Nationals Arm Race

"… the reason you win or lose is darn near always the same – pitching.” — Earl Weaver

Winter Meetings Rumor Frenzy … and an unnecessary bomb dropped on the Nats about Harper


This is what Harper may want his agent to do with a baseball right now. Photo GQ magazine Mar 2012

This is what Harper may want his agent to do with a baseball right now.   Or maybe not.  Photo GQ magazine Mar 2012

Bryce Harper is not a Free agent for two more seasons.  So why the F is everyone writing glaring headlines about him right now??

I thought the Bob Nightengale article was a complete hack job against the Nationals, completely unnecessary and taking gratuitous shots at the organization over a situation that could go a dozen different ways between now and November, 2018 when he’s ACTUALLY a free agent.  And then the subsequent Jeff Passan article that followed it a complete over-reaction, basically pulling one potentially innocuous quote out of Nightengale’s article to write a 1,000 words chastising the entire Nats organization.  Was it really that slow of a news day in the National Harbor that these were the stories that had to be written yesterday??

I have never really liked Nightengale’s style of reporting; he was the one that trashed Adam LaRoche earlier this year by quoting a bunch of unnamed members of the White Sox front office, essentially enabling them to write their version of the narrative of that situation without having to put their name on it, but the Passan article caused me to lose a bit of reporting respect for him too.  Passan’s passing judgement on the entire Nats organization by virtue of one anonymous quote from an unnamed Nationals Executive who commented that the Nationals were “not prepared” to meet a 10yr/$400M contract.

Here’s a thought: stop quoting anonymous people who probably just threw out a line passing you in the hallway, or who have an axe to grind and are too chicken-sh*t to put their name behind their words, and put some journalistic integrity behind your reporting.

OF COURSE the Nationals are “not prepared” to meet a $400M contract demand.  Who is??  Are the Yankees, given the massive luxury taxes now built into future CBAs?  Are the Dodgers, who just got told to cut their debts or risk further penalties?  Are the Cubs, who just won a World Series on the backs of a bunch of pre-arb sluggers and reasonably priced arms?   What other organization in baseball has the financial where-with-all??  Certainly not the Nationals, who (thanks to a short-sighted deal and a ridiculously argumentative owner in Baltimore) are stuck in one of the worst RSN deals in the majors and thus are missing out on literally tens of millions of dollars of revenue?  How does any team commit a quarter of their payroll to one player in the modern age, especially one that has shown himself to be as injury-prone as Harper?

Harper is a great player.  Is he worth being compensated as easily the highest paid player in the game?  Not in my book.  He’s not better than Trout or Kershaw.  He’s not nearly durable enough to merit that kind of commitment from a sane organization and that puts him behind some of his other compatriots right now (Manny Machado for example).  He’s a product of his headline inducing agent Scott Boras and these two writers (well respected and nationally known) fell for it.  Again.  I’m sure he’ll get some ridiculous contract in 2018, but its no small secret that it probably won’t be the Nationals.

Can we go back to arguing about whether we should be saving a 19-yr old who has never played above A-ball instead of acquiring a recent NL MVP or a guy who has finished in the top 5 of Cy Young voting five straight years??



Written by Todd Boss

December 6th, 2016 at 9:38 am

103 Responses to 'Winter Meetings Rumor Frenzy … and an unnecessary bomb dropped on the Nats about Harper'

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  1. I was actually working out the Harper contract in my head while sitting on I-95 this morning. I’ll write it down at some point if I have the chance.

    Forget the media squawk. The truth of the matter is that between the new CBA and the new Dodger financial constraints, any future mega-deals from any team are going to look like the types of deals that the Nats have already been doing, with lots of deferred money and a couple of opt-outs. To me, that actually means that the Nats have a better chance of extending Bryce since he won’t be able to do remarkably better elsewhere.

    If they’re going to do it, let’s go on and get it done this offseason: 1) to keep it from being a stop-the-presses media distraction for the next two years; 2) while Ted Lerner is still alive, since he’s the Boras conduit; and 3) with Harper coming off a less-than-world-beating season.

    I actually take the sudden appearance of this story as Boras’s way of saying “let’s make a deal.” Now, the question of whether the Nats SHOULD do such a deal is another discussion entirely . . .


    6 Dec 16 at 10:45 am

  2. KW: of course you and I and the people that hyper-follow the Nats know its “media squawk.” But this is still a relatively young franchise and still depends on the casual fans and still is trying to build a fan base and articles like this do nothing but make the franchise look bad … for doing NOTHING wrong! If i’m Rizzo i’m finding the source and f*cking firing him for a) causing the distraction and b) not being in line with the executive team.

    Todd Boss

    6 Dec 16 at 10:51 am

  3. I am so cynical on this stuff that I think the team source may not even be a team guy, so this doesn’t get me too worked up.

    On hot stove, Thornburg acquired by Red Sox. I like this guy, and the cost didn’t seem too bad. Would have liked to see the Nats get him


    6 Dec 16 at 11:00 am

  4. Oh, this has the smell of a Boras power squeeze all over it. He’s the anonymous source! After all, he’s one of the best-paid members of the Nationals’ organization . . .

    Wally, I agree on Thornburg. I hope the Nats aren’t missing out on these types of quality deals on lower branches while barking up the tallest trees in the forest.


    6 Dec 16 at 11:26 am

  5. Boras clients on the Nats as FA signings/non draft acquisitions: Scherzer, Werth, Gonzalez, Perez
    Boras clients on Nats via draft: Goodwin, Harper, Rendon, Strasburg, Espinosa

    You’d think for the amount of money the Nats have invested in Boras clients, not to mention the number of times they’ve bailed Boras out by signing his guys, that he’d NOT attempt to F*ck them in the press.

    Boras FAs of Note/Interest to the Nats: Stephen Drew, Dustin Ackley, Carlos Gomez, Desmond Jennings, Alex Rios, Matt Wieters, Kyle Lohse, Jered Weaver, Luke Hochevar, Greg Holland.

    Interesting how many of these names have already been linked to the Nats … or who may soon be even on a pillow/recovery contract.

    Todd Boss

    6 Dec 16 at 11:39 am

  6. Danny dropped Boras or got dropped; not sure which. So it wouldn’t piss off Uncle Scott if we trade him!

    I don’t want Greg Holland. There’s too much uncertainty with him. Either get a sure thing or stay with the in-house arms, even if it means moving Lopez to the ‘pen.


    6 Dec 16 at 11:49 am

  7. Jeff Sullivan on why the Nats would trade Giolito:

    Thanks for helping to drive down his value!


