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All these deals, Beckett to Boston, Delgado to the Mets, await a doctor's concurrence. The Winter Meetings are about 2 weeks away, and the moves are beginning to be made. So, Bauxites, what do you think?
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Sherrystar - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 11:05 AM EST (#132803) #
I'm hoping J.P. gives me a reason to renew my Flexpack!

It's too quiet in BlueJay land these days... maybe that's a good thing???
SK in NJ - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 11:18 AM EST (#132805) #
From Rotoworld:

"The Red Sox have spoken to the Rangers about Adrian Gonzalez, the Boston Globe reports.
The Globe mentions outfield prospect Brandon Moss and catcher Kelly Shoppach as candidates to be exchanged for Gonzalez, though neither fits a need for a Rangers team looking for pitching. Gonzalez for Bronson Arroyo might make sense, but Boston would probably want a little more in return."

The Red Sox are mighty busy despite not having a general manager.

I know it's only Thanksgiving, but I hope JP does something soon. I'm anxious to get this off-season underway.
Smaj - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 11:42 AM EST (#132810) #
I am surprised that Florida is kicking in $7M to the Mets.
Petit is not a power pitcher despite his exceelent K/IP & K/BB ratios. He was hit hard in AAA during a short stint of 3 starts. Jacobs can catch or play 1st base & really had an impressive 100 AB debut with the Mets raking 11 times.

In the end the Marlins pay Delgado $11M over three years for one season of production & obtain Jacobs and Yusmeiro Petit. Time will tell. Mets give up two prospects & owe Delgado a minimum of $41M over the next 3 years assuming they exercise the $4M buyout UNLESS Delgado exercises his Trade Request Rights after the World Series in 2006.

Things seem very quiet on the Jays front. Plan A obviously is to acquire free agent pitching (AJ & BJ). Plan B is probably the trade front. Interesting to see if FLA's purge acts as a catalyst for other clubs to deal sooner rather than later, which may force JP into the fray.
VBF - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 11:49 AM EST (#132811) #
We'll all get a nice, hard look at how Delgado is doing when he pays a visit to the Rogers Centre June 23rd-25th.
Chuck - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 12:30 PM EST (#132814) #
We'll all get a nice, hard look at how Delgado is doing when he pays a visit to the Rogers Centre June 23rd-25th.

At which point a ridiculously disproportionate percentage of the crowd will boo the greatest hitter in team history, proving that most fans are media lapdogs. What? Too cynical?

VBF - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 12:37 PM EST (#132815) #
No way, Chuck. At the last game of the season, when the 47,000 fans in attendance gave him a standing ovation, *everybody* knew he wasn't returning. Toronto accepted it and applauded his efforts and there's no indication that the feeling has changed.

He will get the loudest ovation in team history. This isn't David Wells returning or Shannon Stewart.
Named For Hank - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 12:44 PM EST (#132816) #
which may force JP into the fray

From everything he's said, it's apparent that J.P. Ricciardi wants to be in the fray right now. And for all we know, he is.

Don't forget, he's already set a deadline on the A.J. acquisition -- if they don't have him by the winter meetings, the Jays will be actively working on plan B.
Chuck - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 12:47 PM EST (#132817) #
This is one occasion where I would definitely love to be proven wrong.

I attended Gary Carter's first game back at Olympic Stadium. Here was a guy, the much beloved "Kid", who was traded away and still, received more than few boos.

Jordan - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 12:53 PM EST (#132818) #
I'm not sure the comparison to Stewart is apropos. Shannon left the team by trade, whereas Delgado left via free agency, which is usually the route that breeds the most resentment hereabouts (Robbie Alomar was getting booed at Skydome well before The Spit). Unless you force a trade out of town (e.g., Boomer, Clemens, Doyle Alexander), the locals will ususally give you a fairly warm reception upon your return.

That said, I also expect Delgado to be given an ovation when he comes back. For one thing, he went to Florida in large part because the Jays didn't want him back, not because he made absurd demands of the team. For another, he had a good public image here and that usually holds up over time. Third, and I think most importantly, the local media loved him, and so they'll run all sorts of stories about "Return of the Hero" and so forth when the Mets visit (especially if Delgado's outhitting whoever's playing first base for Toronto, which he almost certainly will be). Since most of the cattle that shows up at your average Jays game relies on what the Sun or Fan 590 tells them to think, they'll cheer loudly. Which is what they should do, of course.
NDG - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 12:54 PM EST (#132819) #
Mets give up two prospects & owe Delgado a minimum of $41M over the next 3 years

From what I've read the $7 million is to cover the tax escalation clause in Delgado's contract, the Mets still owe hime $48 million.

Jordan - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 01:09 PM EST (#132820) #
Also, I have little doubt that Delgado will start standing for the God Bless America segment of the 7th-inning stretch when he becomes a Met. You have to know that's one of the first things that will be discussed upon his arrival, because they take that stuff very, very seriously in New York City.

I also have little doubt we'll soon start seeing accusations of "Sellout!" and worse thrown Delgado's way once he makes this change, which is extremely unfortunate. Delgado has been very consistent about this practice ever since he was a Jay: it's a personal thing he does to reflect his views on US policy regarding the Middle East and Puerto Rico, and he will do it only as long as it doesn't bother his employers. If the ballclub he's playing for asks him to stop, he'll stop. Rest assured, the Mets will ask him to stop.

Delgado's choice was always made out to be more than it actually was, making him an unfair target for some and an inappropriate hero for others. Whatever else about Carlos, he's his own man. The people and groups who tried to co-opt and use him and his actions for their personal political benefit will end up with what they deserve.

Named For Hank - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 01:14 PM EST (#132821) #
and so they'll run all sorts of stories about "Return of the Hero" and so forth

Who wants to bet we'll see the Return of the King banner on TV again in the promos for his return?

I love being stock footage.
TimberLee - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 01:16 PM EST (#132822) #
I could never understand why Americans would even expect a man from Puerto Rico who worked in Canada to make a show of support for US foreign policy. But then I'm not a US of American.
VBF - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 01:21 PM EST (#132823) #
Good point Jordan. I've found that the fans generally hold a grudge to the players from the post World Series pre-JP era like Gonzalez, Stewart, Batista, even though those three didn't really do anything morally wrong. It may have had to do with the mediocrity, or the fact that we had quite a few mediocre players. But Delgado wasn't mediocre. Years of MVPish service (or approaching) should be enough to gain Toronto's respect if it hasn't been gained already.
Jordan - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 01:26 PM EST (#132824) #
Well, again, keep in mind that the criticism Delgado received wasn't because of his foreign policy views. It was because some people interpreted his refusal to stand for GBA as somehow equivalent to refusing to honour the people who died on 9/11 and refusing to support the American state against terrorist threats. It's a specious equivalence, but it's easy to make and even easier to spread.

The fact is that MLB needs to stop playing this otherwise perfectly acceptable song during the 7th-inning stretch. It adds a political and grim dimension to what is supposed to be an apolitical and fun experience at the ballpark. Take Me Out To The Ballgame got their country through several wars before now, and it will get them through this one if they just let it. One anthem per game is enough.

Pepper Moffatt - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 01:34 PM EST (#132825) #
It adds a political and grim dimension to what is supposed to be an apolitical and fun experience at the ballpark.

Even still, they play the anthem at the beginning of the game, which is naturally a political statement.

I've always felt that anthems are bizarre and out of place at sporting events. It's not like they do that at the movies or before a play or something. I hesitate to point that out, though, lest I give anyone ideas.

Magpie - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 01:43 PM EST (#132826) #
It's not like they do that at the movies or before a play or something.

Don't they do something similar in England? A night at the theater begins (or ends, I dunno) with "God Save the Queen/King"

Mike D - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 01:47 PM EST (#132827) #
Jordan, the treatment of GBA is controversial in the U.S., and even in New York. I may be wrong about this, but my understanding is that only the Yankees play it during every game. Most U.S.-based clubs play it only on Sundays and holidays, including, I believe, the Mets.

