Tuesday Night, December 4, 2007
Early Evening Update
OKÖ I am just going to keep the same Comments stream going, so that the numbers of comments makes me feel good. I thought posting a quick update tonight would be good.
The Johan Update Ė Well, since we last chatted:
∑ Should have linked to this earlier, but the most recent Johan Santana rumors can be found at mlbtraderumors.com. †
∑ There were rumors that Bill Smith and Tony Reagins, the Angels GM, were talking about Santana. So, we all started thinking that names like Jered Weaver, Brandon Wood, Howie Kendrick, Reggie Willits, Sean Rodriguez, Joe Saunders, Ervin Santana might make sense in an exchange.
∑ The Red Sox apparently upped their offer to the Twins, making it a potential 5-1 trade. The Red Sox would send Jon Lester, Coco Crisp, Justin Masterson, Jed Lowrie and not Ryan Kalish. I know that many believe that quality over quantity is the way to go, and I donít disagree with that. But, the Twins are wise to be trading Santana, and if Clay Buchholz and Jacoby Ellsbury will not be added to the package, then quantity is not a bad thing. I guess, in my mind, I donít want to put all of my eggs into one basket. For instance, if it is a 2-1 or 3-1 trade where the big prospect is Buchholz, Ellsbury or Phil Hughes, what if that guy gets hurt, or isnít able to handle that pressure, or simply turns out not to be so great? In the above situation, Jon Lester has a chance to be very good, a solid #2 or #3. Coco Crisp is what he is. As I wrote the other day, he is a GREAT defensive centerfielder and an adequate offensive piece. Justin Masterson, according to scouting reports from people much closer to the game than I, has an absolutely amazing sinkerball. He gets a lot of groundballs and has enough stuff to record strikeouts too. Although Joe Christensen found a scout that says there is no way that Jed Lowrie can play SS. Well, heís done it his whole life, three years at Stanford and all but a couple dozen minor league games. When I hear a comparable of Carlos Guillen, I think that is worth getting excited about. And Kalish is young, but his upside for both power and speed is tremendous. He could be a CF option in two years. I agree that quality is key, but when you are getting three of the teamís top 7 prospects, a guy who won the World Series clinching game and a Gold Glove caliber CF, that is not a bad trade for the Twins. Yes, I would prefer Ellsbury to Crisp, but heís no sure thing, heís a borderline All-Star potentially. We just donít know.
∑ Reagins stated that he met with Smith, but it wasnít about Santana. Interesting!
∑ Miguel Cabrera was traded, along with Dontrelle Willis, to the Detroit Tigers. Cabrera has been rumored to be going to the Angels.
∑ The Yankees (Hank Steinbrenner, that is) have said a couple of times that they are out of the bidding for Johan.
∑ Although Reagins said that he and Smith havenít discussed Cabrera, it is hard to imagine that they havenít at least threw some ideas together.
∑ I think it is pretty likely that Santana will go to the Red Sox in the above deal, maybe slightly altered (maybe we can get them to take Nick Punto and/or Juan Rincon in the deal as well. Or, maybe Ellsbury would be a possibility if the Twins sent a prospect their way?
∑ However, do not count out the Angels. As we learned from the Torii Hunter situation, they have a way of showing up at the last minute and making things happen quickly, so I wouldnít be completely shocked if such a deal happened. I would be thrilled with a deal for Joe Saunders, Howie Kendrick, Brandon Wood and Reggie Willits!
∑ Also the Dodgers were big in the Cabrera discussions, so maybe they can work out something with the Twins. I want Jonathan Broxton is any trade from the Dodgers though, as a replacement for Joe Nathan.
The Tigers/Marlins Trade
∑ This is definitely a blockbuster. Earlier in the day, it was reported that the Marlins were considering trading Miguel Cabrera and Dontrelle Willis together.
∑ Then it came out that that was not going to happen because the Marlins could get more by trading them separately.
∑ And then shortly after 5:00, it was announced that the Detroit Tigers were acquiring Cabrera and Willis from the Marlins in exchange for Andrew Miller, Cameron Maybin, backup catcher Mike Rabelo and three pitching prospects. That is a pretty nice haul for two players!
∑ Cameron Maybin is a big-time prospect. He came up late in the season and hit just .143 in 49 at bats. He homered off of Roger Clemens. He was the 10th pick in the 2005 draft after slipping some. At 20 years old, he has the chance to be the Marlins starting CF already in 2008.
∑ Andrew Miller was the Tigers first round pick in 2006. The lanky lefty was the 6th overall pick. In 2006, he came up to the Tigers at the end of the season. In 2007, he went 5-5 with a 5.63 ERA as a 22 year old. He could be an All Star too.
∑ Mike Rabelo is a backup catcher, although he may be able to compete with Miguel Olivo for the Marlins starting job.
∑ 23 year old Burke Badenhop was the Tigers 19th round pick in 2005 out of Bowling Green. He appears to be a control pitcher. He went 10-6 in the Florida State League with a 3.13 ERA. However, he struck out just 78 in his 135 innings.
∑ Eulogio de la Cruz is also 23. The little right has primarily been a reliever since the Tigers signed him in 2001. He also is not a big strikeout guy.
∑ Dallas Trahern just turned 22. He was a 34th round pick in 2004 who then signed as a draft and follow. His win-loss record on the way up has not been good, but he has had a good ERA. Again, he is not a strikeout pitcher.
∑ So basically, the Marlins got two blue-chip, top of the prospect lists guys, a backup catcher, two guys that maybe have #4 potential, and middle reliever. In other words, it is all about Maybin and Miller. For Dontrelle Willis and Miguel Cabrera, that may not seem like enough. However, the Marlins were not going to sign either of them beyond this year anyway, so instead of a year from one of the greats (Cabrera) and one more year from a league average starter (Willis), they will get six years each from Maybin and Miller. In the end, that is a very fair trade. The Twins probably didnít have the high-end guys like Maybe and Miller, however, the team could have offered much more pitching. That said, like the Marlins, it is unlikely the Twins would have had either player for more than one year, so it isnít worth giving up that much. The Tigers, on the other hand, maybe be able to sign both.
∑ Think of this potential Tigers lineup on opening day: Curtis Granderson CF, Placido Polanco 2B, Miguel Cabrera 3B, Magglio Ordonez RF, Gary Sheffield DH, Carlos Guillen 1B, Edgar Renterria SS, Ivan Rodriguez C, Marcus Thames (or whoever) LF. That is a pretty strong lineup.
∑ Their rotation now has three greatly overrated left-handed starters (Willis, Kenny Rogers and Nate Robertson) and the overrated Jeremy Bonderman. But, those guys may be just good enough to get wins because of that offense. Sounds like the Yankees situation or the last couple of years, right? Of course, in Cabrera and Willis, they get two players who have been multiple All-Stars and are both under 28 years old. That helps them as well because the rest of the hitters not named Granderson are really old.
∑ That is why the Twins must trade Johan Santana and build for 2010 when the Tigers will be old and overpaid, and Cleveland may start breaking up a little bit.
One More Note
∑ How is this for unfounded and unsubstantiated rumorÖ I was talking with a friend (Todd) earlier. He says that the Twins need to get the best available player, and he feels that is Phil Hughes. The package of Hughes, Melky Cabrera and one other player is the deal he would make. However, he referenced yesterdayís Twins/Astros discussions and said, well, why donít the Twins trade Joe Nathan, along with Melky Cabrera for Hunter Pence? How great would that be? However, does Melky have the bat to play RF in place of Pence? There is little to no chance of this series of trades would happen, but it is fun to dream.