Monday, December 07, 2009

Let the Meetings begin...

Today the Winter Meetings being in frigid Indianapolis, a far cry for last year's meetings in Las Vegas (I guess the economy is finally catching up with baseball).

Should see some interesting stories develop over the next 3 days and the market should really start to take shape for certain players.

I'm not totally shocked that Andy Pettitte has rejected the Yankees initial offer of 1 year $10MM. I don't know a lot of the other details but Andy made $10.5 last year with incentives. I imagine a $10MM contract with options up to $12-13 would get it done. I don't think he's looking for a multi-year deal, since he seems to be uncertain on retirement every year. Yankees are said to not be interested in Lackey, but have shown interest in Sheets, Harden, and Ducscherer. I think this makes sense.

Toronto is said to be looking for a catcher, starting pitcher, and shortstop in return for Halladay. They Yankees have a surplus at those positions right now in the farm system. I can't see any reason they don't step up and get this deal done.

The Cubs have shown interest in Mike Cameron and Jason Bay is leaning heavily toward Seattle. That doesn't leave a whole lot for the Yankees to fill that LF void on the market...Damon or Holliday???

This story makes me laugh at the Mets...Mets are showing interest in Pat Burrell and Gary Matthews Jr. 2 terrible contracts for aging under performing players. Not quite the deals the Mets really need to be looking at to be contenders in the NL East.

Lastly, on a non-MLB note...The NY Giants finally pull out a big win yesterday over Dallas. If they can beat the Eagles next week they suddenly have the inside track on the division.


old professor said...

The offer to Pettitte apparently was made shortly after the world series ended. While Pettitte keeps saying he is not sure whether he wants to return, the question has to be asked - did he balk at the $10 million or the fact that it was a one year contract?

Apparently and executive in the National League is convinced the Yankees will finalize a deal with Pettitte sooner than later. If may also be a sign they will make an offer to Damon.

If the Yankees do bring Pettitte and Damon back, they will not be able to lay a sizeable amount of cash on the table for any of the other top free agents.

Crash said...

Old Prof the Pettitte offer was made over the weekend. I disagree with your assessment on signing Damon and Pettitte. The Yankees could sign either a couple B level parts or a superstar at $20MM and still be under last year's team salary.

Crash said...

George King of the Post is saying teams are calling the Yankees on Brian Bruney...the Braves are said to be interested. The Braves already signed 2 guys for their bullpen and has another leaning toward accepting arbitration (Sorriano). It would be an odd move. Braves are actively seeking trades for Derek Lowe with no one wanting to pay that contract, and the Braves don't want to eat any of it either. Not saying these two things are related...but you never know. If the Yankees were willing to take the entire salary they wouldn't need to give up a lot. Let's see how it plays out.

Crash said...

Contradicting reports now coming out. No "official" offer was made to Pettitte, but one will be offered today and it will be worth more than $10MM.

Phillies looking to deal Joe Blanton.
Cubs will trade Milton Bradly, they were talking to the Royals about swapping Bradly for Meche. Still the possibility to the Rays for Burrell but Tampa has to pick up the difference between the two contracts.

Mets are not interested in Pat Burrell.

Nothing else of significance at the moment.

Crash said...

Brian Bruney acquired by the Nationals. No word yet on what the Yankees will receive in the deal.

old professor said...

Amazing, in the morning, Bruney is going to the Braves, by the afternoon he becomes a member of the Nationals for a player or players to be named later.

The move opens a spot in the bullpen - do the Yankees sign someone or put Hughes or Chamberlain permanently in the pen?

Crash said...

Some random updates...

Yankees want to resolve Andy Pettitte and Johnny Damon before pursuing Matsui and starting pitching help.

Brian Cashman will meet with Mark DeRosa's agent this week.

The Hednricks brothers, agents for Cuban defector Chapman, will meet with the Orioles. Yankees are said to be interested if they can get him for less than $15MM.

Phil Hughes and Austin Jackson is the asking price for Curtis Granderson. Don't think that deal is going anywhere, just my opinion though.

The Angels are very interest in both Granderson and Edwin Jackson. D'backs are also interested in Jackson.

Cardinals are close to signing Bard Penny.

Nick Johnson drawing a lot of interest.

Brewers showing heavy interest in Randy Wolf.

That's it for now. I'm thinking something good/big happens late tonight.

Crash said...

The Rays contacted the Jays about Roy Halladay??? Possible offer is Wade Davis and BJ Upton. That is a legit offer from the Rays. Halladay may approve a deal to Tampa as he lives in the area.

