Rosenthal On Rangers, Angels, Cubs, Marte

It’s time to consider the Angels and Rangers superpowers, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports writes. Lucrative regional TV deals, an abundance of star talent and the flexibility to make further moves have turned the Angels and Rangers into imposing organizations. Both clubs have both scouted Zack Greinke and Cole Hamels, but the Rangers view those pitchers as rentals and are hesitant to part with top prospects for either one. Here are more of Rosenthal’s latest notes:

  • The Brewers haven’t given up on the 2012 season, but they’ve talked about exploiting the Angels-Rangers rivalry, Rosenthal writes. Many executives believe the return for a pitcher like Greinke or Hamels will be surprisingly low because the new collective bargaining agreement prevents teams from obtaining compensation for players acquired midseason.
  • Ryan Dempster, who can veto any trade, has said he would consider going to any contender. The Cubs want to assume the majority of the $6.1MM remaining on Dempster’s salary to obtain better prospects in return. Rosenthal suggests interested teams might look to extend Dempster this summer and keep him off of the free agent market.
  • The Cubs wanted a Gio Gonzalez-like return for Matt Garza last offseason, Rosenthal reports.
  • Rosenthal suggests the Phillies could trade Jimmy Rollins, but points out that the shortstop earns $11MM per season through 2014. “That contract, boy oh boy,” one executive said, suggesting it could deter interested teams.
  • Baseball people express doubt about the star potential of Pirates outfield prospect Starling Marte, Rosenthal reports.
  • The Rockies are pleased that Ramon Hernandez has helped Wilin Rosario develop and don't seem overly earger to trade the veteran Hernandez.
  • The Tigers are scouting Marco Scutaro and they aren’t the only team with interest in the veteran infielder. The Brewers inquired on Scutaro, but talks didn’t progress.

54 Responses to Rosenthal On Rangers, Angels, Cubs, Marte Leave a Reply

  1. Redsox7 3 years ago

    So Dempster can go to almost any AL team

  2. Nick Sossamon 3 years ago

    The fact that both Hamels and Greinke have consistently maintained that they will test the FA market along with the new CBA compensation clause, I kind of agree that we won’t see a huge haul for these guys.

    And if the Rangers really wanted Greinke they could get him, and I’m an Angels fan.  We can’t even begin to compete with what their farm system has to offer, so “exploiting our rivalry” pretty much means “seeing how much the Rangers are willing to give up”.  

  3. Phillies_Aces35 3 years ago

    I don’t think his contract is that unreasonable. I mean, obviously we’d have to eat some money but I don’t see it as untradeable. (other than his 10-5 rights).

    • I don’t get the contract comment either.  Fangraphs has J-Roll at 2.5 WAR already through 87 games, putting him on pace to top 4 WAR for the season.  He had a poor April, but since May 1 he’s hitting .269/.326/.458 with 8 HR, 28 RBI, and 10 SB.  He’s still one of the better shortstops in the game and a bargain at $11M/year.

      He’s not going anywhere, though, due to the 10-and-5 rights.

    • melonis_rex 3 years ago

      I don’t think the Phillies would have to eat any money, honestly. Unless it was as an attempt to get better players in return.

      His bat isn’t awesome, but for a shortstop, its a huge improvement over what lots of teams are getting. And his defense is still well above average.

      • notsureifsrs 3 years ago

        the cubs are taking the right approach in offering to pay for the players they trade away. you might not have to pay rollins salary, but if it makes a significant difference in the return you definitely should

  4. BeatEmBucs 3 years ago

    Well, Marte sucks. There goes that. Thanks for the downer, Ken.

    Seriously, though. That is the first time I have EVER read that Marte’s defense in center was anything less than great. Caught stealing too much? Fine. K’s a little too much? Fine.

    Not enough power for left? His power numbers have gotten better every year in the minors and he’s slugging .490 as of today. Regardless, McCutchen puts up FAR better power numbers than a typical profile for a CF, he just happens to play there. His bat would offset any less than normal power production from a corner. The Pirates, if they hold on to him, need Marte to be a table setter and any power he could provide would be an added bonus. He’ll need to get his walk rate up, but he’s plenty capable of hitting for average.

    Seems to me like somebody is trying to downplay him either if the team they work for is targeting him in a trade, or working against the Pirates for a deal involving a player both teams are pursuing.

