Sunday, November 20, 2011

2011 Giants 40-Man Moves Ahead of Rule 5

Hank Schulman scooped everyone with his report on Villalona, the 40-man changes, and Pablo Sandoval's lasix eye surgery.  Andy Baggarly had an extensive blog on the whole matter.

The News:  Added to the Giants 40-man roster were 1B Angel Villalona, outfielders Tyler Graham and Roger Kieschnick, infielder Charlie Culberson, and pitchers Dan Otero and Hector Correa, whom the Giants got as part of a series of trades that sent now-retired Jack Taschner to the Phillies.

However, the Giants were at 36 at that time, so they had to DFA Waldis Joaquin again and Darren Ford.   If they are not traded in 10 days, any team may pick them up, but the Giants are interested in picking them both back up afterward. Last time they DFAed Joaquin, he was claimed but the White Sox, he refused and became a free agent, upon which he resigned with the Giants.

The surprising news was that Villalona was added.  It was speculated that perhaps this was related to getting Angel's visa reinstated so that he can return to the U.S.  There are other logical reasons I could think of.  One is that this was part of the legal settlement of the $5M lawsuit that Villalona filed against the Giants.  I have to think that a 40-man player is paid a lot more than a minor leaguer.  Another is that perhaps the Giants would just like to move forward on this, and by putting him on the 40-man, there is now a timeclock on when he can be jettisoned from the organization without there being really hard feelings.  For example, if he were not put on the 40-man but was just released after he becomes a 6 year minor leaguer, he could decide that the Giants didn't give him enough of a chance and decide to sue again.  Lastly, I believe that Rule 5 also has drafting of lower level prospects ( never understood that), and since his highest level is single-A, perhaps he could have been grabbed for someone's AA team.

Hopefully, and more likely, is that Villalona is still a viable prospect.  The reports are that his swing is still good, that he has good bat speed.  The original reports noted that he had slimmed down.  I would have liked to have heard more about that, because he was a Big Boi, and slimming is not much when you are that big to begin with.  But he sounds very serious about doing something in baseball, so with all that free time I was hoping that maybe he did something like Sandoval and really slimmed down.  Maybe Sandoval can introduce him to his trainers during spring training and get him on the program.

I saw some worries out there about there being so many 1B now in the Giants system.   I would note that he's always wanted to play 3B, was rated a plus prospect at defense at 3B when he first was signed, and continued to take fielding practice at 3B even while he was playing 1B. He was only playing first because the Giants wanted him to focus more on his offense than his defense. So I think 3B is viable for him going forward, if not already part of his legal settlement.

Among other news, Panda got his eyes Lasiked. He was having problems with his contacts -remember, he hit 2009 without good eye sight - and this procedure would allow him good vision without the equipment, as I recall goggles being involved too. He reported that it went fine, or maybe it was his brother who tweeted that, do not recall. So, in other words, he was hampered by his vision again in 2011 but should be able to see the ball clearly all the time in 2012. It was also noted that his shoulder was healed too, and should not hamper him in 2012 either. Hopefully, look out baseball world!


  1. I think there's room in the Giants system for another first baseman. Between Brett Pill who is at a do or die age and Ricky Oropesa who has yet to play a professional game, they really don't have anybody to speak of.

  2. BTW, looks like Selig is going to try to resolve the A's stadium situation. He's reportedly set to meet with the Giants about it within 2 weeks. I really hope they don't let the A's move to San Jose, which would clearly hurt the Giants financially. I suppose the Giants could expand their fanbase into the East Bay as their ballpark is more accessible to the East Bay than San Jose, but the money is in Silicon Valley. It seems to me MLB would go from having 1 healthy franchise and one poor one to two that would struggle. Maybe there's enough money and fans to go around, I don't know. I just know I've never gotten over what happened to the Giants after the A's moved to Oakland and split off a big part of their fanbase.

    Sorry for the off-topic comment, but I know you have an interest in this.

