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As the AJ signing thread is getting long here is a place to focus discussion for non-AJ moves, whether they are Jays-related rumours or trades and transactions involving other teams.

Today JP wakes up with Burnett off his mind and finding a bat is likely his only focus. It may be too much to expect any move today, but JP is prone to striking quickly.
Winter Meetings: Day 3 | 248 comments | Create New Account
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Thomas - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 01:16 AM EST (#134913) #
A rumour to start you all off: the Jays and Brewers are discussing Lyle Overbay with the Jays potentially offering Dave Bush, according to a report out of Milwaukee
Cristian - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 01:22 AM EST (#134914) #
On the Score a haggard Jeff Blair mentioned that the Jays have met with Mike Piazza's agent. I hope the Globe and Mail gives Jeff some time off after the winter meetings.
MattAtBat - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 02:19 AM EST (#134918) #
Go out and get Nomar, Overbay and Piazza.

Now THAT will be an offseason.
zaptom - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 02:39 AM EST (#134919) #
Milton Bradley sounds an awful lot like an convoluted version of Rios with a bit more pop in his bat. I wouldn't deal for him considering the upside Rios has.
MattAtBat - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 02:45 AM EST (#134920) #
" The most interesting perk in A.J. Burnett's contract, according to a source with knowledge of the deal: Burnett's wife, Karen, is entitled to eight round-trip limousine trips per season between Toronto and her home in Bowie, Md. Karen Burnett does not like to fly. More significantly, Burnett has the right to opt out of his five-year, $55 million deal after three years, a clause that drew immediate scorn from rival executives. "On the off-chance that he's not overpaid, he can leave," one exec said sarcastically. "Fantastic."

- The Blue Jays wasted no time resuming their search for offense after announcing the Burnett contract, meeting with Arn Tellem, the representative for free-agent infielder Nomar Garciaparra. Lyle Overbay is being discussed as a possibility at first for the Blue Jays. One option for the Jays would be to sign Garciaparra as a DH and acquire the Brewers' Lyle Overbay to play first base, but those moves might be difficult to swing unless they traded Shea Hillenbrand along with either Eric Hinske or Corey Koskie."

This all from Ken Rosenthal's article: http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/story/5146662

JustinD - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 03:15 AM EST (#134923) #
The Marlins continue the fire sale trading Juan Pierre to the Cubs for three pitchers. Sergio Mitre and prospects Renyel Pinto and Ricky Nolasco. Link:
http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=2250647

The Cubs had met with Bradley
http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=2250487

So if we are after ol Milton this is good news for us getting him. If getting Bradley is good news is another story.

On another note, one reason for me to be happy about the Burnett signing, I have a bobblehead of him as a Marlin.
Smithers - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 04:07 AM EST (#134924) #
Does anyone else feel that the bad karma that has been following this franchise around for the past couple seasons is about to shift polar opposites? In 2004 (T.S.F.H. as it shall forever be known) with the rash of injuries to the untimely passing of John Cerutti on the final day of the season, and 2005 (We miss you Tom! and damn you Kevin Mench!) it seemed like a dark cloud was surrounding this franchise. This offseason, today especially, it appears that things are finally coming up aces for JP and the entire Jays family, and that we're in for a run of good luck for a change.

From landing 2/3 top-tier free agents that had been targeted (arguably the best starter and best reliever available on the open market and neither player yet 30) and coming in second for Giles... seeing Tom Cheek make the Frick ballot... JP landing an extension of his own... and now, new rumours circulating that a few low-cost high-reward bats are on the radar (Nomah the Lifeguard and Piazza, not to mention Overbay or Thomas)...

Colour me excited!

The most satisfying part of all this is seeing the amount of press the Jays have received this offseason from the American media. It seems as if they (Fox, ESPN) can't stand having the Jays get all uppity and (the nerve!) think that they can compete with the mighty Red Sox and Yankees. So they go on and rip on the deals, without looking at it from a Blue Jay perspective, that the massive contracts are a necessity to lure players of this caliber to Toronto and neither is really far off market value. Sure there is risk, but there is also potentially great reward! And more importantly, hope. Something that has been sadly missing around these parts for far too long.

I'm calling it now: Your 2006 Toronto Blue Jays, the AL's most-improved team. And why not - Tom Cheek inducted into the Hall of Fame as the cherry on top of it all.
Andrew K - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 05:00 AM EST (#134926) #
Goodness, I thought that people were joking when they said that Florida were looking for a payroll consisting entirely of players at the minimum.

Apart from Ron Villone (who is making $2M in 2006) and some players under control who deserve a bit of a raise (e.g. Willis), and assuming that they let their free agents go, who do they have who would get more than the minimum now? I can't think of anyone else!
King Ryan - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 05:23 AM EST (#134928) #
I can't think of any adjectives to describe what Florida is doing. I mean, looking at this page:

C   Paul Lo Duca -- GONE
1B *Carlos Delgado -- GONE
2B #Luis Castillo -- GONE
3B  Mike Lowell  -- GONE
SS  Alex Gonzalez  -- GONE
LF  Miguel Cabrera   -- safe
CF *Juan Pierre     -- GONE
RF  Juan Encarnacion -- GONE
DH  Jeff Conine -- might stay

SP *Dontrelle Willis -- safe
SP  A.J. Burnett  -- GONE
SP  Josh Beckett  -- GONE
SP  Brian Moehler  -- dunno    
SP *Jason Vargas    -- safe, I guess

CL  Todd Jones  -- GONE     
RP  Guillermo Mota  -- GONE
RP  Jim Mecir    -- GONE
RP  Antonio Alfonseca -- might stay
RP  Nate Bump    -- dunno

That's 7 of 9 regulars gone with one player on the fence, 2 of your top starters, and your top three relievers by appearances. And the offseason is still young. My God. How would you like to be Miguel Cabrera? Actually, don't answer that ... you know what I mean.

Andrew K - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 05:53 AM EST (#134932) #
I gather that Florida has declined Alfonseca's option, so if he stays it will be at a lower salary than the option of $2.75M. Even if both Alfonseca and Conine stay, their opening-day salary could be less than $15M. It's like watching a train wreck.

If I were Cabrera I'd be asking them to trade me to some team which cares about 06 and 07. Mind you, with all the prospects coming back the other way it's not inconceivable that Florida will be a good team in the future.
Terran - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 06:31 AM EST (#134933) #
I actually like the Florida Marlins. I mean, they'll be lucky to win 70 games next year, but they're going to easily have the youngest team in baseball. If they just hold onto everything they got now they could have a great dynasty.


Anyways, I have a question: An ESPN Insider article

I don't have ESPN Insider but the part that interests me is in the teaser:
"The Jays ranked fifth in the league with 775 runs scored last year, but they were 10th in slugging percentage and 11th in homers despite playing in a park where the ball flies."

I'm confused. If we ranked 5th in the AL with in terms of runs scored why should we care how many of those runs came in via the home run? I'm not saying that we shouldn't be now trying to get a bat, I'm just wondering, if we scored the 5th most runs in the AL, why do people insist our offense as it stands sucks?
Useless Tyler - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 07:06 AM EST (#134934) #
Lyle Overbay - a much-needed bat AND another player you can shout a prolonged "O" at? Sounds delicious.
Jim - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 07:27 AM EST (#134935) #
If they can get Overbay for just Bush that is a tremendous deal.
MulRedux - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 07:28 AM EST (#134936) #
If we ranked 5th in the AL with in terms of runs scored why should we care how many of those runs came in via the home run?

I don't think that's specifically the correlation Crasnick (and others) are trying to draw. I think the concern is simply that the Jays were lucky to find themselves with the 5th most runs in the AL and that the same lineup in 2006 would be unlikely to produce as many runs.

Also, for what it's worth, the Crasnick article mentions the Jays are looking at Kearns (again).
Jevant - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 07:38 AM EST (#134938) #
I have a hard time believing that Doug Melvin (who originally asked for McGowan), would suddenly accept Bush instead for Overbay, straight up.

However, I do like Overbay. If it takes Bush plus a prospect, JP should absolutely make that trade.

I can't believe I'm saying this, but we actually have pitching to spare now.
Anders - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 08:01 AM EST (#134939) #
The Crasnick article is really neither here nor there - just repeating some trade conjecture, a quote from Gibbons about how the Jays need a middle of the order bat, a bunch of stuff from Will Carroll about pitcher injuries, and disdain from another exec, who thinks paying Carlos Beltran big money makes more sense than paying B.J. Ryan medium sized money.
Terran - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 08:01 AM EST (#134940) #
I think the concern is simply that the Jays were lucky to find themselves with the 5th most runs in the AL and that the same lineup in 2006 would be unlikely to produce as many runs.

While that is a valid concern. The team had a few amazing stat padding games and lost tons of one-run games, but largely the concept that we lack offense is somewhat misleading. For example we were 9th in AVG last year, but 4th in on-base percentage. We were 10th in SLG% but we were 5th in doubles and 3rd in triples. We were "best" at getting hit by the pitch, and our worst regular had a .306 OBP (Rios). We didn't have power, and that's always nice and fun to have, but I don't think we necessarily got lucky last year, I think we have other means of being productive and with a relatively young offense that should be built on in 2006.

Also, for what it's worth, the Crasnick article mentions the Jays are looking at Kearns (again).

That's unlikely to happen though. Now that Sean Casey's been traded to Pittsburgh (pending a physhical) and thus Dunn can be moved to first base, the Reds don't have as much motivation to trade away one of their OFs.
Thaskins - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 08:12 AM EST (#134942) #
Is it just me or does anyone else not really see the point in bringing in Lyle Overbay? Is he really all that different from what we have now with either Hinske or Hillenbrand? I mean, in a vacuum, Id probably take Overbay over either player but I dont think the difference is enough where wed want to give up much. Im not a GM or anything but Id much rather make a deal where were giving up Bush and League and another young player for a bigger improvement than Overbay. If Overbay regresses just a little or if Hinske improves just a little, dont we have the same player?
Terran - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 08:20 AM EST (#134943) #
Is it just me or does anyone else not really see the point in bringing in Lyle Overbay? Is he really all that different from what we have now with either Hinske or Hillenbrand? I mean, in a vacuum, Id probably take Overbay over either player but I dont think the difference is enough where wed want to give up much. Im not a GM or anything but Id much rather make a deal where were giving up Bush and League and another young player for a bigger improvement than Overbay. If Overbay regresses just a little or if Hinske improves just a little, dont we have the same player?

I think part of the problem is that we can't really afford a big player. I mean, we could make a run for Manny or Abreu, but we can't afford them even if we got them, so we're limited by that. But yah, Overbay isn't exactly a top notch power hitter or anything. He's got a career OBP of .373 though which is nearly .040 higher then Hinske's.
GeoffAtMac - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 08:22 AM EST (#134944) #
Maybe a guy who is of talent level in-between say a Manny/Abreu versus an Overbay?
Terran - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 08:36 AM EST (#134946) #
Maybe a guy who is of talent level in-between say a Manny/Abreu versus an Overbay?

The other guy that seems to be rumored to be going to the Jays a lot is Kevin Mench who naturally would be able to play in right or left field. He's got more power then Overbay (which seems to be pretty evenly divided between home games and road games, so playing in Arlington doesn't seem to have skewed him) but doesn't hit for contact particularly well.
timpinder - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 08:54 AM EST (#134948) #
The trade rumor I just read on ESPN Insider was that the Jays and Brewers were talking about Bush AND Hillenbrand for Overbay.

Player vs. player, I would NOT make that trade, since Bush is a valuable starter and Overbay's numbers are only slightly better than Hillenbrand's.

However, it sounds more like a salary dump of sorts, since Hillenbrand makes about $5 million and is arbitration eligable and Overbay makes about $500,000. Please correct me if I'm wrong. (Is Overbay arbitration eligable this year?)

If it is a salary dump, I'd make the trade if it cleared money to bring in a big bat.

What about Koskie to the Twins? If the rumors were true and they wanted Lowell with his huge contract, why not Koskie, who makes half the money and likes Minnesota? With Koskie, Hillenbrand and Batista gone (assuming Hinske's untradable), that clears up $15 million, more than enough to bring in Abreu. (Wishful thinking perhaps)
Pistol - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 09:12 AM EST (#134951) #
"Is Overbay arbitration eligable this year?"

Yes, it'll be his first year of arbitration. He'll probably get something in the $2.5-$3.0 million range.
Terran - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 09:17 AM EST (#134952) #
If it is a salary dump, I'd make the trade if it cleared money to bring in a big bat.

Even as a salary dump I'm not sure I'd do it. I'd rather have Hillenbrand v Overbay is a .792 OPS and a .816 one for 2005, which isn't much different. Not much different in terms of power either. So from that stand point I guess Overbay, being the cheaper option, is the better option. My main problem would be putting Bush in it as well. He's a decent trade chip, and we'd be giving him away just to clear Hillenbrand's salary. I'd only do this one if we had another deal all but sealed and we needed that extra cash right away.

