Quick Hits: Braves, Leyland, Soriano, Phillies, Rays

Depending on what happens with Michael Bourn, the Braves could potentially have two major holes to fill in their lineup.  Jim Bowden of ESPN.com (Insider sub. req'd) offers some suggestions for replacing Bourn and Chipper Jones and notes that the club could have some added flexibility if Martin Prado can be shifted from left field to third base.  Ben Revere of the Twins, Peter Bourjos of the Angels, and Chris Young of the Diamondbacks could all be trade targets in center field.  There aren't a lot of great third base options on the open market but Atlanta could zero in on guys like Mike Olt of the Rangers, Chase Headley of the Padres, and maybe even the Mets David Wright.  Here's more from around baseball..

  • Tigers manager Jim Leyland has been telling people in recent days that he has no plans to retire, according to Danny Knobler of CBSSports.com.  Given his desire to return, it's likely that Leyland will be managing the Tigers in 2013.  Leyland's contract expires at the end of the season.
  • Even though he has been linked the Marlins opening, Mike Lowell tells Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com that he has no interest in managing at this point in his life.  The former third baseman is currently working for the MLB Network as an on-air analyst.
  • The Yankees' desire to keep their payroll under $189MM in 2014 could complicate their chances to sign Rafael Soriano to a long-term deal once he opts out, writes Heyman.  Soriano's three-year, $35MM deal seemed like a stretch last year but it now seems like the Bombers view the possibility of a last year at $14MM more favorably than the right-hander.
  • The members of the Philadelphia Daily News staff bring us their suggestions for retooling the club heading into 2013.  David Murphy believes that Ruben Amaro & Co. should start by revamping the bullpen while Marcus Hayes writes that the club should stick to making small moves while allowing the younger players to flourish.
  • Bill Parker of DRays Bay looks in the rear view mirror to discuss what the Rays could have done differently in 2012.  The trade of John Jaso to the Mariners for Josh Lueke was among the missteps highlighted.


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65 Comments on "Quick Hits: Braves, Leyland, Soriano, Phillies, Rays"


deewitt92
2 years 10 months ago

David Wright to the Braves? I’m all for cashing in Wright when his Values high but to the Braves…I don’t think so…plus management would never hear the end of it

Defiancy
2 years 10 months ago

Yeah I don’t really see Wright to the Braves as realistic in any event. The Mets certainly wouldn’t make him available to the Braves.

2 years 10 months ago

Yea the package would have to be really enticing to say the least probably like Martin Prado, one of the young arms they have as well as some others with them.

deewitt92
2 years 10 months ago

maybe julio teheran as a young arm? but still it would burn as a met fan to see him in a braves uniform

TDKnies
2 years 10 months ago

That’s aiming awful high on just about every one of those Braves suggestions. I’d like just about any of them to be on the team, but I’m not a big fan of having some money come off the books only to spend it immediately. And I’m still iffy on whether Wren would pay out big time prospects to acquire new guys through trades.

Defiancy
2 years 10 months ago

I think if it was a guy like Headley or say Justin Upton he’d give up the prospects. He seemed pretty willing to part with them for Dempster. I think Wren is definitely open to dealing, he just won’t give up the farm for one guy like it has been done in the past.

sdsuphilip
2 years 10 months ago

nm

Wek
2 years 10 months ago

Why would the Yankees resign Soriano when they still have Mariano and Robertson? Bullpen help is the least of Yankee’s concern.

tomymogo
2 years 10 months ago

Mariano is a free agent coming off knee surgery at 43 years old, they want a plan B just in case

Wek
2 years 10 months ago

Plan B should not be a 3 year $35mil contract when there are more than capable in house options.

EDIT: Can’t forget an opt-out clause after every year.

slider32
2 years 10 months ago

I agree, they will want Soiano back!

tomymogo
2 years 10 months ago

Unless Braves acquire David Wright somehow, you can pretty much count on Prado being the new 3B, so in other words Prado is the new 3B.

