|By Chris Crawford||By 02-04-2013|
|1. By: DKulich44 on 02-04-2013 07:00:09|
That Forst interview is really good. Also, always a good thing when two of the more savvy front offices seem to use you to dump a player and get a trade done, huh?
|2. By: aksharky on 02-04-2013 08:39:13|
Here is my thoughts on this.
It isn't fair that the worst teams get punished the most in this system. At least the team with the 11th worst record get's punished way harder than the team with the best record.
I think that the teams should get to keep some large chunk of the salary they lose with their pick.
That way there is some balancing. The 11th worst team still loses that pick which hurts, but they would also get a lot more cash to work with for other picks than the team with the best record. Say they get to keep 25-50% of that slotted cash to use how they see fit in the draft.
The current system isn't fair imo and needs to be tweaked.
|3. By: Paul Martin on 02-04-2013 09:10:18|
What is the max deal you would give Bourn in terms of $$$ and years? He hit .274 in the weaker NL last year? How do you see his numbers projecting in the AL and specifically at Safeco Field? Being a speed guy, and on the wrong side of 30, aren't you worried about a probable decline, with his best years behind him?
Thanks, I love your work!
|4. By: Marlin Man on 02-04-2013 09:16:43|
First of, I want you to know that I enjoy your work Chris, with that said, I have to respectfully disagrre, I would NIOT give up our 1st round pick for Bourne, absoultely no way is Bourne worth (to this club anyway) a top 15 pick. Before anyone jumps my back for saying this, it is just my humble opinion.
|5. By: cpuglisi on 02-04-2013 09:26:39|
there is no way in hell i give up the 12th pick in the draft for a guy like bourn. Besides I want to the ms draft a guy with power. AKA Justin williams. This kid looks like a star
|6. By: sexymarinersfan on 02-04-2013 10:06:06|
Chris, at first I totally disagreed with your statement. I really did. But the more I sat here and thought about it, and having it "our" way, on "our" terms seems to make sense. Boras is good. He keeps pushing numbers out there like 5 years for $75 million. Where did that number come from? I didn't come up with it. Did you come up with it? Who came up with it? And yet EVERY baseball fan in the FUCKING unviverse KNOWS that's what Boras wants. You can thank Ken Rosenthal, Bob Nightengale, and PaulMorosi and Twitter, plus many many more MLBtraderumors sites for those number rumors later on. The point is, if Bourn signed a contract with the Mariners for something similar to that of Franklin Gutierrez, I'd probably do something like that. It certainly wouldn't cripple the ball club, and we'd even have cap space left over and then you've got a leadoff CF option for 4 years. The problem is, is that you have an agent who is very very good at negotiations. There's no way he'll let his client settle to "some" teams terms. So unless that happened, that'd be the only way for me too, to sign Michael Bourn.
|7. By: jbltzfk on 02-04-2013 10:25:52|
Same thing I said to Geoff Baker - FORGET BOURN. We have a better CF in Guti. Younger, cheaper, better glove (IMHO), more power. We can get a lead-off hitter, no need to spend 75 mil and a 12 draft pick (and, kick someone else off the roster!). Saunders is a good back up as well.
We are short one starting pitcher, though. . . .
|8. By: diderot on 02-04-2013 10:46:36|
I agree that I would jump if Boras took 3/$30.
However, one proviso: I would first retain enough payroll room next year for a Felix extension, and a multi-year for one of Morales/Morse.
|9. By: Docmilo on 02-04-2013 11:04:00|
Bourn? Um, no. Bourn scored 94 runs last season while hitting .274 in 703 PAs. In a poor 2012 in which Ackley hit .226 and OPSd .622 in 668 PA's, he scored 84 runs.
I could care less what a leadoff hitters on base percentage is. I could care less how many bases he steals. The most important job of a leadoff hitter is to cross home plate. If Ackley has a bounce back year after surgery for the heal spur, he will score 20 or 30 more runs than Bourn. Guti/Saunders in CF will give nearly as good as defense and produce more power on offense.
Guti/Ackley is much better than Bourn/Ackley. The M's screwed the pooch years ago when they brought in Figgins as a leadoff bat when they already had one in Ichiro. The team only needs on leadoff bat and that is Dustin Ackley.
