West Notes: Choo, Astros, Kotsay

The Rangers' seven-year, $130MM agreement with Shin-Soo Choo brings total spending this offseason to around $1.543 billion, according to Yahoo Sports' Jeff Passan. With players such as Ervin Santana, Matt Garza and Ubaldo Jimenez still available, the 2006 record of approximately $1.75 billion appears likely to be broken, and spending is certain to eclipse $2 billion if Masahiro Tanaka is posted. There simply isn't anywhere else to put the game's booming revenues now that spending has been capped in the draft and international free agency, Passan writes. Let's look at more late-night links from the AL and NL West:

47 Responses to West Notes: Choo, Astros, Kotsay Leave a Reply

  1. MJensen 2 years ago

    Brilliant moves by the Rangers. Adding Fielder and Choo and with Profar coming in, the offense is back where it was in the glory days with Hamilton. An impressive adjustment for a team I pegged as being on the decline.

    • Kirk Edward Gerwin 2 years ago

      Not sure how you can call those glory days when they accomplished nothing. I’m pretty sure that even with the recent regular season success that most Tigers fans would agree that our “Glory Days” were back in 84 when we actually accomplished the ultimate goal. The Rangers have been competitive the last few years but I can’t recall any glory days.

      • Djones2109 2 years ago

        Kirk, trust me . As a life long life ranger fan, going the World Series and losing counts as the glory days for us….too many 78 win seasons in my lifetime

        • Kirk Edward Gerwin 2 years ago

          Oh I know what it’s like. I’m a Lions fan as well. I’m used to disappointment.

  2. txftw 2 years ago

    I don’t usually like JJT, but he is right that the front office FINALLY understood the offense needed upgrading. I don’t love Choo’s contract, but in the short term it’s an improvement for sure. Plus it isn’t my money!

  3. Evan 2 years ago

    It’s gonna be important to stay healthy. Oakland always wins with depth, and they have only added to it this offseason. Its a do-or-die year for Wash.

  4. clydefrog13 2 years ago

    Here’s a novel idea, pass the savings of revenue on to the fans. Just kidding.

  5. pft2 2 years ago

    Teams had about 750 million more to spend this year as a result of the national TV deal. Also, the additional WC spot puts the post season revenue in reach for more teams. Next years free agent class looks weak so some teams decide to spend more this year.

    Seems like only the Yankees are seeking to cut salaries back to 2002 levels despite a new stadium financed with tax dollars and ticket prices that among the highest in baseball, and flush with 400 million in cash from the News Corp deal. Yet even they were able to spend 300 million while still cutting the payroll 20%

  6. kungfucampby 2 years ago

    Daniels is woefully overrated. Andrus extension was terrible, and some of his trades have been particularly suspect. For a team that’s never had a decent 1B under his control, he’s traded both Adrian Gonzalez and Chris Davis away for nothing in return.

    • Kyle 2 years ago

      Almost any GM in the league, if put in the Rangers’ position, would have traded Chris Davis away. It’s absolutely ridiculous to suggest otherwise. Davis had numerous chances to prove himself, and the Rangers had an opportunity to add one of the best relievers in the League for a WS run. C’mon.

      • mrsjohnmiltonrocks 2 years ago

        I do think that Chris Davis was never going to make it if he stayed in Texas. For whatever reason, Davis and the Rangers coaches couldn’t figure out how to get the best of him.

        I do hope that Texas realizes that and at least puts some thought into why things were that way with Davis. Davis has been interviewed on the subject; he clearly has put some thought into it.

        • Thizzie 2 years ago

          Davis partied hard at night when playing for TX, that made it hard. He said it was because he was never sure if he would be in the lineup the next day.

          But… Napoli did it too and he was awesome

      • Bernabe 2 years ago

        You have no idea what other GM’s would have done and suggesting you do is absolutely ridiculous.

        “If put in the Rangers’ position”…..The Rangers put themselves in that position. They were short a bullpen arm and made a win-now trade that turned out to be horrific.

        “Davis had numerous chances to prove himself”…..One could also argue that the Rangers had numerous chances to benefit from Davis’ talent and failed in their evaluation/development of him. They had one of the best hitters in the game right under their noses and traded him for a bullpen rental.

        • charles stevens 2 years ago

          Texas did give Davis every opportunity and we wanted him to do well. He was a local guy and playing in his hometown became overwhelming for him. He needed a fresh start. He was moved to add one of the best relievers in the game in a push to win a championship. Nobody knew Davis would turn into the player he is. Justin Smoak was a can’t miss prospect too. Hows that working out for Seattle? You win some moves and you lose some. Thats just how baseball goes.