    • DempseyK 3 years ago

       Ken Rosenthal is not a baseball scout, nor is he a prospect guru.  And Im sure whichever executives he is speaking to in regards to Marte is simply posturing.  MANY MANY MANY baseball people think the kid is a stud.  He is  5 tool player no doubt.  He is an outstanding defender, but still lacks plate discipline.  But for his age, he is significantly more advanced than most.  The kid is MLB ready for sure.  When you swing at a lot of strikes, you strike out more, but you also get more hits.  This produces a low walk rate also.  But when you have the talent he does, Id prefer him swing at pitches he likes rather than be passive.  I will happily accept a low walk rate, an increased strikeout rate, and a “work in progress” in plate discipline in exchange for a .300 average , 15-25 homeruns, 75+ RBI, 100+ Runs, and 30+ Stolen Bases with ++ Defense.

      As a matter of fact, anyone that wouldnt take that trade off isnt too bright in my opinion.  Even if he performs at 75% that capacity, he will still be slightly above league average.  My point is, that there is a reason that this kid has shot up through the system and has caught the eye of everyone in baseball.  He is quite possibly a 2nd Andrew McCutchen type player in the making. (with less plate discipline)  But all the tools are there.

    • Mike Adamson 3 years ago

      The National media hates Pittsburgh and always will!!! If they could lower Marte’s value at all then they will. These guys are all bum buddy’s with certain teamsGM’s/sources. It’s all BS.

      Marte is exactly what Pittsburgh needs. Why trade him? He hits for Average, has good speed, Better fielder than Cutch, and has some pop. This guy was killing ML pitching in Spring. Please give him a chance here in Pittsburgh.

    • This “scout” likely saw 1 game where Marte got a late jump or something.  I agree, this is the 1st time I’ve ever heard anyone complain about his D.  Watched him in WV, Altoona, and at Indy, his D is legit.  Legit enough to push ACutch to a corner OF.  I also agree that he has two paths, either a 2nd ACutch, or an ACutch Lite. 
      The only two things that need improvement:  his SB% (which was never an issue until this year) and his K%.  Overall his stats are neck and neck with where McCutchen was at in each level.
      IMO, I’m over Upton.  Move on to an OF that will cost less and use some resources on a 2nd bat or a SP. 
      Get after CQ, Willingham, Span, Wandy, Lowrie, Clint Robinson, CJ Cron, Victorino, etc.   

    •  Just a quick look, but despite Marte’s issues w/ “plate discipline,” he’s never had an OBP under .300 (his lowest was .307, in his first season).  He’s been around .360 most of the way; with growing power numbers every season.  There’s absolutely nobody blocking him in Pittsburgh right now – I can’t figure out why he’s not in the starting line-up currently, unless only to protect his trade value in the event he doesn’t come up and hit immediately.  In the end; he’s not one of Huntington’s additions, so maybe he’ll never put on a Pirates uniform.

  5. I think Dempster will go anywhere to win. Its just 2 months for him.

  6. ARod's Ring 3 years ago

    I think Dempster is due to a sudden and ugly regression (ala Jarrod Washburm 2009)

  7. nm344 3 years ago

    Rollins has the 4th highest WAR for a shortstop this season.  And he’s on pace for a 4.5 WAR season.  People who think he has a bad contract are crazy.  And the Phillies are not moving him anyway, there is noone there to replace him.

    • melonis_rex 3 years ago

      yeah, the only reason the Phillies would move Rollins would be to clear up luxury tax space for Hamels.

      If its moving Rollins in order to sign a truly elite player like Hamels, it makes sense. Besides that, it doesn’t.

  8. TheReturnOfMrBlanks 3 years ago

    Marte = Next Wil Veneble – With that said I would gladly trade Veneble straight up for Marte just to try all over again =)

    • indybucfan 3 years ago

      Considering you’ve probably never seen him play, that’s like grasping for straws in the dark. He’s nothing like Venable.

  9. Yeah, we feel the same way about Haren healing himself. I mean, realistically we’ve made it this way with Wilson + Weaver and Williams and a few other guys who pull out victories thanks to an explosive offense. Regardless, giving up Cron/Segura/Bourjous/and probably even Santana would be absolutely retarded for a rental. I’m  very old school baseball, very anti arte moreno. We had fun with Teix, let the other two go somewhere else. (though the trade with teix did give us the ability to sign mike trout 24th, so… thank you…reagins???)

