AL East Notes: Sabathia, Burnett, Orioles

Two AL East front offices will have different looks next year, as Theo Epstein is heading for Chicago and the Orioles are searching for a new GM. Here's the latest on the division…


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141 Comments on "AL East Notes: Sabathia, Burnett, Orioles"


3 years 9 months ago

trading lowe for burnett would be about the dumbest thing the braves could do for a number of reasons…
A. we dont need more pitching, hence why lowe needs to go
B. lowe needs to go because he is terrible, burnett is just as bad
C. lowe makes alot of money and is bad, but burnett makes more money, for a longer time and is probably worse than lowe

can anyone give me a rational explanation for why lowe for burnett is good for anyone but the yankees? or is this guys just stupid enough to think that the rest of baseball just bends to the whim of the yankees?

$3513744
3 years 9 months ago

He clearly meant that this is what he would do on Xbox. But if it were me, I’d trade Burnett for Felix Hernandez, Freddy Garcia for Justin Verlander, Bartolo Colon for Roy Halladay, A-rod for Longoria, Swisher for Jose Bautista, Cervelli for McCann, Jeter for Cliff Lee, and then sign Jose Reyes and Pujols to 1 mil a year deals. Maybe also throw some cash in there somewhere to get Clayton Kershaw, Brian Wilson, and Matt Kemp for some depth.

NYBravosFan10
3 years 9 months ago

We could do an Edwin Jackson-style flip. Doesn’t happen all that often but it does happen.

Rabbitov
3 years 9 months ago

“A. we dont need more pitching,”

I stopped reading your post at that point thinking you probably don’t understand baseball.

Chris Johnston
3 years 9 months ago

who was it that said, if you think you have enough pitching… get more pitching?

that was a paraphrase but everybody says that.

I dont know what that guy was thinking.

3 years 9 months ago

Hudson
Hanson
Jurrjens
Lowe
Beachy
Minor
Teheran
Delgado
Vizcaino
Medlen
C Martinez can spot start

How many starting pitchers does a team need?? I haven’t stopped laughing at this point because you clearly don’t understand the Braves rotation depth.

The last thing the Braves need to do is prolong the misery that came from the 08-09 offseason by adding a pitcher that’s no better than Lowe, that also has an extra year on his contract and makes more money to boot.

-C

Rabbitov
3 years 9 months ago

They say in law when someone uses the term “clearly” they don’t have a good argument. You are no exception.  

Guest
3 years 9 months ago

100% agreed. 

NYBravosFan10
3 years 9 months ago

seeing as how you used the word “duh” and “freaking” in your post below this one I wouldn’t think you’d be anyone to bust on someone for appropriate word usage.

Rabbitov
3 years 9 months ago

My bad for using slang, I’ll try to do better next time. 

NYBravosFan10
3 years 9 months ago

it’s not bad that you used slang it’s just that you sound a little hypocritical. By all means say whatever you want but don’t preach what you don’t practice

Rabbitov
3 years 9 months ago

Difference between slang and using a word that signifies a bad argument. Two completely different things. Can you see the distinction?

sunking1056
3 years 9 months ago

Jesus what a dick

Rabbitov
3 years 9 months ago

Thanks bud. You have contributed a lot here.

3 years 9 months ago

Jesus:  “Why are you telling me about dicks?”

3 years 9 months ago

Okay, if I don’t have a good argument, please name five teams with better rotational depth than the Braves.

-C

NYBravosFan10
3 years 9 months ago

I’d feel safe challenging someone to name only 2

Rabbitov
3 years 9 months ago

Braves have the best rotational depth in baseball, that means exactly squat here is why:

1) Whatever can go wrong will go wrong.  Its proven to happen time and time again.  Injury, pitcher’s who suddenly get ineffective, pitchers who tired down because of the long season, pitchers who get ineffective during playoffs. There will always be a need for starters.

2) By adding more starting pitching it allows the Braves total ability to trade away from a strength, aka starting pitching, without feeling short-handed in that area.  

3) Not every young starter becomes a young starter.  Even the sure things can bust.

4) A lot of young starters end up as relievers. You can never have enough relievers. 

5) More pitchers promotes more competition so the cream always rises to the top. 

6) More veteran pitching allows younger pitching to have a mentor and allows teams the ability to slowly ease younger pitchers into the rotation. 

7) While the wave of starters is great now, it may thin out in the future, you never know.  Therefore by having a lot of starting pitching you can trade for younger starters for the future.

8) Starters are incredibly expensive on the open market so when a crop of them hits free agency at around the same time the chance of the Braves resigning them is very difficult. 

There is 8 off of the top of my head.  Braves have probably the best rotational depth in the league.  That does not mean the Braves don’t need more pitching. Every team does, and its not a “myth” or “empty saying.”

EDIT: Let me also point out some of you think I am arguing they should add AJ Burnett. If you think that you can’t read very well. I am arguing the point that someone said the Braves don’t need pitching.

NYBravosFan10
3 years 9 months ago

all really great points but it does get a bit extreme with the Braves. All of those guys are major league ready and with the exception of Lowe and Vizcaino, all have a future in our rotation at some point. How would we work in AJ Burnett or anyone outside the team for that matter?

3 years 9 months ago

Vizcaino is going back to the rotation. He was in the bullpen late in the season only to limit his innings.

-C

NYBravosFan10
3 years 9 months ago

I’ve read a few articles that have said his future is in the bullpen.

3 years 9 months ago

It might be. But he’s still going back to the rotation.

-C

rundmc1981
3 years 9 months ago

Frank Wren, where are you getting your info from? Unless you’re Vizcaino’s off-season pitching coach and can teach him how to add a 3rd pitch, then the scouts are right…he’ll be a better fit in the bullpen. Doesn’t mean he has to stay there though (a la Neftali Feliz). Only Vizcaino can affect what they do with him because he certainly has the speed to be an above-average starter (but not the off-speed stuff).  

3 years 9 months ago

It is not an empty myth, but the Braves are an exception to the rule because no team has unlimited roster spots.