There are better ways to spend that money and I would rather have a draft pick than to watch Bourn age in Safeco for the next 3 to 5 years.
|10. By: maqman on 02-04-2013 11:26:22|
First Chris I read your 2013 MLB Draft Insider Draftbook yesterday from start to finish, very well done and informative. One thing, the price of $1 is ridiculous, at least add a zero to it next year. I recommend it to all who post here as well as those that don't.
Sorry on Bourn buddy but I wouldn't sign him unless it was a steal of a deal. Where would they put him? They would have to sit Morse, Guti or Saunders, or sell one of them.
I get the A's and Nats denigration of Morse, I just don't agree with it. Morales is the guy I think too many people don't appreciate and I'm hoping the M's can hang onto him after this season. We'll see.
|11. By: Wishhiker on 02-04-2013 11:34:58|
It's difficult to be certain that Bourn is an offensive upgrade over any of our top 4 outfielders right now. His defense is in the neighborhood of Guti so it's questionable whether he upgrades CF defense more than the amount of games that Guti is not available. How many games will Guti miss? I do love the idea of adding his skillet to the leadoff spot, it would be much better for Ackley to be the 2nd leadoff option. I don't presently like any of the other guys as leadoff, so when Ackley sits out there's no easy answer. It's very hard to say how well he ages and transitions to not only the AL but also Safeco.
I've mostly been opposed to signing Bourn. Who is the odd man out if you sign Bourn? Who are your 4 outfielders and what do you do with the other? It's worth discussing in my opinion, though I'm opposed to the pick cost. Guti could potentially bring back a good prospect who's closer to the show than the #12 pick in a weaker class.
The money would still hurt some, but they've shown a willingness to sign prep players recently to offset that and with the present depth that may be a good way to add talent this year anyway. Younger players don't have to be protected as soon and we're coming up on that being a factor with having too much talent to protect it all.
|12. By: Mekias on 02-04-2013 11:36:34|
Valuing a leadoff hitter on Runs scored? Umm, I'm just going to assume your having a laugh and ignore it.
I really like Bourn and would do a deal with him if it was a good one for the Mariners. 3 years, $36 mill would be about my limit considering the draft pick we're giving up. But, as others have pointed out, Boras would never allow Bourn to sign for that so it's a moot point.
But I'm also one of the few guys who still think Gutierrez is a really good center fielder. Most of his injuries are of the freak variety and not indicative of chronic issues. The stomach problem is the only on-going issue and he seems to have that solved. He may need to be rested once a week but I think he'll be good to go this year and will end up with 500 or more plate appearances and a WAR in the 2.5-3.5 range.
|13. By: sexymarinersfan on 02-04-2013 12:36:03|
That's another point that I never got too. If we signed Michael Bourn then you might as well hand Justin Smoak his walking papers. There's not enough room on this roster unless you're planning on trading away one of your OF's in Gutierrez, Saunders, or Wells.
If Bourn signed a contract with Seattle he'd likely play the majority of the time in CF. Saunders would be in LF or RF, and then Gutierrez and Wells would platoon the other. That's also implying that Ibanez is strictly a pinch hitter off of the bench. Morse would have to be moved to DH full time which wouldn't be a bad thing and Morales would take over at 1B. Smoak could then be used as a pinch hitter and to give Morales a day off from time to time but basically would just be a waste. And I don't want to hear about anything hypothetical trades of Smoak until we've seen what he can do at the beginning of the season. He needs carry it over and have a respectable season.
I really don't see how Michael Bourn fits on this team with what Scott Boras will be asking for. It's a pipe dream and wishful thinking. I'm ready for Spring Training to start. If you need to make a move of any sort right now, then go find Kevin Millwood, whatever he's doing, and bring him back on another one-year deal.
|14. By: Jerry on 02-04-2013 12:42:25|
I think Bourn might have made some sense earlier in the offseason. I still don't like him that well. Maybe it's just Figgins bias, but his price, age, speed-dependent game, and loss of a draft pick make him a bit scary. However, we did need OF help.
