Saturday, January 20, 2007

Laroche & Stuff

27 year old left-hand hitting first basemen who go for .285-32-90 don't get traded around too often, especially not TO the Pirates. They also aren't very cheap, as the Pirates gave up lefty close Mike Gonzalez and infield prospect Brent Lillibridge to get Laroche. A closer look at what the Pirates gave away to get Laroche:

Gonzalez has pretty gaudy number, not going over 2.70 in the last 3 years, having over a 2:1 strikeout to walk ratio, and being 24 for 24 in save opportunities last year. The key to me is that he didn't blow a save and still only got 24. The Pirates need to get leads before they worry about someone to protect them in the 9th inning.

Lillibridge, a 24 year old shortstop and former collegiate star at the University of Washington, hit .313-2-28 for high class A Lynchburg after being promoted from class A Hickory after going for .299-11-43. Didn't hit for much power in college when he was swinging aluminum, so I doubt he'll ever be much of a major league power threat, Lillibridge's biggest assest seems to be his speed, as he stole 54 bases last year. Mlbtraderumors.com said that "Baseball Prospectus's PECOTA system indicates that the college product would be baseball's ninth best shortstop in 2007." Huh? Yet he'll probably be in AA. Someone is missing the boat on this guy...I just don't know who. The biggest question I have is, what is the metal in his mouth? If it is braces, good trade. If it is a pimped out grill, bad, bad trade.
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I like the Laroche deal for the Pirates, but it could prove costly for the Phillies. The NL East has two lefty closers now, The Rat and Gonzalez. And with Utley and Howard forming the formidable part of the Phillies lineup, the matchups aren't exactly favorable.
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The Pirates resigned Shawn Chacon. He's an absolute train-wreck of a pitcher and the Buccos wouldn't have it any other way.
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It's bad enough that our first baseman is now an ex-Brave, but one of my favorite Bucco's will now be playing in Atlanta after Craig Wilson signed a 1 year $2 million deal.

Wilson was traded by the Blue Jays, along with Abraham Nunez, to the Pirates in a multi-player deal including notables Dan Plesac and Orlando Merced. Wilson and his mullet were solid in the 7 years he spent with the big club. Although he never hit higher than .267 (except for his rookie year) and was second in the league in K's in '04, he provided some power, some clutch hitting, and versatility. He also was the league leader in HBP twice. Unfortunately, the Bucco management never really liked him, and for the most part got screwed out of playing time, as the Pirates opted for the likes of Jer0-4my Burnitz, Matt Lawton, and Randall Simon...
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The Indians signed Trot Nixon for one year and $3 million. Pretty cheap, I think. I would not have minded seeing something like this go down: trade Rowand for bullpen depth, make Victorino the starting CF, sign Nixon and Wilson to platoon in RF, make Wison primary RH pinch-hitter when not in RF and the 3rd string catcher (making the signing of Barajas unnecessary.) This would have saved money and added pitching & power. This is why we should be GM's.....

Corey

15 comments:

GM-Carson said...

The last line of this post sums it up best "this is why we should be GM's"...A-freakin-men brotha! Pass me the checkbook and the keys to my office and I'll lead both organizations to victory.

Corey said...

this just in: Baseball Prospectus's PECOTA system has projected me to be the 14th best pitcher in the NY-Penn league.

Awesome! Now all I have to do is quit my job, get labrum surgery, hire an agent, and get signed by an organization that has a team in the NY-Penn league and convince them to assign me to that team.

I love projections!!!

GM-Carson said...

Projections are annoying. I project that Jon Lieber will still be fat come spring training. I project Pat Burrell will continue to gaze at 3rd strikes. I project that Ryan Howard will hit a gazillion homers...and so on, and so on, and so on. Wow, that was tough work, I need a rest from all that mental stimulation.

BloodStripes said...

I project that your projections may well be right.

chuckm said...

Corey- I am %100 with the Vic in CF, platoon in RF, and move Rowand for a BP arm you propose. Looks to me like the Phillies are looking at less production from the CF position in 2007 (a full year of Rowand), less from RF (unless Vic really breaks out *and* learns how to swipe bags), less from catcher (If frigging Barajas is the starter), and less from 1B (no Howard dis, but he will be getting the Bonds treatment and will have much more 1 bag BBs and less 4 bag HRs). It really only looks like 3B will have increased production, that, and if Burrell somehow stops worrying about his 'nads and makes contact on some of the dozens of called third strikes he takes. Seriously, if he could convert even 15 hits out of the 66 called 3rd Ks he saw in 2006, he would be a .280/.400/.950 batter. Looks to me like we have to bank on the rotation staying healthy this season and that the increased pitching offsets the decreased batting.

BenJah said...

i project that i will keep shaking my head in disgust with regard to carson's man-love for trot nixon

however, i do wish that wilson had become a phucco this offseason

as for bloodstripes' questions about what items with philly logos cannot be bought, i just hope a world championship ring isn't one of them

Bob D said...

Corey, too bad that you came in 14th, the team will only carry 12 pitchers max this year. Start eating donuts and maybe you can catch up to Lieber

das411 said...

There is still another Wilson available to play RF...

Corey said...

mookie wilson?

bob d - 14 in the league, not on the team. i'm making the squad...

GM-Carson said...

Das411- c'mon bro, would you really want Preston Wilson in RF next year? I like Victorinio a lot, I like him more in CF, but he's stuck in RF because Mr. Fenceface is back for one more go. I don't dislike Rowand either, I just don't see how he's really all that good besides the fact that he plays with basketball sized cajones.

Benjah- Nixon man-love is merely because I think he'd have made an excellent addition to this team.

Corey- Mookie Wilson is the shiznit!

Bob D said...

Corey hopefully the other 13 are with the Phils.

Utley given 7 years $85 mil or $85,000,000.00 just what Corey should get paid for 14th best pitcher in the NL with a record of 22-3 1.69 ERA

BENTZ said...

Yup. Utley signed through 2013 and you don't worry about arbitration anymore. It's a lot of money, but it's $12-something million per year so that's not bad. Plus the market is going to continue to blow up, so you are saving money in the long run. Which means they will upgrade Howard's deal slightly now and he'll cash in next winter in all likelihood. The future is bright, my friends.

Los said...

The Pirates making a strategic move? I don't believe it.

Corey said...

i wipe my ass with 85 million dollars. i'm holding out for the big money...

if you are enjoying an adult beverage today, poor a little out for your boy vern ruhle. the former phillies pitching coach passed away today. when i get off of work today, i'm going to tip back a high life in honor of ol' vern. somewhere, st. peter is learning to throw a slider...

GM-Carson said...

Damn dude, Vern Ruhle died?! I was just on baseball-reference.com looking at him player page this morning...eerie.

I know that's a butt-load of money to hand over to Utley, but he's the best 2nd baseman in the game and it's good to know we'll have him in a Phils uniform for the foreseeable future.