Olney On Dempster, Athletics, Lee, Castro

At least one baseball person wonders if Ryan Dempster hurt his free agent stock by agreeing to join the Rangers, ESPN.com’s Buster Olney reports. The American League, referred to by one general manager as "the big boy league," features some high-powered offenses that could have impact Dempster’s numbers and diminish his leverage in offseason contract talks. Here are more notes from Olney…

  • The Dodgers were interested in Dempster, but they never pushed for him, Olney reports. The Dodgers didn’t want to trade from their core of good prospects and they didn’t waver when the Cubs asked about their top minor leaguers.
  • Olney suggests teams like the Red Sox and Orioles could have interest in Brandon McCarthy if the Athletics place him on waivers when he returns from the disabled list.
  • Before the trade deadline, the Phillies made it clear that they would not pick up any of Cliff Lee’s salary in a trade and would also want prospects in return for the left-hander. Olney suggests it’s highly unlikely Lee will be moved in a waiver deal this month.
  • Starlin Castro’s name came up in conversations between the Cubs and Diamondbacks leading up to the trade deadline, Olney writes. However, both sides moved on quickly and a deal was never close.
  • Olney wonders if the Nationals could pursue in Derek Lowe given their interest in adding pitching leading up to the trade deadline.

57 Responses to Olney On Dempster, Athletics, Lee, Castro Leave a Reply

  1. dieharddodgerfan 3 years ago

    I guess if the Rangers were the “Big Boys” of the “Big Boy League” the last 2 years, then the must have won the World Series.

    Oh wait…

    • Corey Italiano 3 years ago

      Besides the fact that the playoffs are virtually a crapshoot, one team from the NL beating another team from the AL in the World Series doesn’t make the AL any more or less the “big boy league”. Small sample size and all that.

      • AaronAngst 3 years ago

        Yeah, they’re totally a crapshoot – in fact, I don’t even know why they have the playoffs, or the World Series. They should just crown the team with the most wins at the end of the year as champion, and leave it at that.

        With such a small sample size, how are we to judge who the best team is?

        • CowboyJames 3 years ago

          Well because of money. But my question is this: Why does the “best” team have to win the championship? Why cant we just let the champion be the “champion”?

      • dieharddodgerfan 3 years ago

        Yeah, I mean if a team beats another team in a best of 7 series, that’s not enough.

        We should just buy into the fact that the AL is better and crown the AL team the Champion, right?


        • AaronAngst 3 years ago

          The AL is sooooo good. I’ve been told this repeatedly by the media, and by other posters here. So I have no choice but to believe that, despite both leagues pulling talent from the exact same talent pool, the AL’s teams do a much better job, and as a whole are just plain better. And don’t get me started on the AL East! Man, that division is the best! And it has absolutely zero to do with the fact that two of the teams’ combined payroll exceeds the annual GDP of most nations. They’re just more talented, and better and stuff.

          • dieharddodgerfan 3 years ago

            Yeah and the AL East’s offensive prowess has nothing to do with the fact that most of the teams play in band boxes. That wouldn’t help their offenses at all.

  2. WNYMetsfan03 3 years ago

    Big Boy League must refer to all his stops at Bob’s Big Boy on the way to the games

  3. Cub Fan Bob 3 years ago

    And the Cub’s didnt “waver” in giving away something for free

    • Cosmo3 3 years ago

      For free? Look again–they got two prospects with good upside for a two-month rental.

      • He said they DIDN’T waiver, meaning they didn’t just give in and give away something for free.

        • Cub Fan Bob 3 years ago

          Yep, you keep hearing this press on how the Dodgers were not going to give away a double A pitcher here or there “not wavering” as if they stuck to their guns but the truth is the Cub’s were handcuffed by the situation which the Dodgers knew and likewise attempted to take advantage of. If anything the Cubs should get props for asking for a fair return and when push came to shove wasnt pressured into giving away a resource for nothing.

          • Cosmo3 3 years ago

            Yep, I read that wrong. Sorry about that, thought it was sarcasm. I’ve changed my dislike to a like

    • melonis_rex 3 years ago

      they got more than the value of the supplemental draft pick for dempster.

  4. Cosmo3 3 years ago

    Yes, that “big boy league” is in the middle of a torrid stretch of dominance–losing the last three ASG and three of the last four WS–I wish they’d quit beating up on their “baby brother league”…

    • Karkat 3 years ago

      “Your team lost three of their last four games! They must be the worst team!!”

      • Cosmo3 3 years ago

        Series. It’s called the “World Series”, and each one is comprised of seven (7) games.

        • Karkat 3 years ago

          Is THAT how this ‘World Series’ works? I should watch one sometime!!

