October 11, 2007
Re-thinking ARod

My first reaction to the idea of the Mets signing ARod was an emphatic ¨no¨. I didn´t want them to tie up so much money in one player for so many years, as it might prevent investments in other areas–i.e. pitchers. I also was worried about moving Wright, and about the ephemeral issue of ¨team chemistry.¨  I just didn´t want any part of the circus.

But then I thought again. I remembered the impact that the signing of a premium player (Pedro) had on the team. I looked at ARod´s career stats. I looked at the young (i.e. cheap) guys coming up. And I looked at payroll projections going forward. And I realized that maybe it´s not such a bad idea. Here´s my thinking:

Sign ARod to an 8 year (with team options) deal for around $225 million. Structure it so the first year is between $20 and $25 million, or defer some money, in order to lessen the impact of having that plus Delgado´s $16 million on the books at the same time (or approach Delgado about deferring some). Move Wright to second base, eliminating the need to sign a second baseman, or the OF, eliminating the need to sign an OFer. (Wright could move to first in 2009, if the Mets could sign Orlando Hudson). Carp could possibly step in at first in 2009 or 2010. Sign a Yorvit Torrealba, or trade for Ronnie Paulino, to fill the catcher position for less money than a PLD would cost.

Here´s the tandem move that will make everyone mad. Trade Lastings, Heilman, and a minor leaguer (Mulvey, Niese?) for Dan Haren (preferably) or Joe Blanton. Haren is making about $5-7 million, and Blanton is making less than $1 million, though this may be an arbitration year for him. They´ll both give you 220 innings in 34 starts, with reasonale ERAs. This will solidify the rotation (Pedro, Haren/Blanton, Perez, Maine, Humber). I just don´t think that Milledge will ever get the chance or the break here that he needs to reach his potential, and in the long-term view, OF is a position of strength for the organization. In the short-term, his potential production is replaceable.

Pelfrey and Duque go to the pen. Duque is very flexible, and has killer stuff when he´s on; he´s also extremely competitive, and may flourish in tough situations in the pen for one year, or fill-in starts if needed. Pelfrey can concentrate on his killer fastball, and generate Ks or ground ball outs; maybe he´s a future closer, who knows. Pen: Wagner, Pedro2, DSanchez, Pelfrey, Duque, Smith, Sho, & Sosa.

If Milledge is gone, the possible OF alignments are: DW-Beltran-FA(Geoff Jenkins)/Endy; or Alou/Endy-Beltran-DW; or Alou/Endy- Beltran- FA, with Wright at 2B.

Long term OF: Fernando! (2009/2010)–Beltran–Gomez

Long term 2B: Wright, OHudson, and for his fans here, Gotay.

Long term 1B: Wright, Carp, low-mid level FA,

Long term rotation: Pedro (resigned for 2009/2010), Haren/Blanton, Maine, Perez (FA after 08- needs to be resigned), Humber/Mulvey/Guerra. There´s also still the possibility of signing one of the big guns (Santana, Sabathia, Peavey) after 2008, particularly if Pedro or Ollie aren´t re-signed.

Imagine a lineup in a few years of:

Reyes, OHudson, Beltran, ARod, Wright(1B), Gomez, Fernando!, Torrealba/Paulino/Pena, pitcher.

And a rotation of:

Pedro/Santana, Haren/Blanton, Maine, Humber, Perez/Guerra

And a pen anchored by Pelfrey and Burgos throwing heat, or a future FA.

By the way, in all this, the 2008 payroll number would rise to $140-$150 million (not counting Beltran´s deferred money), but in 2009 it would drop back down to the $120 million range (barring a big FA pitcher signing). With the new revenues from SNY and the new ballpark, and the $20 million annually from CitiBank for the naming rights, this isn´t an unreasonable burden.  

Having the best player in the game in the best city, on the best team would be a coup for the Mets and for MLB. Our mix of talented youth and proven veterans would make the rest of the NL quake in their boots, and it would be a great way to inaugurate the new CitiField. And I´m not too worried about chemistry anymore, as it´s pretty unpredictable and winning solves a lot problems anyway.

41 Responses to “Re-thinking ARod”

  1. Comment posted by Nj-MisterFunny on October 11, 2007 at 10:39 am (#545955)

    I have to say I was one to say “get ARod”. After many days of rethinking this I say no. Why?? His EGO is too big, his salary is outrageous and his contract states he must always be the highest paid player in baseballs. 30 million is alot to spend on one player.We could spend that or 3 or 4 guys namely pitchers.

    I take back my asking for ARod, Please forgive me ;-(

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  3. Comment posted by Future on October 11, 2007 at 10:54 am (#545975)

    I want him. He’s the best hitter in the league.

