The Mockingbird

Blue Jays Blockbuster — Following the Money

with 35 comments

Boy, getting to know the business side of baseball sure takes a lot of the fun out of being a fan. Big trades used to be like opening presents on Christmas day: a consequence-free deluge of sparkly new toys to marvel at and get ready to have fun with. These days the wrapping is barely off the latest backup catcher and I can’t help but run to Cot’s Contracts and figure out exactly what we’re paying for all this.

But that’s what it all comes down to when you’re faced with management that sees the on-the-field product in strict terms of return on short-term investment. It may not be “our money” — but the fact is that if Rogers doesn’t spend it wisely, the lack of immediate on-field results and ensuing attendance increase will cause them to doubt that fielding a premium-quality team is really worth it, and WHAM! We’re back watching another slightly-better-than-average club for the next two decades or so.

The last time Rogers was almost goaded into spending dough on the rotation, the team ended up with a bait-and-switch boondoggle — Wells instead of Lilly and Meche — that sent the Jays back into a rebuilding phase overnight. So how does the latest round of acquisitions rank in terms of bang-for-buck, as compared to the dreaded free-agent market we always hear we are so wise to avoid? Wait…didn’t most of these guys get signed to these exact same contracts on said dreaded free-agent market last year?!?

Exhibit A: Mark Buehrle (3 years, 48 mil = 16 mil/per)

Exactly one offseason ago, the Marlins signed Buehrle to a 4-year pact that averaged out to 14.5 million a season over four years. Back then, pundits chuckled at how much the team was overpaying out of a misguided attempt to buy a winner for the new stadium because while Buehrle is ridiculously durable, he is also just a tick above average at this point in his career (even after his rather astute late-career move to the NL).

Anyway, since the original deal was overly generous AND back-loaded, the Marlins have managed to wiggle off the hook and dump their mistake on us (hey, that’s AA’s signature move!) after paying just 6 mil for one season along with Buehrle’s 4-million signing bonus. Even granting a lower-than average risk of decline in his mid-thirties because he’s a slow-tossing lefty, 16 million a season is way, way, too much to pay for a guy who is a minor upgrade on Henderson Alvarez, ten years older, and on the wrong side of his career slope. That’s ok though, I’m sure we’ll be compensated for doing the Marlins such a big favour later in the trade…

Exhibit B: Jose Reyes (6 years, 114 million = 19 mil/per OR the almost certain option of 5 years, 99 million, or 19.8 mil/year)

Have the Blue Jays ever traded for such a major contract? At almost 20 million dollars a year in salary (unless you think Reyes is going to be worth paying 22 million dollars at age 36) this is the big-name investment in the team everyone has been waiting for. And again, the Jays take on a slightly worse version of the deal that was widely reviled when the Marlins gave it to Reyes last season, when he was coming off a crazy contract year that to nobody’s surprise he in no way lived up to, regressing instead to his gradually-declining career numbers.

Reyes is an upgrade, but not a lineup-changing one that it makes sense to throw top dollar at. His glove drifted from not good to really bad last season, and other than 40 steals, Escobar had better production in 2009/2011. As well, turning 30 is a very scary time for speedy middle infielders. If people are going to scoff at the idea of Prince Fielder’s body holding up until he’s 36, I’ve got binders full of dynamic middle infielders wearing down in a hurry in their early 30’s. Imagine having made a major five-year investment in Jimmy Rollins at 30. Or Roberto Alomar at…errrr…33. “Young player” tools do not decline gracefully, and Reyes is on his way down what could be a very slippery slope.

