Just say no to Bronson Arroyo


It all started yesterday afternoon. AOL FanHouse’s Jeff Fletcher noted that the Reds were “close to doing something,” meaning the completion of a trade. The likely candidates were Bronson Arroyo, Aaron Harang, and Francisco Cordero. Each makes quite a large sum for the rest of this year and next, and with the Reds out of contention it would make sense for them to get out from under at least one of those contracts. Any time we hear that something is close, ears perk up. It didn’t take long for Fletcher to find out which deal the Reds were “close” to.

About two hours after his original report, Fletcher wrote the the Reds and Yankees were working on a deal for Bronson Arroyo. This sent a tremor through the Yankees fanbase. Why in the hell would they want Bronson Arroyo? He’s pitched progressively worse every year since the Red Sox traded him to the Reds, and he’s owed a ridiculous amount of money for the remainder of this year and next. Considering the monetary and potential player costs of acquiring Arroyo, an easy case could be made that the Yankees would be better off standing pat.

A 1995 third-round pick of the Pittsburgh Pirates, Arroyo struggled in his first few seasons, allowing way too many hits while walking too many batters for his strikeout rate. In February of 2003, after stints over the previous three seasons, the Pirates placed Arroyo on waivers. The Red Sox picked him up. He wouldn’t join the big league club full-time until 2004, but when he arrived he did not disappoint, posting a 3:1 K/BB ratio over 178.2 innings.

The next year wasn’t so kind to Arroyo. He pitched 205.1 innings for the Sox, but his strikeout rate plummeted from 7.2 per nine in 2004 to 4.4 per nine in 2005. This helped cause a half-run increase in his ERA. Still, the Sox apparently thought he was still worth holding onto, signing him to a three year, $11.25 million contract in January 2006. Little did Arroyo know that the contract would be his ticket out the door.

In March 2006, the Sox swapped Arroyo and $1.5 million for Wily Mo Pena. In essence, Arroyo had agreed to a team-friendly deal, only to have it used as trade bait. Whether it was the effect of pitching in the NL, the desire to prove the Red Sox wrong, or just sheer luck, Arroyo pitched insanely well in 2006, posting a 3.29 ERA over 240.2 innings, bumping his strikeout rate back up to around seven per nine, and improving his K/BB ratio to 2.88:1, up from 1.85:1 in 2005. The Reds thought they had found a gem, while Wily Mo languished with the Sox, and would eventually be traded in August 2007.

Apparently not content to ride out the remainder of Arroyo’s team-friendly deal, the Reds signed him to a two-year, $25 million extension in February of 2007. The move was perplexing at the time. Why would the Reds, with Arroyo under contract for two more seasons at an eminently reasonable rate, sign him for two additional seasons, plus an expensive club option, with a relatively expensive buyout, for 2011? His 2007 performance would add to those questions.

In his second year in Cincinnati, Arroyo made one fewer start than in his first, but pitched 30 fewer innings. His WHIP rose from 1.19 to 1.40. One reason for his decline is the rise in his number of hits per nine innings — almost 10 in 2007, compared to 8.3 in 2006. His ERA rose yet again in 2008, to 4.77, below league average. Again he made 34 starts, but pitched 10 fewer innings than in 2007. His WHIP took another jump to 1.435. All this before the contract extension kicked in.

This is the first year of the extension, and Arroyo has not earned his $9.5 million to this point. His ERA sits at 5.21, the worst it’s been since 2001, and which also places him as the league leader in earned runs allowed. His WHIP has climbed again to 1.472. Worst of all, his walk rate is near 3.5 per nine, and his strikeout rate is just 5.3 per nine, down from 7.3 per nine last season. He’s essentially gotten worse with each passing year on the Reds.

Arroyo has posted a few gems this year, including a July 10 complete game shutout of the Mets. He followed that up with seven innings of shutout ball against the Brewers. However, in his last start against the Dodgers he posted another clunker, five runs over 5.1 innings, including four walks. It’s just another start in Bronson Arroyo’s horribly inconsistent 2009 season.

With all this in mind, it’s difficult, if not impossible, to understand why the Yankees would want to acquire Arroyo. He’s pitched well in the past, but he’s certainly not the pitcher he claimed to be in 2006. His contract is among the worst in the game, and he’s still owed $13 million next season, considering his buyout. Bad pitcher + bad contract = bad acquisition. It’s as simple as that. So why are the Yankees connected with this guy?

Apparently, the rumor was just that. As PeteAbe noted, the Yanks shot it down. Jon Heyman got a quote saying that a trade is “not realistic at this point.” Even Fletcher, whose source said that the deal “will get done,” subsequently removed the line from his post. All seems to be right again for the Yankees.

There are still three more days until the 4 p.m. trade deadline on Friday, and the Yanks could certainly make a move for a pitcher before then. As we noted yesterday, the Yanks might not be able to acquire a significant target after the deadline, because the Sox are in second place and could block a potential move. Both teams would benefit with an upgrade at the backs of their rotations. Despite his overtures, expect Cashman to treat this deadline with a sense of urgency. If there is a deal to be made, expect him to pursue it. We just hope it’s not for Bronson Arroyo.


  1. James says:

    His first year in Cincy was Money… that’s about it… and yes, i did Cringe… would kill me to see him in pinstripes.

  2. Tony says:

    I don’t see the huge problem with him filling some of the $40mil coming off the books and providing a reliable source of IP out of the 5th spot. Maybe it’s just me…

    Also, I’d rather have two Bronson Arroyos next year than watch them sign Matt Holliday long term. Where do you think that money is going to go?

      • Tony says:

        But see, it’s not my money. There’s no benefit to me or any other fan if they sit on 12 million rather than spend it on even a middling to bad 5th starter. He’s better than a Sergio Mitre, would save the bullpen on his days, and then would be gone for the offseason when there might be someone worthwhile to sign.

        • Tony says:

          To clarify: We’re not talking about them spending that 12 million to the detriment of anything else. I mean literally sit on it, as in stuffing it into their wallets. It’s a no lose acquisition as far as next year is concerned. They’ve always had far worse at the back of the rotation, but from guys that are giving 4-5 innings on a consistent basis.

