Posts Tagged ‘detroit tigers’

Is Cole Hamels The Prize Of The Deadline?

July 21st, 2015 by Mike H. | Comments Off on Is Cole Hamels The Prize Of The Deadline? | Filed in Baseball, Phillies

Will the Cole Hamels’ next start in Chicago be for or against the Phillies?

Every year, whether it be at the GM Winter Meetings or the Non-Waiver Trade Deadline, there’s always that one big name that holds up the rest of the market. This summer is no different and it very well could be Cole Hamels that has become “that guy“. Sure there are sexier names like David Price and Johnny Cueto available, but ultimately they are bigger overpays. First of all, they are rentals. Outside of the Cubs trading for Price, I highly doubt either pitcher will start 2016 with the team they end 2015 with. Second of all, they would be no doubt about it Qualifying Offer candidates, meaning that if they were to stay with their current team and no sign a one-year tender and sign with another team, the current team would be entitled to draft pick compensation in next year’s draft. That being said, the Reds and Tigers are going to be looking for a package that includes additional compensation for losing that draft pick.

The next tier includes guys like Mike Leake, Ian Kennedy, James Shields, and Jeff Samardzija. None are a bad pitcher, but none are tried and tested aces. In fact, not even Price or Cueto have the playoff pedigree that Hamels has. Do I doubt that many teams look to the second tier guys for depth? Any team in the playoff hunt would be crazy not to. Any of these pitchers could easily be an upgrade over what a team currently has, but are any of them worthy of being that go to guy in a one game playoff? They’d definitely keep you in the game, but probably won’t win it for you like Hamels can.

So let’s be honest, there are probably some sleeper teams out there looking at the long-term that don’t get discussed in the “Hamels Sweepstakes”, but the ones most discussed about are the Cubs, Dodgers, Red Sox, Rangers, and Orioles. Right off the top, I’d cross off the Orioles just based on the fact that they don’t have much to offer in return. Sure teams like the Pirates, Astros, and Blue Jays have kicked the tires on Hamels, but that seems to be just due diligence. I could be dead wrong, but I highly doubt he ends up in any of those uniforms. I’d probably cross off the Dodgers as well. They have two things going against them. One is that they appear to be trying to pull the “I’m gonna low-ball you an offer just because I’m willing to eat all the remaining contract” card. The other is that, in my opinion, no team is going to trade you a top 30 ranked prospect in all of baseball. So that probably means no Seager and no Urias. Which I’m okay with. Both are great and I wouldn’t say no to either one, but I’m excited with what the Phillies have in those positions.

While in the off-season, my main destination was clearly the Red Sox, my in season target has been slowly drifting towards the Chicago Cubs. With Miguel Montero’s recent injury, I don’t know what the availability of Kyle Schwarber would be, but he’d be my center piece around Mark Zagunis and Billy McKinney. The deal may have to expand due to Chicago’s need behind the dish (Carlos Ruiz anyone?) or involve a third team. Either way, the Phillies need to get this one right.

What if the Phillies don’t end up moving Hamels? Well, simply put, they’d have an increasingly hard time moving him before next July 31st to gain a proper value. With Cueto and Price basically guaranteed to be moved, they’d be the prizes of the offseason with guys like Jordan Zimmermann and  Zack Greinke not falling too far behind. Yeah all of those guys, would cost a lot of years and money, but that’s all they would cost. Not a large contract AND prospects to boot. So at best, Hamels would be the 5th most desirable pitcher this winter.

