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Rubin: Mets Could Get Garcia Or Vazquez

According to Adam Rubin of the New York Daily News, the Mets may be able to acquire Freddy Garcia or Javier Vazquez from the White Sox.  He says:

"The White Sox have been calling around to clubs - including the Mets - letting it be known that Javier Vazquez or Freddy Garcia would be available. The price: top-notch relief help, which would allow the Sox to fortify their bullpen leading to closer Bobby Jenks, sources told the Daily News. Chicago has 23-year-old Brandon McCarthy ready to step into its rotation."

Seems like relievers are the hot ticket item of this particular trading season.  They're always a popular deadline commodity but the price seemed quite high yesterday.  My Mets source is adamant that New York would not give up Duaner Sanchez (2.45 ERA, 1.24 WHIP, 6.4 K/9) for Garcia or Vazquez.  He tells me that Aaron Heilman is an option.  To me, sounds like just the pitcher Don Cooper could fix after he's stumbled a bit this season.

This year, the Mets have seen fine work from Heath Bell (0.83 ERA in 21 Triple A innings plus a 3.68 ERA in 22 big league innings) and Royce Ring (1.53 ERA in 29 Triple A innnings).  Henry Owens jumped up from Double A after 25 innings of 1.08 ball.

Rubin's story also indicates that the Sox could have some interest in Tom Gordon, the best reliever on the trade market.  Flash has pitched for both Chicago teams.  He posted a 3.16 ERA, 1.19 WHIP, 12 saves, and 11.0 K/9 in 74 innings for the Sox back in 2003.

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I think it would be pretty funny/sad (depending on your point of view) if the ChiSox get Ring in a trade, seeing as how he was given away for a rental of Roberto Alomar a few years ago.

i find it interesting that the Mets are showing interest in Abreu i still think he will be a red sox but........

http://www.nypost.com/sports/yankees/yankees_and_mets_both_inquire_about_abreu_yankees_joel_sherman.htm

It might be sort of ironic, but that's it, because since the Royce Ring trade, the Sox have a world championship, created in no small part through Williams' deal making - and Everett was the DH on that team - so lamenting small deals that didn't help much is pointless.
The Sox don't want Ring anyway.

Yeah...it's tough to criticize KW given what he has created. Watch him spin one of those pitchers into something sweet.

I wouldnt mind the Phillies moving Gordon, but if hes headed back to Chicago, Josh Fields better be heading to Philly. Abreu to the Mets makes me puke, but it wont happen without giving up Pelfrey or Milledge.

Having Abreu's picture plastered on the front page of the NY newspapers this morning was the best possible thing for the Phillies. Minaya is dumb enough to give away his best prospects, and I think Cashman will part with Hughes when the dust settles. The division winner is likely the only one making the playoffs in the AL East this year, Big Stein wont allow them to sit on their hands, and he certainly wont allow the Sox, let alone the Mets, to steal Abreu from him.

This couldnt work out better for the Phillies.

"Minaya is dumb enough to give away his best prospects"

And you're dumb enough to believe that...

To be fair, if a bad trade should ever happen, i'd be dumb enough to find another team to root for. I'm thinking the Marlins or Devil Rays. Both have their share of former Mets, so I can't go wrong.

Personally, I wouldn't trust Javier Vazquez down the stretch. He is not a consistently good pitcher anymore. However, the Mets need another starter, and the White Sox need some relief help, so I can definitely see a Heilman-Vazquez swap.

And Maybe it's just me, but I see the Red Sox going after starting pitching before going after Abreu. And even then, I don't predict either. The Red Sox don't have any glaring weaknesses.

Kramerica, The red sox aren't seriously going after Abreu, they're driving up his market price, basically forcing the yankees to panic up their bid to include hughes. It's either revenge by Theo because Cashman tried to block the Mirabelli trade, or just plain old simple market tactics. Besides from what I heard Gillick told the Sox he would want Lester for Abreu.

And no, Minaya is not stupid, restless, but not stupid. So I wouldn't be suprised if the mets make a serious bid for Garcia. But considering pitching is a hot commodity, Mats may have to pay up big.

If your the Phils do you give Abreu to the Yanks for Tabata, and them picking up his entire salary? I don't see what else Cashman is willing to deal for Abreu other than Tabata, and I'm not sure if he would deal him period, the kid has the makings of a superstar.