          • Rick in Boston says:

            Yeah, but it’s 6 innings of 5-run pitching. That’s awful. At least with someone like Hughes in the 5 spot next year, there’s a very good chance he’ll do better than a 5.21 ERA. We’re taking a guy from the NL Central and asking him to do it in the AL East – that 6.2 or so IP/start and 5.21 ERA will look something like 4-5 IP, 6 ER’s.

            • Tony says:

              6 innings of 5 run pitching is Sergio Mitre. Do we really need to wildly exaggerate this? It’s more like 6-7 innings with 3-4 runs. The Yankees would love to have that out of #5. Let’s try to be objective about the situation.

              • Rick in Boston says:

                We are. The guy goes 6 IP now and has an ERA of over 5 in the NL Central. You’re asking him to improve by over 2 runs by moving to the toughest division in baseball?

                • Tony says:

                  Do you know how ERA works?

                • C Bleak says:

                  Arroyo has a 5.21 ERA in the NL. Do you think that is going to get better or worse moving to the AL? I think it would be reasonable to think he would pitch to a 5.75 or around there ERA in the AL thus no improvement over Mitre and spending a lot of money on him to boot. Then are we actually going to give up a prospect for him?

              • Joseph M says:

                I have a cheaper alternative, the Yanks can bring Rasner back from Japan.

        • jsbrendog says:

          but he wouldn’t be gone becaue he is under contract for next year as well as a $2 million dollar buyout if we don’t want him in 2011.

          • Tony says:

            A $2 million dollar buyout is nothing for them.

            1. So you’re okay with Sergio Mitre at 4 and Pitcher X at 5 for September? If Arroyo costs nothing in prospects, I would take him every day of the week over Mitre in that 4 spot.

            2. Next season it’s CC-AJ-Joba-Hughes-Arroyo, which I have zero problem with, especially considering the possible inning limitations of Joba and Hughes w/ lack of stretching out and young pitcher inconsistency.

            3. There is no one on the free agent market for 2010 worth giving significant portions of the Damon/Matsui/Pettitte/Nady money to. I’d rather sink some of it into Bronson Arroyo to give me a lot of innings out of #5 (this IS worth something) than have Matt Holliday on the books forever at 30.

            4. It does me no good to have the Yankees at 170 w/ a huge questionmark at 5 than 180 with Arroyo at 5 because they wanted to save some money. My argument is that Arroyo, even if he’s not even close to good on the mound, provides a tangible benefit by simply throwing a lot of innings and being durable out of the 5 spot. We saw what happened earlier when Joba and Wang/Hughes were consistently giving them super short outing and throwing the bullpen into chaos. Arroyo might suck, but he’s not going to come out because he’s fatigued after 4.

            • All of that is full of false dichotomies and undistributed middles.

              • Tony says:

                It’s not a false dicotomy in practice. The Yankees’ actual salary ceiling will be 40-50 million over the November 1 payroll into next season. They don’t HAVE to spend that money, but there is no benefit to me as a fan if they don’t. My point is that one year of Arroyo at an inflated price is better long-term that multiple years of anyone else on the market for 2010.

                Option A: Have Arroyo signed for one more year at 12 million. – Benefit to me as a Yankee fan.

                Option B: Sign someone else for one year in 2010 who will not have the injury reliability/endurance of Arroyo. – Not beneficial to me as a Yankee fan. And if you’re seeing someone I’m not, please tell me.

                Option C: Sign no one else for 2010, have the 5 spot be a huge hole going into opening day. – Not beneficial to me as a Yankee fan.

                The “I’d rather have this done then signing of a sub-elite player for elite money/years” corollary is based on an assumption that they won’t go into 2010 having shed so much money and not moved a significant portion of it elsewhere. That is an assumption, so feel free to ignore it. I think past history indicates that they probably would.


                Bronson Arroyo provides reliable innings at league average production at an insignificant number. He is also a much better option that Sergio Mitre, ESPECIALLY if Joba has to go to the bullpen in a month. That’s my point.

                • jsbrendog says:

                  below league average. he has the worst era in the nl

                  “His ERA sits at 5.21, the worst it’s been since 2001, and which also places him as the league leader in earned runs allowed.”

                  this is in the nl central. dude, come on.

                • Tampa Yankee says:

                  Mike Francesca, is that you, you silly, fat, obnoxious man?

                • Tony says:

                  Sergio Mitre is horrible. Dude, come on.

                  Do you think Sergio Mitre/2009 Wang would be pitching at Arroyo’s level to this point in the season? I certainly do not.

                • jsbrendog says:

                  arroyo is the worst pitcher in the WHOLE NATIONAL LEAGUE when it comes to NOT LETTING RUNS SCORE

                • Tony says:

                  Is there a reason for you to just make things up here? Just asking.

                • Chris says:

                  To be fair, there are 6 starters in the NL that have enough innings to qualify for the ERA title and have worse ERAs. There are 45 better.

                  He has given up the most earned runs in the NL (because he’s a horse that eats innings).

                  If you include the AL, there are 9 higher ERAs, and one pitcher has allowed more earned runs (that would be Carl Pavano).

                • jsbrendog says:

                  exactly. no one has given up more earned runs. NO ONE in the NL.

                  it is in the article above if you read it.

                  “His ERA sits at 5.21, the worst it’s been since 2001, and which also places him as the league leader in earned runs allowed”
                  (second time i’ve pasted it)

                  he is the worst at not giving up runs.

            • Rick in Boston says:

              No, he’s going to come out after 4 when Girardi pulls him after another 4 or 5 ER.

        • There’s no benefit to me or any other fan if they sit on 12 million rather than spend it on even a middling to bad 5th starter.

          Yes, there is. There’s the benefit of not getting locked into a bad contract that creates negative opportunity costs. Signing Arroyo just because he’s “a guy” prevents us from having the payroll flexibility of adding a Mike Cameron, or a Rafael Soriano, or a Chone Figgins… you know, someone who will actually help our team.

          And, if none of those other guys are available, wait until the trade deadline, or the next offseason, and invest the money wisely.