  3. Never need to apologize DrB, as long as it is the Giants, it is not off topic.

    Been meaning to write on this. I basically agree with you, but the MLB will let the A's move. However, like the Orioles situation when Nats moved into their territory, they will have to pay the Giants a large sum of money for doing that.

    I think the A's have been getting a lot of revenue sharing money and pocketing most of it, they should have a lot of cash to pay the dowry now. I will put all my thoughts out, though you probably can find it on web somewhere, I have commented my feelings before.

  4. So this is slightly off topic as well, but I'm not polite like DrB...

    Clint Barmes is supposedly signed with the Buccos for 2/10.5MM, the latest in a series of 2 year contracts for utility types. I am surprised that Sabean didn't go 2/12, or maybe we'll find out he did. I think one problem he's running into is teams are offering specific roles whereas the Giants might be spelling it out that Crawford is the starter. Thankfully we weren't in on Jamey Carroll (that raved about 350 OBP is so damn empty and he's way old - somehow because he has a decent OBP he is the darling that Sabean should sign? Weird) but Minny promised him the starting gig. Barmes apparently gets the starting gig in PIT. So that lends itself to your theory that the G's are looking for a caddy/backup type.

    Which brings us to this: we have 2, one I like and 1 I don't, but they are looking cheap in this market. Just offer arb for Hobbit/Keppinger and be done with it. You can bargain hunt after January with whoever is left. I doubted your theory OGC that Sabean had the discipline to avoid multi-year contracts when he has somebody lined up but so far its holding up.

    On Villalona - do they dump him into double-A? We have a lot of talent coming to SJ next year. I think you are correct - protect the talent, start the clock.

    Things change. There wasn't big time money in the south bay when the A's moved in on the Giants (I know, 10 years but still), there wasn't even that big money (well established big money) in 1993 when these rights were transferred. There is big money now.

  5. Things change in the free agent market every year as well - we've been back and forth about that 2004 FA year OGC, the signings that stand out to me that Sabean screwed the pooch on are Alfonso and Benetiz, but one thing that gets old is the constant harping on Sabean about failed FA from the back end lens. In general I agree you shouldn't overpay for relievers, LOOGYs, etc. But in this specific market, there are no developed LOOGYS. So holding onto our guys makes a whole lot of sense. There is a lot of comparing this year to that Vladdy year, and I don't think that is a fair comparison.

    FA is always a fluid situation, that becomes concrete once the results are in. I'm specifically thinking about this shortstop market, as I've roundly criticized for last years Tejada signing. We have teams looking at the market, deciding on flawed older guys like Carroll and Barmes to fit the bill. We have 2 obvious top-tier guys (did you find that Shredder video? The projections seemed off but the overall bad review of Reyes seemed like a good hint to me - be very careful with big year dollar contracts), a couple flawed guys like Furcal and Barmes, and then some real compromises.

    The Giants need to back off this market, get our middle infield guys under control for a trade or to just keep for the year. Then they need to look hard at Jimmy Rollins if Beltran isn't going to happen. If the Phils screw the pooch on this (overpaying Papelbon and apparently only offering Rollins 3/30 right now) that may be a 2nd alternative. I like alternatives, it makes the overspend easier.

    But overall, it does appear to me that Sabean is shopping on the cheap for a middle infield caddy, may look at catcher or may not (that CBA should take away Ramon Hernandez' draft pick cost - making him a lot more attractive) and maybe another OF. I think they'll wait on that last one until after Beltran decides though.

    So a tip of the hat OGC, your theory on Sabean keeping open spots for the guys the Giants really like may just prove out. I reserve the right to bitch if Bochy plays that caddy and benches Crawford after a 2 week slump though...

    Also I put up some thoughts on your Vogelsong/Zito article, over there.

  6. Sorry, that last post is 101 on why you should put the computer down when your kids are whining at you. To clarify a bit: Alfonso in 2003, Benitez in 2004 - I was just using those as examples of Sabean overspending on mediocre flawed guys that at the time looked not too good and then turned out very badly. They deserve criticism but should also be put into context of the YEAR that was going on when they signed.