    6 Dec 16 at 11:53 am

  8. Read that piece; I could have summarized it as follows:

    “If you assume the worst case based on an incredibly small sample size and ignore the known caveat that he himself has admitted that his mechanics were a mess, then yes Giolito is over-valued and worth trading since he won’t ever amount to sh*t.”

    Todd Boss

    6 Dec 16 at 12:35 pm

  9. Just to feed the monster, here’s what a Harper contract could look like. I am NOT arguing whether this is what the Nats should do, just throwing out some numbers.

    Signing bonus: 15M total–5M 1st yr, 5M 2d yr, 5M deferred
    1. 20M, 5M of it deferred (arb year)
    2. 25M, 5M of it deferred (arb year)
    3. 40M, 15M of it deferred
    4. 40M, 15M of it deferred
    Opt-out opportunity
    5. 40M, 15M of it deferred
    6. 40M, 15M of it deferred
    7. 35M, 10M of it deferred
    8. 35M, 10M of it deferred
    Opt-out opportunity
    9. 30M, 10M of it deferred
    10. 30M, 10M of it deferred
    11. 25M, 10M of it deferred
    12. 25M, 10M of it deferred

    If it were me, I’d also try to make the last couple of years team option/buyout years.

    Total: $380M, $135M of it deferred

    At no point does he cost more than $25M against an annual payroll.

    For perspective, the Max and Stras deals TOGETHER total $385M.


    6 Dec 16 at 12:36 pm

  10. that’s Sandy Koufax’s career stats. He wasn’t successful in the big leagues until arguably his SEVENTH pro season. that’s Randy Johnson’s career stats. he didn’t even DEBUT until his age 24 season and wasn’t effective until he was 26. hell, that’s Roger Clemens. He was a college draftee from a big-time school, pitched in the CWS, etc … and he had a 4+ ERA his rookie year.

    the fact that Giolito or Lopez struggled their first time through the majors means NOTHING. Its like judging a player on a few dozen at-bats. You need hundreds of IPs, hundreds of ABs before passing judgement.

    Todd Boss

    6 Dec 16 at 12:39 pm

  11. Todd, I think the problem with Giolito wasn’t the results, it’s that his stuff wasn’t quite what was advertised. There’s a big difference between a 93-94mph fastball and a 99-100mph fastball. And the spin rate is a metric that has shown to be correlated with “swing and miss” stuff – possibly because the additional rotation moves the ball and keeps hitters from getting to it.

    That said, I read the article and didn’t have any problem with it. He wasn’t saying that Giolito was a bust at all – just that the results haven’t quite tracked the hype. I think that’s pretty fair.

    John C.

    6 Dec 16 at 12:51 pm

  12. Quick interjection: Luke Erickson at Nationals Prospects has his annual crowd-source poll for top bats in the organization running now, with arms to follow. Vote early and often.


    6 Dec 16 at 12:55 pm

  13. Greg Maddux really struggled in his first MLB year and a half as well. I cited him and some of the ones Todd did at some point during the summer in discussions of the early struggles.

    At the same time, you don’t want to be “wrong” in overestimating Giolito, Lopez, or Robles. As I’ve noted, the Nats made the right call on flipping Alex Meyer.


    6 Dec 16 at 1:15 pm

  14. Sale to Red Sox. Wow. No great loss to the Nats in my mind, though. The Nats would have really had to overpay to “fix” something that wasn’t broken.


    6 Dec 16 at 1:18 pm

  15. I think we need a sanity check on “velocity” for starters. Here’s the top five qualified starter MPH figures for 2016: Snydergaard 97.9, Carlos Martinez, Ventura, Jose Fernandez and then Jon Gray at 95.0 even in 5th place for the entirety of the MLB.

    Giolito’s fastball velocity in 2016: 93.3 average, which would have tied him for 17th in the majors by the way had he qualified … and that was with his admitted mechanical flaws that were costing him velocity!!

    Nobody has a 99-100 mph average fastball as a starter. What Snydergaard is doing is sick and ridiculous yes … and incredibly rare. Relievers? Sure; upper 90s a dime a dozen. Starters? if you’re averaging 93-94 you’re top 20 in the league.

    Yes Giolito has been overhyped. Rumors of “sustained 99” have been heard and clearly aren’t true. Why don’t we see what happens after the spring, when presumably he gets a chance to get his mechanics back on track. If he ticks his average fastball up just 1 full mph then he’s at 94.3, which would be 8th in the majors. I mean … is it already faintly ridiculous that we’re all “disappointed” that he’s only throwing average velocity that would already put him at top 20 in baseball when he’s not even back at full workload post-TJ surgery?

    (Lopez by the way, avg of 95.8, peak of 99.1 … that avg would be 4th best in the league. which is awesome and shouldn’t be discounted … but unless he can find effective secondary pitches he’s in the same boat).

    Todd Boss

    6 Dec 16 at 1:19 pm

  16. Red Sox paid a *fortune* for Chris Sale. Moncada, Kopech AND two other prospects. wow. Figured it was Dave “I hate prospects” Dombrowski to make that deal.

    Todd Boss

    6 Dec 16 at 1:22 pm

  17. And Snydergaard’s arm isn’t going to last . . .

    Chisox said to have insisted on Trea. Heck yeah that’s a great non-deal on our part. I’ll reiterate, unless the return involves Trout, Trea isn’t going anywhere.


    6 Dec 16 at 1:23 pm

  18. I should note as a follow-up to the Giolito conversation … Keith Law DM’d me on Twitter when I called him out for what I thought was “hedging” on Giolito recently, and here’s precisely what he said about Giolito’s velocity:

    “I don’t think you misrepresented it [his stance], but I did want to correct something. A guy who hits 100 once, pitching on a week of rest, wouldn’t automatically get an 80 fastball grade (or 75, a grade I’ve never used or heard a real scout use). So I wasn’t hedging, but would make a clear distinction between a Riley Pint, who hits 100 regularly as a starter, and a Giolito, who was 94-98 in HS and happened to hit 100 that one time. That’s all.”

    So there’s the scouting report on Giolito: 94-98 in HS, hit 100 one time well rested. What we did NOT see what anything close to a peak of 98 during his stint; does anyone know where to get minor league pitchf/x numbers from years past to see if this is the new norm or just a bad trend as I suspect?

    Todd Boss

    6 Dec 16 at 1:29 pm

  19. A return of the equivalent of Moncada, Kopech and 2 others would be at least Gioito, Fedde and two lower end guys. It isn’t exactly apples-to-apples Moncada to Giolito because hitter vs pitcher and b/c of giolito’s shine being off a bit… but the current mlbpipeline rankings of those guys are roughly equivalent.

