Brocail Off the Market

Rumor has it that Doug Brocail has signed a contract with the Astros, which will be announced on Tuesday.

Oh, that’s right … we really don’t care.

In other news, Kerry Wood signed a one-year deal to remain with the Cubs; the presumption is that he’ll be a candidate to close, with Ryan Dempster moving back to the starting rotation. Though it might have been nice to see a pitcher with Wood’s talent on the Mets, there didn’t appear to be any interest whatsoever out of Flushing, and Wood seemed determined to return to Chi-town. That said, the Wood signing is something of a positive for the Mets, in that the Cubs now likely won’t be going after any other middle relievers on the market that might interest the Mets (i.e., Octavio Dotel, David Riske).

The latest “buzz” is that the Yankees and Twins are working on a deal involving Johan Santana. My assumption is that the Yanks would have to part with at least Philip Hughes, Ian Kennedy, and Melky Cabrera — and some pundits are guessing that Robinson Cano could be part of the package. If I’m Brian Cashman, that deal is a no-brainer — Hughes doesn’t look like the #1 ace everyone hyped him to be, and the ceilings of both he and Kennedy are questionable. Such a trade would be somewhat similar to another Twins deal that sent a Cy Young lefty to New York about twenty years ago — the Frank Viola trade to the Mets.

On July 31, 1989, the Twins sent Viola to Flushing in return for Rick Aguilera, David West, Tim Drummond, Kevin Tapani, and Jack Savage (Savage was actually a PTBNL). Back then, West was about as bright a prospect, if not brighter, than Hughes is today. Similarly, Tapani was comparable to Kennedy, and Aguilera was seen as a guy who was probably good enough to be a fourth or fifth starter on any team in MLB other than the Mets, who at the time had a 5-man rotation of Dwight Gooden, David Cone, Bobby Ojeda, Ron Darling, and Sid Fernandez (wow … those were good days for pitching in Shea!). Though the Mets toyed with Aguilera as a closer, he wasn’t supplanting 26-year-old fireballer Randy Myers anytime soon, and thus was expendable. The rest is history — Viola was 38-32 in two and a half seasons as a Met, Aguilera went on to become one of the AL’s most dominant closers and save 311 games, Tapani had a 13-year career as a solid #2 / #3 starter, and David West accomplished what can be most accurately described as “bupkis“.

I digress …

So if the Yankees do in fact pull off the deal, the Twins would suddenly have an excess of young starting pitching, which could help the Mets (can you say, Matt Garza for Lastings Milledge?). Additionally, I’d imagine that if Melky Cabrera goes north, then Andruw Jones becomes a Yankee almost immediately — does anyone else fit quite so perfectly in centerfield for them with Melky gone?

Further, if the Yanks and Twins do not come to terms, you’d have to think that either the Red Sox or the Mets are next on the waiting list. Are the Mets willing to send Mike Pelfrey, Philip Humber, Lastings Milledge, and a fourth prospect to Minnesota for Santana? I sure hope so. Problem is, I’d guess the Twins would also ask for John Maine or Oliver Perez, and/or Aaron Heilman. Unless they’re willing to add Joe Nathan and one of their young arms to the deal (Garza? Scott Baker?), I’d have to pass.

By the way, and speaking of Yankees, I haven’t heard anything on Luis Vizcaino. Wouldn’t he be a nice arm to add to the bullpen? Yes, I realize he’s been “Torre-ized”, but he might be related to Gumby and have no problem throwing another 80 games in 2008.

Completely off topic, Chris Snelling has been traded to the Philadelphia Phillies. I believe this is the 18th time he’s changed teams in the last ten months, and wonder why the Mets have been left out of the fun? I hope Omar hasn’t been banished from the “in” group.