    The Vlad quote is coming up a lot - the poo poo platter of mediocre guys like Hermanson and Brower are being compared to Lopez/Affeldt, that pisses me off, because both our guys are in or close to the top 10 in the league, not mediocre at all. And I trust the Giants to evaluate their farm system, the trade market and the FA market and if they deem to spend that I think its a good deal. With the money being thrown around (and the years!) it looks like a great deal.

    I said I like alternatives - it makes the overspend LESS LIKELY, is what I meant to say. You are on record saying you're OK with the Giants as configured going to war. I'm on record saying I'd like one more bat, preferably in LF if its possible, but I'm OK if it gets too expensive. I think he'll be way too much money, but I do like Jimmy Rollins as a player a lot if the chips fall the G's way and they can get him for 3/36. I don't expect it to happen.

    Most likely if FLA ups their PR offer on Reyes and actually sign him, then Rollins will get that 4th year and maybe 4/50 or something. Too many teams chasing too few good shortstops. I think Reyes is either going to FL on a slight discount or getting a ton of money thrown at him by the Nationals. Don't want anything to do with him even at 6/90. But I do think Sabean should be in on these markets instead of being a monk. That is his style though, so be it.

    All right, time for the Niners. Cheers, sorry for the long winded, I'm excited to talk Gaints though (unlike a certain site we know...)

  7. I think the SS position debate is more one over "doing something, anything" as opposed to anything that really makes sense. Barnes seems like a marginal upgrade for more money. Why? I really don't like that attitude amongst some fans. I personally don't think Reyes/Rollins/Beltran are worth the risk of more than three years, but that's what they'll get, so it's a bad idea.

    It's funny how outside of AJ, the main criticism of Sabean is overpaying for older or injury prone free agents - yet the carrying on is about him NOT doing that. Proving that some people are idiots.

    I'm sure it'll be a bigger topic very soon, but not sure how I feel about the A's in San Jose. I have to think that if it was considered equitable in the past, then too bad if it isn't now - and anyway, what would really be fair? Cut San Jose in half?

    Not sure if the reality isn't (as posted above) that the Bay Area can't actually support two teams long-term. It has to be foremost in Selig's mind what a royal pain in the ass it is when a team gets into financial trouble. Don't think he wants to potentially double the risk.

  8. My belief is the Giants would have won the NLW if they had had an equally productive Posey and FSanchez for the entire 2011 season. In fact, they were in first place until late in the year, based on the lead they had put together with those two. They may even have been able to hold off the rest of the league without Franchez and Posey if they had gotten production out of Torres, Burrell, Ross, and Huff.

    So, that colors my assessment of next year. I don't agree with the posters who think we need Beltran or another bat in his place. I am expecting a resurgence from Huff, which leads to my expectation that we get considerable (above average for the NL) offensive production from 3b (Panda), 1b (Huff), C (POsey), CF (Cabrerra) and slightly above average Offense from 2b (Franchez), and RF (Schierholtz). That leaves only two questionable spots, SS and LF. I am fine with going with Crawford for his defense and what I expect will be 225-240 BA. We have plenty of options to run out to LF, Belt, Torres (possibly), Ross, Pill or some FA sleeper we give a ST invite to. I hope Belt gets a solid shot. I know he looked lost at times, but I do think he learned, identified some of his major holes and had been devising solutions. Playing is the only way for him to develop. With Posey and Cabrerra, and Franchez in the lineup, there is much more protection for him, so he is likely to bat 7th - and either be pitched to (which will aid his learning, developing) or pitched around (not a bad thing with his good eye). I am fine with this lineup and bench, pzarticularly if the money saved goes to preserving our pitching going into the future.
    Even a player like Beltran, who I like, costs to much: he costs us money we need to devote to pitching. And he costs us development time for guys like Belt, Pill, even Torres, or, if Torres is lost, Christian. LF is the easiest spot on the field to fill. I say we get in to July, late July, if the lack of LF production is keeping us from solidly competing for the title, then we can pick up another Beltran - and we will know that none of those guys who had their shot Ap-July will be back (Belt, Pill, Torres, Ross, Christian).

