Baseball Toaster was unplugged on February 4, 2009.
Todd Helton might not be the offensive beast he once was, but he ain't chopped liver, either. If he lands in Boston, the Sox will have some kind of formidable line-up, no?
How much of the salary is Boston responsible for? What prospects/players do they have to give up to get him?
I have read that the Rox would pay $40M, and they wanted a top prospect and Lowell or Clement.
While I realize that acquiring a 1B has become a great crusade for more than a few Yankee fans, it is worth noting that several contending teams do not currently have what you would consider strong offensive 1B, including Boston, Detroit, Oakland and Anaheim. Clearly, it would nice if the Yankees could find a more potent first base platoon, but it isn't that pressing of a need that the team should consider a long-term investment in a declining player such as Helton.
While I can understand the desire to get the best possible player at every position, regardless of the financial cost, that line of thinking has the potential to be counterproductive. For starters, Yankee fans need to come to the realization that at $200mn or so, the team has reached its limit. Like it or not, the Yankees can not simply keep spending. What Cashman seems to be trying to do is reduce the Yankee payroll, but not so the team can earn more profit. Instead, he is trying to create more flexibility in the payroll so the Yankees can strike on the very best of available players (i.e., Santana, Zambrano, Texiera, Jones, etc.). If the Yankees were to commit to Helton for five years, it would not only reduce payroll flexibility, but also commit the team to Helton for five years. Unless you can honestly say you like Helton enough to want to see him in pinstripes until 2011, then I don't think you can make this deal. Quite frankly, if 1B becomes that much of a problem, I'd rather see the Yankees go out and get Sexson, who is only under contract through 2008.
From the Red Sox perspective, the deal definitely makes sense for 2007. Assuming the per year cost is only $8-9mn/year, they would swap out Lowell for Helton and improve their offensive (although only marginally based on 2006 statistics). Depending on whom else they dump, the Red Sox may also be able to lower their current year payroll. Having said that, think about 2009
entering that season, the Red Sox will be on the hook for $40mn to cover Drew, Lugo and Helton. If that's not an albatross, then I don't know what is.
Finally, if the Red Sox have to give up Hansen and Delcarmen that further mitigates the benefits of the deal. While I don't think much of either pitcher, it was just a season ago that names such as Andruw Jones were being thrown around in deals involving those two. It would seem to me that Helton and his contract would represent a significant drop in relative return.
In comparison, the 2007 Sox will have two studs in Big Papi and Manny, but for the first time, the latter enters the season with some injury concern. After the big two, there are still lots of question marks: Varitek is coming off a poor/injured season; Youkilis is still only a slightly above average bat; Pedroia is unproven and had a poor intro. last season; Lugo has a career OPS+ of 92; Helton has been in steady decline (insert conspiracy theory here); Crisp still has to prove himself; and Drew is always a huge injury risk.
Clearly, if things fell into place, the Red Sox would have renewed potency in their lineup, but at this point, I don't think it is even close to Damon, Jeter, Abreu, Arod, Giambi, Posada, Matsui, Cano.
I don't think the Yankees need to pick up that type of salary anyway, but for those complaing about Cashman not being on the ball, that could be why.
I did think trading Sheffield for Helton was a good idea, depending on the cash Colorado would have thrown in, but even the current state of the Yanks' first base situation doesn't warrant getting Helton now. Not to have him under contract until 2011.
Sorry, hopefully that works. It suggests Helton would waive his no-trade to Boston, Atlanta and St. Louis.
Ben Kabak wrote this up from what appears to be a reasonable perspective over at Off The Façade. For anyone interested it's a decent read and may get a few in off the ledge. If Helton reverts to his animal form then Boston will have one hell of a lineup. If not and his back really is a problem then that's a lot of money either riding pine or sharing the DH spot with Papi.
Maybe when Lucky Luchino takes his people over to China as he says he's about to he can bring an acupuncturist home with him; Helton may appreciate it. :-)
1. Philip Hughes, rhp
2. Jose Tabata, rf
Very Good Prospects
3. Joba Chamberlain, rhp
4. Humberto Sanchez, rhp
5. Dellin Betances, rhp
6. Kevin Whelan, rhp
7. Tyler Clippard, rhp
8. J. Brent Cox, rhp
9. Ian Kennedy, rhp
10. Alberto Gonzalez, ss
bit surprised to see Gonzalez as the top rated prospect from the Unit trade...
