Olney On Maholm, Carmona, Alderson

Spring Training hasn't begun yet, but ESPN.com's Buster Olney gets a head start on the summer's trade rumors by listing some pitchers who could be available this July. James Shields, Joe Blanton and Edwin Jackson are possible trade candidates, but as Olney points out, it's entirely possible that those starters won't be available and others will be on the block. Here are the details:

  • The perception around the league is that the Pirates have been willing to talk about trading Paul Maholm. The left-hander is likely a year away from free agency, so the Pirates could shop him if they aren't interested in keeping him. Maholm earns $5.75MM this year and after the season the Pirates can exercise a $9.75MM buyout for 2012 or pay a $750K buyout.
  • Fausto Carmona is "going to draw a lot of interest," but the Indians would ask for top prospects in exchange for Carmona who is young (27) and signed to a team-friendly contract. 
  • Justin Masterson will "continue to draw interest because of his past success and his versatility," Olney writes.
  • Olney guesses that Mets GM Sandy Alderson would prefer not to talk to the Wilpons about their financial situation. By avoiding those conversations, Alderson can focus on baseball and avoid being drawn into a legal case.

38 Responses to Olney On Maholm, Carmona, Alderson Leave a Reply

  1. RahZid 4 years ago

    wow, tough choice! Either a $9.75M buyout or a $750K buyout…. I wonder which they will choose.

    (You may want to fix that Ben)

  2. Infield Fly 4 years ago

    Olney guesses that Mets GM Sandy Alderson would prefer not to talk to the Wilpons about their financial situation. By avoiding those conversations, Alderson can focus on baseball and avoid being drawn into a legal case.

    Hmm…if Olney is right, how [long] could such a strategy really work? As GM, Sandy must be thorough and identify all his resources. So it’s hard to believe that he woud be comfortable moving forward without the clearest possible sense of what may be coming, straight from the horse’s mouth — sooner or later. That information could affect his plans for the team’s future.

    • RahZid 4 years ago

      Based on recent comments, it seems like the plan is to cut spend across the board.

      The comment of team payroll being in the $140 – $150M range, which is way above what they would like going forward, comes to mind.

      • Infield Fly 4 years ago

        Yeah, I heard that too, but in the course of this lawsuit things could change, especially since the team itself is one of the businesses targeted by the suit. So I would think the Wilpons & Alderson would need to stay in touch on that score periodically.

  3. Slopeboy 4 years ago

    Wow… The Pirates are actually going to give this a $4MM raise? They’re going to Arb with Orlendorf over $600K, you just know this guy is getting moved.

    • RahZid 4 years ago

      In fairness, they’re going to arb with Orlendorf over $2M+ over the next 3 years, as salaries during arb years are largely based on the previous years salary. Giving him the $600K now, means that it’s built into requests for his next 2 arb years as well.

      • Slopeboy 4 years ago

        Ok. I forgot players never lose money when they go back to Arb the following year. Thanks.

        • RahZid 4 years ago

          No problem. Not saying I agree with the flawed system, but that’s how it works.

  4. Gibbys_Limp 4 years ago

    “James Shields, Joe Blanton and Edwin Jackson are possible trade candidates, but as Olney points out, it’s entirely possible that those starters won’t be available and others will be on the block.”

    Hey Buster, I have one for you. Barry Bonds may possibly officially retire this year, but it’s entirely possible that he won’t officially retire and that others will actually retire instead.

    Here’s another: Mickey Mantle may come back from the dead & play baseball again, but it’s entirely possible that he won’t come back from the dead & play baseball again and that others will come back from injuries & play baseball this year.

    What a “cover-my-ass-at-both-ends-of-the-stick-no-matter-what-I-really-think-will-happen” comment he made. Buster’s so smart.

  5. $1526717 4 years ago

    Edwin Jackson lives on the trading block.

  6. Smrtbusnisman04 4 years ago

    It’s inevitable. The Pirates aren’t going to keep a guy whose XFIP is projected to be in the 4.50s.

    Prediction: Paul Maholm to the Yankees for Andrew Brackman/ Ivan Nova

    Other possible suitors:

    Blue Jays

    • I’m not convinced there’s that many teams who really need Maholm. Career 4.48 ERA… last year 5.10 with an ugly .303 batting average against? No way the Yankees would trade Ivan Nova for that, nor do the Jays have any need for a mediocre starting pitcher with their young depth.

      Maybe the Mets would take him for some depth, but I don’t seem them spending the money right now.

      • Smrtbusnisman04 4 years ago

        Well he is an innings eater. That is his biggest PRO. I was assuming a playoff contender would acquire him not to win games, but to stabilize their rotation depth for the Pennant Race.

        Most likely, the Pirates would only get a single A pitcher/ utility infielder in return

      • $1526717 4 years ago

        His FIP is better than his ERA. He’ll give you a 4.50 ERA in the NL, which has some value.

        I’m not sure I’d trust a move to the AL, but if you need a #4 starter, he’s not too shabby.

        • Smrtbusnisman04 4 years ago

          Maybe if he played in a big ballpark like Seattle, New York, or San Diego.