Opinion of New Yorkers on GBA at ballgames is not as united as you might think. New York City proper was roughly 75% opposed to a unilateral invasion of Iraq, and at the last Yankee game I went to, someone hollered "End The War!" during GBA, to scattered applause.

Of course, many New York fans deeply honour GBA, and many were very upset with Delgado. But as you noted earlier in another context, fans often think what tabloids and sports talk radio tell them to think. The New York Post, in particular, features both an excellent and fan-friendly sports section and a stridently right-wing editorial desk that is fanatically hawkish -- sometimes to the point of bloodthirst, as with the now-infamous post-9/11 "Simply Kill The Bastards" op-ed.

Delgado's subtle protest went largely unnoticed in the press until the Post wrote a sharply critical article of him. Predictably, the New York Times sports section followed it (days later as usual) with a more nuanced piece on Delgado's politics. Understandably, the Post readers in the Bronx -- of whom there are many -- were not happy with Carlos.
Mike D - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 01:50 PM EST (#132828) #
It's interesting that FIFA is considering outlawing national anthems for the Germany '06 World Cup. During qualifying, hostile reactions to the visiting team's anthem sparked ugly incidents in several stadia.
Jordan - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 01:51 PM EST (#132829) #
Mike, thanks for the information -- it's heartening to hear that the opinion bloc in NY maybe isn't as solid as I had imagined, and that the frequency of playing the song has dropped (I got used to changing the channel in the 7th inning of playoff games). Maybe it won't be as bad for Carlos with the Mets as I had feared.
VBF - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 01:53 PM EST (#132830) #
I've always felt that anthems are bizarre and out of place at sporting events. It's not like they do that at the movies or before a play or something. I hesitate to point that out, though, lest I give anyone ideas.

They actually used to do this in Canada many moons ago.

Sherrystar - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 01:54 PM EST (#132831) #
Mike D, great post.

My experience has been that most Americans were/are aganst the war and if it wasn't for the right-wing media (and government!) controlling everything, Carlos standing for GBA wouldn't be such a big issue (and the fact the Yankees didn't get Delgado or Beckett would be!)

Mike D - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 02:01 PM EST (#132832) #
I don't quite agree, Sherrystar. Most Americans are currently against the war, but it's not accurate to say that most Americans were against the war. It was hotly disputed by both sides at the time.

I know I'm the one who got the ball rolling on this topic, but I'd like to respectfully suggest that we switch back to baseball chat. I don't pretend to suggest that my view, or Carlos Delgado's view, of foreign policy deserves any in-depth examination here on Batter's Box.
Jordan - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 02:14 PM EST (#132833) #
Seconded.
Lefty - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 02:21 PM EST (#132834) #
God Save the Queen is not played before league soccer games, but is played before internationals.
Sherrystar - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 02:27 PM EST (#132836) #
Ok, back to J.P. ...

Are things way too quiet in Jayland or what? (except those flexpack commericals they have on the FAN590!)

Isn't this usually when things happen, not when everyone is reporting it in the papers?

I sure hope so
John Northey - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 02:46 PM EST (#132837) #
I've always felt that anthems are bizarre and out of place at sporting events. It's not like they do that at the movies or before a play or something. I hesitate to point that out, though, lest I give anyone ideas.

Actually, at the 5-Drive In in Oakville they play the Canadian anthem before the movies start every night. Kind of fun as the video they show is the same one I recall from when I was a kid that was shown on tv stations when they started up for a new broadcast day (yes, I used to be a very early riser).
Magpie - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 02:51 PM EST (#132838) #
I thought Brian Giles would be looking for more than this, unless he was offering a hometown discount. He is a California guy. From Ken Rosenthal:

Barring a last-minute reversal, Giles seems destined to leave the Padres. Giles recently gave the club his final proposal, believed to be in the range of $30 million over three years. The Padres almost certainly won't invest that much in one player...

I think Giles is going to end up making more than that...

costanza - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 03:08 PM EST (#132839) #
(Robbie Alomar was getting booed at Skydome well before The Spit)

Robbie Alomar was booed largely because he didn't leave on good terms, and there was the perception that he quit on the team long before he left via free agency. (Given the fact that Alomar went on to seeminly quit on the O's after their fortunes turned for the worse, it seems the perception had basis)

Alomar sat out the last few games of the '95 season with an injury, which just happened to leave his average at .300 for the year. I was at the last couple games that year and, since it seemed a given that Robbie wasn't coming back, I (and, no doubt, others) wanted to show my appreciation... no such luck.

(Again, the fact that he ended his *career* with a .300 average lends credence to the argument that those sort of things mattered to him, and that preserving the BA was a big factor in him not finishing the '95 season)

I was sort of willing to give him the benefit of the doubt at the time, and was there to cheer his return as an Oriole -- there was a definite mixture of applause and boos, it didn't seem to clearly tilt one way or the other.

costanza - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 03:24 PM EST (#132840) #
Sorry, one more thing:

Shannon left the team by trade, whereas Delgado left via free agency, which is usually the route that breeds the most resentment hereabouts

I think that most people would make the distinction between a guy who left by free agency because he wasn't wanted, and a guy who left despite significant efforts made to re-sign them.

Guys like Henke, Winfield, Carter, etc. would fit into the former category, as would Delgado. Actually, Delgado's situation is probably closest to Escobar's or George Bell's -- the club made token offers, but clearly wasn't ready to pay anywhere near the "going rate". Of course, Carlos didn't take any "parting shots" on his way out like Jorge...

Come to think of it, it's hard to think of FAs the Jays really wanted to keep, but couldn't. Leiter comes to mind immediately (thanks, Beeston), but other than that... who is there? Devon White, I guess? In recent years, the team seems to have traded away most guys before letting it get to that point (or held on until the players had little value left)...

sweat - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 03:33 PM EST (#132841) #
I was never a huge fan of Carlos, but I didn't fault him for leaving the Jays. It's not like Delgado spurned the Jays for an extra 50,000 a year.
Maldoff - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 03:35 PM EST (#132842) #
Breaking news from ESPN.com:

"Jim Thome's big bat might be launching home runs on the South Side next season. The White Sox and the Phillies are on the verge of a deal that would send Aaron Rowand to Philly for Thome, Buster Olney is reporting."

Guess that means a new DH in Chi-town, unless Konerko is gone.
sweat - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 03:44 PM EST (#132843) #
Even getting cash, Thome should be making at least 12M per. Can the Chisox afford Thome and Konerko?
Shortstop - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 03:57 PM EST (#132844) #
You're a team built on speed and defense and you trade a gold glove caliber centre fielder for Thome. i love Thome, but i don;t like this trade.
huckamaniac - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 03:58 PM EST (#132845) #
If Giles ends up with the Yankees it will be interesting to see how fits in there. I was listening to Jim Rome yesterday and from what he was saying, Giles sounds like quite the character (taking naked bp, giving taking over from the team masseuse and giving Kevin Towers rub down and blowing on his back). You'd have to wonder how that stuff would go over in NY, it would either break up some of the tension or just divide them further.
binnister - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 03:59 PM EST (#132846) #
It depends on how much cash goes Chicago's way, but I've got to say that (IMO) Philly is making out better than I thought they would.

Rowand is a kid (28) who has been very consistant over the last few years, is just about to hit his prime, and has a reasonable contract (to offset the 'extra' money that goes Chicago's way).

From Chicago's perspective, it means they don't need to sign Carl Everett (which is a good thing, I suppose) and they are dealling from a position of strength (evidently, they have a number of good OF's in the system).

Looks like a Win-Win to me.
dave - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 04:00 PM EST (#132847) #
From blair's latest blog entry:

"the Blue Jays have quietly hedged their bets in case B.J. Ryan signs elsewhere. The team has had what a source described as being preliminary conversations with another free agent, Tom (Flash) Gordon, who was the main set-up man for Mariano Rivera with the New York Yankees and who has said he would like to be somebody's full-time closer. Two agents have said in recent days that they believe the Blue Jays are now the front-runners for Ryan"


http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20051101.wblai/BNStory/Sports/
Cristian - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 04:20 PM EST (#132848) #
Rowand is a kid (28) who has been very consistant over the last few years, is just about to hit his prime

Some would say that Rowand has already hit his prime. As for his consistency, check this out (avg/obp/slg):

2004: .310/.361/.544

2005: .270/.329/.407

and his 2004 line is closer to his career line. Depending on the cash going Chicago's way, this could be another brilliant move by Kenny.