Check (, check, check,) it out
Mark Teixeira, 26, is in the last year of his contract, getting paid $7m+/-. He's a switch-hitter, and a good defensive 1Bman, who has not hit his prime yet. Over the last 3 years, he OPS has been .886 (although last year was his worst of 3), but .983 AWAY from Texas.
What's he worth as an FA? Are his numbers better then Sori's? Better then Lee's? My guess is he's a 6/100 guy at minimum, and could be 7/126.
Can Texas afford that? What are the odds that he is available next year... or middle of this year? If he is, can anyone outbid the Yankees? What will Texas want in return (hopefully cheap pitchers)? Would Tex like to be a Yankee? If he signs for 7 years, he might be or greatest 1Bman in history, behind Gehrig.
I compared being a GM to playing chess. You don't simply move one piece, without considering both the positions of the other pieces, and what you want the board to look like in 2 or 3 moves.
If Cashman told us today that he was going after Tex as hard as he could... would that render the 'Helton moot'?
If so, we need to discuss what the odds, scenerios, impediments are to getting Tex.
15 I did read somewhere that Humberto Sanchez might have been the BEST SS glove in the minors.
I will ask again. What are the odds that Tex is a Yankee in 2008?
If you would like to complain about the DirecTV deal, you can contact MLB via email here: email@example.com
[from BM] "If you do write them, be nice. Starting out the first sentence with "What are you morons thinking?" probably won't get the rest of your complaint read. Yeah, I know, they are morons but no one likes to be reminded of it."
12 Here's the thing, in 1990 if you had the choice to acquire Donnie Baseball, at market prices for five years, would you?
Helton has been Donnie Baseball to the Rox, only significantly better numbers even on the road.
So when people say let the Sox get him, I cringe.
This isn't Nancy Drew - a guy every fanbase has been happy to see go.
This isn't Julio Lugo - a guy lucky to be an average hitter and fielder.
This is Todd Helton. And everyone predicting his rapid descent probably said the same thing about:
Helton is a baseball player - pure and simple. And I'm sorry if I'm the only one but I would love to have him on my team at the prices being advertised. He may become Donnie B after 1990, but his low (119 in 2006) hasn't been that low (80 OPS+ in 1990), and the guy flat out rakes.
Here's his comps through Age 32:
Chuck Klein (886) *
Jeff Bagwell (885)
Frank Thomas (878)
Joe DiMaggio (864) *
Rafael Palmeiro (841)
Carlos Delgado (841)
Manny Ramirez (840)
Hank Greenberg (836) *
Jason Giambi (832)
Jim Bottomley (831) *
* = HOF
Sure, he could fall off a cliff. But it's more likely than not, in this day and age, that he rediscovers his stroke.
Maybe the Damon signing changed my thinking. The guy came in and just did his job and did it well. Who cares that he's going to be overpaid in the last year or two?
Back to your regularly scheduled episode of the Bronx Branter.
"The no. 7 line was, for a long time, always first to receive technological upgrades from the MTA, another co-author of "The Subway and the City," John Henderson, said. "The no. 7 ran through high-quality neighborhoods, so a lot of new stuff arrived there first."
Didn't the 7 run redbirds until 2005? That train was always ancient. Nice neighborhoods? Times Square was pretty dumpy until recently, and Queensbridge is in the running for Most Insane Neighborhood In The Five Boroughs.
If the Sawx swap Tavarez, Lowell, and a prospect for Helton, someone please explain to me how this results in an offensive upgrade in 2007?
Helton and Lowell had very similar numbers in 2006, with Lowell hitting 20 HR's to Helton's 15, and batting in 80 to Helton's 81 RBIs. Helton's 2006 AVG, BB, SLG, OBP and OPS numbers were better than Lowell's, but one can not discount the Coors Field affect. Lastly, both are productive hitters who are very obviously in their declining phases.
So, the Sawx will trade an excellent defensive 3B, a middle reliever, and a prospect for an overpriced, declining 1B who may or may not be a marginal-at-best offensive boost? In fact, losing Lowell and gaining Helton is essentially a wash offensively.