But now with Morse, Ibanez, Bay, plus Guti, Saunders, and Wells already on the team, it just doesn't make much sense anymore.
I'd like to see the M's add some depth in the OF, since Saunders only has one decent year under his belt, Guti has major problems staying on the field, Wells is best utilized as a part timer, and Ibanez/Bay are not guys you want playing regularly at all. Plus, Morse is DH/1B depth in case Smoak busts, and Morales has had injury problems too. We have lots of question marks and potential ways things could play out. I think bringing in some buy-low candidates or guys who could be stashed in AAA for part of 2013 is the way forwards.
Two guys I though make a lot of sense for the M's are Domonic Brown and Avasail Garcia. Brown has been a bust with the Phillies, and they just blocked him by signing Delmon Young. I wonder what it would take to pick him up. Brown has defensive value, and would be a great in a platoon with Wells. Not sure if he has options left, but he's a great change of scenery candidate. Could be a guy who just takes a while longer to put it all together, sorta like Saunders but with more tools and upside.
Garcia would have been a great guy to go after as part of a bigger trade for Rick Porcello. Garcia needs a bit more time in AAA, but has ML experience and did well. He's probably a bit overhyped, but he'd be a great guy to have in the organization. He probably projects as a solid league average corner outfielder. We need that.
Bourn is better than both Brown and Garcia, but if we signed him, he'd have to start. That basically erases playing time from a position where we already have a glut of guys. In that scenario, we'd have to ditch a few of the players from the Guti/Wells/Ibanez group. If the M's were one player away from contending, it would make sense. But right now I think that it makes more sense to add flexibility than to overpay for a veteran.
I think the best way forward is to build depth and keep roster flexibility. Morse, Ibanez, and Morales are only signed for this season. Having Brown or Garcia (or similar types of players) would give us options. Neither would mean the end for Wells, who is a guy who has the potential to really help this team.
The M's could then go into next year and give Smoak, Guti, Morse, and Morales a chance to play. If Smoak craps out, Morse/Morales slide to 1b/DH, and Brown could take over RF (ideally in a platoon with Wells). If Guti or Morse gets injured, Saunders slides to CF and Brown/Wells take over in LF. All these options help lessen the possiblity of Ibanez in the OF for extended periods, but also doesn't mean we have to cut bait early on Wells. And if everyone is healthy and playing well, you just stash him in AAA. Plus, there is a very good chance that the M's fall out of contention early, in which case Morse, Morales, Guti, and Ibanez are all candidates to be traded. That obviously opens up playing time for younger players. Right now, we don't really have those guys.
Having some OF depth in the upper levels of the organization would be smart. Right now, the only guys we have who fit that description are Steffen Romero (who hopefully sticks at 2B, 3B, or super utility) and Carlos Peguero (who needs to make massive steps forward to be a legit option). I'd love to see Jack bring in some guys with some upside who have a chance to emerge as long-term pieces to the puzzle.
|15. By: Paul Martin on 02-04-2013 13:32:10|
Am I the only one worried about our starting pitching??? Everyday we get closer to spring without adding one, my panic level is going up!!!
|16. By: ripperlv on 02-04-2013 14:30:18|
Paul - I'm with you - I'm worried. I think the rotation at present sucks, and I don't care if we have all the top prospects in the world, the rotation sucks as of today.
IMO, I don't think Bourn brings enough improvement in the lineup to justify 5/75 or whatever. Of course, it would be nice to have a true lead-off man.
One of the problems, the prospects and the young players haven't built enough trade value yet to give JZ the leverage he needs to get that special player. They have good value, but could have much better value. Hopefully that changes after this year.
Someone mentioned M's winning 82-88 games. I just wonder, how many games to you see each pitcher winning to get to that number??
|17. By: Edman on 02-04-2013 14:40:12|
#15, I'm not at all worried. Do you watch over a pan of boiling water, fretting that it's not yet bubbling?
There is nothing to panic about, unless you enjoy playing "Chicken Little". There are pitchers that can help that aren't signed yet. There are trades that can be made right up to the start of the season, when teams realize they have some excesses.
I find the whole panic thing rather drull. It won't be the end of the world if Seattle doesn't find a fifth starter right now!!!
