Nov
14

Thoughts following the Jays-Marlins blockbuster

By

Shoulda held out for a no-trade clause, Jose. (Dilip Vishwanat/Getty)

The baseball world still seems to be reeling from the not-yet-completed Marlins-Blue Jays blockbuster. Players still have to take physicals and stuff, so it might be a week or so until this thing is final. Between this and the Dodgers-Red Sox blockbuster, these last four months have featured some insanely massive and historic trades.

1. The Marlins are such an embarrassment to baseball. At least they won the World Series immediately prior to their two other firesales, this time all they had was a publicly funding stadium. Seriously, they received $409M in public funding (on what was apparently false pretense) that will cost the city $2.4 billion (!) to pay off over the next 40 years. The Yankees pulled the same kinda public funding nonsense with their new building, but at least they field a competitive team year after year and generate a ton of revenue for themselves, the league, the city, etc. Could you imagine being a fan of that team right now? The Marlins are frauds and owner Jeff Loria is a crook. I say contract ‘em and sell the stadium for scrap.

2. The Blue Jays, meanwhile, are suddenly pretty good. This trade alone isn’t enough to take them from 73 wins to 90+ wins and a division title — I feel like not enough people are talking about how bad of an idea it is for Jose Reyes to play 81 games a year on turf — but it sure will help. They need some of the guys they lost to injury this year (Jose Bautista and Brandon Morrow, specifically) to stay healthy and for Ricky Romero to #unsuck to really make a run at the AL East crown. Division titles aren’t won in November and December, Yankees fans should know that by now. Toronto always played the Yankees tough though, and this trade is going to make those games even tougher. Sucks.

3. If you were holding out hope that Alex Rodriguez would be traded to the Marlins this winter, you can forget it now. He’s not waiving his no-trade clause to go to that mess no matter how close the team is to his home. Moving him and his contract was a very long shot to start with, and now this latest Marlins firesale takes the most likely suitor out of play. A-Rod‘s here to stay, like it or not.

4. I know it’s coming and yes, of course the Yankees should look into acquiring Giancarlo Stanton. He’s obviously not happy …

… so bring him to New York and make him happy. What should they give up? Frankly I don’t care, give them whatever they want. I mean, could the Yankees really say no to Mason Williams, Slade Heathcott, and Gary Sanchez for Stanton? No way. Stanton is ten months older than Heathcott for cryin’ out loud. He’s 20 months older than Williams and already has 93 career homers to his credit. He’s a franchise player the Yankees should go all out to acquire if he’s truly available, which I doubt he is just yet. The Marlins need someone to sell tickets next year and he’ll be the guy as long as he’s making the league minimum-ish, which he will next year. Come his first arbitration raise next winter — homers pay huge in arbitration, Prince Fielder pulled down $7M his first time through with 114 career homers and no major awards — all bets are off.

Categories : Musings

168 Comments»

  1. Brooklyn Ed says:

    Logan Morrison could also be a Swisher replacement, RF/1B. Heck, the yanks should acquire both Logan and Stanton.

  2. CP says:

    The Yankees pulled the same public funding nonsense with their new building

    What public funding did the Yankees get for the new stadium?

  3. Jamey says:

    You assume Reyes will get hurt. What about his speed?

    Still, this piece reads like a bit like Chicken Little. The Jays were well-below average on offense and pitching last year. Playing the Yankees “tough” was because the Yankees just aren’t very good. The Orioles played the Yankees far tougher and they’re the team to watch next year.

    That said, the AL East might be won in 2013 with 91-92 wins. Three teams had a claim. The Jays are improved. ANd the Sox have an empty $100 million in their wallets.

  4. The Real Eddard says:

    1. Loria is a joke and should be banned from baseball. Selig won’t do anything though because he’s a hack.

    2. They’re the favorites now. With the Yankees going into austerity, core getting older and coming off major injuries(Jeter, Mo), the Jays are now the favorites. Rays don’t spend, Os might regress but have a good young core, and the Sox are currently the Marlins of the AL.

    3. It’s a shame that the one albatross contract that can’t be dumped is the one we have. The combination of these huge contracts for older players and austerity will cripple this club the next few years.

    4. They should put anybody and everybody on the table to get Stanton, including Eduardo Nuney. He could be the next great Yankee power hitter.

  5. Ted Nelson says:

    1. Ignoring the time value of money is not wise. You can’t just compare $ across time periods like that to draw any meaningful results. That’s finance 101.

    You’re also jumping to conclusions. Loria might be making the team worse… but he might actually be making the team better. Payroll and wins are not perfectly correlated, though most Yankees’ fans think they are. The Marlins were a 69 win team with all those guys (granted, one sample and a better manager might have helped). They brought back a lot of cheap talent. They can fill some holes through three agency (whether bigtime or value free agents), trade one of the SS they got, and field a team that wins more than 69 games going forward. Especially if they hit on the top 100 OF prospect and stud LHP prospect they got.

