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Geoff Baker covers the Mariners for The Seattle Times. He provides daily coverage of the team throughout spring training, and during the season.

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January 31, 2008 9:06 AM

Bedard's agent denies extension talks

Posted by Geoff Baker

Just when you thought this whole Erik Bedard trade saga couldn't get any goofier, we get an email this morning from Mark Pieper, agent for said pitcher. In it, he blasts away at the MLB.com story yesterday that suggested the reason for this entire trade delay was because the Orioles were negotiating with his client over a long-term contract extension.

Scratch that. The story, that is.

"The report that appeared yesterday regarding Erik Bedard on mlb.com is wholly inaccurate and contains nothing factual,'' Pieper wrote. "Quite honestly, that type of journalism is irresponsible and reckless."

Guess he didn't like the story. So, we're back to square one. Any ideas? Well, it's now 9:30 a.m. and Buster Olney of ESPN.com chimes in with another possible angle, posted just minutes ago. Here's a snippet:

"When Jones was quoted as saying the deal was completed, this created a rules question, sources say: If Jones went for his physical examination, would the Orioles then be beholden to accept him, even if the physical exam did not go well."

Uh, you wouldn't think so. That's the whole reason players take physicals before trades in the first place. There's more:

"The inherent risk for the Mariners is that if either Jones or Sherrill were to flunk their physicals in Baltimore, then the respective value of the players would be diminished within the industry."

As with any deal pending physicals, no? This story just gets more and more bizarre. I've got a few more things to say about it, too.


The first point is, if the Mariners gave even a second thought to all of this, don't you think they would have laid out specific comment guidelines for Jones to follow upon being told of the trade?

I mean, Jones was going to have to explain things to his Venezuelan teammates and the press down there. It's not like he was in Arizona and could be secretly spirited off to Baltimore for a physical before anyone became any the wiser. He was in the midst of a national championship in a baseball-crazed South American country, for crying out loud. Mariners GM Bill Bavasi, regardless of what some of you think of his trading acumen, is not a stupid man. He's been to Latin America many times. He knows how much media there is at these winter league events and that Jones vanishing in the middle of the finals would be quickly noticed.

But it obviously wasn't enough to worry him about what Jones might say. Some of you, a small handful, have been steadily writing in to chide us for reporting on the trade. But the fact is, an entire baseball team in Venezuela (made up of professional players who talk to the media all the time) was told about what was going on 24 hours before Jones was to fly out to Baltimore last Monday. Jones gave interviews about the trade to reporters in Venezuela. One of them, from ESPN Deportes -- the network's Spanish language arm -- had his interview posted worldwide within hours. This news was going to get out, whether Jones said anything, or the Times was the first to publish it, or the South Americans were.

Jones leaving the team was going to be made public. Questions were going to be asked in many countries.

If Bavasi was even remotely concerned this would hold-up the deal in any way, logic dictates he would have told Jones in advance not to say anything.

But he didn't. Apparently, he wasn't all that concerned. Remember, he told Jones about the trade on Saturday. The flight to Baltimore was on Monday and the physical, because of the amount of travel Jones had to do, wasn't going to be until Tuesday morning. Could anyone seriously have expected this to be kept a secret for nearly three days? Of course not. But Bavasi, apparently, wasn't too concerned. He's been a GM for a decade and knows how these things normally go.

What to conclude? They did not go normally this time. Why is that? My best guess still leads us back to Orioles owner Peter Angelos. He's a litigator by trade. If anyone was going to raise an issue about the legality of a deal pending physicals, it would be him. Now, some of you might consider this a shrewd move by a trained lawyer. Others might say that Angelos -- very upset at the leak the night the Jones interview came out -- is merely nitpicking and doing the kind of thing folks have long accused him of.

All I can say is:

-- The Mariners thought they had a deal on the weekend.

-- Nobody on Seattle's side was worried enough about the possibility of a leak, despite the three-day lag time before the actual physical, a hefty media presence in Venezuela and an entire baseball team that would be well aware of why Jones was leaving, to warn the player himself that talking might mess things up.

So, who is really to blame for this major delay? Draw your own conclusions.

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Posted by DorneyDave

9:21 AM, Jan 31, 2008

I'm confused.

