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Friday, December 05, 2008

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(repeat) It might be worth a tank of gas to drive up to Williamsport and asking Moose to come out of retirement long enough to earn a ring in 2009.

How the hell does Aaron Heilman have any trade value? He'll be 30 next season, and he was absolutely horrid in '08- 5.21 era, 1.59 whip. He's been mediocre for his career too, so I don't understand the hype. It's like the NL version Kyle Farnsworth.

Jason Donald is a way better trade chip than Aaron Heilman.

Mets' fans should be more concerned with breaking up that nucleaus that is clearly made up of quitters and losers. Yeah Beltran, Wright, Reyes, Delgado, etc. have tons of talent, but they obviously don't have the make up or chemistry to win. All you will hear about next year is how they collapsed the last two years and it will get to them once again. Johan can't pitch everyday. He won't save them. Their manager is also an annoying loser. Like Jimmy Rollins says it takes a whole team.

Mets fans should be calling for something huge and drastic. Trade Wright or Reyes. They need a new team chemistry there.

Meanwhile the Phillies will be walking into spring training with the confidence of world F'N champions.

yeah I forgot to mention the Heilman trade talk. How does he have any trade value at all?

Aaron Heilman is like Adam Eaton with a bad attitude

Did the Phillies vote Heilman a WS share for blowing so many leads for the Mets?


Jason Donald is 7 feet tall...

Eaton had a good attitude?

Anyone else remember that interview that went something like this...

~Eaton is pulled in the 5th or 6th inning~

The reporter comes up to Eaton getting his arm wrapped and mentions

"Looks like you guys just scored a few runs to take the lead..."

"Figures, I'm out of the game" -Eaton basically throwing his entire team under the bus for not giving him and his 6+ ERA more run support.

It happened more than once so it wasn't a one time snap on his part...the bastard.

Len39: All I've ever said about Feliz is that he should not start vs. RHP. If you can show me that I'm wrong about that, I will happily admit I'm wrong. I await your evidence.

There are teams that believe Heilman's true value is as a starter. I'm not sure that means he has much value.

Heilman could probably start for us...


...in Reading.

Metsbloggers spend the entire season trashing Heilman-now they think they can trade him for something of value?

Maybe they can trade Castillo for someone like Longoria while they're at it?

There are teams that believe Ryan Madson's true value is a starter. I'm sure that means he has a lot of value.

Heilman and Castillo to Tampa for Longoria, Kashmir, and the anointed one David Price.

I want the Phillies to sign AJ Burnett because he refuses to play for the Mets.

NEPP: No... Metsblog is trading Delgado and his $12M contract to Tampa for Andy Sonnastine.

That's pretty reasonable...Tampa could use their GG 1B on the bench.

They should at least ask them to toss in Shields to make it fairer on their part.

247 comments on a report of talks between the Phillies and Lowe? Wow. They really are the Scott Tenorman to our Eric Cartman.

To add a little fuel to this Feliz/Dobbs chat that's continuing from the previous thread(s) -

According to Inside Edge, Feliz is a relatively good contact hitter (55% of fastball swings were put into play when the league average (LA) is 45%: A+, and 47% of offspeed swings in play with LA of 41%: A-). However, he had a terrible .186 BA on offspeed pitches (LA: .240, D+) although he was above average on the number of offspeed pitches he hit well (.088, LA:.078, B-) perhaps indicating that he was unlucky this past year.

Dobbs, with the caveat that he was shielded against lefty pitchers, was not a good fastball hitter, putting only 40% of fastballs into play (D+) and not hitting them especially hard when he did put them into play (.085, LA:.096, C+). However, despite putting a mediocre 38% of offspeed pitches into play, he had a well hit average of .089 (LA: .078, B-) and a superb .319 BA (LA: .240, A) on all offspeed pitches.

In "clutch" situations, Dobbs gave above average quality ABs in close/late games (B+), and was average with RISP (B-). While Feliz scored A- in close/late, and terrible (D+) with RISP.