Cristian - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 04:27 PM EST (#132849) #
Ack. I mean Rowand's 2005 line is closer to his career line.
zaptom - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 04:27 PM EST (#132850) #
If the Jays sign BJ Ryan, what role does Batista? Our bullpen from this season should continue their promising development and in no way will Batista return as a starter. That said, he is overpaid and is comming off a rather unsuccessful season as a closer. I'd assume JP would love any trade for a big bat to include Batista, but again, I doubt any team really wants to have him.

Assuming BJ Ryan signs with Toronto, JP not only needs to sign AJ, and get a couple bats in the lineup (without sacrificing long term development), but he also has this relatively tricking situation with Batista. Even if we fail to get BJ, and aside from him there are no top-quality closers on the market, how will Batista react in the next season knowing that the team is trying to replace him?
Chuck - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 04:31 PM EST (#132851) #
I was never a huge fan of Carlos, but I didn't fault him for leaving the Jays. It's not like Delgado spurned the Jays for an extra 50,000 a year.

And if he had? So what? It's one thing to boo a guy for not playing hard and honouring a contract. It's another thing entirely to boo him for not signing a contract. Whatever the reason.

binnister - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 04:44 PM EST (#132853) #
Kenny Williams brillant blah blah blah

Sorry, you lost me there :)

In all fairness,

IF the ChiSox have an in-house replacement for Rowand who can match or exceed his 2005 perfomance, AND

IF Thome is relatively healthy in 2006 and gets 400AB's or so (a BIG IF, IMO, but not unreasonable if he ONLY DH's), AND

IF the money going Chicago's way brings Thome's yearly bill to under $10M

THEN I might be willing to hand out the brillant label. In my opinion, the White Sox will need to have a lot of things go right for them to REALLY win this deal. The Phillies, on the other hand, are winners here simply by getting rid of Thome (whom they didn't have for most of last season anyway, & who have Howard to pick up the lost power) and getting a very useful 'Gold Glove'-calibre CF who MIGHT yet hit 20-25 HR a year.

I still think its a 'good' deal for both teams, but I wouldn't be surprised if Philly is judged to have won the deal come next October.

Jabes - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 04:53 PM EST (#132854) #
Before anybody cries that JP should have taken a shot at Thome, just remember the man has a no-trade clause, he would not come to Toronto.

As for Delgado, sure he'd be nice to have back, but his contract is still way too steep.
Cristian - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 04:56 PM EST (#132855) #
IF the ChiSox have an in-house replacement for Rowand who can match or exceed his 2005 perfomance,

Brian Anderson. Check.

AND IF Thome is relatively healthy in 2006 and gets 400AB's or so (a BIG IF, IMO, but not unreasonable if he ONLY DH's),

IF the Phillies are picking up a portion of Thome's salary, contingency plans can be purchased in case Thome doesn't bounce back. Besides, Thome as an old injury riddled first baseman only replaces Frank Thomas (Thome is younger than Thomas by the way)

AND IF the money going Chicago's way brings Thome's yearly bill to under $10M

Check. Based on what I've read so far.

Ron - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 05:08 PM EST (#132856) #
The Jays could sign AJ AND BJ Ryan, but if they don't upgrade the bats, the team is going nowhere.

If Giles is indeed looking for around 3yrs/30 mil than the Jays should be in the thick of it. At first I wasn't a big fan of Giles because of his age, but then I realized what better realistic options are out there on the FA or trade market? Probably not much.
Chuck - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 05:20 PM EST (#132857) #
The Jays could sign AJ AND BJ Ryan, but if they don't upgrade the bats, the team is going nowhere.

I don't think they'll get either. I agree that they need bats but it seems the only thing available to spend their money is pitching. As such, I'd presume they'd buy what they can and then attempt to trade surplus pitching for hitting.

Named For Hank - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 05:28 PM EST (#132858) #
"the Blue Jays have quietly hedged their bets in case B.J. Ryan signs elsewhere. The team has had what a source described as being preliminary conversations with another free agent, Tom (Flash) Gordon, who was the main set-up man for Mariano Rivera with the New York Yankees and who has said he would like to be somebody's full-time closer. Two agents have said in recent days that they believe the Blue Jays are now the front-runners for Ryan"

Tom Gordon saved my fantasy team two years running. As a result, I adore Tom Gordon. I would definitely be getting myself a Gordon jersey if he came to Toronto. And maybe name my next kid Gordon, too.
slitheringslider - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 05:30 PM EST (#132859) #
The Jays could sign AJ AND BJ Ryan, but if they don't upgrade the bats, the team is going nowhere.

I don't necessary agree. Pitching and defence wins championships.

That being said, a upgrade on offence never hurts anyone.
R Billie - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 05:33 PM EST (#132860) #
Why not sign AJ/BJ and then trade for young blue chip hitters like Kotchman, Gonzalez, and Jackson who might be available?

Why are playoff teams like the Red Sox getting good young assets like Beckett and pursuing Adrian Gonzalez while Toronto seems not to be? Aren't these younger bang for the buck players exactly what Toronto needs?

And yet since Lilly two years ago no more such players have been brought in. It's like the building up has stopped outside of whatever players are filtering up from the minors already.

It's pretty hard to build up a team to compete with richer teams who have a big headstart in talent when the addition of talent is so slow and the attrition of talent is so fast.
GeoffAtMac - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 05:57 PM EST (#132861) #

I am starting to feel better about our chances of getting AJ or BJ -- but I am not sure that we will get both.

It's not like we don't have the cash, it's just that it would be a major event to get two guys like that. (Beating everybody on the market on both players would be very impressive to say the least.)

A couple of questions though...

1. What does everybody think about the Mets right now? To me, they look pretty dangerous.

Delgado, Wright, Reyes, Beltran (if v. 2004 comes back), Floyd, Nady -- this is a very nice series of hitters for a team to have coming to the plate every day. (There are other guys like Victor Diaz that looked promising too.)

And if they sign Wagner, they look to me like a very strong team. (I don't think their pitching is as strong as their offense necessarily, but they are still pretty solid in either category.)

2. I know everybody was talking about Calvin Pickering a while back. I recently read that he was DFAed and is now playing in Mexico? Is that true?

And if it is true, why aren't the Jays signing him to a minor league contract. Isn't this guy a David Ortiz type?

VBF - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 06:00 PM EST (#132862) #
Tom Gordon saved my fantasy team two years running. As a result, I adore Tom Gordon. I would definitely be getting myself a Gordon jersey if he came to Toronto. And maybe name my next kid Gordon, too.

Not to mention he has the *ultimate* closer's music.

Ron - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 06:04 PM EST (#132863) #
I'm hoping Kornerko signs with the Halo's because that would probably mean Kotchman is available in a trade. I'm a big Kotchman fan and think he's going to do some serious damage next season if he plays a full schedule.

I'm not sure what the Halo's would be looking for though. Their big league and minor rosters are stacked. Perhaps if Byrd bolts, they might have some interest in Chacin and another prospect.
rocococo - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 06:25 PM EST (#132865) #
http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=2234843

phillies are apparently giving the chisox $22 mil. Thats almost half of what he is still due. looks like a good deal by the chisox.
binnister - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 06:39 PM EST (#132866) #
Phillies reported to pay $22M of $43.5M remaining on Thome's 3 year contract

So the bottom line:

Chicago gets: an old Thome @ ~$7.5M a year for the next 3 years. Top prospect (Anderson) replaces Rowand.

Philly gets: a youngish Rowand @ ~$3.25M a year for 2 years & $21.5M savings from the contract. Howard replaces Thome

It still looks good for both teams.

It still comes down to Thome's health.

(and no, I still don't think Kenny's brilliant, but this is certainly an excellent 'Medium Risk/High Reward' deal he's put together)

Named For Hank - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 07:02 PM EST (#132867) #
Why are playoff teams like the Red Sox getting good young assets like Beckett and pursuing Adrian Gonzalez while Toronto seems not to be?