          But don’t spend it just to spend it. That’s how you end up with Kyle Farnsworth or Jaret Wright.

          • Rick in Boston says:

            There’s also the assumption that there’s just $12 million sitting around burning a whole in Cashman’s pockets. The Yankees have a budget – it’s not as a hard-capped budget as other teams, but one exists. Considering the economy and the fact that there have been more non-sell outs than the team expected in the new ballpark, the budget might not be as high next year.

            • cult of basebaal says:

              and don’t forget, since the Yankees are over the luxury tax limit, any salary they take on *could* potentially be looked at costing them the luxury tax on it (which is, what, 1.5x at where they are now?).


              • Sitting on the money and holding an open tryout between Wang/Mitre/IPK/Nova/McAllister


                seeing who shakes free in the late winter on a buy-low rehab deal like what the Sox did with Smoltz or Penny (like, say, Ben Sheets, or Kelvim Escobar, or Jason Schmidt)


                bringing back Andy for another go round


                handing the 5th spot to Bronson “I eat innings in a way that leaves everyone fat, bloated, and morbidly obese teetering on the edge of massive organ failure” Arroyo

    • thebusiness says:

      you can get anyone to throw 200 innings for a lot less than that.

      • King of Fruitless Hypotheticals says:

        OOH! OOH! I’ll do it!!!

        (hey come on, i’ve got nearly as much chance as Arroyo does…on a related note, when i ran for President, Mondale only got 13 more electoral votes than i did…)

  3. K.B.D. says:

    I’d be in favor of them getting Duchscherer. I’d hope it wouldn’t take a prospect like Zach McAllister to get him.

    • jsbrendog says:

      it makes me doubt the “modest prospect” rumor since the yankees haven’t even been mentioned with duchscherer….weird

      • Reggie C. says:

        Not sure if Billy Beane is the type to take the first “modest prospect” offer. I’m sure Cashman realizes this and is going to wait a couple days to see what else develops before calling Beane.

      • K.B.D. says:

        Hopefully they’re just flying under the radar.

  4. jsbrendog says:

    it’s over. we might as well concede. Boston just got brian anderson. and we were so close.

  5. Evan NYC says:

    He would let up far too many long balls in NYS. Pass.

    • Nick says:

      Arroyo is honestly trash. I would call for cash to resign or be fired if he made a deal for arroyo. There is no benefit and has been one of the worst pitchers in all of baseball.
      - I bet Bo would want Arroyo

  6. Adam says:

    come on cash you are better than this…

    i don’t know if this counts as off topic… i hear whispers that the m’s could make felix available at some point either in the winter or next year… I would give up montero easy for him, any thoughts?

  7. Reggie C. says:

    From MLBTR:
    1:57pm: Yahoo’s Gordon Edes reports that the Red Sox offered Clay Buchholz, Michael Bowden and Ryan Westmoreland to the Blue Jays for Halladay. In my opinion, that is a very strong offer. Edes says the Jays would like to acquire a shortstop since they are “vigorously shopping” Marco Scutaro. That means the Sox might need to get creative.

    - Theo is apparently trying to keep me from getting a good night’s sleep.

    • Reggie C. says:

      Dang…I thought this was an open thread for rumour-mongering. My bad.

      • Salty Buggah says:

        Heh, you could have somehow connected it to the topic like explaining your stance on Arroyo and then adding what you would want as Sox might get Halladay for ______. It usually works

        Anyway, I dont think that package is enough. The Jays need more pieces and Clay is unproven (besides the no-hittah!). You have to add like a Bard in there and then ANOTHER prospect for the premium IMO.

        • JGS says:

          unproven? but he’s the best pitcher who ever lived!!

        • Andy in Sunny Daytona says:

          The Red Sox (and Gammons)have been BRILLIANT at making the MSM believe that Buchholz is the next great generational pitcher.
          If you say something long enough, whether it’s the truth or not, people will believe it.
          I don’t know if Buchholz will be any good or not, but he should not be the centerpiece of any blockbuster at this point.

    • Mikebk says:

      i will say what i have continually said. Bucholz hasnt proven enough to be the centerpiece of a deal for Roy in the division. You dont hand the best pitcher to another team in the division for a year and a half without getting back someone proven. IF he wants Joba or Phil from us he should be demanding Lester not the laptop man.

      • ShuutoHeat says:

        Sux are eager to ship Buckholez away, because the more you see of him the less you’ll like.

      • Reggie C. says:

        Its puzzling the Jays are asking for BOTH Joba and Hughes, yet the RS are clearly putting forth a package with ONE centerpiece (Buchholz). I do think Buchholz is a quality arm to front line the package, but the Bowden & Westmoreland supplementary pieces are GARBAGE.

        That package currently constituted shouldn’t get it done. Theo has likely got to suffer the losses of D.Bard (a reliever + J. Tazawa.

        I mean really… didn’t JP Rich say he wanted to exact a higher price on AL east bidders???

        • Mikebk says:

          and that 1 “centerpiece” is not to the level of either Joba or Hughes alone, which is why i would demand Lester even lester and Clay if Toronto is sold on him if they wanted both Joba and Hughes.

  8. Tampa Yankee says:

    I think the best move would be to get another bullpen arm if anything. Add the return (hopefully) of Marte and the Yanks would be able to transition Hughes back into the rotation.

    Adding Arroyo would be jut plain batshit insane (copyrighted TSJC 2009, all right reserved).

    I just hope the FO make a stupid move in response to something the Sox might do like getting Halladay since it’s reported they are now including Buchholz in trade talks (http://sports.yahoo.com/mlb/ne.....;type=lgns). Because even if they do go out an get Doc, despite the nice 1-2-3 of Doc, Beckett and Lester, they are still trotting Brad Penny and John Smoltz in the 4th and 5th spots of their rotation.

    • Mikebk says:

      as much as i would like that phil is not going to the rotation this year as has been said by girardi this week. Ace would be the one who gets transitioned forward and we would have Bruney and Hughes from the right side while Coke and Marte are there from the left as the Mo bridge, while D-Rob works in more of a mop up/larger run separation games.

  9. A.D. says:

    Bronson Arroyo is a poor mans version of the worst contract out there, Vernon Wells.