Posted by ~Mariner4life~

9:21 AM, Jan 31, 2008

Geoff~ Touch on this please...

espn.com is reporting this now a rules issue:
=============================================
"When Jones was quoted as saying the deal was completed, this created a rules question, sources say: If the Jones went for his physical examination, would the Orioles then be beholden to accept him, even if the physical exam did not go well.

The Orioles have asked the Mariners for written language that Seattle will submit Jones and Sherrill for a physical examination by the Orioles -- and if they pass physicals, then and only then will Baltimore be obligated to finish the trade. The inherent risk for the Mariners is that if either Jones or Sherrill were to flunk their physicals in Baltimore, then the respective value of the players would be diminished within the industry."

Posted by a baltimore perspective

9:25 AM, Jan 31, 2008

redux:

bedard is an underrated lights-out stud who is cheap and under contract. seattle has NO leverage. none. maybe, just maybe, angelos has left no impression on this “delay” save for his tacit support of mcphail and mcphails hardass ways -- dude has stuck to his guns ever since the winter meetings, rebuffing the same fleecing minnesota inexplicably agreed to. maybe, just maybe, bavasi gave jones too much info too soon, before a hand was shook -- such a scenario would certainly rankle a hardass. if so, why would mcphail not bluff re other interest post-santana, not hold out for morrow & more (ala a haren deal)? worst case: the os have arguably the best starter in the al through 09. mcphail has waited this long, im sure hed be ok with letting seattle walk. i mean george sherrill? camon.

re the suns report that no extension has been discussed with bedards agent:

theory holds -- febrile speculation swirls whilst mcphail sits stone silent at the table waiting for seattle to go all in.

again, worst case, os rebuild with more pieces late july or next winter. well. unless bedards arm falls off.

Posted by usesomelogic

9:25 AM, Jan 31, 2008

Sounds like a fancy way of saying the deal is done pending physicals.

Posted by ajdaddy

9:27 AM, Jan 31, 2008

wow. Sounds like the Beltway spin to me. Perhaps Angelos and his crew are feeding stories to people so that it looks like Bedard wouldn't re-sign, so we had to trade him? As the late Crocodile Hunter would say, "Shoor is some muurkey watah' (apologies for the attempted phonetic Aussie accent)

Posted by usesomelogic

9:27 AM, Jan 31, 2008

Hopefully the M's are putting the same language into getting a physical on Bedard. If I were the O's I'd be more worried about Bedard failing then Jones or Sherril.

Posted by Dude34

9:29 AM, Jan 31, 2008

Tell Mr. Pieper to start working on a contract extension ... with the Mariners! I'm only half-serious, because that seems unethical, but someone needs to force Mr. Angelos' hand. If Bedard just came out and said "I'm not signing with Baltimore," they'd have to move him. Right?

This is by far the best deal the O's are going to get. Hurry up already.

Posted by robsieg79

9:29 AM, Jan 31, 2008

By Buster Olney
ESPN The Magazine
(Archive)

The Seattle Mariners and Baltimore Orioles may finally sort through a rules issue this afternoon, taking the next step forward to completing their long-discussed deal involving left-handed pitcher Erik Bedard.

The Mariners and the Orioles came close to completing the deal last weekend: Bedard for center fielder Adam Jones, pitchers George Sherrill, Chris Tillman and Tony Butler, as well as another player. The conversations progressed to the point that the Mariners informed two players central in the deal -- Jones and Sherrill -- that they needed to go to Baltimore for physical examinations

When Jones was quoted as saying the deal was completed, this created a rules question, sources say: If the Jones went for his physical examination, would the Orioles then be beholden to accept him, even if the physical exam did not go well.

The Orioles have asked the Mariners for written language that Seattle will submit Jones and Sherrill for a physical examination by the Orioles -- and if they pass physicals, then and only then will Baltimore be obligated to finish the trade. The inherent risk for the Mariners is that if either Jones or Sherrill were to flunk their physicals in Baltimore, then the respective value of the players would be diminished within the industry.

Posted by bsstecks

9:34 AM, Jan 31, 2008

At this point I don't care what rumors run where about whoever, but if it turns out to massive use of the Media by the O's in an attempt to drive up the price for Bedard and Bavasi caves, I'll be pissed.

