Braves left-hander Matt Marksberry, who as of Tuesday was battling potentially serious health issues, awoke from a medically induced coma yesterday, writes David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Marksberry had been suffering from intense stomach pains and wound up suffering a seizure that led to a collapsed lung while at the hospital for treatment, according to O’Brien. Marksberry’s sister tweeted that her brother “still has a long journey ahead of him” as he recovers from the frightening incident. Needless to say, we’re happy to learn that the 26-year-old appears to be on the road to recovery and continue to hold Marksberry in our thoughts as we wish him a speedy recovery.
A few more items from the NL East…
- Neither the Nationals nor Ian Desmond are entirely ruling out a reunion this winter, reports Chelsea Janes of the Washington Post, though she characterizes the possibility as unlikely. Janes spoke to a team source who said, “I don’t see it, but anything is possible.” That’s far from a ringing endorsement for Desmond, but her colleague Thomas Boswell did lay out a scenario in which it could make sense: play Desmond in center field, move Trea Turner back to shortstop and deploy Danny Espinosa as a versatile utility infielder. Janes speculates that Desmond could realistically look to pursue something along the lines of Ben Zobrist’s four-year, $56MM pact, but that may be more than the Nationals care to invest, as she adds that the team “won’t stretch their means for his services.” Also, Janes writes that the Nats are looking to become a more contact-oriented team, and strikeouts remain an issue for Desmond despite his rebound campaign in Texas.
- John Harper of the New York Daily News opines that while retaining Yoenis Cespedes should clearly be the Mets’ top priority this offseason, a pursuit of Kenley Jansen should be a close second. Harper argues that the $17.2MM value of the qualifying offer the team may be comfortable extending to Neil Walker would be better allocated to Jansen, who can team with Jeurys Familia and Addison Reed to give skipper Terry Collins one of the league’s most imposing bullpen trios, thereby taking some pressure off of a rotation that was plagued by injuries in 2016. There’s certainly merit to the notion, and the Mets have been willing to part with a first-round pick in the past for lesser-regarded players. However, while Harper throws out a speculative number of four years and $54MM, I’ll respectfully take the over on both of those figures, as both Jansen and Aroldis Chapman are in firm position not simply to surpass Jonathan Papelbon’s four-year, $50MM record for a relief pitcher but to absolutely shatter it by a substantial amount.
Every team in baseball could use Jansen. Even if the Mets try to get him they will be outbid and it won’t be close.
This is correct. If the Yankees decide they want Jansen, the Mets will have no chance.
In the past, Jansen has made it clear that he does not want to share the closer responsibilities. Unless Mets overwhelm him with money (like Dbacks did with Greinke) I don’t see him going to the Mets.
He wouldn’t have to. Both the Yankees and the Cubs shifted two very very good Closers to the setup spot to accommodate Chapman. Sliding Familia and Reed down could save their arms as well take some pressure off the starters to go 7 innings per game.
Agreed. If Jansen were to sign with NY team, it would be the Yankees, not the Mets. And I think the Yankees are more interested in bringing Chapman back than signing Jansen and forfeit its 1st round pick. If there’s one team that will really try HARD to sign Jansen away from the Dodgers, it would be the Giants.
I agree; Giants significantly improve its BP while damaging Dodgers’.
I’ve always found this John Harper dude’s ideas to be strange and full of it. Not the Cespedes one of course, most sane Mets fan will acknowledge that the they absolutely need him to be a contender. But the fact that this guy thinks a club that’s shown in past that it has obvious financial limitations, and will likely spend most it’s remaining money to sign a big bat like Cespedes, should also dump crazy money on a guy that’s still just a reliever.
What’s sillier is that he is suggesting Jansen, who will cost a 1st round draft pick to the already depleted farm system, rather than Chapman and Melancon, who are just as good or better, and wont be costing a pick.
If the Mets really need a reliever it’s a 7th inning guy that’s a bridge to Reed and Familia. It was suppose to be Bastardo and they did spend money to get him, but he turned out be a total bust.. Robles filled that role nicely in the 1st half, but dropped off horribly after the trade deadline.
I don’t see Giants giving up a draft pick to Dodgers, Giants will target Melancon.
The Dodgers would get the same draft pick regardless of who signs Jansen. Why would the Giants let that dictate their interest?
(I don’t really see them landing him, but still …)
Because the Giants do want to surrender another draft pick, when they can possibly sign melancon for less without losing a pick! they lost their first pick last year with the samardjia signing.
Right, I’m just saying the fact that the Dodgers would stand to gain a pick won’t enter into that decisionmaking process. The Giants will determine their interest level, including weighing the loss of the pick, and decide how to proceed just as if Jansen played most recently for any other team.
