This is just a quick update to the trade tree I made for the big Marlins/Blue Jays trade. Miami has flipped SS Yunel Escobar to the Rays for infield prospect Derek Dietrich. I saw Dietrich play several times at Georgia Tech and he always looked solid to me.
The Winter meetings start tomorrow and the Pirates made several moves, big and small, prior to arriving in Nashville.
The small moves:
Traded a PTBNL to Boston for Zach Stewart.
Traded minor league RHP Luis Santos and minor league LHP Luis Rico to Kansas City for 1B Clint Robinson and RHP Vin Mazzaro.
Traded RHP Chris Resop to Oakland for minor league RHP Zach Thornton.
Traded IF/OF Yamaico Navarro to Baltimore for minor league RHP Jhondaniel Medina.
Signed free agent LHP Mike Zagurski to a minor league contract.
Looking back at my checklist of what to expect, they got the catcher and a bunch of relievers. Look for the team to acquire at least one starting pitcher and several more relievers as the off-season rolls on.
Filed under: baseball, Pirates | Tagged: baseball, Chris Resop, Clint Robinson, Garrett Jones, Jeff Karstens, Jhondaniel Medina, John Jaso, Mike Zagurski, Pirates, Russell Martin, Vin Mazzaro, Winter Meetings, Yamaico Navarro, Zach Stewart, Zach Thornton | Leave a comment »
What will happen this off-season:
In the OF: Nothing. Andrew McCutchen is rightfully entrenched in center. Starling Marte is ready for a fulltime job. Travis Snider gets first crack at right field. Alex Presley and Jose Tabata provide depth.
Behind the plate: A partner for Michael McKenry will be picked up. It won’t be Russell Martin if his price is really 4 yrs/$40M. I don’t know how much A.J. Pierzynski is looking for. Toronto (J.P. Arencibia/Travis d’Arnaud/John Buck) and Boston (Ryan Lavarnway/Jarrod Saltalamacchia/David Ross) both have catching depth to spare. Trading with one of those teams seems like the best option.
On the mound: A.J. Burnett/Wandy Rodriguez/James McDonald will head the rotation. After that things are in flux. Jeff Karstens will be in the mix if he’s tendered a contract. Look for the team to add one starter making $8-10M/year. Kyle McPherson and Jeff Locke will fill the back-end or provide depth.
In the Bullpen: This is where the most change will happen. Joel Hanrahan, Tony Watson and Jared Hughes will be there. Every other spot is up for grabs. This is OK because reliever performance can vary wildly from year to year. Bullpens are also one of the easiest pieces of the team to build on the cheap. For those same reasons, it’s also possible that Hanrahan could be traded if another team is willing to give up a solid catcher or starting pitcher.
So that’s it. The Pirates will sign or otherwise acquire a catcher, a starting pitcher and a slew of relievers.
What else was to be expected? The major moves were made in July – Wandy Rodriguez and Travis Snider.
There aren’t any obvious bargains to be had on the free agent market. Look closely at that list and you’ll find that each player falls into one of three categories: old, bad or prohibitively expensive. Any significant improvement will have to come via the trade route. If they could swing a trade for Giancarlo Stanton or Wil Myers or a shortstop with half a bat to go with this glove it would be beyond great, but I just can’t see a deal like that happening. This is your 2013 Pirates team. And it looks a whole lot like the 2012 team.
Filed under: baseball, Pirates | Tagged: A.J. Burnett, A.J. Pierzynski, Alex Presley, Andrew McCutchen, baseball, Clint Barmes, David Ross, Gaby Sanchez, Garrett Jones, Giancarlo Stanton, J.P. Arencibia, James McDonald, Jared Hughes, Jarrod Saltalamacchia, Jeff Karstens, Jeff Locke, Joel Hanrahan, John Buck, Jose Tabata, Kyle McPherson, Michael McKenry, Neil Walker, Pedro Alvarez, Pirates, Russell Martin, Ryan Lavarnway, Starling Marte, Tony Watson, Travis d'Arnaud, Travis Snider, Wandy Rodriguez, Wil Myers | 1 Comment »
Jeremy Guthrie just signed a three year, $25M deal with the Royals. MLBTradeRumors had predicted he would sign with the Pirates so that’s more than enough for me to consider this as semi-relevant. (Guthrie was also Pittsburgh’s third round draft pick in 2001 but did not sign.) Knowing the Pirates’ desire to improve the depth of the starting rotation, it’s likely they considered Guthrie as a possibility.
