Jon Morosi of Fox Sports is one of the most prolific rumormongers on the scene. He also has hilariously serious tweets! But let's focus on the rumors. Right now, he's reporting the Giants have interest in right-hander Jason Hammel.
The responses Morosi got were a mix of "NO NO" and "OH NO NO GOD NO." Probably because Hammel has a career 4.80 ERA and a 49-59 record.
But if I were to invent an award called The Super Sleeper of the Offseason it would be ... wait, back up. If I were to invent that award, I'd need a trophy shaped like this:
And this year I'd give it to Jason Hammel. He might get two years. He might get, oh, $15 million, which seems a lot for someone with his ugly career numbers. But consider ...
1. He's pitched in Coors Field and Camden Yards for his career, skewing his numbers. His career ERA+ is 94 -- just about dead average for a starter, and even that total is skewed by his Kickham-like introduction to the majors. Since moving to the Rockies, his ERA+ is an even 100.
2. His biggest problem last year was with dingers, probably because Camden is one of the most dinger-happy places in baseball. He's a fly-ball pitcher, and AT&T would fit him well.
3. He throws hard. Really hard. Dunno, just want one of those guys in the rotation.
4. I think he's better than he showed last year, and by a substantial amount. He totally hosed himself with his injury-riddled, unfortunate season. He's the anti-Ervin or anti-Ubaldo. I would legitimately give all three of those pitchers nearly equal odds of 2014 success as a Giant, but Hammel will be roughly three billion dollars and one draft pick less.
5. I choose to believe the strikeout numbers from his good season because it's my prerogative, and now that's stuck in your head.
My dream offseason might include Hammel, actually. If Masahiro Tanaka is the other starter coming over, of course. But even without the fancypants complement, I'm still on board with Hammel. He's been my ...
... Super Sleeper of the Offseason all along.