  9. Given the good defensive stats for Fontenot and he also was very good at baserunning too (I'm working on something on the team soon on that), I like him for one of the MI bench spots, sign Kepp just as backup in case nobody falls to us in January, but hopefully a non-tender or free agent will be around to sign a minor league contract (key because we have no 40-man spots).

    I think you have to repeat Villalona in San Jose, not only because there are a lot of Spanish speaking neighborhoods where he can feel more comfortable (more so than Richmond, VA), but also because he wasn't great there either at the time, and has been out of pro baseball for two years now.

    If he's mashing, very easy to promote him quickly, a la Belt, if necessary, though I think I would just take it slow with him his first year back and just keep him in SJ the whole year, no matter what. Not like we need him in the majors anyway, nor would I expect him to be, for 2013, I would target 2014 as the earliest to hope that he's made it up to the big club.

    I'm going to write about San Jose soon.

  10. Allfrank - the injuries took a lot out of the Giants for sure. I think I'm in the middle, I like the young players we have but why not stack the deck a little more? The main question for me is how the team will handle Brandon Belt. If there is a clearly defined roll I'd be a lot happier, whether that is starting, platooning or back to AAA, to come up if Huff sucks/hurt, Schierholtz sucks/hurt or Beltran or whoever mans LF is hurt. (I am assuming Huff is on notice and will have a short leash, any FA signing will have a very long leash). Given the number of lefties a righty masher would be nice.

    Marc - good points, not only is there a good reason to not bid but there is also a good chance of not winning the bid no matter. I think fans get unreasonable expectations that if you have interest in a FA you automatically win that FA. And while I do admit to complaining from time to time about Sabean's tendency to fixate on what he wants and go overbid to get it done, that is often what it takes to succeed.

    I've had a soft spot for Fonty since we picked him up. He's a great role player, he had a down statistical year, most likely trying to get on track after the injury. Little guy with surprising pop, I hope that he stays on, and this FA market is making that much more likely. I'm interested in seeing stats on our baserunning. My gut judgement without looking anything up was we had a terrible CS rate. Combination of slow guys and botched hit/runs and very predictable sends and throw outs when we had a speed guy on. Sabean has talked about getting younger and faster, its a hard thing to execute.

  11. I like Barmes, but he's never played out of a pitcher friendly ballpark which makes him risky for a team like the Giants. Glad they aren't the one paying $10.5 M over 2 years. At this point, I think they have to close their eyes and go with Crawford as the starter and Fonty as the utility IF. I'd like them to re-up DeRosa for $1 M or less base pay too. He can play 2B in a pinch and would be a nice RH bat off the bench.


    Saw your comments over on Hardball Times. Gonna post my own over there pretty soon. That article was pretty much a snarkfest aimed at Brian Sabean which as you pointed out was undeserved.

  12. DrB, I have generally found that Treder usually is more even-handed in his writing on the Giants, so I was shocked that 1) he showed little knowledge about the current Giants, per my comments, and 2) that he was as negative as he was, snarky as you put it. That's why I was more reserved in my comments than attack mode, as I usually am when I find people to be snarky.

    Usually he seems to be pretty knowledgeable, and he lives and works in the Bay Area so he's usually aware of local media, and I've generally found him to be pretty knowledgeable.

    Yeah, I've been mostly for Crawford and DeRosa since the end of the season - only wondering how DeRosa would make the roster - and after looking at Bill James defensive and baserunning stats, Fontenot actually adds a lot of value beyond his batting line. Having them and Franchez for MI in 2012 would be OK for me.

  13. Shankbone, your gut is good, the Giants did have a terrible CS rate, but were pretty great at taking extra bases. I will get into it more when I post my blog post on it, pretty interesting data, I think with shocking (at least to me) data.