With this analysis, perhaps we can segment the 3B platoon further than simply versus LHP/RHP. Often, Manuel has cited his instincts in putting certain players against certain types of pitchers (see: Victorino vs. R.Johnson, Sabathia). Maybe we could put attribute some quantitative analysis behind his instincts and see if they have any merit...

Maddux is announcing his retirement on Monday.

http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/story/8899378/Maddux-to-announce-retirement-Monday

Take a bow, Greg. You've had a hell of a career.

Do you like your chili Scott? Do you? I call it "Mr. and Mrs. Tenorman Chili".

Maddux officially retires today. Great pitcher but he was one guy who never struck me as a great intimidator in the playoffs even though his career numbers in the playoffs are very solid.

Andy

> For Alba/Jolie Platoon
> Believes Carrasco may be the #1 Prospect, but he will never be the Real Deal
> Would offer Moyer and Burrell a wrestling match to see which one gets the money
> I fought Keith Law and Keith Law won
> Howard April 2008 = Burrell September 2008
> 2 years after the fact, Beerleaguer is the Abreu trade.

I don't know, most posts on metsblog result in mets fans clamoring for all 171 free agents to be signed by Minaya.

Yehes, I'm afraid this isn't your chili, Scott. I switched it with Chef's. It's delicious, Chef. I hadn't planned on that. What I did plan on, however, was that my friends, Stan and Kyle, would betray me and warn you that the Chili Con Carnival was a trap.

Incidentally, even if Junior was just blowing smoke by making a BS offer to Lowe, he earns props by making all the Mets trolls' heads spin.

Go Rube!!!

That was South Park's highpoint as a show. I've never laughed as hard as I did during that episode.

Eric!, Are you teaching that horse to pleasure you?"

bob - Kind of confirms what is common knowledge. Feliz is terrible against offspeed pitches because he tries to pull everything in existence but always has been a good fastball hitter when he manages to catch up to them.

Interesting to see on Dobbs. I would think he was a better contact hitter. I would be curious to see a more through analysis.

NEPP: Perhaps. But I have to say those Bauhaus-like songs in the recent Vamps vs. Goths episode were awesome. Butters rules.

Minaya general plam as Mets' GM basically has been just to spend more money although he did make a few good signings by extending Wright/Reyes at early points in their careers.

The analysis of Burrell by on BallSticksStuff pretty much confirms what I thought - that any team that is going to sign Burrell to a multi-year deal either needs to move him to a DH or 1B (if he would be willing to pick up this position).

Well, well, well.

A "stats guy" who concludes that losing Burrell wouldn't be the end of the world. "...worst left-fielder this season...." Ouch!

And he doesn't even factor in how Cholly uses Burrell - meaning that he will be a drain on the bench since he'll be replaced in late innings.

And I have to wonder whether his slowness on the basepaths is fully accounted for in the offensive value side of the equation.

Not to mention that the value of walks when you've got Feliz/Ruiz behind you is difficult to discount statistically.

And his statistical tool even weighs Burrell's high amount of walks more heavily than OPS does.

Free Pat Burrell.

Maybe, or should I say hopefully, the Met's will outbid the Phils for Nick Punto. (http://www.startribune.com/sports/twins/35580459.html?page=2&c=y) That guy is a Stiffly Stifferson.

Yeah, Nick Punto doesn't get me excited. $2 mil extra is too much to pay for just a very marginal upgrade over Bruntlett.

yeah, it sure is a good thing that the 2009 Phillies won't be paying $15M+ to a position player with awful defense who strikes out a ton, is bad on the basepaths, and probably won't sniff a .250 batting average.

oh wait...

