Quick Hits: Berkman, Nationals, Royals, Pagan

The Orioles drew first blood in their big four-game series with the Yankees, slugging six homers en route to a 10-6 victory.  Mark Reynolds hit two home runs, and has now enjoyed three multi-homer games against New York within the span of a week.  Baltimore is now tied with the Yankees atop the AL East.

Here's some news from around baseball…

  • If Lance Berkman retires, he tells Mark Berman of FOX 26 Sports Houston that he intends to finish his degree at Rice and be an assistant coach for the school's baseball team.  Berkman said he is still leaning towards retirement but is focused on the Cardinals right now and will save a final decision under the offseason.
  • Between Bryce Harper's play in center field and new leadoff hitter Jayson Werth's performance (a 1.014 OPS in 14 games as the leadoff man entering tonight's action), Amanda Comak of the Washington Times wonders if the Nationals may not need to focus on these long-time problems areas this offseason. 
  • The Royals should re-sign Jeremy Guthrie to a two-year, $15MM contract and non-tender Luke Hochevar, opines Rany Jazayerli of Rany On The Royals.  Jazayerli believes Guthrie would pitch well in the AL Central while Hochevar hasn't been able to translate his decent advanced metrics into on-the-field success.
  • Fangraphs' Dave Cameron cites Angel Pagan as "the most underrated player in baseball."  Pagan has a .284/.336/.430 line with eight homers, 78 runs scored and 23 steals for the Giants this season.  He is also a free agent this winter, and compares well with bigger-name free agent center fielders like Michael Bourn or B.J. Upton.
  • Players and owners aren't close to a decision about limiting September roster sizes, reports Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.  We heard earlier this week that MLB was looking to change the rules for next season, but Rosenthal reports that since different teams deal with the September rosters in different ways, some clubs aren't willing to commit to the players' demands for minimum number of active roster spots for each game.


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35 Comments on "Quick Hits: Berkman, Nationals, Royals, Pagan"


D.j. Wilson
2 years 11 months ago

When I saw “most underrated player in baseball” and then saw it was not a player from the A’s roster, I stopped reading.

NickinIthaca
2 years 11 months ago

You’re confusing the word “player” with the word “team”…

rainyperez
2 years 11 months ago

Jeez calm down. Ask yourself this.

Which gets more headlines? The A’s team/players or Angel Pagan.

birdsonthebat
2 years 11 months ago

The A’s and it’s not even close. What kind of question is that??

rainyperez
2 years 11 months ago

Exactly why I asked him that question. The average fan does not know Pagan which is why he is an underrated player. Just because you’re an A’s fan doesn’t mean you have to be ignorant of other good players in the league.

MetsMagic
2 years 11 months ago

Would be a real shame to see Berkman retire, but it would be an even bigger shame to see him hobble around first base when he himself knows he doesn’t have it anymore.

Angel Pagan is the most underrated player in baseball? I think he gets enough attention for what he is, which is essentially a poor man’s Alex Rios (from his Toronto days). I liked him with the Mets, I’d like to see a return but I doubt it.

Harper’s emergence solves the Nationals eternal centerfield issue, I think. He’s so fast out there that he can patrol CF until he fills out completely, and he’s so young that this could take a while,

Blue387
2 years 11 months ago

Pagan put up a 5 WAR season in 2010.

MetsMagic
2 years 11 months ago

So did plenty of other players that aren’t going to again. He’s a good player but I don’t think he’s missing too much recognition.

2 years 11 months ago

He’s a solid player never understood why Alderson traded him but he’s not going to get Bourn or Upton money this offseason that’s for sure.

NickinIthaca
2 years 11 months ago

Have Bourn or Upton gotten Bourn or Upton money yet?

LongTimeFan1
2 years 11 months ago

Because he’s inconsistent, mistake and injury-prone, played horrid defense in 2011 and his arbitration salary level was too high for his shortcomings.

rainyperez
2 years 11 months ago

I think he deserves recognition at least for being a player that has essentially sparked the Giants offense after Cabrera suspension.

He’s made some amazing catches this season but his routes and jumps to baseballs in the air are somewhat questionable.

start_wearing_purple
start_wearing_purple
2 years 11 months ago

I admire Berkman’s goals, but how many players who have been around for years actually gone back to school to finish their degrees? Especially the ones who made over $100M in their careers?

Serious question.

rainyperez
2 years 11 months ago

I’m sure there are more than you think and have not gone public with it. Most of the time I read about professional athletes going back to school it’s because they promised someone they would.

Crucisnh
2 years 11 months ago

Purple, Jim Lonborg went on to become a dentist after leaving baseball, so I assume that he went back and got his degree(s).

start_wearing_purple
start_wearing_purple
2 years 11 months ago

True, but that was in the era before massive salaries.

GrouchyBear
2 years 11 months ago

Joe Morgan

Red_Line_9
2 years 11 months ago

If a person has a chance earn a degree from Rice…they should take the opportunity.