Anyhow, from your more recent comment, it seems that perhaps you meant only that they shouldn’t punt a pick. I can understand that viewpoint. While I don’t think anything is absolute, it’s an important factor for them and other teams.
why in the blue hell would the mets commit that kind of money to a bullpen arm when they already have a solid tandem? He’s going to command double digit millions, put that towards offense! Jeez did that writer watch the mets this year? The back-end of the ‘Pen was NOT an issue!
If the Mets can sign ces and Jansen they r set. Think about it, Reed familia Jansen sounds an awful lot like what the yanks had last year, plus the Mets have a fantastic starting rotation (health issues aside hopefully). Puts much less stress on the fragile arms and if they go 6 innings the game is over. Baseball now is about shortening the game, 6 innings with the Mets staff is unstoppable to think about. Wouldn’t need much offense with that, so signing ces, and keeping Bruce (or trading him for yet another solid reliever) and signing Jansen are my thoughts the priority.
The Mets would toy with the notion of signing another closer because they are a contending team and Familia has blown several playoff games over the last two seasons. Look what the Royals did last year with Herrera / Davis / Holland.
If they re-sign Cespedes, they’ll be able to compete for at least a wild card if the starting pitching stays healthy. I also agree that this would mean less wear and tear on the young arms.
Bottom line: Familia cannot pitch in the big games. Jansen will be battle tested after this postseason. Now, if they can only sign one….well, you go with Cespedes. They have no offense otherwise.
Lol at Familia not being a big game pitcher. Talk about having selective amnesia about the LDS, LCS last year. 2 of Familia’s blown weren’t even his fault. So he basically has 2 playoff blown saves that were his doing, something even the great Mariano Rivera had.
Jansen hasn’t even pitched in the World Series yet, and still has a worse overall playoff record than Familia.
You want to say Familia’s overall season was disappointing for a guy that’s suppose to be a elite reliever? Fine, that’s fair. You want to say Jansen clearly had a superior season? Ok, also fair. But apart from that, let’s not go venturing into foolish territory.
2015 NLDS – 4 G, 5.1 IP, 16 Batters Faced, 3 K, 0.000 WHIP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB
2015 NLCS – 4 G, 4.1 IP, 17 Batters Faced, 3 K, 0.923 WHIP, 2 H, 0 R, 2 BB
2015 WS – 4 G, 5.0 IP, 18 Batters Faced, 3 K, 0.600 WHIP, 3 H, 2 R (1 ER), 0 BB
Familia was pretty fantastic in the playoffs last year. The Mets played 14 games (5 in LDS, 4 in LCS, 5 in WS) and Familia pitched in TWELVE of them, facing 51 batters, fanning 9, walking 2, throwing 14.1 IP, allowing 2 runs, 1 earned, allowing a baserunner every other innings.
His blown saves in the World Series were largely not his fault AT ALL. His Game 1 blown save is on him – he served up that pitch to Gordon, fair and square. However, his Game 4 one was not his fault – Tyler Clippard walked Zobrist and Cain, and then with 1 out, Familia got the double play but Murphy let it go under his glove and that scored the run. Yeah, he allowed a ground-ball single and line drive single after, but he didn’t put three of those baserunners on by his own fault – Clip put two and Murph botched one.
In Game 5, he literally inherited a runner on second, nobody out in a one run game, got an out that moved Hosmer to third and an out on the infield where they should’ve gotten Hosmer at the plate, but Duda threw it out.
You wanna blame the Wild Card game on him, fine. He left a meatball to Gillaspie in the zone. But this was his thirteenth playoff game and just the second he messed up fully himself.
I can’t see the Mets being the highest bidder on any of the top players. There are too many big market teams looking for closers like the Cubs, Giants, Dodgers, Nats, and Cards. Desmond will get his money and could be the next super utility player along with the Cubs Zobrist, Baez, and Bryant. These players give a manager a lot of flexibility.
Uh…the Mets in NY aren’t a big market team? With Granderson’s contract coming off the books in a year, I wouldn’t be surprised if they spend a bit this offseasson to take advantage of their young pitching core – whie they still have them. Cespedes should be the first prioroty, but his 25M is already on the books from this year, so adding another 15M for a year is potentially feasible. Jansen, however will most likely sign elsewhere.
Also need to consider the fact that they’re adding a lot of money from players hitting arbitration this year – based on TR predictions, abitration eligible players are due to make an additional $17.8 million from what they made this year. Plus, Syndergaard is going to be eligible after this season, and he won’t come cheap given his numbers.
Agreed. But with Granderson, Cabrera and Bruce coming off the books, plus Wright’s insurance coverage (assuming he doesn’t play), you’re looking at close to 50M . This year they drop Cespedes, Colon, Niese…which is another 45M.