  14. Allfrank, I basically agree with you regarding the 2012 Giants lineup. I am slowly coming to the conclusion that it would be better off to let Beltran go and let Belt start the season for us in LF.

    But to me the mitigating factor there is that I don't think he's ready yet to reach his potential in the majors yet. I see him similar to Matt Williams, struggling with his strikeouts early in his MLB career before figuring it out. He seemed to have progressed, as much as he yo-yoed, by year's end, at least to me, but I don't think he's there yet.

    So it gets back down to depth again. While Beltran would take away playing time in the majors and money away from pitchers (if their mad money is that low), having him in LF is an upgrade on the offense over Belt, both in terms of batting line and probability of achieving batting line.

    And having Belt in the minors is insurance in case Huff really is done and not producing again in 2012.

    So I like having Beltran as insurance in 2012 in case Belt is not ready and in case Huff is done. While he takes away money in 2012, my assumption is that in 2013, most probably Huff is gone, with Belt at 1B and Beltran in LF, and the salaries would mostly cancel out as Huff is at $11M and Beltran probably around $15M. Rowand would be gone too, and who knows, maybe Cabrera too if things don't work out.

    So while I think the odds are good right now that the Giants get into the 2012 playoffs with the set of players that they have now, getting Beltran would almost ensure it, as then hopefully the risk of a lowered performance from LF and 1B is mitigated by having Belt as backup in the minors.

    There is also insurance there in case Schierholtz either injures himself again or doesn't perform as we hope. Beltran could move to RF, Belt to LF. Pill could also see time in LF as well, should problems arise.

    Without Beltran, then the corners projected performance in 2012 is more like a house of cards that will fold if Schierholtz gets injured, or Belt still needs a lot of development, or Huff really is done, as we would not really have anything waiting in AAA to reliably replace production. Signing Beltran and putting Belt in AAA would give us taht great insurance policy in LF, 1B, and RF as well.

    Because Belt is not all there yet, I'm OK with him not getting guaranteed development time in the majors. Heck, he can't even figure out AAA pitchers yet in terms of avoiding strikeouts, why can't he figure that out first before advancing to full-time in the majors?

    If he were hitting as well in AAA as he was in AA, then I would agree that his development would be stunted. But I see no harm in having him figure out AAA first before getting regular time in majors in 2013.

  15. I think the difference between Belt and Beltran is that Belt MIGHT put up a line as good as Beltran's whereas if Beltran is healthy, you KNOW he will put up at least a .275 with 25 HR's. The question about Beltran is if he can stay healthy for a full season.

    If the Giants have the $$$ to sign Beltran to no more than 3 years max, I'm OK with it. If not or if he can get 4 or 5 years somewhere else, I'm OK with running Belt out there too.

    It's win-win for me. I'm happy however it turns out!

  16. I like your house of cards analogy. Beltran (or another solid LF hitter) allows the Giants to use Belt as an all around backup, taking pressure off of him and most likely taking pressure off of Bochy from the fans for a couple of months while they figure out if Huff is back to even year form or not. I like Schierholtz, but he is now officially injury prone. Having an insurance policy for 3 positions is a good move.

    I'm happy however it turns out as well, I would like to have a little more clarity coming from the Brain Trust for Belt's sake. I just hate to see a top homegrown talent jimmy jacked. The public scolding of Huff tells me its going to be different next year, but I'm a skeptic, I want to see it happen before I believe.

    So how is the new Type A FA draft pick structure going to effect this? Not sure yet, but it looks like Willingham, Cuddyer and Hernandez would all not cost draft picks as long as the offer is under this 12MM ceiling. I have a feeling there will be a whole lot of gamesmanship on whatever that eventual figure is to avoid draft picks in the future.

  17. DrB, I agree with you, didn't make the point here, but had before, that Beltran has to be signed to a contract that makes sense and definitely no more than 3 years.

    I think we can be pretty sure that Beltran will not stay healthy for a full season, and that is what might drive him into the Giants arms because no other team thinks he can be healthy either and thus would offer him more than 3 years.