Put Jones, Tillman, Butler and Sherril on the table, tell them to take it or leave it and walk away, the O's won't get a better offer than that from anyone else and they darn well know it.

Posted by a baltimore perspective

9:34 AM, Jan 31, 2008

bedard has made it clear he doesnt want to rebuild. every oriole fan knows hes out the door. in 09! theres no dang rush. jones may be a beast, but there are good deals everywhere -- jay bruce, etc. now & later. well. unless bedards arm falls off.

Posted by flarkenberry

9:52 AM, Jan 31, 2008

Jones didn't say he was traded pending a physical. He said he was traded AND that he was going to take a physical. Two different things. Giving Jones a physical without having language specifying that the deal was pending that physical could have been seen by a judge or arbitrator as tacit acceptance that the general knowledge created by his remarks was, in fact, accurate. "Why didn't you specify that the deal was pending his physical, if that is what you meant?" would be a legitimate question, and a tough one to answer. If he had flunked the physical and the deal had gone through anyway, the Orioles would look 10 times dumber than the Mariners do right now.

Posted by Lance

9:52 AM, Jan 31, 2008

What? How come no one is discussing a physical for Bedard? Now, those are x-rays I'd like to see. How would the M's know they aren't trading for damaged goods?

The guy didn't pitch all September. They say it was a pulled quad, or whatever.

Maybe that's just what they want everybody to think!

Posted by Donovan

10:05 AM, Jan 31, 2008

Wouldn't it be funny if this keystone cops routine was brought on, not by the inimitable Mr. Angelos, but by Bud Selig (one of the few living MLB owners loathsome enough to be in Asbestos Pete's league)? Maybe everybody went into stonewall mode because MLB thought Adam's interview violated rules and announced an internal investigation. That's the only way this could get more absurd.

In any case, I don't see how anything Jones said or didn't say makes any difference. He wasn't a principal party in any trade anyway. He's just the merchandise. A trade is not consummated by a player giving an interview, it's a legal process involving a lot of paperwork and overpaid lawyers. Trades always stipulate satisfactory completion of a physical, just like house sales always stipulate completion of an inspection. If this report is true, it's truly bizarre.

Posted by Alaskan

10:09 AM, Jan 31, 2008

flarkenberry,
1. Good name
2. Well, Jones is probably pretty confident about passing a physical, right? So even if the trade was dependent, he would take that as a done deal.

Posted by roguerambler

10:13 AM, Jan 31, 2008

7 yrs for $100 million extension for bedard

Im not saying he is not worth it and 7 years is very long but accourding to the Baltimore Sun, that is what he is looking for.

http://weblogs.baltimoresun.com/sports/roch/blog/2008/01/pieper_fires_back.html

Geoff, whats the take on 7 years?

Posted by a baltimore perspective

10:17 AM, Jan 31, 2008

"dude"

Posted by mike

10:17 AM, Jan 31, 2008

Bavasi needs to call Angelos' bluff, take something OFF the table, and walk away if he says no. This is better than the best deal out there, why couldn't we have traded for Santana with this trade (other than Santana did no want to come to Seattle). Bedard's value shrinks to the O's every day, and then need to move on it while they can still get a good deal, because I don't see anyone in the future wanting to deal with this bs.

Posted by ChrisP

10:19 AM, Jan 31, 2008

I say Bavasi starts talking to the Bucs about Snell and creates a little buzz, heck at the least he can line up a solid Plan B. For all of the bashing the M's ownership has taken over the last few years, at least they don't cut their GM off at the nutz and sabotage their franchise year in and year out like that moron Angelos.

Posted by twobits82

10:20 AM, Jan 31, 2008

7 years is a LONG time to commit to a pitcher.

That said, IF (and it's a BIG if) Bedard can pitch even close to the way he has pitched the last season and a half $14 million a year would be a pretty good value. I would assume if that is the number his agent comes out with in public, through negotiation you could shave a million or two a year off of that number.

Geoff, maybe you can explain the insurance options a club has when signing a player to that kind of deal.

Posted by Donovan

10:20 AM, Jan 31, 2008

Any team that does a 7 yr. contract on any player, especially a pitcher, is stupid. I read that contract demand as a way of saying "we have no interest in signing with you" without sounding like they are dissing the whole city. Angelos is a bastard, but he's a greedy bastard, and he's not that stupid. He did actually earn his millions. There won't be any deal, not for 7 years anyway.

