Quick Hits: Greinke, Astros, Votto, Padres

On this day in 1970, the Cardinals sent first baseman/outfielder Willie Montanez to the Phillies as part of a compensation package for Curt Flood refusing to report to Philadelphia when he was dealt in October of 1969.  Flood's story is now part of baseball lore but Montanez would go on to have a solid career of his own.  Montanez played 14 years in the majors and hit .275/.327/.402 for his career.  Here's a look at tonight's links..

  • Buster Olney of ESPN.com (Insider sub. req'd) writes that in order for Brewers pitcher Zack Greinke to restore his value, the hurler has to to alter the perception that he can be a troublesome clubhouse presence.  Olney writes that there are already some teams who won't consider him because of the reputation he earned in Kansas city.
  • The Astros were able to land outfielder Justin Maxwell off of waivers from the Yankees earlier today thanks to their top position on the waiver wire.  Houston GM Jeff Luhnow says that while he hopes to win more games, he plans on taking advantage of their wire position, writes MLB.com's Brian McTaggart.
  • Locking up Joey Votto doesn't come cheap but the Reds made the right move when they made him a $200MM man, opines B.J. Bethel of the Dayton Daily News.  The Reds, he writes, have not produced a bona fide superstar since the days of Barry Larkin and Eric Davis.
  • Jay Paris of the North County Times thinks that Padres owner John Moores needs to do more to endear himself to fans if he hopes to keep the club's attendance numbers up.

15 Responses to Quick Hits: Greinke, Astros, Votto, Padres Leave a Reply

  1. Willie Montanez is my all-time replacement player 1B–baseball-reference.com WAR calculations place his career WAR at 0.0. FanGraphs gives him a much-more-generous 11.5, reflecting the different methodologies between the two sites. Either way, whenever viewing WAR numbers for 1B, keep Montanez in mind as your measuring stick for replacement value.

  2. jb226 3 years ago

    I do not have an Insider subscription, so maybe this is all covered in the article.  But I have never heard Greinke referred to as a troublesome clubhouse presence until now.

    Now, I think we all know he has some social/anxiety issues and I would be thoroughly unsurprised if that manifested itself as a person who is aloof and uncomfortable around most people, but I would not declare that “troublesome.”  People with these kinds of psychological issues set up barriers, and simply acknowledging that you can not get past them unless they let you is all it takes to avoid “trouble.”

    So what exactly is the reputation that Buster is referring to?

    • I was curious about that too. 

      I’m guessing he must be referring to his last year with the Royals where he demanded to be traded. I think Greinke admitted later he was largely disinterested in pitching for the Royals and didn’t give his best since the front office wasn’t interested in putting a winning team around him. If a team were to sign him and they aren’t winning, he’ll probably grow disinterested in the games and barely try.

      • Otis26 3 years ago

        Greinke is an annoying headcase. The players didn’t talk a lot about it in KC because he was their best player. He tends to sulk when things aren’t going his way (you can see that in the comments he makes in interviews) or the team isn’t winning as much as he’d like.

        Some fans in KC have asked about re-signing him after the season. IMHO that would be a mistake. You guys can keep him. Just hope that he doesn’t get disgruntled with your team though – because then he’ll pitch horribly so he can get traded. He was a great pitcher for KC, but I never want to see him in a KC uniform again.

        • jb226 3 years ago

          Well, that’s fair enough I guess.  I’m not sure it’s a big deal because frankly if you’re going to play out the (probably) close to $100MM it’s likely to take for Greinke, you expect to be winning and winning consistently.

          The sulkiness I suspect is a factor of the social problems and the fact that he he’s in a job where he can’t avoid press.  I’d be worried about bringing him to a big market (I’m a Cubs fan and I would be very hesitant) but not about the sulkiness itself.

        • ItsAllOurBlood 3 years ago

          The biggest gripe I have with Greinke is his lack of appreciation for the Royals. A good comparable for what Zack should have been is Danny Duffy. A few years ago, Danny Duffy wasn’t sure baseball was what he wanted to do with his life. The Royals told him “You can go, but know you always have a place here.” Duffy left and worked BS jobs, getting his head straight. He came back, became a top prospect, and is now pitching on the major league team. He has publicly stated that he loves the Royals organization for their understanding, and he wants to spend his entire career in KC.

          Greinke, on the other hand, completely broke down. He was diagnosed with multiple mental issues, and was told his social anxiety might keep him from ever pitching again. Instead of discarding him like a failed prospect, the Royals stuck by him. They gave him a lengthy break from the majors, got him FOUR therapists to address is many issues, and played a very active role in nursing him back to mental health because they saw potential in him as both a person and a player.

          After all that work, Zack made his way back to Kansas City and won a little ditty called the “Cy Young.” Is that important? Who can really say? But what is important is Zack’s complete lack of loyalty. The Royals stood by him in his hard times, and after he found success, he refused to do the same. The Royals were clearly rebuilding, and well. They were named the number one farm system in baseball the year Zack asked to be traded. But no, he wanted out, because he wanted to win and the Royals wouldn’t be winning soon enough for his tastes.

          Zack could be here today, supported by an offense of new-look Billy Butler, Eric Hosmer, Mike Moustakas, finally-clicking Alex Gordon and Lorenzo Cain. He could be backed by a bullpen with the likes of Greg Holland and All Star Aaron Crow. He could be leading a rotation of new-approach Luke Hochevar and rookie-cum-strikeout-master Danny Duffy. But he isn’t. Instead, we got some prospects and Alcides Escobar, who wants to be here. I’ll take that any day over a pouty baby with no sense of loyalty.

          • YanksFanSince78 3 years ago

            Just curious…other than the fact that he broke into the mlb with them what more gratitude does he owe them other than a “thanks for being my first”? 

            It’s not like they EVER made a serious attempt to win with him.

  3. Braydon Gervais 3 years ago

    The Reds, he writes, have not produced a bona fide superstar since the days of Barry Larkin and Eric Davis.”

    Um…Ken Griffey Jr? Seriously? 

  4. Redlegs55 3 years ago

    Well Seattle did produce him but you can’t say Cincinnati didn’t have an influence on him

  5. Best thing Moores can do to endear himself to San Diego fans is to sell quickly. His divorce and subsequent abandonment of San Diego during the same to Moorad has left a bad taste in their mouths.

    See and sell quickly.

  6. Greinke was top in MLB in k/9 and XFIP and 9th in FIP in 2011. If that is not performing to expectations then he deserves highest salary in baseball because he must be far and away the best pitcher in MLB.

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