The Braves have more than 10 pitchers that are rotation-worthy on their 40-man roster alone. That’s a ton of starting pitching, but they still have another stockpile in the minor league system (Spruill, Hoover, Perez, Gilmartin, et al.). This is where it gets tricky, because of Rule V drafts. You can’t protect everyone by putting them on the 40-man because it’s already full of starting pitching, and you get jack in return for your investment if any of your players are taken. You also have to have room for positional backups not on the active roster, and bullpen replacements as well.

Beyond that, you also have options on these players on the 40-man roster that are being used each year when they aren’t put on the active roster. Once the options run out, you have to designate the player for assignment, opening him to being taken by another team off waivers. Again, the Braves generally will get a paltry return, if any, from this.

The Braves will likely trade away some pitching to make room for some of these folks. In that sense, they don’t need pitching if they’re trading it away. They have plenty, and it’s already logjamming. Whether the pitcher is A.J. Burnett or some lesser caliber pitcher is a moot point. They don’t have spots on the 40-man for these people.

“Too much pitching” can exist. It’s a rarity, to be sure, but it can and has happened.

-C

Rabbitov
3 years 9 months ago

You’re a smart guy and but I don’t agree with the idea that ‘too much pitching’ can exist. If you have what you consider to be ‘too much pitching’ you trade that pitching, but when you trade it you need some to replace what was traded.

It is a never-ending cycle. 

Using basic economic terms, pitching is a commodity in baseball. As a commodity you want as much of it as humanly possible. If you use that commodity to get other things then you are taking advantage of having a lot of that commodity, but you’d still want more of it, especially when pitching is a commodity that is fragile and expires.

3 years 9 months ago

You don’t replace it with a trade or free agency, unless you’re looking to upgrade somewhere (in the Braves’ case, promotion). You replace it with the draft and investing in your young guys, which the Braves are doing. CLEARLY.

I’ve already said all this. The Braves will trade guys off the 40-man, they will replace those guys in order to prevent others from being taken in Rule V drafts, and they’ll continue to draft pitching, as they always have. You basically reiterated my argument there, in an attempt to counterpoint.

-C

Rabbitov
3 years 9 months ago

We’ll have to agree to disagree on the basic point.  

We definitely both agree that Burnett isn’t the answer here (because of his price tag).   Also as good as the Braves have done drafting and developing pitchers the draft is just not a sure thing.  My view is there is never enough pitching in an organization and I am not coming down from it. 

3 years 9 months ago

You don’t replace it with a trade or free agency, unless you’re looking to upgrade somewhere (in the Braves’ case, promotion). You replace it with the draft and investing in your young guys, which the Braves are doing. CLEARLY.

I’ve already said all this. The Braves will trade guys off the 40-man, they will replace those guys in order to prevent others from being taken in Rule V drafts, and they’ll continue to draft pitching, as they always have. You basically reiterated my argument there, in an attempt to counterpoint.

-C

rundmc1981
3 years 9 months ago

That rotational depth would have come in nicely while throwing Lowe out there the 2nd to last game of the season vs. PHI, when Jurrjens went down (again), and Hanson went down (again). Aside from Hudson, we had rookies out there. I love Beachy, but I’m not ready to boast about “rotational depth” and going into the playoffs with guys that have all the potential in the world, but none of the MLB experience. Not all of them need to shine, but thinking all of them will go from budding prospects to Tom Glavine their first season (or even Steve Avery) is silly.

3 years 9 months ago

I never said I expected them to go from prospects to Tom Glavine in their first season (and none profiles as a Glavine clone, any way). However, every one of the guys mentioned have started MLB games, Vizcaino being the only exception, and none disappointed. They aren’t stars yet, by any means, but the future is bright.

And, FWIW, that rotational depth did come in handy when Jurrjens and Hanson went down. The pitching wasn’t the problem in September. The fill-ins did an excellent job, by and large. The offense was the issue that cost the team a playoff berth.

If you were disheartened by any of the prospects’ performances late in the season, I’d like to know which ones. Delgado’s peripherals weren’t great, but he worked through it. Teheran couldn’t strike anyone out, but that will come with experience. There really weren’t any disappointments at all. If you thought they’d come out pitching at their ceilings, well, you have irrational expectations. They are still young, but guess what?? They’re still depth.

-C

3 years 9 months ago

I never said I expected them to go from prospects to Tom Glavine in their first season (and none profiles as a Glavine clone, any way). However, every one of the guys mentioned have started MLB games, Vizcaino being the only exception, and none disappointed. They aren’t stars yet, by any means, but the future is bright.

And, FWIW, that rotational depth did come in handy when Jurrjens and Hanson went down. The pitching wasn’t the problem in September. The fill-ins did an excellent job, by and large. The offense was the issue that cost the team a playoff berth.

If you were disheartened by any of the prospects’ performances late in the season, I’d like to know which ones. Delgado’s peripherals weren’t great, but he worked through it. Teheran couldn’t strike anyone out, but that will come with experience. There really weren’t any disappointments at all. If you thought they’d come out pitching at their ceilings, well, you have irrational expectations. They are still young, but guess what?? They’re still depth.

-C

YanksFanSince78
3 years 9 months ago

The Braves have pitching but let’s be honest. The mlb pitchers consist of…

Hudson- Very good but is 36 going on 37.
Hanson- Missed signifigant time last year and you don’t know if it will be an issue.
Jurgens- Missed signifigant time in the last two years (only an avg of about 140 IP).
Lowe- Bad.

Young guys and prospects.

Beachy- Looks good.
Minor- Probably the real deal but has only thrown 123 mlb innings.
Teheran- Will be 21. Is he mlb ready?
Delgado- Will be 22. Is he mlb ready?
Vizcaino- 21 and same questions as Teheran and Delgado plus he’s never thrown over 100 IP in 4 seasons and has had arm troubles. Can he stay as a starter?
Medlen- Fresh off of TJ surgery. Only threw 2 IP the entire season. No idea what you can expect from him.
C Martinez can spot start- Nothing more than a spot starter.

Add to the fact that the Braves might need to package a couple of the above for some offense and the mix of health concerns and inexperienced yet talented pitchers they are relying on and it might be in their best interest to pick up another #3-#4 guy especially if they can move Lowe.

Now after saying all that, AJ doesn’t fit the bill for what they need but if they could dump Lowe and grab someone in a trade or maybe splurge on E.Jackson than it would make sense.