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Deconstructing The Phillies: Outfield

November 30th, 2014 by Mike H. | Comments Off on Deconstructing The Phillies: Outfield | Filed in Baseball, Phillies

Finally, we make our way to the outfield. Where hopes and dreams have gone to die. Ben Revere must be Juan Pierre’s illegitimate child, without the bunting skills. Marlon Byrd had one of the best offensive seasons at a discounted rate, but has very little value due to his age. Then there is Domonic Brown. I had a lot of hope for Brown. Five years ago, Brown was hitting .320 with 20+ home run power. His defense was a little suspect, but the offense more than made up for it. Heck we had dealt with Pat the Bat and Rauuuuuuuuul, so why not one more. Yeah, so his defense didn’t get any better and his offense has gotten significantly worse. If you look at the numbers, 25% of Brown’s CAREER home run total came in May of 2013. 12.5% of his CAREER runs batted in total are also from the same month. Yes, they are glimpses of what could be/have been, but I doubt anyone expects that to happen again in red pinstripes. Let’s put this baby to bed, so that we can have one last look at how this team would be different if I was calling the shots. (more…)

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Deconstructing The Phillies: Relief Pitching

October 16th, 2014 by Mike H. | Comments Off on Deconstructing The Phillies: Relief Pitching | Filed in Baseball, Phillies

In part two of our ongoing series on how to potentially fix the Phillies, we’ll address the bullpen. The bullpen was actually one of the bright spots in 2014. Where Papelbon lacked off the field, he did his best to make up for it on the field, converting 39 of 43 save opportunities. Only rookie Ken Giles was able to convert a save out of the remaining pieces of the bullpen. In my opinion, when people say pitching wins championships, they most likely are referring to relief pitching. Starters, elite or mediocre, have a day in and day out ability to keep teams in games thru six innings. If you have enough quality arms in your bullpen, you shorten that game. Don’t believe me? Just look back to the 2008 squad, they were as good a pen as you could hope for and we all know how that ended. So what should the Phillies do moving forward? Click past the jump for my recommendation(s).

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Deconstructing The Phillies: Starting Pitching

October 7th, 2014 by Mike H. | Comments Off on Deconstructing The Phillies: Starting Pitching | Filed in Baseball, Phillies

After yet another horrendously obvious season, the Phillies finally know that something needs to change. Whether they act on that knowledge is a different story. As we wait to see how the winter unfolds for the Phillies, I thought I’d post some of my own ideas of how to “fix” this team. Along the way, other contributors will throw in their two cents as well. In the first week we’ll address the starting pitching. So for some drastic ideas, read past the jump. (more…)

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One Upping The Phillies

October 6th, 2014 by Mike H. | Comments Off on One Upping The Phillies | Filed in Baseball

Have the Detroit Tigers outdone the Phillies in regards to franchise set backs? After four division championships, two national league pennants, and one world championship, the Phillies headed into what would be the franchise’s best regular season. The Tigers, who were recently eliminated from the playoffs by the Baltimore Orioles, are also coming off their fourth division title with just one Fall Classic appearance.

Financially, the Tigers are heading into 2015 with roughly $125M tied up to Miguel Cabrera, Justin Verlander, Ian Kinsler, Joe Nathan, Joakim Soria, Anibal Sanchez, Rajai Davis, and David Price. That also assumes that Victor Martinez heads elsewhere after a superb season. The Phillies went into 2011, the season AFTER their fourth division title, with roughly $115M committed to 15 players. That’s $10M less for almost twice as many players.

Is it possible that Ruben Amaro Jr had finally jumped from 30th all the way to 29th in GM competency? While 2015 should be an “all out” for the Phillies. The Tigers may finally need to go “all in” before they become the most expensive team to not make the playoffs. Remember all the rumors about Rollins, Bastardo, and Papelbon all being fits for a trade to Detroit? I wonder how their season would have ended had they acquired some or all of those “fits”.

