The winter meetings are finally underway this week in Nashville.  Since we have no baseball to watch during the offseason, we get excited about things like the winter meetings.  OMG PEOPLE WILL TALK ABOUT BASEBALL THIS WEEK pretty much sums up my thoughts on the matter.  If you’re a fan of a team that likes to spend money, it can be a very exciting time.  If not, you mostly just sit around hoping that you’re team doesn’t completely screw everything up and make you want to cry (for me, this would be the trading of Carlos Santana).

Last spring, I decided to make a game of spring training bingo.  I got so sick of hearing the same catch phrases and predictable statements; I figured I might as well make a game out of it.  The winter meetings seemed ripe for this kind of joke, so here we are.

Like with the spring game, you can set your card up with five squares across and five down, with a free space in the middle.  That means you need 24 things to fill in the rest of your card.  Maybe at some point this week one of us at IPL will even help you fill in your card?  I know I was guilty of some of the spring ones after I created the bingo card.

My suggestions:

1. Puff piece on Nashville and country music.

2. Something about the “risk” connected to Josh Hamilton.

3. The Marlins trade the rest of their 25-man roster.

4. “Francona is working the phones trying to charm players into coming to Cleveland.”

5. Jokes about offseason golf.

6. Talk about the Hall of Fame ballot and PEDs.

7. Someone talking for the 4,000th time about how Shin-Soo Choo is represented by Scott Boras and that he won’t be in Cleveland after 2013.

8. Mention of the elusive “mystery team.”

9. “There is a lot of interest in Grady Sizemore” – Sizemore’s agent.

10. “This deal is close right now.”

11. “Right now, the sides are pretty far apart.”

12. Discussion of the combined staff ERA of Indians starters last season.

13. Something about Chris Perez and the controversy surrounding him during the 2012 season.

14. References to how the Indians are excited about their young core of players.

15. Talk about the Yankees wanting to keep their payroll below $189 million.

16. Something from Antonetti and/or Shapiro about how the Indians have to try and do more on a smaller budget.

17. The Indians need a first baseman, an outfielder, and starting pitching. (You could probably cheat and find about five references to this from me alone in the last week or two).

18. The Dodgers sign a free agent for a seemingly bloated contract.  (You could probably have an entire card with just this written in the spaces, and you probably would still hit bingo before the end of the week).

19. Tampa Bay is looking to deal pitching for offense.

20. Scott Boras convinces Mike Ilitch, owner of the Tigers, to sign Rafael Soriano.  This is despite the fact that GM Dave Dombrowski already said that he wants to give prospect Bruce Rondon a chance to close with the departure of Jose Valverde.

21. Attempt to rationalize what appears to be an absolutely dreadful free agent signing.  (Think mediocre/poor player signed to terrible, bloated contract).

22. Mention of people (GMs or reporters) walking around constantly on the phone talking or texting people.

23. Any Zach Greinke rumor that does not involve the Rangers, Angels, Dodgers, or Nationals. (I’m making this a tough one!)

24. The Indians sign someone for longer than a one-year deal.

So there you have it, my suggestions for a winter meetings bingo card.  Feel free to add some of your own in the comments, and have fun playing!

As a completely random bit of crazy info – one of the Rally Cows came from the Apple Barn at Opry Mills Mall, adjacent to the Opryland Hotel in Nashville.



  • Steve Alex says:

    You forgot, “Chris Antonetti saying that the Indians are ‘heavily engaged’ in discussions” with a team or player.

  • Stephanie Liscio says:

    Oh heck yes! And if they don’t do anything, they’ll say stuff about “having laid the groundwork.”

  • Bob Sproule says:

    Here’s one for us Pirates fans: Neal Huntington waxes rhapsodic over the “years of control” the team will have over whatever warm body he either trades for or signs as a free agent.

  • joey says:

    funny stuff! i have a question for u girls/guys… do u think STO is gonna be sold cuz the Dolans know there gonna blow things up…(trade everybody) and have bad ratings for the next few years…cuz if thats the case…they wont be able to get advertising/commercial money…right? thats what im thinking…btw i had a dream…that josh hamilton hit a homerun to win the world series for the tribe!

  • Chris Burnham says:

    I think it’s sad that we’ve reached the point where Antonetti doesn’t have to be present for team-related functions. Just find a Jon Hamm mannequin and play a tape.

    As for STO, Joey, Steph covered that situation:

  • Drew says:

    While I have very little faith in the Front office pulling off the said deals, adding Shane Victorino and Kevin Youklis would go a long way toward filling seats with butts at Progressive Field. I think everyone has resigned to the belief the Cabrerra is gone and Choo is likely gone – because of his “rental” status, the Indians may just hold onto him and take the compensatory draft pick when he leaves at the end of the year. I think this could result in enough of an upgrade on OF that the Indians win more games in 2013 than they did in 2012.

  • Stephanie Liscio says:

    Bob, you could also add something with the Pirates and military drills!

    Joey, I wouldn’t necessarily rule anything out. However, in my own personal opinion (with no solid evidence to fully support this) I think it’s a case of striking while the iron is hot. Fox is reportedly trying to buy up as much as they can in terms of local networks/broadcasts when it comes to MLB games. With the bloated media deals teams are getting, it may have been a case of trying to get as much money as possible before the media bubble bursts. Plus STO is coming off some record-high ratings in 2011, which probably made them look even better. They’re likely to drag from this point forward, so get what you can, while you can.

    Drew, I started to wonder if the big push for Victorino was more for image – like “look, we finally landed a free agent someone else wanted!” I’ve also heard that the Denard Span trade may really hurt Choo’s value. Just because he still has 3 years of control left, and all Minnesota got was a Class A pitcher. True, it was a pretty good pitcher, but that’s for a good outfielder with 3 years left. The Indians would probably get much less than that.

    • Drew says:

      In that case, keep Choo. The Indians will be “able” (if only we could be assured that they were capable) to draft a pretty good Class A pitcher out of it next spring. The Indians are kicking the tires on Mark Reynolds as well as Youk. Between the two, I’d rather have Youk. Except for #s of HR/162 games and age, Youk is superior in all metrics. I think Reynolds has peaked and his talent over the next 2-3 years is what you saw in the last 2-3 years. That is guy who bats .220 hits 30 HR, plays marginal defense, and strikes out 200 times! Youk will likely hit around .245-.250, hit 20 HRs, has 2 Gold gloves in his past, and strikes-out 125 times in the same time period. It will take more $ to sign him, but hopefully the Ohio-native and Terry Francona connection will seal the deal.

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