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Gotham Baseball's Zito Rumor

Gotham Baseball's Executive Editor, Mark Healey, had some informed speculation on Monday about a possible trade of Barry Zito to the Mets for Lastings Milledge and Brian Bannister.  I figured I'd pass it along, as these guys seem to have some good front office type sources.

Here are some highlights quoted from Healey from the thread:

"Call me nuts...but I still think something is happening here and will in the next couple of days...

Mike and I talk to scouts, front office people every week, sometimes daily....mostly to check on things, etc...

Before and after our respective trips to ST...we both did pre-work and post-work...

When people start getting tight-lipped, and strange things like Milledge and Bannister staying in Major League camp longer than they were supposed to be -- my antenna goes up.

However, be that as it may, this thread was specualtion...if I had any corroboration, it'd be in the Rumor Mill.

[posted today] About five minutes after I posted the above I got a phone call from my West Coast guy saying that My speculation "might not be far off the mark" but wouldn't elaborate...saying to check on what Oakland GM Billy Beane has been up to...

Hmmm...seems Billy traded the immortal Juan Cruz to the D'Backs for Brad Halsey (a 25 year old left-hander)...

Another starter, one less reliever for the Oaks?

The plot thickens..."

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Good stuff Rumor this and the twins rumor looks like teams are at least talking about some thing. how would zito to the mets affect his fantsy value up i would assume i have him on a team.

Possible? Yes. Will it happen? I'm not buying it.

If Pedro and Glavine got hurt, however, the chances of such a trade happening grow exponentially.

Minaya has also said, several times, that he views Milledge as part of the Wright and Reyes core. Believe it or not, if a trade is to be done, it will be done before the season or not at all. If you think Minaya is trading his starting LF in 2007 (and possibly beyond)for a couple months of Zito, I really can't agree.

And i'm not sure if you are aware of this, but ever since Kazmir was traded, Mets fans have been very protective of their stud prospects. I can only expect controversy, rightly or wrongly, will emerge if the above trade were to take place.

Thoughts? Concerns? Questions?

Yeah the Kazmir deal was the dumest trade.That dude is a STUD.Lefty who throws with gas and has good stuff hasn't honed his control but that will come.I keep track of this guy just to see what he does.He made the Sox's look bad a couple a years ago.You have to ask what were the Mets thinking in trading him for Zambrano and the lesser one at that.If only the Cardinal could have raped the Mets like Tampa did!!

From a STL guy Don't deal with Beane the guy raped Walt last year to get Mulder.Zito will command the farm and more.

Unless Minaya gets Zito to sign an extension I do not see this happening

these are always made up.


Doesn't it seem more likely that Beane is after Milledge and Pelfrey instead of Bannister?

Pelfrey has more upside.


I can definitely see Minaya trading Milledge. Haven't people been following Omar's career? He got the job in Montreal and immediately traded off the entire farm system (Grady Sizemore, Cliff Lee, etc.). By the time he was done, it looked like a wasteland. This offseason, he emptied his second farm system, with the exception of Milledge and perhaps a stray that escaped notice. In his defense, the Mets clearly lack another front-line starter if they want to have any hope of both winning the division AND going further. But if anyone thinks Minaya holds prospects sacred, they need only look at his track record.

Gotham Baseball is a poor arbiter for a rumour post. They print more hearsay and creative lunges than any site I have read. I just have zero faith in anything they suggest.


Omar Minaya is a terrible GM.

"Doesn't it seem more likely that Beane is after Milledge and Pelfrey instead of Bannister?

Pelfrey has more upside."

Please, stop typing and do some research.

First, Pelfrey isn't going anywhere. The Mets need pitching in the immediate future and he is the only stud they have. Second, the METS CAN'T TRADE HIM UNTIL JANUARY 2007. There is a rule about trading draft picks; A team can't do it until at least a year after the player signs.

And, as for my opinion, Zito isn't worth Milledge ALONE, nevermind Pelfrey or Bannister.

