Ruben, Jon, and Cole, v.2.

Ring tone sounds (“Out of Touch” by Philadelphia’s own Hall & Oates).  Ruben picks up his phone.

“Yo.  You got R.A.J., bay-bee.  Who dis?”  

“Seriously, Ruben.” 

“Jon!  Man.  Six straight, huh?  Six!”    

“Whatcha got, Ruben?” 

“Our manager stepped down yesterday, Jon.”    

“I know.” 

“Who should I hire?” 

“Is that your call?” 

“Oh.  Hmm.”  

[Thad Levine flips on Neftali Feliz’s walk-in music.]

“Dude.  What’s that?” 

“What’s what?”  

“I dunno.  I thought I heard Neftali Feliz’s walk-in music.  Remember when he struck out A-Rod, Jon?  That was awesome!”    

[twirls fake moustache] “Yes it was, Ruben.  Yes it was.”  

“You mentioned Nef the other day and I checked — did you know he’s perfect in his career in Philadelphia?” 

[begins growing real moustache and twirling it] “Didn’t realize that, Ruben.”  

“Hey boss — what does ‘small sample size’ mean?”  

“Ruben, I’m kinda busy.  Whatcha got?”  

“Tuesday is Cole’s day to pitch.”   

“Cool.  Good luck to him.” 

“He could pitch for you against Baltimore instead.  Cole hasn’t done real well against the Orioles in his career, but hey, neither has Cliff Lee, and remember that brutal debut he made for you in 2010 — against the Orioles — and how you went to the World Series three months later?  It lines up, dude!  Gimme Chi Chi and Nomar and a lot more, Jon!” 

“Not happening, Ruben.  This is nothing like 2010.” 

“But!” 

“Not happening.”  

“Man, Jon.  That trade was awesome!  All you had to give up was Smoak and Beavan and Lueke and Lawson!” 

“Ruben, a few months before that you traded Cliff to Seattle and all you got was Phillippe Aumont, J.C. Ramirez, and Tyson Gillies.”   

[Silence.]

[Silence.

“Anyway, give me a lot for Cole!  I don’t have many players who are good at baseball.”  

“Ruben, think back to the Royals team last year.  Their World Series club.” 

“Yeah, yeah.  I think I watched some of that.” 

“In 2010 the Royals traded Zack Greinke and Yuniesky Betancourt to the Brewers — ”  

“Yuni.  I’d like to sign that guy.  I think he and I were teammates back in the day.  Maybe not.”    

“Anyway, for Greinke and Betancourt they got Alcides Escobar, Lorenzo Cain, Jake Odorizzi, and Jeremy Jeffress.”   

“Wow.  That’s awesome.”  

“They later flipped Odorizzi in a deal that got them James Shields and Wade Davis.”  

“Is that good?”  

“Ruben, you know where those guys were ranked in the Milwaukee system going into that 2010 season?” 

“No.  Want me to go find out?  I can call you right back.”  

“Alcides was No. 1.  Lorenzo was 8.  Jake was 9.  Jeremy was 21.  And Milwaukee had a middle-of-the-pack system.”  [Jon skips the part about Jake and Jeremy breaking out in 2010.]

“Jon, man, can we get back to talking about baseball?” 

“Ruben, you can make a smart deal and get your team back on track without Chi Chi and Nomar.”   

“Dude, you said Alcides was the Brewers’ number one prospect!” 

“Everyone in baseball had Neftali ranked ahead of him.”  [Thad twirls Jon’s aggressively sprouting moustache.]

“Hmm.  Interesting!” 

“Ruben, I get it if you’re using us to try to leverage other teams to give you what you and Pat and Andy are going to want for Cole.  I get that.  And on one level I don’t mind it.  But if you’re serious about us you’re going to have to back up a little.”  

“Jon, do you know who Pat Gillick is?” 

“Yes, Ruben.  I know who Pat Gillick is.  I just mentioned him to you.”  

“He has a friend — I think his name is Don — who I think might have worked for you.”  

“Ruben, he worked for you guys, too.” 

[Silence. 

[Silence.

[Silence.]

“Ruben, you there?”  

“So I think maybe Pat is asking Don who I should ask you for.  I’m not sure I’m supposed to tell you that.” 

“Don’t you think he might tell Pat to ask for more than we’d ever give up because Don’s team wants Cole, too?” 

“Don’s team?” 

“San Diego, Ruben.  Where Cole is from.”   

“Oh cool.” 

“Ruben, should I offer Leonys Martin and something to Doug for Carlos Gomez?” 

“Man, I don’t know where you’re getting your intel, but I don’t work for the Brewers.”   

“Never mind.” 

“Why do you want Gomez anyway?  You’ve got Gallo starting in center field today.” 

“Ruben, that’s not long term.”   

“Hear ya, man.  I don’t even like thinking long term.” 

“Tuck this name away, Ruben, because you and I are going to talk about him soon: Jake Diekman.” 

“OK.  I’ll look him up.” 

“See ya, Ruben.” 

“Jon, man, are you gonna play the X?  Cole Hamels, man!”    

“Talk to you later, Ruben.” 

 
title_authors

Jamey Newberg

Dallas attorney Jamey Newberg has been commenting on Rangers from the big club down through the entire farm system since 1998.

Scott Lucas

Scott Lucas was born in Arlington, Texas, to Richard and Becky Lucas. He lived mostly in Arlington before moving to Austin, where he graduated from The University of Texas. Scott works for Austin Valuation Consultants, Ltd., and has published several boring articles about real estate appraisal and environmental contamination. He makes a swell margarita and refuses to run longer than ten kilometres.

Eleanor Czajka

Eleanor grew up watching the AAA Mudhens in Toledo, Ohio. A loyal Ranger fan since 1979, she works "behind the scenes" at the Newberg Report.

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