    I think trading Heilman and Lastings for anyone not named Johan Santana or Roy Oswalt to be a shitty trade.

    And if Peterson had a problem with Heath Bell because he didn’t care how Bell pitched but how he looked, how the hell do you think he will respond to Joe “Beached Whale” Blanton?

  4. Comment posted by NewJerseyManFreak on October 11, 2007 at 11:10 am (#545990)

    ha ha Future,

    I would do the Heilman and someone else like Gomez and Pelfry for Santana or Oswalt. Personally i think we should get rid of Heilman anyway. Sorry Custer

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  6. Comment posted by Future on October 11, 2007 at 11:20 am (#545992)

    Did you watch the end of the season where Heilman was the only reliever worth a damn down the stretch?

    Or did you just ignore it?

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  8. Comment posted by Future on October 11, 2007 at 11:22 am (#545993)

    2.27 ERA in the second half.

    August ERA: 2.31

    Sept: 2.04

    He’s the only member of the bullpen not to choke.

  9. Comment posted by NewJerseyManFreak on October 11, 2007 at 11:25 am (#545995)

    I did Future. I just remember Heilman choking alot. Bad plays in field and his special HR balls ;)
    There is something about him that bothers me. His body language really kills me. Call me crazy……………….

  10. Comment posted by Dave Magadan on October 11, 2007 at 12:24 pm (#546022)

    I think your talking about maybe a guy who’s gonna get 35M per year. I dont see him signing for less than 275-300M on the low end. Its his last big contract. With Boras on his side he probly will get it. Maybe the Cubs.

  11. Comment posted by SoCal Metfan on October 11, 2007 at 3:42 pm (#546187)

    I did Future. I just remember Heilman choking alot. Bad plays in field and his special HR balls ;)
    There is something about him that bothers me. His body language really kills me. Call me crazy……………….

    You’re crazy.

    As for the topic at hand, I’ve always been a proponent of bringing ARod to the Mets. However, I don’t like the idea that DW moving from 2b to 1b. DW is the younger, defensively *improving* player. It makes more sense to move ARod to 1b (where he’ll need to move to eventually anyway.

    That being said, I’ve also been interested to see if DW could play 2B. I really beleive he has the athleticism to handle the position capably. Fonzie once made that transition for the Mets, and I can see DW doing the same. Then, when ARod does made the move to 1st, DW could revert to 3b.

    As for Millege/Heilman for Haren, I think that would be a case of buying high (if Billy Bean would even sell a cheap young pitcher who just had a Cy Young-type season). It would also probaby necessitate a FA OF acquisition, which, in conjunction with an ARod signing would strain the Mets budget.

    I also hate to think how such a chain reaction of FA moves would deplete the Mets draft picks. A compensatory pick isn’t gold, but it should be factored into the thought process of whether moves should be made.

  12. Comment posted by Dave in Spain on October 11, 2007 at 4:05 pm (#546217)

    I think with ARod you wouldn´t need an offensive powerhouse OFer. More of a B or C level stopgap player to hold the spot til Fernando! is ready, which wouldn´t cost much if anything in draft picks. Maybe platoon him with Endy or Johnson. The alternative is to sign a guy who wants a chance at a championship and will sign at a discount to get it. $6 or 7 mill will not break the budget at this point– in for a penny, in for a pound. You could even resign Green! >ducks

  13. Comment posted by e poc on October 11, 2007 at 5:57 pm (#546320)

    i literally cannot believe that nj is the only person here who does not think that signing a-rod is a good idea. you want to give a 32 year old an 8-year, $200 million contract, when we have two of the best players in the game at the two positions that 32-year-old has ever played? that is insane. you want to move wright, one of the better defensive 3b in the game, to another position to accomodate a below average defender who’s only going to get worse with age? that is insane. doing this while also trading our best minimum wage player for blanton so that we can then use more money to sign yet another free agent outfielder? that is insane. and then sign santana and hudson as free agents too? where is all this money going to come from? do you realize that your proposed “in a few years” lineup and rotation is going to cost around $140 million a year, and that’s assuming that gomez, guerra and fmart actually turn into major league quality players at some point. and we’re not even counting the bullpen or bench. it also means that when wright and reyes reach free agency, we’ll have virtually no chance to resign them because we’ll still be committed to santana, a-rod, hudson to the tune of $60 million a year. this is insane. let’s take a deep breath and step away from the boras kool aid for a second. i love a-rod, but he’s 32 years old, coming off a career year and below average defensively. i’d love to give him 4/100 to play first base for us, but that’s not going to happen. let’s move on.

