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Today marked the end of the line for several Jays MILB Players including 2007 Draft Picks Kevin Ahrens, and John Tolisano.  As well Alan Farina, and Joel Carreno were let go, which might be somewhat suprising.

Toronto Blue Jays
Chad Beck (AA), Tyson Brummett (AA), Buddy Carlyle (AAA), Joel Carreno (AAA), Alan Farina (AA), Marcus Walden (AA)
LHP: Willie Collazo* (AA),
C: Brian Compton (Lo A)
1B: Luis A. Jimenez (AAA), Clint Robinson (AAA), Jon Talley (AA)
2B: Daniel Arcila (SS), Oliver Dominguez (Hi A), Jim Negrych (AAA), John Tolisano (AA), Lance Zawadzki (AA)
3B: Kevin Ahrens (AA)
SS: Mike McCoy (AAA), Amadeo Zazueta (AA)
OF: Blake Gailen (AAA), Adam Loewen (AA), Ricardo Nanita (AAA)

With Reference to
Blue Jays 2013 MILB Free Agents | 109 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
John Northey - Tuesday, November 05 2013 @ 05:42 PM EST (#280386) #
Bit of a shame on Joel Carreno as he really seemed to have a breakthrough this year but when he never got a call-up it probably was a sign the Jays didn't believe in him.  12.2 K/9 was wow, 3.2 BB/9 was 'meh' and his 0.7 HR/9 was good.  But relievers are generally a dime a dozen so they might resign him for AAA duty or he might go off somewhere and get a ML job.  Smart relievers who want a ML job will look somewhere other than Toronto I'd think given the depth here.
Richard S.S. - Tuesday, November 05 2013 @ 07:16 PM EST (#280387) #
As an exercise, I tried to find spots for all the Pitchers at or near this level that need a spot. If A.A. acquires two Starters without trading any, we may not have enough space for all the Starters. The Relievers have a wee bit of space In AAA if no one is promoted.

Mike Nickeas, Andy LaRoche were signed to Minor League deals. Juan Perez has been outrighted off 40-man roster and re-signed to Minor League deal. All have invites to Spring Training. All have more value than those let go.
John Northey - Tuesday, November 05 2013 @ 09:53 PM EST (#280389) #
Yeah, I've done that a few times.  It does get a bit crazy.  Limiting to guys in the majors, AAA or strong AA prospects.
Rotation #1: Dickey, Buehrle, Morrow, Happ, Redmond
Rotation #2: Rogers, Jenkins, Romero, Nolin, Hutchison
Rotation #3: Drabek, McGuire, Stroman

Any of those 13 pitchers above could get starts this year at some point quite easily on merit.

Bullpen #1: Janssen, Delabar, Cecil, Santos, McGowan, Loup, Wagner
Bullpen #2: 2 Perez's, Lincoln, Jeffress, Stilson, Storey, Weber

That gives you 14 pitchers for the pen, many without options left.  Some of the rotation losers will be fighting for these slots too.

I'm sure I'm missing a few others there too.  However, the depth is significant although it is also of 2nd tier guys for the most part (IE: good for depth but not aces).  I suspect many guys signed will be targeted for AA rather than AAA with a promise that they can leave if they get a shot at the majors with someone else or have a time limit (ie: if not called up by July 1st will be released if desired).  AA can point at Perez and Wagner as examples of guys signed to minor league deals who got legitimate shots at the majors which should help sign some better AAAA talent.

Richard S.S. - Tuesday, November 05 2013 @ 10:39 PM EST (#280392) #
One slight problem (or more):
MLB Rotation (5): New Acqusition(s), R.A. Dickey, Mark Buehrle, Brandon Morrow, __________ (if only 1 new Acqusition).
MLB Bullpen (7): Casey Janssen, Steve Delabar, Sergio Santos, Brett Cecil, Dustin McGowan, Jeremy Jeffress, J.A. Happ and Esmil Rogers (that's 8 without options).
AAA Rotation (5): Ricky Romero, Kyle Drabek, Drew Hutchison, Todd Redmond, Sean Nolin, Chad Jenkins, Deck McGuire and Marcus Stroman (that's 8 on merit)
AAA Bullpen (7): Juan Perez, Luis Petez, Brad Lincoln, John Stilson, Mickey Storey, Thad Weber, Bobby Korecky and Scott Gracey (that's 8)

And I'm sure I'm missing someone.
siggian - Wednesday, November 06 2013 @ 09:55 AM EST (#280401) #
Neil Wagner?
Shaker - Wednesday, November 06 2013 @ 10:27 AM EST (#280403) #
Aaron Loup.

Still has options.

Paul D - Wednesday, November 06 2013 @ 10:55 AM EST (#280405) #
Does anyone know anything about the Korean pitcher Yoon, who's a free agent? The off season simulator at one of the Sports Nation blogs had him going to the Jays for 3 years, $30 million.

I know that the only thing I should care about is performance, but I can't shake the feeling that getting a Korean starter would be a great thing for this team.
John Northey - Wednesday, November 06 2013 @ 11:13 AM EST (#280406) #
Yeah Richard, I suspect we'll see a few guys let go this winter or traded from that list of 27 pitchers.  Plus Loup and Wagner and who knows who else.  So 29 plus at least one more for AAA/ML where there will be 26 slots available.  Of course, with injuries and how things have gone here odds are we'll see more than 3 go down.
Mike Green - Wednesday, November 06 2013 @ 11:28 AM EST (#280407) #
Here's a profile of Yoon, Paul D.  I don't like the sound of an undisclosed 2013 shoulder injury which affected performance.
Paul D - Wednesday, November 06 2013 @ 05:46 PM EST (#280413) #
Interesting, thanks Mike.

Agreed, his injury and results this year would probably have me avoiding him unless it's a very cheap deal.
finch - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 08:59 AM EST (#280418) #
MLBTR reports the Rangers are willing to listen on their middle infielders. Bullpen help plus a top pitching prospect (Sanchez/Stroman) and a lower prospect (DJ Davis/Mitch Nay) for Profar? Too much? Not enough?
SK in NJ - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 09:03 AM EST (#280419) #
The Rangers want to trade infielders to make room for Profar, so I doubt they will trade him (unless it is for a David Price type). A more likely scenario for the Jays would be getting Ian Kinsler, assuming they want to pay big money for a 2B.
Thomas - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 09:40 AM EST (#280420) #

If the Rangers were to trade Profar, I think they could land significantly more than that.

Mike Green - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 09:45 AM EST (#280421) #
If the Rangers want to sell Kinsler, the Jays ought to be interested.  There are questions about whether the Rangers are willing to assume part of his salary the next 3 years- $16 million, $16 million and $14 million.  Kinsler is still a good player, and if you can pay $12 million/year for the next few years, you'll probably have decent value.  His age 31 BBRef comps (retired) include Joe Gordon, Jeff Kent, Bobby Grich, Jose Vidro and Davey Johnson.  The first three were pretty great in their 30s while Vidro had already declined precipitously and Johnson was hobbled by injury and only managed one very good year in Japan afterwards.