    This is an organization that won 87, 80, and 72 games much cheaper the three seasons before winning only 69 games after their spending spree. I expect more wins in 2013 than 2012.

    2. Reasonable take. The Blue Jays got better, but how much better remains to be seen. They also need Reyes and Johnson to stay healthy and Buerhle, Buck, and Bonifacio to “unsuck.”

    3. True.

    4. It doesn’t matter so much what Stanton wants. He’s still dirt cheap. While people somehow read this trade as the Marlins wanting to suck, I read it as looking for value. They took a step down as SS, but will pay a small fraction as much. Could say the same from Buerhle to Alvarez. They traded one year of their ace (who hasn’t come all the way back from injury yet) for 3 good prospects.
    Point being that I don’t think they’re looking to “rebuild” over the next several years. I think they just figure they can win more than 69 games in a much cheaper manner.

    • Cris Pengiucci says:

      Rational thoughts. I may not always agree with your analysis, but it’s nice to read this type of comment again.

      While I think it sucks that Loria would sell of like this after spending like the Marlins did last offseason, I think most of us kind of expected it, but perhaps not to this extent, based on past experiences. I do agree, however, that it is quite possible the Marlins will win more than 69 games next season with a substantially lower payroll. Loria’s desire to reduce payroll is most likely based on lower than expected attendance, but perhaps he should have spent more wisely to begin with and seen how attendance played out during the first season of the new stadium. He did take the city of Miami for a ride, IMHO.

    • Mr. Sparkle says:

      One might argue that if the Marlins are truly rebuilding, the time is NOW to trade Stanton regardless of his low salary. Why? You could imagine he’s currently at the peak of his value with the Marlins since it’s likely, with nobody around him in the lineup on an awful team, his numbers may take a serious hit, decreasing his value. IF that happens, they get a lot less on the trade market if/when they decide to move him later on down the road.

      Of course, predicting that his numbers may take a hit in a weakened lineup is all speculation. However, trading a lot of established players for a bunch of question marks is speculative as well.

      • Ted Nelson says:

        Yeah, I don’t think that they’re “truly rebuilding” though. I think that they are trying to take a more value-conscious approach. As thenamestsam points out below, by back-loading the deals they made out quite well on signing Reyes and Buerhle.

        I don’t think that there’s any evidence to say hitters do worse individually in worse line-ups.

  6. Bill says:

    They want to win like the yankees were under George.
    All we hear now is about the payroll instead of trying to make the team better.

    We cant even offer Tori Hunter Two years because it will ruined hals big picture.

    • DC says:

      It’s also about taking a chance that Hunter will remain productive in his age 39 season, however, I imagine rational thinking isn’t your strongest point.

  7. Kosmo says:

    The sky over Miami is not that gray. Miami now needs to go out sign a FA SP and find a 1B, Swisher ? :
    Echevarria SS
    Solano 2B
    Stanton RF
    Yelich CF
    Morrison LF
    Brantly C
    Dobbs 3B

    Alvarez
    Nolasco
    Turner
    Eovaldi
    and maybe Fernandez

    Yelich could turn out to be next years Trout or Harper, Brantly is a fine young catcher.
    This could be a very good team by 2014.

    • Yeah, they traded all these dudes so they could spend the money on Swish.

      • Jamey says:

        Way to ignore the larger point. 1B is the easiest position in baseball to fill. That’s why it was so dumb to give Teix and A-Gon the massive contracts.

        • Those contacts were given for what they do at the plate, which was unique, regardless of position.

          My point is that that proposed team looks like shit and I’m glad I’m not a fan of it.

      • Kosmo says:

        What? Swisher on a 4 year deal at 14-15 mil or Adam LaRoche on a 3 year 9-10 mil per. peanuts

        • Are you for real? They’re not doing that. Not a snowballs chance in hell.

          • Ted Nelson says:

            Because you say so?

            • Dude. Usually you’re pretty good, so I’m a bit surprised that you’re taking this position. I’m not even saying that it’s a bad idea. I’m just saying that there is literally no way in hell they unload these kinds of salaries and then turn around and spend a bunch on Swish. Absolutely no chance.

              • Ted Nelson says:

                I disagree. I’m not expecting them to sign Swisher in particular, but I think that it’s a possibility. They made a rational decision that a bunch of irrational fans don’t understand. Check out thenamestsam’s comment below. This was a good business move, and their business is efficiently acquiring the talent to win baseball games. I would argue that they have made their organization better with this move, and that they’ll look to make it better going forward. I don’t know that Swisher is the guy for them, but I can see them signing some free agents.