  14. Comment posted by Dave in Spain on October 11, 2007 at 6:50 pm (#546387)

    e-poc– Wow! I guess you´re against the idea. It´s not ¨insane¨ to propose signing the best player in the game. ARod has had a remarkable career, with no signs of slowing down. It´s certainly debatable though, which is why we do these journals to begin with.
    A couple of points:
    1. I´ve got no problem with having Arod play 1B or the OF if he´s willing, but it´s hard to dictate to the best player in the game. If he was willing, I´d prefer leaving DW where he is. That said, DW has said he´d be happy to change positions for ARod.
    2. I talked about the money above. 2008 payroll of $140-$150 million, with the 2009 payroll dropping down to about $120 million, primarily from the loss of Duque, Alou, and Delgado. Also the new money from the stadium and network and naming rights. And besides, it´s not my money!
    3. I included the bullpen and the bench in my payroll forecast.
    4. Why would you assume we would have no chance to re-sign DW and Reyes? Other contracts will come off the books around that time, including Beltran´s (and Pedro´s,assuming we sign him to a 2 year extension thru 2010).
    5. As I predicted, the Lastings trade part hit a nerve. The fact is, he´s not the second coming. He may be a very good player, but there have already been warning signs that he might have a tough time in NY (mostly thru no fault of his own). But his production is relatively easy to replace. What we don´t have is a durable, young pitcher of ace- or near-ace quality. You need to trade quality to get quality and we desperately need a quality ace. Haren is a steal at his current salary and is under contract for several more years. Blanton isn´t as good, but is durable, young and still cheap. He has as much potential as a pitcher as Lastings has as a hitter, imo.
    6. I´m not tied to any specific component of this plan. What would you do differently, given the basic assumptions of trying to sign ARod and also improve the pitching? I´m curious to hear your ideas…

    I hope that Omar considers almost any idea to improve the team, even those that some people will call ¨insane¨. Omar and Beane are both GMs that think outside the box, and are willing to take risks– that makes the hot-stove league fun! And that´s what it´s all about in the end…

  15. Comment posted by Dave in Spain on October 11, 2007 at 6:58 pm (#546403)

    BTW Future– yeah, Blanton is overweight (6´2″ 250) while Haren is 6´5, 220. But big doesn´t always mean bad, particularly when they´re still young. C.C. Sabathia, David Wells– alot of coaches think that the big guys ultimately have more endurance. One of the problems with Rich Harden is that he´s too lean, and that has made him subject to injuries.
    I´m not trying to defend Blanton– I´d much prefer Haren. The reason I decided to talk about these guys is that I´ve heard the rumors that they might be available in the right deal. I´d love Aaron Harang, but I haven´t heard anything about him being dangled.

  16. Comment posted by e poc on October 11, 2007 at 9:53 pm (#546657)

    1. david wright may be willing to change positions for a-rod, but that doesn’t mean it’s best for the mets.
    2. there is absolutely no way we have a-rod, santana, beltran, pedro and hudson on this team in 2009 with a payroll of $120 million. even if we don’t resign pedro (which we probably shouldn’t) the other three will cost $80-90 million a year. add in reyes, wright, blanton, maine, wagner, etc. and you’re looking at $150 million easily.
    4. maybe we will be able to resign reyes and wright, but i wouldn’t count it as likely if we’re paying santana and a-rod $50 million between them. reyes and wright are both going to be $20 million a year players (at least) when they hit free agency.
    5. there is no universe in which blanton has as much potential as lastings milledge. blanton is living his upside right now; milledge is 22 years old. also, last time i checked we actually have two young, durable, near-ace pitchers, as well as a full starting rotation, while we have no rightfielder if we trade milledge. you’re saying milledge’s production is replaceable, but actually, blanton’s production is way more replaceable; we already have three starters who are just as good as him.
    6. here’s my idea: offer a-rod 4/100 with the understanding that he’s got to play firstbase. offer a mutual option for the fifth year. if he wants more, let him get it somewhere else. that is my idea regarding a-rod. also, let milledge play right field. if you feel like we need a pitcher, try to sign schilling to a reasonable one year deal maybe, or something like gomez for blanton straight up. sign ramon castro to play catcher. he is better than paulino and torrealba combined.
    also, i don’t think that signing all the best players in baseball for a lot of money counts as thinking outside the box. here’s a crazy idea: what about humber/pelfrey, mulvey, gomez, and ahern for blanton and ellis? something tells me beane wouldn’t do it.

