Tag: jake peavy

Price for Dickey Just Went Up

UPDATE (11/23/2012) via ESPN.com:
In choosing to sign a one-year, $15 million contract with the New York Yankees, right-hander Hiroki Kuroda declined other teams’ offers of more money and years, a source with knowledge of the negotiations told ESPNNewYork.com Wednesday.

In case you missed it, the Yankees just re-signed Hiroki Kuroda to a one-year, $15M contract that includes another $1M in incentives. How does this affect R.A. Dickey’s contract extension negotiations with the Mets? Well, the answer is, how does it not?


Mets Sign Ken Takahashi

Finally, the Mets have found a LOOGY to help Pedro Feliciano shoulder the load — they’ve signed the recently released Ken Takahashi.

OK, in reality, there’s little if any chance of Takahashi going north. Most likely, he joins what may be an all-lefty bullpen in Buffalo, hanging in the bullpen with the likes of Casey Fossum, Adam Bostick, Jon Switzer, and Heriberto Ruelas.

On the one hand, if he does eventually get promoted to the big club, he could have a stint of success, based on the fact that no one has seen him before. In a LOOGY role, that stint could be spread out for a couple months. On the other hand, Takahashi is my age, meaning he’s too damn old to be an MLB rookie (though I’d love to put him on my Sunday league roster).

For a full analysis on Takahashi, including a video, see NPBTracker.

In related LOOGY news, the Dodgers signed Will Ohman on a minor league contract (for about a million less than the Mets guaranteed Tim Redding) and the Rangers released Jimmy Gobble.

Despite Ohman’s success against lefties over the past few seasons, the Mets were never interested.

Though Gobble has now been released twice this spring, neither of his previous employers face Chase Utley, Ryan Howard, and Raul Ibanez 19 times a year. I still believe this turkey is worth bringing aboard … certainly he’ll be more useful than Fernando Nieve or Elmer Dessens.

Speaking of … Dessens and Nieve are still in camp, while Nelson Figueroa is not? Where’s the logic in that? Figgy was one of the most impressive pitchers during the WBC, facing some of the best hitters in the world in a tournament that was taken very seriously by everyone other than the USA.

Put another way: Figgy fared better than Jake Peavy and Roy Oswalt in March, yet was given a ticket to triple-A so that room could be made for Elmer Friggin Dessens. Go figure.


Heilman Traded to Cubs

Aaron Heilman has been traded to the Cubs in exchange for Garrett Olson and Ronny Cedeno.

Well that was quick … guess I can cancel my order for a Seattle Mariners hat. I could have gotten away with that too — rooting for the M’s. I don’t know how I can root for the Cubs, though.

Interestingly, Heilman brought the Mariners a fairly accomplished, young, lefthanded starter and a potential starting shortstop or second baseman. Strange that the Mets had to add 22 people to him to get a 32-year-old reliever.

Now, the question is, will Heilman get his chance to win a starting rotation spot? The Cubs have Sean Marshall penciled in, but he was going to compete with the now-departed Olson. Would Lou Piniella give Heilman a shot to compete with Marshall? Or does he view Heilman as another setup guy to team with Kevin Gregg, Jeff Samardzija, and Chad Gaudin?

Or, will this acquisition lead to ANOTHER deal, possibly one that sends Jake Peavy from San Diego to Chicago? Should be interesting to follow.

In any case, Heilman looks now to be in a position to either make the Mets look really bad, or really smart, and to do it much too close to “home”.

By the way, at the annual Baseball Writers’ Association of America dinner last Sunday, Heilman took out this ad:

An Appreciation

Playing at Shea
before you folks
was an experience
I always will savor

Thank you for support

— Aaron Heilman

Congratulations to all award winners this evening

(Hat tip to ‘Ropolitans)

Classy. It’s going to be hard for me not to root for him as a Cub.


Javier Vazquez to Braves

Pending a physical, the Braves have acquired Javier Vazquez and Boone Logan from the White Sox in exchange for Brent Lillibridge, Tyler Flowers, Jon Gilmore, and Santos Rodriguez.

As isuzudude already commented, this deal likely takes Atlanta out of the running for Jake Peavy — though, the pieces the Padres want are still property of the Braves. If the Braves are willing to give up more from their abundance of near-ready prospects, plus Yunel Escobar, then a Peavy deal is still possible. But with Lillibridge gone, the only way I see the Braves dealing Escobar is if they either get Khalil Greene back or if they sign someone like Edgar Renteria or Orlando Cabrera.

Regardless, the Braves are in the market for at least another starting pitcher, and they have supposedly made an offer to A.J. Burnett. Both the Vazquez deal and the offer to Burnett give them leverage in the Peavy talks. Will be interesting to watch.

Is this a good deal for the Braves? It does look that way, particularly since Lillibridge’s stock plummeted after a disappointing 2008 season in AAA, and the other three prospects are relative no-names. However, the White Sox were desperate to dump Vazquez, and what they received in return was a talented, speedy middle infielder who will play in MLB next year and a young power-hitting catcher with enormous upside. After a monster performance in the Arizona Fall League, Flowers might see some action for the ChiSox before the end of ’09, and — if he continues his current course — could be a future All-Star caliber catcher.

Vazquez will do well in Atlanta, partially because he’s getting away from a manager who didn’t want him and partially because he’s going to a city that is ideal for his personality — low-key, low expectations, not much media coverage. He won’t be an ace but he’ll be a solid #2 or #3.