As Yankee fans I think we should all hope for such a trade.
PECOTA, on the other hand, offers comparables for Helton going forward. FWIW, here are Helton's top comparables via his '07 PECOTA card (Similarity index 54, so pretty similar):
1 Wally Joyner 1996 63
2 Ryan Klesko 2005 60
3 John Olerud 2002 55
4 Will Clark 1998 52
5 Don Mincher 1972 51
6 Norm Cash 1968 49
7 Keith Hernandez 1987 48
8 Dale Long 1959 48
9 Bill White 1967 47
10 David Justice 2000 43
Most of those guys fell off the cliff statistically within two years (or sooner). Joyner, his top comp, from '96 (his age-34 season) to '01 averaged .279/.362/.408. In other words, what Stinky Minky has hit in his career.
I continue to not be worried.
That said, I feel that the most oft-rumored deal (Lowell and Tavarez for Helton) will improve the Red Sox for 2007, especially since Youk is not a huge step down from Lowell at 3B. I think the prospect of facing Helton/Ortiz/Ramirez/Drew 18 times this season could be daunting. Beyond 2007 it may be less than ideal... but remember the Yankees were one out from a World Series with Jason Giambi (2004: .208/.342/.379) at first base... I don't think Helton will ever be worse than that.
I will add that people who are talking about a "steep" or "steady" decline are overthinking his year 2006. If you want to lump 2005 into that (144 OPS+) you also have to explain why 2002 was the same (143 OPS+) and why he "returned to form" in 2003-2004.
Further, if you look at his monthly splits for 2006, you can see there was no steady anything - he was great, slumped, then great again (coinciding with the reported flu) then settled into well-above average but not a superstar.
So basically people are concluding the guy's finished because he had a less than stellar second half combined with a bad June.
30 Wally Joyner - I knew Todd Helton, and you sir are no Todd Helton.
Look at when those players put up those seasons in the context of the rest of their careers. It's not the same thing as their whole careers. Individual seasons vary significantly. So I think it's disingenuous to compare Joyner's 1996 year to Clark's 1998.
Regardless, the worry that everyone is expressing (Donnie Baseball circa 1990) is exceedingly rare. There's been no indication that Helton is that injured. Much more common is one down year followed by a resurgence - we've all seen it as players written off then coming back strong. Helton's the type of hitter IMHO where that's the greater possibility. The "steady" or "rapid" decline is a statistical illusion.
The bottomline is you just have to look at 2006, in isolation, and guess about 2007.
Me, I'm guessing one way and because of it I'd much rather see him in pinstripes than in bloody sox.
BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP
See, Cashman HAS to know better than allow Joe this chance, because we all know that there is no way in hell that he leaves Bernie off the roster. so please Cashman, don't do it!
Next season, the threshold increases so they will have some breathing room. Not to mention Clement and Schilling come off the books as well as several other smaller but could easily add up contracts.
Of course, the Sox are committed to quite a few long term contracts...Ortiz, Matsuzaka, Drew, and Lugo are undercontract for 2011 (well Ortiz, and Lugo have options)...they all make substantial money. If the rumors are correct, in 2011, the Sox will have to pay Helton 15.7M The Sox could ALREADY have $58.7M committed to their 2011 lineup which, by that time, would be very, very old.
Not that that should necessarily be a deterrent for the Red Sox. Their AAV (in the rumored deal) for Helton would be less than $10M.
Still though, they are taking lessons from the yankees of the early 00's. Long term contracts are a good way to ensure your team is old and can't move for a season.
And Donnie Baseball 1990 on was hardly worth Todd Helton money outside of New York. Look at it this way, would you give 10 mill to a guy averaging .290, .350, .420 with an ops+ of 100? I love Donnie as much as anyone, but if Helton puts up those #s, then I aint worried...
Ps: RIP Barbaro...
34 yeah, it's far from being a done deal. also seems as though Helton said he'll veto any deal if it's not done by the end of the week...
Is there anyone here, including the Sausage King, who would prefer a 34 yr old Helton to a 27 yr old Tex?
I guess I'm crazy. I though Tex was as important to a Helton discussion as Helton was.