          I was drawing an analogue to a single season to demonstrate the faulty nature of your implication, based on its small sample size.

        • MB923 3 years ago

          Thanks Tim McCarver

    • Devern Hansack 3 years ago

      The ASG is not a good metric for evaluating the strengths of leagues, while the playoffs are essentially a crap shoot.

      • laffingrass 3 years ago

        Then we could turn to interleague play, where the AL has had a winning record the past 9 seasons.

        Although the matchups aren’t as even as a generic regular season, this is a significantly larger sample size (~250 games), and the best we have to draw from.

        I look forward to the coming seasons with more interleague play throughout the year, even being a fan of NL baseball. Should make things much more interesting.

    • MB923 3 years ago

      The All Star Game is 1 game and the World Series is a series between 2 teams that can go as little as 4 and as much as 7 of course. So you’re talking about anywhere from 5 to 8 games, and only about 1/7th of Major League Baseball players (60+ All star players combined with around the 50 players in the World Series, some of course already were being All Stars, so say about 100-115 players)

      The AL has won Interleague play (which consists of 252 games, every single MLB team, and every single MLB player) every year since 2004.

      • Karkat 3 years ago

        See now THIS is a good number.

        This is also a much better way to determine who should get home field advantage than the All-Star Game, imo.

      • Steven Chuob 3 years ago

        2011: AL 131, NL 121
        2010: AL 134, NL 118
        2009: AL 138, NL 114
        2008: AL 149, NL 103
        2007: AL 137, NL 115
        2006: AL 154, NL 98
        2005: AL 136, NL 116
        2004: AL 127, NL 125

        Here are the numbers – maybe that is why the AL is consider the big boy league, much bigger sample size then 3 years of AS/World Series games.

        • MB923 3 years ago

          Exactly right, that’s my point.

          Holy crap at the 2006 and 2008 numbers. But the Cards and Phillies won the WS those years, so therefore NL > AL those years I guess by the logic of someone like @Cosmo3:disqus

        • dieharddodgerfan 3 years ago

          The big issue being left out is that NL teams are inherently constructed differently than AL teams.

          NL teams don’t have the extra big bat on their roster that is slotted in as the DH on AL teams. So when NL teams have to go to the DH, they usually are at a disadvantage.

          Conversely, NL teams gain no advantage when pitchers have to hit because both teams usually have poor hitters in the pitcher’s spot.

          The DH is a big advantage for AL teams in interleague series.

        • Jeffy25 3 years ago

          Take the Astros out of the NL and hand them to the AL for the last three years and you have almost even records.

      • Greg Shriver 3 years ago

        I guess we should all bow and concede everything to the AL then. What’s the point of the poor NL even trying to compete?

        • MB923 3 years ago

          I’m stating facts. Head to head, the AL has beaten the NL in interleague for 9 straight years.

    • Paul Shailor 3 years ago

      Yea I dont understand the big boy league comment, I guess he could have meant there are more teams in the middle of the pack that are dangerous, whereas the nl tends to be more top heavy. Also the AL does put up more runs, but that also has to do with the DH and ballparks.

      • Wouldn’t that be exactly what he is talking about? He is talking about a pitcher, scoring more runs because of the DH and ballparks would directly effect the pitcher.

        • Paul Shailor 3 years ago

          Well the thing is he didnt specify, he could have said more offensive league, but the big boy comment IMO encompasses for more than just offense.

          • Hmm….

            The American League, referred to by one general manager as “the big boy league,” features some HIGH-POWERED OFFENSES that could have impact Dempster’s numbers and diminish his leverage in offseason contract talks.

          • laffingrass 3 years ago

            The GM didn’t make that high-powered offense comment, the author of this article added that in themselves.

        • melonis_rex 3 years ago

          there really aren’t significantly more hitter friendly ballparks in the AL than the NL.

          you have yankee stadium, arlington, the cell, camden yards, and maybe fenway, but you also have target field, the coliseum, safeco, and tropicana field, all of which favor pitchers and its not close. and nl hitters get coors, chase, wrigley, gabp, minute maid park, etc. and the obvious spattering of pitchers’ parks like petco and att.

          there are hitters who were worse in the AL than the NL, and there are pitchers who were worse in the NL than they were in the AL.

    • Jwick22 3 years ago

      Maybe they were talking in terms of payroll since four the top 5 highest are in the a.l.

  5. Natsfan89 3 years ago

    The Nationals already have a washed up sinkerballer they can throw out to get shelled. Why would they be interested in adding another?

    • rundmc1981 3 years ago

      As a Braves fan, I’m praying they add Lowe. As long as he took the ball from John Lannan.