  17. Comment posted by Dave in Spain on October 12, 2007 at 5:46 am (#546700)

    1. agreed. As I said, if Arod was willing to change positions thar´d be my preference.
    2. As i said very clearly in the journal, the $120 million for 2009 is ¨barring any big FA signing¨; I think Santana would qualify as a big FA. I also said that I was not counting Beltran´s deferred money, so his qualifying pay in my calculation is $10 million. I included every player, starter/bench/rotation/pen, in my calculations. This includes ML minimum at 1B (carp). Maine and Humber are still pre-arbitration.
    4. Maybe Wright and Reyes will both be $20 million each, but I doubt it. Are there any current $20 million players outside the Yankees? Maybe Manny. And as I said, by the time they hit FA, other money will come off the books. How far ahead do you want to plan? I´ve projected out about 4 years, which is about as far as anyone can reasonably predict.
    5. How do you know Blanton is living his upside? He is 26 years old, the same as Maine and Perez. He already has 2 seasons with over 200 innings; neither Maine or Perez has ever pitched 200 innings in a season. He has had 2 seasons with a sub 4.00 ERA – in the AL.
    6. Arod will never take a 4 year deal. Why would he give up his current contract for just one more year. The goal of this journal is to play the ¨What if¨ game, so you have to start with a plausible offer and go from there. And you want to sign another 40+ year old pitcher in Schilling? You undervalue Blanton and overvalue Gomez if you think you could trade them straight up. And I also think Castro should be given a shot, but the people close to the team think that he´d break down playing every day, so what´s the plan B?
    As to your crazy idea- I think it´s possible that Beane might take that deal. It doesn´t give him the offensive plus that he´d like, but he might be able to spin one or two of those guys for an offensive piece that would work for him.

    From this and previous journals, it´s clear that we have different views of the team and what to do with it. But that´s cool– I think it´s fun to debate this stuff with other knowledgable Mets fans. One reason I love Metsgeek…

  18. Comment posted by lucienlc on October 12, 2007 at 7:59 am (#546702)

    First of all, there’s no way in the world I can see the Mets being able to sign A-Rod, so the whole discussion, though interesting, is somewhat hypothetical. The word is that A-Rod (or Boras) is looking for — at least — 8 years/$240 million with no caveats like team options, so it’s not clear that the numbers you’re positing even get a deal done. (I heard something like 12 years, $360 million this morning. I know that’s Boras, but…)

    Secondly, leaving aside the numbers, there is no way in the world that I can see George S’s ego allowing A-Rod to leave the Yanks for the Mets, regardless of the money it’ll take to sign him. Any other team, except the Red Sox, possibly. But not the Mets. And we all know that before allowing A-Rod to sign with the Mets, Boras would go back to the Yanks one last time (as he did with Beltran) to give them the opportunity to keep him.

    Furthermore, if the Mets are going to go for Johan (and I’m sure they are), they’re going to be saving their pennies (and trade chips) for him. And rightly so. Unfortunately, I don’t know if we have the pieces to get him, assuming the Twins are going to allow him to go this off-season. They were saying on the radio yesterday (and I happen to agree) that it would probably take something like Hughes/Cano for the Yanks to acquire him. I don’t think even Milledge/Maine gets it done, if the Yanks make that offer. Of course, it’s more than possible that they won’t.

    As far as the Milledge/Heilman/whatever thing goes, I am ambivalent. I don’t think we’ve seen Milledge’s upside yet, and I think there’s a lot of upside there. On the other hand, will the distractions of NY hurt his development? What kind of upside does Gomez have? Is his upper limit something like Endy Chavez (i.e. a solid fourth outfielder who’s great defensively)? It’s true that it’s easier to replace the production of a Milledge (if you don’t mind paying for it) than to acquire a top-level pitcher, so I wouldn’t be averse to trading Milledge for the right player, but I’m not sure who that player would be.

    And I agree with Dave and disagree with Future about Heilman. First of all, not looking at the numbers, but going on memory, I thought that Show was our best relief pitcher in September. He’s the one I remember getting the key outs down the stretch. Heilman did fine when you brought him in at the beginning of an inning when the game was tied, but I remember way too many games in Sept where he blew holds. (Is there a place one can find that stat?) I certainly would trade him in the right scenario.

