The old friend alert here for Zack Greinke appearing on the list should come as a surprise to absolutely no one who follows this game.
They have one of the worst farms in all of baseball, but they also are one of the only teams in the entire sport who could conceivably absorb 100% of Arenado’s remaining contract and not have it torpedo them.
Doing the right thing has been a long time coming. Despite Rob Manfred’s tone-deaf approach, something good is still finally coming out of all of this. Now, how is it handled?
If you want to play the “He was a Hall of Famer before he touched the stuff” game, consider only what Bonds did through 1998: His 411 homers, 1,917 hits, 445 steals and .290/.411/.556 line were good for 99.9 career WAR (which would rank third among left fielders), 62.6 peak WAR (second), and 81.3 JAWS (third behind Williams and Rickey Henderson). That’s still a Hall of Famer.
2020 saw a number of top prospects brought up to get their licks in during the pandemic season. The Angels’ promotion of Jo Adell did not go well - at all. Now, Joe Maddon is ready to see Adell return to the minors in order to make the adjustments he needs to be MLB-ready.
Rampant rule changes for the sake of changing rules, player protests, ill-advised pandemic play, punishing-but-not-punishing cheaters, a barely legitimate championship marred by more controversy and poor player behaviour on and off the field, these things, along with the continued open fighting between ownership and the MLBPA have put MLB into something of an identity crisis.