Not that the team doesn’t get a lot more palatable. Reyes is a legit leadoff man who will be fun to watch when he’s healthy (triple=most exciting play in baseball), and Escobar was a lazy, underperforming, dickwad. But if coming into this offseason, AA had announced that Reyes had somehow become available and that he was planning on offering him a five-year, 100-million-dollar contract in order to beef up the offence, it would have been deemed an incredible waste of money at what clearly should not be the Jays’ #1 priority (especially when it leaves us with a backup player staring at second). But frame it as a trade, and wooooooooo! We rooked those guys by getting something for nothing!!! Unless you believe/it is true that free agents just won’t sign in Toronto of their own free will under any conditions, it just doesn’t make sense to get excited about trading quality prospects for players that the team could have been right there bidding on the previous season at a better price/year with no players given up in return.

So that’s two parts of this deal that sees the Jays taking on the Marlins’ mistakes and paying more than market value for these players, which means we’re going to get it alllll back in the super-sweet third part of the deal in exchange for all the prospects we threw into the deal, right?

Exhibit C: Josh Johnson (1 year = 13.75 Million/per) 

Crap. Not so much. Johnson is the top of the rotation arm that the Jays actually need, and the one that they were willing to take on the other two bloated contracts for. His deal is also the only one of the bunch worth giving something up for, as it would almost certainly take more than 13.75 million to replace Josh Johnson on the free agent market next year. But not that much more.

Anibal Sanchez is essentially the same age and quality of pitcher (heck, he had a slightly better year than Johnson and his velocity isn’t down post-surgery — see my pitch f/x post on Johnson coming soon), and he’s asking for 15 million for six years, or 1.25 million more per season over five additional years. That means for the right to pay a similar pitcher in his prime 1.25 million dollars less, and to have him under contract for just one year instead of six, the Blue Jays took on two contracts that were bad when they were freely available last year and have since gotten worse, and gave up Alvarez, Hechavarria, Marisnick and Nicolino. How exactly is this better than blundering around in free agency again?

Exhibit D: John Buck (1 Year, 6 million)

It seems petty to mention it when there are 100-million dollar contracts flying around, but this is another part of this “trade” that is less of a “trade” and more of a “we’ll save you some money”. Since he left Toronto, Buck has completely fallen off the rails and doesn’t even have the defensive prowess of Mathis to compensate for hitting around the Mendoza line. So the Jays take on four million dollars for a clear downgrade at catcher, which is widely reported thusly: “also acquired in the deal is catcher  John Buck, who hit .281 with 20 HR during his last stint with the Jays”…

I don’t mean to be a total grinch. This will make for much better baseball in Toronto next season. But this trade is being over-celebrated because the media looks at it like fantasy baseball, our guys for their guys — in which case it’s highway robbery. The truth is, under baseball’s current economic system, the only time a team ‘wins’ this kind of payroll dumping transaction is when in exchange for prospects they get players on the cheap, which is clearly not the case here. While it looks terrible for the Marlins in terms of talent lost and the direction of the franchise, these were such bad contracts when signed that it is isn’t a huge haul of talent for the roughly 50 million bucks a season the Jays are absorbing, either. Considering that the two top pitchers out there are asking for 15 and 25 million dollars a season respectively and it’s hard to imagine having to spend more than 30 million on the rotation, anyway, without the need to pay Reyes like a superstar and give up some good young players.

If all this happened because Rogers is opening the floodgates and finally making a big, sustained push for the playoffs and the hearts of fans, then great. For rather a lot of money and prospect value the team has managed to improve at a very thin position, leaving room for even more investment in left field. But if this was Anthopoulos’ one chance to get big results from the long-awaited cash infusion, then he didn’t get the value that he needed in order to make the making the postseason next season more than a faint hope — which could mean this round of rebuilding the Blue Jays just jumped the shark.

Written by halejon

November 15, 2012 at 10:37 pm

35 Responses

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  1. My erection has lasted longer then four hours – you’re saying I should consult a physician?

    mulliniks

    November 16, 2012 at 12:15 am

  2. 2 years of JJ? thought it was only one.

    aaron

    November 16, 2012 at 1:09 am

    • Yikes, you’re right. I think that makes the complaint stronger, although boy is my face red. I wish it were two since clearly I think he’s the prize of the deal.

      halejon

      November 16, 2012 at 4:03 am

  3. The free agent class is razor-thin on hitters. If Reyes was on the market, he’d probably get a deal similar to what he has now. Maybe not all of it, but most of it.