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  20. Comment posted by MetsFanSince71 on October 12, 2007 at 8:49 am (#546708)

    i don’t want arod on the mets, too high maintenence and too much
    money for one player who STILL can’t hit in the post-season
    (.268 average with virtually zero impact this year is very subpar
    for a 20M man)…..

    and I think the arod talk is moot anyway….him and boras have
    laid out their plans months ago and he’s not coming to the mets

    the yankees will re-sign him at a staggering cost, making it
    steingrabber’s last big splash

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  22. Comment posted by MetsFanSince71 on October 12, 2007 at 8:56 am (#546710)

    I’m not adverse to trading Heilman (sorry custer), BUT a viable solution for setup man must be found first….

    until we know what we have in Dirty, right now I see no one on the Mets roster being a bridge to Wagner

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  24. Comment posted by MetsFanSince71 on October 12, 2007 at 8:58 am (#546712)

    the one thing that stands out most to me in your piece, Dave,
    is that I agree Minaya will indeed try to snag one of the young
    cheap pitchers from the A’s….seems he came close in ’07!

  25. Comment posted by NewJerseyManFreak on October 12, 2007 at 9:35 am (#546720)

    e poc,

    I can be rational at times ;-)

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  27. Comment posted by Future on October 12, 2007 at 12:04 pm (#546833)

    Dave: I brought up Blanton not because I don’t like him, but for a specific reason: Why trade for a guy who is basically Heath Bell physically when Peterson had a problem with Bell for that exact reason?

    Luci: You are entitled to your opinion, but I love how you just say “not looking at the numbers.” WHEN I CITE THE NUMBERS FOR HEILMAN!!!

    I mean, you can’t use that excuse this time. :)

    And if any of you have faith in Minaya to somehow make a fair deal with Billy Beane, kudos to you, but I’m not that crazy.

  28. Comment posted by andyglass1 on October 12, 2007 at 12:13 pm (#546840)

    Arod would likely be a great addition; he would definitely take some of the weight for offensive production off the shoulders of everyone else. Paying anyone $30.0m/yr is nuts…. The Yankees $200m payroll didnt guarantee anything; without Arod this year who knows how many games under 500 they might have finished. He absolutely carried them for the 1st 1/2 to 2/3’s of the season. If Alex has to have $30m/yr he can go back to a team like TX where the team ends up having no chance to win. David Wright as a 2b makes as much sense as R.Castro at 2b. Guys playing 2b are typically nimble & quick. Not the 1st two attributes you think of with David. He is not stellar at 3rd so I dont see 2nd or SS as options for him. Remember trying Jeffries and even Reyes at 2b ? If Arod joins the Mets at a reasonable salary have him play 1st or LF, unless he an improvement over David at 3b, then David can try 1st or LF. Milledge & Heilmann should bring more than Blanton. If Haren is a projected ace, ok. Last point not being mentioned, a major benefit of the Pedro signing was to restore credibility/relevance to the team & attract the highest potential Caribbean youngsters. Mission was completed with Gomez, Fernandez & Deolis what’s his name.

  29. Comment posted by lucienlc on October 12, 2007 at 12:54 pm (#546855)

    Luci: You are entitled to your opinion, but I love how you just say “not looking at the numbers.” WHEN I CITE THE NUMBERS FOR HEILMAN!!!

    But you see, numbers lie. You can always make statistics stand up and salute, but it doesn’t make them meaningful all the time. I pretty much watched every single game in Sept and I remember Heilman looking good whenever it didn’t matter much. But when it was really important, he gave up the big hit. So, sure, his overall numbers are fine for the month; I’m not contesting that. But the respective situations in each game are more important than the overall numbers, imo.

  30. Comment posted by lucienlc on October 12, 2007 at 1:33 pm (#546872)

    Okaaayyyy — you want numbers? I’ll give you numbers. :-)

    Heilman in September pitched in 17 games. He pitched very well at the beginning of the month, when the whole team was doing well. And overall, as the numbers show, he had a good September. But even so — In 7 of the last 11 games he pitched, the Mets were already losing, I believe, when he came into the game, so they weren’t as pressure-filled situations as if he’d been asked to hold a lead. In the 12th-to- last game, against Atlanta, he gave up two runs in 2/3 of an inning, and barely managed the hold. In his next appearance, against Philly, he gave up a run and lost the game in the 10th. He was fine for most of the rest of the month, but again, the Mets were losing most of those games by the time he came in. There were three games the Mets were actually winning when he came in of those last 11. In two of the three games, the Mets were leading by five runs when Heilman came in. Again, minimal pressure. In the third game, where the Mets were only leading by three, Heilman gave up two runs and barely scraped out a hold.

