|By Jason A. Churchill||By 11-29-2010|
|1. By: jgstecker on 11-29-2010 15:26:15|
My vote goes to Adam Miller. If he's healthy, he should be able to handle mop up duties as he acclimates to the bigs. Like you said, if he's not healthy he can be stashed on the DL.
Wilkin Ramirez signed a minor league deal with Atlanta officially today. So he IS eligible in the Rule 5. But anyone could have claimed him on waivers which is a much better option than drafting him in the Rule 5. Same story with Ni, Zavada, and Greene. Any interested team should have just claimed them when they were DFA'd last month.
|2. By: Lailoken on 11-29-2010 17:08:00|
For Rule 5, none of the position players are very appealing. Hard to see any of them winning a job.
There are plenty of interesting arms for the Rule 5 though. Miller, Brigham, Ottavino, Pelzer, & Kilby are all intriguing to me. Best to wait on bringing up the Varvaros & Paredes of the world when the team is out of contention & can trade League or Aardsma, whichever is not traded this offseason
Buck & Hermida would look alright in Mariner blue. They'd both face an uphill battle making the squad as a fourth outfielder since a right-handed bat would better complement Saunders & Ichiro. A fifth outfielder would need to have the ability to play CF. Buck, as a local kid, might be more amenable to signing a minor-league contract.
Sherrill or Howell would look great in the bullpen. The lack of lefties in the pen has hurt as southpaws have an advantage in Safeco. Sure, it's nice to have more righties to relieve left-handed starting pitchers but even a lefty specialist would have value. I know they're more valuable to teams in contention.
Hardy or Bartlett? Yes please. Martin, Navarro, or Zaun? Yes please.
Jose Lopez is traded before he is non-tendered then I imagine. How much can the M's reasonably get in exchange?
|3. By: Mackie on 11-29-2010 18:11:39|
Howell was pretty good with the Rays in 08 and 09. What was his injury this past season... a shoulder? Any word on his health? If he is healthy, it seems he could be a decent bullpen lefty.
|4. By: Jason A. Churchill on 11-29-2010 19:06:39|
Howell had shoulder surgery, yes. Iffy, but he can pitch.
|5. By: Lailoken on 11-29-2010 21:03:59|
Howell never had much velocity anyways.
|6. By: baseballfan on 11-29-2010 21:42:35|
I humbly beg to differ with regards to the value of rule V
picks - while roster construction makes it hard to keep
a position player, for a rebuilding team like Seattle, I
would be looking for relief pitching candidates - heck, for
150 grand I would draft 3 pitchers and if 1 makes the team and provides us with a few yrs. of cheap production or
allows the team to not rush it's own prospects then I
say, money well spent - especially if you look at some of the pitchers that had bullpen spots last yr.
|7. By: vertigoman on 11-29-2010 21:51:27|
A few years ago, the idea of obtaining Hardy, Church and R. Martin would have been in the mindless rosterbation realm.
Hardy would still be a good get just an under the radar move instead of a franchise pillar.
Not really sure what happened to Martin.
Ryan Church isn't even the most famous Ryan Church anymore.
|8. By: PositivePaul on 11-30-2010 00:11:53|
WHOAH! I need to get the "FREE AUSTIN!" campaign rolling again. Except this time, he's really available for free!
Letting him go was one of the first things Jack & Co. did wrong. I want him back!!!!
And, of course, the "Free George Sherrill!" campaign would kick into full swing if he indeed is non-tendered. Still, yeah, he'll be spendy -- too rich for the M's 'pen. I wonder if he'd take a little less to come back to a team and a park that's been comfortable for him. Too bad the M's don't have Kerfy in the fold like they did when GS52 first signed with them...
|9. By: shortstop9 on 11-30-2010 06:52:31|
We could match up real well in a trade with Tampa for Bartlett and Navarro.They are looking for bullpen help.Looks like the only move we will make is to bring back Branyan.You think last years offense was bad-wait till next year.
|10. By: Edman on 11-30-2010 09:14:08|
shortstop9, it's not even December yet, and you've decided we're only signing Branyan?