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Prince Fielder Signing Reaction

January 24th, 2012 by Mike H. | 1 Comment | Filed in Baseball

By now you know that Prince Fielder has agreed to sign with the Detroit Tigers for a deal valued at nine years and $214 million. I spoke earlier today with an acquaintance of mine who is a die hard Tigers fan. Needless to say he was ecstatic about the signing. I asked about the financial ramifactions going forward and he stated that the Tigers’ ownership had the money to spend and the “do whatever it takes” mentality to win a championship. Sounds familiar, right? Well let’s look at the signing analytically and see how it not only affects the Tigers going forward, but also Ryan Howard and the Phillies. (more…)

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Curtis Granderson to the Yanks in Three Team Blockbuster

December 9th, 2009 by Johnny G | 17 Comments | Filed in Baseball, General

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In a deal finalized Wednesday, the World Champion Yankees acquired Curtis Granderson in a three-team deal with the Detroit Tigers and Arizona Diamondbacks. In exchange for Granderson, the Tigers received left handed reliever Phil Coke, the Yankees’ best prospect in Austin Jackson, and Max Scherzer, and Daniel Schlereth from the Diamondbacks. The Diamondbacks are set to receive Ian Kennedy from the Yankees and Edwin Jackson from the Tigers.

The Detroit Tigers came into this year’s winter meetings clearly attempting to dump some payroll, after being among the most disappointing and highest paid teams for the last several years. Although Granderson is a big name and former all star, at this point he is largely overrated. His platoon splits are almost unimaginable, hitting just .183 against left- handed pitching. The overall strategy at this point is to get younger and cheaper. Max Scherzer has ace potential and has impressive strikeout numbers at a very young age. If Scherzer develops as expected, a 1-2 punch of Verlander and Scherzer could make the Detroit Tigers very dangerous in the future. Austin Jackson was the best prospect in the Yankees farm system and depending on which scouts you speak with, may be a potential all star or a solid regular in the big leagues. Regardless, he is a valuable player to have because he is very close to being ready for a call up, has impressive speed, and hits for a solid amount of power. Daniel Schlereth, son of ESPN NFL analyst Mark Schlereth, was mostly used as a left -handed specialist last season for Arizona, but many scouts feel he could be a future closer. He is cut from the same cloth as Rays closer, J.P. Howell. He has a fringe fastball that hangs around 88-90 mph, but has an extremely effective changeup for a relief pitcher, and a sharp breaking curveball.

The Diamondbacks obviously get the short end of the stick in this deal as they receive Ian Kennedy and Edwin Jackson. Kennedy was formerly recognized as a solid prospect, partly due to the regular hype issued to all Yankees prospects, and because many in the Yankee organization thought of him as “gutsy”. At this point in his career, any team would be happy to get a 5thstarter out of Ian Kennedy, but even that seems unlikely at this point. Edwin Jackson had an unbelievable first half of the season for the Tigers, but by mid-season his command issues starting to surface, as his stuff alone was not enough to get big league hitters out. The Tigers also played it smart by dealing Jackson before his issues were exposed too badly. If you look at his numbers for last season as a whole, they are still pretty solid but his command issues will prove too much to overcome. At his age, it is also something that is unlikely to be correctable.

Finally, the Yankees received Curtis Granderson, who now solidifies the one weak spot that the Yankees team had, and that is centerfield. Melky Cabrera is not an everyday player and was only serviceable because of the overall strength of the Yankees lineup. Now that Melky will most likely be used as a fourth outfielder, the Yankees lineup gets even more dangerous. As a left-handed hitter with power in the bandbox that is Yankee Stadium, Granderson could conceivably put up 40 homeruns in 2010. His platoon splits will always be a major concern because of his extreme inability to hit left-handed pitching but the overall upgrade both offensively and defensively will improve the Yankees team tremendously.

Overall, this deal makes a lot of sense for both the Yankees and Tigers. Unfortunately I cannot say the same for the Diamondbacks, who were completely robbed in this deal. They gave up a pitcher in Scherzer who is actually better, younger, and cheaper than Edwin Jackson, the pitcher they received in the deal. Ian Kennedy is basically a throw in with almost no value at this point and they gave up their ace in Scherzer, and a potential closer in the future in Schlereth. I think the Tigers got the best end of this deal though, followed by the Yankees who also did well for themselves.

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