Here are highlights from the latest from Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe:
- Ervin Santana of the Twins could soon become a sought-after trade target due to his talent, experience and affordability, one AL scout opines. Santana makes just $13.5MM this season and next, with a $14MM option that can vest under certain conditions. Jose Quintana attracted plenty of attention over the offseason, but Santana should emerge as a big name too if the Twins make him available — which they haven’t yet, according to Cafardo.
- Slugger Ryan Howard would like to continue playing, but has not yet received any opportunities, Cafardo writes. Howard did, of course, struggle through most of the past several seasons in Philadelphia, and he batted just .196 last year. He did hit 25 home runs in 362 plate appearances and bat .262/.324/.608 in the second half. It appears there aren’t any teams out there swayed by those numbers, however.
- Thanks to Allen Craig ($11MM) and Rusney Castillo ($10.5MM), the Red Sox’ affiliate in Pawtucket will have the largest Triple-A payroll ever. Neither are on the 40-man roster. Craig played sparingly for Pawtucket last year and hasn’t appeared in the big leagues since 2015; he’s in what should be the last year of the $31MM contract he signed with St. Louis prior to the 2013 campaign. The Red Sox will almost certainly pay him a $1M buyout on his 2018 option once the season is over. Castillo was outrighted last season and is still owed $46MM through 2020.
- Nationals manager Dusty Baker, whose two-year contract with the club expires after the 2017 season, says he would like to continue managing beyond that. (As of last week, there weren’t any pending extension talks between Baker and the Nats.) On an unrelated note, Baker also shares his take on whether a manager can tell whether his team will be good or bad at this point in the season. “There are too many variables like injuries and different things that happen in players’ lives,” he says. “One thing though, you know when you have a bad team. When you leave spring training you know when you have a bad team and you know when you have a good team. Just hard to predict how good sometimes.”
- Former star closer Jonathan Papelbon still hasn’t decided whether he’s going to keep playing, Cafardo writes. Papelbon didn’t sign this winter while dealing with a family matter.
Craig should have been tossed early last year. last 2 springs? Same old thing.. “great spring” swing is back”. Blah, blah.. He’s done for and wasting space, more than the collection of other retreads at Pawtucket since they have another old bat former only in Carlos Quentin who they should see if can help over the next cpl of months with regular play.
Not that I think Howard is worth much, but if you go back to the time when teams didn’t believe that shuttling 13 pitchers was such a good idea, there would be a few teams who would make a roster spot for a guy like him–a couple of hundred AB’s and maybe you catch lightening in a bottle. .Now, it just doesn’t make sense when you need a versatile bench.
Tossed? Where? How? To what gain?
Tossed. You know. He’s saying Craig’s “salad days” are over.
If Baker can’t get his team at the least to the NLCS he will be looking for a job.
Gonna be hard to even win the NL east with that bullpen
their pen isn’t bad
I agree, the Nats have a very weak bullpen with a closer that has zero experience. It’s gonna be hard to compete with a team like the Mets and their pitching.
oh so you are admitting that you are willfully ignorant?
Their bullpen isn’t weak. At all. And there have been plenty of valid closers who started with no experience at it. I’ll point you to edwin diaz and alex colome as recent examples.
They lost their best bullpen pitcher and the experience of Papelbon (he wasn’t that great anymore but held his own). They have no experience and will struggle this season.
Ummm every closer at some point had no experience at it. What those two showed is that you don’t need it to be immediately great at it. There are also plenty with closer stink that were only good for a season or two but keep getting the ball because of it like Rodney
Shawn Kelleys had at least two very good seasons in a row. Treinen looks to be the real deal. If glover and solis can step up, it’ll be a fine bullpen.
Have you seen the nats bullpen break down? Apparently not.
Here is a link to their depth chart: http://washington.nationals.mlb.com/team/depth_chart/?c_id=was
Look at their bullpen:
15.2% HR/F last year and 14.8% last year. Also averages less than 9 K/9 and more than 4 BB/9 last 2 years…..if that is your closer you’re in trouble. We will see how he does this year, but thats not good.
again, another guy averaging 13.8% HR/FB last year. Great K numbers and BB numbers
Glover: he did not have a great showing last year as a rookie
7 k/9, 3 BB/9 12.5% HR/FB and estimators weren’t friendly.
Blanton: http://www.fangraphs.com/statss.aspx?playerid=4849&position=P was worse than the numbers suggest, but good piece, not great or elite
Solis: http://www.fangraphs.com/statss.aspx?playerid=11457&position=P great lefty coming out of the pen
Perez: http://www.fangraphs.com/statss.aspx?playerid=1514&position=P pitching estimators were not friendly to him and strictly a lefty guy as righting smashed him to .269/.388/.403
Gott: not a lot of info on him- but he didn’t dominate triple A last year
Romero: http://www.fangraphs.com/statss.aspx?playerid=4001&position=P can strike out people, walks too many, pitching estimators not friendly. 13.7% HR/FB
The only real options they have out of the pen are Kelley and Solis. They have no depth in the pen looking at the pieces they have. Idk how Romero Perez and Glover have roster spots in this pen when they are trying to compete given:
Romero: 9.85 K/9, 5.52 BB/9, 13.7% HR/FB 5.91-4.79-4.66
Glover: 7.32 K/9, 3.20 BB/9, 12.5% HR/FB, 5.03-4.72-4.77
Perez: 10.35 K/9, 4.50 BB/9, 4 10% HR/FB 4.95-4.17-4,54
This is all based off last year, but their pen doesn’t look to be a strength of this team and could realistically cost them games.