Further, if they're not going to sign him, why wouldn't they trade him?
Anything the Yanks would give up for Helton pales in comparison to what they would have to give up for Teixeira - cash (100 vs 50 million) and players (a few good prospects versus one and MLB stiffs).
Sorry, it looks like apples and oranges.
da schill sez he won't play for the yanks in 2008. still pissed he wound up playing for the sawks.
Johan My Johan Watch:
"Talking contracts during the season is typically distracting, so if the two sides can't work something out by the end of spring training, Santana's tenure with the Twins could be in doubt.
If the team really wants to retain him they're probably going to have to do something soon," said Greenberg, who added that it would be unlikely for his client to seek an extension in the final year of his deal with free agency approaching. In that case, Ryan might have to trade him to avoid losing such a valuable pitcher without receiving other players in return."
Yeah, go for Helton; bury yourself in payroll. What the hell, you don't win this year, you're gone anyways, Larry -- this way you can screw it up so bad even your successors won't be able to win until the end of second decade. Thereby allowing you to claim the whole thing was unsalvageable anyways. Makes sense to me. Remember the Padres! Go Sawks!
Helton to the Yanks? Not unless we can get a couple more rhp...
We do not need 12 pitchers. With Johan My Johan, 11 is more than enough; thus freeing Bernie for one last hurrah and a permanent thread on Banter devoted to GOB Fanatics. "I don't care if he had the winning hit or started the rally.. did you see that lob he made? My grandmother can throw better than that..."
And how the hell does Tyler Clippard become an "average prospect". Let Phil Hughes get the print, Tyler is the man. I haven't felt this sure about anything since Colter Bean. I loved him.
You know I was thinking, with Johan My Johan in the starting rotation we could probably get by with 10 pitchers and bring Bubba back. BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP
Everything (stats, age) about Tyler says he's a solid #2 or #3 prospect. I hope the Yanks continue to believe in him.
It looks like that was a bogus excuse.
OK, I've got to call you on that one, Jim. 25+ years of statistical research concerning baseball has shown that the aging curve for hitters is very much real, and not a statistical illusion. Are there blips, a la Damon in '06? Of course - but I would strongly caution anyone who expects Damon to equal his '06 numbers in '07 to not get their hopes up. But the vast majority of hitters follow the curve, and after 28, the curve goes down. Sometimes more quickly than others, and not always perfectly smooth, but down nonetheless.
In other words, even after discounting Helton's '06 because of the injury, the downward trend is still there. In trying to identify a downward trend, I wouldn't look at OPS+, because it shifts from year to year depending on how the league as a whole hits, and league-wide levels of offense fluctuate from year to year. Instead, I'd look at his pure rate stats. Even looking at his translated rate stats (http://tinyurl.com/2bryof), you can see the downward trend in Helton's numbers.
And - more clear research results here - the most instructive view of what the player is going to do going forward is to look at the past three seasons, not the most recent season.
"Look at when those players put up those seasons in the context of the rest of their careers. It's not the same thing as their whole careers. Individual seasons vary significantly. So I think it's disingenuous to compare Joyner's 1996 year to Clark's 1998."
I think you misunderstood me. PECOTA is saying that Todd Helton's 2007 season is most likely to be similar to Joyner's '96 season, among all the possible comparable seasons for Helton's 2007 PECOTA projection. The 2nd most likely Helton '07 season is similar to Klesko's '05. The fourth most likely Helton '07 season is similar to Clark's '98, and so on. PECOTA is not saying that Joyner's 96 is comparable with Clark's '98 or David Justice in 2000, all of which are drastically different. I hope that clears things up, and sorry for any confusion!
If you compare the current situations of both teams, two things are apparent: the Yankees have a much stronger lineup and (assuming both teams are on equal financial footing), the Red Sox have more payroll flexibility. For those two reasons alone, Helton makes more sense for Boston than the Yankees.
As much as it would be nice to prevent the Red Sox from adding a useful piece, it wouldn't make sense for the Yankees to commit long-term, give up prospects and get slapped with an additional $4mn in luxury tax. If the Red Sox do acquire Helton, it will most likely improve the offense somewhat this season, while leaving the team with another questionable contract down the road. That is not an outcome that the Yankees should be desperate to prevent.