                • My claim was that they would not sign Nick Swisher. I never said that they wouldn’t sign anyone.

                • Made their organization better? They are now the worst team in baseball and what free agent is going to sign with the team when they know they could be traded months or yrs later.

                  The fans aren’t irrational at all. The front office spent like drunk sailors and over the course of a several months erased every nove they made.

                  • Ted Nelson says:

                    Yeah, they got a solid return. They didn’t get back big name value, but they got good cost controlled talent.

                    A lot of fans are irrational, sure. I never said the FO is well run. I said that this deal should be judged on its own merit. There’s a difference between evaluating this trade and their org as a whole.

                • Bo Knows says:

                  It isn’t irrational, they were 3 games under .500 with half a season left to go when they started gutting the team, and they just finished the job after one year of bad play.

                  It’s utter bullshit, that team doesn’t care about winning. Giving up after half a season, isn’t something someone committed to winning would do. Signing players to deals only to deal them less than a year later isn’t something a winning team does. This is about money, pure and simple. Loria wants to extort and con his way to more money, fans, success, and baseball be damned.

                  Also, Reyes and Johnson by themselves could have netted 2-3 really good prospects individually.

                  One last thing, any free agent that signs with that team is on drugs to sign with that shit run franchise

                  • Ted Nelson says:

                    The key to his making more money is winning baseball games.

                  • Ted Nelson says:

                    “Also, Reyes and Johnson by themselves could have netted 2-3 really good prospects individually.”

                    LOL. They did get 2-3 pieces each, smart guy. Did you actually bother to look at who was traded? The Marlins not only managed to get Escobar, Hechavarria, Alvarez, Marisnick, Nicolino, and DeSclafani (that’s 3 each), but they also managed to get out from under-water on the bad deals of Buehrle and Buck (throwing in $4 mill I think).

            • Preston says:

              Ted, do you really think Swisher or Laroche are going to sign with Miami for more money, both have tens of millions in the bank, and both have lucrative offers from competitive teams. I get that you don’t think this trade was terrible, but it really is, because perception matters. Just like perception mattered when they opened up the shiny new stadium they had to make a splash, they have torn all that down and pissed on it. No impact FA is signing there unless it’s a stop over to rehab their value and try out for other teams. And that team isn’t going to compete in the NL East for a while.

              • Do ppl not understand that the Marlins basically became Pirates

              • Ted Nelson says:

                Yes, I think free agents will still sign with Miami if they offer more money. Not every free agent, but not every free agent was going to sign with them before.

                Of course perception matters. You know what drives perception? Winning. Are the Marlins poorly run? Yes. Was this a bad trade for them? No. Will free agents go there if they’re winning? Yes. Will fans be more likely to come out if they’re winning? Yes. They need to do a lot better job overall, but that all starts with winning baseball games.

                You have your opinion, I have mine.

                • Cuso says:

                  If offers from the Marlin’s and Team X are equal, a potential FA would choose Team X. It’s that simple.

                  Conjecture about what a team might possibly do is vastly outweighed by a FA not knowing whether Miami would choose to cut bait again like they just did.

                  I’m seeing a lot of reference about “rationale.” Let’s use some here. If offers are equal, noone is signing with Miami over Team X.

                  Before retort, remember : “If offers are equal…”

                  • Ted Nelson says:

                    Tell me where anyone said their offer had to be equal to another team.

                    No on is denying that it hurts them. The question is how much. Get with the program here, and don’t just bring in random, irrelevant arguments from left field. It hurts them to be perceived as a poorly run team. How much though? I think it’s marginal.

                    It’s going to vary situation to situation. If a FA has two offers that are the same from Miami and some team in a city he has no interest in going to? He might take Miami. He might even take less to play there. If Miami offers him the best chance to play a meaningful role and build his future value, again, he might go there. If Miami starts to win games, he might go there.

                    Let’s not act like playing for a well-run team that won’t trade them is the only consideration for FAs. There are many.

      • Ted Nelson says:

        What exactly do you think they traded all those guys to do? To suck?

        They traded all these dudes because they were overpaid (or about to be in Johnson’s case). They got back good talent in return. I don’t know how big a splash they’ll make, but they certainly can add some FAs to round out their roster.

        • I do wonder what this does to their ability to attract FAs. I keep going back and forth on it, but I think the effect in the end might be kind of a wash. On the one hand, they’re not going to attract any top FAs (I mean, like, premier guys) for a while. On the other hand, plenty of FAs will take their money if they’re giving it out – it’s not like the guys who got traded aren’t going to get paid. I do think it takes them out of the game for the premier FAs moving forward though, moreso than they were out of that game before. If they had made contract commitments to the guys they did last season and then tried to make it work with them in Marlins uniforms, instead of turning around and blowing it up just a season later, I think eventually premier FAs could have been attracted to playing for a deep-pocketed team in a new stadium in Miami. Now, though, I think it’ll be a long time before any premier FA seriously considers going there.