Joe Janish began MetsToday in 2005 to provide the unique perspective of a high-level player and coach -- he earned NCAA D-1 All-American honors as a catcher and coached several players who went on to play pro ball. As a result his posts often include mechanical evaluations, scout-like analysis, and opinions that go beyond the numbers. Follow Joe's baseball tips on Twitter at @onbaseball and at the On Baseball Google Plus page.
  1. whatdatmean November 27, 2007 at 8:03 am
    If the Yanks want him, they can and will have him. I doubt that the Yanks will trade their starting CF, 2B, and 2 SP (+) for 1 guy. They are typically smarter, although, they could turn around and sign Jones and Eckstein or something like that. If they dont want to give up 2 of their potential starters for the year, they may pull out, or go after someone cheaper.
    If the Mets want to be a part of this discussion, we could send LMilz/Gomez, Ollie, Gotay, +1 humber/muniz/kunz…
    Including Ollie does create another hole, and i do love him, but to get Santana, you’d have to think about it. We get to keep 1 OF and Heilman, so we lose, but nothing key to the team. Minny gets a young ace, the CF + IF they need, and a prospect. Depending on the package, high ceiling guys like Pelf, Gomez, Mulvey, Guerra, F-mart, Rustich… should be left out, or included to a lesser extent.
    No 1 Player is worth selling the farm. It may look good for the year, until the next hole opens, and we have prospects to trade or to step in.
    We shall see what happens. Im more of a Bedard fan, but Ill take anything! Ive been scarred by the likes of Lima, Lawrence, Park… do think Darling can make a comeback?
  2. isuzudude November 28, 2007 at 9:26 am
    I think it’s safe to say that the Yankees can acquire Santana without having to give up any of their top 4 young stars, being Cano, Wang, Kennedy, and Joba. On almost any other team, Hughes would be the top star, but somehow the Yankees have amassed a tremendous young core and can very much afford to part with him, along with Melky and a couple lower-level prospects in the single-A range. If the rumors are true that the Yankees can get a deal done for Johan giving up that package, I have to imagine they are the clear cut frontrunners. They can also lock up Johan to an extension, as money is no object to them and gives them the ace they’ve been lacking since Clemens left for Houston after 2003, and also covers them in case Pettitte decides to retire or go to the Dodgers. I could very much see them then signing an Aaron Rowand or Andruw Jones to play CF, which would be a great pick-up for them as both play stellar defense (something they desperately need in an OF comprised of Damon, Abreu, and Matsui) and gives them a right handed stick in the lineup amongst a multitude of lefties. At this point, if the Twins are certain to pull the trigger on a Johan trade, I have to rank the Yankees chances of getting him at close to 90%, with the Red Sox, Angels, and Dodgers next in line and the Mets a distant fifth because of how unimpressive our prospects are (unless instead of Pelfrey and Humber the Mets offer Maine along with Gomez and Mulvey). I still have faith in Omar, but I think we need to start preparing for a future of no Johan.

    I’m also of th mentality that the Twins have to be REALLY high on Gomez to take him for one of the Garza/Baker/Slowey trio. I mean, if a team really is rebuilding, they have to know how important good, young, cheap pitching is compared to a questionable outfielder who has yet to develop power. Especially when there are so many other OF prospects from around baseball that would be more worthy of giving up one of those pitchers for (Matt Kemp, Carlos Quentin, Franklin Gutierrez, Ryan Raburn just to name a few).

  3. isuzudude November 28, 2007 at 10:19 am
    Question: What’s the preferred option?

    1. Signing Carlos Silva to a 4 yr, $48-mil contract, or
    2. Trading Milledge/Humber to A’s for Blanton

  4. skibolton November 28, 2007 at 10:20 am
    Personally, I’d take Silva and keep the prospects.
  5. joe November 28, 2007 at 12:04 pm
    Agreed – Silva. Then trade Milledge for another arm if possible … I stand firm that the Mets need to add more than one pitcher to the staff.
  6. Micalpalyn November 28, 2007 at 1:47 pm
    My post was eaten by the cyber-pacman too.

    Anyway in Summary.

    I’m shying away from Santana. The Viola deal recollection has soured me greatly. For me any deal is Milz, Fmart OR Gomez/ +Humby OR Pelfrey.
    Throw in one or two lower level pieces (Muniz).

    2. Isu: A deal with Minn makes sense. They lost Torii and now feature Jason Tyner in the OF. The Mets have 3 premium young OF talents,, they have arms. I for one can see Millz eventually having a career along the lines of Hunter or Jermaine Dye. Minn also covets speed and i think that might be the lure that has them looking at Gomez more.

    I’m on the Silva sauce.