But that’s neither here nor there now that Jeremy has chosen to stay in Kansas City. How did the Royals get him?
He struggled hard in the thin air of Colorado — certainly not the first or last pitcher to do so. In KC, Guthrie turned back into exactly what was expected – a league average pitcher who can take his turn every time up. How did the Rockies get him?
Colorado traded the talented but inconsistent Jason Hammel, thinking they were getting the Guthrie that eventually showed up in Kansas City. Hammel had a breakout year for the upstart Orioles, becoming the pitcher the Rockies thought they were getting from the Rays at the start of the 2009 season. Man, it’s tough being a pitcher in Denver.
Just to complete the tale, how did the Orioles get him?
So that’s the story of Jeremy Guthrie: a consistently average pitcher twice traded by teams looking for a younger pitcher with a little more upside.
Filed under: baseball, Trade Tree | Tagged: Aneury Rodriguez, baseball, Jason Hammel, Jeremy Guthrie, Joe Saunders, Jonathan Sanchez, Jonnathan Aristil, Matt Lindstrom, Melky Cabrera, Orioles, Rockies, Royals, Ryan Verdugo, Trade Tree, Wes Musick | Leave a comment »
Pretty quiet on the Pirates news lately, so why not jump out into the rest of MLB. The big story yesterday was Miami enacting yet another firesale trade on its weary fan base. Go read that link; Grant’s awesome. I’ll still be here when you get back.
Good read, eh? Sucks to be a Marlins fan right now. Here’s how the trade shakes out down on South Beach (click to embiggen):
On the flipside, Toronto immediately improves by leaps and bounds. Still, it will be hard for them to compete in the AL East. At most only three teams from the division can make the playoffs and the fourth place Jays were 17 games behind the Rays. Even if you figure that they added 10 wins worth of new players (Jose Reyes, Josh Johnson, Mark Buehrle, John Buck and Emilio Bonifacio combined for ~10 WAR in 2012) and traded ~3.4 wins, that’s only a net of 6.6 wins improvement. A full season from Jose Bautista might be worth an additional 3 wins which would get them an 83-79 record. Just good enough to miss the playoffs again and break your Canadian heart.
Filed under: baseball, Trade Tree | Tagged: Adeiny Hechavarria, Alex Gonzalez, Anthony DeSclafani, Blue Jays, Brad Mills, Emilio Bonifacio, Henderson Alvarez, Jake Marisnick, Jake Smolinski, Jeff Mathis, Jo-Jo Reyes, John Buck, Jose Reyes, Josh Johnson, Josh Willingham, Justin Nicolino, Mark Buehrle, Marlins, P.J. Dean, Scott Olsen, Tim Collins, Trade Tree, Tyler Pastornicky, Yunel Escobar | 1 Comment »
Congratulations to the San Francisco Giants on winning their second title in three years. Did you know that half the teams in MLB have been to the playoffs in the last two years? A quick list I worked up:
Years Since Team 27 KC 20 PIT 19 TOR 11 SEA 9 MIA 7 HOU 6 SD, NYM 5 CLE 4 CHC, CWS 3 LAD, COL, LAA, BOS 2 MIN 1 MIL, ARI, TB, PHI 0 WAS, BAL, CIN, TEX, OAK, ATL, DET, NYY, STL, SF
Not only that, but 20 out of 30 teams have been in the LCS in the last ten years.
Congrats to the Detroit Tigers and San Francisco Giants for winning their leagues and for making my (revised) predictions come true. As such, I’ll stick with my World Series prediction from last round: Tigers over Giants.
Filed under: baseball, postseason | Tagged: baseball, Don Kelly, Giants, Javier Lopez, League Championship Series, Octavio Dotel, postseason, predictions, Ryan Vogelsong, Tigers, Xavier Nady | Leave a comment »