Would this mean an end to our playoff hopes?
|18. By: pwhit44 on 02-04-2013 15:07:26|
#9 is awesome.
"I could care less what a leadoff hitters on base percentage is. I could care less how many bases he steals."
"The most important job of a leadoff hitter is to cross home plate."
|19. By: WSChamps2014 on 02-04-2013 16:30:39|
There is sace for 650 PA at all positions including DH and 150 PAs for pinch hitting, these are approximates, depending on the success of the offense and the number of extra inning games that are played.
Shoppach C 175
Montero C 475 DH 25
Morales DH 450 1B 50
Smoak DH 50 1B 500
Ackley 1B 25 2B 575
Seager 2B 25 3B 575
Andino 2B 50 SS 100 3B 25
Ryan SS 550
Morse DH 125 1B 75 3B 50 LF 250 PH 50
Ibanez LF 50 PH 100
Saunders LF 350 RF 200
Gutierrez CF 100 RF 450
Bourn CF 550
These aren't meant to be exact numbers, but just an example and it would be very improbable if we went a season without injuries. So, in this type of timeshare, I could be okay with $40-$44m over 4 years, $33-$36M over 3 years, or $24-$26M over 2 years, like the Torii Hunter contract. It allows us to trade him after a year if he doesn't fit the 2014 version of the team or get the best two years before he starts to decline while setting him up for another big payday at 31-32 years old, while we get a draft pick compensation. I'm much more worried about going into the season with Gutierrez, Morse, Morales, and Smoak depended on for 600+ PAs, while giving 300 ABs to Shoppach, Ibanez, and Andino. I'd much rather cut their contributions as they all project to be arond league average. The organization has already started to turn it's back on Wells, so there's no point in saving space for Casper when Jack and Wedgie won't use him efficiently.
|20. By: WSChamps2014 on 02-04-2013 16:31:27|
sace = space
|21. By: Mackie on 02-04-2013 16:49:13|
@9, I think I understand what you are getting at, at least to a point, when I look at numbers from last year. I'd go by a bit more than simply 'runs scored' as a measure.
Bourn only had 35 more plate appearances than Ackley in 2012. He walked 11 more times than Ackley did, but he struck out 31 times more. Bourn stole a lot more bases, but his percentage of successful steals (.763) was not that far below Ackley's .788. As leadoff hitters, they really aren't that dissimilar. As Chris suggests, Bourn's game is built around speed. Is he speedier than Ackley? Possibly. Once Ackley gets his bat going, could he put up better numbers? I believe he could.
Bourn could represent an upgrade. For those who love WAR (and I don't necessarily, but I will post the number anyway), Bourn was a 6.0 guy in 2012. That's not half bad, and it is quite enticing... his average WAR for the past four seasons is 4.5 to 5.0. On the other hand, I believe Ackley can consistently be a 4.0-5.0 guy once he gets going, and I believe Guti can be in that same range if he stays healthy and plays regularly (we all saw what he did in 2009).
So looking at all of this, I don't see it as an issue of hiring Bourn (or not) to be a better leadoff hitter than Ackley. If they do hire Bourn, I would view it more as a desire on their part strengthen CF.
Guti's birthday is 2/21/83 while Bourn's is 12/27/82... so using Bourn's age as an argument against signing him and instead keeping Guti doesn't seem to hold much water. Bourn is right around eight weeks older than Guti. So, do you sign (and rely on) a center fielder who turned 30 about six weeks ago and hasn't had a history of injuries (and who has a good speed game that could serve him well for at least 2-3 more years barring injury)...
...or choose to keep (and rely on) a center fielder who hits with more power but otherwise has a similar skillset, who turns 30 in about two-to-three weeks and who can't seem to stay on the field for a whole season?
If the price is right on the free agent (no more than 3 years), I'd be very tempted to go with the free agent in this case. If Boras is stuck on something like 5 years and $15M, I think it might just be better to gamble on Gutierrez staying healthy.
|22. By: WSChamps2014 on 02-04-2013 20:19:20|
If we sign Bourn to do a timeshare like I outlined above, we couldget Detroit on the phone and do this trade...