Okay, about appearances: how many media reports with rumors of that specific Red Sox - Marlins deal did you see? How many did you see about Delgado to the Mets? How many about Thome to the White Sox?

The rumors you read in the paper are not representative of the reality of who's going after what. Until someone asks Ricciardi directly if he went after Beckett and Ricciardi answers that he didn't, we really have nothing to tell us that he didn't. So there were no rumors of it -- so what? More than likely, that means that there was no advantage to anyone's agent to float such a rumor to get a better deal from another team.
braden - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 07:06 PM EST (#132868) #
Not sure if it has been mentioned but the White Sox apparently also kicked in Gio Gonzalez AND Daniel Haigwood.

This deal looks a LOT better for the Phillies now.
Toro54 - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 07:16 PM EST (#132869) #
I have an idea for the Jays (or any smart team):

What about Ryan Shealy (Rockies AAA 1B, .328/.393/.601 [.994 OPS!] and blocked behind Helton)? His numbers are great, and although I don't know how much of it is the thin air (I'd love some home/away splits on him, if anyone knows where such a creature exists for AAA players). According the previously cited Ken Rosenthal article, the Rockies are only looking for one of a) potential everyday catcher b) late inning reliever or c) starting pitcher.

The Indians' offer of Josh Bard was rejected (well, duh). The Jays have the depth in pitching to offer something better than that. I know such a move probably wont pay dividends for a couple of seasons, but at least it would be power potential at first base. Then again, maybe his numbers would look more like John-Ford Griffin's if he were out of Colorado.

I wonder if an offer of (one of) Bush/Chacin/Chulk (maybe even Frasor?) could do the trick. Hmmm...
Dave Till - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 08:05 PM EST (#132870) #
Does Delgado have the right to demand a trade after 2006? He only played one year in Florida.

I think he'll receive a huge, monstrous ovation on his return to Toronto. The Jays weren't really interested in re-signing him - the right deal would have landed him again.

My gut feeling (which is often wrong) tells me that the Jays have the inside track on Ryan. Most of the contending and/or rich teams already have a closer. If he signs here, he'll immediately become The Man.

I don't think much will happen on the free agent front until the arbitration deadline. Teams want to wait and see if their targets are being non-tendered - then, they can save the draft picks.
Mike Forbes - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 08:05 PM EST (#132871) #
Brandon League for Ryan Shealy seems like a great gamble for both clubs if you ask me. League is a groundball pitcher when effective so that MIGHT help him in Coors.. While Shealy plays in some thin air in Colorado but there's no denying he has offensive potential.
TJ Caino - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 08:14 PM EST (#132872) #
I would take BJ over AJ for sure. BJ is a proven talent, whereas AJ is a gamble. We would have a lights out bullpen. AKA the GO train. Miggy and the Jets is so last summer.
HollywoodHartman - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 08:17 PM EST (#132873) #
The Cubs have signed Bobby Howry 3 years $12 Mil... So Thats arouns $11M spent on their pen already this offseason if I'm not mistaken...
Flex - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 08:20 PM EST (#132874) #
Dave -- this is from the SI piece on the Delgado trade:

"Because he is a veteran player traded during a multiyear contract, Delgado would have the right to file a trade demand during the 15 days following next year's World Series."

There you go.
Gerry - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 08:20 PM EST (#132875) #
From what I hear Shealy is a Brad Eldred type. BA lists him at 6'5" and 240 pounds, he's is not a good fielder, he might just about get by at first base. BA had him as the Rockies #14 prospect and predicted he would have a big year in 2005 in the thin air at Colorado Springs.

Shealy could be Brad Eldred or he could be Jack Cust.
Anders - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 08:51 PM EST (#132876) #
Apparently the ChiSox are relinquishing Daniel Haigwood and Gio Gonzalez as well. BA rates Gonzalez as the Sox #7 prospect. John Sickels rated Gonzalez as the Sox #2 prospect before the year, and then he went out and went 13-6 with a 2.82 era in 131 innings, 97 hits, 163/47 k/bb and only 8 hr's between the Sally and Carolina leagues. And he's 19.

In AA, Haigwood went 6-1, 1.74 era, 67 ip. 39 hits, 76/31 k/bb and 0! hr. He's 21.

All of a sudden, this trade looks a little less good for the Champs
Mike Green - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 08:55 PM EST (#132877) #
Here are the statistics for Shealy's 2005 Sky Sox. Note the very pretty numbers of old friend Tom Wilson.
ScottTS - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 09:03 PM EST (#132878) #
Until someone asks Ricciardi directly if he went after Beckett and Ricciardi answers that he didn't, we really have nothing to tell us that he didn't.

I'm guessing that any deals for Beckett were contingent upon somebody taking on Lowell's contract as well; Boston can afford to do that, most other team's can't. The Jay's certainly can't.

greenfrog - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 09:13 PM EST (#132879) #
One thing to remember is that the Jays don't have to be a championship team in April. We simply have to be in a position to win in midseason (the A's have perfected this strategy over the years--well, almost perfected, since they fell short last year). If we can acquire even one top-tier player this off-season, we're moving in the right direction.

Flash Gordon is an interesting plan B for the 'pen. He's still pitching extremely well, although his K/IP fell off a bit last year, which is a bit troubling when you're 38. I wouldn't mind the Jays' signing him to a two-year deal, but anything longer would be pretty high-risk.
R Billie - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 09:15 PM EST (#132880) #
I don't think the combined salaries of Beckett and Lowell would greatly exceed the types of figures being bandied about Burnett. A minimum of five years...a minimum of $10 million per year. Rumours of up to $13 million a year.

For Beckett you're looking at an award of maybe $5 million in his second go around in arbitration. Depending on the kind of year he has he can make $7 to $10 million the next year, assuming he's at least competent.

So that's maybe around $14 or $15 million for Beckett and Lowell combined in 2006 and around $16 to $19 million combined in 2007. Assuming you're not able to dump Lowell's contract on someone else.

That's a higher investment but you have two assets, one a very good one. You also have a much shorter commitment, just two years instead of 5. Or more! Is the three extra years of risk worth the savings of $5 million or so each of the next two years? And not giving up prospects?

I'd say it's a close call. Certainly for JP to dismiss being interested in Beckett at all, even with a two year commitment to Lowell in two, does not seem overly thought out. Given the level of overspending and long term commitment the Jays seem poised to make on the free agent market, possibly with both Burnett and Ryan.
Ron - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 09:28 PM EST (#132881) #
"I'm guessing that any deals for Beckett were contingent upon somebody taking on Lowell's contract as well; Boston can afford to do that, most other team's can't. The Jay's certainly can't. "

I disagree with anybody that says the Jays couldn't afford to take on Lowell's contract. I believe Lowell is set to make about 8-9 mil next season and something close to that after next season.

The Jays have around 20-25 mil to spend on players. Beckett + Lowell don't even combine to make close to 20-25 mil next season. And that's not even taking into consideration the Jays might be trading away players on their current big league roster in return for those 2 players.

Not being able to afford Lowell's contract and not willing to take on his contract are seperate issues.


John Northey - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 09:55 PM EST (#132883) #
Ryan Shealy is interesting. Like Howard he is trapped in AAA. Baseball Prospectus (in their free section) had a bit about him mid-season - http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=4409

Basically at every level he has been in the 400/600 region (a bit lower, but close). His EQA last year was 298 in the majors over 91 AB's (330/413/473). However, he is 26 already thus might be good but probably will only be solid for a couple of years. A good stopgap but not worth giving up high level talent. I wonder what the Rox would want?
Mike Green - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 10:01 PM EST (#132884) #
John Sickels will be reviewing the progress of the top 20 pre-season Jay prospects in 2005 in minorleagueball.com on Sunday. I am sure that it will be well worth a careful read.
Hartley - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 11:01 PM EST (#132886) #
Hearing the news that the Florida Marlins are looking for a new home. I have a suggestion what about Montreal. The stadium is indoors and a roof that retract.

Dave Van Horne would be back broadcasting in Montreal.