Kinsler is younger than Infante, and I'd rather have him than Infante. 

85bluejay - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 10:25 AM EST (#280422) #
I would be aggressive and take risk including being open to moving Bautista & Reyes etc.  (I prefer a better defensive SS) - Here's an example an overhaul I like:

Rotation:  Morrow
                  Tajuan Walker - A longshot, but Seattle's GM is on thin ice & he needs to win now, may be willing to make a Kansas City like move - package built around Jose
                  open competition - Richmond/hutch/Stroman/Nolin etc.

LIne up:

           Franklin Gutierrez - buy low candidate & RH complement of  Chris Young/Pillar - excellent outfield defence
           Carlos Beltran - probably require 3 years to come to T.O - 3rd year likely fulltime DH
           Adam Lind - sits against LHP
          Brian McCann - 5 yrs/65mil
         Espinosa - once I've done due Diligence & he doesn't have a substance problem - I like this gamble - National's will move him
         Gregorius - Arizona likely going with Owings - better defense than Reyes & I think he has upside on offense   
I think the Mets would be interested in a Jose Reyes reunion as they have money to spend & this would be a major PR move in addition to making baseball sense

85bluejay - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 10:33 AM EST (#280423) #
Silly me, - it's a Jose Bautista package regarding Seattle (not Reyes) - getting prospects back from Mets 
Jdog - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 10:47 AM EST (#280424) #
Scott Richmond's dad has reappeared :)

Our pitching has seemed to fluctuate every year from good to bad regardless of who we bring in. I'm of the opinion that you bring in a starter that is 1 year deal/reclamation project to join the rotation competition(Johnson, Colon, J Santana, Halladay) etc. And focus your money/big chips on improving the line-up .

I have a lot of faith in Drew Hutchison getting back into form and being a good 3-4 starter.

Espinosa would be interesting in the fact he could handle SS as well as 2B.

I would love Kyle Blanks, yeah he wasn't great last season, but i see a buy low potential big bat. If they thought Headley could play 2B.

I won't be too stunned with anything as I really think everybody is potentially on the table this offseason.
John Northey - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 10:54 AM EST (#280425) #
For Profar I'd be telling the Rangers 'who do you want' and unless they went crazy (EE, Bautista, Lawrie for example) I'd do it.  Kinsler is far more likely to be available but his fielding is listed as average roughly at FanGraphs.  At just shy of $16 mil a year over the next 4 years I'd be very hesitant to take him unless the Rangers eat a chunk of that contract or provide underpriced talent (pre-arb guys) to go with him.
Jdog - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 10:57 AM EST (#280426) #
I'd gladly do Profar for Lawrie.
Mike Green - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 11:14 AM EST (#280427) #
The Rangers are taking the public position that they won't eat any of Kinsler's salary.  If that is the bottom-line, I wouldn't be interested.

Kinsler had above-average ratings for both range and DP last year and in preceding years, according to both UZR and DRS.  UZR for some reason dings him for the number of errors he made in 2013 (13 in 124 games for a .978 fielding percentage).  That doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me.  In any event, he hasn't been error-prone over his career, and I would not be worried at all about a slight increase in error rate.

What worries me is the loss of IsoP.  I think that the odds are against him being an MVP candidate again, and the $16 million figure is a somewhat high for what he is now.
85bluejay - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 11:36 AM EST (#280428) #
That should be Redmond no Richmond

I wonder if the Pirates will non-tender superstar-in-waiting Travis Snider -  Wonder if we could see him back in T.O?
Mike Green - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 11:37 AM EST (#280429) #
BBRef now has its age comparables updated for 2013.  Clayton Kershaw's age 25 list is pretty amazing.  It includes Seaver, Palmer, Pedro and Clemens.  The cool thing is that Kershaw has had a better start to his career than any of them.  In Los Angeles, they should make plaster casts of his left elbow and shoulder so that fans can buy them and pray for their continued good health...
Mike Green - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 11:48 AM EST (#280430) #
So I wondered whether Kershaw has had the best start through age 25 to a starting pitcher's career.  The answer is pretty clearly yes for the lively ball era.  Walter Johnson had his best years at ages 24 and 25, was probably a better pitcher through that point in his career and certainly was a better hitter.
pooks137 - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 11:54 AM EST (#280431) #
I wonder if the Pirates will non-tender superstar-in-waiting Travis Snider -  Wonder if we could see him back in T.O?

?Shi Davidi's lengthy debrief on Travis Snider's take on his time in Toronto seem to indicate ongoing hard feelings between Snider and existing management.  I would guess he would be looking for a fresh start anywhere else..

With Davis gone as well, we need our 4th outfielder to be competent in CF, unless Gose somehow makes the roster or a born-again Melky rediscovers his range.  Not that Davis was a great CF, but he seemed to fit the bill.  I think Snider did play CF briefly during his time here, but I don't think he's a passable option. 
pooks137 - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 12:03 PM EST (#280432) #
MLBTR predicts Travis Snider's arbitration award at 1.4$ million.  A fairly small amount, but he has been all kinds of awful for the last season-and-a-half in PIT.  Main problem remains that he is out of options, but that base salary may be enough to keep him from being plucked off waivers by the more budget-conscious teams.

Certainly a good non-tender candidate for PIT unfortunately.

Mike Green - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 12:03 PM EST (#280433) #
Pillar is competent in centerfield, and as an added bonus bats right-handed.  If you want to give Rasmus an occasional day off, he'd be a good choice. 
92-93 - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 12:16 PM EST (#280434) #
I'd rather the Jays give up little in terms of assets and take on Kinsler's large contract than selling off a bunch of pieces in the hope that Profar will be a stud in his pre-FA career and return tons of value in his arbitration years. There's always the chance they can send some salary Texas' way in a Kinsler deal, perhaps by giving them a Happ or Cabrera.
John Northey - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 12:23 PM EST (#280435) #
The Rangers saying they won't eat any of Kinsler's salary is secondary.  There are lots of ways to work around that.  Send them Romero and there goes $16 million.  Add in Cabrera and you save another $8 million.  Morrow could cover $9 million more if the Jays give up on him too.  Happ could cut $5.4 mil and Lind $8 mil.  Added together and you get $46.4 million roughly vs Kinsler's remaining $62 million thus costing the Jays $15.6 million while losing a few players who might or might not be helpful.  Like I said, there are ways although they could be ugly.  Another method is Kinsler plus a real prospect for a non-prospect - that way the Jays get talent for cash basically.