SP Rick Porcello
CP Bruce Rondon
SP Drew Smyly
OF Avisail Garcia
CP Tom Wilhelmsen
OF Casper Wells
SP Blake Beavan
They fill their two biggest holes, an outfielder that hits right-handed, and a closer with experience under club control for a few years. They don't seem too preoccupied with who is their 5th starter, and while nobod here is going to be impressed with Beavan, he's consistent and can give you 200 IP, he's also easy to bounce to the bullpem come playoff time.
The reason the Mariners do it, they gain a real OF prospect besides Morban, and maybe Landry. They also get their closer/setup man of the future who should be up later this year. The two starters would allow us a young LHP to put somewhere in the back of the rotation and Porcello could either pretend he's a #2 starter until we can turn around and trade him, like I saw somewhere that the Rockies want a young groundball pitcher and a young hitter for Carlos Gonzalez. How about we flip Porcello, Saunders, and Carp for CarGo. I don't think Gonzalez is going to be amazing, but he does help solve our OBP problem and his hittracker says that all his homeruns would still be out in Safeco. If Smoak fails, we'd have an outfield of CarGo, Bourn, and Guti, with Morse at 1B. That would be a real offense. Just some ideas and neither of those deals would effect any of the prospects we'd need to trade for Stanton in a few months.
|23. By: d2ret on 02-04-2013 20:34:41|
lol. Wow thats some extreme forcasting and prospecting there!
|24. By: WSChamps2014 on 02-04-2013 22:43:43|
Maybe, but I bet Jack would do just that if the opportunity came available. It's also not unrealistic considering Detroit sees Porcello and Smyly as a coin toss. It would also mean Detroit would be trading $5.1M in salary for 3 guys who don't start making 7 figures for atleast another season and don't get expensive for a couple more at the soonest.
Smyly has what some have considered an injury history or at least enough time missed in the past to be considered an injury risk. Something like Brandon Maurer. They don't consider Porcello much better, but have stated that he's the front-runner going into the season, even though the rest of the rotation is righties.
This tells us they don't care too much about lefty/righty at the back of the rotation if they don't see Smyly adding value over Porcello. So this is why they most likely would take Beavan. It's also worth noting that Scherzer and Sanchez tend to be 5-6 IP starters, so the extra innings that Beavan can eat getting them to the postseason, will only be better for the Tigers.
Jason was the one that said we had the pieces to get Stanton. I don't think Wells, Wilhelmsen, Beavan, Saunders, and Carp were part of the package of players he thought we might send to the Marlins.
These are the types of moves we should be looking into right now. While we don't have all the information, it's clear that there are avenues still available Jack and his front office if they so choose. The cost may be prohibitive however. I realize this, but that doesn't mean IT IS prohibitive or impossible.
|25. By: d2ret on 02-04-2013 23:03:45|
I like the creativity, and lord knows im on board.
I am very curious what the real package was going to AZ in the vetoed Upton deal (Z said the rumored packages were innacurate). We'll probably never find that out.
|26. By: d2ret on 02-04-2013 23:12:13|
If and when Stanton becomes available, it looks like a very good bet the M's will be in on that conversation. Im potentially excited about that.
|27. By: Edman on 02-05-2013 00:03:00|
Seattle may be in the conversation for Stanton, along with every team with money, players and prospects to spend. A lot of teams are going to want a hand in that poker game. Enough that I can't get excited.
|28. By: Edman on 02-05-2013 00:25:08|
#22 and #24, IMO, Detroit hangs the phone up before Jack could finish his sentence. Why wouldn't Detroit want Rondon as their closer of the future, with a longer amount of control? Everything being said at the moment says their more than willing to go with Rondon, and have been very reluctant to trade him.
Detroit doesn't have a need for salary relief. They have not acted that way in the last five years, so why would they be doing it now? Spending does not appear to be a problem for them. So, why do they need to move 5.1 million?
Why, if Beavan is capable of 200 innings, would Seattle trade him, when they are looking for someone to take a heavy workload themselves?
Detroit would give up a "real" outfield prospect, to get back Wells? I don't see it.
You're trying to play chess, thinking moves ahead, in a game that is never stable enough to think that deeply into the future. Why not? Because, all things do not stay as they are.
