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The Essence Of Leadership

Kirby Arnold fans the flames of justifiable contempt:

SEATTLE -- Reports of the pounds Carlos Silva put on this year might not have been as exaggerated as his weight itself.
The Mariners won't say what the man nicknamed "Buffalo" weighed at the end of the season, although it clearly wasn't a four-pound difference. It was more like 30.

The Mariners are taking special steps this winter to make sure he isn't super-sized again.

It's funny to read over the Silva press conference article from last December and see how completely wrong everybody was. Maybe not so much ha-ha funny as hey-that-blood-spatter-on-the-wall-from-my-chest-kind-of-looks-like-Jerry Lewis funny. There are different kinds of funny.

The Mariners signed Carlos Silva for four main reasons:

1) to add a league-average arm to the rotation
2) to add an innings eater to the rotation
3) to add a veteran leader to the clubhouse
4) to be a good mentor for Felix

What they got in return:

1) the 16th-worst tRA and the 19th-worst tRA* of 130 qualified starters
2) 153.1 innings, a DL stint, constant back problems, and a 5.5 IP/start ratio that was below the AL average of 5.9
3) threats to throw teammates into walls and a stubborn reluctance to acknowledge his own shortcomings
4) substantial in-season weight gain from a guy who called out others for not showing enough commitment or drive to win

Carlos Silva didn't do a single thing right in 2008. Not a single thing. Remember how during the 06/07 offseason, a huge deal was made over how Felix had worked out really hard and lost so much weight? The big guy the organization brought in as a role model for their blossoming ace just gained 30 more pounds in six months. While playing games.

I'm not going to say this team would be better off were Silva to be rendered paraplegic in a traffic accident. But it wouldn't not be better off.