          Whatever, just thinking out loud here.

          • Ted Nelson says:

            Yeah, I agree. I don’t think just signing premium FAs is a recipe for success, though. If they build up a good team, they might be able to complement it with a premium FA in a few years.

            • Cris Pengiucci says:

              Agree. The difference between a premium FA and just a good win, in terms of wins, may not be that much. However, it can be significant in terms of dollars.

        • “What exactly do you think they traded all those guys to do? To suck?”

          No. They did it to save money. Clearly. It’s not a baseball decision. They did what they did to make their bottom lince more favorable.

          • But was it a “baseball decision” if it was made partly because they figured they sucked this past season with the guys they were paying, so why not unload those contracts and start over and build a good team? If you sit in a room and decide ‘you know what, we’re not going to win for a few years anyway,’ then maybe the smart move is to not pay multi-millions to the guys who aren’t going to win for you, get as much value as you can for them, and start over?

            (Just throwing this out there because I think it’s a valid point – I do agree that this was done because the Marlins ownership group just wants to extract as much money from the organization as possible, other concerns be damned. I think the right answer here would have been for the Marlins to build with their current team (maybe trading a contract here and there), invest in the team and the city, and build a more successful, profitable future.)

          • Ted Nelson says:

            So, like I said you think they did it to get worse or to “suck.”

            The bottom line is not just a function of costs. It’s revenues minus costs. I agree they are trying to help their bottom line, because they can win as many games and make as much revenue while spending less. Because it was a good baseball decision.

            They shed a whole lot of market value or worse talent, and got back a bunch of way below market value talent.

            • No, I’ve already answered that. They did not do it to suck and I never said that that was their goal. It’s just a by-product of their push to save on costs.

              And I understand the idea that they were bad with these guys, so why not be bad and spend less? Makes sense, but you had the feel that they were at least trying to win in the near-future. That they were a bit closer and with some treaking, rather than an overhaul, they could be more competitive. These three guys weren’t really the reason why they were so bad. As a marketing guy, I also have a tendancy to look it from that perspective too. This is an obvious disaster from that standpoint.

              • Ted Nelson says:

                If you are saying that they are saving on costs with no regard for baseball, you are basically saying they are ok with sucking.

                No, you don’t understand my point. I think they will be BETTER without those guys. They have similar talent at far less cost. They can spend some of that saved $ on other players. So, they will be better.

                I believe that fans will get over it when they win. It’s not this trade that has made the Marlins awful marketing wise.

        • They’ll add some players but mostly guys on 2 yrs deals for very little money. And yea there plan is to suck. This is a bottom out move.

    • DERP says:

      I am a little pissed that no one mentioned how crazy it is to suggest that Yelich could be similar to Trout. Yelich probably won’t see the majors this year, let alone become the best player in the game.

      • Bo Knows says:

        No body can expect any one going into the future to do what Trout did; that’s unreasonable….that said, Yelich is really really REALLY good.

  8. Jamey says:

    Yeah, I don’t understand the Marlins hate. Loria is scum but this was smart. He thought they could buy another ring right away. He was wrong now they retrench. I don’t see anything wrong with that approach. It’s the right thing to do and if the Yankees could, they would too.

      • Ted Nelson says:

        I don’t think that they Yankees would do it, but I do think it was a fine move. People are largely ignoring the $ they shed and the talent they got back. I would call this deal a wash, and might even take the Marlins side. The Blue Jays got one year of Johnson (with the option to extend, but that’s tricky since he hasn’t been a true ace in a couple of years) and guys at or above market value, and gave up a lot of talent to do so. If they could attract more FA talent to Toronto, they could have gotten the same talent without having to give up more than a couple of picks. The Marlins got a bit worse as a direct result of this trade, but when you consider the opportunity cost of all the salary they had locked up they might have gotten better for far less $. I don’t think it was a bad trade for the Jays, but I think it was a lot riskier than people are making it out to be.

        • Darren says:

          Did you really just defend this as a fine move?

          What the Red Sox did last year was a fine move (or move).

          With the Marlins’ and Loria’s history this is a joke. An abomination.

          • Cris Pengiucci says:

            Loria’s business approach to baseball may be considered a joke if you believe a team owner should only be in that position to build a strong team with a lasting fan base. I would prefer that MLB share that belief, but it seems they don’t.