Crash said...

Cubs interested in Melky???

Crash said...

While Cashman would not comment on the possible non-tender of Wang he did say they were watching his rehab.

Yankees have called about Kelvim Escobar and Jason Marquis. Those guys could be #4 or 5 guys if the money is right.

old professor said...

Granderson isn't worth either of those players even up. The Yankees will not go after a guy that is a liability against left-handed pitchers (or is it right-handed - either way he is nothing more than a platoon hitter).

So the Rays over two players to the Jays - the price apparently they are asking from the Yankees and Boston are mutch steeper.

The best bet is Halladay will be traded to the Angels.

As for the Cubs interested in Melky - he will not be traded until the Yankees settle their outfield questions. (And while Gardner is a good fielder and has great speed, he is not that much of an offensive threat).

Wang will be back in a Yankee uniform - they may not tender him an offer, but will eventually resign him.

old professor said...

Okay, this is absolutely nuts - there is a report of a three-way deal being brewed up between the Yankees, D-Backs and Tigers.

Here is what apparently is on the table: The Yankees get Granderson from the Tigers and two prospects from the D-backs. the De-backs would receive (ready for this) - Edwin Jackson from the Tigers, Austin Jackson, Phil Coke, Michael Dunn and Ian Kennedy from the Yankees. The Tigers would receive Max Scherzer from the D-backs.

The Yankees would be out of their minds to part with that kind of talent to receive Granderson and two prospects.

old professor said...

Correction - the Tigers would get Dunn, Coke and Jackson. While the D-backs get Kennedy. I don't care which way those players go - it would still be one of the worst deals in Yankee history.

Crash said...

That deal absolutely sucks. Yankees get Granderson and give up 4 of their best young players.

So Tigers would have had: Max Scherzer, Austin Jackson, Phil Coke, and Michael Dunn.

Dbacks: Ian Kennedy and Edwin Jackson

Yankees: Granderson.

D'backs are giving up 1 player and getting 2 very good pitchers.

Even if you remove Kennedy from that deal I wouldn't do it.

Personally I hold onto all those guys and go sign Damon or Cameron for the OF and a couple of those second tier pitchers (Harden, Sheets, etc).

old professor said...

Crash, once again you and I agree on an issue. Jackson's value to the Yankees is greater than the teaming getting Granderson. I would really like to know who in the team's leadership is so sold on Granderson. (I am hoping the Granderson issue is a smokescreen aimed at bringing Damon's asking price down).

Regarding Coke, I am not sold on him as a reliable piece out of the pen. He gave up far too many homeruns last year. Dunn projects out for another year in the minors, but you can't argue with a 98 mph fastball. Kennedy should be a #4 or 5 in the Yankee rotation.

I am also confused over Cashman's message that pitching depth is important to the team and the bullpen is good to go. So if those statements are true, then why are the Yankees dumping pitching (e.g. Bruney0for a player to be named later; looking to dump three pitchers and a five tool prospect for a weak hitting outfielder that is past his prime and a couple of prospects?

Crash said...

I think pitching is a top priority because they only have 2 starters right now. All indications are Pettitte will be back at $11MM + incentives. With Pettitte coming back for sure, the Yankees are not hard pressed to pursue Halladay or Lacky.

The Bruney trade was a Girardi move. Girardi had no faith in him nearly the entire season. Fact is Bruney had 1 good season and hasn't shown the consistency needed for a late inning guy.

I think the bullpen will be handled internally. You have to think that at least one if not both Hughes and Joba will be back there, then you have Robertson, and Marte. Coke is still young and he's a lefty (which is why teams are interested). He was real good for a big part of the year, but showed some immaturity on the mound. I think you see Dunn make the team out of spring. That gives you 3 lefties in the pen. You also have Aceves and Gaudin who could be used as long relief. And Melancon will get another shot. That was his first taste of the bigs last season, he was their "future closer" so they won't give up on him after only 16 innings of big league ball. His minor league numbers are too good (12-2, 2.54, .964 Whip and nearly a strike out per inning).

old professor said...

So based on your statements: Coke is young and a lefty; Dunn will make the team out of spriing training, why would the Yankees be giving up on them and putting them into a package to get a mediocre outfielder?