What about Koskie to the Twins?

RSN suggested Koskie to the Dodgers. I guess whichever one makes a better offer assuming we're shopping him. I don't really mind giving him up because we could have Hill fill in there pretty easily.
Newton - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 09:17 AM EST (#134953) #
As long as Eric Hinske never DH's this season I like Overbay for Hillenbrand and Bush. You add performance at first and save 3 million or so dollars at first but do lose a cheap serviceable major league ready starter.

Gentleman, we musn't forget Erubiel Durazo. I realize there are questions about his readiness to start the season but Overbay at 1st and Durazo at DH would be tremendous. Nomar would also make a nice DH/RF guy as would Larry Walker.

Skills - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 09:20 AM EST (#134955) #
I'm skeptical about the Jays' interest in Mench and about Mench himself. Mench has a weak OBP and his splits away from the Texas hitters paradise are weak. I'd rather we move on Overbay, or perhaps better yet, Wilkerson.
Terran - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 09:22 AM EST (#134956) #
Nomar would also make a nice DH/RF guy as would Larry Walker.

I think Larry Walker's pretty much retired at this point. Besides, we'd have no chance of getting a full season out of him. He only played 100 games last year and I think he'd probably play even less if he signed for 06.
GeoffAtMac - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 09:28 AM EST (#134957) #
Player vs. player, I would NOT make that trade, since Bush is a valuable starter and Overbay's numbers are only slightly better than Hillenbrand's.

I agree, and is Overbay really worth that kind of price even as a salary dump? I feel like the Jays could make that salary dump elsewhere and do better.

But then I think to myself, who am I specifically thinking of as a better option? And then I can't really think of an answer.

What about Koskie to the Twins?

I would guess that the Twins don't have a lot of money left after acquiring Luis Castillo. Plus, I haven't heard any more about the juicy Morneau-for-Koskue rumours that were floated a few months back.

Leigh - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 09:38 AM EST (#134958) #
Substituting Overbay for Hillenbrand projects to net us 3-5 extra wins, in my opinion.

Hillenbrand for Overbay is a no-brainer, slam-dunk, F'in A trade every time. But adding in what could be a few very good, cheap years of Dave Bush, I suppose it gets subjective there.
Terran - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 09:46 AM EST (#134959) #
Substituting Overbay for Hillenbrand projects to net us 3-5 extra wins, in my opinion. Hillenbrand for Overbay is a no-brainer, slam-dunk, F'in A trade every time.

What is it that Overbay does that would give us 5 more wins? Hillenbrand was 291/343/449 last year while Overbay was 276/367/449. I don't see much of a difference...
Pistol - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 09:57 AM EST (#134960) #
"Hillenbrand for Overbay is a no-brainer, slam-dunk, F'in A trade every time"

Well, I'm not so certain of that. I'd rather have Overbay than Hillenbrand, but last year they had virtually identical VORPs as 1B and Hillenbrand also has the ability to play 3B as well.

I'm not sure why the Brewers would want Hillenbrand back anyway so it's probably a moot point. It sounds like the Brewers are looking for a pitcher. I would think a Bush/Overbay swap would be pretty fair which is what the Milwaukee papers wrote was one of the proposals.

http://www.jsonline.com/sports/brew/dec05/375864.asp

**** Toronto is believed to have given the Brewers a number of pitchers to consider in the deal, including right-hander Dave Bush.

Ash admitted the Brewers' interest was piqued by the discussions and the sides agreed to meet again today for further discussions.

"I'd describe them as aggressive," Ash said, "but they're not the only club that's been aggressive. Clubs are stepping up. There has been no closure but some progress has been made." ****
Mike Green - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 10:04 AM EST (#134961) #
Overbay for Hillenbrand is a no-brainer. Overbay is 28 and has has a career line of .285/.373/.450; Hillenbrand is 29 with a career line of .288/.327/.445. Overbay is by all accounts a significantly better defender at first. I'd be surprised if that deal happened because Hillenbrand will earn more than Overbay in 2006, and I didn't think the Brewers were taking on salary.

Dave Bush is a whole 'nother story, and I think I'll let Jonny or Magpie tackle that one.
Leigh - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 10:10 AM EST (#134962) #
I was alluding to Timpinder's post with regard to Hillenbrand's inclusion in the rumour.

I was looking at their career lines, Overbay's .285/.373/.450 to Hillenbrand's .288/.327/.448. I believe that the real Shea Hillenbrand is the one circa 2001-2003. Playing in the extreme hitter's environment in Arizona obsured his 2004 numbers, whereas getting hit by 22(!) pitches obscured his 2005 numbers. The man has 112 career walks in nearly 3000 plate appearances.
HoJu - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 10:14 AM EST (#134963) #
This is from MLB.com

The Brewers may be increasing payroll -- from $42 million last season to the $50 million range in 2006

Newton - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 10:34 AM EST (#134965) #
Koskie:

I'm not sold on Hill as an everyday third baseman. A solid 6 week offensive debut does not prove a guy is ready for every day play at a corner position. I wouldn't trade Koskie unless it was a necessary salary shedding precursor to the acquisition of a legitimate and proven bat. We should attempt to deal Hinske, Hillenbrand, and Batista before we move Koskie.
timpinder - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 10:40 AM EST (#134966) #
Jerry Crasnick ESPN Insider- "Milwaukee and Toronto are discussing a deal that would send firstbaseman Lyle Overbay to the Blue Jays for infielder Shea Hillenbrand and pitcher David Bush". The Milwaukee papers suggest the discussions are serious.

Jonny German figures Hillenbrand will make approximately $5.5 million in arbitration.

Pistol projects Overbay will get between $2.5 - $3 million.

So, basically: Do you trade David Bush for better defense and slightly better hitting at 1B, plus $3 million cash??

I like Bush, but now that I think about it more, that sounds like a reasonable trade.
Leigh - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 10:47 AM EST (#134967) #
So, basically: Do you trade David Bush for better defense and slightly better hitting at 1B, plus $3 million cash?? [emphasis added]

I think that is the question, except that the hitting difference is more than slight.

Terran - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 10:52 AM EST (#134968) #
So, basically: Do you trade David Bush for better defense and slightly better hitting at 1B, plus $3 million cash??
I like Bush, but now that I think about it more, that sounds like a reasonable trade.


I didn't like this at first but the more I think about it the more I'm willing. Still, Bush is one of our most expendable trade chips. He's not needed anywhere and he hasn't been bad plus he's young and cheap. I don't think the market for Batista or Lilly is particularly big and then we get into guys that we get into our better prospects McGowan and League (even after last year). If we need this in terms of a salary dump then maybe, but I'd rather save Bush as a barginning chip in a bigger upgrade if possible.
TimberLee - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 10:58 AM EST (#134970) #
There is no point at all to giving up Hillenbrand for Overbay. You trade a RH batter for a LH, get a bit better defence at 1B and give up a serviceable 3B. Their numbers should be similar in the future as far as anything I've seen. If the Jays also give up a promising young cheap ML-ready starter, that's a sure sign they're clearing space for something else to happen.
There have to be several teams who'd like a Bush.
Jordan - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:07 AM EST (#134971) #
That is a tough call. Overbay > Hillenbrand, both in terms of talent and dollars, but there are few people around here who like Dave Bush more than I do; he's going to be a fine pitcher. Don't overlook the importance of a defensive upgrade in Overbay: great gloves at 2B and 1B (assuming Hudson stays put) would be tremendous for this pitching staff.

If Milwaukee sent back a minor-league pitcher of some substance in the deal, I think I would do it. If the Brewers took Hinske instead of Hillenbrand, I'd be all over it.
Jacko - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:25 AM EST (#134975) #
The Brewers ain't going to take Hinske over Hilly. Hillenbrand plays better defense at 3B, and more importantly, bats righthanded. The Brewers already have the left side of a platoon at 3B on their roster (Branyan).

Overbay's OBP would be a tremendous boost to the offense, but he would make the Jays even more vulnerable to LHP. They would need to add a big righthanded bat to help balance things out.

Hmmm, Miguel Cabrera bats right...
BCMike - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:29 AM EST (#134976) #
I'm not sure how much I like that deal. Just because the Jays have a surplus of pitching it does not mean they should trade it away for a marginal offensive improvement. Of course it all depends on what the other plans are, but straight up I'm not sure if I'd be willing to give up on Bush.
John Northey - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:39 AM EST (#134981) #
I've posted before, and I probably will again. The spread in offense between Hinske and Hillenbrand is not that big. If some GM out there wants Hillenbrand over Hinske I say don't worry about it. Hillenbrand 291/343/449 vs Hinske 262/333/430 = 29 OPS points which is easily a random variation for a single season. Career Hillenbrand 288/327/448 vs Hinske 258/335/430 = 10 OPS points - very easily a random variation and Hinske has the edge in OBP. Hillenbrand has the advantage entirely through a higher batting average. Hinske has the better eye. Hillenbrand is 2 years older and might cost more over the next few years. The 'moneyball' thing to do (save money while getting similar production) is keep Hinske and dump Hillenbrand (well, dump both ideally since neither is ideal for 1B/DH).

Geez. Never thought I'd be defending Hinske's contact as being not too bad vs other options.
Ryan B. - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:57 AM EST (#134982) #
An important note here. When J.P was on Prime Time last night he said "I have something sitting upstairs that can clear $12M off the payroll." Unless it's a big vacume for sucking up money then it must be a trade that included Koskie of Hinske.

I will dance through the streets or Ottawa if Hinske is traded for anything, even a broken bat.
Skills - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 12:00 PM EST (#134983) #
I will also dance through the streets of Ottawa, although I will need someone to provide me with airfare from New Jersey and something to excuse me from my Property Law exam tomorrow (I don't think the registrar is a Jays fan).
Ron - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 12:02 PM EST (#134984) #
I would be more than happy to give up Dave Bush and another prospect for Overbay.

Bush took a huge step backwards last season and at this point he has number 5 pitcher written all over him.

Fans to tend to over-value their own players, and I feel like some are doing it with Bush.

Jordan - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 12:05 PM EST (#134985) #
The spread in offense between Hinske and Hillenbrand is not that big.

True. My interest in seeing Hinske included in that sort of deal is entirely bound up in the $10M or so remaining on his contract, rather than any real talent advantage owned by Hillenbrand, who is arb-eligible and who at worst could be salary-dumped in a Cory-Lidle-type deal. But we shall see.

Terran - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 12:12 PM EST (#134986) #
Fans to tend to over-value their own players, and I feel like some are doing it with Bush.

Well that's partially true, but last year isn't an entirely accurate picture either. For one thing a little under 1/3rd of his starts was against Boston and New York. He had a tough beginning of the year which snowballed but he still rebounded with a respectable 4.23 ERA in the 2nd half (this is a division where the ERA winner was Josh Towers at 3.71). His ERA+ was a decent 99. He'll also be 26 next year so he has room to grow still. He doesn't have a spot in this rotation, but I still think he can be a very solid starter.
Mike Green - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 12:27 PM EST (#134988) #
Dave Bush has a career major league ERA+ of 111, and a minor league record that is entirely consistent with that. He turned 26 last month. For reference sake, Burnett's career major league ERA+ is 110, and he turns 29 next month. Of course, there's more to projecting future performance than age and past ERA+, but they are important factors. If Bush repeats his career line, he's one heck of a #5 starter.
Kieran - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 12:27 PM EST (#134989) #
I'm a fan of Bush's tenacity and respectable results early in his career. Take a look at Chris Carpenter's first few seasons and you will see that Bush at 26 years of age is looking ok.

That said, if we want an impact bat, we will have to give up talent...and I'd rather deal Bush than McGowan.
Rich - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 12:34 PM EST (#134991) #
I see Bush's upside as a middle-of-the-rotation filler. I like his breaking stuff and his command, but he struggles with his consistency and by the accounts I've read doesn't have the same velocity that he did when he relieved. His comps (http://www.baseball-reference.com/b/bushda01.shtml) are a rather unremarkeable bunch.

I'd rather have Bush than Batista, but I don't think he has Carpernter-like stuff and isn't likely to reach that level of success. For the right hitter I'd deal him. If JP hangs on to him, I'd like to see him open at Syracuse and show that he's simply too good to be in the minors any longer.
Newton - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 12:45 PM EST (#134993) #
Overbay for Bush and a savings of 3 mill is a tremendous deal for the Jays.

I have been outspoken in the last 2 weeks about his potential value to the Jays and have even advocated dealing McGowan for Overbay.

Hillenbrand exceeded expectations offensively last season and he was still less valuable than Overbay, who had a dissapointing offensive season, without taking into account Overbay's superior defence (remember Doc, AJ and Towers produce groundballs aplenty).

Overbay hasn't yet hit more than 20 homeruns or topped 100 rbi, facts taken by some as being demonstrative of his mediocrity but these facts also make him a tremendous value notwithstanding his arbitration eligibility.

