The Mockingbird

Free Kevin Melillo

with 10 comments

32200Kevin Melillo is a year younger (26) than Jose Bautista. He also has “a little pop” in his bat (career slugging percentage of .470 in the minors). He doesn’t hit for much average, but he walks. And he also only hits lefties, with an OPS vs. RHP of .842 and .868 the last two years in AAA, which is the only possible justification for holding on to Bautista, right?

I’m not sure about Melillo’s glove – he used to be criticized for it, but then he lead the Texas league in 2006 in fielding percentage. Which of course is a relatively useless stat, but shows he was improving in some way. Bautista on the other hand was -11 in 267 innings in 2006 (hard to do!!), a putrid -22 (ranked 32 in the league) in 2007, and -4 last year (22nd) using fancy dancy fielding metrics.

Ok, Melillo is kind of crap. A bona fide AAAA talent. But you know what? He’d play for the minimum, and he’s already in the goddamn system. We acquired him last season from Oakland for cash considerations and outrighted him down to AAA in October. But he didn’t even get a spring training invite and we just handed Bautista 2.4 million dollars.

Sure a two million dollar difference isn’t typically enough to get upset over, but on this market, and with a TON of free agents out there who have to be getting nervous, I’d say it’s almost half of a really decent player. A Giambi? Hudson? I dunno. Get creative. As the start of the season approaches and real players start to sign for embarrassing amounts, take solace – at least the Jays shored up the role of backup third baseman who only hits against lefties and is otherwise consistently below league average in every way while one was still available.

Next week: A comprehensive list of relievers who would be willing to be abandoned in the bullpen for less money than Jason Frasor.


Written by halejon

January 21, 2009 at 2:04 pm

Posted in Seriousness

10 Responses

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  1. lol

    What a waste of money for Bautista.


    January 21, 2009 at 4:57 pm

  2. You and I have said the same things over the last couple days, it’s starting to scare me.

    Not nearly as much as the prospect of paying Bautista that kind of money, but scary none the less.

    lloyd the ghostrunner

    January 21, 2009 at 5:42 pm

  3. Did Melillo spend any of that time at third?


    January 21, 2009 at 8:27 pm

  4. Last year he spent a majority of his time in Syracuse at third, then 1B, then 2B. For Oakland he was at 2B.


    January 21, 2009 at 11:35 pm

  5. Oh wait, if you mean his time when he lead Texas in FLD%, then no- it’s a new thing the last couple of years. But at least he hasn’t proved himself brutal yet…


    January 21, 2009 at 11:36 pm

  6. I look forward to the Frasor post.


    January 23, 2009 at 7:35 am

  7. I guess I could go through with it – Or just link to the AAA roster. 🙂


    January 26, 2009 at 2:17 pm

    Love this.

    Anthony Sandler

    May 31, 2011 at 3:57 pm

  9. Haha, so do I, really. I didn’t know I had ever put my feelings about Bautista back in the day so stridently in print. I’m totally willing to take my lumps and admit I was catastrophically wrong as long as he keeps hitting jacks…at least I was in good company. 😉


    May 31, 2011 at 4:52 pm

  10. […] on a lefty-mashing backup, Hale examines why it’s too much to spend and actually comes up with an alternative that would’ve saved the Jays a couple million […]

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