Baseball Toaster was unplugged on February 4, 2009.
Barry Zito signed with the Giants for many years and much money. No No New York.
Myself, I still think the Yankees should do it. If the Diamondbacks are willing to trade some prospects and a big-leaguer for 43-year old Randy Johnson than speaking as a Dodger fan, I say God bless the Diamondbacks in their efforts.
If that's what it took to get him, good riddance. This is a pretty good outcome, actually--he goes to the NL, and his signing MAY pressure the Dodgers, Padres, and DBacks to take a longer look at RJ.
OK, that last part was really wishful thinking.
Go get a backup catcher, some more bullpen help, and try to make it until the trading deadline with Wang, Moose and Andy.
"The New York Yankees are seeking a package of three young pitchers from the Diamondbacks for Randy Johnson, including at least one reliever, according to a source with knowledge of the negotiations.
The Yankees have expressed interest in right-handed setup man Brandon Medders, the source said, in addition to several of the five starting pitchers the D-Backs consider candidates for the two available spots in their 2007 rotation Edgar Gonzalez, Enrique Gonzalez, Dustin Nippert, Ross Ohlendorf and Micah Owings."
Good prospects, but position players would be fun.
Too bad the D-backs got rid of Navarro already. I'd like to call that one back.
This can only fuel more Unit talks.
And to boot: "There's a club option for an eighth season that will vest automatically if Zito pitches 200 innings in the final year of the deal, or 400 in the final two years or 600 in the final three years. After that option vests, it becomes a player option and Zito can accept or decline it." ( SF Chron)
Without RJ, the staff is still in decent shape. In fact, I'd prefer it. This way all the media can focus on what an awful season Arod is having as he racks up typical Arod numbers instead of focusing on RJ's knees and back imploding.
Dioner Favian (Vivas) Navarro
Bob Sheppard would have a field day with that one. Don't know why the "Vivas" is parenthetical (nickname?) but that's how Baseball Reference lists him.
So, yeah, if Pavano can put in a full year of league average or even slightly worse pitching, you have already replaced RJ.
Gee, there've been a bunch of big contracts this year, but none by the Yankees. How are they going to compete with all these other teams spending like drunken sailors.
7 Take a look at the shiny Miguel Montero in the window and pray with me:
Heck, even if the D'backs think Montero is ready, at least get Chris Snyder (http://tinyurl.com/u4rmh) in a package with one or two A/AA pitchers.
Either way, if either team even remotely wants to get this done, there's no reason it shouldn't happen, and no reason a catcher shouldn't be returned as a part of it!
Jeter plays every day, Zito every fifth. Pretty crazy how the economics of MLB have changed in just a few years.
Off topic, but I got a chuckle out of this today in the Ledger:
Angels: Outfielder Juan Rivera had surgery to repair the left leg he broke playing winter ball in Venezuela last week. Orthopedic surgeon Michael Abrahams operated on Rivera in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., inserting a rod into Rivera's left tibia and screws at the top and bottom of the fracture.
They inserted A-Rod? I hope that surgeon knows what he's doing. It's only going to break on Rivera in a key situation...
They made him an offer he couldn't refuse...one so high Boras knew no other team would match it.
That is brilliantly stupid. Does SF have the kind of team that is missing that one last piece to win it all? How do you blow $18 million a season over 7 years on a guy that doesn't throw very hard? Oh yeah, that's the team that traded Joe Nathan and Francisco Liriano for beans.....
But the industry is obviously flush with cash or they wouldnt be paying these rates. This isnt just one guy. Its every team. it's the way things are now. If Zambrano hits the market he'll make 20 a yr. Cabrera too. Even the freaking Royals gave Meche a huge deal and 5 years.
The soft cap is $148 million, before you get smacked with a penalty tax. The Bombers paid $26 million last year for being over the 2006 "cap". That makes a non-ace cost prohibitive at $18 million a season when you have 24 other guys on your active roster to pay. If you have one of the top farm systems in the world as a source of cheap top caliber talent, maybe overpaying for Zito makes sense. If you're close and can put yourself over the top.
The Giants have many, many, many holes in their team and a poor farm system. They were ranked #18 out of 30 by BA in 2006, and that was including Matt Cain in the mix. Now he's with the big league team.
The team was 24th in all of baseball in runs scored last season, and they start the following players as of today:
C Bengie Molina (32)
1B Rich Aurilia (35)
2B Ray Durham (35)
SS Omar Vizquel (39)
3B Pedro Feliz (31)
LF Barry Bonds (42)
CF Dave Roberts (34)
RF Randy Winn (32)
Look at how old that team is! Look at the ages in parentheses next to their names! There isn't a guy under 31 on the whole roster. They have no one on the farm, and they stink. That team doesn't need to sign the "best available pitcher" in this economic climate. Are they going to compete in a division where San Diego, Arizona, and the Dodgers all have better 2007 teams AND far superior farm systems?! The answer is no.