  10. sallen22 3 years ago

    I actually think Texas will need a starter, especially in the playoffs. They’ve got Darvish, Oswalt, Harrison, Holland and Lewis.  But Ogando is returning to the bullpen and there’s real doubt as to whether or not Feliz will come back as a starter or even be able to stay in the rotation.  There aren’t any elite pitchers, just a whole mess of #3 and #4 starters.  This works extremely well in the regular season.  

    But when it comes time for the playoffs and the Rangers end up facing a Sabathia-Kuroda, Weaver-Wilson/Haren, Verlander-Fister or Sale-Peavy, they’ll need something to respond with.  Darvish isn’t in this category yet.  Oswalt isn’t anymore.  Harrison might be, but there’s certainly reason to believe that any decent offense in the playoffs would slap him around.  

    Long term, there’s no reason to believe the Rangers need pitching.  They have tons of depth and a great staff on hand to guide them.  But short term, specifically if they’re looking at winning a World Series one of these days, this is a team that needs a front line starter like Grienke or Hamels. 

  11. sdsuphilip 3 years ago

    Then you won’t get grienke, while it maynot take a top 10 prospect like a profar it will take more than players whose ceilings are number 3 starters and average regulars.

  12. HairScissors 3 years ago

     We’re talking about J-Roll…….

  13. Ben_Cherington 3 years ago

    “Many executives believe the return for a pitcher like Greinke or Hamels will be surprisingly low because the new collective bargaining agreement prevents teams from obtaining compensation for players acquired midseason”

    You still think someone is going to give up their “top 3 prospects”?

    I am of the opinion the extra wild card will have more teams in contention but it will not increase or make GM’s overpay for rentals.  Teams are starting to put a very high value on prospects and do not want to part with them.

  14. GriffeyandSizemore 3 years ago

    Seems legit.

  15. Jbink2585 3 years ago

    marlins are sunk

  16. corey23 3 years ago

    Other than the stadium issue, I’d have to disagree on the a’s… and the Padres are loaded with talent and about to have a new owner.

  17. Not a bad list, but have to disagree on a few.

    First of all you have 14 risers, 7 treaders, and 9 sinkers.  I could agree with there being more risers than sinkers since baseball front offices seem to be getting smarter, but I don’t think almost half of baseball is on the upswing.

    Cubs are treading water, which is up from where they were last season.  They could be rising in value depending on what they get back from the Garza/Dempster trades; but not before that.

    Giants are treading water as well.  They need Lincecum to be Lincecum and their window is beginning to close.

    Cardinals are rising (sorry, Cubs fans).  Loss of Pujols hurts, but still a solid, solid farm system with a well-balanced team, age-wise.

    Astros are treading.  They have a number of quality young players and prospects and appear to be undertaking a proper rebuild.

    Indians are also treading.  They are next year’s White Sox.

    I could quibble about the Reds (potentially rising), D-Backs (ditto), Marlins (borderline falling), Mariners and A’s, but those five are all borderline enough not to be a big issue.

  18. The Cardinals are most definitely rising.

  19. Phillies_Aces35 3 years ago

    For a West Coast team he would.

  20. ARod's Ring 3 years ago

    Haha… good one.

  21. Olt can move, he’s blocked by Beltre who is still playing great and does not have the upside that Profar has

  22. WolandJR 3 years ago

    That is an understatement.

  23. He’s still expendable, upside is not the same as it is with Profar, though if he gets traded I think it will be in a deal to acquire Justin Upton

  24. Cubtalk you need to watch some baseball not on ESPN.  The A’s are 3 games above .500 and have a new starting staff with one of the best ERA in baseball.  They are playing 9 rookies and still winning.  No soon to be free agents and 1 of the best pitching prospects in AAA.  This with 2 starters on the DL all season.  The future is bright for the A’s.  The cubs are not even close to being as good as the A’s.

  25. Ben_Cherington 3 years ago

    top 3 prospects though like you said yesterday?  For a number 3 starter????

  26.  Olt is striking out too much in AA, more than 1 in 4 at bats.In the MLB he would be like Mark Reynolds.

  27. TTT OOO 3 years ago

    Sox have nothing of value to trade and Yanks will go after someone with AL experience.
    Dempster stays in the NL, but where is the question.