Wow - Another Mets rumor, this time they're actually going to give up something, huh? NO WAY THIS HAPPENS. This is more wishful thinking. No matter how high people seem to be on Lastings Milledge, he's totally unproven and Beane isn't stupid. And Beane's going to get back at least one pitcher with PROVEN potential. Man, I love this site...keep the fantasies comin'

"No matter how high people seem to be on Lastings Milledge, he's totally unproven and Beane isn't stupid. And Beane's going to get back at least one pitcher with PROVEN potential. Man, I love this site...keep the fantasies comin'"

I hope Beane gets some outrageous offer from the Angels and Minaya keeps Milledge a Met. Zito is ostensibly Met property in 2007 anyway, so I don't see the point in paying two ways.

Don't the A's already have a logjam in the OF/1B/DH? Seems like a great value deal for them, but would they simply flip Milledge?

Great point. Why would the A's even want him? It's not like they have a dearth of outfielders...

"Omar Minaya is a terrible GM"

You must be joking! Last I checked, he got Beltran, Pedro, Wagner, Delgado, Lo Duca, and more. He wasn't even here for the Kazmir trade. How can you say that when, without him, the Mets would still be a last place team?!

'dude'

Not taking sides on whether Omar is a good gm or not...but...

Anyone could have gotten those players with near-unlimited resources..aka..spend as much dough as they please.

"Zito is ostensibly Met property in 2007 anyway..."

Shuurrre he is. Seriously, I beleive you have the inside track on this. Drop me a line when the Yankees sign him. Oh, he'll stop by Shea to drive his price up, but he'll sign in the Bronx, because they have $$$ and and an actual chance to win.

Anyone could have gotten those players with near-unlimited resources..aka..spend as much dough as they please.

Tell that to Baltimore. Every year it seems everyone is always rejecting thier money. Except for Tejada which was a surprise.
Ths off-season alone, AJ Burnett, Kevin Millwood, Paul Konerko, Nomar Garciaparra, BJ Ryan, Paul Byrd, and JEREMY F'N BURNITZ! all rejected thier money. Last year Delgado was offered the most money from Baltimore and rejected them as well.

Ionno, I think you need to have the speech skills as well. You gotta spit game to these players in order to get them. It's like trying to "woo" a lady.

Although I love Zito and he's my favorite pitcher, I don't think it's very smart to trade Milledge for one year of Zito, who will be available as a free agent after the season.

No matter anyone says, he IS going to test that Free Agent market, you better bet your ass he's gonna take advantage of get those free dinners, free entertainment and he's gonna love the overall treatment. No one will get to sign him to an extension before October.

Minaya is a bad GM, yet he is not the worst. To compare him to Baltimore is ridiculous, that organization is a freaking mess.

"Oh, he'll stop by Shea to drive his price up, but he'll sign in the Bronx"

The Mets have several things the Yankees don't:
1. Your old friend Rick Peterson.
2. Players who are under the age of 35.
3. A pitchers park in the National League.

"because they have $$$ and and an actual chance to win."

Check Cot's and see how many contracts the Mets are tied into after 2006.

Why would you even care where Zito goes? You'd rather see him go and pitch for the Yankees? A team you might have to face in the playoffs?

Yeah. I guess that makes sense...

on planet Bizarro.

Erik: Yes, Pelfrey can be traded, see: Jeremey Bonderman.

Oh and Zito is a SoCal guy, so the most likely destinations for him are San Diego, Los Angeles and Arizona.

Bizarro Jerry(Seinfeld)

Erik is a gay cowboy.

Oh and Zito is a SoCal guy, so the most likely destinations for him are San Diego, Los Angeles and Arizona.

That's why I figured too.
But for some reason he's said many times he wants to play in the big stage/big spotlight if he could. ALOT of players and coaches have said he really wants to play in New York or Boston.

I mean, those 3 clubs are the ones with the most money so who knows what that really means but still... Wierder things have happened, like Carlos Beltran and Pedro Martinez signing with the New York Mets.