3 years 9 months ago

I’m looking down your list, looking for bad indicators…all I see is Lowe- Bad. That’s it.

MLB ready?? Not a bad indicator. They’re young. It’s natural to question whether they’re ready. Once again, find me some other teams with comparable depth, and I might begin to worry.

The idea that the Braves need to package a couple for some offense isn’t true. The Braves need their offense to perform at its capable level. A single bat at SS or LF wouldn’t hurt, but that player doesn’t need to be a world-beater. Capable options exist outside of trading away your top talent to get that guy. I know that’s the Yankee way, and we thank you for Vizcaino, but the Braves don’t need to go that route to succeed.

The problem with splurging on someone like E Jackson is that you can’t do a one-year deal. The inexperience is a temporary problem, E Jackson is going to be a long-term obligation. The two don’t really mesh.

Even with Lowe gone, you’re looking at a promotion of Minor, who’s shown himself fairly capable, or one of the top-three pitching prospects in the minor leagues. Horror! There are still four or more other guys ready to step up if either should fail. Pretty sure there’s 28 or more teams that would love to have that problem.

-C

YanksFanSince78
3 years 9 months ago

“MLB ready?? Not a bad indicator. They’re young. It’s natural to question whether they’re ready. Once again, find me some other teams with comparable depth, and I might begin to worry”.
MLB ready isn’t an issue? Really? Remember 2008 when the Yanks thought it was wise to rely on Joba, Hughes and IPK? None of them were mlb ready. 
The idea isn’t to be as bad as anyone else it’s to be better. And what the real issue is, is that you have a 37 year old as your ace, an injury prone pitcher in Jurgens and Hanson who may or may not be able to go 200 IP next year. Other than that you have a bunch of question marks.

Last year the Yanks had tons of depth. Ppl may have QUESTIONED the starting five, and rightfully so, but they started off with CC, AJ, Hughes, Colon, Nova and Garcia at the mlb level and Adam Warren (152 IP 3.60 ERA/4.05 FIP), David Phelps (injured; 107 IP 3.19 ERA/3.69 FIP), Hector Noesi (used mostly as a reliever in the majors), DJ Mitchell (160 IP 3.18 ERA/3.96 FIP) and Brackman (complete mess in 2011) at AAA and Banuelos, Stoneburner and Betances at AA. And add to that Milwood and Carlos Silva. My point is, if the Braves can add a solid #3 w/o and still improve the offense it certainly wouldn’t hurt.

3 years 9 months ago

I’d say Beachy’s performance last season puts him in the #3 spot on most MLB teams. He should push 180 IP or more next season.

The difference between Joba and the Braves prospects is that Chamberlain hadn’t pitched more than 118 innings (2005, Nebraska) in any given season before taking the starting job at the age of 22 after a single season of professional ball. Hughes hadn’t broken 150 innings in two minor league seasons, the second being almost 50 IP less due to injury. Comparatively, Teheran – 165 IP last year; Minor, 180 IP; Delgado, 175 IP. Minor’s the only one of that bunch that doesn’t have 3 years of minor league ball under his belt.

At some point, you have to let the pitchers pitch. It’s all well and good to say, “Oh, I don’t know if they’re MLB-ready or not,” but they’ve got to prove themselves at some point. I imagine Delgado will get some serious AAA time, and Teheran may start the year there, but the Braves will be promoting pitchers again very soon. They’ve logged the innings, they’ve put in the years. They aren’t low-level prospects with high ceilings and unknown floors. These are established prospects with high ceilings and very estimable floors.

Sure, the safe way is to pick up another veteran, but that’s a safe move half the teams in the league would make – and subsequently botch. The Braves don’t have the payroll, luxury, or mentality – they’re going to let their young guys play. If you need any proof of that, look at the three players on the roster that have picked up ROY votes in 2009-10 and the three that should pick up votes in 2011. This is a young team that’s going to be great for a long time, with or without the safety of an overpaid veteran #3 starter.

-C

kast2L
3 years 9 months ago

Spot on with mostly everything but the starts from Delgado that i was able to watch he looked promising and had a no hitter going against the SF Giants (i know thats not saying much but still). I’m glad someone else finally sees Minor being GOOD, not great but good, bc most braves fans wanted to trade him. 

slider32
3 years 9 months ago

Your right, the Braves don’t need pitching they need another bat in the lineup!

inkstainedscribe
3 years 9 months ago

A better response might be, the Braves have a lot of pitching depth, a shaky offense, and a questionable defense. Upgrades are needed, and if you’re going to acquire new pieces via trades, you can offer pitching. Not as punchy, but accurate.

azdsnd
3 years 9 months ago

As much as this is usually true, it’s kind of applicable here.  I think the phase should have said “we don’t need more expensive pitching,” but the point stands.  The names have already been listed, so I don’t need to repeat them, but anybody thinking that the Braves would have ANY interest in Burnett is out of their mind.

Rabbitov
3 years 9 months ago

If the phrase was that I would have agreed. 

roberty
3 years 9 months ago

The Braves don’t need more pitching. 

Rabbitov
3 years 9 months ago

Thats like saying Mars doesn’t need any more Moms. 

East Coast Bias
3 years 9 months ago

You just cracked my top 10 posters list.

Don’t know if that’s a good thing or bad…

Rabbitov
3 years 9 months ago

Haha it works because the feeling is mutual. 

clvclv
3 years 9 months ago

Absolutely hilarious. Wren’s trying to unload Lowe for a bag of balls as it is. How some of these guys keep their jobs when proposing such things in print is absolutely beyond me. 

I know nothing about Xbox, but that wouldn’t even be an option there.

roberty
3 years 9 months ago

In the article he does say that he would expect a lot of money to be going to the Braves with Burnett to offset the $18 million difference in guaranteed money. That said, the Braves would be better off dealing Lowe for someone like Chone Figgins, who is guaranteed a similar amount of money and could be useful as a utility player.

rundmc1981
3 years 9 months ago

I’ll go ahead and state that Lowe for Burnett would be dumb, unless NYY kicks in a few million making Burnett’s contract cheaper than Lowe’s. For the fact that Burnett’s contract is through 2013, ATL shouldn’t do it, unless they can find someone that’d take him off our hands for less than Lowe…which is probably impossible. Burnett is 2 years younger though and still is striking out people almost at a batter per IP. In my mind, Burnett fits more of the bill for KC’s look for a top-level starter than Lowe does. Maybe Burnett out of the NY spotlight would do the same good that it has for Melky and Francoeur.