2008 Montreal Marlins! or 2008 Montreal Expos
Named For Hank - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 11:08 PM EST (#132887) #
If any team moves to Canada it should be called the Rough Riders, because I don't like living in a country where only one team is called the Rough Riders.
Lefty - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 11:08 PM EST (#132888) #
Looks like Pierre is on the next bus outta town.

Source: rotoworld.com


WSCR 670 in Chicago is reporting that the Cubs are close to acquiring Juan Pierre from the Marlins for three prospects.
One would be left-hander Renyel Pinto. According to the report, center fielder Felix Pie wouldn't be involved. Another expendable reliever probably would be. Roberto Novoa or Jermaine Van Buren could help the Marlins
VBF - Wednesday, November 23 2005 @ 11:13 PM EST (#132889) #
mmmmm....pie.




Sorry, but someone had to do it.
Anders - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 01:40 AM EST (#132891) #
If any team moves to Canada it should be called the Rough Riders, because I don't like living in a country where only one team is called the Rough Riders.

I propose they play off of the new Washington name. I think the Montreal Nationalist's sounds good.

jmoney - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 08:57 AM EST (#132897) #
Holy Guacamole!

J.P. might have the dough to offer, but apparently we have to offer the years to go with it.

In addition to the rumoured 5 year deal for Burnett. The Post is speculating that the Yankees are out of the Ryan bidding, because the Jays and Yankees offered five year deals.

And here I thought Ryan said he didn't want to play for the yankees.

http://www.nypost.com/sports/yankees/58242.htm
Marc Hulet - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 09:43 AM EST (#132899) #
I really, really have never been a fan of how Kenny handles prospects and it was ridiculous of him to give up Chicago's (arguably) two best pitching prospects and Aaron Rowand for Thome and cash. The White Sox are going to regret this move, even if only one of these two pitchers reach their potential. I mean, no one else really wanted Thome. Shrewed move by Gillick.
Maldoff - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 09:56 AM EST (#132900) #
To clarify what jmoney said, it was the Jays and Indians offering 5 years for Ryan. Two comments on this:

1) If Ryan didn't want to go to the Yankees because he wanted to close, why is he looking at Cleveland, who already have Bob Wickman, a solid closer himself?
2) In the article, the author mentions that the Yankees dropped out because they didn't want to offer 5 years. New York spin is great, huh?
MatO - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 10:12 AM EST (#132902) #
Isn't Wickman a FA also?

The Red Sox should be wary of trading for Beckett as it would violate the Sirotka rule: Never trade for a pitcher that finished the previous season with "minor" arm problems.
H Winfield Teut - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 10:15 AM EST (#132903) #
In regards to Shealy, I live out here in Co, happy thanksgiving to those of us south, happy 11-24 to those north. Anyway...This is Dan O'Dowd we would be dealing with, show him a bright new toy with colors and he would trade his mother. The local fans, and press have very little guard for his skills as a gm, and even less for the mentality of the Monfort Brothers the owners. Throw him Batista and a spare part and that should cover Shealy.
Joseph Krengel - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 11:15 AM EST (#132906) #
I'm not sure why everyone is operating on the assumption that Beckett is making chump-change. ESPN has his salary for this past year at $2.3 mil and he's expected to make between $4-5 mil in arbitration. Another strong year and he could probably get between $6-8 million in 2007.

That means a commitment of $13-14 million this year and $15-17 million per year with Lowell's contract. And if J.P. were to give that much per year to Burnett I'd eat my hat... if some bird hadn't crapped on it.
Jim - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 11:24 AM EST (#132908) #
'That means a commitment of $13-14 million this year and $15-17 million per year with Lowell's contract'

Boston also gave up at least 2 very good prospects, the Jays do not have a single position player in the minor leagues that would rate with Ramirez. I'm personally not that high on him, and he's still head and shoulders above every position player in the Jays system.

I like Beckett better then Burnett, but it's clearly a better move to sign AJ then it is to trade for Beckett and Lowell.

As for the Thome deal, Philadelphia did an amazing job bringing back what they did with what little leverage they had. I guess it wasn't 'Stand Pat' in this instance - a brilliant move for him from where I sit.
DepecheJay - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 11:52 AM EST (#132909) #
Yup Marc, the White Sox are surely going to regret this one...

Just like they probably regret trading Carlos Lee for Scott Podsednik. One of the worst trades of the year, no wait, the past 10 years! What were they thinking?!

All smug sarcasm aside, Kenny Williams is truly a gambler, and I commend him for that. You just gotta love a guy who's willing to take chances. If they re-sign Konerko, OH MAN that's a nasty 3-4 or 4-5.
DepecheJay - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 11:57 AM EST (#132910) #
Come on Jays, make a move! Overspend a little, give out some crazy contracts with 5 years on em, just make a move. This team needs to make a BIG splash this off-season and hopefully the slew of recent moves will tip JP's hand.

You must realize that the Jays HAVE TO overpay to get these marquee FA's. If they don't overpay, guys aren't going to come here, it's that simple. And they must keep jacking the price up because guys are STILL reluctant to play in Toronto because of their stupid wives and such.
MatO - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 12:10 PM EST (#132911) #
Ramirez is head and shoulders above Lind, Thigpen, Roberts, Cosby and Cannon. I don't think so.
binnister - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 12:14 PM EST (#132912) #
Re: Thome trade --- last comment (I promise!)

The inclusion of prospects in this deal certainly tilts the deal in Phillies direction...long term.

However, IF Thome is able to produce 1.5-2 seasons of Thome-esque type production, then I think it will be only the historians who look back the career RC (or something similiar) and put it on a list of 'Worst Trades' (or something similar).

In the meantime it's quite possible that, over the next 3 years, the Sox will be in the post-season and even win another Championship.
John Northey - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 12:24 PM EST (#132914) #
Urk. 5 year contract for a closer? 5 years for a starter too? $10 mil per for each? Oy vey. It isn't my money, but I do fear what we'll see in 3 or 4 years. Still, boy would it be nice for next year.
Mike Green - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 12:47 PM EST (#132916) #
Hanley Ramirez vs. Adam Lind. Hmm. At age 20-21, Ramirez has hit .280 with medium range pop and average strike zone judgment in the Eastern League. Ramirez has not yet turned 22. Lind turned 22 this past July and hit .310 with medium range pop and average strike zone judgment in the FSL. Ramirez has much better speed than Lind. While the quality of Ramirez' defence has been questioned to some degree, he is a shortstop and Lind is an average at best defensive leftfielder. If one is looking at performance and tools, I think Ramirez has a substantial edge.

But, the X factor is motivation/discipline. In Ramirez' case, it has been questioned. Not so in Lind's. I have no idea how much weight to attach to the X factor. That's why these judgments are so difficult.
MatO - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 12:54 PM EST (#132917) #
JP was on the FAN last night(I guess on RSN too) and he pretty well confirmed that if it takes 5 years to sign a pitcher they want then they'll do it, even though he brought up the Halladay contract himself as an example of a deal that hasn't really worked out the first 2 years.

On a side note, JP did the interview from a hockey arena where one of his son's was having a practice. It seems that his boys have caught the hockey bug while spending time in Canada, much to the obvious dismay of JP who's a baseball/basketball guy.
MatO - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 01:04 PM EST (#132918) #
I don't think it's a stretch to think that Lind would have put up numbers at least as good as Ramirez's at AA which weren't that great to begin with. There's not a big age difference between them. Sure Ramirez has better tools but I just don't see him as being a way better prospect.
jmoney - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 01:10 PM EST (#132919) #
Probably not the kind of free agent market J.P. was hoping to spend money in.

It's not my money, but if they sign Ryan for 8-10 million per season, that's quite a chunk of change to be giving to a guy that gives you 70-80ip a year.

Then again its just money, its not costing the jays talent to boot.