MG/Vonderful: In response to a couple comments from last night on Brett Myers. I don't particularly enjoy rooting for Brett Myers either, but I believe it's inaccurate to say he's "a guy who will never live up to his potential over the entire course of the season as a starter."
In his last two full seasons as a starter before the closer experiment (his age 24 and 25 seasons), his ERA+'s were 118 and 120. That's over two consecutive full seasons. To put that into context, AJ Burnett's best two seasons in his career were 122 and 119. Myers has shown he can realize that potential, he just needs to get back to that level. (and the 2nd half last year was a great start)

MG - I think the Inside Pitch analysis indicates that Feliz generally puts the bat on the ball better than most MLB hitters regardless of whether it's a fastball or offspeed. The problem is that he didn't do a lot of damage with the contact he makes; especially against off-speed (although his futility against off-speed appears to be more a result of bad luck as he had a league average percentage of well-hit off-speed pitches; they weren't dropping in for hits). Now this data needs to be broken down vs. LHP/RHP because there might be some correlation between the type of pitch and whether the pitcher was righty or lefty (along with other co-dependent variables).

I was a little surprised by this data as well because the assumption is that Dobbs should have had much better numbers given that the majority of pitches he saw were from RHPs while Feliz saw both. The question is, if we do a strict LHP/RHP platoon, would we see Feliz' average numbers improve (Dobbs is theoretically at its peak since he faced mostly RHPs).

"Metsblog readers suffer complete hot-stove meltdown"


JW, that headline alone is reason enough to salute Amaro for leaking that they had talked to Lowe.

Annoying and panicking the trolls is worth every rumor.

Yeah, Maddux had a nice career, but he's no Kyle Lohse.

EF, LOL!!!

Just read the BallSticks post.

Interesting stuff.

It raises a couple of question though, questions maybe phlipper can answer for us:

One, do the stats/study that Goyne quotes take into account outfield assists?

And two, has phlipper actually looked at the study Goyne is referring to?

The study has some very dubious ratings of some other LF, to the point that it makes one who actually watches the games question how valid these defensive statistics are.

I also took a look at the other studies on CF and RF stats. Some very questionable rankings there.

Interesting stuff though.

Brian G - You have a point about Myers' stats from 2005 and 2006. Basically if you look at Adjusted ERA or DIPS for both year Myers was around in Top 20 or 25 in the NL (basically a legit No. 2).

Still, Myers have never really point together a consistent season during the course of an entire year.

In 2005 - he pitched well in the 1st half but faded after the ASB including a less than stellar performance down the stretch during the Phils' playoff run.

In 2006 - arguably his best season to date but marred by the whole domestic violence issue which cost him a few starts and a ton of negative press/attention (and rightly so).

Myers and Burnett actually have very much in common including have a few decent seasons but generally haven't quite lived up to their talent or billing as a staff ace.

@MG: So basically you are saying Myers will be looking for a 5 year deal in the neighborhood of $60M?
I'll pass on that grass...

Clout: I'm not going to spend time going back through old threads, but you have seemed much more anti-Feliz since the moment he was signed than saying he just shouldn't start against righties, which I agree with unless someone like Moyer is on the mound.

I'm really glad I saw Maddux pitch vs. Hamels earlier this year then since it was the only time I saw Maddux pitch live.

If Myers can do what he did for the second half of last year for the entire year of 2009 I think he'll definitely be in the 4-5 year, $50-60 million range if not more. I'm not sure what other big name free agent starters there are as that could help/hurt him, but Myers is probably as good as gone after this year with Carrasco as his replacement. I don't think we'll see a repeat of the first half of last year from him.

Unlike Burnett, Myers at least is fairly durable. He has been pretty injury free other than last year with the whole closer fiasco.

Here's his last 5 seasons as a starter:

2008 - 30 GS
2006 - 32 GS
2005 - 34 GS
2004 - 31 GS
2003 - 32 GS

He'll probably end up making more money than Burnett when its all said and done as he is the much more reliable pitcher...especially if he has a career contract year in 2009 which is a distinct possibility. He'll be 29 next year so he's in his prime.

Brett will also be 2 years younger when he hits free agency than AJ is this year.

09 is his last year as a Phillie most likely.

