The Los Angeles Dodgers need to calm down. After spending ludicrous amounts of money during the 2012 season to acquire Hanley Ramirez, Joe Blanton, Adrian Gonzalez, Carl Crawford and Josh Beckett among others, they have shown no signs of stopping in the offseason. Early on they signed middle reliever Brandon League to a 4-year/$27.5 million contract and spent a total of $61.7 on unproven Hyun-Jin Ryu. Then they signed what may prove to be one of the worst contracts in baseball history- Zack Greinke to a 6-year/$147 million deal.
Early Wednesday morning, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reported that the Cincinnati Reds had come to an agreement with Jonathan Broxton on a 3-year/$21 million contract. He says that “Broxton is expected to be the Reds closer, enabling them to move the 100-mph-throwing Aroldis Chapman to the starting rotation.
Chapman had a 1.51 ERA, 38 saves and 122 strikeouts in 71.2 innings. The Reds are trying to fix something that isn’t broke. Keep Chapman as closer.
In 2001 Ichiro Suzuki took baseball by storm with a Rookie of the Year and MVP award. Since then, Major League franchises have taken to the far east for talent. Yu Darvish was the latest Japanese sensation, earning an All-Star berth and a third place ROY finish. While millions of dollars are spent on Japanese stars, rare is the player who actually produce at baseball’s highest level. Is it really worth it for teams to pursue them?
The Miami Marlins pulled off a shocker Tuesday night by trading away Jose Reyes, Mark Buehrle, Josh Johnson, John Buck and Emilio Bonifacio to the Toronto Blue Jays. The sheer magnitude of a trade this size almost makes you forget that the Marlins would have had to acquire players as well. But Yunel Escobar, Jeff Mathis and four prospects are a small consolation prize for realizing that the team is rebuilding. Again.
Despite all of the preaching about change and winning that came before 2012, the Miami Marlins will never be a perennial winner until Jeffrey Loria is no longer owner.
So two General Managers walk into a bar. One says to the other “I have a two-time All-Star who is 25 years old and a 21 year old Golden Spikes Award winner and I’m willing to trade them both.”
Pitcher A since 2008: 70-43, 3.39 ERA, 1035.2 IP, 1007 K, 1.195 WHIP, 3.86 K/BB
Pitcher B since 2008: 70-53, 3.54 ERA, 1095.1 IP, 979 K, 1.137 WHIP, 4.82 K/BB
All things equal, most people would take Pitcher A. But all things aren’t equal- Pitcher A may become the highest paid right handed pitcher of all time, while Pitcher B may be lucky to garner a two year deal. The difference in their contracts could very well be $100+ million for Pitcher A to $10 million for Pitcher B.
Now who do you want?
Every now and then, baseball is gifted with truly intelligent individuals. Among recent ones, Pat Gillick, Billy Beane, Tony LaRusa, Bruce Bochy. Recognition is deservedly given to them, whether it be with Hall of Fame plaques, movie blockbusters, or World Series rings. The General Manager of the Tampa Bay Rays isn’t a household name, but make no mistake, Andrew Friedman is a genius.