Valuing Ubaldo

I had a conversation tonight with a friend about Ubaldo Jimenez’s trade value.  I asked him if he’d trade the 27 year-old pitcher if he was the Rockies and he said no based on his affordable contract.  Jimenez is signed for $2.8 million this year, $4.2 million next year and then has a $5.75 million and $8 million team option for 2013 and 2014.  Obviously that’s a very team friendly deal for any team in the majors.  Then I asked if he’d trade him for a Zack Greinke-like return.  Greinke was traded this past offseason for Alcides Escobar, Lorenzo Cain, Jake Odorizzi, and Jeremy Jeffress.  He said he would.  So, using that framework for a deal, what should the Rockies be looking for if they deal their ace pitcher at the deadline?

We know he's worth a ton...but how much?

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February 2009 – Important Events

This is something new that I’m going to try to do each month. I will give each date and list important events, games and/or something in sports history that have happened on that date. I will do my best to provide at least one thing for each day. If I forget anything feel free to let me know if a comment. Without further ado, here it is: Continue reading

Draft Thoughts for Bryan

First let me say that this won’t interest a whole lot of people, and will only probably intrigue people that are fans of an NFL team drafting in the top 10 or just want to gather as many different thoughts and perspectives on the 2009 NFL Draft as possible. With that out of the way, let’s get down to it.

As many of you know Bryan is a huge Rams fan and because of this he is already looking ahead to the draft for obvious reasons. So he asked me “if the Lions take Andre Smith and you were drafting for the Rams, what would you do?” This was an interesting question, because I believe (and Bryan agrees with me) that the Rams goal for the first round should be to get one of the top 3 offensive tackles in the draft: Andre Smith, Eugene Monroe or Michael Oher. They are all easily top 10 players on my big board. So what I told Bryan is that if I couldn’t trade down to a spot where I thought Monroe or Oher would still be available, then I’d reach for Monroe, but that I’d definitely be trying to trade down to get something extra out of it. He said that in addition to the team’s 2009 first round pick he’d also want a first rounder in the 2010 draft as well, but that he might settle for the team’s 2009 second rounder.

Next Bryan asked me how far I would trade down and who it would be with. This was a harder question to answer than I would have first thought. My answer to the first part of the question was simple: “I’d say we need to stay in the top 10, preferably the top 8, but I think top 10 would be fine.” The second part of the question was much more difficult. I first needed to find a top 10 team that was behind the Rams and had a big enough need for a player to jump up to the second spot because a team currently in front of them would likely take that desired player. After that I then had to figure out who I thought the remaining teams would draft to see if one of the previously mentioned offensive tackles would still be available for the Rams. Continue reading

Another Baseball Trade

05-khalil-greene-studioA second big trade and we’re not even at the Winter Meetings yet.  This offseason could get fun, real quick.  The latest trade sent Shortstop Khalil Greene from the San Diego Padres to the St. Louis Cardinals for two unnamed relief prospects.

This is a salary dump for the Padres who have been looking to unload Greene’s $6.5 million.  They have been looking to revamp their bullpen after last year’s dismal performance.  Greene was coming off a career year in 2007 after hitting .254 with 27 homers and 97 RBIs.  In 2008, however, Greene took a massive plunge when he hit only .213 with 10 homers and 35 RBIs.  That’s quite the drastic drop in production.  I think Greene’s real potential is somewhere in the .250/15/55 range, which is much better than the production the Cardinals got from their shortstop platoon of Brenden Ryan and Cesar Izturis.  (Ryan: .244/0/10; Izturis .263/1/24)  I should also point out that Greene’s career batting average in Petco Park is .225 while he has hit .270 away from home.  It should benefit him to call Busch Stadium home next year.

If Greene can hit .250 again, it’s a good deal for both teams.

I must end this with a quote from from of disappointed Cardinal fan friends when I told him that Khalil Greene was his new starting Shortstop, “Whatever.  I think he’s ugly.”

There you have it folks, at least one Cardinal fan is upset because Khalil Greene is ugly.

Braves Acquire Javy Vazquez

Good afternoon WaBs, hope your Wednesday is going well so far.  I can’t really say the same, I’ve come down with a cold in the last couple days and Finals week is looming.  Now, having said that, the sports world does not stop for Finals, so here we go.

First, good read over at ESPN.com about Coach Fulmer’s last day as Tennessee’s Head Coach.  He seems like a good guy, I wish him the best.