          • TigerFan1968 2 years ago

            you don’t pass off blunders like Chris Davis as win some lose some. Other recent blunders by Rangers include all the signings of Andrus, Fielder, Choo Nathan. Fielder may work out but Choo I really can not see it.

          • Charlie Burns 2 years ago

            How was Nathan a blunder?

          • JustAnother24 2 years ago

            Remind me how Nathan was a blunder?

          • TigerFan1968 2 years ago

            You do not give a pitcher coming off a terrible year and injury problems, and 36 years old a whopping two year contract, and then call yourself a genius when it works out. It’s like horse racing. If you are smart you work hard to find and bet the best horses. If you have an unlimited payroll well bet every horse, and call yourself a genius when you win. But the Tigers another unlimited payroll team are taking a similar chance with Joe, this time it is his age. They are all not going to Mariano Rivera.

          • oz10 2 years ago

            Way too early to call Andrus, Fielder and Choo a blunder. Trading to get Napoli was a hit, not signing Hamilton was the right move. Texiera for that haul was a huge win. The Nathan signing was a huge hit. Unloading Kinsler’s contract was a bonus and we needed power. We all know that Fielder would have gotten a HUGE payday if he were on the open market, so that contract is a steal (I use that loosely) in comparison to what power hitters get on the open market ($19.6 mil AAV compared to the $25 he probably gets as a FA). Chris Davis failed here for 3 years.

      • kungfucampby 2 years ago

        Uhh Koji Uehara was left off the postseason roster by the Rangers, which was hilarious considering how badly they needed help in the series.

        Also it was the Rangers who insisted on changing Davis’s swing. So yeah, I can blame Daniels.

    • charles stevens 2 years ago

      We had a good 1B. JD turned him into Andrus, Feliz, Harrison, Saltalamacchia. Now he has turned Kinsler into a Prince. If thats overrated I don’t know how to make you happy.

      • basilisk4 2 years ago

        Uh, because I, like the Tigers, would rather have Kinsler than Prince?

        • charles stevens 2 years ago

          The Tigers dumped salary. It had nothing to do with being in love with Kinsler.

        • oz10 2 years ago

          Then you haven’t watched much of kindler and his towering pop ups when the game is on the line. And it is widely acknowledged that that trade is a win win for both teams.

        • basilisk4 2 years ago

          Ok, in fairness, I just looked at Kinsler’s contract, which is also terrible. $16 million a year for that guy? Hard to say which contract is worse.

  7. charles stevens 2 years ago

    I don’t think JD is done. He could’ve waited Choo out and probably got a better deal but he wanted this done for some reason. I think its so they can move focus on to the next big fish. If you notice they deferred some of Choo’s money in the first two years. They wouldn’t need to do that unless they planned to make another significant move. If you trade for Price its two years of arbitration before his and Beltres contract come off the books. Something is up and I get the sense they are either in the shadows on Price or are gearing up to go get Tanaka. Stay tuned.

  8. LeylandsLung 2 years ago

    So JD is now brilliant? I remember another team (Blue Jays) who had a great winter last year. How did they do? How you look on paper isn’t always reflected on the field. This is a truckload of money tied up in a few who may be past their prime.

    • charles stevens 2 years ago

      The writer in question is an ESPN Dallas homer. He gets paid to promote Dallas teams. The guy doesn’t know anything about baseball. I agree nothing is won on paper but JD has put together one hell of a roster which is what he’s paid to do.

  9. Zak A 2 years ago

    Nice move. Choo & Fielder >> than Cruz & Kinsler. So they stick Choo’s declining defense in LF and Martin/Rios man CF. All they’d need offensively would be a LH situational catcher but they won’t carry 3 with JP & Soto. Team looks pretty solid though.

  10. basilisk4 2 years ago

    This isn’t as bad as trading for Fielder, which was a colossal blunder, but the Choo contract still appears to be a colossal overpay (and too many years).

    • $3513744 2 years ago

      maybe so, but i’m almost positive you wouldn’t have been able to get him for less.

      • basilisk4 2 years ago

        You’re probably right. I would’ve liked the Braves to keep Brian McCann, but the price the Yankees paid was insane. In the current market, sometimes you have to overpay if you really want a player, I guess.

  11. jebodiah springfield 2 years ago

    wow….to say JD is one of the best GM’s is very nieve. thats like saying Cashman is great too. any GM that has seemingly unlimited funds and cant take home the title evey year is pretty pathetic actually. my grandma can sign everyone to a contract when the money is always there, not a lot of skill or knowledge needed for that.

