Feb. 24th: The Twins have announced the signing.
Feb. 23rd: The Twins have agreed to a minor-league deal with infielder Erick Aybar, according to LaVelle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune. The contract includes a MLB invite. Aybar’s potential salary is $1.25MM and there are some plate appearance-based incentives, too, per Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN (Twitter link). The deal also includes an opt-out opportunity on March 27th.
Aybar signed on with the Padres last year in hopes of rebounding from a pair of tough seasons, but ended up struggling in San Diego. Over 370 plate appearances, Aybar slashed just .234/.300/.348 over 370 plate appearances and continued to post sub-par metrics at shortstop. The 34-year-old switch-hitter also missed time with a foot fracture.
Minnesota won’t be handing its regular shortstop job over to Aybar, of course, but it could allow him to compete for a bench spot. Ehire Adrianza currently seems like the favorite to function as a utility infielder, but Aybar will now join Gregorio Petit and Taylor Featherston as potential non-roster options in camp.
It has now been some time since Aybar was a quality regular, but he certainly was that and more earlier in his career with the Angels. In addition to being a quality defender, Aybar was a league-average hitter from 2009 through 2014.
He is not washed up. He just can’t hit NL pitching. Last year his stats were .275/.362/.431 in inter-league games.. In 2016 he hit .242/.293/.314 while with the Braves and after his trade to Detroit he hit .250/.341/.350. Which would have been worth over 2 WAR (right around career norm) if he held those numbers for an entire season. He has never been much of a hitter but an 89 OPS+ is very solid for a backup middle infielder and better than some starters.
I checked to see how he fared in inter-league games in 2011 (OPS+ 110 his best offensive season) and the same thing was happening. His stats against NL pitching that year were .250/.289/.431. I predict he will have a nice bounceback season and will prove he isn’t washed up yet.
You cant be washed up when you’re a never was.
He was one of the top shortstops in the league for like 5 years. What are you talking about?
Hey, He’s a switch hitter. 34, and only a minor league deal.
(Like to think positive)
Maybe “flipped for prospects”? 😉
I doubt he regains his stroke enough to even be flipped for anything of more than barely marginal value… but… something is better than nothing.
I don’t think it’s too bad to have a vet you can call up to fill in if needed. He’s past his prime but you know what you’ll get.
Can he pitch?
He did appear as a pitcher once or twice last year…
Erick walks into Aybar
It’s a great fantasy team name
Preller should have signed him rather than trading a prospect for Freddy Galvis…
Easy buddy galvis is a gold glove ss with 15-20 hr pop. Fall back
Who cares? Padres aren’t going to be contending in 2018 then Galvis is gone. All he is doing for the Padres in 2018 is hurting their draft position.
First, when do you feel the Padres should start trying to win? Second, why would the Padres be unable to resign him? Most teams are set at the position. Third, do you think Machado will even consider a team thats not trying to win?
I don’t think they will be unable to re-sign him but they would still be able to sign him if they never traded for him.
I don’t see any way Machado ever plays for the Padres.
Freddy Galvis is also 28, six years younger than Aybar.
But last year of Arb ($6.8M) before FA.
Why do people keep saying stuff like this? Of course Galvis is better than Aybar! That’s not the issue here. The issue is that the Padres aren’t contending this year so it’s more important that their stopgap shortstop is cheap (in terms of money and prospects) than good. Padres could have signed Aybar or Escobar for way less than $6.8m and kept Enyel de los Santos.
Maybe Freddy can be re-flipped for better prospects,
Better performance generally leads to better prospects, and I’m inclined to believe Freddy Galvis outperforms Aybar 2018, due to youth and potential.
Also, if the fit is ideal, what about player extension, you are so against? (From the player’s perspective)
Yes, because teams are just itching to give up good prospects for glove first shortstops on expiring contracts these days…
Trading for him wasn’t a prerequisite to signing him beyond 2018. Wouldn’t it be better to wait a year, sign him and keep DLS?
You’re underestimating how expensive tanking can be. When you’re out of contention by May, it can cost you attendance and TV ratings (jeopardizing subsequent TV contracts), not to mention a “losing” clubhouse culture and deterrent for future free agents/in-house extensions.
Cubs were able to tank their way to contention because they had a baked in loyal fan base. It’s not nearly as simple a proposition for most markets.
Yes because tanking for four years ensured that the Cubs and Astros would never win a championship, would not be able to get a good TV deal, would irreversibly drive away fans, would destroy the clubhouse culture forever and make it impossible to sign free agents or extend guys. Oh wait…
Galvis actually hits some. Hes not glove only.
I called him glove first. Not glove only.
More importantly, he comes with only one year of control. He will be a free agent before the Padres are contending. They could have just signed him next offseason and kept DLS.
The difference between a 2nd vs 7th overall pick is typically pretty slim. The difference between being out of contention by May vs July can be tens of millions of revenue dollars.
Didn’t hurt the Cubs or Astros. Won’t hurt the Padres.
Ask the Cubs how they feel about drafting 2nd as opposed to 7th.
And I don’t think Galvis keeps the Padres in the race two extra months.
Do you know the current status of their TV contract? If it’s up for renewal in the next 1-3 years, tanking this year can cost them massively on that front. Likewise their season ticket holder figures.
As I said before, Cubs have a baked in fan base that immunized them against many of the costs mosts clubs can incur from tanking.
The Padres’ TV contract runs into the 2030’s and trying to appease casual fans does not lead to making smart baseball decisions.
Fair weather fans are actually the majority of attendance for most markets. Look, I’m not arguing the SD-Galvis case one way or another because frankly I don’t know all the nuances (it may indeed be a regretavle move). My point is simply that Galvis may realistically cost them 1-2 spots in the draft but bring in $10M in revenues – because the equation is more complex than the “if you’re not a contender you should tank” philosophy implies.