The bottom line is this guy steps in as our best hitter even if he doesn't improve one iota and I fully expect him to develop into a 25 HR guy who will post an .850 to .900 level OPS over the next 3-4 seasons.


Ducey - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 12:49 PM EST (#134995) #
"Fans to tend to over-value their own players, and I feel like some are doing it with Bush."

Well lots of fans on this site tend to undervalue the Jays players. As noted above, Bush's stats and mentality are likely to be quite valuable. Add in the fact you are only paying $350,000 for him and he is exactly the type of player the Jays need to fill out the rotation. He would likely also be a pretty valuable reliever.

In a few years one of Marcum, Banks or Janssen might do a good impersonation of him and he will be more expensive. Until then, you don't want to give him up easily.
binnister - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 01:16 PM EST (#134996) #
CBC sports reporting no salary arb for the Rocket...

http://www.cbc.ca/story/sports/national/2005/12/07/Sports/clemens051207.html
Leigh - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 01:18 PM EST (#134997) #
Very well put, Newton.
John Northey - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 01:25 PM EST (#134998) #
Hmm. What is the ERA+ of the potential Jay starters?

Listing name, baseball age in 2006, ERA+ in 2005 and ERA+ career (via http://www.BaseballReference.com)

Halladay 29 - 184 127
AJ Burnett 29 - 117 110
Lilly 30 - 80 97
Towers 29 - 120 100
Chacin 25 - 119 123
Bush 26 - 99 111
Batista 35 - 109 103
Downs 30 - 103 86
Walker 37 - 126 102
McGowan 24 - 70 70

So, the Jays could easily have an entirely under 30 rotation in 2006 - Halladay/Burnett/Towers/Chacin/Bush or McGowan. The 30+'s would be Lilly/Batista/Downs/Walker.

Wow. 10 candidates. 7 with career ERA+'s at 100+. 7 with an ERA+ of 100+ last year plus Bush at 99. 6 with ERA+'s of 100+ both last year and career. Only two are sub 100 in both. McGowan, and he is the hot prospect, and Lilly - the 2004 all-star for the Jays. Sheesh. Can any other team say that at the moment? Shaun Marcum is also thought to have a slight chance and he was not scored on in his 8 innings of ML ball. Sweet.

The pen? The only candidate who didn't have a 100+ ERA+ last year was League (23 next year). McGowan also if you see him in the pen. This out of the 9 guys most likely to be there (BJ, Batista, Schoeneweis, Frasor, Speier, Chulk, Downs, Walker plus League).
timpinder - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 01:25 PM EST (#134999) #
Any speculation as to what J.P.'s plan is to shed $12 million?

I wonder if he has Hinske latched onto Hudson or Chacin as part of a trade package.

Also,IF Hudson is traded, do you put Hill at SS because of his better arm and move Adams to 2B, or do you maintain the status quo?

John Northey - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 01:32 PM EST (#135001) #
CBC sports reporting no salary arb for the Rocket...

Dang. I want another two seasons out of him. Then he could reach #3 all time in the win list (32 wins away). Of course, then I'd hope he hung around 2 more to crack 400 wins (27 more). Then one more to move into second (Walter Johnson is at 417). Five more years? He'd be 47, or one more year than Nolan Ryan lasted, one less than Phil Niekro.

Sadly, there is no way he can reach Cy for #1 at 511 which is 170 more wins, or another 10+ seasons.

Never thought I'd see a guy have a shot at the top 2 for pitching wins but Roger could do it if he wants to and his health holds on.

mikerich - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 01:45 PM EST (#135003) #
The Braves have traded catcher Johnny Estrada to the Diamondbacks for right-handed relievers Lance Cormier and Oscar Villarreal, FOXSports.com's Ken Rosenthal is reporting. Not a bad deal for the Diamondbacks. Estrada probably won't go back to hitting like he did in 2004, but he's solid enough and inexpensive. Cormier has little upside as a middle reliever, and Villarreal still hasn't recovered from being overused in 2003. -rotoworld

Looks like the Jays won't be picking up Estrada.

Mick Doherty - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 01:47 PM EST (#135004) #
Jamey Newberg, part-time Bauxite and author/owner of the incomparable Newberg Report e-mail/Web site, posts this today; much of this is rehash from the local papers in DFW and TO, but if you're thinking there's an imminent Jay/Ranger deal, here's the full scoop:
    [Evan] Grant reports that Toronto might be willing to trade lefthander Ted Lilly or righthanders Miguel Batista or David Bush for [Kevin] Mench, and that the Jays could also offer to put interesting reliever (and Mark Connor favorite) Brandon League in a deal. [T.R.] Sullivan writes that Toronto's interest in Mench, however, seems to have cooled.

    Geoff Baker of the Toronto Star reports that one scenario discussed by Texas and Toronto would have Mench and Gonzalez going to the Jays for Batista, League, and (Buck Showalter favorite) second baseman Orlando Hudson.

    Bob Elliott of the Toronto Sun offers the same speculation, adding that [Gerald] Laird could be involved.

The main point of Jamey's post today is a possible Alfonso Soriano to the Dodgers for two prospects deal.
timpinder - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 02:03 PM EST (#135010) #
In sincerely hope that Batista, League, and Hudson for Mench would never happen. Sometimes I wonder where writers get this stuff.
Ron - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 02:05 PM EST (#135012) #
I have a really hard time seeing Hudson being dealt unless he's part of a package that would bring a proven 30+ HR bat to the Jays.

I believe the Jays can upgrade the O without giving up the O-Dog in a trade.
Pistol - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 02:07 PM EST (#135014) #
Baker and Elliot say a Texas deal is possible.

Blair says the Jays have moved on from the Rangers because 'JP thinks he can do better than Mench'.

I know who I trust of those three.
Matthew E - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 02:10 PM EST (#135015) #
Well, if Halladay and Burnett are both extreme groundball guys, then it follows that Hudson is more valuable to the Jays than he would be to anyone else. In other words, it'd be pretty hard to get enough value back for him in a trade. I say we keep him.
TamRa - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 02:28 PM EST (#135018) #
I'm relieved to hear JP has moved on from mench....I've seen reports of mtt Clement being offered for Overbay, I hope that happens because acquiring a guy only slightly better than what we have gums up the notion of getting a better 1B for the long term (Kotchman, for instance, or Gonzalez...or even wait until next year and sign Nick Johnson) the more I hear about overbay the more I hope he goes elsewhere....I actually think the Jyas fans are UNDERvaluing Dave Bush....
Mike D - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 02:36 PM EST (#135021) #
Mark Redman has been traded to the Royals for young reliever Jonah Bayliss and a player to be named later. That should scuttle the "Trot Nixon to Pittsburgh for pitching" talk.
Mike D - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 02:40 PM EST (#135022) #
And Sean Burroughs has been traded to the D-Rays for Dewon Brazelton. Relative to their potential, both were mind-numbingly awful last season. A change of scenery might do both players some good.
Mike Green - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 02:51 PM EST (#135025) #
I agree with Mike D. The Burroughs-Brazleton trade is a wise one for both teams. I guess this means that B.J. Upton needs more work in triple A. Just as well not to start his arbitration clock running if you're Tampa.

The flight from Durham to Tampa in late June will probably carry 3 newcomers (Bankston/Young/Upton). I doubt the Rays will even consider a trade for Gomes now, but at the All-Star break, things may be very different.
Maldoff - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 03:00 PM EST (#135027) #
With all of this talk surrounding the Dodgers, what about making a trade for James Loney, the big hitting 1B in thei farm system? I know we don't need more young guys, but if that's the best route to get a good run producer, maybe they Jays should look that way.
RhyZa - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 03:15 PM EST (#135029) #
I can't believe SD would deal Loretta for Mirabelli... looks like an outright steal for the Sox if it does go through.
MatO - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 03:18 PM EST (#135030) #
Loney went .284 .357 .419 in AA this year. A trade for him would be on speculation that he's going to develop power that he has yet to show in his minor league career. He certainly wouldn't be ready to start the 2006 season in Toronto.
Skills - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 03:23 PM EST (#135032) #
no way the Jays give up Hudson for Mench. Anything more than one of those pitchers seem like much. Considering how dependent the Jays currently are on pitching, Hudson's value (to the Jays) could not be higher given his ability to suck up grounders. Only way I would support trading Hudson is if it helped get us (as someone mentioned before) a guy who could hit 30+ HRs, and even then I'd be a little hesitant (perhaps irrationally).
Mark - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 03:33 PM EST (#135033) #
"Hillenbrand exceeded expectations offensively last season"

I would say he gave exactly what was expected. What he exceeded expectatoins in was HBP. He was hit 22 times last year, 10 more times than the next highest total in his career(2002,2004). This would account for the slightly higher OBP and OPS.

2005 .
.291 .343 .449 .792
Career
.288 .327 .448 .775
andrewkw - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 03:34 PM EST (#135034) #
The red sox got a good deal for Mirabelli but hows Wakefield going to do without him?

Check out this latest rumor from rotowire not to be confused with rotoworld :
" Update: Toronto has re-focused its efforts to acquire Overbay now that pitching has been addressed, the Toronto Sun reports. Recommendation: The current rumor involves Miguel Batista, along with either David Bush or David Purcey. "

yeah right.

Jordan - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 03:41 PM EST (#135035) #
Seems to me that Toronto's primary interest in Texas properties is Gerald Laird -- I'm glad the Mench talk has cooled, and I don't know if JP's an Adrian Gonzalez believer, but I'm not particularly.
Twilight - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 03:49 PM EST (#135037) #
Well, someone better learn to catch Timmy. :)

This could be fun. Wild Pitch competition in the AL East: AJ Burnett vs. Tim Wakefield.
Newton - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 03:49 PM EST (#135038) #
Mark,

The main point of my comment was that even in his best seasons (OPS around .800) Hillenbrand doesn't eclipse what Overbay produces in a dissapointing season.





Mark - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 03:53 PM EST (#135039) #
Blair's Blog is up, with this interesting tidbit

"the Blue Jays, according to sources, have spun together a plan that would see them make a play for Wily Mo Pena from the Reds, then flip Pena to the Washington Nationals for Brad Wilkerson...the move will require the Blue Jays to move Shea Hillenbrand or Eric Hinske to the Reds Alex Rios could also take their place along with a pitcher. "
Ryan B. - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 03:57 PM EST (#135040) #
Why in the blue heel would J.P flip Willy Mo, I'd keep him. He has 30hr+ potential.
RhyZa - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 04:00 PM EST (#135042) #
I guess because he strikes out a ton, and Wilkerson is the better overall player.
Twilight - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 04:05 PM EST (#135043) #
Wow that's kinda tough.

Wilkerson .248/.351/.405, 11 HR
Mo Pena .254/.304/.492, 19 HR

I would choose Mo Pena based on the fact that he's only 23 (as opposed to 28). Either way I don't think this will be a huge upgrade in RF. I'd almost rather have Mench.
Jordan - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 04:09 PM EST (#135044) #
Wilkerson offers a little less power than Pena, with a slightly better batting average and much, much better plate discipline. Wilkerson walked 84 times last year, whereas Pena has walked 54 times in 800+ career ABs. I'd make that trade right away, but getting Pena won't be easy.
RhyZa - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 04:12 PM EST (#135045) #
Maybe I was selling Pena short in the field, and on the bases... heck I'd rather have them both. But I don't think Wilkerson's power numbers last year was indicative of what he's capable of (maybe not 30, but 20-25 HR's should be a reasonable expectation). It's a safe bet that Wily Mo has more power (and untapped power at that), and maybe thats what we need more, but I don't see why Cinci do it now that they've moved Casey unless they're desperate for a 3B.
Pistol - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 04:19 PM EST (#135049) #
Here's the Blair Blog link:

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20051101.wblai/BNStory/Sports/

Potential trades for Overbay or Wilkerson? I say get em both!
Sherrystar - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 04:22 PM EST (#135050) #
Wow, slow rumour day today... I guess yesterday got us spoiled!

Isn't that too much to give up for Wilkerson? And isn't Pena still realtively young?

I don't see Cinci doing this one as they can move Dunn to first and Pena can play every day in the outfield.
Wedding Singer - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 04:24 PM EST (#135052) #
Here is another interesting tidbit from the Blair's blog:

"The Blue Jays have also continued to talk to the Milwaukee Brewers about Lyle Overbay, and they will have further discussions with Arn Tellem, the agent for Nomar Garciaparra. Dave Bush and Miguel Batista remain the pitchers most likely to move, although general manager J.P. Ricciardi is prepared to move one of his higher-ranked Single-A or Double-A starters (perhaps Zach Jackson).

He does not want to deal Dustin McGowan. Period."

Interesting that JP might be willing to deal some prospects.

I think the problem with getting both Overbay and Wilkerson is that the team becomes too left-handed - ideally, I think JP wants to add a power RH bat - maybe that's where Nomar or Thomas would come in to play.

Sherrystar - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 04:26 PM EST (#135053) #
Thanks for always putting up the blog links...