Don’t discount the acquisition of Boone Logan, a young LOOGY who has been getting pounded by AL hitters for the last three years. Logan is only 24 years old, has a live fastball, and is very tough on lefties. He has age on his side, and he’s improving. The control problem that plagued his first two years is becoming less of an issue, as his K:BB ratio improved dramatically from 2007 to 2008 (in ’08 he struck out 42 and walked 14 in 42 IP; in ’07 he went 35 K / 20 BB / 52 IP). I’m not saying Logan is the next Mike Gonzalez, but he should earn a spot in the Braves bullpen and be a significant contributor.

Interesting point: the Braves and White Sox are two teams that rarely make bad trades. Further, neither of them are done dealing this winter.


Peavy to Cubs?

The latest rumor has Jake Peavy going to the Cubs in a three-team deal that would also include the Baltimore Orioles.

According to Jeff Zrebiec and Peter Schmuck of the Baltimore Sun, the Orioles would send young pitcher Garrett Olson to San Diego and receive Cubs centerfielder Felix Pie as part of the deal. Strange, since the O’s already seem set for many years with Nick Markakis patrolling center, and they have Adam Jones, a natural centerfielder, playing in right. If nothing else, that outfield would have tremendous range.

How would such a trade affect the Mets? Let’s look at the Cubs potential starting rotation with Peavy:

1. Carlos Zambrano
2. Jake Peavy
3. Rich Harden
4. Ryan Dempster
5. Ted Lilly

Dempster and Lilly both won 17 games last year, and they’d be at the BACK END. Not to mention the surplus arms of Rich Hill, Jason Marquis, and Sean Marshall, who might or might not be part of the trade.

The Cubs 1-2-3 punch of Zambrano, Peavy, and Harden would be the strongest in all of MLB, and would stand up to best of all-time if Harden remained healthy. The NL Central would be locked up, and it would be next to impossible to beat them in a short series (i.e., playoffs).

So why does this matter to the Mets? Because the Mets have Johan Santana, Mike Pelfrey, and then three question marks comprising their starting rotation. We hope John Maine will return healthy, and we hope he’ll get back to the track that made him a 15-game winner in 2007. However, there’s no guarantee Maine will be healthy, and he took a step back in 2008 — which may or may not have had to do with the injury.

Enough beating around the bush — here’s my point. If the Cubs have three lights-out aces at the top of their rotation, that makes 3 lights-out aces the “standard requirement” for a postseason team. Which means if the Mets want to play “meaningful games deep into October”, they better re-think their position on C.C. Sabathia, A.J. Burnett, and maybe Ben Sheets. We saw what the Astros did to playoff teams with a top three of Roger Clemens, Roy Oswalt, and Andy Pettitte — if the Cubs can somehow land Peavy, they’d similarly rip through the competition like a chainsaw through warm butter.


Miller: Peavy Going to Braves

Jake Peavy is going to the Atlanta Braves, if he waives his no-trade clause, Scott Miller of CBS Sportsline reports.

Miller claims that the Braves are ready to send Yunel Escobar, Gorkys Hernandez, one of either Jo-Jo Reyes or Charlie Morton, and one of either Scott Locke or Blaine Boyer.

I’m still not seeing the Braves parting with Escobar … unless Khalil Greene is also part of the deal or they’re looking to bring either Edgar Renteria or Rafael Furcal back to Atlanta. I do realize that Peavy is an ace, but their package seems a bit too heavy and against their philosophy of rebuilding from within. Then again, they have been unable to develop ace-level pitchers in recent years, and have an abundance of young position players, and oftentimes a team must deal from surplus. Escobar is a pretty special talent, though.

With or without Escobar, I’m not liking the idea that the Braves may have Jake Peavy next year — nor does it please me that they are supposedly looking to add a frontline free-agent starter such as A.J. Burnett or Ryan Dempster, as Miller also claims.

*** UPDATE ***

Ken Rosenthal is debunking this rumor, sort of.

If the Braves are getting Jake Peavy, it’s news to them.

The Braves are on the verge of a trade agreement with the Padres for Peavy, according to CBSSportsline.com, but the Padres have yet to communicate their acceptance of a Braves’ offer to Atlanta officials, major-league sources say.

Hmm …. he goes on to state this:
It is possible that the Padres have decided internally to proceed with the Braves, then finalize the details later Thursday. The teams spoke again on Wednesday, continuing discussions that have lasted for over a month.

So, Rosenthal is debunking the deal in one paragraph, then covering his butt just in case the deal is realized. Is he upset he didn’t get the scoop? Or was Miller too quick to the trigger?

We’ll know before Thanksgiving. Perhaps before the arrival of Beaujolais Nouveau.


Braves in Lead for Peavy, Asking for Olsen, Ludwick

According to Scott Miller at CBSSports.com, the Atlanta Braves are the frontrunners for Padres ace pitcher Jake Peavy.

Word on the street is that the Braves are willing to part with top centerfield prospect Gorkys Hernandez — a Carlos Gomez-type guy whom Atlanta picked up in last year’s Edgar Renteria deal with the Tigers. Imagine if the Braves were able to turn Andy Marte (the man they traded to Boston for Renteria) into Jair Jurrjens and Jake Peavy? Miller claims the Braves are offering shortstop Yunel Escobar as well — something I find hard to believe. Peavy supposedly has a “strong interest” in joining the Braves. Yippee. I’m not liking the idea of an Atlanta rotation beginning with Peavy, Hudson, and Jurrjens. At least John Smoltz is gone through June — though I have a funny feeling he’ll be back with Braves during the second half of ’09.

If the Peavy deal falls through, Miller also reports that the Braves have inquired about Marlins pitcher Scott Olsen. That punk makes me angry; I hope he gets sent to an AL team.

In addition to pitching, the Braves are supposedly after St. Louis outfielder Ryan Ludwick, who is coming off a career year. The Cardinals are looking to sell high, and hoping to get Kelly Johnson in return. This tidbit comes from Atlanta Journal-Constitution writer David O’Brien.