As bad as the offense was last year, it would take a major effort to be worse. Nearly every bat in the line-up was below their own league average. Why don't we wait until at least February 1st before we start the death march?
|11. By: cheese on 11-30-2010 09:47:36|
Could we just draft Clay Zavada's moustache?
|12. By: Lailoken on 11-30-2010 11:14:18|
I doubt the M's would want to trade for Navarro. He made 2.1 million in a down year. Better to wait for him to get non-tendered.
|13. By: maqman on 11-30-2010 11:29:38|
I like the Astros LHP Doug Arguello and the Reds
Danny Dorn, a AAA left-handed batter that pounds right handed pitchers. Dorn is blocked by Votto at 1B. 319 PA, .302/.398/.545 (.387 BABIP), .409 wOBA.
|14. By: StandinPat on 11-30-2010 11:50:05|
"You think last years offense was bad-wait till next year"
Because it'll be substantially better even without any significant upgrades? Because it was so historically bad that just replacing the 2010 components with in-house options such as Smoak at 1B, Ackley at 2B even Carp at DH will offer a substantial improvement?
|15. By: Rick Randall on 11-30-2010 11:57:17|
The offense next season should be appreciably better, simply because of the regression toward the mean.
Speaking of regression toward the mean....Jason Vargas and Doug Fister.
|16. By: slamcactus on 11-30-2010 12:03:34|
I'd really like to see the team grab Aneury Rodriguez. I've been a fan since all the way back when I saw him pitch against Everett back in 2006. I think at the very least he could be a quality bullpen arm, and there's still the potential for him to be a solid #4 starter.
|17. By: slamcactus on 11-30-2010 12:13:10|
"Speaking of regression toward the mean....Jason Vargas and Doug Fister."
Vargas posted a 3.95 FIP and 4.82 xFIP. I wouldn't be surprised to see his ERA climb into the low-4's, but I don't see him as a candidate to fall off some kind of cliff.
Ditto Fister. We actually saw him regress to the mean. His ERA went up a huge amount from July-Sept, but his FIP was in the exact same range, and for the season he posted a pretty great 3.65 number. It's also not like he got ridiculously lucky in any of the traditional indicators that call for regression: his BABIP was right about what you'd expect (.309), and his strand rate was actually really low (67.7%).
Both have virtually no upside beyond what they did last year, but both established that they're legitimate back of the rotation SPs. I don't expect either to fall off a cliff next year.
If I put odds on it, I think Vargas is more likely to have a worse 2011, but because of decline, not regression. His K's fell as the year dragged on, and I'm a little worried that his arm didn't survive '10.
|18. By: Rick Randall on 11-30-2010 12:23:27|
I don't expect them to fall off a cliff, either, slam. I agree with you that they both took steps forward last season, but their season numbers on a whole - and the way they were used as #2 and #3 starters all season - will not hold going forward.
3.95/4.82 for Vargas and 3.65/4.27 for Fister and the low/tumbling K rates for both guys point to a 4/5 tandem, not a 2/3.
Everyone knows that type of success is hard to sustain with such low K rates.
|19. By: slamcactus on 11-30-2010 12:39:16|
I don't think anyone thinks of Vargas and Fister as #2/3 starters moving forward, but I'd change what you wrote to reflect that both Fister and Vargas would be very, very good #4/#5 starting pitchers. #4/#5 is what Vargas/Fister would be on a team with a top flight starting rotation.
Fister's FIP put him comfortably among the top-50 SPs in baseball (he tied for #32 last season), and that stat takes strikeouts into account. I don't think he'll maintain that, becuase his 6.4 HR/FB% will almost certainly go up, but i do think he'll be an average starter going forward. Not too many teams have the luxury of a #5 starter who's capable of a 2-2.5 WAR season. Most teams don't get that kind of value out of their #4 starter, either. 73 pitchers produced 2-WAR or better last year. There are 30 teams in baseball. You do the math.
