Quick Hits: Wilson, Allen, Swisher, Maholm, Tigers

Ten years ago today, the Angels signed Alberto Callaspo as an amateur free agent out of Venezuela. He spent four years in their farm system before being traded to the Diamondbacks for Jason Bulger. After a stint with the Royals, Callaspo ended up back with the Halos following a mid-summer trade last year.

Here are today's batch of links…

  • MLBTR's Ben Nicholson-Smith appeared on this week's edition of the Beyond The Box Score Podcast, so head on over and give it a listen.
  • C.J. Wilson told MLB.com's T.R. Sullivan that he's not thinking about his upcoming free agency, mentioning that the Rangers has never offered him a long-term deal.
  • The Russell Branyan signing seems to indicate that the Diamondbacks don't see Brandon Allen as a fit anymore, says Nick Piecoro of The Arizona Republic (Twitter links). He adds that Arizona gauged Allen's trade value at the winter meetings, and he's heard that the Rays were high on him in the past.
  • Yankees outfielder Nick Swisher said he and former agent Joe Bick "just grew apart," which is why he signed on with Dan Lozano recently, reports Ken Davidoff of Newsday.
  • Blue Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos told MLB.com's Gregor Chisholm that he's not a fan of performance-based incentives because of the uncertainty they create.
  • Paul Maholm told Rob Biertempfel of The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review that he's willing to discuss an extension with the Pirates, which pleasantly surprised GM Neal Huntington. "Paul's done some good things for this organization," said the GM. "We'll give it due consideration." The team holds a $9.75MM club option for Maholm's services in 2012 after he earns $5.75MM in 2011.
  • John Lowe of The Detroit Free Press points out that there is no dead weight on the Tigers' $105MM payroll. Detroit paid close to $24MM for Nate Robertson and Dontrelle Willis last season, who gave them 43 1/3 IP with a 4.98 ERA (all by Willis).
  • Larry Stone of The Seattle Times spoke to Yankees GM Brian Cashman about last summer's near trade for Cliff Lee. Cashman said he's glad he didn't agree to Seattle's revised offer after seeing Lee sign with Philadelphia. "Now I'm like, I've got one of the premier hitting talents here, and I didn't have a two-month rental," said the GM, referring to top prospect Jesus Montero.

42 Responses to Quick Hits: Wilson, Allen, Swisher, Maholm, Tigers Leave a Reply

  1. “Anthoupolos also said he’s not a fan of performance-based incentives because of the uncertainty they create.”

    What uncertainty do they create? The uncertainty of how much money you give him? I think the uncertainty Anthoupolos should be concerned about is Bautista’s performance. With a player like Bautista, you have to give him an incentive based contract because he needs to prove that last year wasn’t a fluke. He put up career numbers in basically every category, and I wouldn’t pay a guy big bucks for 1 years worth of performance. Make the contract incentive based so that if he sucks (like he did every year before last year), then you don’t lose money on a bad contract. If he plays well again and shows that last year wasn’t an outlier, then he deserves a big paycheck.

    • Janssen 4 years ago

      If the player does not perform well, and his playing time is reduced, it allows the player to make claims that his playing time is being reduced to avoid paying him extra money. Or in the case of the Frank Thomas contract, avoid a vesting option.

      Since the only incentives allowed by the CBA are things like ABs and starts, there is no way to avoid paying the extra money if the player starts to regress, other then to bench them.

      This is the kind of problem AA is talking about, and the example he has used in the past, most recently in an interview on PTS on the Fan last month.

      • Yankee_Baal 4 years ago

        Performance based contracts works wonders for Boston because they don’t have a real upper ceiling on salaries. For teams with a ceiling, the possible increase of contracts must be accounted for and could also become a possible constraint as to how high the payroll could go.

        • Janssen 4 years ago

          The same could be argued for Toronto, as we keep getting reminded that they don’t actually have a traditional payroll structure. But that didn’t stop the Frank Thomas thing from causing negative publicity. Thomas felt he was being denied playing time (and then was dumped altogether) because the team was afraid of letting him play too much and triggering his vesting option.

          Either way, as Gregor Chisholm reminded people today, what AA really said was that he would rather give the player slightly more guaranteed money just to avoid the possible isseus, whatever they may be. I have a hard time imagining a player who would not rather have the money up front.