YanksFanSince78
3 years 9 months ago

The AJ for Lowe thing doesn’t make sense for anyone unless it’s part of a bigger deal where the Braves get a bat and the Yanks get something else of need like a mlb ready arm or something.

captainjeter
3 years 9 months ago

keep your trash

Rabbitov
3 years 9 months ago

Well duh there are a ton of people that’d want to be Orioles GM.  The job pays a lot of money, plus you get to be a freaking General Manager.  Thats not the issue, the issue is can the Orioles lure a GM who can turn this franchise around.   

My feeling is yes, but Angelos will probably scare him away before he does. 

MaineSox
3 years 9 months ago

I’d like to be the Orioles’ GM

Phillies_Aces35
3 years 9 months ago

Those teams that get by aren’t the New York Yankees. They should consider going in a different direction.

Michael Brown
3 years 9 months ago

Lowe for Burnett makes no sense for Atlanta. I don’t know if you have heard but we have 4 pitchers that could be making an impact for about 29 teams starting rotations that have been blocked by Lowe. The last thing we need is another overpaid/underperforming pitcher to block the big 4.

Sounds like a Yankees pipe dream, to trade two years of a failing pitching for one year of a failing (and aging) pitcher. 

Guest
3 years 9 months ago

The 2011 Post Season says hello and approves of your pitching depth, genius. 

$3513744
3 years 9 months ago

The Phillies must have a terrible pitching staff too.

Guest
3 years 9 months ago

Seriously? That’s your comment? Have you even been following baseball over the last few weeks? Sad part; someone will like your comment, just because. Phillies, like the Yankee’s didn’t come through with a clutch hit in the PS. The Braves however, with their taunted pitching staff stumbled into the finish line from injuries and lack of depth. 

$3513744
3 years 9 months ago

Only if you were serious.  I actually just started watching two minutes ago, so you are right that you are the foremost expert in all the world.  But since the Braves lost, their pitching staff clearly sucks–which must mean the Phillies pitching sucks too because they also lost.  I watch other sports too, and from all of them I know that no one ever gets injured, and that if you go into the end of the season and post season with injured players, clearly it means those players suck.

Guest
3 years 9 months ago

ah yes, it all makes sense now. 

3 years 9 months ago

Wrong.

The Braves pitching staff, as a whole, gave up 4 runs or less 17 times in September.

The Braves offense scored four runs or less 19 times in September.

The offense was the problem, not the pitching.

-C

roberty
3 years 9 months ago

The Braves have depth, but their best pitchers are very young and inexperienced.  The quality of the Braves depth of pitching will improve significantly in 2012 and 2013.  Yes, the Braves missed the playoffs this year, partly because of injuries to Hanson and Jurrjens — mostly as a result of an impatient, sloppy offense and horrible management and coaching. Injuries to the rotation next year will not hurt as much because the guys filling those holes will be more experienced and will be able to pitch deeper into games.  Depth for the sake of depth will not make the Braves better going forward, especially 2 years of a salary sponge like AJ Burnett. 

NYBravosFan10
3 years 9 months ago

it wasn’t just pitching GENIUS, our offense crashed and burned worse than a 7 year old that just took his training wheels off

Guest
3 years 9 months ago

Right, so you’re confirming my point and adding your own; stating the offense was horrendous as well. Thanks. 

NYBravosFan10
3 years 9 months ago

“The 2011 Post Season says hello and approves of your pitching depth, genius.”

Funny, I don’t see the offense in there anywhere…     

John DiRienzo
3 years 9 months ago

hey genius

don’t use a semicolon if you don’t know how to incorporate it correctly. and before you call me a grammar nazi, please remember that it’s syntax.

also, normally don’t care about proper punctuation, grammar or syntax. just like to be a jerk to other jerks.

3 years 9 months ago

Pretty sure it was offense rather than defense that caused that, genius.

Maybe if the Yankees didn’t have to rely on pitchers like Nova in the postseason, they might still be playing.

-C

MurderersRow27
3 years 9 months ago

“Maybe if the Yankees didn’t have to rely on pitchers like Nova in the postseason, they might still be playing.”

I’m going to assume you have no idea what you’re talking about here. That is one of the most asinine comments I’ve read on this site in some time… The Yankees aren’t in the ALCS because of Nova, but because of the offense. Nova pitched 6+ shutout innings in game 1 for the W in the ALDS, and although he gave up back to back solo homers in the 1st inning of game 5, he was settling down with a quick 2nd inning, before leaving with forearm tightness. I’m pretty sure you can go ahead and blame Arod, Tex, Swisher, and Martin for the Yankees not continuing their bid for a World Series title. Pitching was not the issue, and if you look at the stats for the Yankees pitching staff (as a whole) in the Division Series (both AL and NL), they arguably performed the best out of the 8 teams…

3 years 9 months ago

You’re right, looking at the postseason itself, the Yankees pitching was just fine. Small sample size applies, though. How about the regular season??

Just because the Yankees rotation was “good enough” to get them to the playoffs doesn’t mean they’re good. In the end, which is better – the Yankees rotation, or the Braves?? Braves all day.

And, when the chips are down, in any given game, Ivan Nova is the guy you want to trust?? C’mon. Even Derek Lowe has better peripherals.

-C

MurderersRow27
3 years 9 months ago

Derek Lowe’s peripherals are better than Ivan Nova’s… You’re kidding right? Do you look at stats or anything before you type? Not trying to be a jerk here, but cmon man. Nova gave up less homers than Lowe, and Nova BAA was .258 with a WHIP of 1.33 (Lowe’s BAA was.285 with a WHIP of 1.51). Better peripherals? Atlanta’s pitching staff was ranked 4th in the NL (and 4th in all of MLB), while the Yankees’ staff was ranked 4th in the AL (11th in all of MLB). Overall the numbers for Atlanta’s staff are better than New York’s, yes I’ll give you that, but they’re not all that much better (especially considering they are from different leagues and the majority of NL offenses aren’t comparable to AL offenses).. Also put into account that the Yankees rolled out Freddy Garcia, Bartolo Colon, AJ Burnett, and Phil Hughes for the majority of their starts this season, I’d say that’s pretty damn good… I never said that Ivan Nova was the guy I’d want on the mound if all the chips were down, but then again, it’s hard to not trust the guy when he was consistent as all hell, won 12+ games in a row (hadn’t lost since June 3rd) and was superb down the stretch.

