The Oakland Athletics claimed Jose Garcia off waivers from the Florida Marlins yesterday. This shocks me, because I had Jose Garcia as my sixth grade teacher thirty years ago, and that would make him what? At least 60, probably 70 years old or so? Not only that, he missed the entire 2007 season with Tommy John surgery.
Now don't get me wrong, I liked Mr. Garcia a lot; he was a good teacher. But Billy Beane's search for "undervalued" players has gone completely off the deep end. Sure, Mr. Garcia's previous minor-league numbers look good: 203 career strikeouts in 198 1/3 innings is excellent. But the A's suffered through all of 2007 with injury after injury, and now they add another injury-prone player to their roster? I know the prognosis for Tommy John surgery is usually quite good, but that's not a prognosis derived from a population of people who are eligible to collect Social Security checks. The Marlins must be completely flabbergasted that they were unable to sneak Mr. Garcia through waivers.
Admittedly, I haven't seen Mr. Garcia since I left Lincoln Elementary School back in 1978. Maybe he's in phenomenal shape. I'm skeptical, but I guess we'll find out in March. I look forward to seeing him again.