Hey B.P. - You used the phrase "febrile speculation swirls" in the last thread. Is that copyrighted, or can anybody use it?

Posted by bsstecks

10:21 AM, Jan 31, 2008

lets play this game some more:

I heard Bedard wants a private jet and he'll sign an extension, but only if only has to pitch on alternate Thursdays and never on Tuesday nights (he doesn't want to miss American Idol, he's a huge Simon fan).

Jones is asking for his own Bat line and Gap commercial, when we first heard gap we were confused, but it turns out theres a rather large market for it in Baltimore.

Macphail said he's talking to the Mets about trading Bedard and Payton for Santana now, that was part of his plan the whole time...obviously it works out well for the Mets cuz they get Payton to replace Beltran in CF.

Bavasi came out the earlier and declared that Seattle is pulling out of the Bedard race and going after two other aces: Randy Johnson and Jamie Moyer. Bavasi thinks that Felix is in need of a more veteran presence. The offer currently standing appears to be Morrow, Jones, Wlad, Clement and Triunfel, for Mark Reynolds and Randy Johnson...many thought that was a high price to pay, but Bavasi said he needed to free up AAA roster space for new prospects he's going to draft in next seasons Rule 5 Draft.

Thats all I have for now, I'll keep you updated.

Posted by flyaway24

10:28 AM, Jan 31, 2008

Wow, Geoff is right, this thing does just get crazier and crazier. I wake up everyday (hey, i'm only 24, I can do stuff like this), and hop on the Times' website to see what's new with this.

I for one am willing to mortgage the next 5 years for a year or two at least of a long run into October. We, as M's fans, have waited long enough!! Unless you're the Yankees/Red Sox of the past decade, do many teams ever make a playoff appearance EVERY year anyway? I mean, yes, there's the ones who have their run, the Braves, Angels, and even the Orioles of the late 90's. Really though, what are we building toward?? A window of at least a year or two that we can make World Series push, right? Realistically, I think that's all a fan can ask for. So if that's the realistic case, why not just take that shot now instead of 5 years from now? Do you all really think that if we hold onto Adam Jones and a few of these others that they're all going to develop into the key centerpieces that will ultimately run off a stretch of division titles like Atlanta did? Probably not! Even Atlanta, as much of a mainstay as they were, have one title to show for it. Let's try and get ours now.

Posted by a baltimore perspective

10:29 AM, Jan 31, 2008

donovan.

febrile speculation swirls is an alternate name for an electro-jug band im considering starting. cept i dont know how to play a jug. no TM/(C) as of yet. pending physical, natch.

Posted by thatgirl

10:30 AM, Jan 31, 2008

Wow, what a roller coaster waiting on this trade (?) or no trade (?). It's confusing, exasperating, agonizing and mentally exhausting all at the same time. But it’s also an invigorating experience and what makes MLB so much fun to follow. Heck, giving birth seems easier right now than waiting on this cat and mouse game with no apparent end point…

Will somebody please hurry up already and make a decision!!

Posted by The Besmircher

10:31 AM, Jan 31, 2008

The Bersmircher says:

What a bunch of fools.
Wanna trade Jones and his five tools,
ya gotta deal with the ghouls.
Bavasi drools,
Angelo, stubborn as a mule,
schools him on the cruel rules
Finding pleasure in this gruel,
is like tryin' to get drunk on O'Douls.

Posted by ajdaddy

10:40 AM, Jan 31, 2008

We have a deal, right?
Well, Peter's a busy man
Throw in Ichiro!

Posted by Donovan

10:41 AM, Jan 31, 2008

B.P. - What an amazing coincidence. My own electro-jug band, "The Dangling Participles" is in need of a new lead. Not being able to play is definitely a plus. Please send demo tape. If we like it, we'll waive the physical.

It's sad when the most astute post of the day is by The Besmircher, but that's where we are. My God, is opening day really still two months away? Another day of this and I'm going to be forced to work at my actual job.

Posted by scottM

10:48 AM, Jan 31, 2008

The Besmircher says that Donovan better watch out. It's tough to pass even a jugband physical when part of your ciples are left dangling.