3 years 9 months ago

Pitchers don’t have much, if any, control over hits or HR/FB. That said, Nova had less home runs in less innings, but not fewer home runs per inning. Lowe 0.67/9IP to Nova’s 0.71/9IP. But this is a small point, because pitchers can’t control it to any certain degree.

K and K/BB rate are both in Lowe’s favor. Nova barely wins BB rate, but that’s less important than K/BB. This gives Lowe a better FIP and xFIP (3.70/3.65 to 4.08/4.20).

The difference that made Lowe’s results (not peripherals) worse than Nova’s are essentially BABIP-related, which isn’t controllable. A lot of it is probably because of the three stones (Jones, Uggla, Freeman) in the infield playing behind Lowe, as well as having McLouth in center and a newly-minted LF in Prado. Identical LD%, Nova has a better FB%, which is advantageous for BABIP suppression, but it doesn’t account for a 44-point swing between the two. Nova certainly had the advantage of a better defense playing behind him.

When discussing pitching peripherals, it’s advantageous to use team-independent findings rather than data that is skewed by a large amount of circumstantial evidence.

-C

MurderersRow27
3 years 9 months ago

Derek Lowe’s peripherals are better than Ivan Nova’s… You’re kidding right? Do you look at stats or anything before you type? Not trying to be a jerk here, but cmon man. Nova gave up less homers than Lowe, and Nova BAA was .258 with a WHIP of 1.33 (Lowe’s BAA was.285 with a WHIP of 1.51). Better peripherals? Atlanta’s pitching staff was ranked 4th in the NL (and 4th in all of MLB), while the Yankees’ staff was ranked 4th in the AL (11th in all of MLB). Overall the numbers for Atlanta’s staff are better than New York’s, yes I’ll give you that, but they’re not all that much better (especially considering they are from different leagues and the majority of NL offenses aren’t comparable to AL offenses).. Also put into account that the Yankees rolled out Freddy Garcia, Bartolo Colon, AJ Burnett, and Phil Hughes for the majority of their starts this season, I’d say that’s pretty damn good… I never said that Ivan Nova was the guy I’d want on the mound if all the chips were down, but then again, it’s hard to not trust the guy when he was consistent as all hell, won 12+ games in a row (hadn’t lost since June 3rd) and was superb down the stretch.

3 years 9 months ago

You’re right, looking at the postseason itself, the Yankees pitching was just fine. Small sample size applies, though. How about the regular season??

Just because the Yankees rotation was “good enough” to get them to the playoffs doesn’t mean they’re good. In the end, which is better – the Yankees rotation, or the Braves?? Braves all day.

And, when the chips are down, in any given game, Ivan Nova is the guy you want to trust?? C’mon. Even Derek Lowe has better peripherals.

-C

YanksFanSince78
3 years 9 months ago

Wow….you do realize that the Yanks allowed a total of 17 runs over the 5 game series right? 

The Rays allowed 16 in 4 games
The Rangers allowed 21 in 4 games
The Cards 21 in 5 games
The Phillies 19 in 5 games
The Dbacks 23 in 5 games
The Brewers 25 in 5 games
The Tigers 30 in 5 games

The Yanks lost because they scored most of their runs in 2 games (19 runs out of 30 runs scored).

As for Nova, if the Yanks had more “pitchers like Nova” and some hitting then we would probably still be playing. Nova allowed 4 runs in 8 IP and most of those came in a premature hook in his 2nd start.

3 years 9 months ago

Way to use incredibly small sample sizes to gauge the quality of a team. That’s the best way to determine how good or bad a team is, I’m sure.

-C

YanksFanSince78
3 years 9 months ago

I would say that pitching depth could come in handy for the Braves if the pitcher coming back to them wasn’t AJ. He could be better in the NL but is he really worth the gamble? Secondly, the Yanks would have to send so much money back in return to offset the difference that it wouldn’t make sense for the Yanks seeing as how there is no reason to expect Lowe to be an improvement over AJ. In other words the deal wouldn’t make sense for either side.

The ONLY way it would make sense for the Yanks was if they felt the need to move Swisher as part of a bigger deal and sign someone else to replace him in RF, which I think is stupid. However, the pitcher coming back would have to be better than Lowe or it simply wouldn’t make any sense at all for the Yanks to make that move.

3 years 9 months ago

Lowe would be better than Burnett, in that he’s a groundball pitcher and Yankee Stadium plays pretty small. Grounders don’t go over fences very often.

Other than that, I pretty much agree with everything you said.

-C

YanksFanSince78
3 years 9 months ago

His stats with the Red Sox and his age don’t make me feel as comfortable with the idea than you are. He might be better but I’m not expecting it to be a major upgrade.His HR/FB rate is historically higher than Aj’s (12% to 11.3).

3 years 9 months ago

HR/FB hasn’t been proven to be a repeatable skill and the difference in GB/FB ratios easily accounts for the difference and then some anyway.

-C

Michael Brown
3 years 9 months ago

I’m pretty sure the game would say no too.

Yanksfan2010
3 years 9 months ago

I would be willing to trade Burnett for a grounds keeper. They would probably do a better job then he did.

NYBravosFan10
3 years 9 months ago

I think Burnett did pretty good when the job truly called for it last week so the guy isn’t completely worthless.

MB923
3 years 9 months ago

Agree, that game and the 2009 WS Game 2 (while not an elimination game, but it was a must win game) saved the Yankees season. 1 won a WS, 1 extended it 1 more game lol.

I don’t think Lowe for Burnett is good for Either team. Yankees want to improve their rotation, Lowe is not an improvement over Burnett (Nor is Burnett over Lowe a good thing either). They are both Equal pitchers, and equal meaning equally bad.