    • basilisk4 2 years ago

      Daniels has made some absolutely great moves, but I think these last two moves are suspect at best. The fact that the Tigers were able to convince someone else to relieve them of that awful Fielder contract is amazing and Dombrowski should get tons of credit for that.

      • charles stevens 2 years ago

        Texas could argue the same for Kinsler. Both players had bad contracts. Tigers wanted salary relief. Texas needed room for Profar and someone to provide offense and protect Beltre. You have to look at the big picture. If you look at what Texas owes Fielder after Detroit threw in money and I don’t think you could buy that production on the free agent market for less money.

        • basilisk4 2 years ago

          Yeah, I just looked at Kinsler’s deal and I think you’re probably right. Fielder’s contract is still awful (or will be by the end of it), but I had no idea Kinsler was being overpaid so badly over the next few years.

      • Seanb1223 2 years ago

        The Tigers agreed to take Kinsler and his contract AND pay $30M for JD to take Fielder. The Rangers needed a lefty power bat and they got it in the form of a career .389 OBP 1st baseman. Then JD signs Choo who happens to own the exact same career OBP. The Rangers struggled to get on base and force opposing pitchers to throw strikes. Many offensive problems have been solved and the entire farm system is still in tact. Those who don’t like Jon Daniels don’t pay attention to the details. Do you remember the shape of the Rangers in 2007?

        • basilisk4 2 years ago

          I don’t have anything against Daniels. I just wouldn’t want Fielder’s contract and am not a big fan of signing Choo that far out. Daniels is certainly done a great job turning the Rangers from a bottom-of-the-barrel organization into a perennial contender. Didn’t he author the Teixeira trade, after all? But that doesn’t mean I have to agree with all of his moves.

          • Seanb1223 2 years ago

            The Rangers have 3 more years of Beltre manning 3B. They had a logjam at middle infield and they had a glaring hole in the lineup at 1B. JD solved both of those problems by trading the oldest and most expensive middle infielder for one of the most durable power hitting first basemen in the game. The Rangers are in “win now” mode and they’re going for it. If they don’t win it all in the next 3 years, then we can all look with hindsight and say Fielder and Choo were mistakes, but until that happens, I’m on board with the way JD has approached this offseason.

          • basilisk4 2 years ago

            I am nitpicking somewhat here, but I have the same concerns everyone has about the likely effect of Prince’s physique as he ages. I would also note that after averaging 43 HR and 121 RBI from ’07-’09, his averages have been 31 HR and 104 RBI from ’10-’13. Still very nice totals, yes, but not what they were earlier in his career. Is there some reason to believe those numbers will go up with half his games at Arlington? Sure, but I would have expected that hitting in a lineup with Miguel Cabrera would have helped (and it didn’t). It’s far too early to tell, but there are reasons to be suspicious about whether Prince’s career will trend downward in the next few years.

          • $3513744 2 years ago

            well that’s kind of the best part isn’t it? you don’t have to have those contracts. it’s something they get to deal with. you just get to watch what happens on the field.

  12. liberalconservative 2 years ago

    Over paying a free agent doesn’t make you a great GM just ask Cashman about Arod. A great GM builds a team from the minors up to contending. Daniels inherited a top farm system when he became a GM.

    • charles stevens 2 years ago

      “Daniels inherited a top farm system” JD took over a team with aging players and absolutely no talent in the minors. He turned around the farm and it took a few years of being the Astros but it worked. The talent started showing up on the big league club and the farm is still the strength of this organization. Mixing a few key free agents with a young homegrown roster is smart baseball.

    • txftw 2 years ago

      I bet you have no clue when he became GM. Oh, I’ll give you a hint, it wasn’t when Nolan left

  13. Fat, Ugly Inner-City Sweathog 2 years ago

    Rangers should be beastly this year, especially if they can shore up the rotation. Doesn’t even have to be a Price-type guy

    • txftw 2 years ago

      They have plenty of guys that can start but now that Texas is officially in win now mode Perez ideally wouldn’t be your 3rd guy. Hopefully Harrison can be that guy (especially since the Rangers extended him). If he doesn’t rebound then they could use a #3 to put after Darvish and Holland and push Perez back to being the 4th starter.

      • Steven Russell 2 years ago

        Harrison definitely has the potential to be an amazing #3 guy, he has been one of our best pitchers over the last few years but yes, he’s gotta bounce back from the injury. He’s held down the #1 and #2 spots before. Hopefully Perez can continue to grow as well. It would be nice to add another guy somewhere in the rotation so Ross can stay in the pen and Ogando can return.

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