Olney’s Latest: Red Sox, Fielder, Cubs, Mariners

In today's Insider-only blog post, ESPN's Buster Olney wrote about how Daniel Bard's potential transition to rotation could turn the Red Sox's staff from a question mark into a strength. He says they will look to add a starter or two via free agency as the asking prices drop, and notes that the Yankees are taking a similar approach. Here are the rest of Olney's rumors…

  • The acquisition of Anthony Rizzo changes nothing for the Cubs and their pursuit of Prince Fielder. Olney calls it an "apples and oranges" situation given the price tag of the two players. The Cubs' brass has been acting with zero urgency in talks with Fielder, and they've always been leery about giving him a long-term deal.
  • The team most interested in Fielder — and most willing to pay big — might be the Mariners. Whether or not he wants to play in Seattle is another matter.
  • Baseball officials as well as some in the union are under the assumption that the playoff field will be increased to ten teams in 2012. Playoff expansion will happen in 2013, but the new collective bargaining agreement gives the league the option of putting it in play this year.

This post has been corrected to say that the Mariners "might be" the club most interested in Fielder, not that they are.


147 Responses to Olney’s Latest: Red Sox, Fielder, Cubs, Mariners Leave a Reply

  1. Intersting… I wouldn’t have thought Seattle would be the number 1 team after Fielder.. I just hope they get him. I think they can though. Obviously, Fielder won’t go to the Cubs after they got Rizzo.

    • If you have an apple you don’t really need an orange.

    • Ronald Sposato 4 years ago

       You really think it’s obvious that Fielder won’t go to the Cubs after they got Rizzo?

      Why?

      • Guest 4 years ago

        there is really no need for the cubs to go after fielder, they have made it obvious that they are rebuilding, so they wont compete for at least 3+ years, why not save money and get votto in 2 years, or some other fa.

      • Because they are rebuilding and Rizzo is a pretty good looking prospect at first. Why would they trade away their top pitching prospect for a top 1st base prospect, only to turn around and give Fielder a big free agent contract? Maybe they could trade away Rizzo, but that would be sort of unnecessary.

      • To rebuild though, you need a veteran with talent that can set the pace in the locker room and on the field.

        • ubercubsfan 4 years ago

          Cubs don’t need a pace set at the buffet.

        • eYeDEF 4 years ago

          Not at the expense of developing your uber-prospect at 1st base in Rizzo. Not like there’s a DH spot to stick Prince at.

    • Leonard Washington 4 years ago

      I could def see Fielder on the Mariners. Seattle has a solid rotation and Fielder would help the lineup quite a bit.

      • JP 4 years ago

        Prince would get walked 200 times a year in the Seattle lineup..

        • Leonard Washington 4 years ago

          Maybe. Doesn’t matter though. Seattle has a very solid rotation with great young talent still coming up in the next year or so. The pen is decent. If the Mariners could get Prince on something like 7/8 years they could add some other solid bats around him through FA and trades over the next couple off seasons and put themselves in a position to contend.

        • sonofsnake 4 years ago

          MATH TIME!  Assuming Prince Fielder received the same number of plate appearances this season that he did last season (692) and we regress Fielders slash lines to his career averages (.282/.390/.540) 200 walks would give Prince an isolated OBP of .289 which would translate to a .282/.571/.540 slash line or a 1.111 OPS.

    • Olney said they “might be” the team most interested in him, not that they definitely are.

  2. cubsfan97 4 years ago

    Soooo, is there 10 teams in this year? 

  3. flickadave 4 years ago

    Both the Yanks and the Sox bottom feeding this year. That’s got to disappoint some agents.

  4. JohnnyC 4 years ago

    Prince will have to DH though. Don’t see him supplanting Smoak at first base.

    • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

      trade smoak…. you can’t pay a DH 20+ mil a year

      well you can, but it wouldnt be smart.. plus does Fielder want to fulltime DH?

      • Bob9988 4 years ago

        As long as there is offense, Seattle doesn’t care if he plays DH.  SCORE SOME FREAKIN RUNS!!

        • redsx968 4 years ago

          Seattle obviously doesn’t care who goes where as long as there are runs, but I don’t think Prince wants to be a full-time DH, at least right away. So basically you gotta let Prince play first IMO. Then do what you wish with Smoak. Trade him, or put him at DH (though that would kinda be like when Adam Lind when he DH’d with the Jays, except worse)

          • Guest 4 years ago

            smoak has not done anything major in his 2 years, i dont really think you need to worry about fielder taking his slot, you are talking about a mvp caliber player.