    Would you have traded Giolito/Fedde/plus for Sale? I think i’d think long and hard about it…

    Todd Boss

    6 Dec 16 at 1:34 pm

  20. The rumor was Giolito and robles, plus one or two others, for Sale. So I think it’s roughly comparable with a slight edge to BOS because Moancada is the #1 prospect. And it made me uncomfortable to be honest. I am ok with Giolito or Lopez, because they are pitchers. I was not happy to trade Robles tho.

    So I’m kind of relieved


    6 Dec 16 at 2:02 pm

  21. Maxing out to get Sale never made any sense to me. In the list of areas where the Nats need to improve, starting pitching would be at the bottom.

    Unless the Nats internally think Fedde has passed Giolito or Lopez (which is possible), Fedde is the main guy I would be dangling, yet he hardly seems to get mentioned at all. I’m actually surprised that Soto hasn’t been in the trade talk, either. I know he’s a long way away from the majors, but it’s possible he has a higher upside than Robles.


    6 Dec 16 at 2:18 pm

  22. Apparently there’s a rising tide of national media crap about the Nats “losing” the winter meetings because of Sale, Melancon, no deal on Cutch, etc. Just remember all those “great” deals we missed out on last year on guys like Heyward and Phillips and how we just had to get by the best we could with Murphy.

    Also remember that most of Rizzo’s deals do not play out in public.


    6 Dec 16 at 2:31 pm

  23. Yeah, KW, that was exactly my thought. Last offseason was a never ending criticism of the Nationals – yow yow yow, “dysfunctional clubhouse,” Nats “unable to give away money” (which turned out to be a lot of crap, but if you repeat something often enough it becomes truth for some). And the Nats went out and won 95 games and the Division.

    Stupid. Year after year the teams that “win” the offseason underperform in the regular season.

    John C.

    6 Dec 16 at 2:40 pm

  24. I don’t bother reading those kinds of things. Means nothing and is driven by guys who needs page views. I’ve found that the best way to evaluate how your team is doing is ‘ would you have done that deal on comparable terms’? That’s more realistic. Everything else is pure speculation

    No to MM
    No to Sale
    Yes to Thornburg

    Cutch hasn’t moved so no way to have an opinion.


    6 Dec 16 at 2:43 pm


    Gio Gonzalez to Yankees rumor…. which may be dead since Nats didn’t get Sale.

    Todd Boss

    6 Dec 16 at 2:43 pm

  26. Was just talking to a superfan who expressed disappointment that we missed out on Melancon. I tend to agree with Keith Law’s take on Melanson; overpay, he’ll be good for a year and a half or so and then turn into Papelbon; an overaged, undervelocity closer with an 8 figure salary.

    Todd Boss

    6 Dec 16 at 2:45 pm

  27. I don’t know if I agree necessarily, but my issue with the pay that these closers are getting is that it basically pays them as 2 WAR guys every year. Which is super hard to do for a guy pitching 60 IPs a year. And then to spread it out over 4 or 5 years? Just seems very low probability of working out.


    6 Dec 16 at 2:53 pm

  28. I still like to see trades for Davis and Cain or Pollock. I’d bet they can get both and keep Robles.


    6 Dec 16 at 2:54 pm

  29. Todd… you have swallowed the hook again on the Giolito hype.

    You cannot seriously be arguing that Giolito is in the upper ranks of fastballs in all of MLB. On our own team Scherzer, Strasburg, Roark, Ross, and Lopez consistently throw faster. So if he is 6th on our own team i doubt he is 17th in MLB. And since he threw all 4 seamers, his stats were not fuzzy like the others who threw a lot of 2 seamers.

    Plus he was incapable of getting a swinging strike, so trying to argue his stuff was in any way major league top 20 is laughable. Another example of you trying to find a statistic or rumored excuse somewhere that will fit your arguments and excuses for all our hyped up guys when they are failing.

    And per your earlier argument, I’m pretty sure Randy Johnson was throwing 100 mph heaters even when he was failing in the minors. As John C alluded to above, the dour outlook on Giolito was not based on game results but the evidence of his stuff, both against the radar gun and bats of the guys he was pitching against.

    Anyway… worst part of these trade deals in this new media age is that we leave our players hanging out to dry when the deal doesn’t get done. That’s bad management and bad for the player’s psyche coming back to the organization that was so obviously trying to deal them. If I was a player in that situation I certainly would not want to run through a brick wall for the organization anymore and would only look out for myself regarding playing through any minor injuries, taking a fastball in the back for the team etc…

    Marty C

    6 Dec 16 at 3:02 pm

  30. Marty. I just posted links to the Stats. They’re pitch F/X stats. I don’t know what else you want. But i’ll tell you that a) you’re wrong on Roark and Ross , and b) I never said he threw faster than Scherzer/Strasburg/Lopez. to the contrary I specifically pointed out Lopez’s superior velocity!

    Here’s a quote of what I said: “Giolito’s fastball velocity in 2016: 93.3 average, which would have tied him for 17th in the majors by the way had he qualified.” that’s absolutely true, and entirely based on the two links to fangraphs pitch f/x data. If you want to argue against pitch f/x data … then i can’t help you.

    I think the fundamental issue I have with your bashing of Giolito and Harper is this: when a player under performs a previously seen level, then there has to be a logical reason for it. That reason can fall into one of just a few categories:
    – He’s aging and can no longer perform at peak levels
    – He’s struggling through injuries that are affecting his peak performance.
    – He’s struggling through mechanical issues (pitching motion, batting stroke) caused by some unknown reason
    – He’s struggling mentally for some reason that’s harder to quantify or demonstrate

    Giolito is on record saying that he struggled mechanically this year. This point is supported by independent reporting. Statistically he isn’t throwing as hard as he has been observed to have thrown previously. For me, that’s evidence enough to explain his struggles in 2016, to explain why he struggled with command, why he lost velocity.

    If you choose not to believe that the above set of circumstances can be a possible outcome, or if you refuse to believe that a player’s output may be affected by things besides his ceiling talent level, then i’m going to struggle to have a legitimate conversation with you. I’m not making these things up.

    I could be wrong. He could have totally hit a wall and in reality he’s just a 4-A pitcher. However, i’m not making that judgement based on 20-some MLB innings, most of which were against pretty tough offenses (he faced the Mets twice, Colorado and Arizona).