  10. Eric says:

    Just supports my theory that if you always do the opposite of what Mike Francesca wants, you’ll always be a really good GM.

  11. Joseph Kelmanovich says:

    Has anyone else read this:

    “1:57pm: Yahoo’s Gordon Edes reports that the Red Sox offered Clay Buchholz, Michael Bowden and Ryan Westmoreland to the Blue Jays for Halladay. In my opinion, that is a very strong offer. Edes says the Jays would like to acquire a shortstop since they are “vigorously shopping” Marco Scutaro. That means the Sox might need to get creative.”

    If Halladay goes to Boston I’d be scared.

  12. I remember a rumor that the Dodgers were also considering Brandon Bronson. I’d love to see him go pair up with Torre.

    Just because I want to read this headline in the Los Angeles Times when he shits the bed in a playoff-clinching loss to the Phillies:

    “Arroyo implodes; fans riot, throw his carcass in an arroyo”

  13. Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

    This from some guy calling himself Beaver on lohud:

    “The Blue Jays have basically hung up on the Phillies and are having serious talks with the Red Sox involving thes players: Scutaro/Halladay/Overbay for Lowrie/Bucholtz/Bowden/Bard/Anderson and some other minor prospects. How do I know? I am in Toronto and have some very serious connections.”

    Just leave it to Beaver.


    • “How do I know? I am in Toronto and have some very serious connections.”

      Keith Law, is that you?

    • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

      Also from Beaver after some people refuted the trade rumor:

      “Sorry — but that is what I am told by my source with the Blue Jays.

      I think Overbay is being pushed by the Blue Jays as salary relief. He would be an upgrade over LaRoche. The Jays want Lind to play everyday at first now.

      The hold up is Bard. Jeff Blair from the Globe and Mail just tweeted, “No Bard, no deal”.

      This isn’t fake, things are moving very fast and it is a serious discussion.

      I don’t know who is for who, but those are the names being discussed. I know for sure (110%) that Overbay/Scutaro/Halladay are being discussed with the Red Sox. If they trade them (or even just one) it remains to be seen. I have an idea of the return, but not 100% sure but I know the Blue Jays are after Bard, Lowrie, Bucholtz, Anderson among others.”

      Once again, thoughts?

      • K.B.D. says:

        That’s their entire farm, save Hagadone and Westmoreland. I don’t buy it.

        • Salty Buggah says:

          For those 3, it’s not even close to being enough. MAYBE for Halladay (Clay and Lowrie haven’t shown me anything yet, Bard is a reliever, Anderson’s star has fallen a bit, as has Bowden’s if you include him). There’s no way the Jays do that unless they get Kelly/Tazawa and 2-3 other prospects.

          • K.B.D. says:

            I’m not saying it’s enough, I’m just saying I don’t know if Boston would do that deal, even if it favored them in the short term.

            Lowrie could probably contribute comparably to Scutaro, at a fraction of the cost. Scutaro is having a career season and I don’t think that’s beyond the Sox’s realm of knowledge. Overbay is better than LaRoche, but not enough to justify paying the premium for him.

            I just don’t think it makes a whole lot of sense.

      • Reggie C. says:

        No way does Theo part with those 5 guys on July 31st. That’d leave their farm with Tazawa and C. Kelly, and then a massive drop off in terms of talent. Not gonna happen.

        That’s why I think the talk re: Cliff Lee & V-Mart megatrade with the RS is hogwash BS. Theo isn’t gonna part with one-half of his team’s top 10 prospects.

    • Tampa Yankee says:

      I’d have mixed emotions if trade were to happen.

      I’d love it because the Sox would have just traded their farm for Halladay for a year and a half (he wants to test free agency and I think he’ll go back to Toronto), a half a year of Scutaro (unless they resign him after this year) and an overpaid left-handed 1B (don’t they have a few of those already?).

      On the other hand, the Jays would be getting some decent prospects, that IF they reach where they are projected to reach, they would have a nice young core of players (added to Lind, Romero, Hill, etc.)

  14. gxpanos says:

    I dont know who Jeff Fletcher is, but man, the trade deadline really brings out the worst in the media. Sure he upped his page views, but Yankee fans will always be like, “isnt that the dude who said Cashman was after Arroyo…?”

    I know I’ll never read him now.

  15. Rob S. says:

    Keep in mind that Joba will be shut down at some point. After that Sergio Mitre would be our number four starter when he barely passes as a number five. One way or another we need another starter. It doesn’t need to be Roy Halladay or Cliff Lee, just a proven major league starter who can eat innings and keep us in games. If it means giving up prospects or adding payroll it needs to be done. My guess is Cashman will pull off something before the deadline, he always seems to. We could also get a reliver and stretch out Acevas.

    • Come on, big Duchsherer, big Duchsherer, no whammies, big Duchsherer, no whammies, and… STOP!

      • Joey H says:

        Would you really want the Yankees to acquire him? I’m not shooting it down but I just want to hear an educated fan’s logic behind this. Please explain.

        • Best low-cost-to-potential-upside ratio.

          All other options are either crappy (Arroyo, Byrd, Davis, Garland) or too expensive (Halladay, Lee, Bedard, Washburn)

          • Joey H says:

            But he pitched 141 innings and blew out his arm. So I guess you are on the upside/rental best case scenario notion. Washburn is my guy. I’ve lobbied or Lobby(as NOMAR Minaya would say) for him to be in pinstripes since August last year.

            • Reggie C. says:


              The price for Washburn is more than just Melky however. It’d likely cost us McAllister, and lets not forget that Washburn then hits FA when our triumphant post-season ends.

              • Joey H says:

                You wouldn’t part with McAllister for Wash? I’d do it in a hear beat. It’s not like costing Joba for Doc. CC/AJ/Wash/Joba/Pettitte. I love it. I love Doc in Washburn’s place much more but I wasn’t raised to be greedy :)

                • K.B.D. says:

                  I’d rather take my chances with Duchsherer than Washburn. Wash has gotten the benefit of an epic outfield defense. I think McAllister is too much for a guy who is riding a good bit of luck this season and making as much as he is.