Over the last few weeks I've come to realize that Blair's blog is a great read!
Sheldon - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 04:27 PM EST (#135054) #
They should get Willy Mo just cause he has the coolest name, is pretty young and could be a beast....of course I'm basing that on my Xbox MVP 2005 franchise...if it is right he'll be hitting 50 homers per year in a few :)
Mike D - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 04:30 PM EST (#135055) #
Not to be a nabob of negativity, but a few potential red flags:

Wily Mo Pena, road: .232/.272/.435
Wily Mo Pena, post-All-Star: .224/.290/.401

Brad Wilkerson, road (i.e., away from RFK): .257/.337/.414
Brad Wilkerson, post-All-Star: .219/.319/.371

Meanwhile, erstwhile Jay-for-a-day Tom Verducci weighs in on the Jays' next move. Count him among the Nomar-to-Toronto fans.
Jordan - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 04:32 PM EST (#135056) #
One of the best stories at the winter meetings is Bernie Williams, the long-time New York Yankees stalwart who is here interviewing personal trainers with an eye toward overhauling his off-season program.

It is a good story. But it should be noted that Williams hardly needs to interview personal trainers in Dallas. He's in Dallas to deliberately show teams that he's interviewing personal trainers. Small point, but I wanted to flag it in passing.

Not that I think it would help much -- I've never heard anyone questioning Williams' conditioning. The knock on him is simply that his baseball skills have deteriorated, and workouts probably won't help that much.

david wang - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 04:32 PM EST (#135057) #
My ideal BlueJay rotation for next year would be

Halladay
Burnett
Towers
Lilly
Bush

This leaves Batista and Chacin expendable, and I think there would be a market for both these players and that if there is no one better, that Lyle Overbay would look pretty good hitting 3rd getting on base for Vernon.

I think that Hinske and Hillenbrand should be traded in order to clear up both the 1B and DH spots, and a run at Overbay and Thomas would make me an even happier Jays fan.
Mike Green - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 04:42 PM EST (#135059) #
Guess who is Wily Mo Pena's closest comp by a long shot? Don't peek until you've guessed.

OK. Here's the answer.
Sherrystar - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 04:50 PM EST (#135061) #
Wow! But Mike, you're supposed to post something like this AFTER the Jays have acquired him!
Terran - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 04:53 PM EST (#135062) #
Halladay
Burnett
Towers
Lilly
Bush

This leaves Batista and Chacin expendable, and I think there would be a market for both these players


Yah there is a market for them, but why trade Chacin? He's got a huge amount of potential and is already good as a #3 starter.
Newton - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 04:54 PM EST (#135063) #
Mike D, interesting to see that Manny would accept a trade to Toronto per Verducci.

I love Manny and with the liberals and convervatives promising new day care funding this could be a great fit.

I doubt Boston would deal him to an ambitious divisional rival but lop 5 mill of his salary each of the next 3 years and Manny would be a 1 stop offensive solution for the Jays.

He would absolutely tear it up in the Dome.
Sheldon - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 04:55 PM EST (#135064) #
Maybe that comparison is why he hits so many homers in MVP?

Anyways I think he's 1st comparison is pretty cool...one of my childhood favorites...
Sherrystar - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 04:59 PM EST (#135065) #
Sheldon, enjoy MVP for this year as there aint gonne be one for next year! (In my first season I traded Lilly for Burnett and it paid wonders!)
Terran - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 05:10 PM EST (#135067) #
Sheldon, enjoy MVP for this year as there aint gonne be one for next year! (In my first season I traded Lilly for Burnett and it paid wonders!)

Actually, they are making an MVP game this year. The difference is that it will be with 120ish NCAA baseball teams instead. They'll also have a build a stadium mode that actually let's you build a stadium this time.
Named For Hank - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 05:11 PM EST (#135068) #
Over the last few weeks I've come to realize that Blair's blog is a great read!

I really, really miss the full page Blair on Baseball in the Globe and Mail. Imagine Blair's blog with a couple of the best baseball photographs from around the league, laid out over a full page with some sidebars that frequently include fun numbers and Three Cheers / Three Jeers. Aside from the baseball games, Blair on Baseball is the best part of the baseball season.

Sherry, ditch those other Toronto papers, the Globe has the best baseball coverage by far.
Named For Hank - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 05:12 PM EST (#135070) #
Guess who is Wily Mo Pena's closest comp by a long shot?

Someone get this information to Jamie Campbell, stat!
Mike Green - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 05:20 PM EST (#135071) #
Actually, the 2nd closest comp (in my view) is rather interesting. It's not really Rocky Colavito, Pete Incaviglia, Willie Horton, Bobby Bonds or Dave Kingman who are also on the list ahead of this guy. Actually, it's Roger Maris, who at 23 didn't look like much, but improved at 24 and then went nuts from 25-27 in New York. Pena's comp list is actually pretty amazing.
Mike Green - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 05:23 PM EST (#135072) #
convervatives

They're trying. Barbeques in the summer. I'm sure they'll be at the clubs for New Year's. Some of 'em might even have pink hair.:)
Craig B - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 05:57 PM EST (#135077) #
Actually, the 2nd closest comp (in my view) is rather interesting... it's Roger Maris, who at 23 didn't look like much, but improved at 24 and then went nuts from 25-27 in New York.

Meh. Jesse was a better ballplayer.

VBF - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 06:07 PM EST (#135079) #
The wording may be a bit tricky, but Jamie Campbell says that "a deal is in place" to acquire Lyle Overbay.
GeoffAtMac - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 06:21 PM EST (#135080) #

If any of these facts are remotely acccurate:

-Wily Mo is up for grabs
-The Reds would take Eric Hinske
-Wily Mo is similar to Jesse Barfield (good karma or what?)

Then we should pull the trigger...now.

Our outfield would be much improved:

Vernon, Wily Mo, Rios / Cat / Sparky

-Then we move an outfielder plus a pitcher for another catcher, or possibly for a DH

C Zaun / New catcher
1B New 1B or Shea
2B O-Dog
SS Russ Adams or Aaron Hill
3B Corey Koskie (backed up by Hill)
LF Cat / Reed / Rios
CF Vernon
RF Wily Mo
DH Shea (I guess?) or another FA, like Sanders / Nomar

Wow. Our team is potentially looking very good.

greenfrog - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 06:54 PM EST (#135084) #
Overbay has nice peripheral numbers, but I wonder why his production has been so low. He only scored 83 runs with 72 RBI last year, despite playing a full season. Was Milwaukee's offense really that bad?

Hillenbrand and Jackson or Bush seems like a reasonable, if painful, price to pay for Overbay. I hope the Jays don't clear out too much young pitching talent in their pursuit of the mid-range offensive talent out there (I definitely don't like the idea of trading Purcey; we need to keep all the high-ceiling guys we can).

I honestly don't know why anyone would be interested in Wily Mo. Yes, he's got lots of power potential. But his career OBP is truly awful (.304)--precisely the problem the Jays have to deal with.
timpinder - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 07:06 PM EST (#135085) #
How much would it likely cost to sign Garciappara to a 2 year deal? If I were J.P. I'd jump on it now before somebody else nabs him. There's 3 more months left for trades to happen.

What are the Jays planning to do with John-Ford Griffin? He's got power, and if they could get rid of Hinske, Griffin could be a very cheap lefty platoon option or power threat off the bench.
Glevin - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 07:25 PM EST (#135086) #
The fundemental problem the Jays have offensively, is that they are mediocre almost everywhere. It is very difficult for teams to succeed without a lineup that has some scary hitters. If you look at contenders, the Jays hitters are near the bottom offensively of almost every position. Say the contenders are NYY, Bos, Chi, Cle, Min, LAA, and Oak. I won't bore you with the details, (I did go through it), but the Blue Jays are at the top in CF and nowhere near the top anywhere else. While the Jays talk about how solid Zaun was, ther other contenders have Posada, Varitek, Mauer, and Victor Martinez. While the Jays hope Adams can be solid, the other teams have guys like Jeter, Peralta, and Bobby Crosby. The fact is that every contending team has guys who are, well, studs offensively. (The Twins are the worst, and they still have Mauer, Morneau, and Hunter) The Jays don't have any studs. None. Their best hitter has a career OBP of .330 and a career OPS+ of 108 which is lower than Bill Mueller's. In RC/9inn last year, The Jays Best was Hillenbrand at 40th in the AL. Boston has #4, 6, 16, 18, and 38. NYY had 1, 2, 10, 15, 17 and 36. CHW had 9 and 28. Min had #24, Clev had #3, 14, 19, 27, and 31. Ana had #5 and 39 and Oak had #34. In OPS, the top Jay was 36th and so on...Pena and Overbay aren't going to change this.
Nick - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 07:30 PM EST (#135087) #
I too am leery about giving up a player like Dave Bush. But the Jays strength is having good young cheap pitchers. Some are already with the Jays and some are on their way for 2006 and 2007. The Jays have approximately zero good young cheap hitters on the way with only Hill and Adams with the major league club. And Hill and Adams are far from a sure thing to produce in 2006. The Jays have little choice but to surrender some of their young pitching to obtain players like Overbay. It may be painful to trade away players like Bush, but what else can they do? They have to do it.
david wang - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 07:39 PM EST (#135088) #
However, which Yankee, Boston, Minnesota or Cleveland top 2 will be as good as Halladay/Burnett?

We can't compete with Boston or New York in hitting, we can only improve our current hitting, have amazing pitching and some luck in order to be able to start passing them and into the play-offs. The only hitters available that would give us someone that would hit 3rd, 4th or 5th for Boston or New York would be through trade, and they are Manny and Abreru, now who here is willing to take either of these contracts without some comphensation?
Nick - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 07:43 PM EST (#135089) #
Glevin - my guess is that NY and Boston fans are discussing how despite their potent lineups, they'll never go anywhere unless they can improve their pitching. Boston won't look nearly as potent without Ramirez, I don't care who they replace him with. They could lose Damon as well, although I doubt it.
Nick - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 07:44 PM EST (#135090) #
I also think Toronto's team defense is much better than NY and Boston, largely thanks to O-Dog and Vernon.
Pistol - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 07:56 PM EST (#135092) #
Per ESPN, Trevor Hoffman resigned with the Padres for 2 years and $13.5 million.
Mick Doherty - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 07:57 PM EST (#135093) #
However, which Yankee, Boston, Minnesota or Cleveland top 2 will be as good as Halladay/Burnett?

This is an answer to a bit of an expansion of your question as posed, but ...

I think any team running out a starting rotation of two Hall of Famers (Johnson and Mussina) followed by a healthy Carl Pavano and some combination of Chien Ming-Wang, Jaret Wright (admittedly, ugh), Aaron Small and Shawn Chacon, is not terribly worried about the Blue Jays pitching being "significantly better" than theirs.

Then you have Sturtze, Franklin, Henn and Proctor or DePaula -- true, pedestrian if workmanblike, all -- along with whoever's left over from the rotation, setting up another Hall of Fame walk-in lock, Mariano Rivera.

The only things that should concern the Yankees about their pitching -- and these are both very real, legitimate concerns -- are age and injury.

R Billie - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 07:58 PM EST (#135094) #
Glev, I can't say I disagree with you. The Jays used to have one stud in Delgado and haven't even come close to replacing that production at any one position.

They can put together their team of Overbays, Koskies, Hillenbrands, Hinskes, and others. But you're fighting against teams with bigger guns. And bigger guns at places where offence is scarces (catcher, middle infield).

Putting $20 million per season in Ryan and Burnett is all fine and dandy, but without any true offensive leaders I'm really concerned that this team will finish around the same place in run differential and be a more expensive, slightly better third place team.
david wang - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 07:59 PM EST (#135095) #
Why exactly is Boston looking to trade Manny? There not going to get much back, but he and Ortiz provide the big mashers that AL teams need. Was there some fall-out or such that I missed?
Lefty - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 08:09 PM EST (#135097) #
Mick, I think the cruxed of the biscuit is in your last line.

The only things that should concern the Yankees about their pitching -- and these are both very real, legitimate concerns -- are age and injury.

The jury was out going into last season as it will rightfully be again in 06.

Waveburner - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 08:16 PM EST (#135099) #
The rumours I like best are for Nomar and Wilkerson. If we could somehow get Nick Johnson away from Washington at the same time, our lineup would be pretty sweet. Now I'm not a hardcore baseball guy, so if my trade is horribly lopsided, please be gentle.

To Toronto:

Brad Wilkerson
Nick Johnson

To Washington:

Alex Rios (CF with big potential)
Miguel Batista (Replaces Loiza)
Eric Hinske (With some money eaten, I think he could be solid National Leaguer)
Russ Adams(Much better hitter than Guzman and has potential)
Adam Lind(1B prospect to eventually take Johnsons spot)

Washington is looking for a CF and Rios is cheap with plenty of potential. Miggy is on a decent contract and helps replace an ok starter in Loiza. If they insist on Hillenbrand or someone else instead of Hinske I'd probably do it, but if we eat say a mllion/season of his deal he's still a solid contributer. Adams is a good young SS and Lind is a solid hitting prospect (they seem to have mostly pitching in the minors, but if they would prefer Jackson or Banks I'd do that too). Toss in another prospect if necesary. My knowledge of player value isn't the greatest. If Johnson isn't available, then would Batista and Rios be enough for Wilkerson?