  28. sdsuphilip 3 years ago

    There aren’t many A+ prospects in baseball, probably only 2 (profar and Bundy), Wheeler was an A- prospect when traded, that being said hamels> beltran

  29. ugen64 3 years ago

    I really doubt the Phillies would ask for A+ prospects, if they had any intention of trading Hamels at all. Even before the new CBA, the most any team gave up for a rental was maybe a B/B+ prospect (with other players):

    Sabathia: Matt LaPorta (#23 prospect in MLB)
    Beltran: Zack Wheeler (#55 prospect in MLB)
    Teixeira: Steve Marek (Angels’ #6 prospect)
    Cliff Lee: Justin Smoak (#13 prospect in MLB)

    (I only listed the ranked prospects; obviously most of these deals had some other filler prospects). The only real haul that any rental player has gotten in recent years was the Halladay trade, but he’s a much more valuable player than Hamels, and also the Phillies were getting him for a full season, not just 2-3 months.

    I think the days of extremely lopsided rental trades (eg. the Bartolo Colon to Montreal deal) are over, especially with the new CBA. I’m not saying the Phillies will trade Hamels for peanuts; just saying that if they expect a top 5 or top 10 prospect for him, he isn’t going anywhere.

  30. sdsuphilip 3 years ago

    It’s a well below average one compared to other playoff teams

  31. sallen22 3 years ago

    If you believe Colby Lewis and Matt Harrison are two aces that matchup well with the Angels, Rays, Yanks, Tigers and White Sox, then figuratively, I’ve got some real estate down in Florida you’d really be interested in.  I’ve also got some .com stocks and Enron investments that look really promising. 

  32. gnats 3 years ago

    True, except he’s also drawing walks a fantastic rate.  That is very valuable.

  33. You forget that the Rangers rotation made it to back to back Series appearances with the only “top” addition being Lee in the 2010. Last year’s rotation look similar to this year’s and the Rangers came within one out of winning it all.

  34. That “well below average one” beat the Yankees, the Rays, and the Tigers.

  35. sallen22 3 years ago

    He is right, that 1-2 punch doesn’t match up well with the others regardless of playoff history.  Trying to sell folks on Lewis being an ace is like trying to say MArk Reynolds is a legitimate middle of the order bat.  Sometimes it just doesn’t line up that way.  

    Again, this isn’t to bash the Rangers.  They have tons of pitching depth but simply put, their top end pitching does not match up favorably well with the Angels, Yankees, White Sox, Tigers or Rays.  A guy like Cole Hamels would certainly change that.  In the playoffs, it really all comes down to pitching and timely hits.  I’m confident the Rangers can get those timely hits.  But I seriously doubt Texas’ ability to out pitch their opponents in a short series.

  36. Shikikazu 3 years ago

     Rangers hopefully get taken out by Detroit/White Sox in ALDS and their prospects don’t pan out then they’ll wish they sold high at this time.

  37. Andrew Cartwright 3 years ago

     What?  So Colby Lewis and Matt Harrison are “high-end #2’s” but Garza is a #3.  Haha.

  38. I don’t even consider Greinke an ace at this point. One great season doesn’t garner that title.

  39. What’s funny is that Harrison has been better than Garza (not by a little, by a lot) the past 2 seasons.

  40. Lewis and Holland were great during the postseason. The Rangers didn’t bring back the dead weight that lost them multiple playoff games, CJ, and the “new blood” came from Japan.
    I would like to add Hamels to the rotation, but at the same time if Texas is talking Mike Olt it should be with Arizona.

  41. Robb Logan 3 years ago

    I am an Angels fan. That said the A’s and M’s (who have a deep and good farm system right now) are both teams on the upswing. As are the Astros who are also young for the most part. Those 3 teams can combine in the next few years to give many headaches to ranger and Angel fans. The west is far from won with the potential of the A’s, M’s and coming in Stros to throw a wrench to any best laid plans. Just ask the rangers and Yu Darvish about the M’s .

  42. notsureifsrs 3 years ago

    explanation: CubsTalk

  43.  Whoever gave Heath Bell so much rope has something to do with at least four losses.  I only have myself to blame in my fantasy league.

  44. The problem for the A’s is that the rangers have a good farm system so I don’t see them slowing down unless there is some pitching injuries.  The angels are in a tough spot some good young players but a few old down hill players but money is not a problem for them buying new talent.

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