              • Yup. If we could get Washburn for less than McAllister, I’d be all for it. But Seattle wants a legit good prospect for him, they’re not going to give him away like Oakland will give away Duke.

                • Joey H says:

                  But Tommie. As much as I like the low risk high reward situation it’s important to get a sure shot guy like a Washburn. ESPECIALLY if the Red Sux get Doc.

                • Anthony says:

                  But is Washburn a sure shot? As noted in the past week, he’s helped out by his awesome defense. Going from Seattle’s defense to New York’s (along with YS3) might not make Washburn worth what we give up.

                • Joey H says:

                  More of a sure shot than Ducherer(sp). He’s a good lefty.

                • 2009 Mariners team UZR: +35.9
                  2009 Yankees team UZR: -15.1

                  The Jarrod Washburn you see is not the Jarrod Washburn we’d be getting. No, I wouldn’t give up Z-Mac for him, and no, the Sox getting Halladay (which they won’t) won’t sway me to change course.

                  Washburn is not worth McAllister.

                • Reggie C. says:


                  What do you think of the purported rumourings that Seattle would be open to moving Brandon Morrow as well.

                  Would you want to acquire both Washburn and Morrow?

                • K.B.D. says:

                  I don’t think the Yankees HAVE to do anything if the Red Sox get Halladay. I think forcing yourself to respond to a Red Sox move is bad business. The Red Sox getting Halladay isn’t going to knock the Yankees out of the playoffs or anything of the sort.

                  You’re better off objectively looking at yourself and where you can improve and making the right deal should one come along. You’re not going to be helped by letting other influences cloud your decision making process, especially ones that don’t have a real effect on you.

                • Joey H says:

                  Fair enough. We’ll see what happens.

                • Joey H says:

                  “The Red Sox getting Halladay isn’t going to knock the Yankees out of the playoffs or anything of the sort.”
                  Need I remind you that Doc owns the Yankees.

                • If it’s Washburn AND Morrow, then the price moves from McAllister to higher stuff (like AJax or Hughes).

                  I’m not Joey, but I’m even less interested in Washburn + Morrow than I am in Washburn straight up.

                • K.B.D. says:

                  Once you’re in the playoffs, anything can happen. Need I remind you regular season performance doesn’t necessarily indicate post-season performance (see: Yankees vs. Indians, 2007).

                • Kiersten says:

                  “Need I remind you that Doc owns the Yankees.”

                  They very most times they would see Doc this year is 3. I highly doubt that 3 games ruin the Yanks’ chance of getting to the postseason. Granted, those 3 games can be the difference between the ALE and the WC, but as we know, it really doesn’t make a difference.
                  And I’m about 110% sure the Yankees won the last time Doc pitched against them.

                • Reggie C. says:

                  Damn TSJC. I say stick Morrow in the ‘pen where he throws 97. That’d free up Hughes to take over Joba’s starting role a short while from now.

                  You then let Washburn walk at the end of the season and make Morrow start.

                • Joey H says:

                  I haven’t heard anything with Morrow though.

                • But again, Reggie, having them throw in Morrow means we have to INCREASE the level of prospects we give them.


                • K.B.D. says:

                  Brandon Morrow Career MLB Stats:
                  4.66 FIP (5.66 this year)
                  5.95 BB/9
                  1.51 WHIP

                  Color me unimpressed.

                • Reggie C. says:

                  Kbd. Yeah, Morrow has delivered on last year’s promise. HOwever, the way Hughes has pitched in relief is pretty much how Morrow pitched last season.

                  Morrow’s arm > than what McAllister and Nova offer.

                • Mike Pop says:

                  I’d love Morrow’s arm man. Obviously I wouldn’t like to give up more prospects though.

          • Anthony says:

            I wonder if Cash could wait to see if his rehab goes well, he DID just go on it.. He’s on the 60-day DL which means that he isn’t on the 40-man roster, ergo he could be a PTBNL in a deal past the deadline, correct?

            Though would it be worth it to wait while we get a better sense of what the Yanks would be getting back (at the risk of driving up his value) or trade something low level now and roll the dice?

      • jsbrendog says:


        ::whammy wearing goggles and red baron hat flying bi-plane crashes into your podium::

    • Double-J says:

      Keep in mind that Joba will be shut down at some point.

      Wasn’t there an audio clip from Cashman last week linked here on RAB regarding this, and he said Joba would be managed so he wouldn’t be shut down?

  16. What would have been worse. The Mets trading Ryan Church for Jeff Francoeur or trading absolutely anything for Bronson Arroyo? I would vote for Arroyo.

  17. [...] Should Stay Away From Arroyo 2009 July 28 by Joseph Jaccom Joseph Pawlikowski of Riveraveblues.com, argues against the possibility of the Yankees trading for Bronson Arroyo. He says that Arroyo has [...]

  18. Joey H says:

    Imagine CMW didn’t pitch like a douche-wrangler? Oh my the lead would be 7.5 not 2.5.

  19. gxpanos says:

    Thank Mo for no Arroyo.

    Say it with me now:








    • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

      The jokes are so obvious.

      • gxpanos says:

        Really, didnt mean for it to be a joke.

        You know, just a regular ol’ internet cheer.

        I assume you mean the cheer sounds like someone squeezing out a dookie? Strictly inadvertent.

        Although, that is kind of funny.

  20. Tony says:

    I literally cannot believe that people didn’t learn anything about counting on pitchers to come right back from injury after seeing Wang this year (and in the past). Dushscherer would be a fantastic addition as a swingman/5th starter with sufficient backup in the system. NYY doesn’t have that luxury at this point. He can be A guy, not THE guy.

    • K.B.D. says:

      Wouldn’t he be coming in to be just a guy? He wouldn’t be brought in to head the rotation. He’d be 4/5 with Mitre.

      • Tony says:

        4/5 is more than just a guy, in my opinion. But “just a guy,” I’m talking about someone you’d be completely okay with not even pitching this season. That’s how he needs to be viewed at this point. The guy suffered a major injury in 2007, missed almost a full season, came back for 2 months, suffered another major injury, and has missed 9-10 months with 0 MLB innings since then.