I don't envy J.P. He basically has to spend this money, but the same fans that want him to make moves; will burn him at the stake if these long term deals don't work out.
Cristian - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 01:28 PM EST (#132922) #
An issue that few around these parts have mentioned is the new substance abuse rules and their relative effects on pitchers vs. hitters. Assuming that more hitters than pitchers routinely abuse steroids/amphetamines, isn't it wiser to shell out money for pitchers rather than hitters? Now I know my assumption may not be right. But assume for a minute that hitters routinely taken greenies to catch up to top notch fastballs. Isn't JP better off going after the likes of BJ and AJ? Going after a free agent hitter may not be such a good thing because, coming from a different organization, the Jays will not know how much of the hitter's advantage came from banned substances.

In short, this year at least, isn't it smarter to go after pitching?
Jordan - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 01:33 PM EST (#132923) #
Ramirez's profile made me look at him in comparison to another couple of Jays' youngsters, Alex Rios and Miguel Negron:
Negron 21: A-Ball
372 AB, .269/.341/.411, 38/81 BB/K
Rios 21: A-Ball
456 AB, .305/.344/.408, 27/55 BB/K
Ramirez 21: Double-A
594 AB, .280/.345/.430, 49/88 BB/K (approx.) 
About a quarter of Ramirez's numbers were posted when he was an old 20. He's a full year ahead of both these players, and has better plate discipline than Negron, insofar as he strikes out less often. Rios' strikeout rates rose to 39/88 in 514 AB during his "breakout" age-22 season at Double-A, very similar to what Ramirez posted last year at 20-21. Rios has averaged a 30/90 BB/K rate in his two major-league seasons (455 AB).

So basically, if he makes no advances in development, I think Ramirez should be posting .275/.330/.400, 35/85 BB/K numbers at shortstop for Florida within a year, which is pretty much what Edgar Renteria gave the Red Sox last year. A little more OBP and he's Julio Lugo; a little less OBP and he's Juan Uribe. Lugo didn't debut till he was 24, while Uribe didn't contribute with the bat till he was that age too. And Ramirez has more tools and a better minor-league record than either of them. I'm prepared to re-evaulate my earlier opinion that Ramirez will be a bust. And if I was offered Ramirez straight up for Lind, even taking into account makeup issues, I would make that deal.

MatO - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 01:55 PM EST (#132925) #
I'm more of a "what have you done lately" when it comes to young players. Ramirez produced a line of .271 .335 .385 in a full season of AA in 2005. That projects to more of an Izturis type player. I'd probably do the Lind for Ramirez trade myself but I don't think I'd feel very confident doing it.
Craig B - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 02:04 PM EST (#132928) #
What Ramirez doesn't have is defense as good as Lugo or Uribe, who are two of the six or eight best defensive shortstops in baseball. Ramirez is quite good, certainly adequate for the majors, but nothing I've ever seen suggests he's at that level.

He's still a good prospect and indifferent offense notwithstanding, I'd rather have him than Adam Lind. Ramirez should be a consistent contributor at the MLB level based on his glove alone, which gives him a "floor" value that Lind doesn't have.
Mike Green - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 02:12 PM EST (#132930) #
Really, the worry with Ramirez is that his floor is the original Alex Gonzalez with a little less defence and a little less pop. After Alex's age 21 season in 1994 with Syracuse, he was a signficantly better prospect than Hanley Ramirez is now.
MatO - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 02:29 PM EST (#132934) #
AGon's age 21 year has always been a stunner for me. Here's a AAA SS who showed improved numbers across the board from his previous AA season. The kind of numbers that made you think that the Jays might have a star on their hands. And then he does not improve one iota from that point on. He was astoundingly consistent as a hitter with an OPS of around .700 year after year.
Named For Hank - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 04:13 PM EST (#132942) #
Jeff Blair was just on the radio. He said that he was getting conflicting information about B.J., but it was his overall impression that the chances of the Jays landing him are good.
jgadfly - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 04:22 PM EST (#132943) #
"It's the cost of doing business" ...5 yrs at $12 mil for Burnett...5 yrs at $10 mil for Ryan ...if you want them then that's the price as of today - Both have a very good upside "IF" ... they also free up Lilly/Bush/Bautista/Chacin and the usual assortment of pitching prospects for the bats... as of tomorrow it may take more... I'm just glad I'm not JP... damned if he does and damned even more so if he doesn't... the Yankees and the Sox won't make it any easier...you're up !!! put the bat on the ball ... Oh, and don't miss...
Jordan - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 04:23 PM EST (#132944) #
I wonder if signing Ryan might help tip the balance for Burnett -- i.e., showing AJ that the Blue Jays are serious about contending this year. It might help make the difference. But five years, as has been rumoured, is a steep price to pay.

You know, every off-season, there's one team that seems to suddenly generate a lot of momentum and buzz within baseball with a series of moves and signings. It's certainly possible for the Jays to be that team this winter.
Chuck - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 04:41 PM EST (#132945) #
Lying to get out of the draft? No. Lying to get in it.
Jordan - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 04:46 PM EST (#132946) #
Fun fact about BJ Ryan I uncovered while looking at his career numbers. He was originally a 17th-round draft choice of the Reds in 1998, but they traded him away to Baltimore in 1999, along with another prospect, for ... Juan Guzman.
actionjackson - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 05:35 PM EST (#132953) #
Ah Juan Guzman, Enigma #1 (or Juan). Enigma #2: Kelvim Escobar. Enigma #3: Miguel Batista. The Three Musketeers, or The Three Stooges? All had/have tremendous arms and tremendous stuff, and all reached a decent level of success, but given said stuff shouldn't they have been better? The guys Guzman was most similar to, that I saw (according to bb ref): Erik Hanson (yikes), Dennis Rasmussen, Steve Avery, Matt Clement, Rick Helling, Cal Eldred. For Escobar: Mark Leiter, Miguel Batista (hmmm), Ted Power. For Batista: Mark Leiter, Kelvim Escobar, Dave Weathers, Gene Nelson, Darren Dreifort, Ricky Bones. With their stuff, shouldn't they have eclipsed this group? Anyone? Bueller?
Magpie - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 05:48 PM EST (#132955) #
Guzman, Escobar, Batista

Ahh... beyond their mother tongue, I don't really think the three of them have that much in common.

Escobar is The Natural. He has the best raw material, filthy unhittable stuff, and he's a big strong guy. It took him a long time to put it together, but I blame that almost entirely on the Blue Jays changing his job description (and his pitching coach) every five minutes.

Guzman is the Scrapper. He had a great arm, but he just wasn't quite big enough and strong enough to stay healthy throwing as hard and as violently as he did. A physical breakdown always seemed inevitable, although it's quite possible that Guzman's tremendous work ethic put it off as long as possible. I regard him as someone who absolutely got the most out of what he had.

Batista is the Thinker. He's got a very good arm, if not quite what Escobar and Guzman had/have. He's much better built for the rigours of the job than Guzman. But stop thinking, Meat!

Anders - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 06:15 PM EST (#132958) #
Good news ho!

"An MRI showed that Roy Halladay's fractured left tibia is healing properly."
""He's not going to start running right away but everything is clean and healing properly and there is no reason for Roy to undergo any more MRIs," GM J.P. Ricciardi"

Rotoworld, from the Sun
greenfrog - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 06:42 PM EST (#132959) #
That's great news about Roy. Hard to believe, though, that he was throwing off a mound a month or so after the injury. What were they thinking?
VBF - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 06:56 PM EST (#132960) #
Want to be a scouting co-ordinator for the Jays?

http://toronto.bluejays.mlb.com/NASApp/mlb/mlb/help/jobs.jsp?c_id=tor

HollywoodHartman - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 07:16 PM EST (#132962) #
I bet theres more then 1 poster that could do a good job with that...
slitheringslider - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 09:45 PM EST (#132967) #
Does Jon Lalonde currently hold that position of Scouting Coordinator?
Anders - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 10:05 PM EST (#132968) #
Lalonde is the scouting director, IIRC.
Gerry - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 10:17 PM EST (#132969) #
I think Alex Anthopoulos who was recently promoted to half of Tim McLeary's old job, last held this position.
SK in NJ - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 11:21 PM EST (#132972) #
I'd probably be more inclined to give Ryan five years than Burnett, though I'd obviously prefer to give neither that many years. Ryan is a closer and he'll come cheaper, so he's likely going to be more of an asset. If Burnett is a 4.00 ERA starter, that's not going to be too marketable at $10-12 million per. Think Javier Vazquez.