    Jimmy James

    November 16, 2012 at 1:19 am

  4. The backend of Reyes and Buehrle’s contracts are ridiculously inflated, but AA is probably banking on a lot of the Jays top prospects will be on the big club by then, thus adding a lot of value for little money. Sure – Reyes and Buehrie’s will be clogging up a shitload of salary and may be the black eyes of the team for a couple years, but if the prospects develop into good major leaguers (and Reyes and Buehrie’s don’t deflate as quickly and badly as Wells did) the Jays may still have a reasonable amount of salary room to stay competitive for more than just the next year or two.

    Don’t get me wrong, this is a ballsy move by AA that could go horribly wrong. But I think it’s a risk worth taking on condition that AA dives in with both feet this winter and adds another starter – and if we’re really lucky, a left fielder.

    Jonathan Johanson

    November 16, 2012 at 1:19 am

    • That makes sense, and counting on the young arms coming along fast is actually a solid reason for wanting Johnson’s contract to expire and Buehrle’s crafty veteran presence to be around for a few years longer. I feel like an albatross is still an albatross though — if the team can compensate for a couple of years of a couple of questionable deals by having some very cost-effective young players, that just means they were missing out on an even greater opportunity to be smart and get more.

      Agree about the need to dive in with both feet — it just wouldn’t make sense to upgrade SS so massively yet start Rajai Davis in LF. The starting rotation is getting crowded…any acquisition will probably be a longshot to compete for the last spot in the rotation with Happ et al.

      halejon

      November 16, 2012 at 4:34 am

      • Maybe they could have got more for less. We’ll never know. Having a crowded starting rotation is never a bad thing, especially when I believe Jenkins is the Jays sixth man and J.A. Happ has options. Plus, who knows how Ricky’s going to perform this year? Nobody knows. Better to be safe than sorry. Especially when you, me, and everybody is paranoid about injuries. As for left field, sure, the Jays could definitely use an upgrade, but you don’t need an above average or all star at every position to make the play offs, or even win the World Series.

        Jonathan Johanson

        November 16, 2012 at 1:21 pm

      • But a Davis/Bonifacio split in LF would actually be above average.

        It’s best to have 6 starters with one swing. If Happ is the 5th starter, it’s not the end of the world, but he has greater value as the 6th starter coming out of the bullpen. Especially considering there isn’t much in the system after him to eat up innings in the case of injury.

        Buffalo Tim

        November 16, 2012 at 1:28 pm

      • I’m not sure how you come to that unless you’re granting Bonifacio his small-sample-out-of-line-with-career 2012 numbers against RHP in a platoon situation. I feel like a LF bat is one of the easy places to get bang for buck, too. Having a 20-million-dollar SS and a league-marginal platoon in a power position to save a few bucks doesn’t make team-building sense to me.

        I think it was three years ago the first team ever made it through a season with 5 starters? Yeah, the depth is almost just as important when you are absolutely guaranteed to have to use it. Not sure why people mentally check out after 5 starters every year and then get mad at the world when we’re giving away games in July by the second inning throwing some AA kid out there because OMG SOMEONE’S ARM FELL OFF WHO COULD EVER HAVE FORSEEN THIS WHY ARE WE ALWAYS SO UNLUCKY…;)

        halejon

        November 16, 2012 at 3:46 pm

      • Yeah, but it just makes to sense to plug gaping holes if you’re acquiring superstars. Especially with douchebags who buy entire drug companies to try and lie their way out of being caught and alienate their team so much in the process that they don’t even want them to play in the postseason! Hahahahahahaha….

        halejon

        November 16, 2012 at 4:50 pm

  5. How do you change the face of your franchise with one move, and ‘get it right’? I don’t think that trade is possible to see except in hindsight.

    coolhead2011

    November 16, 2012 at 1:26 am

  6. “How exactly is this better than blundering around in free agency again?”