    Todd Boss

    6 Dec 16 at 3:19 pm

  31. We’ve had this debate before, but I agree with Todd about Giolito. Yes, it’s concerning that Giolito didn’t get a lot of swinging strikes in the big leagues, and it’s also concerning that his fastball was more mid-90s than upper-90s as we had expected. These things matter and ought to affect his prospect value.

    But they ought to affect his prospect value only by the amount they matter. He threw 21 innings in the big leagues in 2016. If your prior was #1 starter for Giolito, then 21 innings – no matter how poor – is just not enough to knock you off of that prior in any meaningful way. His performance in the minors in 2016 was perfectly consistent with his past performance – he looks like a front of the rotation guy – more Ks than IP, ERA in the 2s/low 3s.

    Having said all of that, I would gladly have traded him for Sale. Even though Sale is the better player, I think McCutchen fits the Nats’ needs a bit better. I hope we get a deal done with PIT at a reasonable price.


    6 Dec 16 at 3:34 pm

  32. I completely agree on the Melencon overpay, pretty stupid from the Giants perspective.

    After seeing what the White Sox got for Sale, thank you Mike Rizzo for not making that trade.

    Mark L

    6 Dec 16 at 4:54 pm

  33. Good for Rizzo. The Nata need to keep Robles unless they are bringing in a superstar CONTROLLABLE position player.

    For all the talk of Giolito’s value plummeting, I think Rizzo walking away demonstrates that he values our prospects.

    These Latin assets that succeed after getting their big bonuses are great chips. And to think the #3 player dealt for Sale got twice the bonus Robles did.

    Murphy was option C. We are lucky Rizzo doesn’t panic to get his deal.


    6 Dec 16 at 6:14 pm

  34. Todd… if you watched all the games, you would have realized that Roark or healthy Ross could throw faster than Giolito anytime they wanted to call it up.

    And to those who think Giolito was taking something off his fastball, you must be joking. Any rookie in his first time up is going to throw as hard as he can. Especially when he ‘s getting hit all over the yard.

    Roarks right hip swinging fastball was 93-94 mph consistently and it was a breaking fastball!

    So this PitchFX stat you are using you should throw in the trash as it is obviously not a good indicator of of a good or even fast fastball in real life. They must be mis-identifying some 2 seamers as 4 seamers. Most of our converted relievers also threw harder than Lucas including Treinen, Rivero, etc… You are the only pundit out there that is arguing, and now trying to make statistical arguments that that Giolito’s fastball is not disappointing as compared to the hype!!

    Funny thing Todd is preseason last year I told you I thought Giolito’s mechanics were sloppy from what I saw the season’s before.. You disputed that and even posted a video of Giolito pitching as your argument that his mechanics looked great. Look it up on your own blog.
    Now you’re saying his mechanics look bad. I’ve been saying that all along.

    The other problem with your stats Todd is you list 3 hall of famers that took a while to make it, but did not list the thousands of pitchers who never made it.

    You say Harper is injured. Exactly one writer has said or leaked he was injured. But about 3 dozen baseball analysts say he has bad mechanics.

    Fact is… both Giolito and Harper need a mechanical overhaul. If they continue what they are doing and buy in to all these excuses, they will probably perform similarly to this year. You can’t just say just because Harper had 1 great year that all his other years must be great unless he is injured. Players swings get out of whack and opponents ruthlessly adjust to a players weaknesses.

    Marty C

    6 Dec 16 at 8:01 pm

  35. Wow, I spend half a day away from the computer on real-life stuff and can hardly catch up. The closer wars seem to be escalating rapidly.

    I would have loved to have Melancon . . . for two more years. I also used the Pap comparison; front end of contract very good, back end not so much. The Royals have always wanted a big price for just one year of Wade Davis. Chapman said to be over $80M in offers and climbing.

    Robertson will turn 32 before the start of the season, same age as Melancon, but signed for just two years. I see decline all the way across on his 2016 stats, though. Buyer beware.

    I also see his stats and wonder why we would shell out for him, both in trade and the 2/$25M he’s owed, when we’ve already got Solis, not to mention Treinen, Glover, and maybe Lopez. That’s four nasty arms, not to mention Kelly and perhaps a Gott resurgence. I’m not that worried about “closing.”


    6 Dec 16 at 9:25 pm

  36. FWIW in the Giolito debate, his K/9 in AA in 2016 was 9.13, and 9.64 in AAA. Given time to adjust to the level, the Ks should come in the majors.


    6 Dec 16 at 9:29 pm

  37. Rumors the Nats in on Davis, which is one of the things that I’ve been suggesting. I just think they like his price tag and length of commitment.

    And I’ll continue to suggest Pollock as an affordable option in CF. I think they hold on to Robles in both deals, which is my main priority.


    6 Dec 16 at 9:36 pm

  38. My current thinking is that if Robles is included for anyone that’s been discussed, I’ll consider it a let down. I am ok losing Lopez or Giolito (or Ross, but I see him with the highest value of the three, so it would have to be for a premium guy), not because I’m down on either, but more because the Nats have so much pitching, and pitching prospects are so risky.

    Here’s another idea: MAT and Voth for Doolittle. Would you do it?


    6 Dec 16 at 9:38 pm

  39. On Sale, no one mentioned it, but I really wondered about his potential reception in the Nat clubhouse after the LaRoche affair. He really came off as a nut job during that deal. All of that was another part of the reason I was wary. But the real one was that the price was too high, at least on the Nats’ needs-vs.-resources scale. And if the Chisox really did insist on Trea, it was never going anywhere anyway.


    6 Dec 16 at 9:41 pm

  40. Bye bye Buffalo. Seemed like a reasonable contract we could have given him.


    6 Dec 16 at 9:45 pm

  41. Wally, I have a hard time seeing the A’s taking a no-contact guy like Taylor, although they do seem to be in the market for a CF. I’ve been insisting for years that Voth would end up in, though. Does Doolittle come at less of a price since he hasn’t done much “closing”? He’s signed for four years for less than Robertson will make in two.


    6 Dec 16 at 9:45 pm

  42. Buffalo needed to roam in the AL, although perhaps on a softer prairie than in Tropicana. I’m glad he went to sort of an underdog team. He could end up being a big cog there.


    6 Dec 16 at 9:48 pm

  43. Nats now reportedly the “snag” in the Cubs getting Wade Davis. This day may set the all-time record for Nat rumors. One year of Davis is NOT worth one of the big-three prospects or Ross, maybe Fedde at most, but that seems steep to me for one year.