          • redsx968 4 years ago

            I didn’t say they should worry about him taking Smoak’s spot. I said they should sign him and then deal with Smoak after. Fielder obviously takes precedence. 

      • xthetouristx 4 years ago

        Or DH Smoak.

      • Leonard Washington 4 years ago

        Have them switch off between 1B/DH.

      • I’m pretty sure Smoak still has options. He was kind of rushed thru the minors by Texas and rushed to the majors by Seattle after the trade. Let him play in Tacoma for the first half while they M’s figure out what they have with Wells and Carp playing LF and DHing.

        Smoak’s trade value right now has to be pretty low. Let him go rock in the PCL and build trade value if you want to trade him. If Gutierrez can’t bounce back or if he does and gets traded them move Wells to CF (or RF if Ichiro retires LOL) and Carp to LF then Smoak can DH.

        There are a lot of options besides trading him right now.

    • Really? You would play Smoak over Fielder? Do you actually watch baseball or just chime in when you feel like it?

      • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

        I’m pretty sure he was just talking defensively.

    • why not put smoak at DH?

      • Rangersfan32 4 years ago

        He’s a plus defender, I’d give him a shot at 3B.

        • xthetouristx 4 years ago

          This is the funniest thing I’ve read in a long time.  I hope it wasn’t meant seriously.

        • cookmeister 4 years ago

          havn’t seen a left handed third baseman since T-Ball

        • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

          small sample size (only 1 year) but how does a -0.8 UZR indicate he’s a plus defender.

          • sonofsnake 4 years ago

            Well he did put up a 2.2 UZR the season before, also he played through injury for a decent portion of the season. 

          • sonofsnake 4 years ago

            Well he did put up a 2.2 UZR the season before, also he played through injury for a decent portion of the season. 

    • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

      right because he’s put up some amazing stats right? in no way am i saying smoak is doo doo on a stick but i love how you think fielder couldn’t “supplant” a guy who hasn’t proved himself yet.

      • MaineSox 4 years ago

        Probably 2/3 of the teams in MLB would be foolish to say no to replacing their current first baseman with Fielder (contract aside).

  5. Lunchbox45 4 years ago

    how does acquiring Rizzo not change their interest level in Fielder?

    apples and oranges? how is that an accurate statement considering its an NL team and they both play the same position.

    terrible

    • redsx968 4 years ago

      I think in the short term that would mean Rizzo getting another year of minor league seasoning. but I agree. Rizzo drastically affects the Cubs’ pursuit of Fielder. 

      • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

        if Fielder would sign a 2 year deal, then Olney would make sense

        but given that’s its a long term deal, in 1 or 2 years when Rizzo forces your hand, what do you do with Fielder?

        • redsx968 4 years ago

          Agreed agreed. The only choice really would be to use Rizzo as trade fodder again. But, again, that makes no sense since giving up Cashner would seem to suggest they have a vested interest in Rizzo. Usually I just ignore Olney lol

          • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

            unless Hoyer gets another job, i think rizzo is staying put

        • johnsilver 4 years ago

          You may be onto something there with that 1-2 year deal, even though don’t think you were serious with regards to Fielder. 1 year even.

          I don’t see anyone now who has a history of spending big with much interest in him, or that would want him and be willing to spend big over a 5 year deal and that is not my natural distaste for him speaking, but looking at teams out there with a job available.

          Carlos Pena might be an easier client right now for Boras to get inked, though he will probably be on a 1 year deal anyway.

        • If Rizzo “forces your hand’ when you have Fielder, you trade his ass.

    • Guest 4 years ago

      buster with some misinformation.  i thought the cubs were out on prince awhile ago.  no sense in locking up a guy like fielder long-term for big money while rebuilding.  rizzo makes a lot more sense for their immediate organizational plans.

    • Coollet 4 years ago

      one is a big fat ripe orange, the other is a fresh apple that isnt quite ripe yet.

    • rockfordone 4 years ago

      Buster is clueless – I wish Tim would stop with him.
      Cubs get Rizzo but still want Fielder. Makes sense??????????????

    • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

      Because Fielder is a proven game changer and Rizzo isn’t? Even if they do acquire Fielder they can attempt Rizzo at one of the corners if they wanted. I know you know Rizzo isn’t a proven guy so I won’t point that out.

      Even so, I can’t see Theo signing Fielder even if he did fall in his lap. Can’t see Theo wasting 3 or 4 years of Fielder in his prime, knowing that it wouldn’t make them a serious contender. Cubs have the 6th overall and we all know how much Theo loves his 1st rnd picks.

      • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

         cubs pick is protected.

        that being said, your last paragraph is exactly the point.. if the cubs were in the yanks position, then sure, signing fielder because your a playoff bound team makes perfect sense..

        but for the cubs, a young cheap 1B with potential makes much much more sense.

        The teams that make the most sense for Fielder are the dodgers, jays and nats. all 3 teams have no where close to better options and all 3 are trying to get better to win more games.

        • MaineSox 4 years ago

           My guess is either the Dodgers or Nats (probably Nats), AA just seems more creative/smarter than to just throw a bunch of money and years at a big name free agent, particularly one with as questionable of a future as Fielder.

          • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

            It actually makes the most sense for the jays, given that their 1b has posted a sub  .300 obp the last 2 years and they can dh him eventually.

            It really depends on the contract.. if its a 5/6 year deal. i’d be disappointed if AA didn’t pull the trigger… if its 7-10 years.. i wouldnt blame him one bit. 

          • MaineSox 4 years ago

            Getting a good 1B makes tons of sense for the Jays, I’m just not sure that Fielder is it (I’m also of the opinion that Fielder will end up getting at least 6 years, at 5 years I think he starts making sense for lots of teams).  I could see them being in on either of the Angels first basemen if they end up on the trade block, or I could see them ending up with Smoak if the Mariners really did sign Fielder.  But then, I thought they would have been in on Rizzo and they didn’t end up with him (and they could have easily given a better package than the Cubs) so maybe I’m wrong.

            ADD: Moreso Morales than Trumbo when I was talking about the Angels 1Bs.

          • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

            I agree about the Rizzo statement..

            it is possible that AA thinks Lind is capable of more.. I used to think the same. but i’m just not sure anymore. 

    • What he was saying is that the Cubs were never really interested in Prince in the first place, so this deal doesn’t change anything… They are still not interested in him…

      I see NO WAY the Cubs sign Prince under any circumstance anyway (even if they did have interest), unless he takes 4 years… That would give the Cubs about 2 years to win with him before his 4 years is up.

      I personally don’t think the Cubs ever had interest in him anyway, and I am pretty sure that all of the Cubs + Prince talk was created by the media.

  6. I think adding Bard to the rotation totally cripples their bullpen.  Melancon is going to be a heart attack for Sox fans, they just don’t know it yet. Then it would all hinge on Bailey’s health.

    • aricollins 4 years ago

      Melancon-Bailey-Albers is actually a pretty strong ‘pen.

      Papelbon was supposed to be a heart attack for Sox fans last year. I’ll trust the underlying peripherals first.

      • notsureifsrs 4 years ago

        they also still have jenks

      • Guest 4 years ago

        what i don’t understand is philly signing papelbon when madson seemed to be a little better….i think philly is going to regret that one

        • MaineSox 4 years ago

          Madson is better than Papelbon?  Papelbon has only had one season worse than Madson’s best season.  Let me say that another way: Madson’s best season was only slightly better than Papelbon’s worst.

          • Guest 4 years ago

            ok i looked at some numbers and i admit i was wrong….appreantly, everytime espn came on, they always honed in on papelbons blown saves so for that, im wrong….unlike alot of people on this site i will admit if i talked outta turn….i did watch madson alot last year and he seemed pretty good and with lidge coming back late, it just helped bolster the pen….

    • MaineSox 4 years ago

      In no way does it cripple their bullpen.  Jenks/Aceves in the 7th, Melancon in the 8th, and Bailey in the 9th is more than respectable.  If Bailey gets hurt Melancon closes; if Melancon is ineffective Jenks pitches the 8th.

      It’s also not certain that Bard sticks in the rotation (there is a large percent of people who believe he’ll be back in the ‘pen before opening day) and if he ends up back in the ‘pen a 7-8-9 of Melancon – Bard – Bailey would be outstanding.

      • Guest 4 years ago

        isnt aceves going to the rotation, and jenks just had surgery?
        im still annoyed that the yanks let aceves go, he was a good innings eater, although i dont know how long he will hold up pitching 110+ innings out of the pen for the sox.

        • MaineSox 4 years ago

          They’ve told both Bard and Aceves to come to spring training ready to start, but they haven’t guaranteed either one of them a spot in the rotation, and most assume that it will be one or the other in the rotation, not both.

          Jenks’ return for opening day is questionable, but just the fact that he may be able to go opening day leads me to believe that even if he can’t, it wont be much later than opening day.