Kind of scary to see how much deadwood there is here isn't there?  Luckily Romero is the only one with guaranteed money past 2014 of that group.  Yeah, yeah, Morrow could be back to 2012 form and Cabrera might hit again while Happ is a decent #6 and Lind had a great 2013 but those are all risks and if you could shave that much off the immediate payroll (biggest savings in 2014) and add a decent 2B it might be worth it.  Not sure that the Rangers would want anything to do with it though.
pooks137 - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 12:49 PM EST (#280436) #
The Rangers saying they won't eat any of Kinsler's salary is secondary.  There are lots of ways to work around that.

I appreciate the creative accounting and thinking outside the box, but I don't think taking on any of those salaries makes much sense for the Rangers, unless they are really desperate to get rid of Kinsler, a la Vernon Wells or Alfonso Soriano.

Kinsler may be very expensive and in decline, but he is still very valuable at a premium, scarce position.

None of the salaries/players listed really have any tradable value right now, except for maybe Happ or Lind.  In fact, many of these players are actually worse than eating salary since they take up a roster spot unless released, decrease roster flexibility and have an opportunity cost. 

Romero is a sunk cost, so he's equivalent to eating money on Kinsler's contract.  Cabrera has no trade value until he proves he is healthy, and only has 1 yr/8$ million anyway which doesn't negate much future costs to the Jays.  Morrow is in a similar boat until he proves his health.

Lind may actually have the most value to the Rangers given their well-known turnstile at first base, and poor performance out of Mitch Moreland.  But Lind really only has value in this case if you have faith in his ability to play 1st base competently, which also may not be a given.  You also have to believe that Lind's true talent is closer to the 2 WAR DH he was this year and not the replacement-level hitter he's been for most of the rest of his careeer.   Again, this only takes 8$ million off Kinsler's cost this year, not future costs.

I personally think a lot of Jays fans are too hard on J.A. Happ, though he hasn't pitched well to date.  I think he's a perfectly serviceable 4th or 5th starter on this team depending on upgrades and has the potential to be at least league average.  $5 million also doesn't seem to buy much starting pitching these days.  I would hate to lose him, though I would be okay with losing him in the right deal for an asset like Kinsler, just not as a salary-dump.
pooks137 - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 12:54 PM EST (#280437) #
Not sure that the Rangers would want anything to do with it though.

Sorry John, after re-reading your post, you more or less summed up my thought process in much fewer words.
Ryan Day - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 02:22 PM EST (#280438) #
Kind of scary to see how much deadwood there is here isn't there?

I'm fairly convinced that if some of these guys played for other teams, they'd be considered "buy low" possibilities. Cabrera, I think, has a good chance of bouncing back, as he was sidelined by a fairly anomalous ailment. And there are almost certainly some teams who think they can fix Romero, though obviously none want to pay him his whole salary to do so.

The Jays may have a few players who are done - Izturis looked really bad this year - but likely others who just underachieved. Bonifacio was wretched in Toronto, but then went back to being a useful player in KC.
Mike Green - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 02:24 PM EST (#280439) #
There are some good ideas there for offsetting salary in a possible Kinsler trade.  What I don't think you want to do is to trade a prospect for Kinsler with no $ coming the other way.
pooks137 - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 02:41 PM EST (#280440) #
And there are almost certainly some teams who think they can fix Romero, though obviously none want to pay him his whole salary to do so.

An interesting concept.  I wonder, if Romero was hypothetically a free agent this offseason (not released or being paid anything by the Jays), what would he be worth on the open market?

A minor-league deal?  A major-league deal?  What's the highest base salary he could obtain in his present state on the open market? Could you get a 1+1 deal?

A problem is whether you try to "fix" him in the minors or in your major league rotation.  A team like Houston might be willing in the majors, but they also are unlikely to want to pay him above league minimum to do so.

I'm also not sure if at some point Romero can refuse outright assignments to the minors based on service time, etc which may force his release.

pooks137 - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 03:58 PM EST (#280442) #
An interesting read.  Wagner implies the A's minor league system used more advanced scouting and the Padres system less so.  He also mentioned a big difference between advanced scouting between the major and minors.

He mentions that he took it upon himself while in Buffalo to start taking his own notes and compiling a personal database, but mentions little about the Jays own minor-league MO re: advanced scouting.

I can see how at the higher levels (AAA, AA), it would be helpful to get players to think about how to tailor their in-game strategies vs certain hitters/pitchers, especially against more advanced competition. I can see it being less useful at lower minor league levels, where players are more focused on improving skills and working on aspects of their game, not necessarily trying to maximize success or winning.  It raises questions in my mind in terms of how much player development and minor league systems should balance introducing such in-game statistical analysis such as this vs. the more traditional teaching of fundamentals and skills development.

I also like how Wagner implies that this extra preparation has given him in-game confidence and has had early success, but may be too focused for some players.  It made me think of Lenny Dykstra from Billy Beane's memoirs in Moneyball, whom "kept it simple" and it seemed to bring him success.  Different approaches, different results.

Mike Green - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 04:37 PM EST (#280443) #
I agree that different approaches are appropriate for different young pitchers.  If you had a young Greg Maddux now, he would be all over the pitch fx stuff and would lap it up.  If you had a young Randy Johnson now, you would still be focusing on repeating deliveries, command of his pitches and so on...

pooks137 - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 05:02 PM EST (#280444) #
Necessity is certainly the mother of invention. 

Obviously, Wagner's success is much more limited than some other examples, but his new devotion to statistical analysis and advanced scouting seems to have played a part in an otherwise fungible 29 year old righty AAA likely close to being out of affiliated baseball earning a chance at regular MLB relief innings.

Seems somewhat analogous, though on a smaller scale, to Dickey learning to throw a knuckleball or Bautista experimenting with starting his swing earlier the September prior to many Jays fans calling for him to be non-tendered in the offseason.  Some epiphanies seem to come with age, experience and being close to the end.

Hopefully Wagner has continued success like his teammates.

Gerry - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 07:58 PM EST (#280445) #
Wagner learned the slider and that made the big difference for him. The Jays signed him quickly last off-season, whoever scouted him did a good job.
Richard S.S. - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 07:59 PM EST (#280446) #
The Jays have offers out to two Free Agents already. I don't who, but that's got my interest up.
greenfrog - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 08:17 PM EST (#280447) #
I just looked at Keith Law's top 50 free agents from last off-season. His #2, 3 and 4 FAs were BJ Upton, Josh Hamilton and Michael Bourn, with Edwin Jackson checking in at #8 (ahead of Anibal Sanchez). Free agents can work out nicely, but often turn out to be fairly large busts. Something to keep in mind as the hot stove heats up over the next couple of months...
SK in NJ - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 10:39 PM EST (#280448) #
Since AA made a serious offer to Annibal Sanchez last off-season, I'm going to guess he does the same for Matt Garza this year. It shouldn't take more than five years to land Garza, but I could see the Jays being outbid by other teams since the pitching market is so thin and signing Garza won't cost a draft pick.
finch - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 10:49 PM EST (#280449) #
I was going to suggest Garza as well for the aforementioned reasons. I would be happy with Garza and I would be more than happy if they move Bautista; it would need to be for a decent package of course. Profar, Odur and a pitcher would be a good haul.
John Northey - Thursday, November 07 2013 @ 11:54 PM EST (#280450) #
I'd be fine with the Jays signing Garza if they can - the cost being purely cash not draft picks or prospects makes him very attractive.  AA is known for being fast off the mark with trades, lets hope doing that with free agents results in a good situation.