            As has been pointed out, Loria looked at this from a different viewpoint; save dollars now, and have the opportunity to get better in the future. I don’t think this will build a loyal fanbase over the long haul. Then again, I’m not a MLB team owner, so I could certainly be wrong.

          • Ted Nelson says:

            What? The Red Sox made a worse trade than the Marlins, but based on their respective histories as teams you will judge those individual trades differently? That makes zero sense. I am not commenting on the organization overall, and actually have said several times that I think they are a terribly run org overall. Look into the players they actually acquired in this deal, because if you don’t think it was a serious baseball move it probably reflects your ignorance as to what they got.

    • Slugger27 says:

      the yankees choose not to.

    • thenamestsam says:

      I see both sides here. On the one hand, I understand why Marlins fans would absolutely despise Loria, and it does look really bad for him to be tearing down the team 1 year after opening a new building.

      That said, I do think he’s brilliant in his own fiendish way. Someone posted last night how much money his team is making every year – gobs of it. On top of that, he worked the system beautifully. Signed these guys to absurdly backloaded deals, took a shot for one year and when it was obvious they came up empty he got prospects for those guys.

      Look at it this way: He paid $10M (Reyes salary last year) and got 4.5 WAR AND a top prospect. That’s just about the greatest return on investment I’ve ever seen in baseball. He paid $6M (Buerhle salary) and got 2.1 WAR and a prospect. Again, fantastic return.

      Really the only downside I see is the much parroted idea that free agents won’t sign there anymore. Frankly, I think that’s utter bullshit. It’s not like Free Agents didn’t know before that Loria would tear down the team at the first sign of trouble. Some guys may hesitate to sign there in the future, or demand a no trade clause, but the reality is that most guys take the highest offer on the table. If the Marlins have the highest offer they’ll get the player more often than not. Simple as that.

      • Ted Nelson says:

        Very good comment. I hadn’t thought of it in exactly that way before.

      • Captain says:

        Didn’t the Marlins offer Pujols the most money? and his principal reason for not signing was their lack of a no trade clause which is something they don’t do. Now that players will see that they have no problem trading someone they just signed to a big deal one year later, I definitely think it’ll be thought about by a FA.

        • thenamestsam says:

          I’m not saying Free Agents won’t consider it, but I think the idea that it will be impossible for them to sign free agents or anything like that is crazy. As you said yourself, they would have had Pujols if they’d put in a no trade clause. As it is they got Reyes, Buerhle and Bell. I can see it costing them a guy every once in a while, but if they consistently have the top bid they’ll get the guy most of the time.

          • dalelama says:

            If the Queen had balls she would be King.

            • Ted Nelson says:

              No. Try to comprehend what thenamestsam is saying.

            • thenamestsam says:

              Yeah, I think you missed my point. All I’m saying is the Marlins have had a rep for doing exactly what they just did for years, and yet last offseason their money was good enough for 3 of the top guys and nearly good enough for one of the top FAs ever. I don’t see how anyone can look at that and conclude that FAs are now going to all reject them even when they have the best offer.

      • Mr. Sparkle says:

        Um…how about the downside that the prospects are busts who will eventually get him nothing in return except a lot of losses and empty seats in his ugly, new stadium? A lot of people are ignoring the fact that while the post-1997 rebuilding plan worked out well for the Marlins, the post-2003 rebuilding plan did not. Prospects, even top prospects, do not always pan out.

  9. “The Marlins are frauds and owner Jeff Loria is a crook. I say contract ‘em and sell the stadium for scrap.”

    Better yet… You’ve got a very well-run team (from a baseball ops stand-point) languishing in a bad stadium (and possible just a bad market) in the same state. Perhaps they’d like a new stadium in a bigger market?

    Not realistic, no way for it to happen, WHATEVER. Make it so. (Just keep those Marlins unis instead of the Rays’ unis. Much more fun.)

  10. Ed says:

    The Yankees pulled the same public funding nonsense with their new building

    Seriously, this crap again? The city of Miami is responsible for 75% of the cost. The Marlins paid their part mostly up front, with an interest free loan from Miami to cover 25% of their portion. Miami took out loans to cover their portion of the cost, and is entirely responsible for paying them back, along with the ridiculous interest rates on it. The Marlins are paying something like 5% of the overall cost.

    The Yankees are paying for the new stadium entirely on their own. The city issued the bonds to raise the money up front, but the Yankees are 100% responsible for paying back the bonds, both principal and interest. The city only paid for the public infrastructure around the stadium – the type of thing cities are supposed to do. Even including the infrastructure improvements costs, the Yankees are paying the vast majority of the costs here.

    The two situations aren’t even remotely close.