With some of the kids getting close to being called up, the Mets should be in position to spend. Would be a disappointment if the didn’t…
Jansen shouldn’t even be a free agent, but there you go.
Besides, what exactly is making some people, especially around here, talk as if it’s a certainty Jansen is a bigger free agency piece over Melancon anyways? Jansen is 2 years younger, but Melancon has more experience relieving. His higher overall ERA can be contributed to pitching in the much harder AL for 4 years, unlike Jansen who has always pitched in the NL in one of the most pitcher friendly parks.. So is it simply the fact that Jansen has pitched more in a popular team like the Dodgers?
Given the fact that Jansen is the only one of the 3 top relievers that’s costing a 1st round pick, logically speaking, teams should only settle for him if they miss out on Chapman and Melancon.
We’ve been hearing about this “much harder” AL forever, but it isn’t really true. Remember how Huroki Kuroda was going to melt when he moved from the Dodgers to the Yankees? Remember how that didn’t happen? Could it be that Jansen it just better than Melancon?
Ha ha and your idea for that not being “really true” is to give one guy out of thousands that have played the game as an example? LOL. It couldn’t just be that Huroki Kuroda just elevated his game when he went to the Yankees right? Seems impossible that someone can do that…
I don’t know how anyone can seriously deny the AL is much harder for pitchers, aside from just not watching following both leagues or being a serious fanboy of some NL team. A betting man would guess the latter is the issue here.
But I’m sure pitchers just love facing the likes of David Ortiz and Edwin Encarnation everytime though the order in small ballparks over Madison Bumgarner and then Alejandro de Aza a inning of pinch hitting in pitcher’s havens…LOL.
Kuroda was just an example. The percentage difference between the leagues is in the low single digits. You could look it up. I did. That is how it gets seriously denied.
Percentage difference of what exactly? What exactly is this imaginary or completely misleading stat that tells us facing a DH, usually one of the best hitters in the team, in smaller ballparks no less, isn’t considerably harder than almost a free out nearly everytime through the lineup?
The recent ERA specifics don’t matter all that much. (MM’s is better over last four years, but both are outstanding.) Melancon’s past in the AL and Jansen’s pitching for a high-profile team don’t matter at all.
But it’s closer to a three-year age gap, and that’s a huge differentiating factor. Teams that might question giving four years to Melancon may consider doing five for Jansen. Plus, he’s got the elite K rate to go with the elite BB rate that both of these guys have. Advanced metrics like him better. And he has been nails his entire career, while Melancon has had some rough spots (though they are pretty far in the rearview at this point).
The QO is probably the only thing that pushes in Melancon’s favor. I don’t think it’s enough to put them in the same salary range. Jansen will earn a good bit more.
Given that Melancon would have a far superior record if not for his time in the AL, and that’s exactly where his rough sports you speak has happened, I’d say say it’s hardly a “don’t matter at all” issue.
Point is their age difference is still far from huge. No way you can say Jansen will pitch or be ineffective for 2-3 years earlier than Melancon. Besides, you are ignoring the fact that it can also be a reason teams might prefer him over Jansen. Melancon might be just fine with a 4 years deal, where as Jansen might want to push for a 5 or 6 years offer. Teams don’t like to give that long a commitment by choice.
Lastly, what I think you are ignoring the most is value of 1st round picks. They are usually the ones that turn into star young players for the franchise. Even if they are a bit slow to develop at first, they can serve as attractive trade baits. Giving up a pick for a Cespedes or Encarnacion is fine, but for a guy that’s going to average 60-65 innings maybe at a very expensive contract, teams will need to think about it some given that there are 2 guys other guys at the same level who won’t cost a pick. That’s exactly why teams should be looking at Jansen only after missing out on Chapman and Melancon.
I’m still in shock of how the Nationals managed to basically steal Turner away!! They completely made out like bandits at the time of the trade, and even moreso now!!
I’ve truly wanted the Braves to sign Ian Desmond this off-season, but I just can’t see it happening honestly…
I would love for the Braves to trade Markakis, sign Desmond, and use him as a utility starter.. Yes, the Braves have Mallex Smith to man CF, and they can move Inciarte over to RF, but Mallex hasn’t quite proven he is capable of handling the everyday duties and demands of a major league starter…
I think Mallex could give Desmond, Inciarte, and Kemp some needed rest throughput the year, and also be utilities later in games as a pinch runner, or as a defensive replacement..
And possibly Desmond could even play some 2B and 3B, until Albies comes up and to give either Garcia a rest day or Ruiz a day of rest..
Idk, how well he would do, but people said the samething about him switching to CF, so idk there’s that lol…
Desmond is a guy that fills multiple holes, while using one spot on a 25 man roster..The Braves definitely NEED him, and I want him lol…