King Ryan - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 08:44 PM EST (#135101) #
                 AB/K     AB/BB    K/BB    AB/HR
Josh Phelps      3.50     12.80    3.70    21.10
Wily Mo Pena     2.88     15.37    5.80    16.27

I realize that Pena is very young, and has some awesome homerun potential, but if you're looking for an "all or nothing" guy, our old friend Josh could be had for a lot cheaper.
Nick - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 08:46 PM EST (#135102) #
The Yanks may not be worried, but I would be if I were them. Last year, their team finished 9th in the AL with a 4.52 ERA, just ahead of the Baltimore Orioles and just behind the Detroit Tigers. Toronto's ERA was 4.06, significantly better.

Let's look at Randy Johnson's K totals the last 3 years (not counting injury-plagued 2003):

2002: 334
2004: 290
2005: 211

Now let's be fair. 211 K's was still 2nd in the AL. But Randy Johnson is 42, will be 43 in Spetember, and is not the same Randy Johnson that won all those Cy Young awards. He gave up the 4th-most HR in the AL, behind Wakefield, Chen, and Radke. He had a worse ERA than Josh Towers and Gus Chacin and AJ Burnett. (I didn't check league or park-adjust numbers.) Let's not forget about Doc either, whose season got cut short by a line drive to the leg. His 3.71 ERA does not compare favorably to his career mark of 3.11.

Mike Mussina had the highest WHIP of his career in 2005, 1.37, which surpassed his previous career-high of 1.32 in 2004. Again, not bad, but it's not the same Mike Mussina of his prime. His ERA was 4.41 compared to his career ERA of 3.64. He turns 37 tomorrow.

Just because RJ will make the Hall and Mussina might does not mean the Yanks will be trotting out 2 Hall of Fame-caliber pitchers next year. To throw that term out there is misleading.

Aaron Small was 10-0 last year and had a very good 3.20 ERA. But with a 37/24 K/BB ratio in 76 IP, a 4.90 career ERA and the fact that he has pitched 294 major league innings at the age of 34, do you really expect a similar encore performance in 2006?

Carl Pavano is a mediocre pitcher who happened to have a career year in a contract season. He has surpassed 100 K's in a season exactly twice in his career. It has been well-publicized that he has told friends that he wishes he had never signed in NY. How well do you think he'll hold up under the pressure this year?

Shawon Chacon had a great 2.85 ERA in 79 IP. But with a 40/30 K/BB ratio, do you think he will post a sub-4 ERA next year? Don't bet the house on it.

OK, this is getting long. You admit ugh on Wright. Wang had 47 K's in 116 IP. How many pitchers with a K rate of 3.6 per 9 IP maintain any kind of level of success? Not many. He seems like a good GB pitcher to me, but we'll see how he fares in year 2.

Mariano Rivera is still superhuman. The middle relief is bad - period. We'll see how Farnsworth does in NY.

If the Yanks are not worried about their pitching, they should be.
timpinder - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 09:00 PM EST (#135106) #
I don't think you have to have a monster bat to be a legitimate contender. If the Jays replaced Hillenbrand, Hinske and Rios with Overbay, Garciaparra and Mench, which is a real possibility, I believe they'd be wildcard contenders.

Hill
Overbay
Garciaparra
Wells
Mench
Koskie
Catalanotto
Adams/Hudson
Zaun/Quiroz

That is a solid lineup. You've got 4 guys in the meat of the order that can hit 20+ homeruns each. You've got 2 guys leading off that are great hitters that can get on base and have some pop of their own. Your 7 and 8 hitters hit for average and are no easy outs, and even your backup catcher has proven he has power.

I'm not an over excited fan. I have never been optimistic and predicted the Jays would win it all in the last decade. But my fantasy team has been called "Jays in 2006" for about 4 years. I think they'll compete for the wildcard if they can get those bats.
Lefty - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 09:05 PM EST (#135109) #
Its looking like Lyle will be a Jay soon.

Source: rotoworld,com


The Brewers and Blue Jays are continuing to work on a Lyle Overbay deal, with the Blue Jays offering Shea Hillenbrand and a young pitcher.
David Bush, David Purcey and Zach Jackson are mentioned as possibilities. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel also says that the Brewers would likely get Hillenbrand in order to trade him, possibly to Minnesota. Dec. 7 - 8:48 pm et
Jobu - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 09:06 PM EST (#135110) #
i know the jays dont NEED him to be a contender, but it bums me out when I read things like the BlairBlog and he says both Manny and Sox have expressed interest in sending Manny this way but there's no way the Jays could afford the contract this season.

I know it's not my money and it's easy to say this, but for a guy like Manny, JP should be able to go up to Ted and say "Thank you for the generous pay increase, but if you could just see fit to throw us another 10s of millions I can bring a guy here who the team will jump upon his back and then be carried into the playoffs". You would think the buzz of bringing Manny here would increase revenue enough through sales and marketing, as well as make the wildcard a very likely destination. It might even be worth it for the Jays to have a season again where not getting the wildcard would be a dissapointment.

Then again it's never gonna happen, Ted's trying to run a responsible business, and I'd be happy just to put "NOMAR" on the back of Jays jersey. I'm really looking forward to this season.

~J.O. Bu
Halladayfan32 - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 09:09 PM EST (#135111) #
It looks like the Wilkerson deal isn't going to happen. Overbay is still on the radar.

The latest from Jeff Blair.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20051101.wblai/BNStory/Sports
King Ryan - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 09:16 PM EST (#135113) #
I like Lyle Overbay, and I would give up Shea hillenbrand for him in a heartbeat. But...David Bush, David Purcey [or] Zach Jackson? I'm not sure I like that at all. Overbay isn't that good. Just because you have a surplus doesn't mean you have to go bonkers. I would hate to lose a guy like Purcey or Jackson to get a "pretty good" hitter like Overbay. There's no way in my mind that the difference between Hillenbrand and Overbay is worth one of our best prospects. Or David Bush.
Rich - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 09:28 PM EST (#135115) #
Purcey I would not deal. Bush or Jackson and Hillenbrand for Overbay? Tough call. In the end, I'd do it for the following reasons:

1. The Jays don't have spots for all of their young pitchers
2. Overbay, although similar to Shea, is a superior player when it comes to OBP, which is the offense's biggest weakness in my view.
3. Overbay is 2 years younger and a good defender

I'd still love to see Nomar signed to DH and Wilkerson acquired, though it looks like the latter won't happen.
King Ryan - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 09:33 PM EST (#135117) #
The Blue Jays had the fourth best OBP in the league last year. Only the Red Sox, Yankees and Indians were better.

They were fourth WORST in SLG. Only the Mariners, Royals and Twins had less power than the Jays did.

http://www.hardballtimes.com/main/teams/
Waveburner - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 09:35 PM EST (#135118) #
Isn't OBP one of the Jays strengths and basically the biggest reason for them finishing fifth in runs scored? Or am I mistaken? Don't deal Bush/Jackson/Purcey unless it's a significant upgrade. No Mench/Gonzalez either, although Overbay is better than those two.
John Northey - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 09:38 PM EST (#135120) #
Lets look at the Yankees rotation...
Pitcher - Age in '06 - ERA+ 2005 ERA+ career

Randy Johnson - 42 - 117 142
Mike Mussina - 37 - 101 125
Carl Pavano - 30 - 93 100
Chien-Ming Wang - 26 - 111 111
Jaret Wright - 30 - 73 90
Shawn Chacon - 28 - 133 100
Aaron Small - 34 - 139 92
Tanyon Sturtze - 35 - 94 88
Wayne Franklin - 32 - 70 80
Sean Henn - 25 - 40 40
Scott Proctor - 29 - 74 77
Jorge DePaula - 27 - 55 111

So, a total of 5 pitchers under 30 and 7 over. 5 with an ERA+ of 100 or better in 2005, 6 with an ERA+ of 100 or better career. 4 with 100+ ERA+'s in both cases. Pretty darn good. However, only 2 of these guys qualified for the ERA title last year (Johnson & Mussina). 2 more got 100 innings in for the Yankees (Pavano & Wang) and one more had a total of 152 innings between NY and Colorado (Chacon).

Who's rotation would you rather have? Remember, the Jays have 6 guys with 100+ ERA+'s in both categories out of their 9 rotation potentials (Halladay, Burnett, Towers, Chacin, Batista, and Walker). Of those 6, 3 pitched over 200 innings last season while Halladay threw 142. Batista was in the pen as was Walker mainly, neither was DL'd. David Bush just missed this group with a 99 ERA+ in 2005 over 136 IP while Lilly cracked 100 IP but has an ERA+ of sub 100 both in 2005 and for his career. Don't forget also that Halladay/Burnett/Towers/Chacin/Bush are all under 30 as is McGowan. Walker and Batista are the only ones 31 or older.

Seems a no-brainer to me that the Jays have the stronger rotation. 1-2 punch for the Yankees is better, but not by a lot and age should take care of a batch of the spread.
VBF - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 09:43 PM EST (#135121) #
I know it's not my money and it's easy to say this, but for a guy like Manny, JP should be able to go up to Ted and say "Thank you for the generous pay increase, but if you could just see fit to throw us another 10s of millions I can bring a guy here who the team will jump upon his back and then be carried into the playoffs".

I *totally* agree with that. The pay increase is nice, but Ted giving another ten million on the condition that a Manny deal is in place would just skyrocket the team

Good on Rogers for the team commitment, but right now it helps to have an owner who is knowledgeable about baseball and can see the impact Manny would have. I'm not sure Ted sees this.

On a side note, ESPN ranks the Blue Jays as the 47th Ultimate Franchise.

King Ryan - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 09:46 PM EST (#135123) #
John, do you really think that Johnson/Mussina is going to be better than Halladay/Burnett next year? I'm not as high on Burnett as a lot of posters here, but I still say "no way" to that.
BrockLanders - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 09:55 PM EST (#135124) #
Mussina/Johnson = long past their prime
Burnett/Halladay= approaching their prime years

I think its a major mismatch.
Newton - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 10:16 PM EST (#135127) #
Here is the greatest sign the mighty Yanks pitching is in trouble: Wang is being considered an "untouchable" this offseason.

Wang is essentially Josh Towers in Pinstripes. He has the same low K rate and yields more walks (but did somehow yield less than a hit per inning) equating to a WHIP in the mid 1.2's.

This is probably more a sign of the economic reality that they can no longer continue spending a quarter billion dollars on payroll plus luxury taxes each season than it is a change of philosophy in their baseball operations but in offseason's past Wang would have been long gone by now.





Ducey - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 10:18 PM EST (#135128) #
Manny is a swell hitter but not good enough to make up for all his problems:
a) indifferent to pathetic defence
b) $20 million a year plus
c) all kinds of demands for who is on staff etc
d) constant complaining and pouting

Anyone in baseball could have had him a year ago for nothing - why do you think Boston is trying to get rid of him in the first place?
Rich - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 10:22 PM EST (#135130) #
The Jays were 4th in the AL in OBP last year, but that doesn't really tell the whole story:

2005 OBP: .331 (4th)
2004 OBP: .328 (12th)

Last year was a weak year for OBP overall in the AL. In the previous 3 years a .331 mark would have ranked between 7th and 10th. Yes, the Jays' SLG has been very weak for the past 2 seasons as well, but upgrading either the discipline or power (though preferably both) will help the offence. If JP can't get guys like Giles, Manny, or Abreu he needs to make a series of smaller improvements to the lineup - Overbay for Hillenbrand qualifies in my view.
Rich - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 10:25 PM EST (#135131) #
I don't think the Red Sox are "trying to get rid of Manny"; by all accounts he has asked to be traded. I'm sure they hate the contract they gave him, but as far as I know if he goes it's his own doing.
Mike D - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 10:28 PM EST (#135132) #
The Jays need slugging far more than they need OBP. Trading Hillenbrand and a very good prospect for Overbay does not make sense as the finishing touch on the '06 roster -- it doesn't even make much sense as a context-free, stand-alone move, because it's valuable that Shea can play third base.

It may, however, make sense if the trade is designed to free up money to pursue somebody else.
Ron - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 10:41 PM EST (#135133) #
"c) all kinds of demands for who is on staff etc"

Care to fill me in?

garth - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 10:42 PM EST (#135134) #
Look at it this way would you give up Adam Peterson and David Bush for Overbay. I would.