Now, that doesn't mean Helton isn't getting older. It just means that 2006 shouldn't be paired with 2005 and 2004 to indicate some downward linear trend.
Sure, he's going to get worse. But the slope is very much up in the air. This year will tell us much.
And I understood what you meant about the PECOTA. I just don't buy it. Any system that says Todd Helton in 2007 is most likely to be Wally Joyner in 1996 fundamentally misunderstands both Wally Joyner and Todd Helton.
FWIW, I don't think Helton will put up "Joyner in 1996" numbers in 2007 either. I'd like to see that if the Sox get him, though. =)
I think Helton will probably put up numbers similar to Will Clark's 1998, which is coincidentally similar to PECOTA's weighted mean projection of .303/.396/.501, 20 HR, 75 BB. Admittedly that's Helton projected as a Rockie, not a Red Sox, so the numbers will probably change if the trade goes through.
He struck out 64 times in 649 PA against 91 BB.
We'll see. The Rox owner is going on about how they need better talent in return. And the guys they want added are Craig Hansen and Manny Delcarmen to Tavarez and Lowell.
That's like the Yanks trading Cox and Beam and Vizcaino and Duncan.
I think I'm going to be sick.
If this is the case and the deal goes down as such ( I htink they'll only get one of them in the end mos tlikely) then the issue is less about money and way way way more about the Sox soon to be barren farm system. Hansen, the one time can't miss closer, and MDC, the can't miss set up man, go, leaving the system with Ellsbery, Buchholz, and Bard as top prospects, none of how rate higher than a B (Pedroia, Lester, and Papelbon already being on the team).
Its just one more example of how the Sox are consistantly inconsistant. They say they want to rebuild the farm, and then they destroy it. They say they don't want to spend money, then they do. Losing Hanson AND MDC AND tavarez leaves them very very bullpen weak...
Payroll flexibility. Youth. Wise Spending. Say these things over and over until you lose your love for aging veterans, Jim.
"What wasn't mentioned was that the Texas Rangers had, shortly before signing Rodriguez, negotiated a 10-year, $250 million cable agreement that was widely reported at the time as contingent on the team's signing a major Hispanic star. In all likelihood, the Rangers probably couldn't have made the deal without Rodriguez looming on the horizon. No one would say it, but Texas gave Rodriguez the money from the cable contract in expectation of profits on increased ticket and concession sales."
http://www.villagevoice.com/nyclife/0635,barra,74310,15.html (for those who can't handle TinyUrl)
Basically, if Hicks realizes the money's not there to retain Tex, he'll trade him likely at midseason, providing that the Rangers are not in the hunt for anything. That very well could be a card Cashman is waiting to play if something else doesn't surface beforehand.
And if Hicks does hold onto him, so what? Are there any Abreu-type rent-a-players on the market at midseason that? We've got prospects, or as my niece told me some elderly gentleman shrugged while saying to her at a friend's family get-together, "You wanna get married? I've got Mon-ey!"
If the Yankees were to explore such a deal, they would also want the Rockies to pick up the $40M as well as take back the bad contracts the Yankees have.
The remaining bad contracts the Yankees have however (unlike Lowell and Tavarez) are unmoveable.
It would be like sending Farsnworth and Pavano I think. Both pieces, I think, could net something better than Todd "I left my power in Colorado" Helton.
The Unit trade was just bad IMHO - not that he shouldn't have been traded.
I have no problem with youth if youth makes sense. For the Yanks at 1B, it doesn't
RH Relievers with live arms are a dime a dozen. They picked up Bruney off the scrap heap. For three of them and one year of Lowell. But I bet the final deal will be one of Delcarmen or Hansen. Yeah, at those prices I take Helton for 50 million. Sure it's five years, but that's less than what they're paying Giambi for the next two.
And I was happy with every move made by Boston this off-season. This one though is going to be scary all year long.
Repeat to yourself: He struck out 64 times in 649 PA against 91 BB.
In that bandbox, Helton is going to have fun. Sad but true.
As for the Sox's consistent inconsistency, you're absolutely right. But the beauty of their position is that RSN just won't care. Craig Hansen will be the next Mariano Rivera...oh, wait, I meant to say Todd Helton's going to hit 70 HR next year. Who's Craig Hansen? And those MFY, spending all that money to get Abreu, always trying to buy pennants!