      • Guest 4 years ago

        hey bud im telling you i think after a month you are going to want to run melancon out of town….i got to watch him blow alot of saves and what happens with him is once someone gets a hit on him, the flood gates open and opposing team just goes to town on him and brad mills just sits there with a duhhh look on his face and lets him keep pitching…Sox fans will not like this guy at all…..if jenks and bailey stay health with aceves in the mix, your pen is on cruise control….

        • MaineSox 4 years ago

          Maybe, but he wont be our closer, and his stats suggest that regardless of what the perception is/was he is a very good pitcher: FIP of 3.25 this year and 3.50 last year, 3.14 and 3.54 xFIPs, 86 and 87 FIP-s, 2.93 and 3.12 SIERAs… all of it suggests he’s a very good pitcher.

          • Guest 4 years ago

            like i said to you before you always have good nuggets as far as numbers go….now im going to bring in the one number nobody keeps track of and thats the one where when he comes into a game, everyone’s heart rate jumps up….to put it best he is kind of like kevin gregg lite….he makes things look like an adventure when they should be routine…if he dosen’t close, he may have a chance but im telling you i watched him alot and even though his numbers show one thing, his actions on the mound tell a whole other story…after a month of melancon, ill get back to you to see how thats working out

        • Hal Jordan 4 years ago

          Melancon blew 5 saves last year, and a few of those were multiple inning save attempts where he gave up the lead during his second inning of work.

          • Guest 4 years ago

            i will admit brad mills was bad at bullpen management but at the same time is there a law saying thall shall not pitch more than one inning for a save??  mo rivera did it as many others have done it too….if you make him strictly 7th or 8th inning guy it might work out im just saying i watched him in action and i wasn’t impressed……

    • Guest 4 years ago

      you are spot on there….melancon is like marmol from the cubs….you are waiting for the next disaster

  7. gradylittle 4 years ago

    I know Bard could potentially be really good in the rotation but I don’t think it’s a lock that he’ll preform well at all. I’m really nervous about that and I still think they should pick up someone else for the number 4 spot. 

    • andrewyf 4 years ago

      Plus, he’ll be limited to at the absolute most, 130 innings. What are the Sox going to do when he hits that limit? Or are they going to put him on some kind of extended break so he’ll be ready for the playoffs? This is something you do when you have 4 solid starters. The Sox have 2.

      • gradylittle 4 years ago

        I agree with you for the most part, this is why I think they should most definitely get pitching depth like AAAA guys. Bard, at most, is going to be a number 5 guy and they desperately need a veteran innings eater. 

        • notsureifsrs 4 years ago

          signing a veteran innings eater is likely a waste of time. dobrount and miller are both capable of starting at a level not unlike what e.g. joe saunders would give you in fenway. tazawa will be another option later in the year and alex wilson may be as well. though he can do it, aceves has no business starting; his value is maximized as a long man who can occasionally put out a 7th inning fire

          the best solution remains signing oswalt or kuroda and letting that fifth spot be filled by the above mentioned when bard needs time off later in the year

      • MaineSox 4 years ago

        First of all the Sox have three “solid” starters not two, and second, they can use off days to skip his turn in the rotation a couple of times (as well as outright skipping him and giving someone else a spot start), and Dice-K will be back sometime around August.

        Plus, I’m not sure that he’ll be limited strictly to 130 innings.  There have been several other pitchers who have made larger jumps in innings recently and been effective and not been injured, and he’s over the age that the Verducci effect is generally thought to apply to.

        He’s quite obviously not going to throw 200+ innings but I wouldn’t be at all surprised if he threw 150-160.  If he averaged 5.5 innings per start he could make 30 starts and be at 165 innings, and if he averaged 6 innings per start he could throw 27 starts and be at 160 innings.  That would be plenty of innings out of your 4th-5th starter.

        • Guest 4 years ago

          but if one of their top 3 goes down they have no one to eat innings, buchholz and beckett there is a good chance one could get injured

          • MaineSox 4 years ago

            Sure, there is a relatively good chance that any pitcher gets hurt, it’s just a matter of how much time they miss.  If Beckett or Buchholz gets injured and misses a start or two there isn’t a problem; if one gets injured and misses a month or more, then there could be a problem (but they do have several backup plans so it wouldn’t necessarily be a problem), the problem would be if two of them are out at the same time, but any team would have problems if they lost two of their best pitchers.

    • MaineSox 4 years ago

      From everything I’ve seen it appears that they are still trying to.

