Saturday August 22, 2009
Today San Diego Padres GM Kevin Towers declared David Eckstein "the heart and soul for us" and signed Eckstein to a one year extension for $1 million through the 2010 season.
I don't know how others feel about this signing, but for me it was essential to the growth of a very young team. Eckstein provides leadership both in his words and in his actions.
Eckstein is a student of the game who excels not because of his physical talent, because he is not a player with tremendous physical tools. Eckstein has been able to continue to start at the major league level because he is a tireless worker and student of the game. He does all the little things right.
That is what this team needs most right now.
I know not a very popular opinion in a lot of places right now, but another player that does all the little things right is Brian Giles. He plays hard every moment of every game and excels at getting on base.
Giles has had a bad year due to an injury sustained in April and the distraction of a lawsuit, and at 37 he may not be an everyday starter in this league anymore, but if he would agree to a $1-2 million salary to return to San Diego in 2010 it would be a great signing for the San Diego Padres.
A player that provides the example on the field he does, hits the .270-.280 a healthy Giles is capable of and plays good defense is worth much more, but perhaps Giles would take a contract like that to finish his career in San Diego and go out on his own terms instead of hobbled by an injury.
A young team led by a budding superstar in Adrian Gonzalez and two vets who play the game right could be a team that surprises alot of the league in 2010.