Second, the Braves and the White Sox struck a deal last night to pitchers Javier Vazquez and Boone Logan to the Braves for five prospects, most notably Tyler Flowers and Brent Lillibridge.  As a Braves fan, I’m happy with the deal.  We have a pretty clear need for pitching and Vazquez will provide about 200 above average (albeit not by much) innings for us. Vazquez has always been kind of a career underachiever.  He has great stuff and just can’t seem to put it all together and have that great season we’re all waiting for.  He does average about 200 strikeouts over the course of the season.  It will be interesting to see how the Braves plan on rounding out their rotation.  They apparently have a 5-year offer out to AJ Burnett and I still wouldn’t rule out Jake Peavy.  They didn’t surrender any of the the players who were to be included in that deal, so it may still happen.

I spoke with commenter and Sox fan NickSwagger last night about his thoughts on the trade.  He seemed pretty happy with the deal, mostly because of monster catching prospect Tyler Flowers.  Flowers, who will be 23 in January, has absolutely destroyed pitching the Arizona Fall League this year.  He’s hitting .387 with 12 homers and 23 RBIs in only 20 games.  Granted, that’s only 20 games and the AFL is generally a hitter-friendly league, but those lofty numbers can’t be ignored.  I’m okay with including him in the deal because he’s blocked by another pretty good, young catcher named Brian McCann.

Anyway, I’m going to take a nap.  I ran out of crackers and water so I have no reason to stay awake anymore.

Another Not As Important Trade

Amid all the Matt Holliday trade love, another trade flew under the radar yesterday.  The Florida Marlins traded Josh Willingham and Scott Olsen to the Washington Nationals for some minor leaguers, most notably, second baseman Emiliano Bonifacio.  This trade was just as surprising as the Holliday one, but it didn’t include the star power.

The new Nats players came up with lots of hype and never really showed it in the big leagues.  That’s not to say they have been busts, but they haven’t quite been what was expected.  Olsen also has some attitude issues that he needs to overcome.  I still think the Nats got the better end of this deal since I haven’t really heard of the players that the Marlins got in return.  Bonifacio was the player traded straight up for Jon Rauch last year.

Now, on to a little Atlanta Braves speculation.  I’m sure you’ve all heard the rumors surrounding the Braves and Jake Peavy.  If not, start here, it should catch you up a bit.  I’ve seen where many Braves fans are not in favor of giving up Shortstop Yunel Escobar for the 2007 NL Cy Young Award winner.  I don’t feel that way at all.  Anytime you can get a 27-year-old cornerstone of the franchise, you should do it.  Plus, I’ve never been a fan of Escboar’s.  He just seems very arrogant to me and he’s not really that good.  Not likable.  The rumored deal is Escobar, Gorkys Hernandez, and either Charlie Morton or Jo-Jo Reyes.  I’m not sure why this hasn’t gone through yet from the Braves end.  Reyes sports a 5-13 record with a 5.94 ERA in 34 career games.  A change of scenery may be good for him.  Hernandez is a good player, but we have a few CF prospects so it wouldn’t be a terrible loss for us.  I also think we could add a stop gap Shortstop like Edgar Renteria for a season until Brent Lillibridge can step into his role.

Anyway, that’s my take on the Peavy situation.  If it goes through, I will be thrilled.

Offseason’s First Big Move

I just received a text message during class that said “A’s get Holliday.”  Apparently the story was broken around 1:30 by SI’s John Heyman saying the Colorado Rockies have sent OF Matt Holliday to the Oakland A’s.  The players from the A’s side haven’t been disclosed yet, but Greg Smith is the name I keep thinking.  We’ll see if I’m right.  MLBTraderumors has the latest.

From the A’s standpoint, I don’t really understand this at all.  (ESPN just broke the news along the bottom line of College Football Live.)  They’re not close to contending in the AL West with the Angels and Holliday’s contract is up at the end of the year.  Holliday also has some drastic home/road splits and the A’s ballpark is just about a polar opposite of Coors Field in Denver.

It’s pretty tough to gage the Rockies side without knowing who they got in return.  Holliday was their best player, but he wasn’t going to resign after the season.  The A’s are loaded with prospects after last year’s trade of Dan Haren, so it makes sense that they would be able to land a player of Holliday’s caliber.

A little closer to home now, the St. Louis Cardinals were linked with Holliday over the past week or so.  They balked at the request of Ryan Ludwick, Mitchell Boggs, and Skip Schumaker.  I can’t really figure that out either.  A middle of the order of Pujols, Holliday, Glaus would have been pretty frightening.  Ludwick is a one year wonder in my eyes until he proves me wrong and the other two are role players.  I would have loved to see Holliday in Cardinal red next year.

More on this later, for now I have to get some stuff done for class.

Update:  Word is trickling in that the Rockies got Carlos Gonzalez, Greg Smith, and Huston Street.  This a preliminary report, but if it’s correct, it’s a nice deal for the Rockies.

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