Posted by Tallahassee-Mariner's Fan

10:51 AM, Jan 31, 2008

Still keeping the fingers crossed for the trade (any minute now), but is it just me or did the wind sort of get taken out of our sails with the false alarm over the weekend (and the BS that has ensued) followed by the announcement of the far sweeter deal the Mets got for the superior Santana. This trade is still in the best interests of the Mariners, but I think I can speak for all of us that it’s a little bitter-sweet at this point.

Posted by The Besmircher

10:52 AM, Jan 31, 2008

Ahh crapola, I blew my cover! :=0

Posted by Bill

11:07 AM, Jan 31, 2008

Are we there yet?

Posted by DarthAngelos

11:09 AM, Jan 31, 2008

Get this, the Baltimore Sun just ran an article about this whole thing not being Angelos fault...by the way, not to show off a geek side of me, but doesn't Pete Angelos look an awful lot like the Emperor from Star Wars?

Darth Angelos, Evil Galactic Emperor

Posted by Donovan

11:11 AM, Jan 31, 2008

Last post, then I'm going to stop watching this pot.

I posted on this yesterday, but it comes coming up here. In spite of the fact the people like to say it, trades of players under contract do not "establish markets" for other players in the same way that free agent signings do. That's because you are bidding on a contract, not a player, and contract terms are all different.

You can't compare the Santana deal directly with the hypothetical Bedard deal. Bedard's contract is worth more than Santana's, because it runs two more years, and he is cheap, cheap, cheap, at less than 10 million per. The Mets paid less, because Santana's demands eliminated the possibility of a bidding war, and because they were forced to renegotiate his contract immediately. They didn't get a contract at all. All they got were exclusive negotiation rights to him, and they will have to pay him $100 million or so over 5 yrs to close the deal. His "trade" was more like bidding for rights on a posted Japanese player, since he will never play for NY under his current contract. The Twins got something for surrendering their final year of rights, but not as much as they wanted. That's what you risk when you let a no trade rights guy play into his walk year. That's why most teams don't do that.

You may believe that the M's are overpaying for Bedard, and you may even be right, but I don't think the terms of the Santana deal are much justification for that view.

Posted by Dblog

11:37 AM, Jan 31, 2008

This deal has become a bad joke, time to move on!

Posted by OlyOle

11:42 AM, Jan 31, 2008

especially with the Santana deal in context, these Bedard dealings make the O's and the M's look really amateurish.

Agree on players, make them turn and cough, you're happy or not happy, you trade or don't trade. Pretty simple. Everyone else seems to have it figured out.

http://marinerlog.blogspot.com/

Posted by MONTE

11:55 AM, Jan 31, 2008

Teaching media suaveness is job ONE when dealing with young professional athletes, and this actually speaks to the M’s organization itself. AND sadly we see this lack of organization on the field as well.

"Draw your own conclusions."

Meh- I for one am not surprised – it's really par for the course.

Posted by BrianL

12:07 PM, Jan 31, 2008

Ken Rosenthal seems to be in agreement with the USSM crowd.

http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/story/7742932/Landing-Bedard-not-a-cure-all-for-Mariners

Posted by Chris from Bothell

12:11 PM, Jan 31, 2008

Donovan - AHA. Thank you. Now I get it. Explaining why Santana doesn't set the market, in those terms, makes sense. Contract v. person is the important distinction. I agree with you.

Posted by OlyOle

12:15 PM, Jan 31, 2008

well, what deal IS a cure-all for teams? Thanks for shining a light on the already illuminated, Kenny.

I tend to disagree with Rosenthal that the Angels will have a more imposing starting rotation though. I think with Bedard, the M's can run with Lackey, et. al.

www.marinerlog.com

Posted by Adam

12:16 PM, Jan 31, 2008

Keith Law over at ESPN (former Blue Jays exec.) has his top-100 prospect list out. Has Triunfel at #18 (as a 17 year-old).

And just for you, Resin - he said in his chat that Adam Jones would be a top-10 prospect had he qualified - having missed out with 9 ABs too many.

http://proxy.espn.go.com/chat/chatESPN?event_id=19060

BrianL - why are anti-trade folks the "USSM crowd?" I was against the trade before USSM came out and said it was. You can give some of some credit...