“There are also plenty with closer stink that were only good for a season or two…”
Closer Stink — is that a new Sabermetric?
Honestly hope Papelbon retires. Much as he was a great closer in his prime, he’s kind of just a washed-up ball of rage and bad attitude at this point.
Papelbon should get together with Howard and the 2 could play catch and discuss how much the Phillies love having them gone.
Ohhhh that’s awesome !!!
ghost of harambe
Lol u just made my morning
Ervin Santana would be perfect for the O’s. He’s an experienced veteran who would be a lot better than Jimenez at the back end of the rotation.
Who would they give up for him?
They have plenty of young talent to acquire him. It’s not like he is a star pitcher, he wouldn’t even get the Twins a top 100 prospect in return.
whatever you say. Obvious O’s fan is obvious.
Good job pointing out I’m an O’s fan, what gave it away, was it me saying he would be a perfect fit for the O’s? Also, what did I say that wasn’t true? The Twins haven’t made him available yet so nobody knows their asking price. And every team has enough young talent to acquire him.
the O’s have no minor league talent. Other teams have at least some. He will likely go to the teams that have some.
The part that gave it away was your incredibly naive statement that, “They have plenty of young talent to acquire him.”
It’s funny that year after year they have no minor league talent yet 11 players on their 25 man roster came up through their farm system, including all but 1 or 2 of their bullpen pitchers and they have a top 3 bullpen in all of baseball. They don’t have the big name prospects like the Yankees or White Sox but they got them by selling their top players cause they were out of contention. The O’s haven’t been in that situation for 5 years because of their minor leaguers stepping up.
going to cost a lot more then a relief prospect to get him cause have of the twins top 20 prospects are power bullpen arms. just look at this off season the twins are not going to accept a lowball offer to just trade good player. they will ask for a lot and if they dont get it they are not scared to keep him.
Orioles have no talent?
Correction: They have some talent- sisco harvey sedlock- they just won’t part with it to acquire ervin santana and the $41 mill still owed to him till 2020.
That is a lot of mediocre prospects. Linking to their top 30 means nothing, literally every team has that lol
The link was to cite the few talent they have- primarily sisco, harvey, and sedlock. The Orioles system has some talent. Not a lot, but some.
I think they could definitely get him. He isnt worth a top 100.
good Lord not even a top 100 omg wrist comment of the day look what straily got Santana is better
do they any young pitching the twins would want?
Yeah they have a ton of young pitching, nothing close to MLB ready but they have enough to get him.
santana is probably a 2-2.5 win pitcher. He has guaranteed control for 2017 and 2018 for under market value and then 2 non guaranteed years of control. He’s gonna get a back end top 100 prospect or some very, very interesting lotto ticket people unless he falls apart.
There is no way they have the pieces, and even if they do, any other wannabe contender would easily beat their package
Why keep two players in your system if you don’t use them ? Just release them and pay the piper. Look Melvin upton a shocker but you shouldn’t waste a spot on a roster for guys who can’t produce.
Because neither Craig nor Castillo had 5 yrs MLB service time the Red Sox were able to option them off the 40 man roster which means their salaries do not count towards the luxury tax . If they release them all the $$$ becomes due and count towards the luxury tax so both must remain in the minors this year if the Sox want to reset the lux tax. Next yr. they will buy Craig out for 1MM. Castillo is a different case. He will have 3 yrs and 34 MM left for 2018,-2020. He has always been a very good defensive OF and hit well in winter ball as well as this spring. With Chris Young 7MM & Moreland 5.5 MM set to be FA’s and Sam Travis set to earn the minimum there is a chance Casstillo makes the 2018 team as a 4th OF or shows enough that they can trade him with some $$$ so there is benefit to keeping both in the minors this yr.
If they’re off the 40-man they’re hardly wasting a spot.
3 years for 41mil is well below the market price for a good number 3 pitcher. 30 starts with a sub 4 era is what santana gives you can you say that about anyone in the Os rotation? Gausman maybe last year was the only year he made 30 starts in 4 years
Not really.. Jason Hammel didnt get that
but Santana had better metrics and no arm issues
well 2 years for 27 mil with a option
“If Allen Craig got 500 ABs in the bigs he would be an MVP candidate” (Sarcasm peeps) ol boy was good when he was good. Smart man to get his money when he could.Red Sox are dumb for taking it on, and we (Red birds) got John Lackey out it. Joe Kelly could still make that deal work for the Sox tho.. I know he has struggled but still love his arm
They don’t even have a top 100 pitching prospect