I like Torii Hunter for LF, and Michael Bourn for CF.
CF Michael Bourn
3B Martin Prado
RF Jason Heyward
LF Torii Hunter
1B Freddy Freeman
2B Dan Uggla
C Brian McCann
SS Andrealton Simmons

Torii kills lefties, plays solid D, and is a great clubhouse presence

Colin Christopher
2 years 10 months ago

Hunter wants to re-sign with the Angels, and Arte Moreno has all but admitted that they want him back. The Braves aren’t getting him.

tomymogo
2 years 10 months ago

Like I said in my post to BobOfArslan, they need to solve their situation before they can consider Hunter. What people don’t seem to get is how bad Wells deal is, 42 million for the next 2 seasons and he is a bench player?, but Bourjous is a great player, and to have him on the bench is a real shame.

Anyway, if I’m the Angels I’m desperately looking for some left handed bats. To me, I’d go after Chase Headley to play 3B who switch hits instead of focusing on Hunter, and stay with Morales at DH who also switch hits. That means trading Mark Trumbo and others for Chase Headley, put Trout in RF, Bourjous in CF, and Wells in LF

BobOfArslan
2 years 10 months ago

Thanks for explaining the many reasons why the Angels, should, and WILL re-sign Torii.

tomymogo
2 years 10 months ago

I mean seriously the Angels have Vernon Wells, Mark Trumbo, Peter Bourjous, Mike Trout, and Kendrys Morales. What’s the plan? Release Vernon Wells who is owed 42 million the next two seasons, keep benching Bourjous, what they have unlimited funds to do all that even after not winning?

They need to make some trades, and nobody wants Wells, and Morales is clearly a DH, but Trumbo needs to play. I can’t think about why would the Angels further complicate their situation by signing Hunter to 12-13 million per year at age 37

2 years 10 months ago

A good point. Why exactly did they trade a guy w/ .350 OBP for a guy w/ a 6 ERA?

EdinsonPickle
2 years 10 months ago

At the time, the Rays had a wealth of mediocre catchers who they thought could fill the void behind the plate. They had Jose Molina, Robinson Chirinos, and Jose Loboton. They had a bullpen in shackles, and Lueke had a good arm that they thought would flourish, so they pulled the trigger. I loved the deal for the M’s at the time, and it sure did pay off. Jaso had a nice year in ’12

RippinNTearinAB
2 years 10 months ago

My suggestions for the Braves at Center

Fowler
Span
BJ Upton.

I really don’t want Bourn back. Strikes out too much and will never steal 60 bases for braves.

When I read he suggested Chris Young, I immediately laughed.

withpower
2 years 10 months ago

I can see the thought process behind the Young suggestion. He’s not a perfect player but he does a lot of things well. Plays his position well, has good power, career BB rate is over 10%.

He could be a nice fit even if they went after one of those guys you suggested.

RippinNTearinAB
2 years 10 months ago

Braves have enough players who can’t hit for average. We don’t need another .230 20 homerun hitter. With exception of Upton, the first two are much better fits.

withpower
2 years 10 months ago

It looks like Uggla and McCann [who prior to this year was a .286 career hitter who never hit below .270 in a season] are the only everyday guys on the roster who fit that description.

RippinNTearinAB
2 years 10 months ago

I don’t believe Heyward or Freeman will ever hit .280 or above, especially Heyward. Only legit guy that hits for average is Prado. Simmons maybe, but unsure right now.

withpower
2 years 10 months ago

I think it’s a little early to make that determination on two 23 year olds, considering one of them [Freeman] already hit .282 last year and Heyward hit .277 his rookie year and .269 this year.

RippinNTearinAB
2 years 10 months ago

Well, I think it is time to get proven players rather than relying on young players to turn into superstars. Been a failure for the braves to turn a superstar since Chipper.