Posted by Jamie Roth

12:20 PM, Jan 31, 2008

Obviously it's Angelos. Who in their right mind would would deal with or work for the Orioles with this mess in Place. I think the birds should change their colors to Black and Silver.

Posted by PayClayBennett

12:21 PM, Jan 31, 2008

Geoff - until it's cashed and cleared - the check is in the mail. The trade was not complete, therefore anyone who said it was (Jones, Sea Times, ESPN - whoever) was wrong and pre-jacked. I think the Pats are going to win the Super Bowl as do 64% of poll voters, but no one is giving them the trophy yet. The fact is, all of the media is jonesing (no pun intended) to break this trade and they went early, regardless of what Jones said or how he said it. Angelos will let us know when and if there is a deal - until then, anything is speculation.

Posted by MONTE

12:33 PM, Jan 31, 2008

The "USSM Crowd"

Don't you mean two bloggers and hundreds of obsequious toads that jump on their command.

Posted by PayClayBennett

12:33 PM, Jan 31, 2008

Bummer - Luis Gonzalez signed with the Marlins today too - looks like if we get Bedard, we will be giving Brad Wilkerson daily ABs and setting up Putz from the left side with Rhodes....sorry, but BARF!!! Give me Sherrill and Jones and take your chances on a 5th starter - this trade is stupid and allows Bill Bavasi to go buy some more band aids...let's see - he has spent years over-paying for the "best" available free agents and last year, during the best stretch of Mariner baseball since he's been here - his manager quits on him. Now, in his desperation, he is going to clean out what little farm there is to get a guy who will pitch only 28 times (Bedard will not make it a full season, nor has he at this point in his career) - will Bedard for 5 players translate to the 7 more wins that would have been required to knock out the Angels? No. Better play out of their existing millionaires could accomplish that, while continuing to develop inexpensive, home grown talent. If I was in Bill's shoes, I would not make this deal. He has a better chance of keeping his job by not making this deal.

Posted by OlyOle

12:36 PM, Jan 31, 2008

was just enjoying reading the article on MLB.com from back in June when the O's introduced McPhail to the press as their new GM. At the time he had this to say:

"I'm absolutely responsible for baseball operations," MacPhail said in a press conference. "I like one voice. I like simplicity. I'm looking for all the help I can get, but at the end of the day, I have to believe that it's the right thing. I have to say, 'This is the best thing for the Baltimore Orioles.'"

One voice. Simplicity. Huh.


http://marinerlog.blogspot.com/

Posted by Zach C

12:39 PM, Jan 31, 2008

Good news- Luis Gonzolas cannot be a mariner next year!

Posted by gonsord

12:39 PM, Jan 31, 2008

What I don't understand is all of the talk about Angelos and/or MacPhail being angry about the leak. Why would they care? Why is it even considered a leak. A deal was obviously agreed to. Somebody (Jones) told the media. This almost always results in the teams saying something like - "no comment" or "we have a deal pending the physicals", or "we're still talking". Why would this common set of events have infuriated anyone on the Orioles side?

Posted by Adam

12:40 PM, Jan 31, 2008

Rosenthal's right. He makes some great points.

Our OF defense will be horrible. Adding Wilkerson doesn't help our free-swinging ways. As Rosenthal noted, no team saw fewer pitches per AB last year. Our bullpen, the strength of the team, would be worse. So likely would our offense; Wilkerson is a step down from Guillen, and one has to expect Vidro to drop - he was lucky last year.

All this, added to the moves the Angels made, and the improvements/health they can expect, means we will not be as good.


Lackey > Bedard (yes, I said it. Lackey's more durable and has a longer track record)

Escobar > Felix (potential-wise, Felix is the best arm in baseball but he's not there yet)

Weaver > Silva (just barely)

Garland = Batista

Saunders > Washburn (Wash lucky to be a #5 now)

Anahiem bullpen

Kotchman > Sexson
Kendrick >>>> Lopez
Aybar/Izturis Figgins Willits Hunter Vlad >>>>>> Wilkerson or Wlad

And with Mathis, Aybar/Izturis, and Matthews, the Angels have a far superior bench. And their manager runs circles around ours.


Even with Bedard, we don't beat the Angels.

Posted by jln0114

12:42 PM, Jan 31, 2008

What about Bedard? Maybe he's had an injury. Maybe he's the one who can't pass a physical. Maybe that's what Angelos and Bedard talked about. Wouldn't be too good for the Orioles if their big pitcher turned out to be worthless.