  8. redsx968 4 years ago

    I can even explain how worried I am about the rotation. Bard could transition well, but thats a huge question mark. As is Aceves. Buchholz is an injury concern still, and with Beckett you never really know. I think Beckett and Lester will hold it down, but 3-5 are question marks. They REALLY need a veteran placeholder badly. 

    • MaineSox 4 years ago

      I keep seeing it, but no one has explained to me how Buchholz is an injury concern?  I could see someone wondering how well he’ll pitch (particularly earlier in the season) because he hasn’t hardly pitched in nearly a year, but to say that he is an injury concern doesn’t really make much sense to me.  He was injured last year, and ended up having to have surgery, but he was cleared to pitch again before the end of last season, so six month or whatever later it shouldn’t be a problem at all.

      • redsx968 4 years ago

        Sorry I should’ve rephrased that. I don’t agree with the reports either that make him sound like Rich Harden or something. I meant that in terms of this years rotation he’s a concern coming off an injury so a bit of a question mark. Sorry for the confusion

  9. BoSoxSam 4 years ago

    Bard as a starter makes me nervous simply because we won’t really know anything about it until the season truly starts. Oh and because, even if he’s a success ala Ogando, he’ll probably have to be shut down come playoff time, which’ll be a bit of a drag. All that said, I’m optimistic about it, cause he really does have nasty stuff, and enough pitches to go for 5-6 solid innings.

    Plus, a rotation of:
    Lester
    Beckett
    Buchholz
    Bard
    basically anybody else, possibly Dice-K later in the year

    Ends up looking pretty good, of course only if Buch can come back at close to full strength, and Bard will pan out. But then suddenly, Cherington’s plan of looking for bargain deals on starters looks just fine, since all we’re looking to really fill is a #5 slot. Fill the organization with 4-5 of those caliber players and let them duke it out for the 5th slot, and that could work out pretty well assuming there are no major injuries. Would like some more security than that, and I’m hoping Cherington is planning on adding another arm to the bullpen, but I’m pretty optimistic for 2012.

    • redsx968 4 years ago

      I think Daisuke is out all year no? Not that I want to see him pitch another game for the Sox anyways lol

      • MaineSox 4 years ago

         No, he should come back sometime around August.

    • notsureifsrs 4 years ago

      i don’t know of any reason to doubt buchholz’s strength. he was recovered by the end of last season and should be without any limits in 2012

      the innings limit on bard will become an issue at some point. the current roster is playoff caliber, but it isn’t going to be a cakewalk. when bard is shutdown or transitioned in september, a capable arm has to step in. you don’t want to rely on a two fifth starters down the stretch

      this is why the oswalt/kuroda option is infinitely preferable to the bargain bin stockpiling. when you’ve spent as much money as boston has on crawfords and lackeys, there’s no good excuse for getting cheap on something this important

      • MaineSox 4 years ago

        I wonder if they are picking up these bargain bin guys with the intention/hope of trading for someone at the deadline?  It would be cheaper overall (oh no, the luxury tax!) and would still give them someone before Bard’s inning limit becomes a concern.

      • BoSoxSam 4 years ago

        I didn’t know of any reason either, I just won’t bank on him completely until he actually pitches is all. Just being over-cautious, with the issues we’ve had with injuries the last few years.

        I would love to see Boston nab Oswalt or Kuroda. As MaineSox said though, maybe they’re planning a trade instead, so that they get the better player for when Bard is shut down, but just work with the bargain bin pitchers while Bard is still in the rotation. I agree with you though that they should just go for it and pay a few million more in FA rather than hurt their farm system anymore.

      • llorcs 4 years ago

        “when you’ve spent as much money as boston has on crawfords and lackeys, there’s no good excuse for getting cheap on something this important”

        That statement pretty much nails it.  Why go cheapskate when you’re already in the money barrel up to your eyeballs?  The better teams are getting better still.  Even if it means going over the luxury tax (which for Boston is like paying $10 rather than $6 for a lunch) Boston ‘can’t afford’ to stand pat and still be anything more than just competitive.

    • MaineSox 4 years ago

      I wouldn’t be worried about Bard having to be shut down come playoff time; you can essentially get through the playoffs with 3 starters and a 1-2-3 of Lester – Beckett – Buchholz would be a respectable playoff rotation, plus if there is a concern about it they can always make a move for a starter before the deadline.

      • BoSoxSam 4 years ago

        I just mean, I’d rather have Bard be our spot #4 in the playoffs than some bargain bin player or god forbid Wakefield. You’re right though, it’s not catastrophic. Wouldn’t want to have to shut him down in September though, if we’re right in the middle of a playoff race.