The tumbling strikeout rate for Vargas is a legitimate concern. But that's decline, not regression. Regression is what happens when you show the same underlying skills but get worse results. I think Vargas will likely be worse in 2011 than he was in 2010, but because his skills have slipped, not because he didn't have the skills to sustain that kind of success to begin with.
On a related note, I think the Ms should trade Vargas.
|20. By: jazon_24 on 11-30-2010 13:59:16|
On Doug Fister regression, it will be interesting to see whether his walk rate (BB/9) regresses:
2009: 1.40 (includes Minors)
|21. By: slamcactus on 11-30-2010 14:14:25|
Yeah, that's pretty much his recipe for success. Not walking anyone. Ever. As long as he keeps his confidence in his decidedly mediocre repertoire and avoids the temptation to nibble at the corners, I don't see why he'd lose his control for any reason other than arm troubles, though. Here's hoping.
I'm cautiously optimistic about Fister repeating next year, and mildly pessimistic about Vargas. In any case, the team could do a whole hell of a lot worse than these two as their #4/#5 going into the year.
|22. By: StandinPat on 11-30-2010 22:28:05|
"and the way they were used as #2 and #3 starters all season - will not hold going forward."
That's not really a regression issue as much as it's a rotation depth issue. Both Fister and Vargas had FIPs close to their ERAs and while their xFIPs were higher, they may not actually regress towards those numbers as Safeco suppresses HRs. I'd expect them both to perform similarly enough to last year, yeah prob not quite as good, but not enough worse to be damning either.
And why do people keep pointing out how Vargas and Fister could regress and never seem to mention the 28 horrendous starts from RRS and Snell we will be replacing? Their combined -2.3 WAR is significantly greater than the .5-1 WAR Fister and Vargas might, might lose in 2011.
|23. By: StandinPat on 11-30-2010 22:31:33|
Oh, and an additional 13 below replacement level starts from Luke French.
|24. By: Rick Randall on 12-01-2010 06:17:41|
Pat, your point on depth is exactly what I was getting at.
Question is, how do M's improve that depth so that Fister and Vargas can slide into the 3/4 or 4/5 spots?
Also, people need to not forget about the insane 3.9 WAR we got out of Cliff Lee's 13 starts.
Bottom line, it will be hard for the M's SP to duplicate their 2010 success in 2011.
|25. By: Rick Randall on 12-01-2010 06:19:57|
But, by the same token, their bullpen was the worst in the AL by WAR (which we must admit isn't the best stat for pitchers), and that likely won't duplicate.
Interested to see how it all plays out...hopefully with 1 more SP in the mix.
|26. By: slamcactus on 12-01-2010 14:27:35|
"And why do people keep pointing out how Vargas and Fister could regress and never seem to mention the 28 horrendous starts from RRS and Snell we will be replacing? Their combined -2.3 WAR is significantly greater than the .5-1 WAR Fister and Vargas might, might lose in 2011."
There's a pretty good reason for that, actually. His name is Cliff Lee.
The 2011 rotation will likely be worse than the 2010 version, even if Fister and Vargas maintain.
|27. By: StandinPat on 12-02-2010 10:33:38|
"There's a pretty good reason for that, actually. His name is Cliff Lee."
So because we have to replace 13 stellar starts from Cliff Lee, we should just ignore the 41 awful ones from others? I'm sorry, but I just don't buy that. If you want to talk about the possible regression of Vargas and Fister and the loss of Lee, you have to also consider the gains you get from taking out the trash.
"The 2011 rotation will likely be worse than the 2010 version, even if Fister and Vargas maintain."
Lee was worth an outstanding 3.9 WAR over his time with the Ms, while Snell/RRS/French combined for a -2.5. So you mean to tell me the M's are likely to find two starters, say Pineda and Francis that will combine to give them more than the 1.4 WAR difference? Even with some regression from Felix/Vargs/Fister, if both those pitchers were league average the rotation would show improvement.
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