Another New Year is upon us and I am sitting at the computer surfing the Internet in search of baseball. It has been 82 days since Todd Pratt ended the Diamondbacks play-off run with his game-winning home run. I think I am over being depressed at that and I am now looking forward to spring training, which starts in 46 days. I find I am missing being at Bank One Ballpark. Last week I went down to Friday’s Front Row Grill for lunch just so that I could see how the field is doing. I wish the Diamondbacks would install a web camera at the field just so that I could at least watch the grass grow or better yet, see who is working out at the stadium. I think I will have to go and take the Bank One Ballpark tour just so I can hang out at the stadium.


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The Arizona Diamondbacks avoid salary arbitration by signing infielder/outfielder Tony Womack to a 4-year contract extension valued at $17 million. Womack spent much of the 1999 season playing right field for the Diamondbacks after being traded from the Pittsburgh Pirates in February. Current plans have Tony moving back to the infield for the 2000 season taking over the everyday shortstop job. Womack is one of four Diamondbacks players eligible for salary arbitration. The team continues to negotiate with the other three players, Brian Anderson, Andy Fox, and Matt Mantei. The Diamondbacks hope to have all under contract before the middle of January.


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During the long winter months, baseball fans in many parts of the country sit huddled around their fireplaces hoping and praying for any baseball news. Winter is a time of slumber, a time to dream of what might be when spring flowers begin to bloom in Arizona and Florida. For fans, it is a time to ponder the moves their favorite club may make to be a contender or win a championship. But it is also a time when teams can do the most damage. Not necessarily to their line-up, but also to their credibility and fan loyalty. Each year, baseball holds its winter meetings. During these meetings, proposed deals are flung about like small ships in a typhoon. Everyone is trying to better their situation in order to sell more tickets and fill the stands next season. It is here where the danger lies.


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