NYBravosFan10
3 years 9 months ago

it’s kinda funny that they were signed around the same time and the Braves went with Lowe after getting outbid for Burnett

MB923
3 years 9 months ago

I think the offer for Burnett was almost the same, maybe a tad more to the Yankees.

Nontheless, both those pitchers suck mightily today. I’m not using 1 game (Game 4 of ALDS) to say he doesn’t. And in 2009, Burnett pitched okay. But both a waste of $.

3 years 9 months ago

Here’s what I’d do if I were running the Yankees:

-Don’t re-sign Cashman.  I’m running the Yankees; there’s absolutely no need for Cashman anymore.
-Decline the option on Cano, but re-sign him for 6 years at $1.5MM/yr. Include a team option 7th year for $2MM
– Decline the option on Swisher, but re-sign him for 3 years at $1MM/yr.  Include a team option ($1.2MM) that is automatically exercised if he wins an MVP award, Silver Slugger award, or a Rolaids Relief man of the year award.
-Tell CC that he’s not allowed to opt out, and hope that works out for us.
– Trade AJ Burnett for Clayton Kershaw.  Burnett has playoff experience, Kershaw doesn’t.  Kershaw is also some punk kid, while Burnett is a seasoned veteran who knows how to win.
– Sign David Dejesus.  I actually like that one, and won’t make fun of it…  Oh wait: If we’re resigning Swish for cheap, and still have Grandy and Gardy, there’s no room for Dejesus unless we’d like him to DH.  Oh right, we’re paying an aging, broken down A-Rod $27MM and he can’t seem to play defense for any more than 40 games a season anymore.  Dejesus can play 3B, right?

In closing, nothing Ken wrote in that article is at all intelligible.  I am now dumber for having read that, may god have mercy on my soul.

3 years 9 months ago

LMAO even though you stole the coup de gras from Billy Madison (and SNL writers) it was still very effective, but everybody’s bitterness on this talk back is kinda surprising. It’s what HE’D do in an ideal world. Dozens of these off-season plans are posited every off-season, everybody calm down and just enjoy the hypotheticals for what they are- hypotheticals, not realities.

3 years 9 months ago

I don’t disagree, but I think you’re (at least partially) missing the point.  The point isn’t that he’s not allowed to have his own opinion about what should be done with the Yankees this offseason; This guy writes for a reputable source, and is linked on an equally reputable source with regards to baseball knowledge, but what he writes is as much drivel as is half of any other comment you’ll see on here.  

The only difference between how ridiculous his article is and my comment above is the satirical tone that I took.  The fact that he thinks there is any way the Braves would touch Burnett with a 10 foot pole removes all credibility not only from that article, but from him as a source of baseball knowledge.

My above comment is just as much what I would do in an ideal world as is his article.  The fact that the actual world is so far from the ideal world required for half the stuff in his article to occur makes the article completely useless.

NYBravosFan10
3 years 9 months ago

I personally think that both Cano and Swisher are going to get extensions rather than get their options picked up.

MB923
3 years 9 months ago

I don’t see Swisher getting an extension if the Yankees do not trade Montero. He MIGHT (Although I doubt) be a RFer in the future. Their DH is locked up with the later years of A-Rod and 1B is locked up with Teixiera. I do think they will pick up Swisher’s option. Yes he has bad postseason numbers but you can’t get there without being successful in the regular season. Most people don’t know it, but as I and YFS78 have said, he led the Yankees in OBP.

Fun Times
3 years 9 months ago

I would trade Lowe to Yankees but in exchange they give us 2 tickets to Book of Mormon. Then flip Jurrjens to either Boston or Yankees for someone who can hit. Sell Jurrjens while his value is high.

theyankeefanatic
3 years 9 months ago

you guys are hilariuos…we can a thousand post up about what we would or wouldn’t do but something tells me none of our favorite teams does anything close to what we want…and thats the most funny part of our post…

NYBravosFan10
3 years 9 months ago

that’s sorta where the fun comes in on this website. None of us are GM’s but it’s a blast arguing and discussing like we have something to do with the team.

AmericanMovieFan
3 years 9 months ago

This is a lose-lose situation. We need to get younger. Period. Signing Burnett was a disastrous panic move from day 1. Cano needs to be extended. I love Swisher so I’m too biased to be completely objective about his situation, but if I had my druthers he’d remain a Yankee and we’d continue to hope he has a break out post-season finally.

A-Rod is just… Oy. There’s no solution there, besides hoping the man expresses some humility and bows out of this atrocious contract, which will never happen.

YanksFanSince78
3 years 9 months ago

I disagree with calling AJ a panic move. The biggest question mark wasn’t his ability to pitch in the Al East it was his health. He has been extremely durable in his 3 years in NY. When he was signed he was a solid #2 who was 10th in the AL in FIP, 3rd in K/9 and 10th in WAR among all Al pitchers. Again, the biggest concern and the biggest criticism of the deal wasn’t whether he was a good pitcher, it was whether or not he would stay healthy enough to warrant his contract. If he had pitched as well as he did over the 3 years previous in Toronto then he and CC would’ve made one of the best 1-2 combos in the AL.

As for Arod, he just needs to stay healthy. He will never earn his salary on the field but if healthy I can see a .285/.360/.500, 30 hr and 100 rbi campaign with solid defense @ 3rd.

0bsessions
3 years 9 months ago

Posnaki’s article in the NL East Notes from today makes a good point in regards to A-Rod in, yes, that’s what you can expect in the next couple of years should he manage to stay on the field (Although I’d say solid defense is a stretch, he’s been a below average defender at third since 2005 and he’s only going to get worse as he ages, especially with all of those injuries he’s had piling up lately).

But, as has been pointed out, he’s clearly entering the decline phase of his career. He’s probably not going to plateau any time soon, conventional wisdom indicates he’ll likely continue to regress until he inevitably retires (Though I’d peg that coming no sooner than after his current deal expires, e’s always given the impression of being so wrapped up in his reputation that he’ll hang on as long as possible). In this day and age, he’s not going to be able to fall back on PED’s as people did ten years ago to keep going past his mid-thirties. Sure, he may be able to continue posting an OPS in the 800s for the next year or two, but what about the four years remaining on his contract after that where he will, in all likelihood, be struggling to top 20-25 home runs a year? Those numbers are realistic for maybe the next couple of years, but I think it’s expecting a bit much for him to maintain production like that three seasons from now when he’s 39.