Actually, AWH, I also had a question about the outfield assists - because it seems that given Burrell's high number, he wouldn't rank dead last among LFers defensively.

I thought this comment was kind of dubious also:

"If the Phillies choose to go with a classic right/left platoon situation, the two players will almost certainly combine to offer significantly greater defensive performance and it isn't hard to imagine that they will combine to match or come very close to Burrell's offensive performance."

I'm not going to bank on Burrell's replacements matching or coming VERY close to his offensive performance. But I would trade some drop off offensively for better defense, more speed on the bases, a LFer that will be kept in the game late innings, someone who would be more aggressive at the plate with Feliz/Ruiz behind him, and, most importantly, some left over money that could go for reinforcing the bullpen or acquiring a top of the rotation starter (although I doubt that will happen).

I may have come across a little harshly with Myers. I didn't really mean to say he was a bum. I think he is a good MLB pitcher. The hype was for much more and after his debut (2 hits, 1 run and 8 innings against the Cubbies) I really thought we had an ace. That was dumb of me for thinking someone was an ace after one game, but with the hype that proceeded him (I remember it as slightly less than Hamels) I guess I thought he would be more than good. That was what I was trying to say.

Just looking at the starting pitcher free agent market NEXT winter and if Brett Myers has a good year this year he should be in for an AJ Burnett type of contract. There isn't a lot of depth to the market. John Lackey will be the big prize. If Harden can stay healthy the entire season he should do well. Then there is Myers. Webb, Beckett and Lee all have options that should be picked up, obviously if not they all move in front of Myers. I can't imagine their options being declined as they are all very reasonable. Bedard is a free agent too but he obviously has something to prove.

Anyway, Myers is in for a huge payday this year so he is as good as gone. This is just another reason to lock up Derek Lowe as Lowe can be the #2 starter for a few years behind Hamels. Hopefully Carrasco is the real deal.

Derek Lowe

I read where he was asking $90m and 5 years, with emphasis on the 5 years. Suppose that was a take it or leave it position. Should the Phillies sign him?
My first reaction would be NO. Signing almost any pitcher to a 5-yr contract is very risky, and especially so for a 37-yr old one. What could you reasonably expect for $18m/yr when he's 40-41-42 yrs old?

Then I looked at it another way.
For the sake of argument, suppose having Derek Lowe could guarantee the Phillies a certain level of team success. What level would that have to be to justify a 5-yr, $90m contract? 1 WS title? 4 playoff appearances? What?

(You of course can ask the same question for any big ticket FA. What would be the measure of success for signing Manny to be considered worth the money?)

The opportunity window of the core Phillies players dovetails fairly nicely with Lowe's 5-yr demand. I'm curious as to what the Beerleaguer community thinks Lowe would have to bring to Philly to justify signing him for 5 years $90m. Playoff appearances? WS appearances?

In terms of individual results, how about we restrict ourselves to simple Wins, and nothing more. How many wins over 5 years? 60 wins? At least 2 15-win seasons?

I think 5 years for Lowe would make everyone here shudder....

I would shudder as well. It's a scary expensive gamble.

The question remains: What are your expectations from a 5-yr $90m pitcher? What would he have to do to make you say that it was worth it to sign him? Help you win a WS? Would helping win 2 WS justify the contract even if he went on the DL the last 3 years?

A GM contemplating signing a big money FA has to have some idea of what he expects to get, and how he expects it to impact his team's W-L record. What would that be for Derek Lowe?


Sign Lowe.
Sign Moyer.
Forget Burrell.
Trade Myers for QUALITY outfielder.

Why sign Lowe when you can extend Myers? Myers is almost 10 years younger, and Lowe's ERA+ since becoming a starter, with the exception of his first season as one, aren't all that much more impressive than what Myers has done in his limited time.