It's really more about the years. If you are going to sign ANY pitcher for 7 years, you'd better be sure that you're going to win it all at some point in that contract. You'd better be sure that your team is going to be ultra-competitive for the length of that contract and that the pitcher in question is going to earn his keep. Otherwise, you just tie up a big salary in a guy that is as good to you as a Major League minimum.
That is a pretty pitiful division.
I wouldn't be shocked if the Giants made the playoffs--might only take 85 wins.
Even so, it is criminally insane.
I'm a big fan of "the market" and all, but I don't see why teams have to 'get used to' these prices. The market works both ways. The 'going rate' is not some thing that is fixed in stone.
Don't teams have the option of simply not paying exorbitant rates and simply use minor leaguers for leagu minimum salaries, especially if the results are likely to be about the same?
I'm not saying this is the case with Zito, but you cite Meche as an example. The Royals could easily get comparable production for a fraction of the cost.
It seems that more and more teams are trying to just win one WS. There's no other way to explain why a team like the Giants, with no farm and a bunch of old guys would spend that kind of money. The smart money, in my opinion, would be to turn that $126 million into 5 or 6 good homegrown prospects and shoot for being the team of the 2010s. That would be far more interesting to me as a fan. That's just me though.
1) he left a comparatively small portion of baserunners on base. With the bases empty, he pitched like an ace. With runners on, they scored. His numbers will improve if he goes back to league average.
2) He suffered from a high BABIP. Again, if he has average luck, he'll be better than he was last year.
3) With runners on base, he had a much larger HR/FB ratio than with the bases empty.
4) Otherwise, he posted pretty decent peripherals.
I wouldn't mind trading him, but it's not an imperative. He's still a good pitcher.
At AA we have Marquez, and Wright (not Jaret, although he wouldn't be out of place pitching 5 innings a day). Marquez in particular has talent.
At A+ we will have Ian Kennedy and Joba Chamberlain. They profile as at least #3 with Joba a bona fide #1.
At A we are stacked with Betances, McAllister, Norton, Kontos, and Angel Reyes.
Not all will be big leaguers, we know, that but it is not impossible that by 2010 we could have 4 pitchers from the farm in our rotation. Not all will make it, but Wang is already there and ther could be many more to follow.
I hope only trade Johnson if they get in return
-- good value
-- where they need it (i.e., not more relief pitching prospects)
Besides, if Zito gets tired of losing, all he has to do is start whining like most gazillionaire athletes on loser teams or sick PitBoras on the GM and get himself traded, then exercise his traded-in-mid-contract rights and become a free agent again.
By the way, I see this contract mainly as as Boras recouping the money on the table that DM left in Boston. Verrry simple. There's always someone insecure enough to make a bad deal these days.
That's why he's the best at what he does.
I don't expect him to be awesome, but to be servicable.
On the Zito thing...I've had all day to reflect on it, and I still can't wrap my head around it. I can't wait to see the Giants sitting at home next postseason with Houston and Chicago. All those big spenders will be playing golf.
I can see Zito performing well enough in the NL to rationalize a big contract. That being said, that's a pretty big effing contract!
Glad he's not our albatross.
Here's hoping we've seen our last of Randy "the stork" Johnson. Can't stand watching that guy throw.
My stupid prediction: Pavano is comeback player of the year. Don't give up on him Cash. This time he really, really has changed.
None of them makes me jump, but if we can swing two of these guys for Unit, I'd do it. Keeping RJ is also okay with me to be honest, but I'd love to turn a guy that is surely out the door after 2007 into 2 guys that might be around for 10 years if everything works out with them.
If I had to pick, I'd take Micah Owings in a flash, and then maybe Ohlendorf. He's a bit better than Nippert in my estimation, although the 6'7" frame that Nippert brings to the game is imposing. I'd insist on Owings though.
I think if he stays, he will be better then last year. But at this point, he is not that hard to replace, and I'd love to see him GONE. His incident with the NY cameraman before he even donned a Yankee uniform told us all we need to know about RJ.
He is the anti-Murcer. I'd go to the airport to watch him leave.
It's time to build a statue for Cashman. Over then next few years, he will be buying drinks for many GMs and trying to talk them out of slashing their wrists.
If you look at teams salaries in 2005 and now in 2007, Cashman has done a great job closing the gap. He has resisted every pit of quicksand while other teams make deals that make our Pavano and RJ signings seem reasonable.
It's gonna be 1996 all over again pretty soon.
Thank you Brian Cashman.
And God bless Bobby Murcer.
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