Stark On Zambrano, Beltran, Keppinger, Torre

Owners want a rigid slotting system like the ones in the NFL and the NBA, but ESPN.com's Jayson Stark finds it hard to believe that the MLBPA would agree to hard slotting, since it has traditionally avoided caps of any kind. One National League executive compared baseball's current slotting system to “traffic lights in the Dominican,” since he doesn’t know “what they're even there for." A hard slotting system would give teams the certainty of pre-determined bonuses, but the MLBPA wouldn't like it. Here are the rest of Stark's rumors:

  • One executive believes the Cubs could find a taker for Carlos Zambrano this winter as long as they take on most of the big righty's salary, but another executive says there's no way the Cubs could trade Big Z.
  • Executives are similarly divided on Carlos Beltran. One says trading him is "impossible," but another would take a flier on Beltran, partly because he's headed into a contract year.
  • Jeff Keppinger was claimed on waivers, so the Astros cannot trade him this month.
  • A longtime acquaintance of Joe Torre's expects the manager to sign with the Mets this winter.


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26 Comments on "Stark On Zambrano, Beltran, Keppinger, Torre"


5 years 10 days ago

Now you know K-Rod ain’t coming back if Torre signs with the Mets

5 years 10 days ago

I have no interest in Torre as Mets manager. Id much rather they just go with someone like Backman. We’ve had the same quite type of manager for years now with Willie Randolph and Jerry Manuel. I want a change up.

YaGottaBelieve11
5 years 10 days ago

I hear what you are saying there but come on.. It’s Joe torre. If he can’t win with this team then you know it’s time to clean house

5 years 10 days ago

What makes Torre get the elevated stature. He did well with a yankees team that had the highest payroll around. He certainly hasnt done much with a very talented Dodgers team

YaGottaBelieve11
5 years 10 days ago

Mets have had two managers in a row with no track record. Why are you willing to just hand the job to backman who has no major league experience managing a team?

BaseballFanatic0707
5 years 10 days ago

Joe Torre is not a good baseball manager. He’s a good media manager. He’s great at handling the media and taking the heat for his players. As a baseball person? Mediocre, at best.

5 years 10 days ago

The Mets need to throw $10 million per season at a player, not a manager.

5 years 10 days ago

For the love of God, no Torre. The man is a carbon copy of Jerry, except worse.

wright1970
5 years 10 days ago

carbon copy of Jerry?? Torre knows NL strategies and doesnt make too many miscues whereas Jerry doesnt make too many good decisions. Plus, because of his track record, he would command and get the respect from all of the locker room!! Also, he might know a good hitting coach that he can recruit to come with him.

5 years 10 days ago

You’re joking, right? Torre has an obvious bias towards veterans, calls for the bunt a lot, and is by far the worst manager of bullpens in baseball. Proctor, Sturtze, Hitchcock, and at least half the pitchers in the Dodgers bullpen…all ruined by Torre.

HerbertAnchovy
5 years 10 days ago

His track record says otherwise.

diehardmets
5 years 10 days ago

Torre appeals to me, simply because of his track record. He’s been very successful as a manger.

However, I would like a manager with some more fire, like Backman. I want to see the Mts get fired up and get in brawls like the Red Sox and Reds(not for the sake of fighting, but because it’s a great way to get pumped up).

5 years 10 days ago

I wonder if Torre will interview with the Chicago Cubs.

Devern Hansack
5 years 10 days ago

Keppinger would make a perfect platoon-mate for Skip Schumaker.

5 years 10 days ago

if Milton Bradley has been trade more than once then they can be traded

baseball52
5 years 10 days ago

Zambrano for Beltran! haha

Ray R
5 years 10 days ago

I can see Torre going to the Mets, if no other reason than to stick it to Brian Cashman. He won’t win – no manager can with the Mets talent and dysfunctional front office – but the Mets would rule the back pages for the winter.

Slopeboy
5 years 10 days ago

Torre isn’t coming to the Mets unless he can get players. The Wilpons will have to pay him big money. The Wilpons spend enough money to compete but not enough to win. While they spent 60MM this past winter on Bay, that’s all the went for, instead of going for starting pitching, they stood pat. They were lucky that they found Takahashi and RA Dickey to replace Maine and Perez, but with the opportunity to get a starter at the trading deadline, again they stood pat. Instead of eating some amount of the contracts of Perez and/or Castillo in some trade, again they’ve done nothing. The Mets have too many issues coming up with Franceour, Beltran, K-Rod, Maine, Minaya et.al that need to be addressed over the winter. Torre already has a legacy and plenty of money, he is not young anymore and doesn’t need to come to the Mets, especially if it looks as if failure is in the future. When you add the NY media running wild with the story of him returning to jab the Yankees from across town, it would be a really pressure packed situation that he really doesn’t need. If the Wilpons decided to get players and clean house where there are needs, it would make a little more sense for Joe to go home. But looking at the Mets track record, that’s not happening anytime soon.