Lowe

03 (30) - 203.3 - 104
04 (31) - 182.7 - 90
05 (32) - 222.0 - 114
06 (33) - 218.0 - 124
07 (34) - 199.3 - 118
08 (35) - 211.0 - 131

Myers

05 (24) - 215.3 - 118
06 (25) - 198.0 - 120
----
08 (27) - 190.0 - 96 (obviously much lower in the end)

Yes, Lowe is a proven talent and we all know Myers' weaknesses, but wouldn't we all be disappointed if Myers fails to at least match Lowe's numbers by age? Also, consider that Lowe's best year was in his age 19 season (177 ERA+). Myers would be at his peak, I'd think.

What would it cost to do this? I'd rather give Myers 5/$90M than Lowe. I get the sense that many BL want to see Myers gone for personal reasons (I'm sympathetic with those.) And I don't mind the idea of a mid-season trade if the Phils could lock up another #2. But a 36 year old? For how much money? I'd rather just extend Myers with that coin.

that should say "age 29 season" of course.

NEPP: Absolutely right. Myers will get a bigger contract than Burnett. Hope you're right about the career year next season.

And "by age" i mean to imply a weaker argument that doesn't include Lowe's solid 2008. I don't know if Myers, like Lowe, could have such a solid age 35 year. But I do think over 5 years, from age 28-32, Myers could at least match Lowe's ERA+ average. What do you all expect from Lowe until he's 40? More 130 ERA+s? Maybe in 09? But in 2011 when he's 38? Maddux threw 212.7 IP with a 109 ERA+ in his age 38 season with the Cubs (and his ERA+ in his age 35 and 36 seasons with ATL were 146 and 159.) Better or worse than Maddux?

sophist: Agree with you on extending Myers, if the choice is 5 years either way.

George S brings up an interesting point. The championship window for this team probably has about 3 years left. If a guy like Lowe is the difference maker, isn't it worth it to sign him for 5 years knowing the last 2 years of that contract will be a horrendous waste of money?

Or is it better to go the Value Village/little splash route hoping to get lucky with a hot September/Mets collapse again and not be burdened with a terrible contract 3 years down the road?

Re: Defense. Goyne's point is a good one: Defensive stats are more inferential and way, way more subjective than offensive stats.

Here's just one of many, many examples of how defensive stats can mislead: Team A leaves their infield grass high. Team B cuts it close. Infielders on Team A will have a better chance to catch the ball than Team B. Yet the grass factor will be found nowhere in defensive stats.

Also, it is very important to consider context. If Burrell plays in a stadium with a tiny LF (i.e. CBP) and a fleet centerfielder (i.e. Victorino) then his slowness afoot isn't going to hurt you nearly as much as if he's playing in Royals stadium or Arizona, which have huge left fields. If there is any team in baseball that can afford a slow leftfielder, it is the Phillies.

Conversely, if there is any team on which it is stupider to play a good field/weak hit leftfielder (i.e. Jay Payton) it is the Phillies.

Yes: If Lowe gives the Phils 120-135 ERA+ for the first three years of the contract, allowing the Phils to stay competitive until 2011 or so, it would be worth it (a difference maker.)

Signing a big FA or two is preferable to the little splash approach for a team in the Phils' position (All-Star core talent.) This is what the Mets should do after all (sign the Kerry Woods and Bobby Abreus on the market.)

I guess the question would then be who's the better bet (for the money) over the next 3 years: Myers or Lowe? And then there's the additional consideration that Myers would likely be a more productive pitcher over the last 2 years of the hypothetical 5 year deal. Wouldn't Myers be cheaper as well?

"If Harden can stay healthy the entire season he should do well. "


Len39, if Harden does well in '09, I see the Cubs making a aggressive, in-season move to extend him before he hits the market, assuming he wants to stay in Chicago.

When Harden in "on" and healthy, he's damn near the best pitcher in baseball.

BTW, just to be perfectly clear, I am NOT saying that defensive stats are useless. They are useful, but they are not the definitive, word of God thing that many posters here say they are.