        • MaineSox 4 years ago

          Sure, I mean, it would be great to have another good pitcher who could throw 200+ innings, but I don’t think it’s anything to get worried about if that good pitcher can only throw 150.  They can also skip him in the rotation a few times (off days and/or giving Aceves/Doubront/whoever spot starts) and stretch those 150 innings out through September.

    • Guest 4 years ago

      what about giving harden a shot cheap??

  10. I want to wish Cashner lots of luck in his baseball career. I was looking forward to seeing him in the Cubs future. Rizzo I have followed through baseball leagues involving minor league players and am actually excited to see him step in if LaHair is unable to perform to the Cubs liking. As far as Fielder is concerned I think he would be a great signing for the Cubs if he would settle for a 5-6 year plan with a couple of option years on the back side.

  11. CrustyJuggler 4 years ago

    I think it will come down to whether Fielder wants more years (and maybe more money) to play in Seattle or if he’s willing to take a discount (in years at least) to stay on the east coast with the Nats.  ANY NL team that offers Fielder over 5-6 years is absolutely nuts!

  12. Ronald Sposato 4 years ago

    Fielder probably will not go to the Mariners, but he will also not get 7 years.  The Cubs could sign him and use Rizzo or LaHair as trade pieces for a top level starting pitcher.  They are not through with pitching yet.

    • The Cubs could sign him and use Rizzo or LaHair as trade pieces…
      Bud Selig really ought to look into the Rizzo trade with the Padres, it’s ludicrous! What do all the Red Sox (former and current) executives think they run this league? Plus, if Epstein flips him (Rizzo) and gets some good pitching, I would like to know who really is approving the trades these days! Selig is taking a nap on this one, I am sorry that Rizzo trade shows a lack of respect!

  13. If Prince doesn’t sign in Seattle because he wants to be closer to his family I think that’s nonsense.  If a team is willing to give you 150-200M, how about you move your family.

    • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

      its not that absurd… if it was move your family or no money, then thats valid.

      but its 100+ million to not move your family. so either way

  14. That’s the thing: Rizzo was acquired for way below market value, all Hoyer&Theo have to do at this point is flip Rizzo for someone like Brad Peacock and they have bettered the team greatly.

    Yes, I’m saying they should try to trade Rizzo to TB or even Oakland, who suddenly have a ton of near-ready SP prospects including Peacock, who are legit prospects and not injury-plagued relievers like Cashner, and they will have done the right thing by their team. Rizzo is much better than Barton, Carter, Allen or Kila. Both teams win. 

    Prince+a young high ceiling SP > Rizzo+no one, I can’t think of an easier equation.

    • raffish 4 years ago

      You forgot to mention the behemoth contract in your little equation.  Fielder can go on either side, regardless of Rizzo’s presence.

      Therefore: young high ceiling SP >,<,=,? Rizzo. That's your equation.

      • Since when are the Cubs hard-up for cash? With an opt-out clause it seems like a good fit. The point I was making is that if they wanted to, they could turn around and flip Rizzo and make the team even better by adding more pitching.

        • raffish 4 years ago

          Yeah, but it’s not that simple.  Would Fielder, young high-ceiling pitcher, + current Cubs players be anywhere near where they need to be to be a factor in the NL Central?  And would it be worth the $$ investment for Fielder, especially when he’d become a Soriano-type albatross just about the time Soriano went away?  No DH in the NL.

          I get your point, but Rizzo + patience will probably make more sense in the long-run.

        • what’s the point of an opt out clause? as soon as the cubs start getting good he’ll just opt out

  15. m4r1n3r 4 years ago

    I highly doubt the question is whether Fielder wants to play in Seattle. The real question is will they pay what he wants. THAT is what will determine where he will play. Location has absolutely nothing to do with it. He will play for whoever offers the most money… PERIOD.

  16. BillB325 4 years ago

    To all the people saying the Cubs still want Fielder, I hope you know what he’s saying is that they weren’t ever intrested in giving him a huge deal so it doesn’t really matter that they got Rizzo because they weren’t going after Fielder anyway.

  17. justme 4 years ago

    If im a team looking at first base i deal for kendry he will make less then 3 mill can play first or outfield and in his last 200 games he has hit 45 hrs and batted over 300…yes he has been injury prone but at his current salary and production its well worth the risk…and lets face the angels are going have to move someone kendry the most likely to go….with trumbo and pujios plus the are already about 5 deep with outfield and dh guys,kendry sure sounds better then the 150 mill its going take to land fielder.