    Because Brandon League got 3 years and $22 million in free agency, and he’s a mediocre reliever at this point. If that’s the reference point for this offseason, I can’t even imagine where we’re going with actually good players.

    So even if we commit to the idea of wildly overpaying, are we sure they’re going to take the Jays’ money? If they had signed Greinke, Sanchez, and Josh Hamilton, that’s not assuredly better than this haul, and there’s no way the Blue Jays were getting all those guys.

    We gave up lottery tickets in Nicolino and Marisnick, a SS who can’t hit in Hechavarria, a mediocre starter in Alvarez, and an inconsistent headcase in Escobar. And Jeff Mathis.

    This trade isn’t without risk, but the amount of people who want to take a dump on it is incredible.

    Dave Church

    November 16, 2012 at 1:39 am

    • “This trade isn’t without risk, but the amount of people who want to take a dump on it is incredible.”

      Really? I have not read or heard a single thing that is not wildly in favour of this deal.

      The fact that someone wants to pay Brandon League 7.3 million a season to be mediocre does not make me feel any better about paying Buehrle 16 million a season to be mediocre.

      Even lotto tickets have value, though. My point is less that these are great prospects and more that we shouldn’t have to give up much of anything anything to absorb bad contracts.

      Being a mediocre starter in the bigs at age 22 (with one pitch, no less) is pretty impressive in my books.

      halejon

      November 16, 2012 at 5:01 am

  7. I stopped reading when you said Buerhle is a “minor upgrade” over Henderson Alvarez. I understand you might not like the deal, but that’s one of the most ridiculous things I’ve ever heard.

    Phil Pearson

    November 16, 2012 at 11:31 am

    • It’s a little Hyperbole, but not as much as calling it one of the most ridiculous things you’ve ever read. Here’s my slapdash argument: the difference between the NL and the AL is about half a run of ERA. The difference between Buerhle and Alvarez’s ERA’s last year was about a run. Without getting into their career arcs at all (!!), what do you call half a run per game except a minor upgrade?

      halejon

      November 16, 2012 at 12:42 pm

      • So… now we’re only counting stats from last year?

        Buffalo Tim

        November 16, 2012 at 1:25 pm

    • Is it still one of the most ridiculous things you’ve ever heard, Phil? ;)

      halejon

      September 27, 2014 at 4:39 pm

  8. I think that a big factor is that cart-before-the-horse spending philosophy Rogers has be preaching the past couple of years. They weren’t going to spend until the fans showed up, but the fans weren’t going to show up until the purse strings opened.

    I get that the financials of this trade are messy, but if this puts the Jays attendance figures into the upper echelon of baseball, and their operating budget follows, it makes the salary acquired much more palatable.

    Something had to give. If this manages to bump the Jays’ baseball ops. cash up (and the incoming TV deal helps, too), then I think it starts to make a little bit more sense.

    Miker

    November 16, 2012 at 11:34 am

    • I totally agree..it’s what I try to get at with the closing paragraph. This all like a ridiculous argument when I’ve been arguing that it makes economic sense to just plug the nose and wade onto the free agent market in order to win back attendance and build a long-term fanbase for years now. I just can’t believe that when the money finally came, after years of tinkering and holding absurdly tight, we spewed prospects, absorbed the kind of ‘franchise-killing’ monster deal for a good-but-not-elite player that got us into this mess in the first place, and took on back-loaded contracts signed last year.