    6 Dec 16 at 9:54 pm

  44. Wally, the big deal to me about Robles is that there’s so little positional depth. I did my top 10 bats for Luke’s site, and it’s a thin list. I do wonder if the Nats have become convinced internally that Soto may have a higher ceiling than Robles, though.


    6 Dec 16 at 10:06 pm

  45. If the A’s have interest in Dyson, which is reported, I think they’d see some value in MAT. I don’t think he’ll hit enough to be a regular, but he does have power and speed and you can dream on him. And Doolittle is coming off injury which hurts his value. So maybe.

    I’d be shocked if the Nats, or anyone, has Soto > Robles. Even if you ignored that Robles produced at higher levels, and assumed the hitting was a wash, you still have Robles speed and defense providing much more of a cushion to value.


    6 Dec 16 at 10:15 pm

  46. Nats reportedly offered Giolito, Robles, AND Lopez for Sale. Wow. I just don’t get why they were so insistent in the need for Sale. They need an everyday player (CF/SS) more.

    If the Pirates are looking at guys like Fister and De La Rosa, why wouldn’t they be interested in ready-now guys like Gio and Cole? Do they think it would be too confusing to have two Coles in the same rotation?

    Looks like the Nats succeeded in driving up the price for Wade Davis. I didn’t want to give up anyone significant for just one year of him.

    All in all, I don’t consider these “misses.” The Nats are just being prudent shoppers. If they end up with someone like Pollack, Cutch, or even Villar (hate all his K’s, though), they’ll be ahead in the end.


    7 Dec 16 at 6:54 am

  47. Sale is an elite SP and his contract was affordable for the Nats. That doesn’t come along often, so I get why they made an extraordinary effort for him. And I hope the current reports that they are no longer looking for a starter are true, because they don’t need one.

    I’m ok with low level moves from here. Ziegler, maybe. Drew.

    Worried that Desi gets squeezed again. Wish he took the QO.


    7 Dec 16 at 7:21 am

  48. I don’t “hate on” Desi, but I also don’t have much sympathy for him, either. He turned down a big contract from the Nats as well as two QOs now. I know he was a great teammate and one of the best Nats ever in the community, but I’m glad that the Nats are moving on from such low-contact players. I look forward to the departures of Danny and MAT for the same reason.

    The CF market is curious. The Rangers poked around on Cutch but have re-signed Gomez (apparently). If the Cards trade for someone like Dyson, the market for Fowler (and Desi) will have really contracted. I don’t know if that will bring Fowler’s price down, but it should. It may also bring down the Pirates’ price on Cutch. I don’t know that the price on Eaton will come down, though, as the Chisox don’t have to trade him; they’re just fishing with him. I haven’t seen much scuttlebutt on Pollock . . . but then again, Rizzo likes to do things without much scuttlebutt.

    I still think the Nats will add at least one significant field player, OF or SS. To do so, they may have to get Gio’s salary off the books, and/or Danny’s. The Angels are very much in the market for a 2B. Not sure why Danny isn’t more in the conversation there.

    Everyone is jumping up and down, but what’s going on is VERY typical of Rizzo. He’s in the conversation on all the premium guys who could help, but he has a value in mind, and he sticks to it.


    7 Dec 16 at 9:47 am

  49. We have to stop relating to our Nats as if they are a different team and organization.

    This is a team that was very close to a championship last year, despite losing Ramos and Strasburg, and despite underperformance by Harpera and others.

    As in previous years, it was the offense and specifically a lack of clutch hitting that killed the team. Melancon was a great addition and a champion.

    So from my perspective, the Nats only improve by adding champion players. Dexter Fowler is not worth a big investment. This is not Daniel Murphy, a player showing himself going to the next level.

    So I am looking forward to Rizzo moving carefully and in a way that recognizes that there is a lot of young talent that can really transcend on this team. If that means Severino is the #8 hitter playing catcher, OK. If that means that Dusty’s love of Michael Taylor gives him a chance to mature, great. If that means we see a closer competition between Treinen, Glover, Kelly, Solis, and even Lopez, great.

    There is tremendous starting pitching depth from which to make a significant upgrade. But if there is no upgrade coming, fuggetaboutit.


    7 Dec 16 at 10:25 am

  50. And if the team plugs in an outfielder, let it be for the shortest deal possible, to keep the field wide open for Robles or another FA next year more worthy of a long term investment.


    7 Dec 16 at 10:27 am

  51. Marty; i don’t depend on “watching the games” to make my points. I depend on stats. You’re falling into a simple bias based on your observations which isn’t supported by facts. Go to, punch up Giolito, Roark and Ross, clikc on their pitch f/x data and you’ll see their maximum fastball velocity for this past season and you’ll quickly see that they NEVER thrown a ball as fast as Giolito’s max. Nor were their averages better than Giolito’s average.

    Yes, there is a difference between velocity and value. That was never part of this argument; it was and always has been about Giolito’s missing velocity.

    I never said “Giolito was taking something off” his fastball. I believe that his mechanics are off and therefore its costing him velocity.

    It remains a possibility that Giolito never returned to his pre-TJ velocity. As is the case for anyone who gets cut. But nobody has shown that to be the case. Scouting reports on Giolito in HS show him 94-98, hitting 100 with a ton of rest that he’ll never get again pitching every 4 days. Baseball America reported him showing “95-plus” fastball post surgery, to go with his 70-80 grade curve. If he had permanently lost his velocity, he wouldn’t have continued climbing prospect ranking charges like he did. But whatever, i’m going to stop posting links to prove my points becuase you clearly don’t read them and clearly don’t believe anything that doesn’t confirm your observational opinion.

    I’m pretty sure I trust Pitch F/X more than your “I watch all the games” opinion.

    You understand that “major mechanical” issues such as a head jerk or a badly trailing arm are significantly different than subtle ones such as foot placement and slightly different arm slot right? I have always maintained that Giolito’s major mechanics look very clean (you want to see bad major mechanics, go google Carson Fulmer) … but that his minor mechanics have been altered in subtle ways.

    I noted those Hall of Famers who struggled early on specifically to discount yours or anyone’s passing judgement on Giolito after 21 MLB innings. Its such a ridiculously small sample size as to be laughable.

    Lots of writers have noted Harper’s issues and suspected injury. I meticulously posted stat-based data to make my points about harper in a previous thread, but apparently you don’t “believe in stats” and didn’t respond to any of them.

    How are these “excuses” if they’re logical explanations for things?? Harper hurt ==> Harper struggles. Giolito admits mechanics issues ==> lower velocity and command issues not previously seen. YOu know there’s a difference between excuses and explanations, right?

