. He still managed a 1.3 WAR (according to FanGraphs).

So with the news that the Astros signed him to a minor-league deal with an invitation to Spring Training, it's the very definition of low-cost/high-reward. Any reward at all will be high. He'll compete for a spot in the rotation, and Jeff Luhnow says he has a good chance to make the rotation.

That's fine, I guess. It gives the younger guys more time in the minors, and would bring a guy who has spent eight years of his Major-League career in the American League a chance to help the team. I still have no opinions. Could be fine. Might not. But, and this isn't an indictment of Luhnow/Front Office, this is precisely the move that we would have hammered Ed Wade over.