Posted by Harry

12:45 PM, Jan 31, 2008

I hope the deal falls through. Let's build the team through the farm system.

Posted by Adam

12:47 PM, Jan 31, 2008

Woah - not sure what happend to my post. Maybe some HTML stuff.


Any way, Betancourt is just a bit better than Izturis, Beltre is better than Figgins, Raul only beats Willits or Matthews by a tiny bit because he's so horrible with the glove, and Ichiro beats Hunter. Wlad kills Wilkerson.

Posted by bsstecks

12:47 PM, Jan 31, 2008

Adam, what happened to Ichiro, Raul, Beltre, Joh, YuBet in your comparisons?

Anahaheim BP? Are you kidding me? did you not watch an aging Shields get blown up every other night last year? K-Rod is nails, and he's all BEATABLE with the long ball.

Putz, Morrow, Green, RRS, Lowe = Solid BP. Putz is one of, if not the best closer in the league. Lowe and Green have come along nicely, and Morrow can play that set up role if it's his to own.

You can't just pick the best Angels and compare them to the worst Mariners, thats not how it works. I agree the Angels are better, but Bedard makes a lot of our other parts of the team better by saving the BP from extra work, taking hoRam out of the rotation, limiting Defense chances via the strikeout, and overall just being a dominate pitcher.

Posted by Adam

12:50 PM, Jan 31, 2008

I rated the Mariner bullpen as a bit better than the Anahiem bullpen.


That got lost, too.


I would note that the Angels' BP had a lower OPS against in 2007, pitching in a more friendly hitters park. But Putz is too awesome to overlook.

Posted by Adam

12:52 PM, Jan 31, 2008

You can't just pick the best Angels and
compare them to the worst Mariners

Not sure what you are talking about. I used the starters for both sides.

Posted by Mike

12:56 PM, Jan 31, 2008

So now Ken Rosenthal is an obsequious toad?

Posted by bsstecks

12:56 PM, Jan 31, 2008

It referred to your original post that left out all of the other comparisons...you've covered that.

Posted by OlyOle

1:00 PM, Jan 31, 2008

maybe instead of toad, Rosenthal is just a deferential lemming?

http://marinerlog.blogspot.com/

Posted by ET

1:00 PM, Jan 31, 2008

Let's check the Baseball Writer Accuracy Scorecard, shall we? Because it shows we're getting 5-tool quality from the Seattle Times, and these mouth-breathers here trying to throw Geoff under the bus might might want to shush.

1. Geoff breaks the story on-line. Audiotapes for all to hear back up every word. Orioles statements look ridiculous.

Folks, in the business, (and I'm in the business, but not sports), we're asked ALL THE TIME to write what we call "The Knock Down Story." Somebody breaks the news, our organization looks lazy, and we're told to sharpen the knives and "knock that story down." In the Orioles' case, since they look like they couldn't operate a T-ball team, they deliberately feed disinformation to make them look less dumb. So then:

2. Baltimore scribes invent rumors that Jones has "Albert Belle hip-itis" or whatever. Baltimore scribes publish apparently team-fed rumors that other teams are real bidders for Bedard. Times' report on whole affair still looks like the smart stuff.

3. MLB.com - the P-I's former Jim Street, fer crying out loud - floats a balloon about contract extension talks. Bedard's agent aims shotgun at said ballon and doesn't miss. Again, Baker's original reporting is holding up very nicely.

4. ESPN Baseball God/Guru Buster O. takes a stab and has us all scratching our heads. Really? Comments to a foreign journalist constitute legally binding contracts back in the United States? Interesting.

Guys, Mr. Baker here stirred up the hornets and the ass-covering has been HILARIOUS. Time is going to tell which reporters got the facts, didn't overplay the facts and understood the situation. I think you know that's going to vindicate our favorite scribe.

I'm torn on the move itself, but at the end of the day, all I know is this. NOT doing the trade guarantees we will NOT win. DOING the trade gives the POSSIBILITY -- however remote -- of winning big. Ichiro is aging, and our window of serious contention is shutting. Let's do this. If we fail, we sleep knowing we tried and turn our heads toward rebuilding. But if it all falls into place... good times.