    As for his August — that’s really nothing to write home about. Heilman made 12 appearances in August. In those 12, he LOST three games (one a blown save), and blew another save. That’s a TERRIBLE ratio vs appearances. The blown save, btw, ruined the Glavine 7 inning no-runs beauty against Philly, where the Mets were winning 2-0 until Pedro F gave up a couple of hits in the 8th and Heilman then gave up a couple more hits and a walk, scoring the inherited runners (but not hurting his own ERA, incidentally) and allowing the Phils to tie 2-2 (so Mota could blow it in the 10th). Fairly key game, I’d say. In fact, I’ll note that of the 7 Philly games that we lost down the stretch, Heilman was a big part of two of those losses. Considering the fact that he only pitched in THREE of those seven games against Philly to begin with, that’s not a very good statistic.

    Also, what was Heilman’s ERA against the Phillies for the season? 7.94. Phils batted .375 against him. Nothing I’d be particularly proud of.

    So perhaps you’ll forgive me for not being wowed by his overall numbers. I’m not saying that Heilman isn’t a decent relief pitcher. But he did nothing in August or Sept this year to impress me enough to feel strongly about keeping him.

  31. Comment posted by Dave in Spain on October 12, 2007 at 2:13 pm (#546883)

    This is what I like! Some debate!

    Future: I hadn´t heard that Peterson´s problem with Bell was the weight. I thought it was more his stuff or his pitching approach. Regardless, I´d hesitate to compare a relief pitcher with minimal ML innings prior to 07 with a starter who pitched 220 or 230 innings effectively to a 3.92 (or thereabouts) ERA.

    MFS– I think Omar and Beane of of a similar mindset. If they can come to agreement they won´t hesitate to pull the trigger. I´d certainly prefer Haren over Blanton, and I think he´d be a great pickup if it happened. I´d stay away from Harden– he´s an injury waiting to happen a la Prior or Wood.

  32. Comment posted by Dave in Spain on October 12, 2007 at 2:14 pm (#546884)

    Has anyone heard a legit professional assessment of Pelfrey´s potential to pitch on back to back days? I´m curious as to his potential as a future closer…

  33. Comment posted by metswin2008 on October 12, 2007 at 2:23 pm (#546885)

    We need pitching, pitching and more pitching. And of course Barry Bonds would work. He could show the others how to use Steroids and not get caught. I know Show and Mota would appreciate the signing ;-)

  34. Comment posted by e poc on October 12, 2007 at 3:34 pm (#547007)

    luci: heilman pitched 5 2/3 innings against the phils this year. the era is nothing to be proud of, but the sample size suggests it’s nothing to get upset about either. also, he’s been used in generally highly leveraged situations now for the last three years and he’s posted era+s of 132, 119, and 140. he’s a pretty good setup man. not great, but pretty good.
    since i’ve been so negative in the last few weeks about suggested signings/trades, i thought i’d try my hand at a few suggestions:
    gomez and mulvey for blanton
    gomez, pelfrey/humber, mulvey, anderson hernandez, el duque for blanton and ellis.
    gomez for arroyo
    mulvey for ellis

  35. Comment posted by rfloh on October 13, 2007 at 6:54 am (#547173)

    I’m something of an A’s fan, they’re my favourite non-Mets team, so my comments below are going to be conflicted.

    There’s NO FREAKING WAY Haren gets traded for Milledge + Heilman +stuff. Haren is one of the most valuable properties in MLB. Look at his contract: $9.5M over the next 2 years + an option in 2010 for $6.5M. Look at his age: 26. Look at his performance this year: 3.07 ERA, 142 ERA+, 192 ks, 55 bbs. He doesn’t project to be an ace. He’s already an ace.

    Beane has been trying to get Milledge + Heilman / Pelfrey / Humber for Harden / Blanton for some time. If the Mets trade Milledge for Harden, Omar should be sacked.

    How good a trade for Blanton is, depends on whether the big improvement that Blanton had in his walk rate is sustained. Blanton cut his walk rate from 2.68 BB/ 9 IP last year, and 2.99 BB / 9IP in 2005, to 1.56 BB / 9 IP in 2007. Even his K / 9 IP has increased slightly, from ~5 K / 9 IP to 5.4 k / 9 IP.

    e poc,

    Ellis for Mulvey is highly unlikely, unless Beane doesn’t believe that Ellis is a great defender. My guess is that Beane will try to get more; failing that he’ll settle for the pick if Ellis walks at the end of 2008. Assuming that he is great defensively, ie ~15 runs above average defensively, he is above average, taking into account offense and defense, even in his worse year. BIS zone rating had him at +15 runs, STATS zone rating at +26 runs. UZR had him at +25 runs, best in MLB at 2b. And it isn’t just this year that he has great defensive numbers. This year, he is about 5 runs above average offensively, without positional adjustment. Assuming he is +15 runs defensively, that would put him at +20 runs above average in totality this year, without positional adjustment.