For an interesting turn of events... the Mets apparently are willing to trade d'Arnaud for a bat.  Should the Jays be in on that?  It would be funny if he ended up back here next year and takes over for JPA as planned.

JB21 - Friday, November 08 2013 @ 05:39 AM EST (#280451) #
I'd like the Jays to go after AJ Burnett and Carlos Ruiz. I believe they could sign them both for 2-3 year deals keeping within their "window" before potentially rebuilding.
Richard S.S. - Friday, November 08 2013 @ 07:50 AM EST (#280453) #
A.A.'s acquisition of a Top Starter will give the Team a good 1-2 punch with Dickey. Ideally the Free Agent Starter should fit between the first two and Buehrle. Filling the 5-7 range (last two are in Bullpen) should be easy with what is available in-house.

The Free Agent acquisition should be a regular pitcher of 200+ innings. As good as Garza is, he has issues with doing just that. Pitchers get hurt, fact of life. I just don't want to start the season with someone who always hurt. That puts the Team behind everyone else before the season starts. That's too much of an advantage to give up so soon.
FisherCat - Friday, November 08 2013 @ 08:54 AM EST (#280454) #
I agree with the idea that the Jays should lean health first when going after the FA starters out there.  Unfortunately I think that leads all roads to an aquisition of Bronson Arroyo.  Which I wouldn't be terribly disappointed with due to his AL East track record.  I liken it to the Dempster signing by the BoSox last winter.  Dismissed by many but just another arm that deepens your rotation.
Chuck - Friday, November 08 2013 @ 10:32 AM EST (#280457) #
an aquisition of Bronson Arroyo

Not sure how great a fit a gopher baller like Arroyo is for Rogers Centre.

Mike Green - Friday, November 08 2013 @ 10:56 AM EST (#280458) #
It isn't so much the home runs that would worry me about Arroyo.  At this point in his career, the contact rate is significantly up.  He is going to walk fewer than 2/9 IP and strike out not much more than 5/9IP.  That means many more balls in play than most pitchers and hence more reliance on the defence behind him.  According to UZR and DRS, the Reds have had a very fine team defence the last 2 years and that particularly benefits a pitcher like Arroyo.  If you're going to go after pitchers like Arroyo, you ought also to work on the the team defence.
John Northey - Friday, November 08 2013 @ 12:20 PM EST (#280459) #
After the headaches seen by Dickey, Johnson and Buehrle I'd think the Jays might be a bit gun-shy about bringing a guy over from the NL.  Arroyo is entering his age 38 season, and while he has 9 straight years of 199+ IP one has to wonder how much longer than can go on. In 2011 he had a 78 ERA+ due to his 2.1 HR/9 rate, last year his HR/9 was at 1.4.  In Boston he was sub-30 and had a 0.9 HR/9 rate.  His BB/9 has gone down - 1.5 for the past 2 years combined - but so has his K rate (5.6 past 2 years).  I think he is worth far more to an NL team that plays on grass with a strong infield defense than he'd be to the Jays.  Just doesn't look like a match.
Gerry - Friday, November 08 2013 @ 12:26 PM EST (#280460) #
The market for starting pitchers appears to be crazy, Ervin Santana looking for $100M, Ricky Nolasco looking for $80M.  The Jays should look at signing Curtis Granderson or Shin Soo Choo and then trade Bautista or EE for a top flight starter.  That could be a cheaper and more effective approach.
Jdog - Friday, November 08 2013 @ 12:31 PM EST (#280461) #

We have mentioned Ian Kinsler as a possibility, the other well payed 2B who seems to be on the market is Brandon Phillips. Seeing the speculation this morning that the Reds have signed C Pena in order to make Hanigan made me wonder if perhaps the Jays were interested and we could be seeing a package of Phillips and Hanigan coming over. Hanigan is essentially the anti-JP with a potential to be a decent OBP guy with good D and little SLG.

Eephus - Friday, November 08 2013 @ 01:35 PM EST (#280462) #
I've been hearing a lot of people talk about wanting to bring Brandon Phillips here to play 2B. As someone who watched a lot of Cincinnati games last season, I like Brandon a lot but I fear his best seasons are behind him.

His glove is above average-ish but I'd say not quite at the gold-glove level he keeps winning that award for. (Subjectively of course, I'd say that Cano and Pedroia are far superior defenders, for example.) Phillips is a wizard at turning double plays, but his range isn't anything special anymore and he tends to occasionally boot the ball if he has to go far for it. His bat is also steadily declining and the only reason he drove in 100 runs this past season is because he spent most of the year batting behind a couple guys who drew 135 and 112 walks.

He'd be a definite upgrade on what we've already got at 2B, that's for sure. But as the returning centrepiece to a Bautista/Edwin trade would be interstate robbery on Cincinnati's part.

Hanigan would be a great addition though. He's a better hitter than what he showed last year and he's a lot of fun (in a good way) behind the plate.
Mike Green - Friday, November 08 2013 @ 01:53 PM EST (#280463) #
It's funny.  I mentioned Ryan Hanigan in the hypothetical trade.  I like him.  He had a BABIP of .216 last year despite hitting plenty of line drives, and that really dragged him down.  If he has a BABIP of .250, he is a useful contributor. 

I'd like to see Seitzer working with Hanigan and Thole.

JB21 - Friday, November 08 2013 @ 02:17 PM EST (#280464) #
Good article on this particular subject.
Thomas - Friday, November 08 2013 @ 02:38 PM EST (#280466) #

I came over to post about the Reds news and suggest that Hanigan would be a very nice buy-low candidate in my mind, but I see others have already beaten me to the punch.

If I was AA and I was looking for another lower-tier catcher who still may provide an upgrade, I'd look to Oakland and see if they'd let Vogt go cheaply, given that they have Norris and Jaso in the fold.

Gerry - Friday, November 08 2013 @ 03:58 PM EST (#280467) #

Good start by Aaron Sanchez today, he was perfect through 4.2 innings.  Then he hit a batter, made a pickoff error, made another error, walked a hitter, then recorded the final out.  Sanchez finished with 8 K's in 5 innings.

