Tag: lance broadway

Broadway a Blue Jay and Other News

In a twist of irony, Lance Broadway has signed with the Blue Jays.

Broadway was non-tendered by the Mets seven months after acquiring him in a trade with the White Sox for Ramon Castro. Castro agreed to terms with the Blue Jays a few days ago.

Meanwhile, free-agent righthander Jason Marquis announced he is a “perfect fit” for the Washington Nationals. Hmm, where have I heard that before?

In other news, the Mets may or may not have upped their offer to Jason Bay. I’ve chosen to avoid any Bay buzz until things sound more serious and/or “real” — there’s a lot of hot air. The Cardinals seem intent on signing Matt Holliday, having offered him either a 5- or 8-year deal, depending on the source.

Additionally, the Mets have reportedly made a two-year offer to Ryota Igarashi, a relief pitcher from Japan. However, Patrick Newman of NPBTracker hears there are at least three offers from other teams on the table. I know nothing about Igarashi other than what Newman has on his blog (which is excellent, by the way).

So hard to comment on the Mets when it comes to Japan. On the one hand, you want them to be “in” on anything that could be fruitful, but on the other hand, their history with Japanese imports has been less than fulfilling. Remember it was the Mets who chose not to listen to Bobby Valentine when he recommended Ichiro Suzuki, but later brought in Kaz Matsui to move Jose Reyes out of shortstop. But then again, Ken Takahashi worked out nicely. /sarcasm

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2009 Analysis: Lance Broadway

Early in September, loyal MetsToday reader “The DZA” made a content suggestion:

Seeing as the off season is looking to be more intriguing than the regular – would you perhaps give us a rundown of each player on the Mets as to how you think they have performed, and their subsequent projection (i.e. where they fit in or don’t fit in for the future)?

FYI, The DZA logs in from London — so MetsToday has officially achieved worldwide influence (!).

We’ll begin with the pitching staff, going in alphabetical order — that makes Lance Broadway first.

Lance Broadway

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We were treated to only 16 appearances and 30.2 IP of Lance “Off Off” Broadway, so it’s hard to make an intelligent analysis.

After a spectacular college career at Texas Christian U., Broadway was drafted 15th overall in the 2005 by the White Sox and pegged for stardom. However, he was hittable from day one as a pro, and struggled with his control at both the AAA and MLB levels.

Broadway has a sinking fastball with impressive movement down and in to RH hitters, but it rarely gets far above 90 MPH and his command of it was inconsistent as a Met. His attempts at secondary stuff were similarly futile — a cut fastball/slider appeared to be the best of a bad lot.

One positive was his demeanor and composure on the mound; he was professional, competitive, and unflappable — he appears to have the heart of a lion. That can go a long way, as it’s something that few pitchers can develop if it isn’t already part of their makeup.

It’s unlikely that Broadway will one day live up to his billing as a star collegian and #1 pick. At 26 years old, time is running out quickly. To succeed at the MLB level with his high-80s / low 90s velocity, Broadway needs to have pinpoint control AND a plus off-speed pitch. Unfortunately he has displayed neither as a New York Met. That’s not to say he can’t still “figure it out”, and considering the Mets’ lack of depth in regard to pitching at the upper levels of the farm system, they have little choice but to start him in AAA Buffalo in 2010 and hope for the best. It probably makes sense to keep him in the starting rotation as a minor leaguer, so that he can spend more time and innings developing command of his fastball and a secondary pitch. I don’t see his velocity jumping the necessary 5-8 MPH to become a late-inning relief specialist, so his best shot is probably as a 5th starter / long reliever.

If indeed Lance can take the next step in his development, it would make a great story befitting of, um, Broadway (oh, bad one, huh?).

What’s your take on Lance Broadway? Post your analysis and opinion in the comments.

Next up is the immortal Elmer Dessens.

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Mets Release Livan Hernandez

According to MetsBlog, the Mets have released Livan Hernandez and activated Billy Wagner from the DL.

Though Livan has struggled mightily in his last three starts, I’m mildly surprised if only because I don’t know who is going to take his spot in the rotation. Nelson Figueroa? Tim Redding? After seeing two three-inning starts by Bobby Parnell, and getting lucky to get 5 innings out of Ollie Perez, you’d think the Mets would reserve those two for long duty.

Hopefully this clears the way for the Mets to promote Lance Broadway or Tobi Stoner to get a look-see. Today happens to be Broadway’s 26th birthday, and though he’s been awful in AAA, you’d have to think he has a better shot at making the 2010 roster than Tim Redding.

Looking forward to seeing Billy Wagner in action … if he can crank it up to 95 MPH, the Mets will have a nice trading piece — or setup man for next year.

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Ramon Castro Traded to White Sox

lance-broadwayAs had been rumored, catcher Ramon Castro has been traded to the Chicago White Sox in return for RHP Lance Broadway.

The deal cements Omir Santos’ place on the 25-man roster as the current backup to the returning Brian Schneider. Manager Jerry Manuel, however, said that although Schneider would get the bulk of the playing time “at first”, he would more or less have to perform to remain the regular backstop.

At first glance, the trade appears to be a good one for all sides. The White Sox get a slugging righthanded-hitting catcher to platoon with A.J. Pierzynski, the Mets make room for Santos while also ridding themselves of a player in need of constant motivation, Castro gets a chance to play for a manager who will push him, the Mets get a young middle reliever to add to their AAA depth, and Broadway goes to an organization that may have more use for him than the one he’s leaving.

The White Sox have good depth in their bullpen, leaving little room and patience for the 25-year-old Broadway, who has struggled in his short stints in MLB over the past three seasons.

However, Broadway was the 15th overall pick in the 2005 draft, and as recently as last January was Chicago’s #2 prospect according to Baseball America. He is a tall Texan who can throw four pitches for strikes, but his velocity rarely gets above 90 MPH. If he can ever find consistent command of those four pitches, he would project as a Greg Maddux type of pitcher. The White Sox gave up on him as a starter, and though he remained one as a minor leaguer, he’s since been projected as an MLB middle reliever. I’m not sure how that will pan out, as it’s tough to pitch in that role as a junkballer. In any case, he’s being sent to Buffalo, and we’ll find out soon what plans the Mets have for him. My guess is they’ll plug him into the rotation at first to get a good look at him / give him innings to show what he can do.

The Mets did send cash back to Chicago, though the amount was undisclosed at press time.

As David Lennon tweeted, Broadway has a good name for New York City.

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