Preller strikes me as savvy enough I assume he’s looking at a bigger picture than the highest possible draft pick, and his calculus pointed towards Galvis being a net positive.
Galvis is not going to be bringing in $10m in revenues. This isn’t Mike Trout or Kris Bryant we are talking about. No one is going to games to see Freddy Galvis. And in their article about each team’s move that they will regret the most from this offseason, Bleacher Report listed the Galvis trade for the Padres for the same reasons I mentioned: There were shortstops available in free agency that would have cost less money and no prospects
Fair enough. I’m arguing the general notion that “if you can’t make the playoffs you should tank” more than the specific circumstances around Galvis.
I see regular season record solely as a means of determining who makes the playoffs, who plays who in the playoffs, where the playoff games are played and what the draft order is.
With that logic, sure, it’s perfectly rational to tank if you’re not in the playoff hunt. But if you look at a season a bit more holistically as an organization, it’s also where you’re revenues are generated, a chance to develop players, and build a reputation that retains/attracts talent for future years.
There’s a scenario (hypothetically) where a slick fielding SS helps the fragile confidence of a young pitching staff, and while he costs you 1-2 spots in a draft order, he helps a rotation blossom – for instance.
If the Padres play competitive ball, with Galvis as their SS, it would only take an attendance increase of 500,000 at $20 a ticket to achieve the $10MM thru ticket sales only. If you include revenue from concessions, parking, apparel, etc…Its probable half that.
Lmao just because you pointed out two success stories doesn’t make it a zero risk proposition.
Winning will build that reputation, which is exactly what the Padres will do 2-3 years from now.
And what is going to happen to that young pitching staff’s confidence when Galvis leaves after one season?
Like I said, no one goes to games to see Freddy Galvis play.
Well the Padres already tried to win via the “trade all the prospects for immediate help” strategy and it didn’t work.
In 2015, they had 2.4M total attendance with a 74 win season. In 2017 they had 2.1M with a 71 win season. The couple of win difference (and more importantly, probably, the general public perception of a “competitive team” whether or not they’re legit contenders) clearly can add up to notable revenue numbers, with only a nominal draft talent impact.
Again, I’m not saying Galvis is clearly a good move for them, just that the equation is much more complex than it may appear at face value.
No one regards a 74-win team as a “competitive team.” And the higher 2015 attendance was probably due to Prellerpalooza but those numbers weren’t sustainable. The only way to see sustainable attendance gains is to build a sustainable contender, which is exactly what they are doing now. Trading for Galvis likely won’t compromise the rebuild, but it will hurt.
I would rather have Galvis which improves every pitcher on the staff always with the eye on being able to flip when guys start busting in from the minors. You can guarantee Richard, Mitchell, and Perdomo will appreciate the upgrade.
Soo I agree with your Rev money etc. But the difference between a 2 and a 7 pick is night and day, it’s not the player or the resulting mlb player from it, the money that is tied to a pick means more than the actual ability to take a player, allows a team to take over slot guys etc.
Mmhm and what will happen to that upgrade after the 2018 season is over?
There is actually a pretty big dropoff from the average WAR of the last 20 #2 picks to the last 20 #7 picks. The standard deviation is admittedly pretty high, but I’ll take those odds plus the greater signing bonus cash pool over a few meaningless wins in a lost season.
Personally, I agree with you. But the general public doesn’t see things that way, and we have to acknowledge that there’s other legitimate interests that have to be satisfied and may conflict with maxing out a draft pick (not the least of which is a GM trying to keep his job, owner’s desire to be profitable, developing surrounding talent, maintaining public appearances of trying to compete, etc etc etc).
Preller is signed for 5 more years, the Padres are already profitable, the surrounding talent can develop without Galvis and no one thinks the Padres are trying to compete in 2018.
That’s $12 million in ticket sales between those 2 seasons. One fans thought the team would compete and the other they thought would stink.
The Padres will suck in 2018 and then Galvis will leave
If he is only signed for this year what prevents the Padres from flipping Galvis at the deadline for a better prospect than they gave up.
Also the Padres young SP needs a dependable SS that can play good defense and thus help them build their confidence in the process. On a young team there are certain positions that need veteran presence and with having a young catcher that means having a veteran SS is important.
How do you jeopardize the tv contract by losing ? You have a signed contract for a very sing amount of years! That’s not going away. Plus what other choices in San Diego are there to spend the sports entertainment money on?
Certain amount of years ! Dang auto correct is whacked !
Lack of demand for glove-first rental shortstops
Then they should have signed Escobar. Or even Cozart.
are you high?
“Over 370 plate appearances, Aybar slashed just .234/.300/.348 over 370 plate appearances . . . “
Mill City Mavs
No reason to ever get worked up over a minor league invite to camp. Push some other guys and cut him loose if he can’t play. Why not? About a 2% chance he makes the roster. Bullpen crunch is closer of a race for the 7th spot than utility infielder. Also lights a fire under Kennys Vargas.. now or never.
No way he makes the team. He’s never been that good to start with. Way below average hitter. Complete opposite of Andrelton Simmons. Whose is a top 15 SS. Erick Aybar would be on the list of the best back up SS
Huh? He wont make the team…but hes on the list of best back up shortstops? You do realize they are looking for a backup SS.
They end up getting a SS in a blockbuster deal in July if they contend. Again. I think they win the AL central.
Aybar is most likely an option because the Twins know Escobar will be playing a lot of third this year and won’t be able to fill in around the infield the way he’s done previously.
Hide the chicken wings
He should do a lot better in the American League, this happens to a lot of guys, they make the move to the National league and just can’t hit like they did in the American League. He’s still got gas in the tank, good pickup by the Twins at a very reasonable price. His defense is impeccable.