With the recent trade by the Giants for Carlos Beltran (who I love so far), there have been a lot of terms being thrown around by the media that have me feeling like a baseball outsider again. So I’ve decided to do some research and decipher this stuff. I hate using Wikipedia as a source, but Internet info on these terms is scarce, so I succumbed. If anyone knows of a good general knowledge baseball site out there, please let me know.
When you trade for someone, in return someone has to go away because the team has a maximum of 40 guys they can have on their roster (referred to as the 40-man roster). With the Beltran trade, 2 things happened: Manny Burriss was optioned back to Triple-A Fresno and Bill Hall was activated from the 15-day disabled list and designated for assignment. Get that?? I don’t understand most of this, so I’m assuming a lot of you don’t either.
Let’s break it all down. Triple-A Fresno is a minor league farm team for the Giants. The team is actually called the Fresno Grizzlies. There are two other Giants farm teams: the Double-A Richmond Flying Squirrels (this is my new all-time favorite team name) and the Single-A San Jose Giants. Players are usually drafted by the Giants out of high school or college. They go to these minor league teams to improve their skills with the goal of eventually making it onto a major league team. Usually you work your way up from Single-A to Double-A to Triple-A, but if you are exceptionally good, you can skip levels or go directly to the majors. So Manny Burriss has gone back down to the minor leagues (I will miss his speed and beautiful eyes). This happens often – Brandon Belt has gone back and forth between the majors and minors a couple of times.
Bill Hall was activated from the 15-day disabled list. The disabled list is a list of players who are injured or ill and have been taken off of the 25-man roster (the subset of the 40-man roster who are active players) until they can recover and play again. This way a player can be added to the roster to replace them. I’ve come to learn that there is more than one disabled list. There are 15-day and a 60-day disabled lists depending on how severe the injury or illness is. So they took Bill Hall off the disabled list and designated him for assignment. What is this euphemism hiding? – sounds pretty ominous to me. If you are designated for assignment, you are immediately removed from the 40-man roster. This opens up the spot for the new player to come in. The team then has 10 days to decide what to do with the designated player. Within the 10 days, they can return him to the 40-man roster, place him on waivers (I’ll explain this further – gets pretty complicated fast when you have contracts and lawyers involved), trade him, or release him (meaning bye-bye Bill Hall).
What does being placed on waivers mean? Basically, if a player is waived, any other team can claim them. If more than one team claims them, the team with the worst record gets preference. However, the Giants still have options if Hall is claimed. They can arrange a trade for him, deny the request and keep him on the 40-man roster, or allow the claiming team to take him. There are lots of other legal details with trades that get very complicated very quickly, but at least you now have a basic understanding of things that can happen during a trade. Take home lesson – if you are a player and you are put on waivers, it’s not a happy thing. Sorry, Bill Hall.
No spit counts today as I haven’t had a chance to watch a game in a while. I’m hoping to do one on Sunday morning. I do have a comment from Dianna regarding the Brian Wilson shoe issue. She commented that Wilson probably got fined because he’s a pitcher and his shoes would be distracting to a batter. Any other position player might not have been fined wearing the same shoes. Valid point. Please keep the comments and questions coming. And GO GIANTS!!