Thursday, July 28, 2011

Fukudome - A name with many pronounciations

Fukudome.  It's an interesting name.  Depending on how you pronounce it you get an entirely different meaning.

For example, if you hyphenate that name after the first three letters, after the fourth letter, and pronounce the last part  ("dome") as "dummy", you get what some angry Indians' fans are saying to Antonetti and Shapiro about the Indians' acquisition today.

If you break it up like Fu-kudo-me, you may be getting what Antonetti is saying about himself tonight.  Or, after reading the angry fans' comments F-u-kudo-me.

 For me, no matter how you pronounce it, this is an OK trade.  I don't think it hurts our farm system that much and it might help our major league team. 

However, I have an obligation to point out that whenever you bring a former Cub into a team in a pennant race you are playing Russian roulette.  Former Cubs do not, historically, give you an advantage in a pennant race and, many times, become an albatross or anchor around your neck, depending on your metaphoric state.   However,  my thinking is, given the Cubs season, our new Indian may not have been playing with the zest he may in a pennant race and his recent hitting may be a sign to his new employer that they can expect more out of him than his current stats would sugges.  Let's hope so.

As far as the guys we gave up, Abner Abreu had an abysmal season that was mitigated only by an incredible July.  That being said, we traded this guy at close to his top value, at least in the last two years.  Carlton Smith had a mediocre yet progressing career in which he kept moving up the ladder and, with experience, kept getting better once he got to a level.  He has some upside and may yet see the majors this year if he performs well after the trade.  Guys traded for major leaguers tend to do that if, for no other reason, than to justify the trade.

In other words, we didn't dent our farm system with this trade.  Yes, Abreu reminded me somewhat in his healthy Lake County year of a healthy Vlad Guerrero but he didn't have either the plate discipline nor health to be a top prospect anymore.  For me, he was the kind of guy who you trade for if you are the Cubs.  A guy that makes a trade like this something that you can't analyze for 3 years, about the time people have forgotten about it.  Smith gives you a guy you give a major league shot to this season to say 'see, we ARE getting a return for a rent-a-player'. 

This is a trade you make if you are the Indians and the kind of trade you make if you are the Cubs and find there is little or no market for Fukudome, correctly pronounced Fook-ah-dough-may. 

Let's hope it works out for both teams.  It certainly didn't hurt either of them.

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