Oh and also. Gothan Baseball is a HORRIBLE site for "news/rumors" thier rumors are just bogus. This off-season I can't remember one time they were right.

IMO, Milledge is too close to being a big contributor to this team to trade him now. He had a good spring, he'll be called up sometime this year, and he'll be starting in our outfield next year.

I'd rather stick with the pitching staff we have (I admit it's a little thin) and go after Zito when he's a FA. Id rather give up two draft picks than Milledge.

"Erik: Yes, Pelfrey can be traded."

No, he can't. Stop spreading misinformation! Bonderman was traded a year after he was signed.

Its called a Player To Be Named Later.

About Minaya being the worst GM. How could that be?!? He learned from the best -- Steve Phillips ;)

The Mets are projected to win the division, but not by much. They need another SP.. Glavine and Pedro do not cut it.

The Mets do need another pitcher because right now other than Glavine and Pedro that rotation is real shaky. They have invested a lot of money into this team in a win now mode and another starter is what they are lacking most.

Also what makes people think that Beane does not want more outfielders Beane wants as many good solid prospects as possible. Milton Bradley is only a one-year deal as well is Frank Thomas, and Jay Payton. Add to that the fact that Kotsay seems to always get injured and the A's could definately need a stud outfielder in 2007.

Lastly Minaya is not the worst GM in baseball. He has made some solid deals. Playing in NY you cant build for the future you have to win now. Minaya thus far has done a good job getting established stars without letting go there best players. Milledge and Pelfrey are going to be stars. Milledge should only be moved for an ace pitcher which Zito isnt. If you add Milledge and Pelfrey, Bannister, and Hernandez to the Mets in 2007 they will have a solid young core. But some of these guys will probably have to go because if the Mets want to win it all this year a rotation of Pedro, Glavin, Zambrano, Traschel and Bannister is not going to be enough

That "writer" at Gotham has totally backed off this "rumor", btw.

On Minaya:

Show me one trade/free agent signing in which the Mets didn't overpay for what they got, either in players or salary (usually a combination of both, as in most trades, they are assuming free-agent level salaries AND trading good prospects).

The Mets are becoming the Yankees. Spending money doesn't make you a good GM.

On Zito: I still don't get what the big deal about him is. A few good months and all of a sudden he's god. He still walks too many guys, his "skill" stats are barely acceptable.

Good, yes. Calling him an ace is absurd.

Minaya didnt get ripped off in the Delgado trade

He got a slugging first baseman for a mediocre prospect in Jacobs, a pitcher with mediocre stuff but who still is pretty good in Petit, and Psomas who is 23 and has yet to play about class A. That is hardly a rip off. Not to mention the Marlins threw in cash

In the LoDuca trade the Mets got a solid catcher in LoDuca for a young arm who struggled in high class A in Hernandez and an outfielder who is still in class A at 24 and is not thriving.

In both scenarios he got good experienced players in return for unproven minor leaguers

Bradley is under A's control for 2 years.

There an option year? Because I looked it up and it said a one year contract I could be wrong though

In both scenarios he got players making more than they're worth, AND gave up at least semi-valuable inexpensive players in the process.

Point taken about the Mets getting money in the deal. So they're paying Delgado $14M per year instead of $16M. That's better, but not much. Delgado's probably a $12M player, so the Mets gave away a potential #3 starter, a pretty solid 1B prospect (who can also catch), plus another player. All for the privlige of overpaying by $2M a year for a player who didn't want to play for them a year earlier.

For LoDuca, they traded a very good, young pitching prospect for a declining catcher, when comparables were available on the free agent market at the same price.

Yet again, people refuse to take salaries into question when evaluating deals. It's unbelievable, really.

Yes, I recognize the value of having a Delgado because at the time nobody else was available. Maybe making that move is better than not making it (that's questionable, because how much worse would the Mets be with Jacobs at first and $13M+ in their pockets?). But the point is the Mets got themselves into the situation where they felt they _had_ to overpay for the Delgado.