I like Shea but he is not the answer. Overbay is coming into his prime with probably 20-25 hr power and would be a decent #3 or #5 hitter. If this is not the final step in fixing the offence then I am in favour of it. However, I would rather give up batista and shea though.
Jonny German - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 10:43 PM EST (#135135) #
a starting rotation of two Hall of Famers (Johnson and Mussina)

As much as I know I should just gape in awe at these mighty and noble Hall of Famers (a combined 79 years young in 2006), I cant help but note that they were out-pitched in 2005 not only by Halladay and Burnett, but also by Towers and Chacin. A healthy Carl Pavano? Weve seen that twice in his 8-year career. Once it produced a 137 ERA+. The other time it produced a 94 ERA+.

I cant even bring myself to deride a bullpen that counts Tanyon Sturtze as an asset

Putting $20 million per season in Ryan and Burnett is all fine and dandy, but without any true offensive leaders I'm really concerned that this team will finish around the same place in run differential and be a more expensive, slightly better third place team.

Im still dying to hear what the World Champs had that the Jays dont. Or why the Jays should expect to score fewer runs in 2006 than they did in 2005 if they dont make any changes.

Mike Green - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 10:49 PM EST (#135136) #
There are a number of possibilities behind Koskie for third base other than Hillenbrand.

There is nothing wrong with improving OBP at first base and trading off a little OBP for slugging at another position. For instance, it is quite possible that Guillermo Quiroz or another catcher with a similar batting profile (.300-.310 OBP; .400-.420 slugging) may get 250-350 at-bats this year, with Zaun getting more rest. If Overbay is in the lineup instead of Hillenbrand, the offence will be in nice balance.
VBF - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 10:56 PM EST (#135137) #
Ron,

I don't know if this is what Ducey meant, but I believe in his Red Sox contract, there were a few really odd requirements involving clubhouse staff. Actually I think it was mentioned here that when he signed with the Sox, he insisted that a current clubhouse staff member be fired, and another one hired. I think this is the kind of baggage that can disrupt things a bit. I don't know the extent of bizarre contract things like that though--only the one.

But, I'd happily take Manny everyday.
Rich - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 10:56 PM EST (#135138) #
Is it just me, or is anyone else surprised that Rios's name hasn't come up in discussions with the Brewers? Ash drafted him (I believe) and their outfield / DH situation is a bit thin - Jenkins, Clark, Lee and a cast of thousands.
rtcaino - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 10:58 PM EST (#135139) #
""The Jays need slugging far more than they need OBP. Trading Hillenbrand and a very good prospect for Overbay does not make sense as the finishing touch on the '06 roster -- it doesn't even make much sense as a context-free, stand-alone move, because it's valuable that Shea can play third base.""

An improvement is an improvement is an improvement. We have enough third basemen. Koskie, Hinske, and Hill can all ply third if needed.
King Ryan - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:00 PM EST (#135140) #
Of course an improvement in any area is good. As I said, I would trade Hillenbrand for Overbay in a heartbeat. But I do NOT think that a trade like that is worth losing a pitcher like David Purcey over.

Mike D - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:02 PM EST (#135141) #
I agree with King Ryan. That's why sometimes an improvement isn't really an improvement.
VBF - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:07 PM EST (#135143) #
Looking like its a done deal.

From rotoworld:

The Boston Herald is reporting that Lyle Overbay will be traded to Toronto for Shea Hillenbrand and David Bush. A nice trade for Toronto in our opinion, mainly because Hillenbrand has little value at the salary he'll command in arbitration. The Brewers will likely spin Hillenbrand off to another team and hand first base to Prince Fielder.

Nick - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:09 PM EST (#135146) #
"their outfield / DH situation is a bit thin "

The Brewers play in the National League. There is no DH in the National League.
King Ryan - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:12 PM EST (#135147) #
If that's the trade, then I really don't like it on the surface.
We have this pitcher named David Bush. He's 25 years old and has pitched 234 innings with an ERA well above average. If he's not going to be used to help the team, he's possibly the Jays' best trading chip. And we're going to fritter him away so we can marginally improve at first base?

Lyle Overbay is not enough of an improvement over Hillenbrand to lose David Bush over. Yikes. The only way I like this trade is if it frees up salary to make a much better deal.
RhyZa - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:14 PM EST (#135148) #
well I'm anticipating some to be upset with it, and I'm one of those that liked Bush as well but I can live with this (it's always tough giving up prospects that you follow for so long, but it's an inevitability). Also I'm banking on Newton here who is clearly a big Overbay backer, and would've done a McGowan swap in a minute as discussed a few days ago... for what it's worth I think Overbay will outproduce Hillenbrand by a lot more than last year, more along the previous years, if not more.
Waveburner - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:17 PM EST (#135149) #
Booo. Agree with King Ryan. Overbay is not worth trading a young pitcher like Bush for. I think we get hosed unless this is to clear salary for other moves. There are other salaries and players I'd much rather move. Very meh. Another left-handed bat as well.
Mike T - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:21 PM EST (#135150) #
Blair says it's Z.Jackson and Bush now, no Hillenbrand?
JayWay - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:21 PM EST (#135151) #
At least we didn't give up Purcey or Jackson.

I only like this deal if it's complimented by another bat, say Nomar or Thomas.

If all we come away with from these meetings is Overbay (offensively speaking), then we'd of been better off keeping all of our eggs in the pitching basket and thus keeping Bush.
rtcaino - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:23 PM EST (#135152) #
Kind Ryan, I agree that Purcey would not hvae been worth it in the trade. As it stands, I like this trade. Keep it comming JP.
rtcaino - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:24 PM EST (#135154) #
""According to sources, the Brewers asked for pitchers Dave Bush and Zach Jackson in return for Overbay, a left-hand hitting first baseman. The Blue Jays agreed and were awaiting a return call from the Brewers.""

I would rather loose Shea than Zach Jack.
Newton - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:25 PM EST (#135155) #
RhyZa, I hope Overbay proves me right with his performance for the Jays next season.

It seems, according to Blair on the Score, that the Red Sox were hot on our heels in pursuing Overbay.

I'd be happy with an .850 OPS and solid defence from Overbay this season and hope he cracks the 20 HR barrier for the first time.

I believe this is a guy who can draw 90 walks and score 90-100 runs, cashing in a like number if he bats 3rd for us.

The deal also frees some money to pursue an additional bat and leaves us with plenty of ammo for future trades.

I do not want to see Hinske DHing in Hillenbrands absence and think we should find a veteran FA to fill that role, using our remaining trade resources to acquire a corner OF with some pop.



Nick - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:27 PM EST (#135156) #
I see what you guys are saying about Bush, but you have to look at the whole picture. With so many young pitchers coming up, the Jays have a surplus. There are only so many spots on the roster. They can't all play for the Jays. We have little idea as to what other teams are demanding for available players. Granted, Lyle Overbay is not Bobby Abreu or Manny Ramirez. But to get great players like that you give up Vernon Wells, not Dave Bush. I think the $2-3 million in payroll will be valuable, be it now or in July. I'm not saying this is a slam dunk, but I think this works - especially if we are getting the 53 doubles 2004 Overbay. There is still more to come. I would be shocked to see Miguel Batista in a Jays uniform next year, so there could be a big hitter on the way later on.
Jordan - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:29 PM EST (#135158) #
This is getting confusing. From Blair's updated blog:

According to sources, the Brewers asked for pitchers Dave Bush and Zach Jackson in return for Overbay, a left-hand hitting first baseman. The Blue Jays agreed and were awaiting a return call from the Brewers.

In addition to having a shot at Overbay, the Blue Jays remain convinced that they can land free-agent Nomar Garciparra.

That, folks, would be a whole lotta infielders.

VBF - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:30 PM EST (#135159) #
I would think that Brad Arnsberg gave the OK to deal Bush, and if there's anyone I want giving the OK, its Arnsberg.

But now we have 3 first basemen with Washington recently dealing Wilkerson. JP must have something cooking.
Nick - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:31 PM EST (#135160) #
Unless they stick Nomar in RF. He is said to be willing to play any position. If we had Cat in LF and Nomar in RF, Vernon would really have to work to earn that GG in 2006.
Dave Till - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:31 PM EST (#135161) #
Fascinating trade, if it goes through. Overbay and Hillenbrand are almost identical players, except in two important ways:

- Overbay's OBP is about 30 points higher.

- He is about $3 million cheaper.

I like David Bush, but his K/IP isn't great, and he's homer-prone. And the money saved gives the Jays financial room to pick up a big bat for the DH slot.
CaramonLS - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:32 PM EST (#135162) #
Question for those not happy with the projected deal:

In order to make this trade worthwhile, lets say Bush and Hillenbrand, what line would Overbay have to produce?

For me, if Overbay reproduces his 2004 line .301/.385/.478, I'd be more than happy with this trade, even if Bush puts up a season similar to his rookie year.

He hits a line similar to an .830-.840 OPS I would say it would be worthwhile.

Just my opinion.
RhyZa - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:34 PM EST (#135163) #
no wonder we were out of the running for Wilkerson... so much movement at these meetings, it's not even so much for need anymore as it is get the best value, and if theres a logjam figure out another trade later on (Vidro, Mench?).
Nick - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:35 PM EST (#135164) #
If the trade is actually Jackson and Bush, it seems like the Jays are taking Leigh's philosophy to heart. (I think it was Leigh who said the other day he'd be in favor of trading away all pitching prospects to get major league talent right now.)

I'll have to sleep on this to figure out how much I like/dislike this.
John Northey - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:35 PM EST (#135165) #
Lyle Overbay will be traded to Toronto for Shea Hillenbrand and David Bush

Interesting. Bush I've liked a lot but his K rate is just 5.3 per 9 innings, which is fairly poor and he dropped last year to 4.95. As a rule pitchers below 5 do not survive long in the majors (there are exceptions of course). Losing Bush would suck, but is understandable given the massive surplus of pitching the Jays have at the moment. Shea is excess if Overbay is aquired. Overbay, in his 2 1/2 years in the majors has had OBP's of 365, 385, and 367 and Slg of 402, 478, and 449. Only the Cat had an OBP above 360 last year (367). Zaun was the only other one above 345 at 355. OBP, while a strength overall, is not something the Jays have an excess of.

As a reference, Shea's OBP are 291, 330,314,348,343 and Slg of 391,459,468,464,449. I suspect Shea could have a better Slg, but I think Overbay has to be viewed as the favorite there. In OBP Overbay will almost have to do better than Shea based on history.

Checking Baseball Prospectus I see an adjusted EQA of 284 for Overbay (career 283) vs Shea at 279 (career 266). Overbay is 1 year younger and further from free agency.

Hrm. I like Overbay over Shea one on one. Is it enough to justify giving up Bush though? Seems a bit high but given Bush is excess at this point for the Jays I guess it is a case of paying a bit extra from your pitching fund which is overflowing to assist your hitting fund which is fairly dry. Guess we'll see if it happens.

Waveburner - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:35 PM EST (#135166) #
Why move Jackson and Bush for another infielder? While still having Hinske and Hillenbrand around? Besides the fact Overbay isn't worth the 2 of Jackson and Bush, it creates positional and salary problems. Doesn't make any sense to me at all.
RhyZa - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:35 PM EST (#135167) #
this is one of the few times I wish Blair is wrong.
Jonny German - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:36 PM EST (#135168) #
Oy... I sure hope it isn't Jackson & Bush. I could live with Hillenbrand & Bush - I wouldn't necessarily expect the Jays to win that version either, but it would upgrade the 2006 team and reduce payroll.

There's always hope that the rumours aren't quite right or that something changes at the last second. Speier-Hendrickson was rumoured to be Speier-Reed Johnson right up until it was announced.
braden - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:37 PM EST (#135169) #
Rotoworld is reporting that Alfonso Soriano has been traded to Washington for Termell Sledge, Wilkerson and a PTBNL.
King Ryan - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:37 PM EST (#135170) #
Nick, as I said earlier, just because you have a surplus doesn't mean you should just waste them all away. David Bush -- a 25 year old with pinpoint control -- should have some significant trade value. Giving him to the Brewers so we can upgrade from Hillenbrand to Overbay is a waste, in my opinion. We just lost our best trading chip* and all we got was Lyle Overbay? Maybe I'm overrating Bush, but that's terribly disappointing in my opinion.

I think too many fans are getting caught up in the "WIN NOW" mentality and are acting like these young players are worthless. The future is still important.

And if it's Zach Jackson instead of Shea then that makes even less sense. Yes, let's trade away a good young starter and our fastest-rising prospect so that we can add to our infield logjam. Bah.

I trust that JP has a plan in place. I trust that JP has a plan in place. I trust that JP has a plan in place.

*Assuming O-Dawg is untouchable, here.
Jonny German - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:43 PM EST (#135172) #
That's a steal for Texas if accurate.
King Ryan - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:43 PM EST (#135173) #
What an absolutely terrific trade by the Rangers, by the way. I am in awe.
Rich - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:43 PM EST (#135174) #
"There is no DH in the National League".

That's a very, very, very good point. Maybe I've just been on this thread too long.

I can live with Overbay for Bush and Jackson, given the pitching depth the Jays have (notably Purcey, McGowan, Banks, Janssen, and Rosario).

