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In terms of baseball economics, trading Jim Johnson makes sense for Orioles
In terms of baseball economics, trading Jim Johnson makes sense for Orioles

It's understandably hard for Orioles fans to look past Jim Johnson's consecutive 50-save seasons, especially given that the club received an uninspiring infielder Monday night in exchange for its closer. But this trade had little to do with the relative strengths of Johnson and second baseman Jemile Weeks. Instead, it was a commentary on our evolving understanding of the value of closers. Simply put, there are many more pitchers capable of closing effectively than there are closer jobs. Short relievers, even good ones such as Johnson, aren’t a premium product in the major leagues. So it becomes unpalatable for a mid-market team — and the Orioles definitely behave as...

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