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The Marlins give Wes Helms a one-year extension

Aug 19, 2010, 9:12 AM EDT

There goes all of that crazy Wes Helms speculation I was looking forward to at this year’s Winter Meetings:

The Florida Marlins have signed third baseman Wes Helms to a $1 million, one-year contract extension through the 2011 season. The
Marlins generally don’t sign players to extensions during the season,
but have been talking to Helms for several weeks about returning. Helms
is hitting .225 with four homers and 22 RBIs in 178 at-bats in 91 games.

Wes Helms had 278 glorious plate appearances for the 2006 Marlins and has been one of the worst hitting third basemen in all of baseball since then.  Yes, I realize he’s a backup, but there’s nothing that says your backup can’t hit a little. At this point I can only assume that his continued tenure with the Marlins is based on him being the nicest, most wonderful guy you’d ever want in a clubhouse. Or else the Florida brass thinks that the past four seasons are the exception and 2006 the rule.

According to the AP story, Helms is expected to become a coach or a manager after he’s done.  I wonder if the Marlins realize that they can hire him in that capacity even if they don’ give him 250 trips to plate next year.

  1. BC - Aug 19, 2010 at 9:58 AM

    OK, this one sent me diving for the Nardil…..
    Why on earth…..????
    Unless (shamelessly borrowing a term from Old Gator) Scrooge McLoria thinks he can save money by having Helms be player-manager next year.
    Where’s that $@#!!%#$! Nardil???!?!?!

  2. Old Gator - Aug 19, 2010 at 11:16 AM

    Well, this certainly makes sense of Scrooge’s logic in cutting Lenny Harris in 2006 after Harris hit .314 in 70 ABs in 2005, doesn’t it? Of course, Harris was mostly used as a pinch hitter and lacked Kindly Uncle Wes’ “versatility,” his uncanny ability to play mediocre defense at first or second.
    Auschlanders to Macondo may have difficulty understanding the point to this extension. Kindly Uncle Wes is a “clubhouse presence,” a shadow ministry unto himself. He has endeared himself assiduously to Scrooge McLoria, the Chihuahua and Larry Bienfest. He’s a bridgebuilder, a consensus-maker, a benign Squeak to the Chihuahua’s Claggart. He has the “trust and confidence” of all the “younger guys” in the clubhouse, the “glue” (although that’s what happened to Barbaro) that knits this K-Mart payroll together, and it is entirely possible that Scrooge and the Poochito fear that if he leaves, the kids will tire of the front office in short order and drift away to a life of selling shoes at the Payless outlets scattered among the malls of southwestern Macondo.
    Aside from that, it’s an olive branch to the MLBPA – see, we offer extensions to our veteran players and you didn’t even have to shoot at our feet to get us to do it, especially now that the union is preoccupied with defending a thug who beat up an elderly man.
    Of course, it’s also entirely possible Scrooge fears that unless he pays Kindly Uncle Wes a million, he’ll wind up paying someone else a million one.

  3. BC - Aug 19, 2010 at 11:32 AM

    So basically you’re saying Helms is a mole for Scrooge McLoria?

  4. Old Gator - Aug 19, 2010 at 11:53 AM

    I never say anything “basically.” You know that. The implication is that he’s sending coded messages back to Little Herr Friedemann via bottles up the Gulf Stream.

  5. APBA Guy - Aug 19, 2010 at 12:26 PM

    This decade’s Jeff Conine?

  6. BC - Aug 19, 2010 at 12:47 PM

    Or Ed Kranepool, depending on how you look at it.

  7. Old Gator - Aug 19, 2010 at 2:58 PM

    No match. Niner contributed, and is a noted philanthropist. His return to the team in ’03 was a critical part of winning the championship – not least of which, his inspired peg from mid left field to nail JT Snow at the plate to clinch the NLCS. Niner and Wes have about as much in common as Wolverine and PeeWee Herman.
    And Niner has a bobblehead.

  8. magzalez - Aug 19, 2010 at 3:51 PM

    One of my biggest fears as a Marlins fan is that this old man who insists on people playing baseball the “right way” will end up our manager. Also, ya know, the Marlins getting retracted.

  9. Old Gator - Aug 19, 2010 at 6:52 PM

    Not to worry. After barfing up a couple hundred million for that monstrosity going up just off the Dolphin, they ain’t contracting the Feesh. That’s the good news.
    The bad news is that Scrooge McLoria will continue to own them.

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