YanksFanSince78
3 years 9 months ago

He had an 11 UZR last year. Don’t expect him to be THAT good but I don’t expect him to be far off if he’s healthy.

As for what he will do at age 39? Who knows. However, Hank Aaron did hit 40 at age 39. But I get your point and already stated there’s no way he will ever match his pay on the field.

0bsessions
3 years 9 months ago

It’s well documented that UZR can be insubstantial in one year sample sizes. Yes, he had an 11 for UZR this season, but look at the rest of his career at third:

2004: 8.2 (This is where it stops being pleasant)
2005: -0.1
2006: -14.1
2007: -1.5
2008: -2.3
2009: -6.0
2010: -1.8

Even accounting for good years this year and in 2004, Rodriguez has a -6.6 UZR on his career at third and a -1.0 UZR/150. +/- has him listed as one of the worst defensive third baseman in the MLB pretty much straight through from 2006-2010. Pretty much every metric one can conceive of has Rodriguez ranging anywhere from below average to terribad at third. He’s already overpaid, but if he can’t maintain an OPS over .800, he’s going to be an outright liability in a couple years and still have a full four years left before he’s off the books.

MurderersRow27
3 years 9 months ago

How can you say signing Burnett was a disastrous panic move from day 1? They signed him to compliment CC at the top of the rotation, and although the last 2 years have been terrible for AJ, he did pitch fairly well in 2009, shut down the Phillies in the WS that year in his start, and help bring the 27th World Series title to the Bronx… When he was with Toronto he was good, and he shut the Yankees down… Definitely not a panic move, especially when they signed CC as well…

YanksFanSince78
3 years 9 months ago

I simply don’t understand the displeasure with Swisher and why ppl are so quick to run him out of town. Yes, he struggles in the post-season but we aren’t an offense built around 1 guy and he surely hasn’t been the biggest reason we’ve failed to go far in the playoffs. 

I also don’t understand the love affair for DeJesus and why he suggests we should sign Swisher (which I would do) AND sign DeJesus. That would give us 4 outfielders. Maybe he suggests we should then trade Swisher in a deal for pitching. However, DeJesus is NOT as good of a hitter as Swisher is (less power and less power), is another lefty which we have plenty of (Cano, Gardner, Grandy) and doesn’t hit lefties (career OPS of .690 which includes an OPS of .459 in 2011).

Why are ppl in love with this guy? Because he’s from Brooklyn? The only thing he may have over Swisher is that he’s performed better in the field but the margin between him and Swisher has become a lot smaller as Swisher has improved each year and posted a 6.7 UZR compared to DJ’s 7.5.

He’s not worth it to me. Leave Swisher alone and focus elsewhere.

AmericanMovieFan
3 years 9 months ago

I do feel like $10MM a year is the absolute ceiling for Swisher and that’s at a loyalty/veteran rate, but I still think he’s under valued, mostly because of his glaring streakiness. People seem to ignore his year end numbers, which are very consistent. 25 HR power with 85 RBI’s, year in and year out, with an above average walk-rate and average to above average defense, as well as giving us flexibility at first base and a switch-hitter, which is always nice. So maybe $10.125MM is a tad overpay for Swisher’s services. 

I’d like to see them void his current deal and re-sign him to 2 years/$17MM with an $8MM option and a $3MM buy out.

YanksFanSince78
3 years 9 months ago

His “streakiness” lasted from June 1st to September 1st. That’s more than half of the season.

Over the last 3 years he ranks 7th in WAR (an avg of just under 4) among all non-CF Al Of’ers. Ahead of BJ Upton, Suzuki, Hunter, Span, Markakis, Adam Jones, Cuddyer, Abreu, DeJesus and Kubel.

He’s also had the 5th best wOBA, 4th best OBP, 5th best BB% and 3rd highest HR total among all AL Of’ers.

AmericanMovieFan
3 years 9 months ago

So riddle me this: Why do people perceive him as being sub-par to terrible?

3 years 9 months ago

Because people are stupid or uninformed. Swisher’s a pretty good player, much better than people give him credit for.

-C

theyankeefanatic
3 years 9 months ago

the Yanks should pick up Swishers option and then move him for some good prospect pitching…i like Randall Delgado of Atlanta Braves…that makes alot more since than the article posted suggesting a trade of Burnett for Lowe…maybe the Braves throw in Tyler Pastornicky and Zeke Spruill…and the Yanks can pick up Michael Cuddyer or Carlos Beltran to fill in RF…AJ stays in the 5th spot simply because no one wants him…Yanks resign CC and hopefully pick up C.J. Wilson…i could also see the Yanks moving Swisher to the SF-Giants with Eduardo Nunez and prospect pitchers like Adam Warren and David Phelps…if it becomes clear the Giant can’t get Cain to sign a reasonable extention…

NYBravosFan10
3 years 9 months ago

With the way Wren has done things in the past, I don’t think he would trade away all of that for Swisher. He has a reputation for trading away the mediocre for the really really good.

3 years 9 months ago

haha, Swisher doesn’t get you Randall Delgado.

theyankeefanatic
3 years 9 months ago

i don’t know about that…Arodys Vizcaino was given up for Javier Vasquez…and SF Giants gave up one their top pitching prospects just to rent Beltran for 2 months…and the Phillies gave up 3 prospects in their top 10 to get Hunter Pence…

NYBravosFan10
3 years 9 months ago

No seriously, here’s how Frank Wren works.
1)You’re not getting any of our young pitching
2)You’re giving us a star
3)We call the shots as to who you get in return
4)You agree. Period.
Frank Wren is like a mental ninja. He makes other GM’s do lop-sided trades that make them look like complete morons.

3 years 9 months ago

Yunel Escobar for Alex Gonzalez!

3 years 9 months ago

Wrong.  1st rule of being a GM– you’re supposed to bend over backwards for a yankee.

3 years 9 months ago

Huh??

One year of Nick Swisher isn’t going to buy Randall Delgado, Pastornicky, and Spruill.

One year of Swisher isn’t going to bring Delgado or Pastornicky straight-up.

