Quick Hits: Drew, Orioles, Samardzija, Rockies

No one is crying for Stephen Drew and Kendrys Morales, who turned down $14.1MM and remain unemployed, but Joel Sherman of the New York Post thinks its unfortunate that they have been subjected to the qualifying offer system.  In Sherman’s view, players already have too little control over their careers.  On top of that, accepting a one-year, $14.1MM deal isn’t as much of a slam dunk as it seems.  If a player doesn’t like where he is playing, or get along with his manager, or finds that the home ballpark is problematic to his game, he should have the opportunity to scope out the open market and look elsewhere without being hindered by the tag.  Here’s more from around baseball..

  • Will the Orioles go out-of-house for a first baseman?  Manager Buck Showalter doesn’t seem to think such a move is imminent.  “There are other people, but nobody yet that we like better than the options we have in-house, yet,” said the skipper, according to Rich Dubroff of CSNBaltimore.com (on Twitter).
  • Brewers pitcher Matt Garza offered up some advice for former teammate Jeff Samardzija, who is expected to be shopped by the Cubs this summer. “All I can tell him is keep pitching; pitch your way out of it,” said Garza, according to Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times. “Keep your eyes focused, your eyes straight ahead and just pitch. There’s nothing else you can do.”
  • The Dexter Fowler trade is reaping early rewards for the Rockies, writes Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post.  Many wondered how the Rockies would replace Fowler’s leadoff bat and outfield glove, but Jordan Lyles‘ early pitching and Brandon Barnes‘ high-energy have made Colorado look wise so far.  On top of that, the salary savings from moving Fowler to the Astros allowed the Rockies to sign Justin Morneau, who has also looked strong through the season’s opening month.
  • Months after he agreed to a four-year, $60MM deal, Curtis Granderson and the Mets finally started to find some magic together this week, writes Barry Federovitch of the Star-Ledger.


50 Responses to Quick Hits: Drew, Orioles, Samardzija, Rockies Leave a Reply

  1. $3513744 1 year ago

    ummm…maybe i’m crazy in thinking they aren’t hindered by the QO tag as much as they are hindered by wanting more than anyone is willing to pay them.

  2. Boohoo Drew. Getting paid 14.1 million to play for the defending champs in one of the best baseball cities is a tragedy of Shakespearian proportions.

    • $3513744 1 year ago

      i bet it’s because he doesn’t like winning championships.

    • rct 1 year ago

      Exactly. Plus if he played well, he could perhaps get QO’ed next season as well. Given that the QO is probably going to be $15MM+, it would equal out to a 2 year, ~$30MM deal. That would be an amazing deal for Drew.

  3. Shane Flannagan 1 year ago

    Gotta love Garza, acting like he was this big time pitcher with Cubs where he was on the DL about half the time and then the other half he was pitching with an era of around 4 and then throwing bunted balls into the stands.

    • 3.45 ERA with the Cubs is an era of around 4??? Perhaps you may want to compare Garza’s numbers with the Cubs to Samardzija’s numbers with the Cubs as a full time starter – Garza beats him in virtually everything (except SO/9 by .2).

      As for the minor exaggerations; assuming 33 starts a season, Garza made 60 starts out of a possible 86; or 70% of possible starts. And the bunted balls thrown into stands…a minuscule amount compared to the outs he induced pitching.

      • Shane Flannagan 1 year ago

        Its ok, you will understand what I’m talking about as the season goes. He thinks he’s an ace but he’s a number 3 at best.

        • Number 3 at best – that’s funny. Sour grapes, huh?

          • Brien Alley 1 year ago

            Garza is a great clubhouse guy. Has some good streaks but is definitely not a TOR guy a number 3 is probably about right. Cubs made a great deal for him, I wouldn’t take that trade back at all.

  4. Jose 1 year ago

    There’s an excuse me effort at work here trying to portray Drew and Morales as innocent victims of a system that they should know better about. The bottom line is that they left 14.1 MM over the table and because of that they remain unemployed at this late. They’re not superstars and they should know it. The best thing to do for them is to fire Scott Boras and move on.

    • Trock 1 year ago

      And I guarantee even if they wait till no draft pick is tied to them they don’t get near 14.1

      • johnsilver 1 year ago

        Pro rated of course.

        Maybe Boras should sign guarantees with his clients where he will make up any lost wages he costs them from his erroneous ways of late to any players, excepting the top 10-15% of the ones he represents of all MLP players in the game?

  5. Karkat 1 year ago

    “Players already have too little control over their careers”

    I feel so sorry for these players who don’t have as many options on where they can earn eight-figure salaries as they’d like.

  6. Metsfan93 1 year ago

    I somewhat agree with Sherman, in that we don’t know Morales and Drew personally. For Drew, especially, I agree a bit. Morales simply didn’t have a market to begin with, but Drew got saddled by the QO and certain teams (re: St. Louis) willing to pay up for a shortstop at a cost Drew would’ve signed for, but unwilling to part with a pick. His own team also didn’t really seem to want him much. Most of the other QO players could’ve returned early in the offseason to their own teams, but Boston seemed to want to get rid of Drew and made the offer and restricted his market.

