Somewhere high atop Progressive Field, Mark Shapiro is sitting in a tower, watching over all of us.
Okay not really, he most likely is hard at work being the Team President of the Cleveland Indians. But in my mind, Shapiro has a decorated tower that he sits in and watches, giving off grunts of anger and pounding his fist at select moments in time when he isn't pleased.
This is all a bold-faced lie. Like much of the following piece is, but I'm sure somewhere in there you can find the real truth that I'm trying to convey.
As always, the conversations in this article are not real but the people are. The language they are talking in is not real, but the words they speak are.
Quite frankly, I'm ready to throw "Shapiroese" into my languages on my Facebook profile quite like others use Pig Latin. That will show them!
12/20/2010 - Austin Kearns Signs One-Year Deal
Chris Antonetti: Austin, I'm so pleased to have you back in the fold. I'm glad you were open to coming back to Cleveland.
Austin Kearns: The pleasure is all on this side of the table. Trust me, there's no other place I'd rather be, I even bought a house here!
Antonetti: In... Cleveland?
Kearns: Yeah, what's wrong with this place?
Antonetti: Look, I love Cleveland, but what about those rumors we heard about you and the Yankees? Quite frankly, I'm shocked you aren't wearing the pin-stripes again.
Kearns: Well... I wasn't going to play much there, you know that.
Antonetti: True, but they offered you more money... Didn't they?
Kearns: Well... Not exactly.
Antonetti: Austin! Your agent led me to believe we were competing with the Yankees who were coming at you with a major league deal and $3 million.
Kearns: Yeah, about that.
Antonetti: The only offered you a minor league contract didn't they?
Kearns: Hey, just remember when you recount this conversation; you were the one that said that.
Antonetti: Austin! I want a redo.
Kearns: There's no redo! I already signed the deal. Guaranteed contract, one million in the bank for The Kearnal! Come on, I deserve it!
Antonetti: Man that's some Boras-stuff right there; I can't believe you guys did that to me.
Kearns: Settle down, every good general manager makes some mistakes early on and throughout his career. This is a small one. You could have had me at a non-guaranteed deal, but instead you pay me a little more and I get to push Trevor Crowe back off the roster.
Antonetti: Well, that's a good point.
Kearns: And... and and and and my friend... I'm not David Dellucci and you didn't give me three years.
Antonetti: I always have that in my back pocket with Mark, don't I?
Kearns: That you do Chris, that you do.
1/17/2011 - Asdrubal Cabrera Avoids Arbitration
Chris Antonetti: Look Alan, let me be honest with you. Asdrubal has a bright future here, but he had a down year last season.
Alan Nero: Yeah, but you know damn well that fat Peralta guy is a reason for it. He broke Asdrubal's arm by sitting on him.
Antonetti: He fell on him Alan, he didn't sit on him.
Nero: Same difference.
Antonetti: We're going no higher than $2 million, it's his first year of arbitration and he'll make more down the road.
Nero: Can't we discuss a long-term deal like we did with Victor? Asdrubal wants to be here long term. You guys don't find that very often.
Antonetti: I'm not going to get burned early in the process. We feel like he is a part of our future, but the timing just isn't right. We're trying to work out something with Choo and that stickler Boras; you know how it is with him. Choo is priority number one; we can talk about Cabrera next year when he gets back on track. Trust me; it will benefit you guys much more.
Nero: $2 million eh? Alright well can you throw in an extra 25 thousand so I can get a higher commission?
Nero: Yeah, come on, you won't miss that extra 25, I can put up a new porch outside if Cabby makes a little more.
Antonetti: What the hell are you talking about Alan?
Antonetti: You know what, I just don't have time for this, take the extra 25, pleasure doing business with you Alan, keep in touch.
1/18/2011 - Chris Perez Avoids Arbitration
Chris Antonetti: How much?
Chris Perez: How much are you giving Rafael?
Antonetti: We haven't talked to him or his agent yet.
Perez: You gave Cabrera over $2 million, so at least that, probably more.
Antonetti: But you're a reliever.
Perez: But I'm a closer.
Antonetti: $2.225 million?
Perez: Works for me.
Antonetti: I knew I liked you for a reason.
1/18/2011 - Rafael Perez Avoids Arbitration
Chris Antonetti: We're giving you $1.33 million this year.
Rafael Perez: What?
Antonetti: Just sign this.
1/18/2011- Shin-Soo Choo Avoids Arbitration
Chris Antonetti: Alright Scott, look. We've had this streak going on since 1991, perhaps you've heard about it.
Scott Boras: I'm making it my personal goal to break your streak. I'm Stanford, you're the Connecticut women's basketball team. I'm Kevin Nash, you're Bill Goldberg. You're Brett Favre, I'm a concussion, a broken foot and ankle surgery all rolled into one. You're Cal Ripken, I'm the flu!
Antonetti: Ripken's streak didn't end because of the flu. That's the last thing that would have ended Cal's streak.
Boras: It was the flu because I say it was the flu! Mystery team!
Antonetti: Stop this... We need to discuss this Choo contract, because quite frankly, we really don't want to go to arbitration.
Boras: Why, is the boogeyman in the hearing room?
Antonetti: No, he's in my office right now.
Antonetti: What's it going to take? No games, no tricks, no mystery team, no crazy demands. Bottom line, what do you want?
Boras: $5 million...and a pony.
Antonetti: You're an ass, you know that right?
Boras: The ending of my name says it all.
Antonetti: That's actually not as outrageous as I was expecting. $3 million.
Boras: So you just want to haggle then? Is that how you operate Antenetni?
Antonetti: It's Antonetti and you can just call me Chris.
Boras: Look, Shin-Sun Chan is one of my most valuable clients; I'm not going to let you take advantage of him.
Antonetti: It's Shin-Soo Choo, you don't even know his name!
Boras: He doesn't even know what I'm saying to him half the time! What's the difference?
Antonetti: The difference is you really don't give a damn about him.
Boras: Sure I do. How else am I going to make money?
Antonetti: How about $3.5?
Boras: Man you're easy, already increasing your price and I didn't even lower mine. $6 million!
Antonetti: You're going up! I said no games.
Boras: That's with interest for wasting my time.
Antonetti: You're wasting my time!
Boras: How about we talk about Matt LaPorta while I'm here.
Antonetti: You really don't want to go down that road right now. You saw him play last year, right?
Boras: Yeah, he hit like 20 home runs.
Antonetti: That was his last year in Florida you goof.
Boras: $2 million?
Antonetti: Wait... What? You're now lower than what I proposed for Choo.
Boras: No that's for LaPorta.
Antonetti: Get out of here, this isn't a game Scott.
Boras: Yes it is...We call it baseball.
Antonetti: I can't give you $4 million; Dolan will not let me, so let's just call it at $3.975 million, please?
Boras: Yeah whatevs, sounds good to me. Would have done it for the $3.5 but now I can get a pony with the extra dough.
Antonetti: You're ridiculous.
Boras: No, I'm a mastermind. Want to talk long-term deal?
Antonetti: I think I've had enough for one day Scott. No thanks.
You can follow Nino on Twitter @TheTribeDaily where he starts the Shapiroese dictionary. You can also follow his blog on Facebook.