      halejon

      November 16, 2012 at 2:05 pm

  9. My only response is.. with the package we gave up.. what would be another reasonable return.. granted we did take on a lot of risk.. but hech could be a darker johnny mac.. and escobar wasnt exactly our prized SS.. Alvarez held his own.. but realistically he NEEDS another offspeed pitch.. which would require more minor league seasoning.. and then our studs Nicolino and Marisnick.. whom i could basically call Drabek and Snider.. the time to pin our teams hopes and dreams on potential as long died.. and Rogers clearly just wants to get the ball rolling attendance wise. Pure baseball perspective.. its a big risk and a lot of cash for some cheap very controllable players… in the grand scheme of things however, this deal makes toronto relevant.. it gives the team the ability to entice major league talent to actually come north and it keeps our star player happy while also instilling a winning atmosphere in a group of otherwise inexperienced players.. but i think most of all.. its going to sell tickets and get fans in the seats.. with attendance rising already.. next year will be a dramatic step in the direction of sustained support

    shevy

    November 16, 2012 at 11:51 am

  10. just to illustrate how much that article is off… jose reyes .351 woba/ yunel escobar .284 woba. same in 2011 for yunel…

    …yeah so uhm… no.

    bakatron

    November 16, 2012 at 11:51 am

    • Try to understand the words you are reading before getting arrogant using cherry-picked SABR stats, ok? What I said about Escobar’s recent track record compared to Reyes holds in that language just fine.

      Jose Reyes 2012 wOBA: .335
      Yunel Escobar’s 2011 wOBA: .348
      Yunel Escobar’s 2009 wOBA: .360

      halejon

      November 16, 2012 at 2:16 pm

  11. It’s easy to say contract X is a bad contract, or trade Y is a bad trade, but try backing it up with a recommendation to what AA should’ve done in place of the money spent. With not a lot of options out there, I do not see us aquiring a SS of Reyes’ capability + two front end starters for what we gave up. Those contracts are what they are, but he fact of the matter is we should be dancing in the streets knowing that we have a top 3rd payroll team, not the opposite. If the Jays stop here, then I will be mildly disappointed, but not as disappoitned as if we overpaid for one of the tier 2 FA pitchers, let Alvarez try to figure it out at the MLB level again, and did paid Reyes’ contract for Nick Swisher or BJ Upton. The biggest reason why I’m VERY happy after this deal is we held on to our prized jewel prospects. Jake was behind Colby + Gore. Nicolino was 3rd of the Big 3. And with Reyes Escobar AND Hech mean nothing to us.

    jb21

    November 16, 2012 at 11:59 am

    • So true…especially with the possibility that no free agent wants to Canada/a non-competitive team, it’s impossible to know what’s really available to AA. But that’s why I’m strictly trying to compare to market value (and what was considered extremely generous market value last year). I find it hard to believe that the Jays would have to overpay THAT much more than the Marlins did a year later for similar talent, or much more for a top flight pitcher than what their agent is floating around the league. If Greinke signs for 30 million a season for eight years, forget everything (it’s happened before — Burnett looked like a stupid deal, and he ended up opting out looking for more money because the market went stupider).

      I don’t agree about the dancing in the street because of a 3rd payroll (in the AL East, I assume you mean). You have to be smarter than the Yankees, and you have to have somewhere close to the same payroll that the Yankees have in order to compete with the Yankees. Rogers finally gave AA the latter, and it is NOT time to stop caring about the former — rather the opposite.

      Why does Hech mean nothing to us? He was supposed to be the 2b of the future. I’m also glad that we didn’t lose anyone blue-chip, but that doesn’t mean that these assets were worthless. I’m also glad we didn’t pay 20 mil for Nick Swisher, but that’s like saying I’m glad we didn’t DFA Bautista. That it could have been worse doesn’t mean this was particularly good.

      halejon

      November 16, 2012 at 2:32 pm

      • I meant top 3rd as in Top 10 in the MLB vs. bottom 3rd aka 20-30. All in all I understand the risks, but I think it was a move that had to be made, and HOPEFULLY there’s a couple more bucks to be spent to REALLY go after 2013. The AL East is there for the taking, probably more than in the past 10+ years.