Kudos to Jeff Blair for keeping us updated day and night. The Star's site hasn't been updated since noon, and the Sun's is currently down for maintenance. Not only is Blair the most knowledgeable and fairest of the TO baseball writers, but he also seems to be the most dedicated at being on top of things are keeping fans informed.
crush_99 - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:44 PM EST (#135175) #
Here is another possible twist there is a report out of Minesota that the twins are investigating a 3 way trade with the jays and bucks...
to quote
"The Twins also are believed to be discussing a three-way deal with Milwaukee and Toronto. The Twins likely would supply Milwaukee with pitching, the Brewers would send Lyle Overbay to Toronto and the Blue Jays would send the Twins a hitter, possibly Shea Hillenbrand."

here is the link...
http://www.startribune.com/stories/509/5770108.html

This sure is a fun offseason..
BCMike - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:45 PM EST (#135176) #

Rotoworld is reporting that Alfonso Soriano has been traded to Washington for Termell Sledge, Wilkerson and a PTBNL.

If the Jays had anything serious going on Mench, I wonder if JP can convince Texas to flip Wilkerson.

As for Overbay, not really thrilled about it, seems like half a step forward and two steps sideways. Hopefully the deal was done to open up other options.

Named For Hank - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:45 PM EST (#135177) #
(I think it was Leigh who said the other day he'd be in favor of trading away all pitching prospects to get major league talent right now.)

I'm in favour of it, too: isn't that the whole point of building up such a surplus of it?

If you make a whole lot of money and then starve to death because you didn't buy any food with it (because then you wouldn't have the money!!) you're foolish.
Nick - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:45 PM EST (#135178) #
Yes, Bush has good control, but as it has been pointed out, his career K/9 rate is about 5. He has trade value, but not significant trade value in my view. I don't know, everything is preliminary and unconfirmed at this point. I'm not sure what I think. I am going to wait for the dust to settle before I say much more.
JayWay - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:46 PM EST (#135179) #
I can only assume Blair is wrong on this one. I can't see JP trading Bush and Jackson for Overbay. Not only are we stuck with another infielder, but we miss out on the one benefit that justified a Shea/Bush trade - freed up salary.

If it's true, I just hope JP knows what he's doing and has another deal involving Shea lined up.
actionjackson - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:47 PM EST (#135181) #
What about Hinske or Cat strictly in a platoon role with a strong LHP masher like Matthew LeCroy? I'm with everyone about dumping Hinske for a bag of baseballs, but he might be immovable, and he's decent against RHP. Is it possible to pick up $3mil in his salary over each of the next two years in order to get more than a bag of baseballs, just to wipe $2mil more off the books in '06 and '07. In other words, how much do we have to pay before someone will give us something reasonable in return. As for Overbay, I don't like his overall power, but at least he's a lefty, who doesn't completely disappear against LHP. In fact his ISO power is slightly higher against LHP over the last 3 years, and he's an on base machine against RHP, but not so much against LHP. Batting averages dead even. Sounds like a guy who doesn't need to be benched against one side or the other, and he's cheap. Anybody need a pitcher (sorry no more young cheapies) or a 1st baseman? Let's make another deal! We've got to clear some salary.
King Ryan - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:49 PM EST (#135183) #
A surplus can become a drought very quickly if you're not careful. Remember when the Jays had an outfielder surplus?

Bush's K-rate isn't good, but his walk-rate is. I like him more than Chacin. Personal preference though, I guess.
garth - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:50 PM EST (#135184) #
If the trade is Jackson and Bush then I don't like it. At least giving up Shea would free up money to get another bat. We would have 6 infielders (all average bat's)?

There would have to be a Shea or Koskie to L.A deal as discussed earlier in the thread. The more I think about it the less I like it.
greenfrog - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:51 PM EST (#135186) #
I like the deal for Overbay. I don't like losing Jackson and Bush, but I don't mind it either. We're keeping McGowan, Purcey, Romero, Banks, and Janssen--guys I like more. I'm not convinced Bush or Jackson will ever be more than a respectable #4 starter. Overbay is relatively young, cheap, and a decent hitter who gets on base significantly more than Hillenbrand.

I really hope that JP can find a way to include Hinske in one of these trades.
Dave Till - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:51 PM EST (#135187) #
The Twins trading pitching, and the Jays trading hitting? That reporter sounds like he's in Upside Down Land.

I think I'm going to make up my own rumour. Hillenbrand to the Nippon Ham Fighters. Overbay to the Jays. Sixteen cases of finest quality Japanese pork products (since ham and cheese go well together) and a crateload of yen to the Brewers. Confirm or deny!
RhyZa - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:51 PM EST (#135188) #
I wish that 3 way has some legs to stand on. Looks like we'd have to give up less in that scenario.
GeoffAtMac - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:51 PM EST (#135189) #
This is all very interesting...

Next year's infield lineup as of now:

1B/3B: Corey Koskie, Shea Hillenbrand, Eric Hinske, Lyle Overbay, Aaron Hill

2B: O-Dog

SS: Russ Adams

Hmm...it seems like we must be getting ready to pull off something bigger, but what?
Mark - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:52 PM EST (#135190) #
Rosenthal is reporting Bush, Gross and Jackson for Overbay.

http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/story/5148464
VBF - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:53 PM EST (#135191) #
Fwiw, the Star Tribune article was written at 9:55pm, before Blair and rotoworld.

I love the three way deal, but I think that was the initial thought.
RhyZa - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:55 PM EST (#135193) #
wow, keeps getting worse and worse. who next, O Dog....
Nick - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:55 PM EST (#135194) #
The Jays really jerked Bush around last year. I think they may have soured on him. He likely would have started the season in Toronto as a middle reliever/long man in low leverage situations. I wouldn't have minded a Lilly non-tender and putting Bush in the rotation myself.
garth - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:55 PM EST (#135195) #
I don't trust much of what Rosenthal says. It better be a good prospect we get from milwalkee if this is the trade.

Talk about overpaying - I thought J.P was the bright one, not ash.
CaramonLS - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:55 PM EST (#135196) #
Mark, you missed the most interesting part:

"Lyle Overbay and a prospect from the Brewers" from the article..

I wonder who it could be?
crush_99 - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:56 PM EST (#135197) #
Dave Till ... I just saw it so I thought I'd report it... the rumours are flying fast and furious it looks like something is happening.... personally I also hope it is the twins 3 way but I doubt it...
BCMike - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:56 PM EST (#135198) #
Wonder who the Brewers prospect is.
actionjackson - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:56 PM EST (#135199) #
Oh and please not Jackson AND Bush. How about Hillenbrand or Batista and one of the above? Understandably, if we asked them to take on more salary, we should probably have to cough up Bush as unpalatable as it is. If you want to get rid of salary, sometimes you have to pair it with cheap talent and hope you have some more on the way, which we just might have.
Mark - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:56 PM EST (#135200) #
Unless the prospect is Weekes this is awful.
JC - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:57 PM EST (#135201) #
Rosenthal is reporting Bush, Gross and Jackson for Overbay.

Awful, awful, AWFUL trade.
BrockLanders - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:57 PM EST (#135202) #
JP, played the role of the bank teller on this trade.
Matthew E - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:58 PM EST (#135203) #
I'd like to point out the conceptual similarity between the following surnames:

Overbay
Upshaw

That is all.
garth - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:58 PM EST (#135204) #
bush, gross, jackson, and mcgowan could have got us Dunn.
Mark - Wednesday, December 07 2005 @ 11:59 PM EST (#135206) #
Seriously, it has to be a good prospect, one of the hitting variety and equal to Jackson in grade. Or maybe JP needs to sleep before making decisions like this.
BrockLanders - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:00 AM EST (#135207) #
This sounds like the Prokopec deal all over again.
Ron - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:00 AM EST (#135208) #
I need to see who the prospect is before I can really judge this trade.

Also I expect Hillenbrand to be dealt.

Hopefully Gabe Gross gets a chance to show what he can do on a more regular basis with the brew crew.
greenfrog - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:01 AM EST (#135209) #
But Dunn is going to pull down big bucks over the next few seasons. And McGowan is the best of the four players you mentioned.
Dave Till - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:01 AM EST (#135210) #
I think the reporters are punch-drunk and are just tossing names out at random.

I don't have a problem with the Jays trading two or three top-line pitching prospects. That's why J.P. stockpiled them: the plan all along was to obtain bats for arms, since there weren't many good free-agent hitters coming along.

The Jays won't have room for all of McGowan, Marcum, Purcey, Jackson, Janssen, Banks, and Bush. And I'm sure I missed some.
Mark - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:04 AM EST (#135211) #
I wish I went to bed half an hour ago.
GeoffAtMac - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:04 AM EST (#135212) #
Perhaps JP has traded Jackson because someone will nab in him the Rule 5 draft? Or is that not a possibility?

Maybe the prospect is Prince Fielder. (I'm joking, of course.)
Dave Till - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:05 AM EST (#135213) #
Hey, crush_99, no worries: I wasn't knocking you, just commenting on the report.

Good night, everybody. By morning, we'll discover that Overbay was acquired for three tubs of poutine and seven cases of authentic Canadian beer. Chow down, Milwaukee!
Rob - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:06 AM EST (#135214) #
This sounds like the Prokopec deal all over again.

How, exactly? Did Dave Bush turn into a 32 year old middle reliever when I wasn't looking?

actionjackson - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:07 AM EST (#135215) #
OK, I get it a bunch of delirious, haggard, caffeine-fried reporters are tieing one on in the main bar. You better watch out, Halladay might get thrown in for prospects. C'MON!
garth - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:09 AM EST (#135216) #

There is 70% chance Mcgowan will be very good. Dunn is already great. You have to give up quality for quality.

That is why I don't understand the proposed gross/jackson/bush trade for a slightly above average player - we are overpaying. With shea and bush - I liked the trade. As of now 6 infielders does not solve our problem. Unless there is something big coming?

greenfrog - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:10 AM EST (#135218) #
Overbay's career line: .285/.373/.450. The stats inc scouting report on him (pre-2005):


2004 Season

Lyle Overbay was the key position player obtained by the Brewers in the Richie Sexson trade with Arizona before the season. While Sexson suffered an early season-ending injury, Overbay emerged as a very pleasant surprise. Beginning in late April, he amassed an 18-game hitting streak in which he batted .471, and he was hitting .330 with 21 doubles in 49 games by the end of May. When he finished his first full big league season, Overbay led the majors and broke Robin Yount's franchise record with 53 doubles.


Hitting

Overbay is a first baseman in the tradition of Mark Grace and Sean Casey-not a power hitter, but a man who can hit .305 with 45 doubles, while driving in and scoring 90 runs. In the absence of any available candidate who could hit for power, manager Ned Yost plugged him into the No. 4 slot early in 2004. Overbay responded with a big first half before coming back to earth after the All-Star break.


Baserunning & Defense

Defense is an important part of Overbay's game. In an infield that saw more than its share of shuffling last season, Overbay provided some stability. No Brewer second baseman had more than 41 double plays, but Overbay recorded 110. Possessed of average speed, he attempted only three stolen bases, but Overbay ran well enough to set the Brewers' team record for doubles.


2005 Outlook

Teams can win championships with guys like Overbay at first base, if they have power from their catcher, center fielder, right fielder or shortstop. For 2005 and beyond, he should remain a valuable and productive player. But because the Brewers are short on power, and top prospect Prince Fielder really can play only first base, it's unlikely that Overbay still will be at that position for Milwaukee in 2006.
crush_99 - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:12 AM EST (#135219) #
Too much info and not enough fact - my guess is that it ain't caffine the reporters are drinking... sounds like something stronger...

Blair is supposed to be on the score soon (or so they have said)... I think I hold on till then before calling it a night.
Mylegacy - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:13 AM EST (#135220) #
Chill everybody.

Bush smush. Gross who? Zach's Bush at BEST.

Roy, AJ, McGowan, Romero, Purcey THIS IS THE FUTURE! Bush, Zack, Jannsen, Vermillyea etal are side shows. OK, but no big deals. We got em to trade em. And it's working.

Chill children. Mellow...
BrockLanders - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:13 AM EST (#135221) #
Rob's right. I'm hyperventilating from ghosts of Riccardi past. In all seriousness, Was this the best he could do???
Mark - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:15 AM EST (#135223) #
Wilner on the fan said jays are announcing a trade at 12:30 and he has heard everything from Shea, Rios, Jackson and so on. Also said there are rumours that texas will get pitching from the jays for Wilkerson.
crush_99 - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:15 AM EST (#135224) #
scratch that last comment - I am pretty sure they said Blair would be on but it looks like they have some raptors and nhl talk first... And since he said sam mitchell is next I am guesing this may be pre-taped (since raptors are playing now).
CaramonLS - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:17 AM EST (#135225) #
Dave Bush Currently is the #6 Starter on this team.

Gabe Gross is the #5 OF on this team.