    I'm also relying on him not being healthy, which would give the Giants an excuse to bring up Belt and see where he is in his development.

    Shankbone, I don't see any other hitter than Beltran to be good enough to push Belt to AAA. Willingham? No. Cuddyer? Definitely No! Blanking on Hernandez, but I would have to say no. These guys have a lot of negatives, particularly defensive ones, and they are not sure things to hit better than Belt, I can see Belt hitting better than them, plus field better and run better. No thanks, I'd rather take my chances with Belt in this case, and find a cheap OF in January to compete (probably Ross) with Belt, maybe Torres too if he's willing to sign immediately to cheaper contract, like Fontenot did last season.

    Beltran is more of a sure upgrade, and I don't think you can go wrong signing those types of players to sensible contracts (<=$15M/per, 3 or less years). Plus the Giants know his body more since he was here last season, these other guys are question marks to me, as they are in that age range where things can go. In Beltran's case, we know it will go, but I can accept that in exchange for his plus bat most of the season and hopefully all of the playoffs.

  18. Also, I like to think ahead. In the World Series, the NL team is at a disadvantage usually because their DH is usually not so good a hitter (like 2002 WS), but with Beltran around, we probably can have Belt as our DH or if he's willing, Beltran could be DH with Belt in LF.

  19. OGC - I completely agree that Beltran is the better option. I'm just throwing down the likely names that the Giants have been linked with, and if they fail on Beltran might have a look. Sabean has tried to trade for both Cuddyer and Willingham, and Hernandez (catcher for the Reds) played for Bochy. I personally would rather have Belt over those players, but they might get discussed a bit more if there is no draft pick compensation to worry about. (As you broke down - Cuddyers poor defense and bad road splits do not make up for the position flexability) Willingham is a pretty one dimensional player. If draft pick compensation is ended that actually hurts Beltrans market some more.

    Beltran AL market: with the Bosox out if they sign Ortiz, Texas a wild card (unpredictable and Cruz/Hamilton never stay healthy) but looking at pitching after signing our old friend Joe Nathan tonight, Detroit is the only other AL team I can see looking at Beltran (big improvement over Delmon Young, but they have a DH already). So looking at Beltran's AL market, its not looking as robust as I might have thought. Delicate balance as Sabean deals with Baer's people to scare up the budget for it, but I would have no problem with the Sabean rush and overpay here, 3/45. It would be nice to cut it down to 2 years, but if the third year is what makes it happen...

    With the concern about his knees it should limit the market. I've been getting cautious about him, but if you go back before the injury (that took out 1/2 of each of the past 2 years) he is remarkably durable. I would expect him to miss time, so not only Belt but a decent 4th OF would be a good idea.

    Having the Rowand and Huff contracts end as well as possibly Franchez opens up a fair amount of payroll. Zito the next year, I think they can sign him, if it matches out. Overall chances of happening? I'd go 45-55% for us, I like our chances.

    When I read that hardball times article I didn't find it that snarky, maybe I am getting desensitized with all the freakouts about everything lately. I enjoyed the comments section, which may still be going on, I'll check it out tomorrow.

  20. And DrB knocks it out of the park with his last comment. Wow. Great analysis of the Belt/Huff situation. So DrB is predicting a even-year Huffie (with some regression) showing up sober and fit. I like it.

  21. Quick follow up on Beltran/Injury history. After his year 23 season where Johnny Damon took over for him, he has thrown down 155, 162, 141, 159, 151, 140, 144, 161 until the knee injury in 2009-10. Years 35-36 will definitely carry risk, and he may require some days off, but he has been remarkably durable except for that knee. If he does play left field hopefully that would take further pressure off.

    Hardball times has a new article on the OF Depth. The chart weighs the past 3 seasons 57/29/14. Beltran is the creme of the crop, followed by... All those damn Oakland A's OFs. Then Cuddyer. The 4 of them have almost equal wRAR value. Then the next guy... Cody Ross!

    I would be very happy with Beltran and Ross and calling the offseason done.