    Your other proposals involving Gomez + etc, probably had a better chance of happening at the start of the 2007 season. Blanton has improved this season, while Pelfrey has struggled somewhat, and Humber hasn’t been exactly all that impressive either. Considering what Beane was rumoured to be asking from the Dodgers for Blanton, Gomez + Mulvey isn’t going to anywhere close to enough. Gomez + Pelfrey, at minimum, might be enough. Furthermore, there are other teams, like the Braves for one, that also need starting pitchers. And despite the Teixeira trade, the Braves still have players, like Lillibridge or Escobar, or Kelley Johnson, that would be very attractive to the As.

    “Brandon” Arroyo is interesting. He will cost $3.95M in 2008, $9.5M in 2009, $11M in 2010, and a $2M buyout in 2011, total ~$26.5M over the next 3 years. A similar pitcher, someone like Carlos Silva, ie ~190 IP ~100 ERA+, is probably going to cost between $40-$60 million in the FA market. IMO, it would be worth trading Mulvey for him. Gomez? Probably not. IMO, for a rich team like the Mets, Gomez + Carlos Silva($50M contract) > Arroyo + $25M.

    Dave in Spain,

    Unless Wright starts regressing, he almost certainly is going to cost >$20 million when his current contract is up. Carlos Lee got $100M / 6. Taking into account Lee’s atrocious defense, Lee is merely a league average player. Alfonso Soriano, who is much better than Lee, got $136 /8. Ichiro! got $90 /5. Even Jermain Dye, coming off a bad year, got $22/ 2. Yes, they’re all OFs. Wright is a much better player than Lee, also better than Soriano. Wright was worth ~45-50 runs above average offensively. Assuming that his defense is average, according to Tango’s research, that is worth about $24-$28 million in the current crazy market. Assuming that his performance drops to 2005-2006 levels, he would be worth about $20M.

  36. Comment posted by Dave in Spain on October 13, 2007 at 10:08 am (#547178)

    rfloh– Good info on the A´s guys. While I think it highly unlikely that we could get Haren, I´d still like to try. And yes, Pelfrey & Humber has decreased trade value lately.
    As to Wright, you´re probably right. Yet in spite of all the good seasons/careers by ML players, the only current $20 mil/yr players are on the Yankees. I think that says something about the ability/willingness of teams to go too crazy. When Wright´s contract is up in 2011 or 2012, maybe inflation will have brought those numbers up, or maybe they´ll structure a deal that starts at $17-18 mill and moves up from there. By then Beltran´s deal will be over (except for the deferral payments), and Gomez (hopefully) will have taken over CF.

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  38. Comment posted by MetsFanSince71 on October 13, 2007 at 11:57 am (#547194)

    Yet in spite of all the good seasons/careers by ML players, the only current $20 mil/yr players are on the Yankees.

    Don’t count out the Cubbies, Dave. They overpaid for Sorianno and might be crazy enough to overpay again this off-season – especially if there’s any truth to the ARod-to-Cubbies rumors.

  39. Comment posted by Dave in Spain on October 13, 2007 at 1:17 pm (#547206)

    When it comes to ARod, wherever he ends up he´ll be the highest paid player in the game. I just don´t think too many teams are going to break the bank in a normal year– regardless of the talent. They may go longer on a deal, but they´ll try to keep the annual salaries ¨reasonable.¨

  40. Comment posted by MightyJoeOrsulak on October 13, 2007 at 5:48 pm (#547293)

    What about this crazy idea.

    Sign ARod and then trade him immediately for top-tier prospects (e.g. Clay Buckoltz+) while paying a third of his salary.

    Trade Beltran for Top-Tier Prospects and pay a fourth of his salary

    Trade Pelfrey and Humber for 1 Top-Tier Prospect (like Clement).

    Sign one of the Cy-Young Type free agents in ’09 and a Tex if he’s available…


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  42. Comment posted by MetsFanSince71 on October 13, 2007 at 6:25 pm (#547296)

    so basically Mighty Joe, you want the Mets to take a huge step back and rebuild??

    highly unlikely, the Mets are a contending team

  43. Comment posted by MightyJoeOrsulak on October 13, 2007 at 7:21 pm (#547299)

    I never said it was likely. I said it was a crazy idea. And that it might be a good idea.

    Their philosophy now seems to be:

    Plug your holes with expensive and marginally effective veterans. If necessary, shop your prospects for these veterans.

    Hope that Pedro Martinez will be highly effective.

    And little else. The Mets do not seem committed to any sort of plan, vision or strategy.

    But its only Oct. 13. We’ll see what they have in mind. I am not optimistic. I’m wondering if they’re dumb enough to sign Andrew Jones.