The only reason I see Boston going after Abreu would be too keep him from the Yankees, but the salary pickup that is required, and the having to pick up his option years in order to get him to waive the no trade doesn't seem worth it. Trot Nixon is the Boston Red Sox, if they let him go there will be such an uproar. He epitomizes everything the front off wants from their team, character, leadership, he's an OBP machine. Platooning Pena with Nixon against lefties is a good deal, Trot will be back next year Abreu isn't a Boston style player.

"... Aaron Heilman is an option. To me, sounds like just the pitcher Don Cooper could fix after he's stumbled a bit this season.

This year, the Mets have seen fine work from Heath Bell (0.83 ERA in 21 Triple A innings plus a 3.68 ERA in 22 big league innings) and Royce Ring (1.53 ERA in 29 Triple A innnings). Henry Owens jumped up from Double A after 25 innings of 1.08 ball."

I don't see the point of this logic. If Heilman would be attractive enough to acquire Garcia or Vazquez, and the Mets have the bullpen help to compensate (and don't underestimate Henry Owens--he's very, very good), then why wouldn't they just solve their problem in-house and move Heilman to the rotation?

IMO, Heilman is a far better option than Vazquez, and he's much younger with much better upside as a starter than Freddy Garcia, and much more cost-effective, to boot...

Abreu isnt a Boston style player? Hes near the very top of the lead in on base % and is a doubles machine who also happens to be bad defensively.....he seems to fit into their OF mold.

I could definitely be wrong but I don't think Heilman's stuff will hold up a few times through the order. Or at least, I think the Mets feel that way.

"I could definitely be wrong but I don't think Heilman's stuff will hold up a few times through the order. Or at least, I think the Mets feel that way."

Yep. And lately, he's lost significant velocity off hit fastball. It used to sit in the 93-95 range, now it sits in the high-80's. If you can get a Freddy Garcia, it has to be done, especially with the Mets ludicrous bullpen depth.

http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/story/5770502

It seems to me that "The Red Sox inquired about Phillies right fielder Bobby Abreu, but the talks apparently failed to progress — even though a rival GM describes the Sox's interest in Abreu as "very strong.""

So Rosenthal thinks the Red Sox have a chance as do I.

"Besides from what I heard Gillick told the Sox he would want Lester for Abreu."

Gillick wants to trade Abreu because of his salary
they are not getting rid of that salary and getting a Jon Lester from Boston a Ervin Santana from LA or a Hughes from New York like that was reported he asked for from those teams and the Yankees and Angels said thanks but No thanks

Thats fine, then Gillick should just keep Abreu and Gordon if teams dont want to get serious about it. Contrary to popular belief in the mainstream press, the Yankees, Red Sox and Mets dont just go shopping and take what they want, while giving the other team nothing. Abreu has a large contract, but he also produces. If Gillick just dumps his salary, hes a moron. Abreu is a ridiculously consistent hitter, but ESPN seems to think the HR derby ruined him. What they DONT realize is that Abreu hit 9 of his 18 HR in the first half last season in a 10 day span. Hes never been a bigtime HR hitter, hes a line drive hitter, hence all of the doubles he racks up every year. If he were "declining" or "slumping", I dont think he'd be near the top of the league in OB%, walks, and doubles and have double digit stolen bases. The fact is, he isnt hitting home runs, thats it. Hes still scoring runs and still driving them in, and his BA with RISP is fantastic again this year.

"Thats fine, then Gillick should just keep Abreu and Gordon if teams dont want to get serious about it. Contrary to popular belief in the mainstream press, the Yankees, Red Sox and Mets dont just go shopping and take what they want, while giving the other team nothing"

I dont think anyone was saying the Phillies should get nothing for Abreu or Gordon but they cant ask for a Kings ransom and have them take on a 16 million dollars. they wont get a lester or a hughes or Santana (unless a GM is stupid)for hime but maybe a package of second tear prospects like Mathis,Mcphersan and others from LA or Jacob Ellsbury, Edgar Martinez and a replacemet for Abreu Nixon for Abreu were along the deals i was thinking about. I was suggesting you give up Abreu for nothing just take on the salary like the bosox did with Lowell

"I don't see the point of this logic. If Heilman would be attractive enough to acquire Garcia or Vazquez, and the Mets have the bullpen help to compensate (and don't underestimate Henry Owens--he's very, very good), then why wouldn't they just solve their problem in-house and move Heilman to the rotation?"