  7. isuzudude November 28, 2007 at 2:36 pm
    Mic, I never said a deal with Minnesota never made sense. Conversely, a deal for them makes a ton of sense as they need to replace Hunter in the OF and would be wise to deal Santana since they have no shot of resigning him. However, I am of the belief that, of all the teams being mentioned as candidates to land Johan, the Mets have the least impressive prospects to offer. Furthermore, I don’t think Minnesota will trade any of their pitching prospects unless they get back an OF who is a great bet to be a bonafide stud, of which I don’t think Gomez is. And whereas you see Milledge as a future Hunter or Dye, they may see him as a future Victor Diaz. Who knows. Perhaps the best way to pry away a Kevin Slowey (my personal favorite of the Twins trio) or Matt Garza is to offer Gomez AND either Pelfrey or Humber. If you’re Omar, do you take two of your biggest trading chips and give them away for one pitcher who hasn’t himself been established at the major league level? Tough questions…

    Silva 3, Blanton 0. I guess I would have to agree. Blanton’s younger (albeit only by a year), has better K numbers, and will likely be less expensive, at least for the short-term. But Oakland’s asking price always seems to be high, so it’s probably safer to go with just-as-proven a commodity as Silva without giving up anything we can use to get a REAL big-time starter.

  8. whatdatmean November 28, 2007 at 3:50 pm
    I have read, and am encouraged that 3 GM’s/Assistants [A’s, Baltimore, + Minny] have said they like our farm system. It makes it sound like something can get done.
    i dont know about the Pitts GM,but Im curious to see the price for Snell or Gorzellany. They may be interested in swinging a trade with us. Not sure what their status in CF is[that guy last year might get DFA’s according to MLBTR]. Rumor has it that they like Pelf and Humber.
    Those 2 guys would be studs in our rotation. Maybe a package of Lmilz/Gomez, Pelf/humber, + gotay would do it? possibly even bring back a RP?
    Ive seen the rumors, but he is one GM we havent heard much from yet.

    I love Slowey too, but Garza is a nasty power pitcher that would be nice.
    We may be able to get Blanton for LMilz + AA, which is nice. And next year, we look to sign someone. That may be our best option.

    I still feel that most of Gomez, F-Mart, Mulvey, Guerra, + Rustich should be protected because they look like they are going to be legit for ’09. They all have that raw talent/athleticism component, and according to scout, are very hard workers that can/will excel at all pro levels. Humber, Pelf, LMilz, Gotay, and, to a lesser extent, Heilman, have all been exposed in one way or another, and the Mets seem reluctant to use them as anything other than trade bait.

    Here’s a question…in an interview[i saw on a blog], an A’s assistant said that
    haren has the highest price [3-4 good prospect, followed by blanton [2-3 prospects], then Harden [possibly 1]. Since the Mets have a good rotation already, YES, i did say good [most teams would be happy with pedro,maine, OP, duque, and Pelf/humber/vargas.
    ???Should we roll the dice on Harden, possibly + a RP, for Lmilz? WHEN healthy, he is as good of a #1 out there. Im almost tempted to say yes, as long as we have the foresight to also sign colon or chacone, or trade for Lee or a backend SP.
    Harden, Pedro, Maine, OP, El Duque, still having lee/colon/chacone, humber, pelf, vargas, + bostick if/when someone gets hurt. But thats nasty!!!!!!!!!!!

    -or-

    ????Should we take a different gamble, and trade a few low value prospects to the Cubs for Mark Prior, then turn to the A’s and trade for Blanton with LMilz + AA. yes, it will empty out the low end prospects, but we do get a #1, if he’s healthy, in prior, and a solid #3 in blanton.
    I would be happy with a rotation of
    Prior, Pedro, Maine, Blanton, OP with Duque, Pelf, Humber, Vargas, + bostick in case someone gets hurt in BP/AAA
    and we still have Heilman, gomez and the rest…

    any ideas?

  9. isuzudude November 28, 2007 at 5:03 pm
    Having a rotation of Pedro/Duque/Harden or Pedro/Duque/Prior is real dangerous because none are locks to throw over 150 innings in 2008. That means a whole lot more stress gets burdened on the bullpen, and a lot more starts gets reluctantly handed to Pelfrey, Humber, and journeymen triple-A starters. The rotations you come up with look nasty on paper, but the realism of them all staying healthy long enough to be successful is asking a whole lot…especially considering you’d have to give up at least one big prospect to get either Prior or Harden. I’d pass on those two and stick to the plan of signing Silva and seeing what else we can get on the trading block without having to give up our entire future.