Purgatory Online

Wednesday, September 29, 2004

Troy Percival, on being ready to pitch for a fourth consecutive day:
"I told him I'm fine," Percival said before the game. "If it's a one-run game, and he needs [Brendan] Donnelly and Frankie [Rodriguez] in the seventh and eighth inning, throw me out there. I've got nothing to save for. I can drive my boat left-handed."

I dunno...I sure don't want to see the Angels locked into paying huge dollars for Percival for the next several years, and I think Rodriguez is clearly the future closer. And, of course, Percival wants nothing to do with being a set-up man. But the way he's pitched the second half of this season is going to make Stoneman's decision pretty damn tough. Probably the best-case scenario in terms of re-signing him would be to get Percival to agree to a two-year deal with a mutual option for a third, at something significantly less per year than the eight million he's getting now (say, $3-4 million per year), or a one-year renewal for $5 million or so. I doubt that either of those would tempt Percival into foregoing free agency, especially now that he's looking like he might be developing along the lines of a Nolan Ryan-type career path, but you never know.

I'll tell you one thing - the other night, as the Angels warmed up on the field, the Rangers' video board was showing an episode of "This Week in Baseball" that included a long feature on Percival. The entire pitching staff, and a lot of the position players, quit what they were doing and just stood there on the field in their warm-ups, their heads tilted back, watching.

But, you know, "makeup" and "leadership" don't really mean anything. Anybody can be a closer! The smartest minds in the game all say so!

Schya. And I'm a Chinese jet pilot.