Re: Minaya and prospects.

First, the Cliff Lee, Sizemore & Phillips trade was one of the worst trades of all time UNLESS you consider that, by all accounts, the Expos were going to cease to exist at the end of the 2002 season. At the time Omar made that deal, everyone is baseball was convinced that Montreal was going to be contracted in the offseason...so what would've been the point of retaining any prospects?

Second, the Mets have not increased the payroll AT ALL this season, and even more money is coming off next season. Salary dumps like Benson and Cameron (who were overpaid for what they were producing) offset some of the higher-profile, $$$ deals.

On the other hand, while the Mets are now saying that Milledge is untouchable, you have to remember that, in the aftermath of the Delgado trade, it came to light that Minaya offered Florida a choice of Milledge or Petit and they chose the pitcher. So, as recently as three months ago, he wasn't untouchable.

bobo again we differ on opinions if you can get an established player for prospects I do it because attrition will lead to 50% or so of those prospects not panning out. Players in class A have such a high shot of blowing up that they are tradeable. Minaya is not a great GM but I would say hes average if not slightly above. It isnt easy to get people to sign with the mets. The mets have all the pressure of the yankees without the prestige. This offseason Minaya realized that Glavine and Pedro werent going to be pitching much longer so he did what he had to to put the best team possible on the field. He did not have to luxury of waiting for all these prospects to mature.

Here is my list of GM's who are worse than Minaya:
Jim Bowden
Allan Baird
Bill Bavasi
Jim Hendry
Dan O' Dowd

that would have to be my bottom 5 my top 5 would be:
Stoneman
Beane
Williams
Shapiro
Ryan

Minaya is a middle of the pack as far as I am concerned

I forgot to add Scheurholz to the best GM list

Kyle, I said CONTROL, not Contract.

The A's have control of Bradley for 2 years, but he is on a 1 year contract. It has to do with service time, he still has 1 more arbitration year after this season.

But yes, the A's would always take Blue Chip Prospects, but they would probably prefer those BlueChips in the form of Starting Pitching, or a position they are either a) weak in or b) losing someone at.

Right now, the A's are pretty much set at every position. Arguably, you could replace Kendall, but they have Suzuki in the minors who will be ready when Kendall is gone (not that anyone would take him before his contract was up anyways).

I know that the rumor is dead, but just for the sake if argument and bordom, here is the A's lineup and years left under team control (and player ready to step in).

C1: Kendall (2 Years)
1B: Johnson (5 years)
2B: Ellis (3 Years)
SS: Crosby (4 Years)
3B: Chavez (6 Years)
LF: Swisher (5 Years)
RF: Bradley (2 Years)
CF: Kotsay (3 Years)
DH: Thomas (1 Year) (Barton)

SP: Zito (1 Year) (Meyer)
SP: Harden (4 Years)
SP: Haren (5 Years)
SP: Blanton (5 Years)
SP: Loaiza (3 Years)
CL: Street (5 Years)

So the only two positions that are open right now. Designated Hitter/First Base, which will be filled by Daric Barton, and 5th Starter after Zito leaves, which will be filled by one of Dan Meyer (if he comes back to form), Shane Komine or Kirk Saarloos.

Ya I totally understand. And looking at that the A's are going to be good for quite a while

Zito really could come to the Mets next year, because they have something that could draw him: Rick Peterson. He did really well with him in Oakland, so Zito really should consider that next year.

Good point... he did win a Cy Young award with him. If I was him, I might consider that.

In the end, he'll probably sign with the A's. He's always been with that team, and I think he always will be with that team.

about the guy who said best GM's... you've got to put Doug Melvin in the Top 5, he's turned Milwaukee's fortunes totally on the rise and they are set to contend for the playoffs 2006-2010 at least

Whatever you say, A's fan... you can ask Jason Giambi and Miguel Tejada about team loyalty.

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