The consensus seems to be that Sanchez' mechanics are out of whack when he pitches from the stretch.

Between Stroman, Hutchison and Sanchez the Jays have three of the better pitchers in the AFL. 

Gerry - Friday, November 08 2013 @ 09:33 PM EST (#280468) #
Joel Carreno has signed with the Mets.
China fan - Saturday, November 09 2013 @ 04:18 AM EST (#280469) #
"....Between Stroman, Hutchison and Sanchez the Jays have three of the better pitchers in the AFL..."

In my optimistic moments, I wonder if this is the main reason why the Jays didn't make a qualifying offer to Josh Johnson. Their scouts and coaches, with reports from the AFL and from August, may have convinced Anthopoulos that Hutchison and Stroman are extremely close to being ready for the majors. Anthopoulos may believe that at least one of those two is likely to win a rotation spot in the spring. He knows that he still needs to acquire one good veteran on the free-agent or trade market, but he doesn't need to take a gamble on a risky player like Johnson if he is reasonably confident that at least one of Hutchison or Stroman will be busting down the doors to the rotation.
Richard S.S. - Saturday, November 09 2013 @ 01:58 PM EST (#280470) #
Too many people talk about injury-prone Brandon Morrow making the Rotation next year. When they were talking about Morrow rehabbing his injury rather than opting for surgery missed two points. Most of the time someone who rehabs most types of injury need surgery anyway. Why should Morrow be any different. This injury, when needing surgery, has a recovery time of 6-8 months.

Qualifying injury-prone Josh Johnson means he won't have to take a $6-8 Million contract offer next year but earn $14.1 Million instead. There is no guarantee he'll pitch 200+ innings.

At this point, Hutchison and Stroman will be severely inning-limited at a time when we need 200+ innings from as many Starters as possible. R.A. Dickey and Mark Buehrle are the only pitchers in the Organization I would trust to pitch 200+ innings.

This Team needs 2 additional Starters who can pitch 200+ innings. Preferably 1 Starter to pitch at the front of the rotation with Dickey and 1 Starter who can pitch mid-rotation with Buehrle. Actually every pitcher we acquire should be our Game One Starter.
SK in NJ - Saturday, November 09 2013 @ 03:49 PM EST (#280471) #
Stroman and Hutchison will both be on innings limits next season, so while they may end up contributing to the 2014 team, I doubt it will be out of Spring Training. More likely they will have their innings monitored early in the year, and barring a rash of injuries to the big league rotation (which happens a lot in Toronto), they will come up to the Majors mid-year or so.

Not only that, but this could conceivably be a job saving year for Alex. If the team has another 70-75 win season, I can't see AA's job being that secure, so he will probably go into the season with a veteran rotation and then let the chips fall where they may.

I'd imagine AA will acquire two starters this off-season, and then Happ replaces an injured Morrow in the beginning of the year, so it will be Dickey/Buehrle/Happ plus two starters from out of the organization in the rotation. Rogers will be the Villanueva of the group.
China fan - Saturday, November 09 2013 @ 04:06 PM EST (#280472) #
If Stroman and Hutchison are on innings limits next season, why not give them those innings in the majors, rather than in meaningless games in the minors? If they are deemed ready for the majors by April, let them pitch in the majors in April. They might not be able to pitch for the entire season, but that problem can be addressed at the trade deadline -- or from the depth that the team is likely to have by July or August -- if the team is still in contention at that point.
Richard S.S. - Saturday, November 09 2013 @ 04:36 PM EST (#280473) #
SK in NJ
I can agree with that. It makes more sense that some others.

China fan
You are not thinking things through. When they reach limits in late July, who takes their place. When injuries occur, who fills the void? A.A. needs to be in the Postseason this season. Aside from Dickey and Buehrle, I'd acquire three new Starters.
JB21 - Saturday, November 09 2013 @ 06:32 PM EST (#280474) #
Three? Ha. You slay me.

One good one should be sufficient as we have a TON of 4th and 5th options. Oh, and a catcher to catch them as well please.
krose - Saturday, November 09 2013 @ 07:24 PM EST (#280475) #
mmmmm! Worst case scenerio AA needs to aquire 3 starters; preferably top of the rotation guys. Best case; BJs have enough pitching to start the season.

I'm toward the best case end of the spectrum. Instead of all that pitching, let's see if we can use a gob of cash to get the best available catcher for the staff we already have.
SK in NJ - Saturday, November 09 2013 @ 09:45 PM EST (#280476) #
The Jays do need three starters, as only Dickey and Buehrle are 200 IP guys on the team. Now, expecting the Jays to actually get three starters is unreasonable (at least 3 good ones), so two is far more reasonable, and you can hope the 5th spot is taken care of between Morrow/Happ/Rogers.
Richard S.S. - Saturday, November 09 2013 @ 09:47 PM EST (#280477) #
I am willing to move Jose Bautista and a prospect or two if we can acquire a Top Stud Starter for the Front of the Rotation, but if not a Top Stud, then we need two very good Starters.

I am willing to go 6 years, $120.0 MM for Bryan McCann.

An upgrade at catcher means Ryan Goins could be our Starting 2B. We weren't getting any offense or any defense that position until he showed up. I'm willing to live with his offense. The rest of the infield is fine.

Melky Cabrera was made better. Kevin Seitzer was his hitting coach at the time of Melky's breakout. With Colby Rasmus' stroke adjustment , I'd be happy with one of the kids in RF.

So one Great Starter and one Great Catcher would be a great start for next season. Then A.A. could upgrade the bench.
Paul D - Saturday, November 09 2013 @ 10:09 PM EST (#280478) #
Richard, that's a very interesting point about Melky and Seitzer.  That makes me even more optimistic for next year. 
PeterG - Sunday, November 10 2013 @ 11:30 AM EST (#280479) #
I think too many of you are overlooking the possibility of Redmond as the fifth starter....I place him ahead of Happ and Rogers.....

I believe that plan A is to start Sierra in right and deal one of Bautista(preferably) or EE for a top of the rotation starting pitcher. In the event EE has to be dealt (hope not), Bautista would move to 1b and dh with Lind.

We will know more on Morrow next week. I have been told that if surgery, the expected recovery time is 3 months.......

finch - Sunday, November 10 2013 @ 12:21 PM EST (#280480) #
I totally agree in moving Bautista. I think there is an opportunity to move Bautista to Texas for Profar and Derek Holland. I would also dip into the FA market and sign Roy Halladay and Carlos Ruiz.

AND...I would also snoop around the White Sox and see if I can get Chris Sale.

If you move Bautista, you can go after at FA outfielder like Choo.