GeorgeS, si.com had an article about all the big dollar free agent signings, and whether or not it was "worth" it in terms of playoff appearances, etc.

It was telling in that it's a crapshoot as to whether the team actually makes the playoffs.

sophist: I like Myers' chances better than Lowe's but I'm not sure he'll be cheaper.

"Signing a big FA or two is preferable to the little splash approach for a team in the Phils' position (All-Star core talent.) This is what the Mets should do after all (sign the Kerry Woods and Bobby Abreus on the market.)"

Sophist, I generally agree with you, but I find your example funny. Didn't the Phillies use the "little splash" approach over the last 2 years to a division title and a world championship, while the mets have relied on the big free agent approach the last couple of years?

I can't imagine Lowe signing in Philly to a contract that would seriously hamper the team's ability to sign Hamels (among others) later on. 5/90 is too much.

"BTW, just to be perfectly clear, I am NOT saying that defensive stats are useless. They are useful, but they are not the definitive, word of God thing that many posters here say they are."

That is true, clout. As anyone reading BL knows, you're the only one with a direct line to God.

I saw over at MLBtraderumors that the Twins have showed interest in Donald. Feel free to rip my idea apart as I am only looking to see what other people think but what about trading Donald for Delmon Young. He is 23, is right handed, batted .290 and only made 1.4 million last year and would solve problems for both teams. I believe he still has 3 arb. years. Thats would allow the Phils to spend money on pitching and sign a long term contract with hamels. If they sign Lowe and get Delmon our team actually gets younger. If you think this is a crazy idea please let me know.

Ask Clout what he thinks about that rumor.

I guess Lowe came down a bit from his ridiculous "Zito-type" contract but 5 year at $18M is still pretty ridiculous. Demand for Lowe will be high but I bet he gets 4 yrs at around $17M/year (maybe a bit more).

Still a pretty high price and a big price to pay for a pitcher in his mid-30s. I can see why the Phils would be pretty reluctant to go more than 3 yrs.

I will be disappointed if Phils don't sign Lowe if he accepts a 3-yr deal somewhere else but I could also see the Yanks blowing people out of the water if they don't get Sabathia as they are supposedly going after 2 starters.

Colin - I am a non-smoker but if Myers duplicates his 2005/2006 numbers as a starter this year he will be able to warrant a 5 yr/$60M next year given his age and likely FA starters available.

I agree with Clout and Sophist - if the Phils had to offer a 5 yr deal to either Myers or Lowe I would rather see Myers get that deal.

Spitz - that is funny.

Myers misses at least a month every year from chronic shoulder tendonitis, while Lowe has never been hurt. Lowe has the best sinker in the game and Myers allows too many home runs. I wouldn't offer either of them 5 years, but would much rather take my chances with Lowe.

From the Twins Insider blog:
The Twins also like Phillies infield prospect Jason Donald, who went .407/.476/.640 in the Arizona Fall League this year. Who wouldn’t like him? But the Phillies might want to hold on to their stud prospect with Chase Utley and Pedro Feliz working their way back from injuries.

I'd still hold on to Donald for the start of the season. If he demonstrates an ability to hit major league pitching, his value will skyrocket.
Delmon Young seems like he could add .290 15-20hr to the lineup, but Donald could potentially do the same. Delmon Young has a terrible attitude, while Donald has a great attitude. Team chemistry is something fans don't appreciate until its gone, and last year's WFC squad had great chemistry.

baxter: Why don't you ask me?

I already heard your opinion

Foolish decision:

Furcal turning down a reported 4 yr/$40M deal from the A's. Arguably one of the better FA positional players available this season and probably the best SS but I bet he doesn't get a better deal as it is pretty clear that every team in the NL West (with maybe the exception of the Giants) is either reducing payroll/keeping it pretty much in-line with last year.

Going to be interesting to see where Furcal ends up but I don't think he does better than 4 yrs/$40M deal he got from the A's.

