NL East Notes: Wacha, Uggla, Phillies, Williams

The Mets were focused on position players in the 2012 draft, which is why they took shortstop Gavin Cecchini with the draft's 12th overall selection and didn't take Michael Wacha, the New York Post's Mike Puma writes.  Paul DePodesta, the Mets' VP of player development and amateur scouting, tells Puma that "we really liked Wacha, and he was high up on our board," but the team felt it had enough minor league pitching depth already and needed help around the diamond.  Wacha, of course, ended up going to the Cardinals with the 19th overall pick and has already emerged as a star during St. Louis' postseason run.

Here's some more from around the NL East…

  • "The Braves certainly will entertain shopping" Dan Uggla, according to MLB.com's Joe Frisaro reports, and he looks at the chances of Uggla re-joining the Marlins as part of a reader mailbag.  Frisaro suggests the Braves would move Uggla if a team agrees to pay $6MM of the $26MM owed to Uggla through the 2015 season, and if the trade partner pays more, Atlanta could add a prospect.  I'd suggest that the Braves would have to sweeten the pot to move Uggla, who turns 34 in March, is a defensive liability at second base and has only hit .201/.330/.374 over the last two seasons.  The Braves have been linked to a possible deal of Uggla and a prospect to the Reds for Brandon Phillips
  • The Braves have "been lucky of late" to remain competitive despite overspending on Uggla and B.J. Upton, Mark Bradley of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution writes.  Bradley warns that the team can't afford any more of these overpriced deals, and suggests that re-signing Brian McCann would create another payroll albatross in a few years' time.
  • The Phillies' chances of re-signing Carlos Ruiz, their limited payroll and a suggestion about a David Price trade are all addressed in a Phillies-centric reader mailbag from MLB.com's Todd Zolecki.
  • That limited Phillies budget could make it hard to upgrade their rotation since there won't be many bargains to be found on the pitching market this winter, David Murphy of the Philadelphia Daily News writes.
  • Matt Williams "seems to be the best available choice" to be the Nationals' next manager, and though Thomas Boswell of the Washington Post notes some of the risks involved in the impending hiring, he feels it could be a bold move for the team.

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