    • We don’t need to know Drew and Morales personally, it’s their agent who’s the problem. Boras used them in an effort to stick it to the QO system and that was a bad idea.

      Boston and Seattle wanted both of them back at fair prices. Boras doesn’t like to deal with fair prices and both of those teams had contingency plans.

      • jb226 1 year ago

        Let’s stop with the Boras hate. At BEST you can say he gave them bad advice, but everything is ultimately on the shoulders of the player. He decides whether or not to sign a contract.

        And let’s not forget that these players are choosing Boras precisely because his hard-nosed tactics have resulted in ridiculous contracts for past clients. It’s not like they’re caught unaware of how Boras operates; they picked him because of it.

        • You are correct that these players have chosen this route. Boras and Drew’s brother did this before when the Phillies drafted him.

          But Boras really messed up on Morales.

        • johnsilver 1 year ago

          Hate has nothing to do with it. Cold hard facts which Boras is in constant denial about when they do not favor himself, or his clients do matter.

          As I have posted here dozens of times myself, as well have others.. Boras just doesn’t like facts where they dispute his own inflated ideas of the current market, where he will pull a stunt.. Just like he did with Drew/Morales and proclaim the system is broken when it’s HIM that has been the problem moreso than anyone else for years with his one track way.

        • johnsilver 1 year ago

          Hate has nothing to do with it. Cold hard facts which Boras is in constant denial about when they do not favor himself, or his clients do matter.

          As I have posted here dozens of times myself, as well have others.. Boras just doesn’t like facts where they dispute his own inflated ideas of the current market, where he will pull a stunt.. Just like he did with Drew/Morales and proclaim the system is broken when it’s HIM that has been the problem moreso than anyone else for years with his one track way.

    • Jose 1 year ago

      Red Sox wanted Drew back, but at the right price. They weren’t overpaying him in years neither in average annual value. Scott Boras is selling him for something like 4 years/50 MM. I wonder if that – more than the vilified QO is what keeps Drew unemployed. Notice that teams like the Mets – which have their first pick protected, the Yankees – which have already surrendered their first and second draft pick or the Orioles – which have already sign Ubaldo, all of them have been reluctant to sign Drew. It’s not that they don’t want him. It’s about the asking price.

  7. raymondrobertkoenig 1 year ago

    Have to believe that there are many Cub players who will leave when they can, and not many free agents that will sign with them. Unless the Cubs are willing to overpay severely.

    • Red_Line_9 1 year ago

      Have you been watching the 2014 Cubs play? They have more than a few players that are likely just glad w be on a mlb roster. The only two position players on the roster who would likely start for another team are Castro and Rizzo, and Castro is signed long term

      • raymondrobertkoenig 1 year ago

        Yes, I watch every game I can. I believe you missed the point of my comment.

        • Red_Line_9 1 year ago

          I’m just stating that the Cubs have few players that look to have the longevity to put up 6 seasons to make free agency. If I’m Chicago I’m not concerned if Darwin Barney leaves as a free agent. I’m more concerned he hasn’t been replaced on t roster. As for free agents. Money talks and the cubs even given recent constraints are still a top revenue team valued at more than a billion dollars.

    • jb226 1 year ago

      If the rebuild ultimately produces wins, free agents will come. And if not, well, does it really matter whether or not they come? We’re in for a world of hurt if our current crop of minor-league guys doesn’t make an impact.

  8. Lefty_Orioles_Fan
    Lefty_Orioles_Fan 1 year ago

    If a player doesn’t like where he is playing, or get along with his
    manager, or finds that the home ballpark is problematic to his game, he
    should have the opportunity to scope out the open market and look
    elsewhere without being hindered by the tag.
    Wait, what? Drew got a World Series Ring.
    Morales’s Manager resigned during the regular season.
    Plus, his numbers were half decent, he hit pretty well all season long really,
    So what is Sherman talking about here?

    • $3513744 1 year ago

      he makes some good points but his conclusion ultimately fails to recognize that decisions are ultimately the player’s. teams have very good reason to sign good players and players have plenty of reasons to sign. just because they choose not to doesn’t mean they’re being subjected to anything. it’s a system they agreed upon and they should have known what they were negotiating.

  9. Red_Line_9 1 year ago

    Really surprised the union ever went for the QO system. They must have known it would limit contract options. Is there a chance the QO system can be modified to calibrate the value for individual players?

    • $3513744 1 year ago

      i’m sure they’ll look at it again. but the system is never going to work for guys who want more than teams will pay them.

      • Red_Line_9 1 year ago

        At minimum it needs tiering. But given our ability at current financial modeling an assessment could be made on individual players. That wouldn’t limit a player or a team in negotiations… much like a home assessment in a real estate transaction

    • jb226 1 year ago

      I never really understood why MLB went to the QO system. The Type A/Type B system wasn’t that bad except for the fact that it used really poor metrics to decide a player’s rating. The only thing I can think of is they struggled so hard to agree on new metrics that they just gave up, assigned a monetary value and said “meet it or don’t.”