          I’m worried because I thought he gave up too many line drives last year.

    • Malholm doesn’t pass the “better than Sergio Mitre” test. Probably not even the “better than Ivan Nova” test. I’d rather them spend a little extra on trading for Justin Masterson.

    • Todd Smith 4 years ago

      Just have to hope he starts off the year well and builds up a little value.

      • derekbellstutu 4 years ago

        The Pirates would be wise to keep Maholm to start the season. If he has a decent season and establishes some value, there’s no reason why the Dodgers won’t make a run for him at the trade deadline. It worked last year when the Bucs dealt Octavio Dotel to L.A.

  7. Sniderlover 4 years ago

    “Fausto Carmona is “going to draw a lot of interest,” but the Indians would ask for top prospects in exchange for Carmona”

    Lol, good luck getting a top prospect.

    • MB923 4 years ago

      Seriously. There is no way Carmona is worth top prospects. Maybe if they traded him after 07 he would be, but not today.

      • I don’t think the point of the statement was to say that he was worth top prospects, but that getting blown away by a top offer that includes top prospects is the only way the Indians are going to trade him.

        • MB923 4 years ago

          Of course from the Indians standpoint, that’s what you would want, but I think it would be a mistake for any team to trade multiple top prospects for him. I’m not saying Carmona is bad, but he certainly isn’t great.

        • MB923 4 years ago

          Well I don’t blame the Indians for wanting that, but I don’t think it would be a smart move to trade top prospects for Carmona. I think he’s a good pitcher, but not a great pitcher.

          Edit- Forgot I replied already LOL

      • sportsnut969 4 years ago

        You are right, I’m a Indians fan but also a overall baseball fan. The problem with the Media and fans in Cleveland they think just becasue Carmona is the #1 in the rotation in Cleveland by default that this automatically makes him a Front Of The Rotaion pitcher.
        But in the real world out side of the Greater Northeaast Ohio area this is not the case. The facts are on a team like the Yankees or Red Sox he is at best a 4 or 5 starter.
        One a team like the Dodgers, White Sox or Reds he is at best a #3 starter.

        I do believe that Carmona will not bring a top 5 prospect. I do how ever believe he may well bring 1 between a team 6 and 10 rankings, + 1 players between a teams 11 – 20 prosepct rankings and a couple of Fringe prosepct these guys would be guys outside the top 20 prospects and most likely they would be A ballers or Hi A ballers in 2011.

        The Problems with the National rumors is they lake the #5-10 prospect to even get the trade talks off the ground, they do how ever have the tailend of a deal the fringe A ballers.

        • If the offer for Carmona isn’t overwhelming, the Indians have no motivation of reason to trade him. Carmona possesses the BEST sinker in baseball..that is his weapon as he generates scores of ground balls.. leads the league (or close ) in inducing double play grounders.. etc.. While he’s not a League Ace, he is the ace of the Indians starting rotation.

      • First off… you can’t turn the clock back.. and see comment attributed tp sportsnut969 below..

        • MB923 4 years ago

          “First off… you can’t turn the clock back”. That’s exactly the point I was making, he’s not who he was in 2007.

          “and see comment attributed tp sportsnut969 below.. “- This makes no sense. He agreed with me and said I was right and gave further detail about it. If he agrees with me, why are you using his comments to prove your point and act as if I’m wrong?

    • The Indians don’t need luck.. just a team that sees Fausto as what he is.. a solid MLB starter, the ace of the Cleveland Indians pitching staff, a young 27 years old and a pitcher that takes the ball every fifth day and gives you innings…

      • MB923 4 years ago

        I agree, he’s a solid starter. Not much more but he’s still a guy I’d take of course in a 3 or 4 slot.

  8. indybucfan 4 years ago

    But then, when the Pirates do trade Maholm, it’s always about money, instead of the fact that he’s just not that good.

  9. bucsws2014 4 years ago

    Maholm, perhaps not surprisingly, is fairly effective in the NL Central. Last 3 years he posted a 1.30 WHIP and 3.76 ERA within the division. The NL East and Colorado kills him, so if the FO is smart, they find ways to keep him out of those games. And they don’t play Texas this year. So with a bit of ingenuity, it’s possible a strategy can be concocted to make his numbers look really good and increase his trade value.

    • pirates will not get anything for maholm he will be non tendered at the end of the season and some one will get him for a song and he will become a real pitcher with another team.face the facts the pirates will trade people like Cutch, alvarez for utility inf and money

  10. Maholm is not wirth anything but a utility inf, and the pirates will take it since they need salary relief. hahaha pirates think they would get joba for maholm more like,ramiro pena and a bucket of baseballs

  11. MB923 4 years ago

    I do not think that’s what I said. I think it would be mistake for a team to trade top prospects (as in more than 1) for him.

  12. MB923 4 years ago

    So let’s say the Red Sox were in need of a starter and the Indians were in need of a SS in a couple of years or so, would you think they should trade Iglesias for Carmon?

  13. Ineffectiveness was due to inability to command his fastball.. he was not injured. He was also in the process of developing his third pitch.. it took some time. His 2010 was encouraging..

  14. MB923 4 years ago


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