  6. ChrisV 3 years ago

    On paper, the AL can be regarded as the “Big boy league”. In the last year, more big name talent has moved to the AL than vice versa. Fielder, Pujols, Greinke just to name a few. On paper the AL wins, but that is only on paper not on the field. Baseball is a crazy game. The teams/league with the best players don’t always win.

    • Steven Chuob 3 years ago

      On stats here how much the AL wins over the NL in interleague plays since 2004.
      2011: AL 131, NL 121
      2010: AL 134, NL 118
      2009: AL 138, NL 114
      2008: AL 149, NL 103
      2007: AL 137, NL 115
      2006: AL 154, NL 98
      2005: AL 136, NL 116
      2004: AL 127, NL 125

      • Jwick22 3 years ago

        The american league is getting the astros. Thats a 20 game swing there

  7. baseball52 3 years ago

    Please, not this again. Not the Starlin Castro trade buzz.

    • JakeD 3 years ago

      I know, he IS the future of this club!

      • JustFatOlMe 3 years ago

        I would be severely disappointed if they traded Castro.But I’d be red-faced pissed if thet were to trade Barney.He’s gonna be a great one someday.

        • JakeD 3 years ago

          What!?!? Barney’s potential is in no way, shape, or form higher than Castro’s. I would have loved to see a Garza and Barney for Turner trade, but unfortunately that never happened. Barney’s defense is spectacular, but his hitting can only accomplish so much.

    • CubsManiac 3 years ago

      I agree with you, but I think if the Cubs were blown away with an offer, they might have considered it given that we aren’t going to be competing anytime soon, our #1 prospect is SS Javier Baez and Castro stands to make a ton of money starting this offseason.

  8. Gothapotamus 3 years ago

    While many take pot shots at NL pitchers for playing in a softer offensive league, why is it that I seldom if ever hear people be critical of an AL offensive player? They obviously have an easier environment to produce in, plugging in another hitter (usually one with power), providing considerable protection to those who bat before him and additional opportunities to those who bat after him.

    • melonis_rex 3 years ago

      because that’s not necessarily true, and outside of counting pseudo-stats like RBIs and runs, lineup protection is generally a myth.

      Every AL pitcher has to face the DH, and every NL pitcher gets to face a pitcher. Not every AL offensive player gets to hit in a favorable offensive environment.

      • Gothapotamus 3 years ago

        gotta disagree with you on this one. in a vacuum, if you could take out the impact of a guy like david ortiz, the production (HRs, OPS) of those batting around him would go down.

        granted, not every team has a david ortiz at DH, but there is some impact for all AL teams.

      • Iconoclast17 3 years ago

        There’s a reason Brandon Inge with his 12 HR’s 48 RBI in 1/2 a season is in the majors while SABR OBP guys like Barton languish at AAA year after year, Rex. I can halfway agree on “runs” but RBI and clutch hitting are more important than walk-trolling.

  9. 1980CHAMPS 3 years ago

    You know it wasn’t a general manager that made that big boy comment, it was Olney himself. He is a big homer (no pun intended) for the Junior Circuit. Like what Paul Shailor just said about the big difference is the DH and parks. The parks actually make a bigger difference in my mind. Look at most of the Oakland starters that move to the NL, their numbers tend to decline in the Senior Circuit. The AL East has 4 hitters parks where as the NL East only has one.

  10. TS Bridges 3 years ago

    Ah, of course, the AL is the Big Boy League…except for the DH…there’s that thing…oh and the smaller ballparks…there’s that…oh, yeah, and they seem to keep losing All-Star Games and World Series…that thing, you know, that’s something…oh, and they use their money to keep buying the overpaid Big Boys, and then place so much pressure on them that they flounder…OK, so what is so BIG about the AL?…I’m confused. Maybe they will go to a 4-player lineup so the same 4 people come to bat over and over again and then move the fences to the edge of the infield…that would be bigger, eh?…stop PED testing, that could be something the AL could do…you know, bigger, right?…
    There is that possibility that the media turds, who make such Big Boy claims, and live in their big houses in gated communities in Connecticut halfway between the Red Sox and Yankees, don’t want to come to grips with the fact that most people don’t care about their Little League style of baseball. Call me when they get rid of the DH and their short outfields, and I will start caring again.

  11. Gothapotamus 3 years ago

    I think most people forget why the DH was implemented in the AL. As a league, their offense was so terrible that they needed to inject an artificial means for offense to help attendance.

  12. Jeffy25 3 years ago

    No, it was an attendance gimmick.

  13. Gothapotamus 3 years ago

    Then I guess Ken Burns’ Baseball must be wrong …

  14. Jeffy25 3 years ago

    Pretty sure they say it on there too.

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