What’s a legitimate rumor, and what isn’t?

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With the offseason having started weeks ago, baseball fans have been treated to rumors and speculation as to what their teams are going after. Some rumors have legitimacy, like Josh Johnson’s return to the NL after a disastrous AL tenure, (he signed with the San Diego Padres), some have almost no credibility, like the supposed Dominic Brown for Jose Bautista swap. (It was debunked by Philadelphia)

And then there are the completely dunderheaded rumors.

Baseball fans from the Mets and Brewers were given this today when Matthew Cerrone, the head of Metsblog, an otherwise reputable site, reported that the Brewers were more intent on moving disgraced outfielder Ryan Braun than Norichika Aoki, and would consider sending him to the Mets for much maligned first baseman Ike Davis.

Um…What?

As much as a colossal dick Ryan Braun made himself out to be for appealing his suspension then launching a smear campaign against a urine collector, Brewers management could not possibly be that stupid.

Sure, we don’t know if Braun is going to be the same guy he was pre-suspension or if he’ll just be another Melky Cabrera, but the logic just doesn’t make sense here.

1. Braun is as recognizable a public figure in Milwaukee as Aaron Rodgers is for Green Bay, to trade him, regardless of his indiscretions would be akin to telling pretty much every Brewers fan who hasn’t turned on him (not exactly sure how many people that would be) that they will punt on 2014. Braun is in every way, shape and form, steroids or no steroids, a better athlete than Davis, a better hitter, a more rounded individual talent, and one who actually has hardware to showcase.

2. The Brewers would not be stupid enough just to ask for Davis. Braun, while his value is diminished, would probably command at least one top level prospect, a pitcher perhaps, maybe Rafael Montero or Gabriel Ynoa, not to mention a mid level prospect like Gavin Cecchini.

3. Cerrone also pointed out in later posts that the Brewers would possibly “eat some of Braun’s salary” in the deal, and that the Mets had “at least internal discussions”. about Braun. Ok, if that’s true, WHERE IN GOD’S NAME ARE YOUR SOURCES?????????????? If that’s not enough where was your original source that said the Brewers were more interested in moving Braun? A baseball rumor is not like a schoolyard rumor. There must be a source, and not a “he said, she said” source. You also can’t make up things on the spot, this isn’t like MLB 2k13 where you can make a trade out of nowhere,

While this type of rumor can be retracted easily if the market was manageable, the media market that this rumor is intended for unfortunately pounced on the rumor and blew it into a story. USA Today and ESPN both reported Cerrone’s story as a legitimate rumor. Bleacher Report posted a response article to the rumor as well.

In the case of rumors, especially those based in large media markets, the only credible one that Mets fans have heard involved Robinson Cano. Cano and his representatives, namely Jay-Z, met with Mets management. Now does this indicate anything? Theories range that the Mets may have interest but will not give Cano the money to Cano’s camp gauging interest so that he can get the deal he wants. The logic in this is that it’s too early. Not every big ticket free agent is going to sign early, look at Michael Bourn, who had to wait until a few weeks before Spring Training last year. Cano may or may not get the money he wants, but if there is one rumor that should be treated, it should be one that comes out of the general manager’s mouth. Sandy Alderson confirmed that Cano’s camp met with the Mets brass. Cano’s camp confirmed. News outlets wrote about it, boom, story official.

So be careful where you get your rumors this offseason, some may have legitimacy, some may not, and some may be ridiculous.

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