Jacksonville, AR (AP) - "I'm taking my talents to Huntington."
And, with that statement, Michael Dransfeldt became the second most hated man in Cleveland.
Speaking at a press conference in his hometown, Dransfeldt stated that he felt that Cleveland was too cosmopolitan and snobbish for his tastes.
"I hated that place, man. They were a bunch of snobs that never accepted me for who I am. I like to drink warm beer out of a can. I think it is more convenient to have my washing machine on the front porch. I don't even like to wear shoes during the offseason. Huntington seems more like my kind of town. Heck, it can't be that big, I'd never even heard of it."
Cleveland owner and GM dcbove appeared dismayed about how the negotations had ended. "We had offered him a large extension last season and had a 5 year, $85 million deal on the table when he signed elsewhere. He just didn't want to come back."
The Spiders will miss Dransfeldt's production on the field. He had 9 Silver Sluggers, 5 Gold Gloves, and 8 All-Star appearances in his 10 years as a major league 3rd baseman. He was an MVP finalist 9 times though he never won an MVP. However, GM dcbove said they won't miss his antics off of the field.
"It is hard to understand such a horrible lack of loyalty. We squashed the rumors that he had fixed games during the Season 16 playoffs when he hit only .188. We covered up his meth addiction and the subsequent relapses that led to such a substandard Season 19. We overlooked his questionable relationships with prostitutes and farm animals. Apparently Michael did not appreciate our efforts."
Cleveland has already stated their intention to move Enrique Astacio from shortstop to third base and call up Tony Plata to play shortstop. Rumors have swirled that they've dangled Gil Thornton and Devaris Barker in an effort to acquire a corner outfielder.
"I can't comment on any deals," said dcbove. "If we can find a bat to replace Dransfeldt then we'll make a move. Otherwise we intend to rely on some of our prospects. With all the money that we'll have lying around, we expect to be huge players in the IFA market this year."
As for Dransfeldt? "I plan on drinking a quart of Wild Turkey tonight and then driving my truck out into the swamp to shoot me some racoons. Just like every Saturday."
One can only imagine that his old neighbors in Cleveland won't miss him. His production, however, will be sorely missed.