Welcome back to free agency, Blue Jays. I've been so accustomed to seeing the Jays trying to save money that all these years and annual figures are more staggering than they probably should be. Considering most of JP's attention appears to be focused on the top starter on the market (Burnett), arguably the top closer on the market (Ryan), and one of the top hitters on the market (Giles), we shouldn't be shocked at how long the process is taking and how much money is being discussed. We're back in the big leagues! Let's just hope Ricciardi can snag one of them. I'm not too confident, but I hope I'm wrong.
danjulien - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 11:40 PM EST (#132973) #
<i>Welcome back to free agency, Blue Jays.</i>
I LOVE this statement, because it just perfectly represents the last two off-seasons but even more this one than the last. To me the weirdest thing I've read this off-season was the tidbit that the Yankees were scared off on Ryan because JP offered him 5 years...Rumour or not just for journalists to be writing this about the Blue Jays shows how far JP's plan has come along, and how great it is to have Uncle Ted increase the budget

Although it would be tough to snag all three of these free agents, JP will get something done...
TJ Caino - Thursday, November 24 2005 @ 11:53 PM EST (#132974) #
http://bluejays.scout.com/2/470906.html

I don't know if this has been mentioned. Jays pursuing Giles.

Great news. His OBP makes me feel funny inside in a good way.

Between him, AJ and Ryan. AJ is the one I'm least excited about. Giles and Ryan would be the ideal situation. Not likely however.
Newton - Friday, November 25 2005 @ 12:43 AM EST (#132975) #
Red Sox also got G. Mota in the Beckett deal.

After 2003 he was being ballyhooed as a tremendous closer in waiting. If healthy he could be a significant piece for the Sox.

Hartley - Friday, November 25 2005 @ 01:00 AM EST (#132977) #
I wonder if the Blue Jays would consider acquiring the following players.

1. Mike Piazza DH Catcher and First Baseman
2. Frank Thomas DH

They are both the same age 37. Maybe they have 1-3 years left of their careers. Attendance I think would increase seeing these potential Hall of Famers
R Billie - Friday, November 25 2005 @ 02:49 AM EST (#132979) #
I think clearly the Jays would love to sign all three premium guys (Burnett, Ryan, Giles). It would be tight without losing some projected payroll though.

By my calculations it would be possible if Burnett and Giles averaged $10 million each and Ryan came in at $7 million or less. That seems unlikely though. I think they'd have to move Batista, maybe even Shea. Or even eat half of Hinske's contract and trade him for an A-ball reliever.

The chances of all three agreeing on Toronto seem remote but one wonders if they'd be willing to be creative on their contracts to accomodate each other. Ok I couldn't type that with a straight face.
Toro54 - Friday, November 25 2005 @ 03:19 AM EST (#132980) #
I think Piazza is a terrible idea, for a number of reasons:

1) His bat has slowed down. And (ordinarily) not playing in the field certainly won't keep you as "sharp".

2) He could not help in the field. Enough said. First base? That would be atrocious. I thought we put those days behind us when Brad Fullmer claimed he could play first base to get involved in interleague play...

3) Piazza insists he can still play catcher. He simply cannot. He can't block balls in the dirt and he couldn't throw out Ace or Diamond stealing second (and you want him to throw out Baldelli, Crawford and Gathright?). Even worse, from his agent's statements it appears that the team that signs him will have to give him some sort of guarantee that he will play at least some catcher.

Thomas is more intriguing.

He is an injury risk, but the parts of seasons he has played indicates his numbers are still pretty strong. He would accept the DH role (unlike Piazza) and is already familiar with AL pitching.

All of this said, I don't really think either is a good idea. And the likelihood of Thomas coming to Toronto or Piazza only in a DH role is probably not that great (or worth the 4+ million per year).

Thoughts?

GeoffAtMac - Friday, November 25 2005 @ 07:19 AM EST (#132983) #

Piazza is definitely beyond the point where he can catch every day, but we still have to bring someone in to help Zaun.

I am not completely turned off by Piazza because his agent called the Jays, which suggests he thinks we are a competitve team. If he is willing to do 95% DH-ing and very little catching, than I might not be opposed.

I am not so hot on Frank Thomas though. He is a guy who could rake in T.O. like few others on the Blue Jays, but his ankle could finish him tomorrow -- which would really screw the Jays if it happened in May.

Leigh - Friday, November 25 2005 @ 08:17 AM EST (#132988) #
Just like they probably regret trading Carlos Lee for Scott Podsednik. One of the worst trades of the year, no wait, the past 10 years! What were they thinking?!

I know that you are being sarcastic here, but yes, it was a terrible trade.

Let's say that you and I are playing a dice game. We roll a die, and if it comes up 1, 2 or 3, you win; if it comes up 4, 5 or 6, I win. Before the game starts, you say "wow, I really like your bright shiny 4, I'll trade you 1 and 2 for it!" So I take the trade, and I now hold 1, 2, 5 and 6 to your 3 and 4, giving me a 67% chance of winning to your 33%. The die is rolled and behold: it lands on 4. You win. But that doesn't mean that you made a smart trade!

danjulien - Friday, November 25 2005 @ 08:29 AM EST (#132989) #
Apparently the Jays are interested in Overbay and JP balked at the initial offer of McGowan for Overbay...interesting...
CeeBee - Friday, November 25 2005 @ 08:46 AM EST (#132992) #
I'd balk too, considering Overbay only had 4 homers more than Hinske. Isn't a bit more power what we need from our first baseman?
Craig B - Friday, November 25 2005 @ 08:53 AM EST (#132993) #
I'll just have to disagree with you, Leigh - I think the White Sox won that deal by a healthy margin, for four reasons : Podsednik doesn't make nearly what Carlos Lee does, he plays much better defense, he's a longer-term asset than Lee, and he was exactly what the White Sox needed on offense - a genuine leadoff hitter.

Podsednik made $700,000 last year and will make $1.9 million this year. Lee made $8,000,000 in 2005 and had an option for $8,500,000 in 2006, or a $500K buyout. That option turned out to be decent value and it was exercised, but while Podsednik will has two further years at bargain values (thanks to being arbitration-eligible) Lee will be a free agent after this season and will command top dollar.

Podsednik's a genuine centerfielder who was simply outstanding in left, while Lee was distinctly below average. The White Sox, who were building their team around pitching and defense, saw the value that Podsednik could add with the glove.

Finally, the White Sox are full of low-OBP, high-power hitters (Uribe, Crede, Dye, Everett, Pierzynski, even Konerko to some degree). That's what Carlos Lee is - he doesn't get on base but he drives in runs. Well, one more guy like that does the White Sox no good at all - they needed tablesetters. This is because the net effect of a point of OBP on a SLG-heavy team is much, much higher than a similar weight of SLG. You *have* to have a balance. Hence the decisions to get Iguchi and Podsednik, which worked out brilliantly.

Podsednik's .351 OBP doesn't look all that terrific, but it's pretty good for a guy who hits only leadoff (because with leadoff hitters, pitchers alter their strategy to try to keep them off base, so guys typically have a somewhat lower OBP when hitting in the top slot) and anyway, it led the White Sox outside Konerko. His stolen bases are also useful in the top spot (they'd be more useful if Ozzie would run him 25% less, mind you). So his offensive contributions have more synergy with the White Sox offense than Lee's.

(Incidentally, the plan to acquire Thome is similar - Kenny realizes that the White Sox still need power but also guys who can walk to first base, to help the guys lower in the order like Rowand, Crede and Uribe drive in more runs. Pretty smart guy, that Kenny.)

Add it all up and Podsednik delivered 12 win shares, 2 "above bench", for $700,000, while Lee delivered 24 win shares, 11 "above bench", for $8,000,000. VORP more your speed? Lee delivered 34.3 VORP, Podsednik 13.6 - for more than 11 times less money. How about WARP (that's my personal favorite)? I find that WARP brings out the defensive difference - and while Lee's WARP1 was 4.1, Podsednik's was 3.7.

