How Soon is Ned? 

The Dodgers are interested in Giants assistant GM Ned Colletti. They will interview him for the open general manager position soon. But when, Ned, when?

"It's soon," Colletti said.

That would be quite a defection. You have to wonder how much of the company secrets Colletti would take with him. For example, only Ned knows that when Brian Sabean's right eyelid twitches as he offers you Ryan Vogelsong, don't accept. Or, if you can't see him face-to-face, listen for the slight stutter: "Omar? Brian. Listen, Fonzie really wants to come back to New York, and he's comp-p-pletely healthy. Twenty p-p-pounds lighter."

Colletti would be wise to keep a list of these "tells" on the back of his cell phone.

There's also an argument to be made that Colletti would take a lot of his own secrets with him, and perhaps good riddance. He's been the Giants' main contract negotiator for years, and as discussed in the comments of this post, Ned worries about being crushed by statistics. He has dreams of giant numbers falling on his unprotected head. It's a little known fact that Ned is lobbying Congress to fund the Statistics Defense Shield Initiative to prevent the nefarious regimes of Beanegola and Prospectustan, not to mention the evil midget dictator of North Boras, from bombarding the faith-based citizenry with numbers of mass deduction.

To date, these terrifying formulations have not penetrated the Mays Field homeland, but one can never be too vigilant.

Another question is, would Colletti in L.A. and Sabean in S.F. be more amenable to trades between the two organizations? Historically, Dodger-Giant swaps have been as rare as Sammy Hagar driving the speed limit past Kettleman City or vegetarians signing up for the Harris Ranch Olfactory Immersion Weekend Package and Spa Kit.*

Do former colleagues inevitably like to trade with each other? Would Ned and Sabes instantly become bitter rivals? I don't have time to look it up at the moment, but it seems to me trades between the A's and Jays have been more frequent since J.P. Ricciardi took over in Toronto.

Final question: if Colletti defects, do the Giants get compensation, a la Lou Piniella going to Tampa and Randy Winn to Seattle? And if so, would Colletti handle the trade negotiations?

* More Central Valley analogies welcome in the comment box. Winner will be named in my will as inheritor of my commemorative Pac Bell Park replica model (not life size).


Small print update:

For those who care, I ripped through Krakauer's Into Thin Air in 48 hours. Never read it before, believe it or not. At his best, Krakauer makes you feel the altitude sickness, the 60-knot winds, the minus-100 F wind chill, the migraines and retching and hypoxia and brain swelling and unbearable fatigue to the point where you ask, Why are these people climbing Mt. Everest? "Because it is there" doesn't seem like such a noble answer anymore.

I recently bought my very first iPod, and it's given me the chance to listen to some old favorites in new contexts: up close through headphones, in the open spaces of gym workouts, with the backdrop of city streets as I walk or take busses here and there. I've had a great time revisiting Komeda's Pop På Svenska. It's like a rebus or easter egg hunt, there are so many fun musical bits (typewriter keys, bird squawks) hidden amongst the band's artsy pop gems. I have no idea what singer Lena Karlsson is saying (except for the first track -- "Oy Vilket Liv!" apparently means, "Wow, what a sound!") but Swedish never sounded so sexy. In the review I linked to at right, the reviewer pretty much nails what's great about the album and the band.


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