  18. justme 4 years ago

    Agreed fielder seems to want this deal for the money obviously and to prove he is worth as much as pujios imo from past statements i think he feels a bit shafted he has put huge numbers over and over but there’s always buts when his name is brought up and what he believes he is worth

  19. justme 4 years ago

    Agreed fielder seems to want this deal for the money obviously and to prove he is worth as much as pujios imo from past statements i think he feels a bit shafted he has put huge numbers over and over but there’s always buts when his name is brought up and what he believes he is worth

  20. Ronlacroix 4 years ago

    Well Jiminy Christmas….the M’s you say are in on the Fielder bidding???? Holy cow and I thought this was ESPN!!!

  21. Red Sox:
    CF Ellsbury .310 25 90 50sb
    2B Pedroia .290 20 80 30sb
    1B Gonzalez .300 40 130
    3B Youkilis .280 20 90
    DH Ortiz .270 30 90
    LF Crawford .290 15 80
    C Saltalamacchia .250 20 65
    RF Sweeny/Kalish/Aviles/McDonald .260 20 90
    SS Scutaro .300 5 50

    UTIL 
    C Shoppach
    INF Punto
    INF/OF Aviles
    OF McDonald

    SP Beckett 2.80
    SP Lester 3.10
    SP Buchholz 3.40
    SP Bard 3.80
    SP Maholm 3.90

    RP Bailey 2.50 35sv
    RP Melancon 2.80
    RP Aceves 2.60
    RP Morales 3.80
    RP Albers 4.00
    RP Doubront 3.60

    I am excited

    • Daniel Lee 4 years ago

      wow youre projected stats overall are way too optimistic. thats the absolute best case scenario you could ever imagine. not gona happen.

  22. Marinersforever71 4 years ago

    If the Mariners trade Justin Smoak and player to be named later from Baltimore Orioles to the Angels, Kendry Morales including Mariners pitchers James Paxton and Sean Kelley to the Orioles, and JJ Hardy w/ pitcher Tommy Hunter, and outfielder/backup 1B Chris Davis to the Mariners would make sense for the three teams to build for years to come. Plus, signing Roy Oswalt for a reasonable deal as third starting pitcher will give the M’s to contend in the American League West just like Detroit Lions did in football this past season. Time for Seattle to bring in some winning traditions.

    • Alex Nelson 4 years ago

      Morales is damaged goods.

    • nictonjr 4 years ago

      Justin Smoak going to send Albert Pujols to the bench??  Why would the Angels want Smoak??

    • scott brecht 4 years ago

      You think JJ Hardy, Tommy Hunter, Chris Davis, and Roy Oswalt would make the Mariners contenders?  Delusional.    

      On a side-note, the only reason the Lions even made the playoffs is because Cutler and Forte both went down.  They were a pretty bad team if you actually watched them play.  

  23. Marinersforever71 4 years ago

    If the Mariners trade Justin Smoak and player to be named later from Baltimore Orioles to the Angels, Kendry Morales including Mariners pitchers James Paxton and Sean Kelley to the Orioles, and JJ Hardy w/ pitcher Tommy Hunter, and outfielder/backup 1B Chris Davis to the Mariners would make sense for the three teams to build for years to come. Plus, signing Roy Oswalt for a reasonable deal as third starting pitcher will give the M’s to contend in the American League West just like Detroit Lions did in football this past season. Time for Seattle to bring in some winning traditions.

  24. scott brecht 4 years ago

    Unless Rizzo mashes his way through Spring Training and LaHair plays awful.  Rizzo will be playing in Des Moines this year.  Hoyer already that their plan is to keep Rizzo down in AAA to shorten up his swing.  Also factor in that he is 22.  It might be worth keeping him down at least another 2 years just to keep his service time down and doesn’t hit his arb years too soon.  

  25. To be clear, Olney said they “might be” the team most interested in him, not that they definitely are.

  26. To be clear, Olney said they “might be” the team most interested in him, not that they definitely are.

  27. To be clear, Olney said they “might be” the team most interested in him, not that they definitely are.

  28. To be clear, Olney said they “might be” the team most interested in him, not that they definitely are.

  29. To be clear, Olney said they “might be” the team most interested in him, not that they definitely are.

  30. Right now I don’t think anyone is bidding.. hence Olney’s propaganda.  Maybe its time for the Boras “Mystery Team”.

  31. Lunchbox45 4 years ago

    nationals?

