Tom Verducci's Mailbag

June 27, 2004

Why wasn't there a feeding frenzy for Vladimir Guerrero in the
off-season? Surely big-market teams loaded with aging vets--like
the Giants, Mets and Yankees--are kicking themselves for not
signing him.

Chung Tron, Silicon Valley, Calif.

VERDUCCI: There's nothing like a back injury to scare off teams,
and that's what happened to Vlady. Even though Guerrero came back
from the injury and played well late last season, teams still had
doubts. He would have been just what the Mets needed, but fresh
off the Mo Vaughn disaster, they were gun-shy. The Giants didn't
have the money, the Yanks' George Steinbrenner had his heart set
on Gary Sheffield, and the Orioles tried to get Guerrero, but he
didn't want them. There's no doubt that the Angels got themselves
a true franchise hitter.

To read the entire Mailbag, go to si.com/baseball.

COLOR PHOTO: ROB TRINGALI/SPORTSCHROME (GUERRERO) COLOR PHOTO

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