Heyward and Freeman have been so inconsistent this year.

withpower
2 years 10 months ago

Freeman has back to back 20 HR seasons as a 21 and 22 year old. Jason Heyward hit 27 HR this year. They are proven players.

RippinNTearinAB
2 years 10 months ago

Good for them. Numbers this year for both of them have been sporadic. No consistency.

withpower
2 years 10 months ago

That’s usually how it goes in baseball.

RippinNTearinAB
2 years 10 months ago

Moot point right now though. The Braves need a run producer in the lineup.

DerangedAngry Hilbilly
2 years 10 months ago

run producer you say? using batting avg to back up your numbers you say? I would take Chriis Young for center in a heart beat. Great defender, steals bases, hits for power. who cares what his batting avg is. He’d put up 3.5 WAR in that park for half of Bourn’s wages…. heck, I wouldn’t mind going a little faster and picking up Pagan for left either. OF D would remain stellar, and we would have some speed throughout the lineup. with the money saved by only dropping $16mill for Pagan and Young, the team could send Delgado/Teheran (and some parts) to the Rays for Shields and have this rotation next year:

Shields
Medlen
Hudson
Minor
Maholm/Hanson

They could then decide to trade Maholm or Hanson and build up the farm again.

Not to mention that when Beachy returns, right before the trade deadline, they would have either Maholm or Hanson to trade then as well.

RippinNTearinAB
2 years 10 months ago

Yes run producer I say. They were among the worst in th NL with runners in scoring position.

DerangedAngry Hilbilly
2 years 10 months ago

RISP isn’t a skill….. RBI’s a product of your fellow players getting on base. “Clutch Hitters” are a proven myth…. The Braves problem was that they were young, and young batters are streaky. Adding “run producers ” as you call them (overpaid free agents with an RBI history) aren’t going to do much but drain the payroll. This team gets on base plenty, you add two more good defenders in the OF who are excellent baserunners in Pagan and Young(plus Young’s 20 HR pop) and the team would be excellent.

If Pagan and Young and Prado produce as they usually do, you are looking at around 13-16 WAR from those spots plus Prado at 3rd. (this year the Braves got 15 from those 3 spots, and I bet Bourn never tops 4 WAR again). and Young and Pagan will cost around $16mill total. That’s good value, is smart, and doesn’t handcuff future payroll.

RippinNTearinAB
2 years 10 months ago

The Braves have a lot of money to spend. Those two guys will not make the team any better than it was this year. The braves need a legit middle of the order hitter. They lacked one this year, and will handcuff them again if they go into the season going cheap.

DerangedAngry Hilbilly
2 years 10 months ago

They don’t have as much money as you think, they have to pay arb to Heyward,Hanson,O’Flaherty,Venters,Prado. The braves forum I’m on ,we figured they have around $25-$28 mill to spend depending on if the team payroll goes up. and that includes the bench and bullpen situations.(and this assumes,Huddy,Maholm and Mac’s options are picked up).

so if you want to overpay for Swisher (or trade for your mythic “run producer” ) just know that there won’t be a whole heck of a lot of $$$ left for CF.

This isn’t a video game, you aren’t gonna trade your struggling stars (Uggla) for another teams performing stars (Kinsler, like you suggested earlier). Good GM’s also don’t create need by trading filled positions (like say 2B) Uggla was 7th in WAR at 2b this season, if that isn’t good enough for you, may I suggest becoming a Yankees fan….

On a team with a middle of the road payroll like the Braves, you have to maximize value. Pagan and Young spread their value over their defense (well Pagan would in LF) baserunning and hitting. True neither is some “big name” that gets the casual fans all excited, but when you consider that we could get 10 WAR out of them for a combined $16mill or so, that’s smart. That’s using your payroll dollar to it’s full value.

tomymogo
2 years 10 months ago

I love Fowler

RippinNTearinAB
2 years 10 months ago

Hopeful thinking and probably unrealistic, but why not trade for Tulo, then move him to third?