  32. Guest 4 years ago

    and the friggin mariners can have em… its being reported locally{dc,baltimore area} is that rizzo told boras to take a hike, he wasn’t giving fielder the years he wanted…boras was not happy so he went right over rizzo’s head and ran to ted lerner and now “uncle teddy” is going to ultimately make the decision….i as a nats fan personally dont want him….i just dont want a soriano type albatross hanging over the franchise after 4 years….when really the team needs a center fielder if werth dosen’t work out

  33. Just to clarify, Olney said they “might be” the team most interested in him, not that they definitely are. 

  34. Guest 4 years ago

    I think a good compromise might be having an opt-out clause after three years on a six year deal.  However, structure the deal so Prince has incentive to stay with the team for all six years.  i.e.  6/150 guaranteed, can opt out after three years. (first three years pay $65m, if he doesn’t opt out, he gets a $10m bonus before year four, then the final three years at $25m/season).  Maybe throw in a team option for a seventh year at $27.5m with a $5m buyout to make the contract 6/155 guaranteed.

  35. Guest 4 years ago

    yeah…..the nippon ham fighters!!! gotta replace yu right???/sarcasm/

  36. Guest 4 years ago

    i still haven’t given up on them with fielder, but i feel they’re not going to bend over backwards to sign him.  i could see them jumping in if the bidding gets in the 5-6 year range, but not where boras currently contends the market is.

  37. I hate the new playoff system.

  38. How about a mutual opt-out clause… that way if the player stinks the team isn’t stuck with him?

  39. melonis_rex 4 years ago

    Opt-out clauses actually benefit the team signing him as well. 

    Most surplus value in a contract comes in the beginning, when the player’s in his prime and is (usually) getting paid less due to backloading. There is no question that Fielder will at least rake for the next 3 years, until he turns 31. 

    Fielder rakes and provides surplus value, opts out after 3 years (he’ll still be in the back end of his prime, 31-32), and his decline years become another team’s problem.  He’ll DEFINITELY test the market if he rakes, because it will continue to inflate. 

    It’s also team leverage, so if he does decline fast, its a tool that can be used in exchange for a lower AAV.

    Think AJ Burnett and the Blue Jays.

  40. Rangersfan32 4 years ago

    Prince and Boras would never agree

  41. Guest 4 years ago

    how about this:if i were a team in on fielder i would offer 4 yr at 92mil.that is 23 a year and there would be no options on either side…when the 4 is up, the contract is over…he will be 31 and still might be able to get himself another payday potentially….i would want him in those 27-31yrs old range and thats it…….if more gm’s and owners did this type of thing, you could really get some of these contracts under control…..i really dont want him, but its for folks who do that i suggest this idea

  42. Natsfan89 4 years ago

    Uhhhh…it’s his money and his team so even if that hadn’t happened it would have ultimately been Lerner’s decision regardless. Prince is 27 so, assuming he’s like his daddy, he’ll 5 good power years left.

    As long as it’s not backloaded like Werth’s is then a 6 year deal shouldn’t be an albatross at all, especially when you consider the increase in tv revenue. The size of the DC media market can support a payroll much larger than the 58~ million the Nats spent last year.

  43. Guest 4 years ago

    right…it is his money but he put rizzo in charge of the team…now if you are drinking the prince cool aid, you and i are going to agree to disagree because after 31or32 you are asking a guy who is 5-11 275 to keep up the same level of play?? it will be murder on the knees, i know that to be fact and god knows what else will pop up…..im telling you anything past 4 is a huge mistake….

  44. justme 4 years ago

    agreed a short term contract and he is a big asset…long term u just drop the et   his weight problems will catch up to him as he ages.I think you could go 4 years at a higher priced contract and get enough value from him to justify it for a contending team….but he seems determined to get 7 to 10 years

  45. raffish 4 years ago

    Are you a skinny troll?

  46. MarinersFan24 4 years ago

    You’re a smart one.

  47. eYeDEF 4 years ago

    Because:

    1. The market always inflates and never deflates. Inflation does that.
    2. When he becomes eligible in 4 years, the Yankees and Red Sox might be buyin’ which would drive up his price all the more
    3. There will always be a team willing to take a chance that he’ll continue to rake and pay him based on his production of the previous 4 years

    He’ll still be making a premium for his next four years. It’s just that the following four years after that he’ll be set to make an even higher bonanza should his production stay steady because his new salary will be adjusted for inflation.

  48. Guest 4 years ago

    thank you……you just made me save a few minutes in typing….and don’t take a guy seriously who has a serial killer as his avatar

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