Pavano and Farns for Helton.
The Yanks end up saving 5 million a year for each of the next two years and solve their 1B problem.
Too bad both Meat and Flames are Cashman's guys.
Anyway, your numbers and perceptions are also kind of flawed regarding Helton and regarding Fenway Park. In 2006, Coors had a Park Factor of 1.149, second highest in the majors (above 1.0 favors hitters). Fenway, meanwhile, was 13th at 1.031. Further, looking at home runs: there were 1.067 HR/game at Coors in 2006 (10th), but just 0.765 HR/game in Fenway... next to last in the league.
Given that Helton is a left handed hitter who will not benefit from the Green Monster as Lowell did, and also given that Helton hit a rather disgusting .266/.360/.421 on the road last season (with more strikeouts than walks, even- 40 to 38)... I don't see any reason to fear a monster season from Helton in 2007. Solid, perhaps, but not one to stike fear into all Yankees fans.
I wish there was a way to bet on outcomes like this. My money is on him having at least a 130 OPS+. The guy simply knows how to put the ball in play but has the extraordinary patience to go with it.
Use whatever stats you want to justify your warm blanket (40 to 38 K:BB ratio as evidence for your point!? Ha!).
Pecota is disregarded by ther rest of the SABR community for two reasons (somebody posted a link to an excellent article about it here last summer):
1. They won't show the rest of the stat world their formula. Every other SABR tool is readily available. EqA, Total average, Bill James original formulas and even his dippy recent one-every one is there for everyone to check. Except Pecota.
2. It's accuracy is nowhere near the better formulas. Every year a very high percentage of their predictions that are substantially different from the mainstream SABR ones are wrong.
Not as accurate and not transparent. I would think this kind of thing would go away, but it doesn't.
BTW SABR types never predicted a bright future for Henson, Ruben Rivera, or any of the other "examples" people that use the term "stat-heads" cite.
Lastly, why do people use things like OPS without park/league/era adjustment and then call others stat-heads? Are you saying using the more informative stats instead of the skewed ones is a bad thing?
OPS+ of 125 seems like a good benchmark to set as an over/under. Take the over if you think his injuries are healed. Take the under if you think he's aging, or think that something other than Park Effects influenced his production prior to 2005...
And right handed relief pitchers may be a dime a dozen, but Theo Epstein seems to have run out of change, since this trade would leave him without many.
Be patient. Use those chips to get something you really need in July like a top notch SP like Zambrano. Why waste it on a 1b especially when you get your sights set on Texiera?
Leftys cant benefit from the Green Monster???
Ask Yaz, Teddy Williams and Wade Boggs about that one.
What are the stakes?
On this end, I offer to shut up for a whole month next off-season.
How about, the loser has to spend one month of the 2007 off-season writing posts as if he were the other. You'd have to write about Karim Garcia and They Might Be Giants and I'd have to pretend I hate Cashman. Deal?
Of course, this bet is only on if Helton's on the Red Sox. And if either of us remembers this in ten months, I'll be surprised.
2000: .353 .441 .633
2001: .286 .383 .593 with a Gold Glove
2003: .324 .435 .514
2004: .326 .446 .544 with another Gold Glove
Yeah, he wasn't too good.
77 I'm not sure if that works because if the Yanks win a ring, Cashman is a genius :).
How about: I win, you type a four verse lyrical ode to my greatness for each thread in one week. You win, you get the same from me.
But yeah, it only applies if the Sox get Helton. Otherwise, he easily surpasses 125 OPS+. ;)
mehmattski, would you really want Rob Gee, I mean Jim Dean, to sing your praises on the Banter? If Mr. Dean is for something it seems like most everyone else is against it.
Sorry Jim, I call 'em like I see 'em, but if I ever need a defense attorney you are the man I'm gonna call. For the record, (don't tell anyone) I was with you on Helton (the Tennessee Vol QB blah, blah, blah notwithstanding).
83 Don't forget about about the utter scrub at UIF and the worst 1B in baseball.
Actually, I feel that rant passing. Though I may reserve the right to bash myself in the face a few times if Jorge misses any significant time.