  11. JW says:

    I think there’s going to be too much overreaction to this deal. Johnson’s clearly talented, but he’s a one-year rental. Who knows what Buerhle’s really going to be worth in the AL East? As for Reyes, there’s a good shot those oft-injured legs are a ticking time bomb on Toronto turf. Make no mistake, the deal’s going to help Toronto, but some perspective is good, too . . .

  12. Enough! Give Pettitte an offer, tell him next week it’ll be a million less…or just tell him to stay at home. Try to sign Martin and Kuroda, but, don’t keep waiting. Quit offering free agents one year deals. If you can’t keep up with the Tigers, and Red sox don’t try.Trade Cano cause you won’t be able to afford him next year…Thanks Mr Boras for this and A-Rod.(U too Hank). You should bring up the kids you feel have something to offer. Williams, Romine, Sanchez, Joseph,Heathcott(Watching the fall league as good as Gardy), Montgomery, etc. Each team in the east has done this and they caught fire. Machado, Moore, Cirriaco, (look at the ages of Trout and Harper)we wait until they get hurt or trade them without a try. Montero, Jackson, Clippard. If you are serious about the cap, this is what you’ll do next year anyway. Get the kids some experience and do it now. There will be less stress on them in 2013 than a must perform year in 2014. PS: Come on Andy, the month is over, don’t tie Cashmans hands).

  13. Phil says:

    Toronto has Drabeck and Hutchinson coming back for 2014 that may negate Josh Johnson if they lose him after 1 year. Also Toronto has some good pitchers in the minors that should be ready by 2015 and/or 2016,,,

    • Ted Nelson says:

      They had those things without making this trade, though.

    • Gonzo says:

      Yeah, I think you might be right in that thinking. At least in the sense that they get to see how those guys rehab and comeback before trying to sign JJ beyond 2013. Although, I think they are banking on Hutchinson more than Drabek. That’s Drabek’s second TJS.

  14. Reggie C. says:

    Throw in Pineda along with Heathcott, Sanchez, and Williams and the Marlins might mull it over another 120 seconds.

    Stanton is essentially on the LOST island. He’s stuck there a while.

  15. Mr. December says:

    At the end of the day its hard to say how much the Jay’s improved, but they clearly did improve. The O’s are for real and like it or not I expect they will be even better in 2013. They have some nice pieces and if they can add one or two more they will be near the top in wins in the AL East.

    That being said the real question is what are the Yankee’s doing to improve the team. I mean at the end of every season one of the main jobs for the GM and his team is to improve the team. I see the O’s have gotten better and I see that the Jay’s have gotten better, and I have to believe that the Red Sox’s would like to improve as well although the jury is still out on whether or not they actually do improve the team. So what are the Yankee’s going to do to improve? 95 wins is great but as it turns out that didn’t mean jack in the playoff’s and if you really follow the Yanks you should have known they weren’t built for a long playoff run. Its hard to home run your way to a title against October pitching.

    So once again we are sitting here wondering what Brian Cashman is going to do to improve his team? Is he going to trade away valuable prospects who are everyday position players for a questionable pitcher (and yes Pineda was questionable given his second half performance in 2011 and Seattle’s willingness to part with a young, cost controlled pitcher?

    • Ted Nelson says:

      How have the Orioles gotten better? Their record in close games will be really, really difficult to sustain.

      Is it easy to single your way to a title against October pitching? No. It’s not easy to win in October period. Provide a little evidence if you’re going to make a claim.

      I wasn’t a fan of the Pineda trade, but that’s ludicrous.

      • Jim Is Bored says:

        The O’s got a lot better in the 2nd half and were more like a .500 team. The luck was really heavy in the first half.

      • Cuso says:

        I firmly believe Josh Hamilton will sign with Baltimore (I know, I know – it hasn’t happened yet).

        Although I don’t really think much of Lohse, I have a feeling he’s landing there too.

        • Ted Nelson says:

          Even with Hamilton, I think they will get worse in the W column. He’s worth, what? 6 wins? I think luck will make them more than 6 games worse than last season.

    • I am not the droids you're looking for...(I believe that children are our future) says:

      The O’s won 1-run and extra innings games at an historical lay unsustainable rate. Even if they legit improve in a couple places on the roster it is very much more likely than not that they regress next year.

    • CANOlli(New York Ziti) says:

      “I mean at the end of every season one of the main jobs for the GM and his team is to improve the team. ”

      …….you sure?

  16. your mom says:

    The Marlins are the new Astros, but at least they still have some talent. BTW, Stanton = pipe dream.

    • Ted Nelson says:

      If you have some talent you are not the Astros…

      If the Astros are the only example that comes to mind of a fire sale, you might want to look back a little further. Given all the talent they got back and the talent they have coming up through their system, I would not compare the Marlins to the Astros.