        jb21

        November 16, 2012 at 3:07 pm

      • Right. Duh. I guess I can’t even feel the excitement of the payroll bump because Rogers has been promising it in no uncertain terms for some years now. In fact, they kind of promised it was going to happen last year and then mumbled when the time came. So it’s sorta like a deadbeat dad finally showing up for Christmas, with a bunch of flashy video games for the kids instead of the cheque that I had already mentally spent on things the family actually needs. It’s a bittersweet time, full of uncomfortable metaphors.

        halejon

        November 16, 2012 at 3:54 pm

  12. A lot of good points, but the premise is flawed a bit and so the whole thing skews a bit negative. Comparing these guys to the current crop of free agents as if it’s either/or is just not correct. We know free agency is not like shopping at a grocery store and popping players into your cart. Free agency is a bit more like shopping for some super rare Pez dispensers on ebay, where some sellers just won’t ship to where you are. And even if they will you can get outbid by some crazy dude that has wanted it for years at the last minute. There is value in finding a way around that.

    It is not a perfect trade, and sure we all want something for nothing. No guarantees, but there are some real proven commodities coming to Toronto. And what the Jays gave up has precious little that is proven, and the foundation of what they are giving up is likely the most overvalued commodity in the trade market right now (young pitching).

    Sil Campusano's handler

    November 16, 2012 at 12:51 pm

    • I hear yah. I think if you read between the lines, I’m trying to acknowledge this fact the entire way. I can’t tell you what Reyes’ would cost if we were trying to sign him now, but I can cast doubt on the idea that he has gone up in value at all since the Marlins bought him. I can’t tell you what we could sign Sanchez for this offseason, but I can tell you that he’s only asking for a mil more per season. There is value in avoiding the bidding system and the uncertainty itself — but when the numbers are otherwise close, to me that is dwarfed by the prospects and backloading.

      I don’t want something for nothing, guarantees, etc, etc. Just market value or better. That’s AA’s job. He’s usually very good at it. Anyone can bring some real proven commodities to town with 50 million bucks. All prospects are unproven.

      About young pitching, I would say instead that he gave up the commodity with the highest value on the trade market right now. It is only ‘overvalued’ in the sense that teams are willing to pay a ton because it is typically so hard to acquire (unless you mean because teams tend to overrate young flamethrowers and/or their potential for injury).

      halejon

      November 16, 2012 at 2:58 pm

  13. Great article. I couldn’t have said it better myself. I’ve been expressing this exact opinion over at DJF the last few days and was called a troll. Also, you should know Tao of Steib shares this opinion, and so does the new writer (Martin) at The Southpaw (http://thesouthpawbaseball.blogspot.com/2012/11/now-thats-what-i-call-blockbuster.html ).

    If you would have told me that the Jays were going to invest $160M over the next five years in getting new players, and also give up 3 of their top 10 prospects, plus Yunel plus Alvarez, I would’ve thought you were crazy if this trade was our only return. AA could have stayed the course and gotten better value deals by just using the FA market this winter (as you mentioned), and signed Anibal Sanchez, Shaun Marcum, and then still had money to sign either Melky or trade for Choo, and then probably still had a a bit of money left over after that for either future flexibility or to sign a DH, or to look for upgrades at 2B.
    People don’t realize that our 5-9 hitters are still Rasmus, Lind, JPA, Izturis/Bonifacio and Rajai Davis. That’s about half the lineup being replacement level.

    Kman

    November 16, 2012 at 1:24 pm

    • Thanks! I had not encountered fellow contrarians to this point. It’s frustrating when you’re just trying to make logical sense of what’s going on and get shouted down by the fanboys as if you don’t want see a better product on the field, ain’t it?

      It will be interesting to see how the market plays out, and what other deals the Jays end up making. I just can’t imagine Sanchez/Marcum going for any more than what we paid Buehrle/Johnson, and like the combo just as much.