Because Heilman as a starter wouldn't be all that good. He lacks a great breaking pitch other than his changeup, and he is hit harder by teams the 2nd or 3rd time through the order. He has increased velocity (93-94 MPH) as a relief pitcher which is what makes him a quality reliever. Take that down to 90-92 MPH and it's obvious why he excelled once he moved to the pen.

Why have they never bothered to convert him back to a starter? It would take time to stretch him out, as he wouldn't be able to pitch more than 4-5 innings right now. Heilman also rarely uses his slider as a reliever, so he'd have to go back to that as a starter (which would put additional strain on his arm). That kind of change simply isn't something you do midseason, it's something you have to prep for in the offseason.

"IMO, Heilman is a far better option than Vazquez, and he's much younger with much better upside as a starter than Freddy Garcia, and much more cost-effective, to boot..."

Heilman hasn't been facing the stacked AL lineups those two have. Josh Beckett is a young ace, and just look at how his conversion to the AL has gone, leading the league in homers. Heilman isn't as good as Beckett, he's a #4 or 5 starter. Giving chances to unproven young guys like Pelfrey, Soler, and Maine isn't exactly a bad thing when you're up 12 in the division.

By saying not a Boston type, I meant they have said over the past two years that they want real strong character type players around, less "idiot" more Varitek. Manny being Manny not with standing moving Nixon the epitomy of what they want, to get Abreu a man who has been characterized unfairly or not as not a leader, and unconcerned with winning, doesn't make much sense. Abreu has been a great fantasy player, but having watched him for years I'm not a big fan.

"I think Cashman will part with Hughes when the dust settles".

Silliness. Hughes is the top pitching prospect in baseball. He isn't going anywhere, especially for Abreu. The Yanks are probably the only team willing to take on Abreu's salary + guarantee his option (which will be a prerequisite for him waiving his no trade clause). I see the Yankees getting Abreu for Melky Cabrera, TJ Beam and Dunkin with them assuming the whole contract and guaranteing the option year.

"Hughes is the top pitching prospect in baseball. He isn't going anywhere."

My thoughts on Hughes/Pitching Prospects:

I've heard Hughes compared to Doc [Gooden]. I'm going to say this about Hughes, "That's preposterous, the Gooden comparison. Felix Hernandez is the only pitcher in the last 20 years who was remotely comparable to Gooden, and even Hernandez has had his problems. Hughes is an excellent prospect and I believe Cashman is sincere about keeping him. But if he belonged to any other franchise he'd be just another Grade A pitching prospect."

So yeah, he's good. But his HR/9 rate isn't as dominant as i'd like it. And as we all know, that's a very important part of projecting a pitcher's future. His fastball didn't look all that impressive, that is to say, all velocity and no movement.

Before we label Hughes/McCarthy/King Felix the second coming, it's important to remember Prior and Wood.

I'd rather have Homer Bailey, and also these guys are only the top pitching prospects in baseball because tons of guys got called up already (Billingsley, Lester, Gorzelanny, others).

"Billingsley, Lester, Gorzelanny"

I really like Lester. I mean, REALLY. He steps his game up with RISP. I saw him drop a filthy curve to Sugar Pants (David Wright) after a 9-pitch battle. That kind of poise simply cannot be taught. Also, while Lester's control hasn't been great thus far, he's always "around" the plate, just missing by an inch here and there. I also love his HR rate. I'd take him in a second over Billingsley and Gorzelanny.

I believe Hughes is the youngest pitcher at that level, so there's plenty of time for improvement. Unless the Yankees get blown away by an offer such as Liriano or Johan Santana (not happening) I feel confident that Cashman will not trade Hughes this year. Do you realize that the last first rounder that even played for the Yankees, was Jeter? WHATTHEFECK??? With that in mind and also considering the question marks in their rotation going forward, Hughes is a keeper.

"Hughes is a keeper."

Nobody is debating that. What I was suggesting is that he wouldn't be the first pitching prospect to flame out due to injury. To compare ANY pitcher to a position prospect in terms of "certainty" is folly. If you look at the minor league numbers of the truly great pitchers, you'll see that Hughes' are better than most, but that's just it... numbers don't mean jack. That is to say, many pitchers had great minor league careers only to fail for one reason or another. Conversely, many prospects, like Greg Maddux, had downright mediocre numbers, but turned out to be HOFers.

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