In a discussion regarding Myers or Lowe, why hasn't anyone mentioned Myers at the plate!? He really seemed to be turning the corner in the playoffs - plate discipline, tenacity, and the ability to shoot one into right field. I even remember a graceful first to third on a single in one of those playoffs games - don't discount Myers at the plate or on the basepath

Myers misses at least a month every year from chronic shoulder tendonitis, while Lowe has never been hurt. Lowe has the best sinker in the game and Myers allows too many home runs. I wouldn't offer either of them 5 years, but would much rather take my chances with Lowe

In 5 years as a starter (ages 22-25, 27) Myers has averaged 194.5 IP/yr. He's started 30 or more times in each. True, Lowe's IP/yr since becoming a starter is north of 200, but Myers is no eggshell skull. additionally, you have to consider age. Lowe's IP as a starter have all come since he turned 29. How many pitchers starter 100 games before turning 25?

Also, Lowe doesn't have the best sinker in the game. Webb does. And Myers only allows a few more HR a year than Cole Hamels.

And, of course, you have to consider age going forward. Will Lowe continue to throw as many IP?

You're right- Webb has the best sinker. Lowe's is 2nd best, as evidenced by their GB%.

Cole Hamels allows too many home runs.

I'd bring Moyer back and try out the youngsters. Happ and Carrasco both look ready.

baxter: Sounds like you want to hear it again or you wouldn't have told Pride to ask me, no?

baxter: "Happ and Carrasco both look ready."

I'm curious, what makes you think Carrasco is ready to step into a major league rotation?

I guess it depends on what else the Twins would want. If its just Delmon Young for Jason Donald, its pretty tough not to make that deal. The problem is, the Phillies have a lot of young outfielders in their system and very few infielders. Michael Taylor could be a long-term solution at LF, but what about 3rd base? Jason Donald seems like the only solid long-term solution on the horizon.

Today mlbtraderumors.com posted a blurb of how the twins are interested in Jason Donald.

http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2008/12/twins-no-longer.html

The article also links to a story on Delmon Young and how Ron Gardenhire doesn't think he should be a starter for them next year.

Seems like Andy is onto something and a Donald-Young trade could be in the cards. Keith Law also backed it up in a chat posted by Brian G:

Dan (Atlantic City, NJ): Speaking of Delmon Young, what prospects might the Phillies need to include with Jason Donald to land him?

Keith Law: (1:16 PM ET ) I wouldn't offer too much more than that. Donald's going to be at least an average everyday 2b, could be an average everyday ss, and while I believe Young will hit for more power if he gets away from Minnesota, I wouldn't pay full value on that expectation.

As another possibility, what do you guys think of instead trading Donald for Span. Span has a much better eye than Delmon Young as evidenced by his 50BB/60K last season playing for Minnesota. He also brings great contact .294 BA and .432 SLG but has the downside of bringing very little power. He only hit 6 HR last season and that is his highest total in any season he has played of pro baseball, including the minors. He seems to be more of a CF prospect than LF but I suppose if he plays good D at CF, we can move Vic to LF. The main problem with Span is that he doesn't address our need for a big bat to protect Howard in the lineup and Jason Donald is probably our best expendable trade chip.

Thoughts.

Seriously, if you have an opinion just state it. This kindergarden crap is stupid. My thoughts on Delmon are even if he had a bad attitude, who on his past 2 teams was there to keep him in line. Do you think Utley, Rollins, Howard along with other vets are going to let some kid come in with a cocky attitude and not put the kid in line. He is talented and still very young and he has some experience in the bigs.

I thought that Span was the reason they didn't have room for young. the other part that stands out to me is how all last year everyone talked about how we don't have any position players in our farm system. Donald was there the whole time, he was talked about but no one was campaigning about how he was the next Chase Utley. now all of a sudden he hits well in Arizona and he is the hottest prospect in baseball. I say sell on the hype, buy low on someone like young and have a good outfield.

If I wish to add pertinent information to my opinions, I will. Feel free to not read them Pride.