      Seriously…if I hear “we proved that the lineup wasn’t the problem last year” one more time, I’m going to puke. There are some gaping holes on this team that it wouldn’t take 50 million bucks to patch. There’s just no way that after all this we end up the season with Davis and Lind as starters. Even JPA’s days are probably numbered seeing that we keep making sure we have an extra shitty catcher around.

      halejon

      November 16, 2012 at 3:16 pm

  14. I think you’ve overvalued “lottery tickets” for the Jays. The Jays still have good players in the system, and they needed to win now to get value out of the players they already have on the major league roster. I don’t think this trade was a complete steal, but rather that it gave both teams what they desperately wanted and needed.

    You’re also overvaluing free-agency. We do not know who will sign where for however much money they will get. We do know that the Jays added two quality starting pitchers (with Johnson having the potential to bounce back to stud status, and Buehrle being a consistent LHP who puts up average numbers). For the Jays, it’s better to make this deal than to sit on their hands and hope that they’ll do better later.

    Your comparison of Alvarez to Buehrle is dubious at best, and I’m not bullish on Buehrle. 200 innings at an ERA of 4.00 still has great value on a Jays team that has had a rough go with injuries. It also increases the likelihood of preserving the bullpen so that it can be used properly (whatever that means… maybe it means not overusing arms).

    This trade isn’t about deciding which team won and which team lost. I think they both came out pretty far ahead considering their directions and needs.

    Buffalo Tim

    November 16, 2012 at 1:35 pm

    • “For the Jays, it’s better to make this deal than to sit on their hands and hope that they’ll do better later.”

      That’s your opinion that I disagree with. Rushing in is not always the best policy, and ‘getting what you desperately need’ does not make automatically make trade a good one if you could have gotten it for less. I’m sure you’ve heard the canard that sometimes the best moves are the ones you don’t make. While I am aware of the Jays need to WIN NOW, after surveying the market from last year and where it seems to be going this year, I think that it would be pretty easy to do better in exchange the same cash/prospects.

      I’m not trying to say that Alvarez and Buehrle are the same pitcher, just that it clearly isn’t the sort of upgrade that fans should be happy about spending 16 million bucks a season on. Half a point of ERA, and one pitcher is highly likely to improve over the next few years, while the other is almost certain to decline. To me that’s almost a wash, getting ever so slightly better and more reliable in exchange for 10 years older. 187 innings from a 22-year-old is pretty valuable, too!

      “This trade isn’t about deciding which team won and which team lost.”

      Really? Can’t we try to evaluate if it was a good idea, just for fun? I am rather disappointed to hear that trades are no longer meant for thinking about and discussing.

      halejon

      November 16, 2012 at 3:32 pm

  15. [...] – Keep a hint of rational thinking about everything in your mind somewhere. John Hale makes a great point here that should temper your excitement at least a little. There are also still holes to be filled and [...]

    • If Reyes goes the path of Jimmy Rollins, do the Jays really lose the trade? According to Fangraphs at least, Rollins has continued to provide good value in his 30’s. http://www.fangraphs.com/statss.aspx?playerid=971&position=SS

      I might just ask you to show us that binder (follow-up post please?).

      KingKat

      November 16, 2012 at 4:50 pm

      • I don’t really know what to make of Fangraph values. I get the concept, but I feel there’s something lost in the positional adjustment and what you realistically pay players along the slope of value instead of the way they dice up WAR and turn it into dollars. I mean, apparently Yunel Escobar was worth 19.1 million in 2011 when he hit .290 with 11 bombs…I guess in that market Jimmy Rollins was worth 22.2 mil last year (which on second glance is a lot better than I knew existed when I made that comment).

        I actually started going through b/r’s top 10 most similar players for a post like that, but it was really unsatisfying. Alan Trammell, Ryne Sandberg, and then a bunch of guys from the 1900’s…

        halejon

        November 16, 2012 at 9:47 pm


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