      • Red_Line_9 1 year ago

        Easy answer is a third party financial appraiser. But the chances the union and owners agree on that or even who it would be is slimmer than Lou Gehrig hitting cleanup for the Yankees tday

  10. MetsMagic 1 year ago

    I’d agree with Sherman if the only option the players had was to take the QO or take a hike. Having players sign contracts on a year to year basis would take us back to the pre free-agency era. Morales and Drew, though, were both offered multi-year contracts and chose not to take them.

    • Red_Line_9 1 year ago

      The QO, if it should stand with compensation attached, should be bumped up to only apply to elite FA talent. Or a tier, or individual QO levels need to be established.

  11. jb226 1 year ago

    I still say 90% of the problems with the QO system go away by simply adding a rule that a QO can’t be offered two years in a row by the same team. Yes, players who hated where they were playing would still have to deal with it for one more year, but they get 14.1 million dollars to do so and then they’re free to pursue the contract they think they should have gotten.

    • Red_Line_9 1 year ago

      Can you imagine a mediocre player of Drew’s ability playing season to season @ 14M per?

  12. rct 1 year ago

    Is the article on Granderson purposely silly and grandiose? I’m not familiar with the writer but I can’t imagine someone seriously writing that. Granderson was 3-25 this week. I get that two of them happened to be game winners, but the guy slapped 3 singles in 25 ABs. Let’s not lose our heads here. All three of his triple-slash numbers actually dropped in this past week.

  13. Mike1L 1 year ago

    Sherman has some good points to make, but this was the system in place when Drew and Morales made their choice. They have every right to go for the largest and longest contracts they could possibly get, but, at the end of the day, they had to take a risk to get them, and so far, it hasn’t paid off. Their original asks were probably too high, and, since neither of these players are absolutely top tier, it seems teams who had a need at their respective positions filled them without going through the attenuated Boras process.

  14. As much as people say it is Drew and Morales own fault for not taking the one year deal, it’s just as important to note the fact that both of these guys had bad injuries that knocked them out for extended periods of time.

    Players say it all the time; they prefer multi-year security over a large one year deal. Drew and Morales’s injuries are pretty much the reason why everyone thinks this way, and it should be of no surprise that neither of them wanted to go year to year.

  15. Opti-Mets-tic 1 year ago

    Drew DOES have the opportunity to “scope out the open market”. He can look to be a shelf stocker, perhaps a bag boy, maybe he knows something about plumbing, and could become a plumber, etc. There are lots of opportunities for him, if he wants to be a professional baseball player, perhaps he should accept offers presented to him.

  16. Opti-Mets-tic 1 year ago

    Drew DOES have the opportunity to “scope out the open market”. He can look to be a shelf stocker, perhaps a bag boy, maybe he knows something about plumbing, and could become a plumber, etc. There are lots of opportunities for him, if he wants to be a professional baseball player, perhaps he should accept offers presented to him.

  17. section 34 1 year ago

    Simply not true that no one is crying for Morales and Drew. Seems like I read more weeping about them than about the homeless.

  18. mattyg7 1 year ago

    I like the point about a player simply not liking his current situation. I hadn’t really thought of that before.

  19. I’d be really bummed if I won a World Series with my team. There is NO way I’d go back for 14.1 million to that kind of environment.

  20. $3513744 1 year ago

    maybe so, but if he’s the one choosing to hold out. his situation can be blamed on none other than himself and his agent for not accepting offers they did get. they wanted more, so here they are waiting.

  21. There’s a difference between being wanted and being protection. While Drew’s bat didn’t do much in the postseason, his glove was key. It’s hard to say that he fell completely out of favor when Middlebrooks was actually benched in October.

    Drew was expendable and he might have known that. He wasn’t a 14 million a year player either though and it’s not anyone’s fault but his own that he didn’t take that salary.

  22. mattyg7 1 year ago

    I’m not even talking about Drew. I’m talking about any player offered a QO. It’s not as cut-and-dry as taking the money or not, and I agree that it unfairly hampers a player’s options. And before you say that 14.1 million is enough to withstand any kind of bad situation, that’s not the point.

  23. If 14.1 million enough to withstand any kind of good situation?

  24. $3513744 1 year ago

    no the point all along is that it’s still ultimately up to him to decide which offer he takes. in his case, it’s none.

  25. leberquesgue 1 year ago

    True. And yes, I would have liked to have seen Drew back, partly because I have lost faith in Middlebrooks. I don’t think the negativity some fans have towards Drew for all this is fair. I agree that $14m would have been an overpay, but if he’s willing to hold out for less elsewhere then good luck to him. I am annoyed, by the way, by Boras’s manipulation that will lose the Sox a compensation pick. It seems like sour grapes.

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