Robertson instead of Bruney makes sense - He throws strikes has two very good pitches and doesn't get rattled on the mound. Bruney has major league stuff, but doesn't seem to have a good thought process and does not keep concentration. Both individuals have experienced arm troubles, which leaves a durability question mark over Robertson's head.

if the reports on the Bruney trade are correct, the Yankees will receive the National's first pick in the Rule 5 Draft. Okay they must have someone in mind to use the pick on - only one problem - the individual picked has to make the team and stay with them or be returned to the team that lost the player. So if things don't go as hoped, the Yankees could be giving Bruney to the Nationals for nothing.

Crash said...

Granderson is a Yankee. Edwin Jackson to the D'backs.

Yankees give up Ian Kennedy (to AZ) and send Coke and Jackson to Detroit.

The speculation is that Melky Cabrera is now expendable, as Granderson would play CF, and the Chicago Cubs are interested in him.

Crash said...

Does the Granderson trade eliminate the Yankees from the Halladay discussions??? I think so.

Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports talks about Mike Cameron. He names the Mariners, Cubs, Red Sox, and Yankees as potential landing places for Cameron. Rosenthal notes that Cameron would move from center to left field for the right team.

My guess is "the right team" would be the Yankees since they just traded for a CF.

Some very strange "rumors" are popping up and I hope it is not what I'm about to write. The Cubs have been trying desperately to dump Milton Bradley. Now besides his attitude problems, he has a significant contract. We all know what team can afford to take on big contracts. Additionally the Cubs are close to a trade with a "surprise AL team". Yesterday the Cubs were said to be very interested in Melky Cabrera.

I hope I'm wrong...but I just don't like the way this is adding up.

Something I think most of us will like, Sheets' agent will meet with both the Yankees and Mets in the next day.

Angels & White Sox are showing strong interest in Matsui.

Brewers made a big offer to Randy Wolf (3 years $31MM)...really??? for Randy Wolf???

The Pirates are being linked to a bunch of second tier free agents. Good for them. They'll still suck and trade a bunch of them in July anyway.

Crash said...

Yankees re-signed Pettitte for one year at $11.75MM

old professor said...

Crash, i cannot understand the trade for Granderson. The gave up so much to land a guy who hit 249 last year, cannot hit left handed pitchers and had some trouble in the outfield near the end of the season.

Glad to hear Pettitte re-signed with the Yankees. That will lessen the need for Halladay.

Crash said...

All of the "experts" say the deal is a slam dunk for the Yankees and Tigers. They are also saying the D'backs are idiots for doing this deal. I would agree this is a bad deal for the D'backs, and they were the ones pushing this thing.

Essentially Granderson is a more athletic Nick Swisher. .250 30 HRs, but will give you steals. If he cuts down on strikeouts and walks a little more he will be great.

Now the question is who gets traded Swisher or Melky? If they bring back Damon or sign Cameron, Holliday, or Bay, then either Melky or Swisher will be traded. If they sign Cameron, the OF is very very good defensively.

Apparently acquiring Roy Halladay isn't out of the picture yet. I keep seeing Joba and Montero will get the deal done.

Crash said...

Kevin Millwood traded to Baltimore. Baltimore sends over Chris Ray to the Rangers in return. Ray was their closer.

I think this is a good deal for both teams. Baltimore gets a veteran pitcher who can serve as a mentor to that young staff. Orioles are loaded with good young arms, Millwood is a good guy to have around them.

And Texas struggled with their bullpen last year and Ray is a nice fit there.

Crash said...

If people thought they were going to find Ben Sheets in the bargain aisle, better think again. He's looking for similar money that he made before his injury, $12MM.

He's not worth the risk at that price. And I would be very surprised if he comes any where near that in guaranteed money. I would think an incentive deal like Pettitte had last year would be good; base salary of $5-6MM then incentives up to $10-12MM.

Crash said...

Harden is close or has agreed with a team, but details of the deal including the team is unknown at this time. Might be the Mariners, they were the team most recently discussing things with him.

Crash said...

The mystery team with Rich Harden is the Rangers. No word on the details of the deal, not official yet.

Crash said...

So Harden does sign with the Rangers 1 year 7.5MM with incentives up to $11.5...WOW that's big time money for pitcher that hasn't reach 150IP in 5 years and has never gone 200IP. Harden just set the Market for Sheets.

Looks like Roy Halladay could be going to LA Angels. They have an offer in to the Jays of Joe Saunders, Erik Aybar and Peter Bourjos. If you're the Jays I wouldn't even shop that offer to the other teams, I would just call Roy and ask him if he wants to move to LA.

If the Yankees want him they would have to give up Joba, Montero and others, probably Pena or Russo!!! I say forget it and sign Lackey or even Sheets if you can get him at $7-8MM.

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