My concern with signing Lowe to more than three years at those kind of dollars is that we'll be paying for a very, very expensive middle reliever or set-up man by the middle of his contract. Hard-tossing sinker ballers like Lowe (think Danny Cox and Terry Mulholland)tend to retire to th pen in their mid-30s because they need to stay on top of the ball throughout the game to be effective.

gion, what'syour point?

AWH: Harden is a really scary proposition. There is a huge upside to him, but he's a huge health gamble. I guess this year will tell a lot about him.

On other things:

I definitely like the idea of a Donald for Young swap. It is worth looking into. It is time to sell high on Donald. I would trade a potentially average 2B or SS for a guy with the skills of Young. I could also see our vets keeping Young in line. For those who brought up Span, I don't think the Twins would trade him. In fact, he might be one of the reasons Young is expendable.

On a completely different topic, anyone think that Brad Lidge outsmarted the market. He inked a nice 3 year, $37.5 million contract during the season and now it seems like the market is cool on the abundance of free agent relievers. Right now it looks like K-Rod will get 3 years, $36 million and others like Fuentes and Wood will get less. I'm not saying this was a bad move by the Phillies. Lidge won us a world series. I just think Lidge and his agent deserve some credit for anticipating the market and beating it.

baxter: If the Twins are stupid enough to trade Delmon Young for Jason Donald, the Phils should jump all over that deal. I agree.

My understanding is that they're not committed to dealing Young unless they get a high quality return. They would like to move either Young or Cuddyer depending on which deal they'd do better in. Obviously Cuddyer isn't going to bring the same return, but he could get them something helpful and I don't think they're planning to get ripped off just for the sake of moving an outfielder.

Just because Keith Law says "Young for Donald is a fair deal!" doesn't mean it's a fair deal. There's a reason he no longer has a job within baseball.

If we were taking an SAT test and the question was:

Which one doesn't fit with the rest: Span, Gomez, Cuddyer or Young?

The obvious answer is Cuddyer. It's going to be very intersting to see how the other three -- ages 24, 23 and 23 -- develop over the next 3 or 4 years. I think Delmon will surpass the other two.

king myno: Your views on Keith Law and mine are similar but don't let Jack hear you.

Len39- Good point on Lidge. It's nice to see a deal that works well for both sides.

Cuddyer is a clubhouse leader for the Twins and Gardenhire's pet. He doesn't want to trade Cuddy for some reason.

That's why they want to move D. Young (who's much more marketable than a mediocre RF who's making around $10 million per through 2011. What would you really get for Cuddyer? He's expensive, brutal in RF, and underpowerd. He's Pat Burrell with less power and a bit more average.

NEPP: So you dump a cheap, promising player for below market value and keep an expensive mediocrity?

Yep, that makes lots of sense.

Still wouldn't be surprised if the Twins don't want at least a MLB-level ready pitcher or a good pitching prospect since they gave up Garza to get Young.

If it would just be Donald for Young, Phils should make that deal without hesitation. Gives them a solution in LF that that is under control for the next 3 years.

Even if Young turns out to be merely an average corner OF, he is still very valuable over the next few years since he is under a team's control at reasonable dollars. If Taylor or Brown pan out then they can utilized in 2010 to fill the spots that will open up if Werth or Jenkins aren't resigned.

MG: I have read that they are making an effort to sign Werth now, which is encouraging. I'd hate to see him go. An outfield of Young, Victorino and Werth should be good for a few years and then you have some flexibility with Taylor and Brown hopefully realizing their potential.

to clout:

LOL, I agree that it doesn't make sense personally but that's the signals the Twins keep putting out there. Gardy basically ripped D. Young a new one in the Minnesota press in the past week and said Cuddyer was his starter, not D. Young.

I would personally go with Young, Gomez, and Span but that's me. Let Cuddyer DH for you and you keep his bat in the lineup and avoid his atrocious fielding. I'm not the Twins organization though. I'm just passing on what I've read is all.

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