Braves have to do something big after the debacle of a finish against the Cards. Got to get the fans excited again, especially with Chipper done. They have money to spent, no excuses.

However, mid season, Wren said he will acquire an ace, but instead traded for Maholm. Can’t trust Wren to get something big done.

phillies1102
2 years 10 months ago

1. He refuses to play 3B
2. Way too costly, prospects and cash
3. Completely unneccesary
4. The most untouchable player on the Rockies
5. Has not trade clause, publicly stated he will reject all trades to east coast teams

inkstainedscribe
2 years 10 months ago

Get Chris Young from the DBacks for CF, sign Victorino for LF and re-sign Johnson as a 4th OF. Then, the big gamble: Offer Uggla for Chone Figgins to play 2B. Who blinks?

RippinNTearinAB
2 years 10 months ago

I don’t know if you are serious but things like that is the reason why the braves are not winning in the postseason.

inkstainedscribe
2 years 10 months ago

Somewhat serious. SV is cheaper than Bourn and less of a long term commitment. Young will not require an overpay and can cover Turner’s big CF. The Figgins proposal is semi-serious. Uggla is going to become an albatross in a hurry; perhaps he can remake himself in the AL as a DH.

Defiancy
2 years 10 months ago

No way the Braves would ever trade Uggla for Figgins. Figgins will probably get released, the Braves could pick him up for free. He’s been on a whole nother level of awful compared to Uggla.

phillies1102
2 years 10 months ago

I think the Braves will probably go towards free agency for 3B. 3 guys (Rolen, Reynolds, and Youkilis) all have their good and bads, but their all righties, which will help balance their lefty lineup.

Not a Braves fan, actually a Phils fan, but they have guys who can hit at every position, no need to get a great 3B. As for CF I hope they sign Bourn. That way, the Phillies can’t and will get a more fitting player like Angel Pagan.

tomymogo
2 years 10 months ago

More easy to get a LF and move Prado to 3B who plays great defense over there.

Michael Bourn, Dexter Fowler, Josh Willingham, Torii Hunter, and Josh Willingham are all fine by me.

Have my reservations with Ben Revere, Denard Span, Chris Young, Cody Ross, Justin Upton, and BJ Upton, because none of them have had consistent careers.

And obviously Josh Hamilton is out of the question.

withpower
2 years 10 months ago

Baltimore stopped playing Reynolds at third, so his days there might be over. Rolen might be cooked at this point.

tomymogo
2 years 10 months ago

I think Rolen retires, Youkilis is the only semi good 3B out there

Joe Valenti
2 years 10 months ago

Was that because he is a bad 3B? When he played for AZ he was pretty solid

withpower
2 years 10 months ago

I believe he was having some trouble over at the hot corner this year, yes.

BradyAndersonsSideburns
2 years 10 months ago

He’s awful at third…trust me

East Coast Bias
2 years 10 months ago

I like the Olt idea. Similar to what the Mariners/Yankees did last year, trade Olt for a young controllable pitcher of same caliber. Seems like a win/win. Olt is blocked by Beltre. And Texas will be in need of SP.

RippinNTearinAB
2 years 10 months ago

I was thinking maybe the Braves could trade for Andrus or Kinsler (move him to left).

In fact was thinking the Braves could pry both,

Braves get Andrus and Kinsler

Rangers get McCann, Uggla, and Delgado/Teheran.

tomymogo
2 years 10 months ago

Andrus at 2B? no, I like Kinsler but Andrus isn’t really a big deal

East Coast Bias
2 years 10 months ago

That doesn’t make sense for the Rangers. If they want a catcher, they can sign Napoli, or wait until their top C prospect comes up (I forget his name, but he’s top 5 in their system). That being said, why would you essentially give up Kinsler for Uggla? I understand why Andrus could be considered expendable, but they have to get value back.