On another random note, I think Josh Johnson being a total disaster was a major blow. Yes, we gave up a lot of prospects in the Miami deal but IMO I think AA thought worst case scenario was that he would get a comp pick back.
Richard S.S. - Sunday, November 10 2013 @ 12:40 PM EST (#280481) #
For this to be a truly competitive Team, I think they need to carry their 6th Starter and possibly their 7th Starter in the Bullpen. The problem this team has is too many good relievers and not enough spaces for them.

Todd Redmond may be a better Pitcher than J.A. Happ and Esmil Rogers. He has option(s) left, while Happ and Rogers don't. Until this backlog is resolved, not all the best decisions will be made. Redmond wasn't forgot, just hoping the decision becomes easier next season.
Chuck - Sunday, November 10 2013 @ 12:45 PM EST (#280482) #
I think there is an opportunity to move Bautista to Texas for Profar and Derek Holland

I would think that were Texas to move two young, inexpensive guys like that, at such key positions, they'd want a much bigger haul than an aging, injury prone outfielder. Bautista certainly looks to have something left in the tank, but he ain't Babe Ruth any more.

PeterG - Sunday, November 10 2013 @ 02:02 PM EST (#280485) #
I don't think Redmond has any options remaining as he would have been optioned last year and not exposed to waivers......Happ does have an option left and may well start at Buffalo if he is not traded.
John Northey - Sunday, November 10 2013 @ 02:09 PM EST (#280486) #
For Profar and Holland I'd expect a kings ransom, not just Bautista.  I cannot see them trading Holland at all right now as he is part of a 3 young gun rotation - 3 guys 26/26/22 (Holland/Darvish/Perez) who had 114+ ERA+'s last year over 20+ starts each.  Ogando also had a 133 ERA+ but was old at 29 (well, old for this group).  No other starter for them had an ERA+ over 100 (Wolf dead on 100 but also a ton of games in relief).  No way do I see Texas trading a starting pitcher away unless they got far, far more than a slugger who is over 30 years old.

Now, for Profar you might be onto something.  Texas had trouble in the outfield last year and if they cannot trade Kinsler then Profar would be a logical piece to move.  If I was Texas I'd work on dumping Kinsler, but hopefully AA is in there chasing down Profar.  If they want Encarnacion I'd certainly consider it.  Profar is entering his age 21 season and looks to be a special talent with an 816 OPS in the minors and a 75 OPS+ in the majors in 341 PA so far.  His defense hasn't ranked the best (-8 UZR/150 so far in 293 innings) but I'd trust scouts more than stats with a kid his age.  20 year olds who can hold their own in the majors are rare and if you can get one you grab them.

greenfrog - Sunday, November 10 2013 @ 05:09 PM EST (#280487) #
A better move for Texas might be to trade Profar for a young front-of-the-rotation starter and sign someone like Choo (or find a lesser-but-still-good outfielder, the way TB did with DeJesus). That way Texas could have its cake and eat it too. Or they could try to find a talented young position player akin to Wil Myers. I doubt Profar gets moved unless someone offers the moon.
Richard S.S. - Sunday, November 10 2013 @ 05:09 PM EST (#280488) #
If Profar could be an all-star 2B, I could see acquiring him.

A.A. probably has enough MLB assets to get his Starter, but that might be his limit. Free Agency will have to suffice for all other acquisitions.

If A.A. cannot make a deal before the Winter Meeting, he might miss out on the players this team needs most. I'd be disappointed if he settles for lees than the best.
Mike Green - Sunday, November 10 2013 @ 05:57 PM EST (#280489) #
It is really best to avoid having below-replacement level players out there; that was a big problem last year.  Moises Sierra as an everyday right-fielder is a good bet to be exactly that, which is why trading Bautista would logically be the start to a rebuild.

And as for optimism about Melky Cabrera being reunited with Kevin Seitzer, it is great to be optimistic in gray November.  Odds are good for a positively euphoric March.  On the other hand, if Melky Cabrera arrives in camp in the best shape of his life, I will think of the great Huey and the even greater Jordan. 

John Northey - Sunday, November 10 2013 @ 08:48 PM EST (#280490) #
The advantage of below replacement level players is they should be easy to replace.  Sadly, for whatever reason, AA didn't figure out a solution to 2B or CA last year outside of letting Goins play at the end. 

Checking sOPS+ (OPS+ vs league at that position) we see at 2B that only DeRosa was over 66 and he was at 80 with poor defense.  Behind the plate JPA was at 71, while the other 2 were at 49/50.  LF saw a 229 out of Gose (just 29 PA so don't get excited) and a 118 out of Bonifacio (guess he relaxed out there) then Cabrera at 82.  Every other position was 100+ for sOPS+ (not counting pitchers). 

For 2014 we still have Gose & Sierra & Pillar for LF mixed in with a (hopefully) healthy Cabrera so I wouldn't worry too much there.  2B and CA though... ugh.  Goins can play defense but his offense was John McDonald lite.  JPA was the best offensive option behind the plate which is just sad. So clearly those 2 positions need at least a replacement level player and ideally well above.  For now though I'd send the new hitting coach to JPA's place for a visit so he can see if he feels there is any hope and do the same with him going to Izturis and Goins plus the 3 kid outfielders.  If he feels some of them can be made into decent hitters then that could help AA decide which is his #1 priority this winter.  Ideally all are fixed, but you want to make sure the worst one is dealt with.  2B is my gut feel (Goins and Izturis becoming backups with DeRosa) as the #1 priority closely followed by CA (JPA, if he could figure out the strike zone, could be useful - just get him to only swing at pitches he can actually make solid contact with and learn to foul off others as needed...far easier said than done of course).

Richard S.S. - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 05:44 AM EST (#280491) #
Melky Cabrera had reasonable numbers despite the tumour on his spine which robbed his effects on the numbers by 90%. I don't know the healing time / recovery time for his surgery, but indications are he should recover totally. That being the case, I think he should be ready to play by season start, and should do well.

As no one else had severe injuries, everyone should be ready for next season. Colby Rasmus has flatten out his swing somewhat from his sharp V that he's used before. So even if Bautista's traded, I 'm happy with what gets put out there.

Time for an early post on the outfielders, if no one goes into too much detail about the subject (like all poster wrongly feel them must). That should keep us occupied until the GM meeting next weekend.
Shaker - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 09:51 AM EST (#280492) #
GM meetings start today in Orlando.

Holland is worth more than Bautista.
Profar is worth more than Bautista.
There is NO trade open to AA that lands both Holland and Profar. It is literally not possible for the Jays to land 2 of the most valuable assets in baseball in one trade.

Colby has shown to be both injury prone and unable to hit LHP. Landing a CF that hits LHP is imperative. There are many options (by trade or FA) including Craig Gentry, Chris Young, Justin Ruggiano and Kevin Pillar.