Jackson is probably at best going to be a stop gap waiting for Purcey and Romero.

Do they all have upside?

Yes, they do. But I think most of you are severely overvaluing Bush's value to the rest of the league.

rtcaino - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:19 AM EST (#135226) #
I dunno if saying Bush being Zach's ceiling is fair.

Hopefully we can nab Wilkerson from Texas. We'll see.

Did Wilner say 12:30 today or tomorrow?
Named For Hank - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:19 AM EST (#135227) #
A surplus can become a drought very quickly if you're not careful. Remember when the Jays had an outfielder surplus?

Was it a position of strength that they traded away to address a deficit in another area of the team? Or did a bunch of them just not pan out?

There's a new general Winter Meetings thread up now, and once the 12:30 press conference happens I'll make a separate thread for that so the reaction doesn't clutter up everything else.
zaptom - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:19 AM EST (#135229) #
A swiss soccer player was once traded for his weight in shrimp. I kid you not. Which means Hinskie might very well be traded for baseballs... or maybe something edible...
BrockLanders - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:21 AM EST (#135231) #
JP just traded Bush (4.15 ERA/1.23 WHIP in 234 major league innings), Gross (another first rounder), Jackson (former supp. first rounder) for a power deprived first baseman who sports a nice OBP.
greenfrog - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:22 AM EST (#135232) #
Do we really want Wilkerson? I realize he's versatile, and was good from 2002-2004, but he fell off pretty badly last year, and he strikes out a ton (about 150-160 times each of the last 4 years).
Nick - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:22 AM EST (#135233) #
For those about to throw themselves in front of a train, consider this, courtesy Bill Simmons of ESPN Page 2:

"Still, those Bagwell/Andersen disasters are the exception, not the rule -- it's much harder to project the fates of minor-league prospects than you might think. For instance, the Boston Globe's Nick Cafardo wrote a column in August 1990 that featured the following quote from a National League scout: "Boston's got good depth. They're sneaking into the top 10 pitching organizations in baseball. As far as lefties go, they're as good as anyone."

Well, here were the top-10 pitchers in Boston's system (according to Cafardo's article): Dave Owen ("he's chunky but tough"); Derek Livernois ("a young Mike Boddicker"); Josias Manzanillo; Kevin Morton; Paul Quantrill; Scott Taylor; Jeff Plympton; Brian Conroy; Tom Fischer; Eric Hetzel. And just for kicks, the No. 1 positional prospect (ahead of Bagwell and Mo Vaughn) was an outfielder named Greg Blosser, about whom Cafardo wrote, "The mouths drop when people see him." Out of those 11 players, the only guy who had anything remotely resembling a career was Quantrill, a half-decent reliever who bounced around both leagues for 14 seasons. Nobody else made it."

This is an excerpt from his article on the Beckett trade:

http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=simmons/051122

Guys - the Jays do not have a top-rated farm system. None of the 3 players given up in the deal (as reported by Rosenthal) are top-flight prospects. To call it terrible right now is silly, I think. I really don't think most Jays' prospects are as valued by other teams as you think. I admit, I cringed. It's more than I thought was necessary to get Overbay, but what do I know. I'm not talking to other MLB GM's so I don't have a great feel for the market for Jays' minor leaguers. But nothing is official. Let's see what happens from here.
GeoffAtMac - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:22 AM EST (#135235) #
The Jays will be announcing a trade at 12:30 tonight (like in ten minutes), or 12:30 tomorrow (like in 12 hours).

Once again -- does anybody know if we traded Jackson because he isn't protected from Rule 5 selection?
Mark - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:24 AM EST (#135237) #
12:30 AM
King Ryan - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:26 AM EST (#135239) #
Dave Bush Currently is the #6 Starter on this team.

According to whom? I like him as the fourth starter. I think some of you are severely underrating him. The guy had a terrific rookie year, and was solid through most of last year save for some blowups against the Red Sox. I think he'll be better than Chacin next year and he has a decent chance of outperforming Lilly, too. Furthermore, he's only 25 and he makes the league minimum.

What are we trading him for? Why not deal Lilly or Batista?

I can't stand this random attitude that suddenly all our young arms are worthless. Hey, we have a SURPLUS! So let's just deal it all away! Who cares who we get in return! We have a SURPLUS!

GeoffAtMac - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:27 AM EST (#135240) #
My first sentence should have ended with a question mark.
6-4-3 - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:28 AM EST (#135242) #
No, Jackson was protected from the Rule 5 until after next season, when he would've had three years minor league experience with the team. After that, if he wasn't on the 40 man roster he could've been selected.
danjulien - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:28 AM EST (#135243) #
Zach Jackson did not have to be protected in rule 5...an if he would have to be, we would have!
Terminator - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:30 AM EST (#135245) #
Hey all, first post
Way too much pitching to give up for Overbay if this rumour is true.... I hope Overbay impresses, but I'm not sold on this deal in a market where pitching is so highly valued. Why not bundle our prospects with salary and do something bigger? Still stuck with average infielders and no salary dump (yet). Also, what's the rush? Just because its winter meetings today, doesn't mean we have to give up the farm before the week is over. When you have strength, you can afford to hold your cards for a while. I think JP just fell in love with a player - classic mistake - and in his words, "Overbay is one of the guys we 'targeted'"....
Hope I'm wrong.
Terminator - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:30 AM EST (#135246) #
Hey all, first post
Way too much pitching to give up for Overbay if this rumour is true.... I hope Overbay impresses, but I'm not sold on this deal in a trade market where pitching is so highly valued. Why not bundle our prospects with salary and do something bigger? Still stuck with average infielders and no salary dump (yet). Also, what's the rush? Just because its winter meetings today, doesn't mean we have to give up the farm before the week is over. When you have strength, you can afford to hold your cards for a while. I think JP just fell in love with a player - classic mistake - and in his words, "Overbay is one of the guys we 'targeted'"....
Hope I'm wrong.
Named For Hank - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:31 AM EST (#135247) #
I can't stand this random attitude that suddenly all our young arms are worthless. Hey, we have a SURPLUS! So let's just deal it all away! Who cares who we get in return! We have a SURPLUS!

Who's saying that? The only posts I see are "let's not be afraid to trade them for something we need that can help us". No one is suggesting that the Jays should just get rid of them for nothing.

My allegory about the guy with a lot of money who dies because he doesn't buy food (because he wouldn't have the money anymore!!) is still appropriate.
Rich - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:33 AM EST (#135249) #
Dave Bush Currently is the #6 Starter on this team.

According to JP, actually. Yesterday he said that at the moment the rotation is Doc, AJ, Gus, Batista, and Towers. He didn't mention Lilly. It may have been on mlb radio that he said this; I can't recall, but Bush wasn't in the list. If you add Lilly to this Bush would be #7.

Named For Hank - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:34 AM EST (#135251) #
Also, what's the rush? Just because its winter meetings today, doesn't mean we have to give up the farm before the week is over.

The Jays played wait-and-see last year and got almost nothing. This year they've learned from that mistake.
CaramonLS - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:35 AM EST (#135252) #
Bush is behind:

Halladay
Burnett
Lilly
Chacin
Towers

(Bush)

(Downs)

You'd seriously put him ahead of Chacin or even Towers at this point?

Maybe if you based your rankings strictly on Potential. You get what you earn at this level, Bush hasn't earned much.

Dave Bush hasn't proven himself at the Major league level yet.

Mick Doherty - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:37 AM EST (#135255) #
Peter Gammons is reporting that Texas has traded Alfonso Soriano to Washington for outfielders Brad Wilkerson and Terrmel Sledge and a minor leaguer to be named later, reportedly righthander Armando Galarraga.
GeoffAtMac - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:41 AM EST (#135260) #
I assume everybody else saw that Boston offered Matt Clement in exchange for Overbay? Wow. Maybe Overbay holds more open-market value than one might guess.
GeoffAtMac - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:42 AM EST (#135261) #
I assume everybody else saw that Boston offered Matt Clement in exchange for Overbay? Wow. Maybe Overbay holds more open-market value than one might guess.
RhyZa - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:43 AM EST (#135262) #
I can't rationalize having to throw Zach in this deal as well. Would be a great deal for the Brewers, they have a bright future, but seems like an awful lot of trading chips JP gave up. Maybe we can flip Shea to the Twins if Blalock doesn't happen for them.
Mylegacy - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:43 AM EST (#135263) #
If Rosario and McGowan's arms hadden't fallen off you'd never have seen Bush in the bigs. By now JP expected to have Roy and twin aces R & McG anchoring the team. Injuries happen.

Bush is good. He and Zach and some to the other control guys like Marcum can become Towers or a little better. NOT BAD, but not ace. McGowan is ACE, almost can't miss. And at least one of Purcey or Romero is ace, or very close.

I'm happy.
Mylegacy - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:47 AM EST (#135268) #
JUST IN FROM THE GLOBE:

Jays trade Bush, Jackson for Overbay

DALLAS (11:10 CT) Acquiring Lyle Overbay from the Milwaukee Brewers is just the beginning of general manager J.P. Ricciardi's plans to overhaul the Toronto Blue Jays offence.

The Blue Jays acquired Overbay and a player to be named later early Thursday morning for pitchers Dave Bush and Zach Jackson, a first-round pick in 2004, and outfielder Gabe Gross. Today, they are expected to try and pry Brad Wilkerson away from the Texas Rangers, after they acquired him, Terrmel Sledge and a player to be named later in a deal that sent Alfonso Soriano to the Washington Nationals.

The Blue Jays spent much of Wednesday waiting for the Nationals to get back to them about Wilkerson, who they would play in right field. At one point, they were even trying to cobble together a three-team deal including the Cincinnati Reds that would have seen Wily Mo Pena go to the Nationals.

With Overbay, Shea Hillenbrand and Eric Hinske, the Blue Jays have a surplus of first basemen. The team is now prepared to eat part of Hinske's contract to move him, sources say, and outfielder Alex Rios and pitcher Miguel Batista will also be shopped around before the winter meetings end today. The Brewers asked the Blue Jays for Jackson and Bush initially. The deal dragged on when the Brewers pressed for the addition of Gross, who had a strong spring training but couldn't carry it over to the regular season.

It figures to be a busy day for the Blue Jays.

iains - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:50 AM EST (#135272) #
Fresh from Blair's blog
The Blue Jays acquired Overbay and a player to be named later early Thursday morning for pitchers Dave Bush and Zach Jackson, a first-round pick in 2004, and outfielder Gabe Gross. Today, they are expected to try and pry Brad Wilkerson away from the Texas Rangers, after they acquired him, Terrmel Sledge and a player to be named later in a deal that sent Alfonso Soriano to the Washington Nationals.
Named For Hank - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:50 AM EST (#135273) #
There's a thread for the Overbay trade and a new thread for other Winter Meetings activity.
Terminator - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 12:52 AM EST (#135276) #
hey NFH,

Also, what's the rush? Just because its winter meetings today, doesn't mean we have to give up the farm before the week is over.

The Jays played wait-and-see last year and got almost nothing. This year they've learned from that mistake.

--- fair point I guess, and I agree that being aggressive in the Free Agent market is necessary because when the FA's are gone, they're gone,, but trades can always be worked at as they become most advantageous...
One other point, has JP effectively reduced the trade value for Koskie, Hillenbrand now? By doing this deal first, other GM's know more than ever before that we have to get rid of a corner infieder or 3. The only way our guys' value doesn't go down is if we get a bidding war, and I don't think anyone sees that happening.
King Ryan - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 01:04 AM EST (#135294) #
NFH, How about

"Bush smush. Gross who? Zach's Bush at BEST."

Suddenly it's "Prospects? Who cares!!" We're becoming the New York F'n Yankees.
Ryan C - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 01:24 AM EST (#135320) #
We're becoming the New York F'n Yankees.

Overbay is 28 and still cheap. Im pretty sure it's against the law to compare a team to the Yankees unless the players they acquire are significantly older and more expensive than that. And last I checked Bush and Gross were only 2 years younger than Overbay.

Named For Hank - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 08:35 AM EST (#135375) #
Also, what's the rush? Just because its winter meetings today, doesn't mean we have to give up the farm before the week is over.

If you mean that these three are the best prospects on the farm and now it's in shambles... well, I beg to differ. As to the rush, I pointed out (I think in the other Winter Meetings thread, but it could have been in this one) that the Jays played wait-and-see last year with a similar amount of money to spend and got virtually nothing. They learned from their mistake.
Named For Hank - Thursday, December 08 2005 @ 08:39 AM EST (#135377) #
King Ryan, that post doesn't say that they want to ditch all the prospects for nothing -- it says that those three are not the crown jewels of the system, which is true.

If the Jays are in trouble because they lost Gross, Jackson and Bush in a trade, they were in trouble before, too.

They were good prospects who cannot help the Toronto Blue Jays at this time. You stockpile prospects with value in order to use them later either on your team or to trade for parts that you haven't developed. There's nothing wrong with that.
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