Most of your trade ideas seem to heavily favor Seattle. Other than Wilhelmsen, who in the package you propose couldn't Detroit acquire a similar player in separate deals and costing them less in regard to trade value?
|29. By: WSChamps2014 on 02-05-2013 12:02:33|
Why the Tigers would trade Rondon...
* his secondary pitches need more polish
* he threw less than 10 innings above AA in his career
* and when there in AAA he walked 7+/9IP last year
* many evaluators believe he'd benefit from a full year in AAA.
* if they don't make the trade, Rondon is the closer from Opening Day for the Tigers which means it's 6 years of control versus 5 with Wilhelmsen, who IS polished (atleast 2 years ahead of Rondon in my estimations), in his prime, and has a fastball almost as good as Rondon's with a true plus secondary pitch and a third offering which is an average offering in the majors.
* the control/command is a huge difference between the two pitchers as well.
By this time next year, due to the amount of development required by Rondon to reach his potential, it would be difficult for him to be worth from 2014-2018 what Wilhelmsen will be worth from 2013-2017. And 0.5-1.0 WAR in 2013 for Rondon, is not worth passing on this deal, especially when you consider failure with hard throwers that don't have good control (Henry Rodriguez, Dan Cortes, etc.). It's essentially trading 6 years of projection for 5 years of peak development. Which is why we can ask for much more. Don't forget that the window of opportunity for Detroit is now, not in three years when Rondon (if he developes completely) will be worth what Wilhelmsen is now.
They are reluctant to trade him because nobody is offering a frontline closer with 5 years of control and two of those for the minimum. How many teams can offer a guy like Wilhelmsen? Only, Seattle. But as many have said, now is not our time to win, it's in 2014 and beyond. However Rondon could be up by August or September and still have 6 more years of value to a team like Seattle who can put him in the middle innings while Capps and Pryor close games.
Detroit spends the money it takes to improve the team, but if you are telling me that they don't care about the money, why is Soriano a setup guy in Washington instead of closing in Detroit? When the Tigers clearly need a closer and while the talk about Rondon as being that guy, it's because they can't find the guy they want, so they market the guy they have. Teams do it all the time.
Seattle doesn't need an innings eater like Beavan, they have 4-6 (Hultzen, Paxton, Maurer, Fernandez, Carraway, Walker) okay to elite pitching prospects knocking on the door, they just need to get to June with what they start with and then they can promote someone.
"real outfield prospect" = someone who belongs in the OF
Ackley, Seager, Romero, and Miller could play the OF, but they are better in the infield. Garcia has his warts, like a 3.5% walk rate, so yeah he's valueable if you are willing to wait on him a couple more years, but if you want to win a championship, you take the 1.5-2.0 WAR Casper gives you now, instead of again what Garcia may or may not be worth in two or three years.
Tell that to Billy Beane, read the Forst interview and see how he manipulated the trade that brought Jaso to Oakland and they were also involved in the Upton deal. They manipulate a lot of the trades by playing chess. I don't think Jack is any less capable of playing chess than Beane.
Actually that Detroit trade is pretty light for Seattle, but it fills holes. Garcia would probably be our #14-17 best prospect in Seattle. Smyly would be around #7-9 for us and Porcello is going to be expensive for his last three years of control, something like $26MM for a guy who would be worth $33-35M in free agency or those same 3 years. That makes him worth about $10M in returning value. Rondon would be around our #12-15 prospect as he's no better than Capps or Pryor with a greater bust potential and he's only a reliever.
This is clearly a case of you wanting to fight with me rather that looking at it objectively.
Wells = Smyly
Beavan = Garcia
Wilhelmsen = Porcello($10M in trade value) + Rondon
How much did we give up to get Cortes? Betancourt? A crappy negative value player... And it was considered a solid trade. Rondon = Cortes, while Rondon has a touch more control/command, but not enough to over-value him.
Wells is not worth nothing and shouldn't be viewed as a throw away. Detroit also loved Casper and because they didn't need him two years ago, doesn't mean they couldn't use him now. Plus he provides the rare ability of being a power bat off the bench and a plus fielder at all three outfield positions. But you have to give something to get something.
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