  2. Exposfan 4 years ago

    Hope Maholm does not expect the same salary! With a team option at 9,75M, if he gets an extension, it’s because he has been non-tendered first

    • DrRickRollins 4 years ago

      I wonder what sort of number Maholm has on his mind(not the organization’s mind)…something around 3/18~21?

    • Todd Smith 4 years ago

      I don’t know that Maholm really fits into the team plans long term at any price. A lot of pitching coming up through the system soon. I’d rather see him traded at the deadline this year to make room for one of Morris, Owens or Locke.

  3. RahZid 4 years ago

    If the Yankees had traded for Lee, Cashman would be saying that it was worth it because they would have won the World Series, or at the very least made it to the WS.

  4. InLeylandWeTrust 4 years ago

    I would definitely consider Carlos Guillen dead weight, though obviously not to the degree of Bonderman Willis or Robertson.

    • Maybe not. Los Carlos can still hit when he’s healthy. 2011, the way I look at his contract and the way that I said so at the time he signed it, was an extra year added for about $ 3- 5 MM. Sure, it was too long, but the model contracts at the time were Tejada and Michael Young, who got longer deals or more money. Guillen back loaded his deal somewhat and stretched it out a year. In that light, anything he gives the Tigers in 2011 will be gravy on the cake!

  5. RedSoxDynasty 4 years ago

    Cashman backtracking here! If he gets Lee and wins a championship he’d say it was one of the best moves he ever made! Real men don’t make excuses for their failures and man up to them! Not to mention if he landed Lee in a trade it may have inclined him to stay in NY as well! There’s no such thing as a bad trade if it helps win a title no matter how good the traded player turns out to be( cue Hanley Ramirez)!

    • Karkat 4 years ago

      Also, I think it’s far from a given that Lee still would have signed with the Phillies if the Yankees had acquired him mid-season. Lee would have gotten comfortable there, his wife wouldn’t have been harassed, and he would have spent plenty of time with his old pal CC. This is Cashman trying to find a silver lining that only tenuously exists.

      • ChicaOnDeck 4 years ago

        There’s no guarantee that Cliff would have stayed with the yankees. We can only go by what happened. He said he enjoyed playing with the rangers/made friends & even after nolan and crew visited him that last time (believe it was a Thursday), Cliff still didn’t sign. People keep focusing on him not going to the yankees, but the fact is he left the rangers, whom he had much more personal bonds with.

        So I don’t see how we can assume he would have stayed with the yankees. Maybe he would have, maybe not. But as I watched this, my first reaction was disappointment that he didn’t sign with Yankees (although 7 years had the potential to be disasterous)… My immediate next reaction (as a yankees fan) was “thank goodness we didn’t give up montero and crew for a guy was was never going to stay and hamper the yanks for making a possible trade”.

        But all in all, he went where he wanted to go and good for him. No hard feelings here. I’m just relieved we didn’t make that trade from my perspective.

        People can choose to look at it as back peddling by cashman, but I had the same reaction. This whole IF they had cliff Lee and won the WS blah blah blah… there’s no guarantee the yankees would have won the ws either. The giants were great. Give them credit.

    • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

      I don’t think it’s back tracking at all. And not acquiring Lee isn’t a failure. You can;t put a gun to his head and MAKE him sign. No one knows what Lee might have thought about NY. It could’ve played out either way. The Rangers had Lee and they still didn’t win. I think Cashman was really speaking to how great Lee thought of Philly. It obvious that money was the biggest criteria or else he would be a Texas Ranger.

      • I think the failure, if anything, was not having a back up plan. The Yanks still have a contender, and there’s a lot of baseball to be played, with more than one or two pitchers that will become available should their rotation come up short. Judge the man after the season on the moves that he made.

        • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

          I can’t even fault Cashman. You can’t create what is not there. Yanks don’t need to trade for a #4 or #5 guy. You don’t miss out on Lee and try to make up for it by signing DeLaRosa or Kurado. Ppl act as if Cashman lacks the ability to multi-task and history shows that isn’t so. Once Cashman felt that the asking price for Greinke was too great when weighed against his “issues” then who else was there for him to acquire?

          I’d rather he make no moves than to make one just to make one.