    • RetroRob says:

      I’d rather be a fan of the Astros right now. Fans can live off of hope. The Astros have a new owner and smart people running their front office, led by the man very much responsible for the Cardinals farm system and success. If I’m an Astros fan and I see them strip down for a rebuild, I’m okay with it because I see direction. If I’m a Marlins fan, I’m thinking of becoming an Astros fan.

  17. Gonzo says:

    Things change and quickly. A lot of people are looking at this trade and seeing the contracts and assume it’s a huge upgrade, and it might be, but short & long term player values often change annually if not sooner.

    I remember before Jose Reyes cooled off last year, plenty of people on this blog were saying that they would rather have Jose Reyes than Starling Castro over the next 10 years, or something like that. A year later, I’m sure the opposite is probably true. Things change.

  18. bpdelia says:

    Look. I think it isn’t the worst trade in the world but for me you have to get D’arnaud in that deal. The two good prospects they got are low level players who are likely to bust because we know most prospects do. The,Marlins got two CAN’T POSSIBLY MISS guys for Cabrera and they both missed. If not d’arnaud how on earth did they not get arencibia? I understand being wary of Gose. I am too. But you have to get one of those catchers. None of the players they Have up were badly overpaid. I.e. fact they were pretty much all paid right at or a bit below fair market. Horas get ONE of the two young starting cat,hers. The prospects are very good but aside from hechy they are so far off they are still lottery tickets

    • Ted Nelson says:

      “None of the players they Have up were badly overpaid. I.e. fact they were pretty much all paid right at or a bit below fair market.”

      What? Buehrle and Buck are overpaid for their production. Buehrle was worth 2 win in the NL East, and will get 48 million the next three years. When they’re paying him $19 million in 2015 tell me he’s not overpaid. And Johnson is signed for only one year. He might be affordable now, but if his agent is any good he won’t be going forward. Given how few FAs pick Toronto, I’m not even sure what the chances are he’s a Jay going forward.

    • Ted Nelson says:

      Also, Marisnick is in AA and there’s only one level between AA and MLB. Prospects are always risky, but he could be much closer. Prospect riskiness is something every small and mid market team trading away vets has to worry about.

  19. Dave says:

    The Jays didn’t get much better. They got a lot more expensive. If their young players don’t improve, they won’t factor much at all.

    But the less intelligent Yankee fans and media will see the names and run around and whine like spoiled children.

    The Blue Jays got a diminishing injury prone RHP. A diminishing injury prone SS with a terrible contract. A league average innings eater with a bad contract. They went out and bought names. Not necessary good players. All names who already had their peak seasons and are now on the decline.

    All of whom will be paid premium dollar. The SS and innings eater signed for the next three and five years respectively. The RHP for this year. So even if the RHP somehow magically fixes his shoulder for a season and re-discovers his velocity, he’ll require a huge new deal.

    • Cuso says:

      Yankee fans don’t need to be whiners to recognize that the Jays got much better.

      Trying to ridicule the deal by saying it doesn’t make them better is childish. Is Josh Johnson not better than last years #2 pitcher? Is Reyes not better than Escobar? Is Buerhle not better than any #3 they threw last year? Is Bonifacio’s versatility and speed comparable to anything the Jays had last year?

      The Jays are “much” better, if the “much” designation is what you require for your argument. Much.

  20. emac2 says:

    I think it’s a great trade for the Marlins and to judge it before we see the balance of their off season moves is a mistake.

    • Andy Pettitte's Fibula (formerly Manny's BanWagon) says:

      Loria took a relatively talented team that severely underachieved last year and ripped down to the ground after only a few months in the new stadium. If I were a Marlins fan, I would be done with this team.

      I highly doubt Loria did this to clear payroll to rebuild, he got himself a brand new stadium and now has a business with little overhead and he’ll probably sell and make himself a tidy profit.

      This whole this was a scheme to fill his pockets in the same way he’s been doing for years by pocketing revenue sharing and not putting that money back into the team.

      • emac2 says:

        I can’t vouch for his reasons but if I was running the team I would prefer the current team to yesterdays team if I had the same payroll to work with.

  21. emac2 says:

    It might open the door for an arod deal. I could see him owning a piece of the Marlins at some point.

  22. The Real Greg says:

    I think the Orioles will regress back to the mean with their one run extra inning success. The Red Sox have a lot of money but nowhere really to spend it. The Rays, as usual, need some offense. The Yankees age is catching up with them.

    If the Blue Jays stay healthy and get Romero back in form, they might be the favorites.

    Their rotation would be

    Johnson
    Romero
    Buerhle
    Morrow
    and a fifth starter, maybe Villenueva

    • Ted Nelson says:

      “The Yankees age is catching up with them.”