-C

BCRNC
3 years 9 months ago

Whether or not the Braves need more pitching, on what mortal plane should they trade for AJ Burnett?  Let’s see; trade one expensive pitcher who sucks for a more expensive pitcher who sucks.  Do Yankees people not understand that not every team has the money to bur like they do?  This trade idea is insane and should have never been printed.  We are all dumber for having read it.

BCRNC
3 years 9 months ago

Apparently every team in baseball is just waiting to unload their top prospects for the Yankees’ leftovers.  Lowe for Burnett?  Delgado for Swisher?  Nice try.

theyankeefanatic
3 years 9 months ago

Nick Swisher is not a left over…he is a good player…and when you factor in his durabilty over Beltran and his better career power numbers over Michael Cuddyer and the his 10.25 mill will be less than what either one of them will get on the free agent market…it stands to reason that some team will be willing to give up a top 10 prospect or 2 for him…it might be # 7 and 10…but i think he’ll bring back something promising…

theyankeefanatic
3 years 9 months ago

i like Swisher…but i don’t love him and i think some teams will like him enough to give a good prospect package for him…or it may allow the Yanks to get a pitcher with just 1 year remaining on his major league deal…John Danks wouldn’t be my first choice but someone else…like Shawn Marcum or Zach Grienke,if the Yanks feel better about him…and maybe the Yanks give up two of their lesser prospect pitchers like Adam Warren or David Phelps or DJ Mitchell…or maybe Austin Romine and or Edurdo Nunez…so Swisher with two others might get a deal done…so although i like Swisher…i would put him in a package to get Marcum or Cain or Gio Gonzaez(although he has multiple years under team control)…

AmericanMovieFan
3 years 9 months ago

There is no scenario in which Swisher is traded for Gio Gonzalez. The A’s gave Swisher that contract specifically to make him appealing in a flip and it’s paid off for them. Trading away Gonzalez would nullify the value of Swisher’s initial trade out of Oakland. There’s just no point from Oakland’s stand point.

theyankeefanatic
3 years 9 months ago

oh yeah…i said Swisher with two Yankee prospects and i mention quite a few and there others who Oakland may find appealing that the Yanks are willing to part ways with…maybe even one of the Killer B’s…and Swisher could be flipped again at the trade deadline to a playoff bound team with a need…and he will bring back draft picks if he is not traded…so Swisher could end up bringing in 5 or even six players in one year…so he can be flipped…think about it.

brian310
3 years 9 months ago

How do they plan on acquiring John Danks? If you want him, take one of our bad contracts as well (Dunn, Peavy, and/or Rios)

Fifty_Five
3 years 9 months ago

Try reading the actual article. MLBTR was so nice they even put in a nice link for ya

brian310
3 years 9 months ago

This speculation doesn’t even matter. Sox would be dumb to move him. Lock him up with an extension

Whowonthe2009WorldSeries
3 years 9 months ago

They tried.  He said no.

brian310
3 years 9 months ago

Honestly if I were the White Sox front office, I would be ok with just shedding payroll. I know they may not do it like this, but I would like them to be able to attach a big contract with someone who actually has value, at least to a team that is able to absorb a contract

Taskmaster75
3 years 9 months ago

I’d take the gamble on Peavy personally.

brian310
3 years 9 months ago

As the Yankees? Yeah I could see that because I am sure they would have a hole or a few in their rotation and they would have money to afford him.

3 years 9 months ago

I totally support letting CC go if he wants too much. Halladay is making 20M a year why CC hinks he deserves more? He hasn’t stepped up the last 2 years. Also, where is De Jesus supposed to play?

AmericanMovieFan
3 years 9 months ago

DeJesus is this fantasy of people’s where they seem to think he’s poised to be a difference maker, when he’s never been more than a hypothetical difference maker.

Swisher is one of those guys where his streakiness belies his consistently strong year-end numbers. He’s also cheap so he’s an easier scapegoat than a guy like A-Rod. I love Swisher and lament the fact that people forget the periods during the year in which he carries the Yankees on his shoulders. He has those months where he single-handedly keeps us in games offensively and then at the end of the year we act like he didn’t secure a good 10+ wins for us earlier on, of which all those wins were as crucial as the last two weeks’ worth.

Also, his hitting in the ALDS wasn’t atrocious. He had a couple of singles and a home run. That’s no worse than team average and probably better.

Why aren’t we ragging on the impotent post-season bat of Tex instead? (I know, because his contract is guaranteed and unmovable.)

Anyway, I believe in Nick Swisher and support his continued residency in right field at Yankee stadium for as long as he puts up the year-end numbers he’s put up every year his entire career.

theyankeefanatic
3 years 9 months ago

i don’t hate Swisher in fact i think he is a good player…and i think many teams value him…but if he can bring in cheap talented pitching or even great expensive pitching albeit in a package with other Yankee prospects then so be it…because if the SF Giants decide that Matt Cain is unsignable for an extention he will be on the trade market…and they do need offense…alot of good pitching teams can use an extra bat and Swisher could bring back a nice piece…The Yanks are a very good offensive team and their rotation can get them to the playoff…but they don’t have strong playoff pitchers…so they need to look for that beyond all things and as long as they don’t have to take a major step backwards to acquire the pitching then they should do it…and that’s where Michael Cuddyer and Carlos Beltran come in…one of them can take Swisher’s place…

3 years 9 months ago

I like your thinking.

Matt Cain would be perfect. However, there is nothing of interest that the Giants would want from the Yankees. Swisher and catching prospects for Cain? Yeah, I am not even that stupid to make a trade like that when the Giants have Buster Posey coming back. Despite the fact I am a HUGE Swisher fan, there is plenty of hitting to buy this year off the Free Agent market to support that Giants pitching staff why would they make a video game type trade?

3 years 9 months ago

I like your thinking.

Matt Cain would be perfect. However, there is nothing of interest that the Giants would want from the Yankees. Swisher and catching prospects for Cain? Yeah, I am not even that stupid to make a trade like that when the Giants have Buster Posey coming back. Despite the fact I am a HUGE Swisher fan, there is plenty of hitting to buy this year off the Free Agent market to support that Giants pitching staff why would they make a video game type trade?

TimotheusATL
3 years 9 months ago

I’d rather just eat the Lowe contract and cut him than trade him for Burnett. Ugh.