    • NYY doesn’t have that luxury at this point. He can be A guy, not THE guy.

      Actually, we kinda do have that luxury. We have CC, AJ, Pettitte, and Joba + Mitre + Ace and Hughes in the bullpen. Even when Joba moves to the pen sometime in September, if we add Duke, we’d have Duke/Mitre/Ace/Hughes to audition for the 4th starter spot. That’s plenty, one of those four guys will probably be fine (and with Joba/Coke/Bruney/Marte + the losers of the Duke/Mitre/Ace/Hughes starter derby in the pen, we’d still have a dominant Bridge to Mowhere.)

      We don’t really need Duke to be good instantly, just good a month from now or so.

      • Tony says:


        1. Sergio Mitre is horrible.

        2. Hughes isn’t going to the rotation this year.

        3. Aceves as a starter is a big question mark right now considering what he did in his start and what he’s done since then.

        So what’s you’re really talking about are holes at 4 AND 5 if Joba is out. I have concerns about using a complete wild card like Duke in that situation.

        • Chris says:

          1. Sergio Mitre is horrible.

          Not really. He’s just been unlucky in his two starts so far.

          2. Hughes isn’t going to the rotation this year.

          This is not a guarantee at this point.

        • K.B.D. says:

          “1. Sergio Mitre is horrible.”

          2.68 FIP, 5+ ERA.
          .404 BABIP.
          4.17 GB/FB.
          5.00 K/BB.

          What more do you want from him? Sure, it’s two starts and he’s not as good as his peripherals might lead you to believe, but he’s hardly horrible, especially for a 4 or 5.

          • Tony says:

            He has a 5.91 ERA, and has been smacked around. His BABIP is high because people are slamming his pitches, yes, even the groundballs. He has shown me nothing to think he’s going to improve from here out.

            • jsbrendog says:

              he is a groundball pitcher, doing similar to arroyo but already in the al.

              if arroyo comes to the al you will see

              mitre> arroyo

              • Tony says:

                FIP is such a horrible statistic. I never want to see it again.

                Mitre is a piece of crap that isn’t even trusted to throw 80 pitches. Joe Girardi has some kind of psychological disorder re: bullpen management, but he knows what it looks like when a pitcher is barely hanging on.

                Arroyo is a piece of crap that throws 200 innings.

                • Mike Pop says:

                  Arroyo is a piece of crap that throws 200 innings.

                  sidney ponson like innings. For over 10 million. I’ll take a cheap option or many cheap options to give me Arroyo like numbers.

                  He’s crap. Crap, crap, crap.

                • K.B.D. says:

                  7/21: Sergio Mitre throws 91 pitches. But I guess he can’t be trusted to throw 80.

                  Get used to seeing FIP, because guess what? It’s a useful analytical tool. Just because it doesn’t jive with what you’d like to believe about players performance doesn’t make it “horrible”.

                  If it’s horrible, then you think K/9, BB/9 and HR/9 are horrible, which is a pretty bold statement.

                • Tony says:

                  K/9, BB/9 and HR/9 are useful tools. FIP, ESPECIALLY based on two starts, and ESPECIALLY for sinkerballers (yes, bad sinkerballers too) is terrible when people try to look at it as a straight comparison to ERA, which is of course what you’re trying to do in your post. Sergio Mitre is nowhere near a 2.80 pitcher and has never looked anything like a 2.80 pitcher in his starts. He’s a sinkerballer that doesn’t walk people, that’s fantastic. He’s also getting his pitches slammed all over the park.

                • K.B.D. says:

                  Did I ever say Sergio Mitre is a 2.80 ERA pitcher? I used it as a direct comparison, as you said, to show he’s not pitching as badly as his pure ERA would suggest.

                  I find it interesting you castigate me for using FIP after two starts, but yet you reference his ERA in the same sample size.

                • I find it interesting you castigate me for using FIP after two starts, but yet you reference his ERA in the same sample size.

                  Exactly. You pooh-pooh all statistical evidence that he’s good for being a small sample, and then use different stats from that same small sample to declare he’s horrible.

                  That’s a double standard.

                • Tony says:

                  If his ERA were out of line with his career numbers, you might have a point. It isn’t.

                • K.B.D. says:

                  Last full year he pitched was 2007 and is the most complete example of his ability to pitch over the course of a season: 4.65 ERA, 3.98 FIP.

            • K.B.D. says:

              Well, he hardly walks people, keeps the ball in the yard, and generates a lot of groundballs while limiting flyballs in Yankee Stadium.

              57.9% LOB is also inflating his ERA. That’s going to go up considerably.

              I think there’s decent evidence to suggest he’s been unlucky.

            • coming back from TJ surgery (AHEAD OF SCHEDULE)
              did not play a game in 2008
              50 game suspension in 2009
              pitching as expected as a #5 spot starter in the AL East
              I’ll cut this motherfucker some slack. but dass juss me

      • And on top of that, since you’d probably be paying MUCH less for the Duke, you can still be on the market and possibly pick up another arm elsewhere (cough Snell cough) in addition to Duchscherer, while if the Yanks go after the other options we’ve discussed they’d probably just get the one arm and be done.

  21. Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster) says:

    New news-Kay sys Yanks are talking with Toronto now. No news on what deal is being pt on the table.

    Don’t you just love trade deadline week? :-)

  22. Jack West Jr. says:

    Waste of words, this post. It’s why we don’t jump at rumors until they move past being just rumors.

    • jsbrendog says:

      but it worked cause you spent your time reading it and then posting on what a waste it was.

      RAB – 1

      Jack West Jr- 0

  23. Mac says:

    Rogers Communications needs to control costs article on Yahoo


    I’m dreaming but I’d like to see Doc bring Rios over here

  24. Tank Foster says:

    Well written piece, but I still say almost any player is a potential good deal; it depends on the price. Depending how desperate Cincy is to clear their palate, they might offer some degree of salary support. Arroyo has been durable, with Pettitte likely gone, Wang a big question mark, and Hughes and Chamberlain under inning restrictions next season, it’s not like he wouldn’t be useful.