It may be a good idea to check in on the Castellanos to OF experiment in Detroit also, another 3B blocked by the major league team (Miggy). But Teheran for Olt still sounds better.

RippinNTearinAB
2 years 10 months ago

Napoli is a free agent and will cost more if they want to resign him. McCann is going to be a career DH soon anyway. Uggla will thrive in Arlington. Teheran/Delgado will help them with good young pitching.

I don’t mind Olt, just don’t see why they would trade him now when they were reluctant to trade him for Greinke.

East Coast Bias
2 years 10 months ago

That’s my point. If they want a catcher, they can just pay Napoli, instead of giving up prospects and money. Plus, the catching prospect thing…

Uggla may thrive in Arlington, but he will not be more valuable than Kinsler in Arlington.

Lastly, they would trade Olt now rather than for Greinke because they could get a YOUNG pitcher that will be CHEAP and under team CONTROL for years.

Obviously.

RippinNTearinAB
2 years 10 months ago

Rangers need a proven ace right now. They have zero #1 starters in their rotation. Greinke is still young and in his prime. Teheran or Delgado will not pay immediate dividends for the Rangers next year.

East Coast Bias
2 years 10 months ago

Dude. Greinke is a free agent going into the off season this year. Do you understand that there was no guarantee he would stay with Texas if they gave up Olt for him? Just like there is no guarantee he will stay with Anaheim after this year.

The better option, which is still available, is to sign him in free agency, if they really want Greinke. IF they do that, Olt is still blocked by Beltre, which brings me back to initial suggestion with Teheran.

RippinNTearinAB
2 years 10 months ago

Valid point but I just don’t see why they would trade Olt right now even for Teheran or Delgado. They are potentially losing Hamilton, so they want to make sure they keep some young talented player with power. With Young’s decline and Andrus potentially being available for trade this off season, I don’t think they will trade Olt unless it is for a proven starter. As a Braves fan, I would love to see this trade happen but I doubt it.

East Coast Bias
2 years 10 months ago

Where are you getting that Kinsler is available for trade?! That’s totally absurd! He signed a 75m extension that keeps him with the team until 2017 with an option for 2018. Why would Texas extend him if they want to trade him?

But back to the point… Olt is a 3B. Beltre is signed until 2015 with an option for 2016. Olt is essentially blocked at his position unless they move him to the outfield, which is not impossible.. or they DH him, which is a waste of value.

I’m not saying they can’t move him for an established ace, but I think the more prudent thing to do would be to get a close to mlb level pitching prospect that is cheap and under control for years to come.

Because they can always get an established ace through free agency without giving up prospects (Greinke, Haren, Peavy, etc…)

RippinNTearinAB
2 years 10 months ago

Your points are valid, but it is pure speculation at this point from both of us because Olt may not be available.

Btw, I meant to say Andrus, not Kinsler.

Leonard Washington
2 years 10 months ago

Does Soriano really think he is gonna top 14M this offseason??? With his health inconsistancies I wouldn’t pay him a dime over 11M and even then it would be 3 years tops. If Soriano wants year security maybe they can work out something like that where he gets 11 or so over a few more years.

jigokusabre
2 years 10 months ago

1. Ozzie isn’t fired yet, so the Marlin’s don’t have an opening.
2. There are plenty of other candidates. Why not Dave Magadan, Terry Pendleton, or Mark Redmond?

Travis White
2 years 10 months ago

If the Braves want to go cheaper on a 3rd base option, they could look into trading for Matt Carpenter from the Cardinals. As a Cards fan, I think he’s pretty good and I doubt he would be that expensive

RippinNTearinAB
2 years 10 months ago

No thanks. Freese maybe.

coreybishop
2 years 10 months ago

If the Braves want Wright, I don’t think any conversations start without, at the very least, Prado and Delgado, and then some. Not the right move for Atlanta.

2 years 10 months ago

If the Braves want a center fielder I’m sure the Angels could be talked into trading them Vernon Wells.