Remember Wade Boggs as a Devil Ray? Brett Favre as a Jet? Sylvester Stallone in the latest Rocky movie? Today, Trevor Hoffman signed with the Milwaukee Brewers and John Smoltz signed on with the Red Sox. Maybe Trevor Hoffman just wanted to follow in Salomon Torres’s footsteps and retire a Brewer. Meanwhile, Smoltz returns to Boston after only spending one year with the then Boston Braves. John Smoltz’s favorite contemporary artist, Mitzi Gaynor, once sang, “Everything old is new again.” No truer words have been spoken, except maybe, “Old pitchers break down.” — Anonymous. Anyway, here’s a look at what Hoffman and Smoltz will mean for 2009 fantasy baseball:
Trevor Hoffman – Somewhere in dairy country a little boy is asking his grandpa why he’s so excited. “Cause we’re going to be able to hear a whole lotta Hell’s Bells.” Carrying on the tradition he may have learned firsthand at The Spanish Inquisition, Hoffman did well converting opportunities in 2008. He went 30 for 34 in save chances and put up 3.77/1.04 ratios. Miraculously, he also posted more than a K/IP and only nine walks all season. Frankly, it was a better season than you deserved when you were all ready to drop his remembering-the-eighteen-eighties ass in April. The one big question mark besides his age is the home runs allowed. He gave up eight home runs in 45.1 IP with seven of those coming in Petco. Betcha he’s glad to be out of there! In the end, SAGNOF. If Hoffman’s getting the saves, then Hoffman is the one to own. I’d rank him at the bottom of the Donkey-corn tier of closers.
John Smoltz – Smoltz is on the DL until early June recovering from shoulder surgery. Sure, he’s The Ultimate Warrior taking on evil Hulk, but let’s be real for a moment. Doode’s about to be 42 years-old. The Sox gave him a five million dollar deal. This is the same as you leaving a 12% tip at your local Ham ‘N Eggery. Not to mention, the Red Sox have about a seven man starting staff as of right now. (BTW, this really shows the inequality between clubs. The Sox have a number seven man (Buchholz) that could be a number three man on another club. Meanwhile, the Nats big offseason acquistion was Daniel Cabrera.) If you have room on your DL for Smoltz, take a flier in the end rounds, but don’t expect too much. The Sox are stacked to the point where they could hold Smoltz back until the All-Star Break and then baby him just for the playoffs. I’d put his 2009 projections at 5-2/3.00/1.16 in 12 starts.