  22. Sorry, that wasn't clear enough. I read the hardballtimes article, and the comments. The last comment you made was devastating to Treder's arguments about Pill/Belt, specifically Belt's first major league stint. I didn't find the article that snarky but it was pretty lazy. And I agree with your prediction on Huff, I think he's a good soldier who will put in the effort.

    Huff's adventures in the OF really did look like a refugee from a slow pitch softball league though. The Giants didn't have a choice early on, they needed to move Huff back. Also, they totally got greedy with Belt's good spring training. Huff put too much pressure on himself, never got his head straight, and then he gave up. I can't remember if it was DrB or OGC who said it, but Huff really is again one of the hinges on next season. If he shows up, the offense will be league average for sure.

  23. "So I like having Beltran as insurance in 2012 in case Belt is not ready and in case Huff is done"

    well, I sure wouldn't bet the farm that Belt is ready and Huff isn't done. 50/50 overall.

    And yeah, Shankbone, I think the AL market isn't there for Beltran. Especially as you've got Fielder who ultimately will need to be a DH.

    Who knows? Nice problem to have, though.

  24. OK, my turn to take things off-topic. :^D

    Does anyone know whether the new CBA means that the Giants now get a supplemental pick for Beltran assuming he signs for over $12.4M per season? Because the contract agreement is that the Giants would not offer him arbitration, under the rationale that, under the old CBA, they would therefore not get a draft pick.

    But under the new CBA, arbitration is not what is necessary for the old team to get a pick, the old team only needs to offer a contract of at least $12.4M in order to get a pick, it looks like, and the Giants certainly look like they will make some sort of offer, but whether they win or not is the question. Plus, this pick does not cost the signing team, it appears, so Boras should have no problem with it and argue that the Giants should honor the spirit of the contract (avoiding signing team's loss of draft pick) had there been a loss of a draft pick. In any case, he should want more bidders, not less.

  25. Now I'm wondering if the Giants might be better off doing the Agent Ned route of offering a shorter but higher contract. One year at $20M? Two at $40M? Assuming he's getting at least 3 years at $18M per. If he's only getting 3@$15M per, then we could go down to $18M per.

  26. That would be insanely sneaky OGC. Haven't seen any official release yet, so can't comment. It would be fun to see the Giants game the system for once instead of TB with their 6 relievers, Boston signing Lugo for 4 days, etc.

  27. I put up that scenario over at DrB's. As an impatient, win the bidding now, I love that strategy. A Huff like deal, 2/30 with a 5MM buyout on a third year 15MM. He holds up, that third year is gravy.

  28. I don't think the new CBA compensation rules kick in until next offseason. The only part that kicks in this offseason is the teams who lose closers no longer get Type A compensation, except Boston gets it for losing Paps because it's not retroactive to deals that are already signed. Phils really get nailed on that one. I'd feel sorry for them except they are the Phillies.....

    Could be wrong about all this though. Right now I find the whole thing very confusing.

    The one I don't like is 10 "small market/small revenue" teams get to draw straws for 6 extra first and second round draft picks. Wow! Over time, those extra draft picks can really add up to a whole lot of extra talent! That may be a bigger advantage than a bigger payroll. The draft slotting rules seem to be so complicated it will be a full time job just to keep track of them and figure out for each team.

  29. MLB trade rumors has a good summary up, it is confusing:

    It looks like Heath Bell, Michael Cuddyer, Kelly Johnson, Ryan Madson, Josh Willingham and Francisco Rodriguez will all be modified Type A free agents under the new CBA, Teams that lose these players after offering arbitration will obtain first round picks in the slot before the signing team.

    Hernandez becomes essentially a Type B. No word on Beltran except he stays a "Type A" but the trigger mechanism seems to be offering arbitration, which is forbidden in the contract.

    This makes Willingham/Cuddyer more attractive, might cut into Beltran's market, good for us.

  30. Also, teams that acquire a pending FA during the season are not eligible for compensation, so that eliminates Beltran for the Giants anyway.



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