  44. Comment posted by sheadenizen on October 14, 2007 at 11:45 am (#547434)

    Why would they sign Andruw? They have enough outfielders. I can’t see that happening. Although if they signed him for LF, the average age of the team would drop by a lot….lol!

  45. Comment posted by MightyJoeOrsulak on October 14, 2007 at 1:21 pm (#547468)

    They were rumored to be interested in him. I’m hoping it’s baseless; but as I said, my trust in their management savvy is not particularly profound.

  46. Comment posted by rfloh on October 15, 2007 at 6:09 am (#547631)


    I believe you’re being too harsh on Omar. Yes, he has traded away some prospects; most GMs do this. The important thing is the best prospects in the system: Milledge + Gomez + FMart + Pelfrey + Humber + Guerra have not been traded away in a short-sighted trade. Omar appears to be willing to trade Milledge, but only for top-tier talent like Oswalt or Haren, and not a talented but effectively worthless player like Harden.

    Omar, when he has thrown money around, has, for the most part, only thrown money at stars: Pedro, Beltran, re-signing Wright, Reyes. There are no Zito or Carlos Lee type albatross contracts on the Mets payroll. He has, for the most part, managed to get league average or better pitching from cheap alternatives like Maine, Perez, El Duque, instead of paying retail for league averageness; yes, he signed Benson, he also traded him for Maine; And Glavine wasn’t expensive either, in terms of total value of contract.

    Boston aren’t exactly poor. If they want ARod, they can just sign him, instead of using Buccholz to subsidise his salary. Also, ARod is almost certainly going to want trade protection in his contract; it’s unlikely that he is going to be happy to be traded shortly after being signed.

    And Carlos Beltran, in this market, is probably a bargain. Unless you’re getting not just a top tier, but a can’t miss prospect at a key position, like catcher or 2b, in return, there’s no point.

  47. Comment posted by MightyJoeOrsulak on October 15, 2007 at 9:31 am (#547637)

    Fair enough. I hope you’re right; there’s a lot tis off season so far that sounds like Citi Field damage control, but again, it isn’t even the real offseason yet.

    What do you think their long-term strategy is?

  48. Comment posted by JamesSC on October 18, 2007 at 11:25 am (#548821)

    Selig would never approve a trade where the Mets signed ARod to a huge contract and then ate the contract to go to another team in the same off season.

  49. Comment posted by BiggieSmalls on October 27, 2007 at 5:44 pm (#552673)

    ARod is a once in a lifetime player. Over the next ten years – if he stays as healthy as he has been his whole career – he will surpass 850 home and possibly approach pete rose’s all time hit record. Strictly economically he is worth 35 mil a year to a franchise with a regional network in large market.

    I think 8 yrs/270 is a bargain. See if he’ll play right field (Why not?) and slot him in the # 4 hole after reyes, wright and betran. and the mets will score 950-1000 runs a year for the next 5 years.

    Dont resign Alou and castillo (old/always injured) and slot some speed in left field and second . this will save 13 mil easy. Delgado and his 16 mil is coming off next year… the mets can afford this.

    We can then deal from strength and package millage and heilman and whoever for an innings eater.. whoever that is.

    Look. Phillie is getting better, the cubs are getting better, the rocks, bravos and dbacks are young and getting better. If we dont make drastic improvements and roll out the same squad only a year older next year we will have a fight for the wildcard.

    This is NY. We have a new ball park and a new network in the largest market in the game. We have to do what it takes to improve. Cant rely on Milledge and Gomez coming thru and Moises staying in one piece and hitting 340 again. Thats a crap shoot.

    We can slot rooks and retreads (Duaner?, padillo? etc) in the bullpen.

    In 5 yrs 34 mil will be a pittance. MLB revs are growing like a weed. Get it done Omar.

  50. Comment posted by Dave in Spain on October 29, 2007 at 9:07 am (#553180)

    I still can´t decide about whether I want ARod or not. But…

    C- Brian Schneider or Ronny Paulino
    2B- Gotay/Ahern

    Pedro, Pettitte, Maine, Perez, Pelfrey
    Wags, C.Cordero, Heilman, PF, Duque, Sanchez, Schoenweis, Smith/Sosa

    C- Brian Schneider or Ronny Paulino
    1B-Teixeira (or Carp, or a FA holding space for FMart in 2010?)
    2B- Gotay/Ahern (or Hudson)

    Pedro(re-signed), Pettitte, Maine, Perez/Santana/Sheets, Pelfrey
    Wags, C.Cordero, Heilman, PF, Sanchez, Smith/Sosa/Muniz/Burgos