I just looked at this guys stats for a few minutes, and I want him. Look here.
First, he's a free agent. He won't cost us another pitcher. He may cost a lot of dough, but I'll set that question aside. The market is doing its thing.
One thing to like: .373 career OBP. Like Casey, he has Mark Grace-looking career numbers. Another thing to like: he hits righties. .302 / .378 / .451 last year. .315 / .394 / .490 2002 to 2004.
Thing is, we have this other guy who plays third who hits lefties pretty well.
Mueller, like Casey, is probably not going to manage 650 PAs in 2006. We need at least 650 PAs at each of the positions, maybe 700 at first base. Casey has averaged about 625 per year recently. Eldred or Wilson could easily make up the rest. If we sign Mueller, who has been more of a 450-550 PA guy, we know some of those lost at-bats could be thrown profitably to Freddy Sanchez. If he's a little gimpy and we are facing Eric Milton, he sits and Sanchez plays.
The thing I really want is a Manny Christmas. Like that will happen. The big knock on Mueller, for me, is not the low slugging percentage. It's not good but the high OBP makes up for much of what it lacks. The knock on Mueller is the possibility - looks strong considering his career numbers - that he manages only 450 PA while hobbling around with some kind of nagging injury. But we have Sanchez and we could mandate rest for a guy with such a gimpy track record. Tracy could keep him fresh and find time for Sanchez.
The more I think on it, the more I want him.
And unlike Bones, I like the Hernandez signing. Glad to have another Token Geezer on the staff. My first choice was Julio Franco, but Roberto will do.