    Todd Boss

    7 Dec 16 at 10:28 am

  52. KW: where did you see Giolito, Robles, AND Lopez for Sale? I only saw Giolito+Robles for Sale. I’m kind of shocked if CWS preferred Moncado+Kopech+2 lesser guys versus Giolito+Robles+Lopez; that seems like a better prospect haul.

    Then again … every team values things differently. A top-end batter is going to be more valuable than a top-end pitching prospect with a TJ on his resume.

    Todd Boss

    7 Dec 16 at 10:41 am

  53. it was on MLBTR last night.

    I find it curious to read this stuff, and never know what was actually the truth. Look at last year – according to reports, Rizzo tried for Zobrist, then Phillips, settled on Murph. Did that really happen? If yes, was he just lucky to be rebuffed, then get Murphy? You could make this argument numerous times – tried for Tex, tried for Fielder. Was he lucky for losing out on those guys?

    I come out that the reports are overblown. Otherwise, he gets lucky an awfully high amount if the time, which seems hard to believe.


    7 Dec 16 at 11:05 am

  54. In Rizzo we trust right? when it comes to trades, you’re hard pressed to find losers in his history.

    But that’s a hell of a haul that CWS turned down if true. From the Red Sox they got one MLB ready hitter, one high-end pitcher who is at least a year+ away, plus two lottery tickets in a hitter and pitcher from 2016’s Sally League team. MLBpipeline has the CWS haul as their new #1, #2, #7 and #29 prospects. Moncada and Kopech both ranked ahead of CWS’s previous #1 prospect Carson Fulmer.

    Had they really been offered Giolito, Lopez and Robles that’d be Washington’s current #1,#2 and #3, ALL of whom would be ranked higher than Fulmer. Hard to believe CWS turned down that offer in lieu of getting Moncada/Kopech +2 lottery tickets.

    but who knows. its all rumors and unproven stuff right?

    Todd Boss

    7 Dec 16 at 11:16 am

  55. Rizzo deserves all the credit in the world for Murphy. Zobrist was an excellent pickup for the Cubs; Phillips might have been helpful. That Murphy turned out to be better than all is good fortune, but it was Rizzo who pulled the trigger, and late in December when all other teams had passed. He committed more years than he needed to with Phillips, and more coin.

    But the decision was further vindicated by Taylor’s stalling and Turner moving away from being a second base option.

    Fielder was injured. But on that point I agree – the Nats have been burned on the contract for Zimm (hopefully not Stras), and were ready to pay big coin and many years to Fielder, Heyward, Upton – as well as Zobrist and Cespedes. History will bear out that these many year contracts are a big mistake when you have a far more affordable and high volume developmental pipeline. That is why I think the Nats bringing 19(!!!) players in on the international market this year will ultimately pay dividends in this kind of decision-making.

    An organization like the Nats should only be signing the truly best and best conditioned players to long year deals, because the replacements should never be more than a couple of years away. Our organization is not there yet, but organizations like the Cubs and Red Sox are, with quality depth from signing aggressively on the international market and with good scouting.


    7 Dec 16 at 11:19 am

  56. Desmond to Rockies. Blackmon or Cargo to Nats?


    7 Dec 16 at 11:21 am

  57. Moncada had a 30.9% K rate at AA. For comparison, MAT’s AA K rate was 29.5%. Ignore that 60-foot red flag at your own risk. (Robles’ K rate is in the teens.) Kopech seems like an HRod comp. I just don’t get the excitement over the “monster” prospect package. There’s little certainty that any of them except Moncada will even reach the majors.

    Whatever. Yeah, I’ll take the Giolito/Lopez/Robles package over that crew any day and not look back. Remind me of this statement if Moncada becomes a superstar, but with that lack of contact, I sincerely doubt he will.

    In the meantime, I’ll add this non-trade into the pile of Rizzo getting “lucky” that he didn’t surrender Giolito/Lopez/Robles. I know Sale is “elite,” but the actual win-quantifiable improvement he would bring to a 95-win rotation would be minimal.


    7 Dec 16 at 11:26 am

  58. No interest in CarGo; in Blackmon, yes, but I suspect he’ll be overpriced coming off a career year. Desi may just replace Parra in LF, though. (Nat non-deal for Parra a couple of years ago another bit of “luck.”)


    7 Dec 16 at 11:28 am

  59. Wouldn’t mind either Blackmon or Cargo honestly; both could slot into Nats OF. I’d want to pay less for Cargo though; Cargo’s home/away splits are really concerning though (away from Coors he’s sub 800 OPS) wwhile Blackmon’s are consistently awesome either way.

    Todd Boss

    7 Dec 16 at 11:31 am

  60. Yeah, cargo on a rental no go. Dahl would be more attractive, especially if we are dealing young pitching.


    7 Dec 16 at 11:32 am

  61. Wow 5yrs/$70M for Desmond?? that is way, way more than I thought he’d get. Bravo for him.

    Todd Boss

    7 Dec 16 at 11:33 am

  62. Yeah, good for Desi, but that’s an insane contract. His second-half splits were .237/.283/.347. It’s going to take an awful lot of mile-high air to inflate those numbers for five years.


    7 Dec 16 at 11:41 am

  63. Don’t forget that the Rockies also surrender the friggin’ #11 draft pick for Desi.


    7 Dec 16 at 11:44 am

  64. Man; what the F are Colorado thinking?? No offense to Desmond, but giving up #11 pick for Desmond AND giving him $70M guaranteed seems like a foolish contract.

    Todd Boss

    7 Dec 16 at 11:49 am

  65. It’s hard to overstate how great Murphy was this year. Even at his previous levels with the Mets he’s the kind of hitter everyone needs.

    In this age of 4 different relievers pithing an inning each, it’s important to have a guy like him with the ability to time the ball rather than the pitcher.

    While some other players take two or three ab’s to try to time a pitcher, Murphy does it in 1 or 2 pitches.

    He hits good pitchers and bad. Consistent rather than streaky, Hits off a layoff and is clutch. Was just amazing to watch on a day to day basis.

    Not being streaky is huge. Who else out there is similar to him?

    (other than Max Schrock of course) ha ha

    Marty C

    7 Dec 16 at 11:56 am

  66. Marty, I was just looking at Blackmon’s stats, and he sure reminds me of someone who has figured something out mid-career, a la Murph. He also has a good contact rate. Blackmon’s LH bat isn’t the best “need” fit, but everything else looks good.


    7 Dec 16 at 12:01 pm


    Great, another option potentially off the table … and the rich getting richer.

