J.T. Snow has retired and will be taking a front office job with the Giants. Snow played for 15 seasons in the majors, and wasn't at all a bad player. He wasn't quite Wally Joyner, but he wasn't Rico Brogna either.
Snow was drafted by the Yankees in the fifth round of the 1989 draft, and made his major league debut after the roster expansion in 1992. He was traded (with Jerry Nielsen and Russ Springer) to the California Angels that offseason, in exchange for Jim Abbott.
I was 10, 11 years old at the time Snow got his first crack at the majors in '93, and he was a total Rated Rookie type of cat. Everyone wanted those damn J.T. Snow and Tino Martinez cards. Those were gonna be THE GUYS at first base.
Turns out Snow was a league average hitter for the most part, sometimes below, rarely above, and a good defensive first baseman that won six consecutive Gold Gloves. He had his best year in his first season with the Giants, hitting .281/.387/.510 with 28 homers and 104 RBI in 1997.
Snow spent the bulk of his career in San Francisco, of course, from '97 through 2005, and finished up with the Red Sox this year, playing in 38 games as a defensive replacement, with just 44 at-bats. He hadn't been a full-time player in years anyway.
- Ted Lilly was signed by Jim Hendry as the Cubs GM went in for an angioplasty.
- The Cubs also signed Daryle Ward to a one-year deal.
- We got J.R. House, which is an intriguing pickup.
- The winter meeting draft had a few somewhat notable happenings, including the Cubs picking up Josh Hamilton (remember Josh Hamilton?) and then sending him to the Reds for cash. The Yankees made their first pick since 1995, picking up Josh Phelps from us.
- Tony Graffanino has accepted arbitration from Milwaukee.
- Travis Harper has been released by the D-Rays. Someone get Flanaquette on the horn -- another relief pitcher is out there!
- Keith Foulke is going to decline arbitration. MIKE! JIM! KEITH FOULKE!