Ryan Day - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 09:58 AM EST (#280493) #
It seems like people are evaluating Bautista's value as if it's still 2011. He's put up very good numbers for the past two years, but not great ones. He's also missed a lot of time with injuries, and he's 32, so might not get any better. He's making $14 million a year, which isn't unreasonable, but also isn't cheap.

He has value, but probably not superstar trade value right now.
John Northey - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 10:10 AM EST (#280494) #
FanGraphs dollar and WAR values are always a fun way to check how valuable a guy is.  Not 100% accurate of course, but it is objective vs all of us.
Bautista 2013: despite injuries valued at $21.2 million with 4.2 WAR.  His best year (2011) was valued at $34.8 million.
Holland 2013: last year valued at $23.9 million, easily his highest value (next is $15.5)

Both have team friendly contracts, with Holland signed (if you pick up his options) though 2018 at a max of $11.5 mil (2018).  Bautista is signed through 2016 at $14 mil per year.  Both should produce at a level higher than their salaries by $6+ mil a year (reasonable assumption) but each has risks.  Bautista with injuries, Holland with being a pitcher (notorious for injuries and generally more variable in results than hitters).

Those two are not a fit as a one-on-one trade just due to the fact the Rangers need pitching.  The only way Holland goes is if they get a solid pitcher back plus more unless Texas feels Holland is likely to drop in performance. 

Beyonder - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 10:40 AM EST (#280495) #
New York Post is reporting that AA believes that his strategy from last year in going after an elite front-end starter is sound, even if it didn't go as planned. They are reporting that AA plans to follow the same strategy this year.

I know it is just a few games in the AFL, but I can't help but think that Aaron Sanchez is very close to being that guy. This won't sell many tickets, but I think the team's best short and long range stategy is to slot Dickey and Buehrle in as your first two starters, make Morrow your presumptive third starter (if healthy), and have open competitions for the 4th and 5th slots among Hutchison, Stroman, Nolan, and Sanchez.

I just don't see anything AA is going to acquire in a trade as being measurably better than the performances we'd get from that group -- not unless he guts the team.
krose - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 11:18 AM EST (#280496) #
I agree Beyonder. I'd also add Redmond, Drabek and MacGowan to the list of
potential fourth and fifth starters. AA could be at the point in his tenure where he trades assets who, within a year, become better players than those for whom he traded.
krose - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 11:26 AM EST (#280497) #
Add Jenkins as well.
krose - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 11:30 AM EST (#280498) #
Is there a site that lists player options? Cannot find that info on B Ref.
Beyonder - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 11:31 AM EST (#280499) #
I like those names too krose (except Redmond), but the trouble is you can really only audition so many guys at once. If McGowan and Drabek are lights-out, then I guess we carve out a spot for them, but I think you can really only give meaningful auditions to 3-4 guys.

This is part of the opportunity cost of acquiring another "front-line" starter -- you don't get to audition some of the guys you otherwise might have.
Original Ryan - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 11:33 AM EST (#280500) #
And Ricky Romero should also be in the mix. While it would be a mistake to count on him at this point, if he can turn things around and regain his old form (a la Juan Guzman in 1996), he would be a huge asset to the rotation.
SK in NJ - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 11:43 AM EST (#280501) #

I like Stroman and Hutchison a lot, but I wouldn't count on them in 2014. Maybe mid-season, at best, and definitely 2015, but not out of ST in 2014. The Jays do not have the Cardinals track record of developing starters, and if anything, AA's tenure has shown that promoting pitchers straight from Double-A (Alvarez, Drabek, Hutchison, Carreno, Jenkins, Nolin, etc) or rushing them in general is not the best idea. Let Hutchison get some innings (he was lacking innings even before surgery) and let Stroman get some time in AAA.

If there was ever a time for Romero to revert back to his 2009-11 form, it's in 2014. Man would that would be such a huge development if it happened (unfortunately he is probably deadweight as a contract at this point).

Mike Green - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 11:50 AM EST (#280502) #
Don't forget Esmil Rogers.  He'd be perfectly acceptable as a 5th starter to begin the season, if one of the other options needs a month or three in the minors.  Scott Kazmir is a gamble I would consider, depending on the team's budget.

Someone pointed out that Hutchison, Nolin and Stroman are likely to be on (fairly low) seasonal innings limits.  If that is in fact the case, there is a lot of merit to starting Nolin and Stroman in the major league bullpen rather than starting in Buffalo.  For what it's worth, Nolin so far this year has thrown 127 innings (including 17 effective DWL innings recently) while Stroman has thrown 120.  If there is an innings limit, you would think that it might be around 150-160 innings. 

The other option I suppose is to tandem start Nolin and Stroman for six-eight weeks in Buffalo.

Beyonder - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 12:14 PM EST (#280503) #
"I like Stroman and Hutchison a lot, but I wouldn't count on them in 2014."

The beauty of having four guys audition is that you're not necessarily counting on any of them, but rather just hoping one of them steps up and giving them the opportunity to do so. As other posters have noted, there's no shortage of fill-in candidates in the unlikley event that one of those four guys can't seize one of the open slots.

BTW, AA's Henderson Alvarez promotion is looking just fine -- just not for Toronto. I still believe of all those players who went to Floriday, he will be the one we miss.
John Northey - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 01:50 PM EST (#280504) #
Difference this year is there isn't a Miami or Mets who are desperate to shed their pitchers due to cash (Miami) or some bizarre personality battle (Mets).

The Brewers are probably the team most likely to shed salary this winter.  Armis Ramirez is highest paid ($16m) but is at 3B and entering age 36 season - he could move to 1B/DH I suspect and shift back to 3B during Lawrie's annual DL visit but would be expensive in dollars.  Yovani Gallardo is a starter entering age 28 season who has talent but just a 94 ERA+ last year with $11m coming his way this year. Kyle Lohse is another $11m starter who was solid (117 ERA+) but is a low K guy (under 6 per 9).  Rickie Weeks plays 2B but has dropped badly in offensive production and really isn't close to being worth his $11m this year.  Ryan Braun is a LF who was caught red handed twice who I suspect they'd pay to get rid of now. Carlos Gomez is in CF and cheap at $7 mil for his production.  That's it for guys making anything serous down there.

Other ideas?
Hodgie - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 02:54 PM EST (#280505) #
When speaking of the need to acquire starters, why are 200+ IP constantly mentioned - like that is what is required to be a productive starter in MLB? Last year there were 36 such pitchers and only 64 that threw even 180+ IP. It is relatively rare to have 2 starters throw that many innings for a team in a season, bemoaning the fact we only have 2 seems odd.

I would also like to know why some think that Holland is available in trade? Depending on your metric of choice, Holland is somewhere in the top 20-30 starters in MLB and is just entering his age 27 season. It would be shocking if he was moved anywhere.