Joe Valenti
2 years 11 months ago

A team like the Red Sox can quietly reclaim their offense with the likes of Pagan and Swisher this offseason (playing LF and 1B respectively). It may not solve their pitching problems but it’s a cheap way to make them competitive considering there aren’t many cost effective pitching options in free agency and they got a couple of decent young arms from the Dodgers

Crucisnh
2 years 11 months ago

There’s going to be nothing “cheap” about Swisher as a FA. As for Pagan, I’m not impressed. A .284 AVG and a .336 OBP are nothing to write home about, and certainly a waste of space as a Fenway LF-er. For those stats, I’d rather see the Sox just have some rookie play.

NickinIthaca
2 years 11 months ago

I was watching MLB Network last night, and Harold Reynolds (and to a lesser degree John Smoltz) had a great idea regarding the roster expansion. They suggested expanding rosters in April, and shrinking it down from May through the end of the season. From what they said, it would allow players to ease back into the daily abuse of the game, and would make it more meaningful down the stretch…

mlbscout6
2 years 11 months ago

God I miss listening to Reynolds on Baseball Tonight….those were the days.

rainyperez
2 years 11 months ago

He’s good sometimes. At times he’s rational and other times he says stuff that makes you scratch your head. Best example is this.

On MLB Network Reynolds was arguing the fact the Phillies still had a chance at Wild Card a month ago. The host told him they were pretty far off with many teams in front of the Phillies.

Reynolds goes on a 3 minute rant and gives legit reasons on why they will get Wild Card.

As soon as he’s done the host and whoever was next to Reynolds just stares at him befuddled. The host again reminds him that they are far off. Reynolds then asks how many games the Phillies were out.

Host says, “12.5 games.”

Reynolds with a surprise look says, “Uh…Yeah they’re not going to make the playoffs.”

The host and whoever was co hosting bust out laughing with myself included.

2 years 11 months ago

Ha lol I remember that hahaha

rainyperez
2 years 11 months ago

Great thing about it was the pause after Reynolds was told and then laughing.

There are a lot of awkward moments on MLB Network I enjoy but they are much better than BBTN. They focus on all the teams even if some analysts like Reynolds still hold on to their ESPN ways of thinking.

johnsilver
2 years 11 months ago

It’s still better listening to Reynolds take off on something like the Phillies having a chance and other far off things like he does than when Joe Morgan was on ESPN monday night baseball and always ranting about how every single one of his teamates on the big dead machine were the best at whatever position they played in the game like he always did.

Best thing ESPN ever did was unload Joe Morgan, only about 5 years too late.

2 years 11 months ago

On September roster expansions, what should be considered is: You can call up as many players as you want (as long as the player is on the 40-man roster), but you can only have 25 active players on the game roster…and any pitcher who starts a game and is then removed from the roster cannot be re-activated for 10 days barring injury.

The thinking that the NHL roster doesn’t expand when playoffs, but you can call up as many players as you want (provided that they are on the 50-contract roster there) once the minor league affiliate has been eliminated from contention, is my basis here.

moondog45
2 years 11 months ago

On the roster in September I propose you can call up as many players as you want but can only use 28. One must be a catcher. It gives you a couple of extra moves. No more multiple pitching moves in the same inning

Bob Cannell
2 years 11 months ago

Berkman still has it, but is missing his knees.

Just_Da_damaja
2 years 11 months ago

even with some of his miscues, Angel Pagan right now would be the mets best outfielder

Sandy Alderson is just running out the clock til its time to go back to real work as next in line

LongTimeFan1
2 years 11 months ago

Angel Pagan isn’t anywhere near as good as Fangraph claims – a testament to how misleading some of the newer numbers can be. I say as Met fan who rooted hard for him, including after regression in all aspects but steals, following a good 2010.

In 2011, he was major disappointment on both sides of the ball, which prompted trading him. And this is what he’s been since his days in the minors, inconsistent from year to year, looking like he turned a corner, only to regress a number of seasons in his career. Injuries have been a problem, and the nagging ones were in 2011, including intestinal issues, so that may have impacted performance, but to say he’s on par with Michael Borne and B.J. Upton, is major leap.

Until Pagan shows consistency from year to year on both sides of the ball, and on the bases – not just steals – I remain unconvinced he’s anything more than a mistake-prone, injury-prone, average player, and readily replaceable, overall. He’s a 5 mil a year player, not a 7-10 mil of a Bourn or B.J. Upton. Upton hits for power, has fabulous speed and plays very good D, and Bourn is Gold Glover, an impact CF, and league leader stolen base threat with better numbers than Pagan and several years younger. Pagan is not a player who evokes fear in the opposition.

Just_Da_damaja
2 years 11 months ago

Pagan has always hit well in the clutch..

if his mistakes happened in KC…ur outlook on him might be a bit different…

if Bourn or Upton played in NYC…u met fans would’ve ran them out of town eons ago..hell yall treated Carlos Beltran as if he were hitting like Jason Bay for almost the duration of his stay in NY

randyfastman
2 years 11 months ago

I kinda like Pagan for the Phillies CF job next year if they can get him at like 2-3 yrs at 5-7 mil per. basically the same player as Victorino for half the price…. plus leaves them money to fill other spots (3b, LF, bullpen) through FA or trade

bobbybaseball
2 years 11 months ago

Really Amanda – 14 games and that has you thinking that the leadoff spot may be solved? I’ve heard of small sample size, but this is taking it a bit too far.

SFrush90
2 years 11 months ago

Umm…ok.