    • Guest 4 years ago

      Umm no. Lee slowed down in the playoffs, there is no guarantee they would have won.

      Lee did not resign with the Rangers & he enjoyed his time there. He went to the NL where he faces light hitting lineups & less wear/tear on his body. Plus, he still has a very good chance of winning a World Series.

      If Cashman had gotten the deal done & then lost him in FA you & the Nation would have killed him then.

      • bjsguess 4 years ago


        ALDS/ALCS stats: 24IP / 13 Hits / 1 BB / 34 K’s / 2 ER

        Those are historic numbers. Not good, not great, not even amazing. You are talking about 3 of the best games ever pitched in the playoffs. That included an 8 inning, 2 hit, 13 K, 1 BB shutout against the Yankees.

        Lee struggled against the Giants in the WS but outside of those few games against SF, Lee has proven to be one of the very best post-season pitchers in baseball history.

  6. No dead weight on the Tiger roster? Let’s see how Jhonny Peralta does this season.

    • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

      $5 mil for a guy who can give you 15-20 hrs and play a few positions isn’t a classic example of “dead weight”. Robertson and Willis gave the Tigers NOTHING last year except a reason to cross off the days to the end of the season and their fiscal responsibilities to those players.

      • Dude, you don’t gotta tell me about Dombrowski’s bad contracts. $ 80 million in contracts that no other team would take off his hands had to be the league leader in 2009 and 2010. But I believe the point was that they had NO dead weight in 2011. That remains to be seen!

        BTW- I believe your neighbors up at Taxpayer field now hold the mantle for most “bad” contracts on the books for 2011. Not the current GM’s fault though.

        • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

          I certainly wasn’t arguing who had the most. But Peralta would have to be dog awful inorder to be dead weight. If he hits 15-20 hrs and sports a .260/.330 avg then he would’ve come pretty close to holding his value.

    • InLeylandWeTrust 4 years ago

      I think you mean Guillen…Peralta makes me all giddy inside compared to Adam Everett…

  7. “Now I’m like, I’ve got one of the premier hitting talents here, and I didn’t have a two-month rental,” said the GM,

    Is he trying to send a msg to the Rangers again? Because im sure he wanted to be in that WS last year.

  8. baybombers 4 years ago

    damn it i left my car lights on for an hour and a half

  9. lefty177 4 years ago

    “Now I’m like, I’ve got one of the premier hitting talents here, and I didn’t have a two-month rental,”

    “…and then she was like…, and then he was all…”

  10. Crackis4lovers 4 years ago

    I always assumed the Yankees would have negotiated an extension with Lee as the Mets did when they traded for Santana. Maybe I missed the news that Lee was determined to test free agency. Cashman is a smart guy and a very good GM. Unless Lee stated otherwise they could have locked him up as a condition of the trade.

  11. Edgar4evar 4 years ago

    So Cashman whines endlessly about Seattle taking Lee off the table at the last minute and NOW he says he’s glad he didn’t do the deal. What a load of crap. He wanted that deal. Of course now he’d rather have Montero than not have him. But he was dying to swap him for what he hoped would be another WS title and a chance to sign Lee after the season. He got neither. This is saving face, nothing more.

    • Guest 4 years ago

      No its reality. Lee never felt comfortable going to NY that is why he signed with the Phillies among other reasons (ease of lineups, less wear/tear, better chance to win in less talented division). If Sea had pulled the trigger on the trade it would have meant 4-5 of the Yankees best prospects going away essentially for a player they owned for 2 months. How would that have looked?

      It would have been an extremely expensive bill to pay talent wise since the team would be in the same boat right now without the ability to trade or use those players to rebuild the team. Keeping those players will not help the Yankees win now, but in 2 years they own some extremely talented arms that are cheap.

      Bottom line: Posters like you should state at the beginning of a post: I hate the Yankees & Cashmen then (fill in the rest). At least it would let all readers know that regardless of what the Yankees or Cashman do you would crush them/him for it.