84 Every one says that I should have been a lawyer. Unfortuntely, I have to have a passion for my subject. Visions of Donnie Baseball 2.0 made it easy.
1999 Giambi .315 .422 .553
2000 Helton 353 .441 .633
Giambi 333 .476 .647
Giambi's 49 points better.
2001 Helton 286 .383 .593
Giambi .342 .477 .660
Giambi's 161(!) points better
2003: Helton .324 .435 .514
2002 Giambi .314 .435 .598
Giambi's 84 points better (without skipping what must have been an off year for Helton.)
Helton's a good hitter made to look great by the park he played in.
Giambi was a great hitter, which is a whole different animal.
1) Will Minky do the job this year?
2) M. Cairo: Good enough for 2007
3) Do we really need a GOOD BUC?
4) Cashman: GM of the year candidate?
86 Yeah, I know, but baseballreference is free and doesn't list RATE. Still, Helton has won multiple Gold Gloves and the reputation is solid too (except for that interesting bit last year).
89 You mean how the A-Rod trade was dead?
1. If by "do the job" you mean, play very good everyday defense and hit .250/.350/.400, then yes he can. (Follow the thread here...)
2. Cairo is good enough for 2007, if "good enough" means above average defense at 2B, league average at SS, and iffy elsewhere while hitting .250/.300/.350. (Keep following...)
3. If a good backup catcher means .250/.315/.400, then we may have that in Wil Nieves. If it means better than that, then we're screwed.
4. Cashman: GM of the year candidate? Candidate? Yes. Winner. Probably no.
One point your missing that will complete my "follow me" thread is Bernie Williams. If we need a 5th outfielder that hits .265/.340/.430, then we have him in Bernie. What we also would have is... wait for it....
...the potential for a Joe Torre lineup in mid-June featuring Bernie in center, Nieves at BUC, Mister Mxyzptlk at first, and Miguel Cairo at 2B. He'd probably send that team out there in Game 2 of a 3 game series with Texas in Arlington, to give the regulars a break. He'd opt for defense over run support, as he'd explain it in the post game press conference after the team loses 6-1 behind Andy Pettitte. Thinking of this makes me all prickly (in a bad way).
Buit even just using the seasons you listed, Giambi blows him away.
What does Mattingly have to do with it? He had seasons where he was 149 points better than everyone else in average or below average hitter's parks. Helton's best seasons he still trails at least one other player by an average of 94 points just using the seasons you selected against the three consecutive by Giambi.
If we're selecting a player's 3 best seasons, let's look at two others from the same era:
1999 .333 .442 .663
2000 .351 .457 .697
2002 349 .450 .647
2003 .359 .439 .667
2004 .331 .415 .657
2005 .330 .430 .609
2006 .331 .431 .671
that's another great hitter (Pujols).
As I said, Helton's a good hitter, but he's not a great hitter and even in his best years there are players with far better numbers in neutral parks-unless you think 94 points (in the three seasons you selected vs. three consecutive seasons) isn't a big deal.
So far we've learned:
-Helton's not coming here. He won't waive his no-trade to be a Yankee.
-Col has said they aren't trading him.
-They wanted Boston's top two prospects and Lowell from Boston. I don't think anyone wants to trade two of our top pitching prospects and a regular (probably Melky) for him.
-He's had back problems recently and is 34.
-he's not nearly as good a hitter as you portray.
-He has a huge salary with five more years.
I like getting good players for every position. But sometimes the price is too high and the player isn't nearly as good as what we need to give up to get him. Helton certainly fits that description.
Let's break that down:
never = not ever; at no time in the past or future; "I have never been to China"; "I shall never forget this day"; "had never seen a circus"; "never on Sunday"; "I will never marry you!"
great = relatively large in size or number or extent; larger than others of its kind; "a great juicy steak"; "a great multitude"; "the great auk"; "a great old oak"; "a great ocean liner"; "a great delay"
I was merely showing that, yes, for most seasons he has been "great" irrespective of the park he played in.
I think the word you're actually looking for is:
1. Surpassing all others in excellence, achievement, or quality; most excellent: the best performer; the best grade of ore.
And on that point, I'll argee. Helton's never been the "best" hitter. Still, neither was Donnie Baseball and I'd still take a team of them.