    Todd Boss

    7 Dec 16 at 12:26 pm

  68. Yeah Blackmon in the little I saw him live against us, I was thinking I’m glad he’s not in our division. Would love to get that guy even if it costs us something uncomfortable.

    Not to harp on Schrock but trading what looked like our most consistent prospect bat for middling junk like Repzinski was ridiculous in hindsight.
    Did Scrabble have an impact for us at all? Using Schrock or Rivero to trade in a package for someone like multi years of Blackmon or Sale would make sense. But for a 2 month rental that wasn’t even impactful is negligence.

    I’m not a fan of any of these rental trades. I would exhaust any and all internal options before doing that again. Our system is quite a bit weaker now without Rivero and Schrock, and we have nothing to show for it other than an NL East title we probably would have won anyway.

    Marty C

    7 Dec 16 at 12:27 pm

  69. Marty C. – I am in agreement with you on Blackmon and on Schrock. But Rivero I do not mind to this day. I just don’t think he would have made it here.

    I value our prospects highly and would reserve overpays only for Nats killers and superstars. Murphy was such a player once, and there are others (Freeman).


    7 Dec 16 at 12:33 pm

  70. Fedde has a lot of experience pitching at altitude from college. If the Rockies were smart, he’d be a guy they’d target. But if the Rockies were smart, they wouldn’t have given that contract to Desmond . . .


    7 Dec 16 at 12:46 pm

  71. For all of you guys who keep whining about the Schrock/Rzepczynski trade … What would you have done instead?

    The team needed another lefty reliever. The trade deadline had passed. Rivero was gone, Solis was hurt, Perez was ineffective. Harper was hurt, Grace apparently wasn’t rated well enough to call up. So they needed to buy a lefty reliever. … one who had passed through waivers and could be freely acquired. Not exactly a big list.

    I mean, yes I would have liked to have kept the prospect and not wasted him on a 5 week rental. but to say that Rzepczynski was useless for us is just wrong (1.54 ERA, 279 ERA+ in his 11.2 innings). And clearly there was a need.

    What was your genius solutions to the Nats bullpen problem that would have enabled the team to keep the prospect?

    Todd Boss

    7 Dec 16 at 12:51 pm

  72. Soler is a significant price to pay for one year of a closer, but the Cubs had it to give. But they’ll have to be shopping again next year . . .


    7 Dec 16 at 12:51 pm

  73. From Dave Cameron’s chat: “I do think there’s probably more chance than people are willing to admit that Moncada turns into the early career B.J. Upton.”

    This over Robles/Giolito/Lopez? Good luck with that!


    7 Dec 16 at 1:31 pm

  74. Have also read concerns about Moncada’s approach and K/rate over the years. Perhaps good to keep in mind that the White Sox F.O. may be bottom 3 in the league and could have just bungled the options presented to them..

    Todd Boss

    7 Dec 16 at 1:34 pm

  75. Cameron saying Giolito plus stuff (not Robles or Lopez) for Cutch. But he also said he thinks Giolito is overrated. (But don’t tell Marty.)


    7 Dec 16 at 1:41 pm

  76. You just said it Todd…. 11.2 innings. Probably over half of those innings in games we were going to win anyway, and some of those innings in games we lost. Even if Grace had given up a few more runs than Scrabble, those few runs in the middle of a game over a total of 11 innings is just not important enough to ditch valuable long term prospects.

    And for Schrock in particular… I’m combing the minor league box scores every day in search of someone in our system who looks like a good CONSISTENT hitter. Not a streaky guy, but a guy who looks like he actually has bat skills that play day after day. Schrock was one of only very very few we had no matter the level or power profile The kind of guy you want up with a guy on third and one out against a tough pitcher.

    Fore… Rivero I agree was not my favorite but his raw talent in a reliever market this overheated is still valuable. And certainly a major leaguer. And he is streaky very good, like early in the season before Dusty burned him out. Melancon was certainly loads more valuable than Scrabble, but it still seems kind of empty now that Melancons gone for nothing back. And us wishing we had a couple more valuable high talent but not integral pieces to trade for real long term value like a Blackmon, Eaton, Davis etc…

    Marty C

    7 Dec 16 at 1:47 pm

  77. I think the White Sox wanted a premium position player as part of the return for Sale. The Nats could offer multiple premium pitching prospects (and they did), but my guess is that Chicago believes pitching prospects are too risky (which is true), and they needed to come out of the Sale deal with a quality everyday player. Moncada is a more valuable commodity than Robles despite Moncada’s contact issues because he’s on the cusp of the big leagues and Robles is 19 in A ball. A lot still has to go right for Robles to be a contributor in the major leagues. The same is not true for Moncada. This is the major reason I think the Nats (and a lot of Nats fans) are overvaluing Robles.


    7 Dec 16 at 1:48 pm

  78. I’m stunned by that Desi contract. happy for him, but also think it seems odd from the rockies standpoint. There has to be a trade coming.

    I think Moncada is a stud, even with that contact rate. He absolutely crushes the ball when he does make contact, and I think he’ll improve in that area. Also, Kopech could be the real deal. He has every flag that all high velo pitchers do, but also a higher ceiling than most. No, I think the Bosox package was stronger.

    Blackmon, Cargo – meh, whatever. I won’t hate either one, but I am also ok without them. I enjoyed last year’s team more than any other, so the same team without Ramos and MM is less, but still pretty good and I still think harper will improve and even Zim. So I am fine with a few low key moves for depth, and keep all the good prospects.

    Soler was a strong return for Davis. I wouldn’t have wanted us to beat that package. Thornburg is still just that I would have liked to see Rizzo get on the terms that they were dealt.


    7 Dec 16 at 1:49 pm

  79. Over-under 100 MLB at bats for Schrock? Put me down for the under.


    7 Dec 16 at 1:50 pm

  80. Answer my question; if you keep whining about the trade, what would you have done instead?

    Anyone can complain about a problem that is evident. Offer an alternative solution.

    Todd Boss

    7 Dec 16 at 1:51 pm

  81. BJ Upton had 21 WAR during his Tampa years. If that’s Moncada’s floor, that’s a hell of a high floor.


    7 Dec 16 at 1:54 pm

  82. Todd Boss

    7 Dec 16 at 2:01 pm

  83. No matter what Moncada does, the Chisox are still gonna suck.

    Derek, I would be tempted to take the under if the A’s weren’t so desperate. For a good comp, Renda got 60 ABs with the gosh-awful Reds . . . then got DFA’d.