  12. Edgar4evar 4 years ago

    So you’re saying it was stupid for Cashman to offer the deal the Mariners rejected due to a failed physical? Sounds like I’m not the only one who hates Cashman. And if you think you know what Lee would have done if he’d won a ring with the Yankees you should start a psychic hotline. The rational assumption is that it could have made some difference in his decision-making. In other words, I’m saying Cashman was right to make the offer Seattle rejected — so I guess I hate him? Prospects are there to help you win titles, even the Yankees need to take those opportunities when they arise. By the time Montero is really contributing the list of current Yankees that will be to old to do so will be very long.

    You don’t have to hate the Yankees to think Cashman’s full of crap on this one.

    • ChicaOnDeck 4 years ago

      I agree with reality2100. You (Edgar4evar) are missing the point entirely in favor of your hate.

      The middle sentence of your 1st post reads: “Of course now he’d rather have Montero than not have him. ”

      Your own middle sentence IS THE POINT of what Cashman is saying. You just wrote the same thing that Cashman was saying. He’s talking HINDSIGHT. That he’s glad he didn’t give up Montero because then he wouldn’t have him now. He’s NOT saying that he didn’t want Lee at the time. But that seeing as how Lee would have gone to Phillies, in the long term the loss of Lee in the trade was a blessing in disguise.

      Boggles the mind how some people have such low comprehension of what Cashman is saying & rush to slam him.

      Here’s an example of hindsight, for those still not understanding what Cashman is saying:

      Dude walks into bar. Sees a hot chick, who is rumored to give you the most mind blowing sex you ever had. You go up to her, but some other dude gets her first.

      A month later you find out the hot chick had aids and you’re thinking “phew, I’m glad I didn’t get her that night cause my future would be screwed etc”

      Edgar4evar’s response to relieved dude: “so you whined for days about not getting this hot chick and NOW you’re happy you didn’t bang her. What a load of crap. You wanted her. Of course now that she has aids you’re glad you didn’t bang her. But you were deep in trying to get her & have the best bang of your life. But you didn’t get her. This is trying to saving face, nothing more”

  13. RahZid 4 years ago

    Lee being on the Yankees instead of Rangers completely changes all the pitching matchups to favor the Yankees. I mean, a top 3 of CC, Lee and Hughes would have been amazing for the Yankees.

  14. Since_77 4 years ago

    No. Lee pitched a two hit shut out in game 3 of the ALCS against them. The Rangers would not have even gotten by the Rays in the ALDS without Lee. He won game one and seven of the ALCS.

  15. YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

    You say somesilly things some time. Nothing is guaranteed but Lee won 3 games for them and allowed 2 runs in 24 IP in the ALDC and ALCS. If he’s not with Texas then nothings happening for them. As for what Cashman said, maybe Lee would’ve liked NY, maybe he wouldn’t of. However, if his exp in Philly was that great then chances are the same outcome may have happened and we would be w/o Montero at the end of the day. IF we would’ve made it to and won the WS then you can say it was worth losing Montero but who is to say that would’ve been the outcome?

  16. MB923 4 years ago

    So the Red Sox still would have won the 2004 World Series if they didn’t trade Nomar? They still would have won the 2007 WS if they didn’t do the Beckett/Lowell trade?

  17. RahZid 4 years ago

    You’re absolutely right, I do wish the Sox got the upper hand, but alas we had a terrible season health wise.

  18. TheRattler 4 years ago

    He is speculating but you aren’t when you say the Rangers would have beaten the Yankees even if the Yankees added Lee and subtracted him from the Rangers? Furthermore, without Lee, the Rangers don’t make it out of the first round. The Rays series went five games. Take away Lee, who won two of the three Texas wins, and the Rangers are sitting home watching the Rays-Yankees ALCS.

  19. MB923 4 years ago

    Think you meant CC, Lee, Pettitte, Hughes

  20. RahZid 4 years ago

    You are absolutely correct, thanks for pointing that out.

  21. MB923 4 years ago

    And he means ALDS too I’m sure haha.

  22. bjsguess 4 years ago

    Trading for Lee would have:

    1. Brought 2 compensation picks (if he signed elsewhere)
    2. Increased the odds of playoff success for NY while also decreasing the odds of success for Texas
    3. Increased the probability that he would be playing for NY right now

    The Yanks failing to get Lee will prove to be a decision that has lasting impacts for years to come. Not unlike my team’s failure to land Crawford/Beltre and instead trade for Wells. Those types of decisions are the ones that keep on giving …

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