Of course, he would have faced a lot of better pitching in the AL, wouldve missed Coors, and would have further made the sox lineup susceptible to lefthanded pitching.
Frankly, I think adding helton would have made the sox better than the yanks in the short term, worse in the long term and wouldve taken them out of the clemens sweepstakes.
You know Jim, maybe one of the reasons I have so much man-love for Ca$hmoney is because he's achieved something I didn't think possible - the most Torre-proof Yankee roster I've ever seen. No Bernie to play in CF or (shudder) RF. A capable 4th OF, so no washed up veteran OF dreck waiting in the wings if things go horribly wrong (a la T-Ball Long). A plethora of 1B that are OK and should mean Miggy Cairo never plays 1B again. And best of all, no Tanyon Sturtze or equivalent useless veteran dreck in the bullpen for Torre to consistently use in important situations, including the late innings and spot starts. Even if Scott Proctor's arm falls off, there's like 9 other righty pitchers ready to take his place (as you are so fond of pointing out). =)
It is happiness over this that lets me live with Wil Nieves (or even Todd Pratt) and the Stinky Minky-Dandy Andy-Posh Josh firstbase trio.
The only improvement, I think would be having a legit 1B and no Cairo. As it is, there will be games MCI starts against a lefty and Cairo starting at all but hopefully those will be few and far between.
And there's still time yet to sign Bernie to muck up everything! Still Cashman brought in Long last year so I'll reserve full happy tones until Thompson and Beam are the first reinforcements called upon. It's just after that (in the IF especially) that things could get ugly, really ugly.
The bullpen - this is true. Going into the season though Proctor and Bruney would seem high on the guts list long after their performance suggests they should be buried.
Helton's career road OPS is 900. I feel very comfortable very calling that "great" esp. with everything else he's done (at home and at 1B). If he played his whole career at Yankee stadium he would have been the second coming of Donnie Baseball.
Helton would have been a fine pickup at 50 million but not the now reported 65. Go Stinky Phelps Phillips!
Helton was a great hitter at Coors, a veryexcellent hitter elsewhere. Helton WAS a premiere player. Don't argue over the word 'Great'. Its getting silly.
What Helton will be in 2007 could go either way. In park-neutral stats, he could have a .920 OPS or an .820 OPS. Neither would surprise anybody. Debating the point is silly. In 2009-2011, in park-neutral terms, it's anyone's guess. Some people recover/get past back injuries (Vlad), some people are ruined by them (Donnie).
In 2007 and 08, Helton would probably help either the Yanks or the Sox (IF Tex doesn't sign instead). The cost of Helton in 2009 and beyond? Very questionable. I think you need to know the Yankees gameplan for the next few years, to have an educated opinion.
Yeah, Bernie's going to hang around Scranton and wait to be called up, slowly strumming his guitar for the rooks.
The question is: What gameplan?
You mean like the one to replace all the aging players. Like the one to replace Bernie that took three years past his due date to implement?
Or you obviously mean the one to replace Jorge? Oh wait...
No it must be the one to replace Giambi? I'll hope with you about Teixeira though he will be expensive. Keep in mind that this is now year 2 of the "scrubs at 1B" plan.
Sure I feel good about all the RHP prospects. But let's not go crazy assuming some grand master plan, when Cashman's had plenty of time and opportunity to show us one. "Acquire more pitching" should only be one part of a plan - not the whole thing.
But for upteenth time - it's just the Unit trade that make me want to puke. The Shef deal I liked. And while they could have gotten more for Wright, that's minor.
So here's a guy who is 34, has injury questions, has played in one of the top hitters parks for years AND has never been a great road hitter in the NL. I guess I wonder why anyone would think that he's going to revert to 2003.
I'm not saying he can't be productive or that he wouldn't be better than stinky minky, but I just don't think the yanks should get that wrapped up into a guy that's owed tha much money for so many years. If the sox want to have a "win now" attitude, then I say go ahead.
Incidentally, bill James projects him as a .322 avg, .433 obp, .543 slg, and .977 ops this year with 25 hrs (albeit at coors), and he's projected to have a low injury risk so maybe James and his minions know something I don't.
The same book has drew as a high risk of injury
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