      Ho do you know that? Is it because they won the most games in the AL last season and 22 more than the Jays?

    • Gabharu says:

      While most Rule 5 picks won’t stick with their new organizations, and those that do prabobly won’t have much of an impact, there have been plenty of signings on the free agency front that will make a difference. One of those signings has our own Michael Jong of Marlin Maniac excited about the fact thata0his Florida Marlins took a risk.

  23. dalelama says:

    None of this hyperbole changes the fact we have a rotting, decaying core of way overpaid serial post season choke artists which when combined with our barren farm system projects a bleak future with a WS victory probably 4 to 5 years off at a minimum.

  24. Josh says:

    Miami gets:
    David Phelps
    Eduardo Nunez
    Gary Sanchez
    Slade Heathcott
    Brett Marshall

    Yankees get:
    Giancarlo Stanton

    Is that a fair deal for both sides?

    • RetroRob says:

      I think the main question is why would they move Stanton, or Logan for that fact? They are cheap and talented players. Those are the ones they’re going to keep for now. Reyes is expense. Buerhle is expensive. Johnson has one year left before free agency.

      I suspect they’ll try and lock Stanton in. If he’s smart, he’ll have none of it, which will eventually force a trade, but not this year. Last, if they were to trade him, they could get more MLB-ready players. Our prospects right now our all lower level, further away.

      I’d love Stanton. It’s just not in the cards right now, IMO.

    • DC says:

      Depends what the other 29 or so teams are willing to offer for him.

  25. John says:

    mike you should point out that its not only 81 games on turf … its 90 you forget the 9 they play at tropicana .. lol .. i dont think his legs will hold up.

  26. Phil says:

    keep Phelps!

  27. C.Roy says:

    I find this as another win-the-winter deal. People get so excited about a deal that they crown a team champion regardless of the deal. Mark B is not a game changer, Reyes is an upgrade but with more questions on injury then Yunel did and Josh Johnson is what he is, dominate sometimes but more times then not he’s hurt and/or ineffective. Marlins won the winter and were horrible while the Red Sox won the winter before that and sold off that team in August. I think the Blue Jays will be better and a cotender but let’s not give them a spot just yet.

    • Andy Pettitte's Fibula (formerly Manny's BanWagon) says:

      Agree it’s way to early to engrave their name on the Commissioner’s Trophy but this deal has made them relevant and has put them in the game now with a fighting chance against the Yankees, Rays and Orioles. I think it’s a less risky move than if they signed a Hamilton or Grienke to $150+ million contracts each are going to demand.

      They took on some risk with payroll but nothing they gave away in terms of talent should hurt them in any major way long term.

      • RetroRob says:

        Agreed.

        A team has to know when to make its move, and be willing to spend money. The Blue Jays have some young talented players. They have a lower payroll and Rogers Comms to back them. The AL East is no longer just a Yankee-Red Sox race. They have a shot and they’ve taken their shot.

        Right now I see the Yankees, Rays and Blue Jays all with teams hovering in the upper 80s to low 90s win marks. Obviously more to come, but the Blue Jays are right there now.

  28. JuliusCrixus says:

    The Marlins are plain and simple a business. We in general like to romanticize that teams care more about winning, then creating profit. The marlins do this in a more blatant fashion then any other franchise in sports. Quite frankly it’s understandable why they do. why cater to a fan base that doesn’t care. Miami is home to by far the worst fans in sports.

  29. vicki says:

    there’s no minimum for team payrolls like there is in the nba, and of course no penalty for not meeting a minimum. yet there’s revenue sharing.

    owning a sports franchise is a public trust.

  30. Ro says:

    All I know is that the Yankees and Cashman are eerie quiet right now and that always leads to something good. They didn’t even get involved for Hunter. Something is up, I know it. Maybe Justin Upton or Stanton are being discussed internally. I’d even take it a step further and take Stanton and Nolassco for Sanchez, Williams, Heathcott, Pineda and Nova.

    CC, Pettitte (hopefully) Nolassco, Hughes, Phelps

    The Yankees DO IN FACT have the pieces to make this deal or any deal with the Marlins. They also have De Paula, Campos, Gumbs, Austin, Romine, Phelps, Betances (bullpen), and Banuelos (who should be valuable going into 2014). Whatever it is, the Marlins can take their pick and I’d be fine with any of these (or all) to go. I prefer to hang on to Sanchez out of all of these, however.

  31. Cuso says:

    I find it entertaining that people see Miami dump every high-priced FA they have and automatically assume that mean Stanton can be had.

    Fire Sale doesn’t mean “We’re giving every piece of talent away for free.”

    It means they’re shedding large contracts.

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