Chuck - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 03:12 PM EST (#280506) #
I would also like to know why some think that Holland is available in trade?

Wishcasting is a rite of the off-season. It would be interesting to read other team's fan sites to see which Blue Jays are being discussed as easily and cheaply acquirable.

Mike Green - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 03:19 PM EST (#280507) #
I agree, Hodgie.  The idea of having 3 starters going 200 IP+ and then 2 other starters going 150 IP+ is pretty unusual.  On the other hand, the Blue Jays only got 899 innings from their starters last year, according to fangraphs.  That's a poor total. 

What you would like to see from next year's club is 400 innings from Dickey and Buehrle, and 600 innings from 5 other starters- say 160, 150, 120, 90 and 80. 

92-93 - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 03:43 PM EST (#280508) #
"It would be interesting to read other team's fan sites to see which Blue Jays are being discussed as easily and cheaply acquirable."

I'm pretty sure you won't find another franchise's fanbase that is so keen on trading away their best player to help them compete in the immediate future.
ayjackson - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 03:54 PM EST (#280510) #
I'm on board with the crowd that doesn't want to do anything drastic to find a front line pitcher. I'm fine with letting the likes of Hutchison, Stroman, Nolin, Rogers, McGowan and Drabek toil away for 300-350 innings in the 4-5 hole of the rotation.

I'd prefer mgt focus attention on the offense/defence.

It's not a perfect scenario, but I think it is likely the best one this offseason.
John Northey - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 03:57 PM EST (#280511) #
I always say check where the depth is the least and fix that first.  2B/CA have no depth (guys you can live with for 2-4 weeks) or top talent so fix that first.  The 101 #4/5 starters in the system might work out, but JPA/Thole and Izturis/Goins/whatever won't.
finch - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 04:36 PM EST (#280514) #

"I would also like to know why some think that Holland is available in trade? "

Everyone is available for trade in the offseason. The question is, what's the cost of acquiring the asset?

krose - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 05:25 PM EST (#280516) #
John Northey - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 05:31 PM EST (#280517) #
Very true that anyone can be traded.  Babe Ruth was, Wayne Gretzky was and both while near their peak (Ruth set the HR record for the Red Sox before being traded and shattering all HR records).  If they could be, then anyone could.

What it takes generally is a team that is willing to pay whatever it takes to get said player or a team that is in financial trouble or both.  That is why I keep checking the teams that are probably on a tight budget (Milwaukee for example) to see who is likely to be willing to dump expensive but good players.  I thought Miami was a good match last winter before the big trade, but this year they have little in expensive players (to put it mildly). 

Another way to check is to see who has big attendance drops thus might be going into rebuild mode.  The biggest drops were...
500k+: Miami & Philadelpha: Miami has nothing expensive left, but Philly has tons. However, Philly also seems to think they are just a few pieces away despite their situation (Halladay might be done, only 2 of their 10 starters had 100+ ERA+'s, Howard is an expensive platoon player, a lot of their core is over 30).  If they get realistic then it might be possible to make a deal (wouldn't Cliff Lee look nice here).

250k+: Milwaukee, Minnesota, Texas, NYY: the last 2 are contenders, the first two are dumpers. 

100k+: Cubs, Red Sox, White Sox, Mets: All have more than enough money to keep anyone they want although the Mets have a crazy ownership situation that might force them to pare down payroll further.

No one else lost more than 50k fans last year.  So those 10 teams are seeing fan bases erode quickly, while Milwaukee and Minnesota are shedding salaries and Philly & the Mets might be wanting to.  All should be targets for AA.
Hodgie - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 06:12 PM EST (#280520) #
For the record, Ruth (sold) and Gretzky (traded) parted ways with their respective owners only when said owners were attempting to extricate themselves from desperate personal financial troubles. So unless someone knows something about the Rangers ownership group that I do not, I wouldn't confuse the hypothetical availability of Holland as probable.
finch - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 06:52 PM EST (#280522) #

From an August 2013 MLBTR posting:

"However, there were other proposed deals that had legs, particularly ones involving Josh Beckett.  According to multiple industry sources, the Rangers and Red Sox explored a number of possible deals including one that had a framework of Beckett and Jacoby Ellsbury going to Texas with the Red Sox getting left-hander Derek Holland.  However, Beckett told WEEI's Rob Bradford that the talks never gained enough traction for the team to discuss the possibility of him waiving his no-trade rights."

  • And one from a Dallas News interview:
  • "On hearing trade rumors of himself: ďIíve see them and hear about them all the time, but you canít really think about it. Itís a business, and if itís going to happen, itís going to happen. I can only control what I do on the field and off the field. If they trade me, they trade me.Ē
  • When AA acquired Josh Johson, he said something along the lines that they've had discussions in the past regarding him {Johnson} and past discussions led to the framework of the current deal. Derek Holland's name has been mentioned in rumors for the past 1.5 years. I'm sure they're not actively shopping him but at the same time, the foundation could have been layed in previous discussions.

    Hodgie - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 10:24 PM EST (#280531) #
    I wonder if those were the same industry sources that swore that the Jays had won the rights to Darvish? I mean, it all could have happened, however if the bar for deciding which players are about to be traded is MLBTR, then I expect everyone in baseball to be traded any day now. Call me a skeptic if you will. As a side note, I am shocked that WEEI would report discussions of a trade in which the home nine would end up with one of the better young pitchers in baseball by giving up an impending free agent that will be asking for huge dollars.
    Shaker - Monday, November 11 2013 @ 11:24 PM EST (#280533) #
    But finch, you actually wrote this:

    finch - Sunday, November 10 2013 @ 12:21 PM EST (#280480) #
    I think there is an opportunity to move Bautista to Texas for Profar and Derek Holland.

    You also wrote this (but I digress):
    AND...I would also snoop around the White Sox and see if I can get Chris Sale.
    Parker - Tuesday, November 12 2013 @ 08:49 AM EST (#280537) #
    For those of you who think Profar is a sure thing, you don't really need to look any further than Travis Snider for a reality check. He was a "can't miss" prospect once, too.
    John Northey - Tuesday, November 12 2013 @ 09:45 AM EST (#280540) #
    Parker - very true.  There are indicators that are better for Profar than Snider but no prospect is a sure thing and no vet is either as the Mets can attest to with Robbie Alomar (from a 150 OPS+ the year before being traded (121 career at that point) to a 90 once in NY, then an 80 then an 81 and done).  In sports there is always risk, the question is what are the odds of success.  That is where scouting become vital, mixed with projections based on stats to date.
    Mike Green - Wednesday, November 13 2013 @ 12:21 PM EST (#280609) #
    Kenny Wilson had a nice game in the AFL last night. You can check out the embedded catch, which is pretty impressive even if the route to the ball wasn't great.
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