Friday, July 16, 2010

Seals purchase of RBI man a sign of playoff run

Last year the Seals were trading away talent as the playoffs approached. 2010 is proving to be a different story as the Victoria squad has just purchased the contract of clutch-hitting Tim Rodriguez from the Yuma Scorpions. The move is another sign that the Seals are getting set to make a playoff run.

Right before the All-Star break, the Seals re-acquired the ace of their pitching staff, Isaac Hess, from the Mexican League. The purchase of Rodriguez gives them a much-needed third quality outfielder and helps ensure that they have enough offence to take a serious run at their first division title. Rodriguez is currently second in the GBL with 51 RBIs and he's hitting .349 going into play on Friday.

The move helps the Seals keep pace with the other clubs who will be in the race for the second playoff spot in the North Division (Chico won the first-half title). During the All-Star break, the Edmonton Capitals purchased the contract of pitcher Daryl Arreola (7-1, 2.59 ERA) from Yuma, who appear to be conducting an early fire sale. Arreola, who is the brother of Seals pitcher Andrew Arreola, leads the GBL in wins with seven.

The Yuma franchise appears to be falling apart at the seams. In addition to selling Arreola and Rodriguez, they also sold third baseman Santo DeLeon to the Chico Outlaws. According to the Edmonton Journal, Yuma team president Ricky Smith has not paid any of the Scorpions since early June. All of this comes on the heels of rumours last month that the Scorpions might move (or at least shift some games) to Mexicali, Mexico. According to the GBL, Yuma is only averaging 1,109 fans per game and this figure has worsened as the season has progressed. It will be interesting to see how this plays out over the remainder of the year.

Although I don't like to see a team dumping players this early in the season, I have to give credit to the teams involved and the GBL office for their transparency in announcing the moves. Last season, there were a number of situations that were announced as a "trade for future considerations". In many cases, the future considerations never materialized and fans were left to try and piece together what really happened. Kudos to all involved for being up-front with the situation this year.