None of this is to say that the Brewers didn't win the deal too - they probably did, as this one resembles a classic win-win. Unlike the White Sox, the Brewers needed power and they got it. It's very, very hard to argue with 114 RBI.

Kenny won his deal, the White Sox won the World Series, and all the dice rolls in the world won't change it. And yeah, I am surprised too.
Leigh - Friday, November 25 2005 @ 09:23 AM EST (#132995) #
Ouch. Why do I feel like Burley just walked into my office, smacked me on the back of the head, and said, "smarten up, jackass!"?

Podsedniks WARP1 went from 2.5 in 2004 to 3.7 in 2005; Lee's went from 7.4 to 4.1. For argument's sake, I'm willing to say that the contextual factors (lineup construction, etc.) noted in your post make up for the 0.4 gap between them in 2005, bringing Podsednik up to Lee's level. So even as they in fact did perform, it's a wash. Williams gambled that Lee would recede to his pre-2004 level (he did) and that Podsednik revert to his lofty 2003 (he didn't).

Yeah, Podsednik was cheaper and almost as good as Lee in 2005, but why focus on the outcomes?
Mike Green - Friday, November 25 2005 @ 09:25 AM EST (#132996) #
Williams' moves are very interesting, and defensive evaluation plays a large role in it. My own view is that Rowand is a superior defensive centerfielder, probably the best in the game right now, and that Podsednik is maybe a smidge above average in center (and superior in left). Trading Rowand, moving Podsednik to center and creating an opportunity for the rook in left is a gutty move for a manager coming off a championship season built on pitching and defence. It's messing with the core of the team when it was not obviously necessary. There are lots of ways to win though and Williams obviously thinks that he has a better chance of sustaining it by shifting gears to a more offensive-minded club in today's market. I'd call that Moneyball thinking.:)
SK in NJ - Friday, November 25 2005 @ 09:27 AM EST (#132997) #
"Apparently the Jays are interested in Overbay and JP balked at the initial offer of McGowan for Overbay...interesting..."

Isn't Gord Ash the assistant GM of the Brewers? If so, I'm not surprised they asked for McGowan. My gut tells me Brandon League is going to be involved should a trade for Overbay take place, but I have no clue what exactly Milwaukee is looking for. Obviously, asking for the opposing team's top prospect as a starting point is not surprising, but it's what they might settle on that's hard to gauge.

Mota to Boston? Good on the surface (for Boston), but his numbers as a Dodger and his numbers with every other team he's pitched for are like night and day. At $3+ million, he's not cheap either. But still a good deal for Boston.
Craig B - Friday, November 25 2005 @ 09:40 AM EST (#132999) #
Ouch. Why do I feel like Burley just walked into my office, smacked me on the back of the head, and said, "smarten up, jackass!"?

You gotta admit, it's a lot better than me walking into your office, closing the door, and then slowly removing... uh, I'll stop there.

Seriously, you're right. I did that whole thing in outcome terms and that's not necessarily an appropriate analysis. I still think that if you separate out the hitting part, the other advantages of Podsednik still apply (and Pod's 2004 was genuinely awful, I suspect KW thought he was just better than that).

Ultimately, I think you have to focus on outcomes to assess "smart vs stupid" deals. Maybe only on aggregate though, not over a single transaction.

Like I said, I think both teams won that trade.

greenfrog - Friday, November 25 2005 @ 09:44 AM EST (#133000) #
Overbay could be a nice pickup. He's young, relatively cheap, and has consistently hit for a high OPS in the minors and majors, although his numbers fell off slightly last year (despite cutting down his strikeouts). He's apparently a decent defender too. If you acquire him, though, you've got to deal Hinske or maybe Koskie. Too many 1B/DH/3B types on the roster.
Jordan - Friday, November 25 2005 @ 09:46 AM EST (#133002) #
We roll a die, and if it comes up 1, 2 or 3, you win; if it comes up 4, 5 or 6, I win

And suddenly I've flashed back to my Strat-O-Matic days.

a gutty move for a manager coming off a championship season built on pitching and defence. It's messing with the core of the team when it was not obviously necessary.

Not entirely unlike the 1992-93 Blue Jays?

Apparently the Jays are interested in Overbay and JP balked at the initial offer of McGowan for Overbay

Unsurprising. .275/.350/.450 is nice and all, but it's not much different from what a Bill Mueller or a Shea Hillenbrand will give you. By both OPS and RC, Overbay was about the 14th-best first baseman in baseball last year, utterly average. I don't think that's worth an arm like McGowan's.

Named For Hank - Friday, November 25 2005 @ 10:58 AM EST (#133004) #
Hard to believe, though, that he was throwing off a mound a month or so after the injury. What were they thinking?

The injury did not have to be fully healed for Roy to pitch with the team. And there really was nothing he could do to make it worse aside from getting hit there with another pitch. With the team out of the race, though, there was no reason for Roy to pitch until the leg had fully healed.

There's a huge difference between what's considered "healthy enough to play" and "healed".
Rich - Friday, November 25 2005 @ 11:02 AM EST (#133005) #
Overbay is an upgrade over Hinske, but a corner outfielder is a much bigger priority in my opinion.
Nick - Friday, November 25 2005 @ 11:03 AM EST (#133006) #
I hope the article posted above which indicated that the Jays are right in the thick of the Giles hunt proves correct. In my opinion, a Giles-for-Rios upgrade in the lineup is the single best move JP could make to improve the club this offseason - by a lot. I think JP is probably following the most logical plan in terms of his free agent pursuit - go after all 3 targets (AJ, BJ, Giles) as aggressively as possible and if you miraculoulsly get all 3, worry about that later. That scenario is the least of JP's worries. He has players (Batista, SS LOOGY) who he would be able to trade and shave salary and not hurt the club too much. I think SS was valuable last year, but in the scenario, the Jays have BJ, so ridding SS and his ~$3M salary isn't the end of the world. I wouldn't trade Hillenbrand unless the Jays could find comparable production at a reduced price.

One of my principal concerns about the BJ and Giles pursuit is that it appears that Cleveland is one of the primary competitors for these players. If Cleveland is willing to match Toronto dollar-for-dollar, it might be difficult to convince those guys to choose Toronto over Cleveland. The Indians are widely viewed as an up-and-coming team and almost came back to catch the eventual World Champs. Toronto and Cleveland are similar type clubs in terms of payroll and the way they'd like to build their club and even in the same stage of that development. The problem for the Jays is that Cleveland is a better team right now and might prove more attractive to free agents. Of course, this is all speculation - we have little idea what is actually happening right now, and no idea of what will happen.
Flex - Friday, November 25 2005 @ 12:08 PM EST (#133011) #
Since Ricciardi has already stated that Hillenbrand will play the majority of first base next year, I'm not sure what purpose Overbay would serve, unless he imagined shifting him to left field or something.
Mike Green - Friday, November 25 2005 @ 12:18 PM EST (#133013) #
BP's WARP1 has Overbay at 7.0 and 6.4 the last 2 years, while Hillenbrand is at 4.2 and 3.5. Three wins is a big deal. Much of the difference, though, is with the glove, and measuring the defensive efficiency of first basemen is certainly less precise than measuring offensive efficiency. Even if the figure is 1 to 1.5 wins, that is more than the difference between Josh Towers and A.J. Burnett.
huckamaniac - Friday, November 25 2005 @ 02:46 PM EST (#133023) #
According to si.com's truth and rumour page, The Providence Journal is reporting that the Red Sox are offering Clement for Overbay.
http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2005/scorecard/11/25/truth.rumors.mlb/index.html
Craig B - Friday, November 25 2005 @ 03:18 PM EST (#133026) #
Go Red Sox! Clement for Overbay, that's the kind of deal you need! Don't forget to use the savings to bring back Johnny Damon, please...
Jim - Friday, November 25 2005 @ 05:14 PM EST (#133037) #
'Ramirez is head and shoulders above Lind, Thigpen, Roberts, Cosby and Cannon. I don't think so.'

Ok. This is just plain crazy. Roberts and Cosby, I mean seriously come on.
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