Rumor has it that the Washington Nationals are close to signing Sammy Sosa, possibly to a “non-guaranteed minor-league deal and giving him an opportunity to make the team,” according to Nationals general manager Jim Bowden. No offense, kids, but this deal doesn’t make sense for anyone.
First of all, from the Nationals’ point of view, what do they expect to get out of him? Sosa has demonstrated over the past couple years that his power has diminished remarkably — coincidentally, the decline started at the same time that MLB started testing for steroids, but nevermind that now. So the Nationals, who play in THE WORST hitters park in baseball, want to bring in a guy who is losing his power and has absolutely no redeeming qualities other than his power? Not to mention the fact that the Nats already have Ryan Church, Jose Guillen, Michael Tucker, and possibly Alfonso Soriano in the outfield. Yeah, seems like a smart move, Mr. Bowden. Why did the Reds fire you, again?
And from Sosa’s point of view, this is a terrible idea. Sosa says in that article that I linked to that he wants to get to 660 career homers, or maybe even 700. Newsflash, Sammy: you hit 14 homers last year. At that rate, it will take you more than five more years to get to 660, and three more after that to get to 700. Do you really think going to RFK Stadium is going to benefit you in that goal? And do you really think that a team is going to employ a 14-homer guy with no defensive, offensive, or clubhouse skills for five or eight years? Did I mention that you will be 42 years old in five years?
Oh, and one more thing: the people in the D.C. area already aren’t real fond of you. Remember, you got paid $17 million to hit 14 homers for the Orioles last year…
Look, Sammy. If you quit now, people can forget the last year or two, and maybe it will never be proven that you used steroids, and you will go into the Hall of Fame based on seven great seasons. Your best days are behind you, and only sadness looms ahead.