    • Mike Pop says:

      No, he’s not useful at all my man. Wouldn’t even be worth it if the trade was for Igawa, cause Igawa isn’t hurting the Yankees team and I believe is owed less money.

      I’d rather have a farmhand come up and put up the same to a little worse stats for that much less money. Arroyo, I want no part of. He is not useful, not useful at all.

      I’d want Cash to call on Jimmy Key before Arroyo.

      • Tank Foster says:

        You honestly think “any” farmhand could come to the Yankees and pitch 180 innings at a 5-6 ERA next season? I doubt it. And I’m pretty sure Arroyo could. Maybe I’m wrong. The league differences aren’t THAT huge…

        • Mike Pop says:

          Ya, but why is a 5-6 ERA good? I’ll take a 7-8 ERA owed 400k rather than 5-6 ERA from Arroyo at so much more money. With either guy, you rely heavily on your offense.

          I’m sure the Yankees have guys who can put up Arroyo like numbers or could find guys like it for that much less money.

          • Tony says:

            “I’ll take a 7-8 ERA owed 400k rather than 5-6 ERA from Arroyo at so much more money.”

            That makes zero sense, and the Yankees have more money coming off the books next year than could possibly be spent with any effeciency. There are no options in FA proving a more reliable source of IP at replacement level than Arroyo.

            • Ed says:

              There are no options in FA proving a more reliable source of IP at replacement level than Arroyo.

              How about the obvious, Pettitte?

          • Tank Foster says:

            Read below…the problem with the 7-8 ERA/400k guy is he’ll never pitch 180 innings. Those kind of pitchers simply can’t get through enough innings per start before hitting pitch limits. Arroyo knows how to pitch, and can pitch 180 innings in the AL East. You got a point that his full salary might be really high, but again, you don’t know what else might be involved in the deal.

            • Mike Pop says:

              Okay, I’ll sign Mark Hendrickson, Adam Eaton, and Livan Hernandez all at 1 million a piece. Let Livan throw 140, and the other two throw 20 innings each. Save the Yanks that much money.

              • Tony says:

                1. Junkballers with negative stuff and/or 9 ERAs in 40 innings are excellent options in place of someone throwing replacement level for 180-200 innings.

                2. You don’t strengthen your opinion with that kind of post.

                3. What the hell do I care if the Yankees are 35 million off this year’s payroll or 30 million off this year’s payroll? Think about that. This isn’t stretching the bounds of the overall budget.

      • Jimmy Key, what’s he, like, 45?

        I could hit him…

    • C Bleak says:

      No to Arroyo, his ERA could skyrocket in the new Yankee stadium. He has given up 22 hrs this year so far. I do not want to see him in the bronx at all. I’m sure there is a better cheaper option out there that could pitch to a 5 ERA.

    • Mikebk says:

      i dont see how any player is potentially good. you said depending on the price well the price is approx 17 mil between now and the end of next year if we decline his option. we dont need to pay 13 mil next year for a pitcher who’s era will be over 5 even if he comes for free in terms of players.

      • Tank Foster says:

        I was suggesting the Reds might throw in salary support. No, Arroyo is not worth paying him $13M per year. I’m not that crazy. I think you guys might be underestimating Arroyo’s effectiveness a little bit. Pitchers do vary from year to year. He has had 2 very good seasons in the past, one in the AL East; I think he’s more than a replacement level pitcher, even though he may not look that good right now.

      • Tank Foster says:

        Mikeb–I meant potentially good *deal*, not potentially “good.” Arroyo might not be good in the sense of “above average” as a pitcher, but he could still be a good deal. If he gave decent performance and durability at a reasonable cost, he’s a good deal. If it were “easy” to get 180 innings out of a minor league farmhand, the Yankees would have them up already. It’s incredibly hard to find pitchers who can complete 180+ innings in the majors. Most guys walk too many guys or are otherwise too ineffective to rack up that many innings.

        • Mikebk says:

          i never said he wouldnt take his lumps and eat innings, but if you at his numbers they have declined each of the last 3 years and his k/9 has dropped to 5.28 which is 2 k’s less than last year. so it is just bad luck or has he lost stuff?

        • Ed says:

          It’s incredibly hard to find pitchers who can complete 180+ innings in the majors. Most guys walk too many guys or are otherwise too ineffective to rack up that many innings.

          Arroyo only racks up that many innings because the Reds are consistently a bad team. If he pitched similarly on the Yankees, he would be getting pulled from games earlier, and probably pulled from the rotation.

  25. Mikebk says:

    I would try to take the flyer on Ian Snell. I am not even arguing to make him the starter this year rather to put him in the pen to take Aceves role and let Ace move into the rotation as he did very successfully late in the year last year. you give snell a chance to win the 5 spot next year if Wang is out depending on what happens with him as far as surgery vs rehab.

    I wish it was Hughes to go to the rotation but that isnt happening so allowing for Ace to be freed up to go is a much better option than the likes of Arroyo.

  26. Mac says:

    Arroyo is a much better second half pitcher (at least he has been in the past).

    He could be a bust in pinstripes, but he will likely cost very little in the way of prospects b\c the Yanks would be picking up some of his salary – not all.

    I’d say he’s probably plan D or lower for Cash. Good to have options

  27. DougFunnie says:

    Jeez, if J.P. gives away Doc for nothing to the Bosux, I’ll be

    livid. You might as well put up the white flag if this happens

    River Avenue crew because we stand no chance against that Tri-pod

    of doom. Unfortunately, if you’re Cashman what do you do? He is in

    an impossible situation cause J.P. appears to have different

    standard for the Yankees when it comes to a fair deal. Personally,

    I find it rather amusing how desperate Theo & Co. are acting near

    the deadline. It’s not like his team is not capable of winning the

    series as presently constituted. It would make a lot of more sense

    for them to pursue V. Martinez or A. Gonzalez.

  28. James says:

    Ian Snell is probably the best way to go, we match up with the pirates, and if he doesn’t work out, it wouldn’t have cost us our future and he will still be here, unlike walking away after the season.