Infield Fly
5 years 10 days ago

Torre? I’d rather see Lou Piniella take over – if he’s willing. Sweet Lou may not be a miracle worker but at the very least he would bring a sense of discipline, and send the message that complacency will no longer be tolerated.

5 years 10 days ago

You know Zambrano will get traded. Ryne Sandberg, Joe Torre, Bob Brenly all have been players. Brenly and Torre have been W.S. champs. Ryno is leading AAA Iowa Cubs to a great season. No way in hell are those 3 gonna put up with Big Z’s bull malarkey. Brenly knows as he said when Z went off against the White Sox ” This has been a dead ass team for awhile now and he is a reason cause of it” I would love to see Brenly as a manager of the Cubs, but miss him in the booth. Len Kasper is Ok but Brenly tells it like it is. Also, is hilarious.

mgsports
5 years 10 days ago

He has been claimed to who ever claimed him can try to work out a Trade with the Astros only if the Astros didn’t pull him back meaning if put back on Waviers would lose him then.

coldgoldenfalstaff
5 years 10 days ago

Glad Keppinger was claimed for the Astros own good.

The guy has been fantastic this season, and he’s the kind of low-cost player they need to hold onto as they rebuild.

YanksFanSince78
5 years 10 days ago

As much as I like Torre I think he’s much more of a manager of players and personalities than he is an “x” and “o” kind of guy. But honestly, baseball much more than any other sport relies less on the manager/coach than it does on the players. A manager’s main responsibilities are to evaluate the talent of the team, relay the wants and needs to improve the team to the GM, make in game decisions in terms in terms of pitching changes and strategies imployed w/ men on base, manage the personalities, protect them from the media and stay in the forefrunt as the face of the team. But at the end of the day he can’t hit or pitch against the opponent. Torre can do most of the above for the most part. I sort of question his ability to relate to younger players and I don’t think he’s so great when it comes to building a bullpen.

The main reason why the Mets should pass on Torre is simply because they are not a very talented team. I think anyone who feels this team can be a “serious” contender, meaning a 95-100 win team next year, is kidding themselves. To bring Torre in would be doing what’s failed the Mets for the last couple of years…..compete for headlines with the Yankees and make another short term decision. A team built around Wright, Reyes, Sananta, Bay, I.D and Beltran is about a 80-85 win team and I would not suggest that the Mets should spend wildly this winter to just patch up holes. At some point they have to really think in terms of today and the next 4 years.

As for Torre, why ruin the NY legacy by joinging the Mets. Can you imagine the horror if the team continues to fall short of being NL East champs? Or even worse, if they struggle to be a .500 team? To compete against the Yanks in the NY media where victories are only overshadowed by controversy? I don’t think it would be wise for Torre to do that. If anything I see Torre headed to a team like St. Louis if La Russa decides not to retyurn. Cards are a solid contender built around veterans which is perfect for Torre. The fact that he was once a star player there makes it a good story as well.

YanksFanSince78
5 years 10 days ago

People are crazy if they feel like Z or Beltran are untradeable. It’s all a matter of how much the Cubs and Mets are willing to eat. Look at guys like Milton Bradley, Manny and Terell Owens, no matter how much negativity is written about them they always find a team that wants them. Why? because they perform.

If the Cubs are willing to eat $25 mil of the $36 owed to Z for 2011 and 2012 (I doubt his 2013 will vest) then I can see a team acquiring Z assuming a change of scenery would help him. Also, considering that after Cliff Lee, Ted Lilly and Jake Westborook highlight the best of the rest, then Z becomes a lot more appealing.

As for Beltra, that’s a little more iffy, but again, if the Mets are willing to eat $10 mil of his $18.5 mil or take a bad contract back in exchange then I can see him being moved for a small package of non-elite prospects. Beltran, if he can stay healthy thru the rest of this seaosn, should be motivated to be ready for 2011 in search of another multi-year deal. He’s “only” 34 next year and an AL team can probably squeeze 70-80 games out of him in the field and another 70-80 as a DH.

Slopeboy
5 years 7 days ago

Your previous post was right on the money. What you say here makes sense for an organization that is truly looking to compete. unfortunately for Mets fans, the Mets will not eat any money.They’ve kept Castillo on the roster because they owe him this year and 6 Mil next, not to mention Perez. They cut Cora to avoid the vesting for next year.All the Wilpons want is to sucker people into Citi Field and pretend to compete. They sent Barajas to LA for ‘cash considerations’. They will not make any transactions where they have to spend or eat contracts.

YaGottaBelieve11
5 years 10 days ago

I guess i missed when torre became a poor manager. Go ahead. Hire backman. Howard johnson is working out really well as the mets hitting coach. Obviously hiring a format met is the answer at manager just like he was the answer to our hitting woes the past 3 seasons.