    7 Dec 16 at 2:03 pm

  84. #Rays, #Nationals have discussed closer Alex Colome in trade talks, sources say. @MLB @MLBNetwork

    Todd Boss

    7 Dec 16 at 2:18 pm

  85. Colome is pre-arb, controlled for four more years.


    7 Dec 16 at 2:24 pm

  86. I think the need for Scrabble was exaggerated and panicked, and based on presumptions that righties cannot get lefties out.

    We could have gone with righthanders who would have been sufficiently effective against lefthanded batters.


    7 Dec 16 at 2:38 pm

  87. No one is whining. We are just disagreeing.

    I am very supportive and appreciative of Rizzo’s legacy. Just not universally, and keeping my opinion more even-handed.


    7 Dec 16 at 2:40 pm

  88. I forgot that Wade Davis went on the DL twice last year with elbow issues. Perhaps there’s chink in the almighty Cub armor now.


    7 Dec 16 at 2:43 pm

  89. Dusty says Nats want Stephen Drew back.


    7 Dec 16 at 2:44 pm

  90. I want Drew back too.

    Ok, with Desi in COL, here’s what we do: Ross + Giolito for Dahl. There’s our CF for 2017-208, and RF for 2019-2023. Big cost, but Dahl is a stud and will pair with Turner and Robles in the next wave, and pitching, we got.


    7 Dec 16 at 3:00 pm

  91. What about Mike Rizzo’s tenure here since 2009 implies that he ever gets “exaggerated and panicked?” Havn’t we all extolled his patience and control in these trade negotiations lately, walking away when the price gets too high instead of making a panicked purchase?

    Look. I like prospects, i follow prospects. As a result I tend to think naturally that they’re worth more than they are. But we cannot forget that these guys are just that; prospects. There’s no guarantee they’ll ever matriculate to the majors, let alone contribute heavily. We generally are trading prospects for guys who are ALREADY in the majors. You have to spend money to make money … and you have to spend prospects to acquire players.

    Todd Boss

    7 Dec 16 at 3:47 pm

  92. Must be big: i just got a MLB notification about Nats acquiring Adam Eaton. now THAT’s a f*cking center fielder!

    Todd Boss

    7 Dec 16 at 4:42 pm

  93. Nationals Close To Acquiring Adam Eaton

    By Steve Adams | December 7, 2016 at 3:41pm CDT

    3:41pm: Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports tweets that the Nats are close to getting Eaton from the White Sox. Top outfield prospect Victor Robles is not in the deal, he adds.

    I’ll bet Giolito is in this deal


    7 Dec 16 at 4:55 pm

  94. Todd… 11.2 innings and many of them not the highest leverage was not worth trading anybody of value for. And for someone of that low usage, I would have traded a bushel of our other high athletic talent but low production types if I was forced to trade. Otherwise we’re stuck with nothing but our usual streaky High k rate hitting prospects, that look very nice and athletic but go days at a time without a hit.

    You have to understand that Schrock was filling up the box score on a daily basis.

    Marty C

    7 Dec 16 at 4:55 pm

  95. Latest on Eaton deal says Giolito, Lopez, and Dunning. That’s a BIG price, but it’s for five years of control. Still trying to process. I’m sure Wally is happy, as Eaton has been his guy all along. And Marty won’t have Giolito to kick around anymore . . .


    7 Dec 16 at 5:37 pm

  96. Wow. Well, you already know how I feel about this. The Sox have parlayed Chris Sale and Adam Eaton into some kind of farm system, that’s for sure.

    And I suppose the Nats are better off with affordable Eaton through ’21 than two years of McCutchen.


    The good news is that the organization still has upper minors pitching depth. let’s see what is planned for Colome. But I’m a bit queasy over losing both Giolito and Lopez.


    7 Dec 16 at 5:39 pm

  97. At least the big talent payout is going for an area of need, rather than for a pitcher. It seems like Rizzo was trying to have his cake and eat it too by trying to keep enough back from the Sale deal to get Cutch as well, but neither team was buying.

    Seems like Robles is staying. I assume Danny will be going, Gio probably staying.


    7 Dec 16 at 5:43 pm

  98. Hey Trea, you can put up that OF glove now. Start taking those grounders!


    7 Dec 16 at 5:45 pm

  99. Yes, I’m a fan of Eaton, but this price seems nuts. Dunning too?

    Eaton fits perfectly, now and in the future, but I don’t know if I like him at this price. Sheesh, I’m not cut out for these kinds of trades


    7 Dec 16 at 6:14 pm

  100. There is another way of looking at it. Rizzo sells high. If Giolito’s and Lopez’ value is cresting at top-10, top-40, then we may feel differently a year from now.

    As for Dunning, he is a 1st rd pick but I am quite satisfied with the SP depth at the lower minors. He was more replaceable than Glover, Stevenson, Ward, Tyler Watson, or certainly Severino.

    I wonder if they go all in on Chapman now that they have such a team friendly contract in Eaton?


    7 Dec 16 at 6:38 pm

  101. Still trying to process it all. I still have some fears that Robles will be leaving for Colome. And here I almost posted that it was a boring day compared to yesterday rumor-wise.

    I love that Eaton extends the “window.” I wasn’t keen on another two-year mortgage on the future. But those sure were some future arms that got mortgaged in the process. In the end, you have to hope/trust that your team evaluates its own talent better than others do. It seems that they’ve placed a lot of faith in Fedde. I would say in Voth as well, but that’s hard to support since they bypassed him to bring up Giolito, Lopez, and Cole.

    If only Giolito makes it as a starter, and perhaps not even a dominant one (Marty), this is a great deal. If that trio (and Kopech) turn into a lethal rotation, we may look on with some envy. I think we’ll be plenty entertained, though, with the Trea-Eaton relay team at the top of the order.

    And I’ll beat Todd to this: the OF would be stronger with Bryce in CF and Eaton in RF.


    7 Dec 16 at 7:09 pm

  102. New posted on it to argue/react there.

    Todd Boss

    7 Dec 16 at 7:53 pm

  103. This is an overpay with a delayed reaction. As Lopez is the only one we’ll even notice was gone from our team for the next year at least.

    But the bad guy in this is the whole organization that depressed Giolito’s value from Roger Clemens level to a trade throw in. Somebody on the inside should have known better than to call him up when he wasn’t ready or at least wasn’t ready at the time to display #1 type tools and talent. A year ago we could have traded him for a few Adam Eatons. That’s some criminal asset management.

    Eaton is a very nice piece though. He’s improved as a hitter at the big league level to exponentially increase his value, which is something a guy like Goodwin might also do now if he ever gets a chance.

    Marty C

    7 Dec 16 at 8:11 pm

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