    Washburn is nice, but a sub 3 ERA pitcher is going to cost you prospects that you’re gonna miss…

    • Charlie says:

      i agree, but there’s a few problems with him. The most obvious one is he hasn’t succeeded in the major leagues recently. If he just needs a change of scenery, is he better than mitre? And who’s our #4 starter in the playoffs if Snell is the only move we make? Cause he doesn’t seem like he’d be it.

      • Mikebk says:

        as i said above, it would be Ace cause i would use Snell to fill Ace’s role and let Ace go back to the rotation like he was in last year at the end, very successfully i might add.

  29. DougFunnie says:

    Ya know, I have a bad feeling that Cashman is going to stand pat

    & leave the Bombers VERY vulnerable over this two month stretch

    run. And I feel very uncomfortable just sitting on the sidelines

    & witnessing the competition get significantly better. I mean how

    much time does this team have left in capturing that elusive #27?

    Still, when has chasing other teams decisions led us to the

    winning path? All, I know is I’ll be happier after the deadline

    knowing at least we won’t have to hear Franscesa gloat over how

    magnificent Arroyo would have been.

  30. Tony says:

    I would compare the snowballing anti-Arroyo thing here to the snowballing “Jeter needs a wheelchair” thing that happened this offseason. Chill out, be reasonable, come back. No one is saying Arroyo is good. We’re saying he’s a replacement-level option that will eat a crapton of innings that needs someone to eat a crapton of innings both now and next season. His salary is a virtual non-issue because of the money coming off next year’s payroll.

    • Tony says:

      “…he’s a replacement-level option that will eat a crapton of innings FOR A TEAM that needs someone to eat a crapton of innings both now and next season…”


    • Mike Pop says:

      His salary is a virtual non-issue because of the money coming off next year’s payroll.

      No, this is not how you run a business. Or a baseball team.

      • Zach says:

        Exactly. Why ever negotiate? Why ever go to arbitration or exchange numbers? Jose Molina wants 10m/season? Sure give it to him who cares they have money

        • Mike Pop says:

          Cashman: So, Molina, we want you back but we got Cervelli and he’s not too bad. I don’t want to give you much more than 1 million if you want to be back in pinstripes.

          Molina: But, Brian. You have Matsui’s, Damon’s, Nady’s, and Pettite’s money coming off the books. I think I should get a 2 year 10 million dollar deal.

    • K.B.D. says:

      Are you implying that questioning Derek Jeter’s defensive abilities this offseason was wrong when advanced metrics and a pair a eyes clearly informed us he was below average? The fact that he has performed well this year to date doesn’t mean that criticism was unwarranted.

      And using that to piggyback somehow onto Bronson Arroyo is just wrong. Also, implying that people’s dislike for Arroyo is because they aren’t reasonable or are speaking out of anger (“be reasonable” and “calm down”, respectively) is a cheap tactic to rob peoples comments of veracity.

    • Tony says:

      Logical fallacies are fun. Arroyo’s salary isn’t being negotiated by the Yankees. It is a matter of fact that they have the ability to absorb the excess cost next season and it shouldn’t prevent them from making a one year commitment.

  31. Mike Pop says:

    The headline could not be more appropriate.

  32. ESPN.com’s Rob Neyer agrees with Erik Manning of FanGraphs and Joe Pawlikowski of River Ave. Blues: The Yanks shouldn’t trade for Bronson Arroyo.


    Mad MLBTR shoutout love, son!

    • Neyer’s take:

      …Except for his durability — or his “attendance record,” as someone said on a local public-radio station said last week about another durable athlete — there is nothing to like about Arroyo.

      Especially this season, when he is giving up more home runs than ever, walking more batters than ever, and striking out fewer batters than ever. That is, as you might guess, a terrible combination.

      I can promise you that everyone who works at Fenway Park, from Larry Lucchino and Theo Epstein all the way down to the cats that hunt rats in the wee hours, is praying for the Yankees to acquire Arroyo. Imagine Arroyo in Yankee Stadium and envision the carnage.

      Now, we can argue about Brian Cashman’s level of competence. But even if you believe (I don’t) that he’s incompetent, I simply cannot believe he’s that incompetent.


    • Erik Manning from Fangraph’s take:

      Wait a sec…a team is actually interested in Bronson Arroyo? Really? The Bronson Arroyo of the 5.49 FIP? Arroyo hasn’t been very good since 2006, which also happened to be the season he was sent through the meat grinder. For some reason he was allowed to pitch 240 innings for the non-contending Reds that year, and former GM Wayne Krivsky signed him to a 2-year $25 million extension. He has since been your run of the mill league average innings-eater, but has really hit the wall this season. His strikeouts are down, his walks are up and he’s allowing 1.6 homers per nine. Moving from Cincy to the new Yankee Stadium would likely only exacerbate the case of acute gopheritis. The Yankees are pretty much lock for the playoffs as things stand, there’s no point in them adding Arroyo, even if he modestly rebounds as ZiPS projects him to. (4.66 FIP over the rest of the season.)


  33. Januz says:

    I am totally against Arroyo this guy is pathetic AT BEST (I can only imagine what Boston and the Angels would do to him), and in addition, he would not be needed for the playoffs. I would take Washburn if they do not have mortgage the farm for him. Unless I got Washburn or Halliday (And I would give up Montero in a heartbeat for this guy), I would actually be happy if they stood pat and put their resources into signing Heathcott, Murphy, Cotham, Lyons, Stoneburner, Mitchell, Thompson, Meade & Aplin. All those prospect’s TOTAL COST COMBINED does not equal one year of Bronson Arroyo’s contract. Not to mention the fact that odds are at least one of them will have a more productive career than Arroyo.

  34. Joseph M says:

    Starters like Arroyo grow on trees. A team like the Yankees that can score runs in bunches can carry a guy like Arroyo, the question is why would they want to. Livan Hernandez will be available soon, why not wait. Where’s Sidney Ponson he’d fit in nicely.

    If the Yanks want a guy they can send out every 5th day, this is their man. If they want anything beyond that the team should keep on walking.

  35. Jefe says:

    Arroyo in that ballpark is not good.

  36. toad says:

    Yanks should not go for Arroyo, or any #5.. Assuming they can make the post-season with no changes, they need to be concerned with post-season pitching. That means focusing on the #3 slot, not the #5.

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