Posted by Pete

1:18 PM, Jan 31, 2008

ET -

I love your outlining of the story, and agree with your thought that Geoff has done a fantastic job.

Regarding the actual deal, the chance that "it all falls into place" is so, so slim. You are counting on way to much to magically line-up. Why not continue to build now, with the core of excellent young talent. Stripping the best hitter away now will have a huge domino effect.

Felix and Jones are the future of this team. The Mariners haven't developed players this good in over a decade.

The two-year Bedard window is not worth the cost. It just isn't.

Posted by Lance

1:21 PM, Jan 31, 2008

Well, I'm just enjoying my lunch, still hoping against hope.

I do believe Angelos is still trying to negotiate a deal to get Bedard to stay. The deal, even the physicals, get held up until it occurs, or he gives up.

Frankly, if Bedard is about the money, and I think in the end he is, a doable deal would have him sign for six years (for crying out loud, he's only had one real good year. And it was more about a great second-half, not an entire year, until the injury that shut him down).

If Zito got 7-yrs/$18 per year then Bedard should accept 6 yrs/$16 per year. Each side should get an "out" option at the halfway point of the deal, after three years.

I still think the O's are going to end up signing him, but like I said, I'm probably still just hoping against hope.

Posted by gonsord

1:28 PM, Jan 31, 2008

MONTE: couldn't agree more about USS Mariner.

Posted by Lance

1:54 PM, Jan 31, 2008

Bavasi should just forget about Bedard. Look elsewhere.

Pittsburgh wants Jeff Clement in any deal for Ian Snell. Let them have him! I love Clement's left-handed power bat, but he'll only be mediocre at catcher, if not a down right liability. And, catcher is one position you don't want to skimp on defensively.

And, the Mariners have other good catchers who'll play in the big leagues and do well (Johnson and Moore).

Clement would be a liability in the outfield at Safeco. 1B is his only true future position with this team. But Richie and Raul would need to be moved first for an opening to develop.

Snell would slot at #2, behind Felix. Felix is still your ace, as he should be. Followed by Silva/Batista/Washburn (with some kids not far behind).

Clement + Tillman for Snell. That's what really should be going down.

Posted by Chip

2:05 PM, Jan 31, 2008

Geoff, MLB's Mobile Service is reporting that the Brad Wilkerson deal is now official, so is it safe to say that the last hurdle has been cleared and the trade is done?

Posted by Pete

2:08 PM, Jan 31, 2008

gonsord -

I've been reading USSM since 2003. I bristle at the thought that I don't have a mind of my own.

I agree with much of what they write, but there are times that I think their way of thinking isn't quite fluid enough.

Before I ever found USSM, I had developed my own sense about baseball and statistics. When I found the site, I was drawn to it immediately.

They present things in such a logical, well-reasoned way, that it resonates with how I like to think through things.

None that makes me a toad.

I think it's less about puppets and disciples as it is like-minded people... at least from my perspective. My way of thinking is drawn to their way of thinking.

Posted by Resin isn't Cheating

2:29 PM, Jan 31, 2008

Adam-Keith Law is an analyst I do have a lot of respect for. With that cushy ESPN job I wonder if he
had time to watch Adam Jones play in recent years. Anyways, we can all agree this is a complete fiasco. I really hate giving up Tony Butler and Tillman in this deal. Pitchers come with such higher risk than a positional player. With the Wilkerson signing I can't possibly fathom the deal not going through now. Can you imagine how hilarious it would be if the trade doesn't go through and we are stuck with Wilkerson. LOL!

Posted by vertigoman

2:30 PM, Jan 31, 2008

Hey Geoff,
How long does it take to get an injury update on the newest M Wilkerson anyways? He played in Montreal, don't you guys all know each other?:-)
Obviously, he passed some kind of physical but what's your take on that shoulder injury that supposedly usurped his power in 2006 and his groin injury(?) that stole his range in 07?

Posted by Adam

2:30 PM, Jan 31, 2008

We just signed Wilkerson. Awesome. Not only does this mean the Bedard trade is close, but Richie has competition in the "How in the Hell Does He Strike Out So Much" Competition.


Lotsa people are going to be disappointed this year...

Posted by Resin isn't Cheating

2:33 PM, Jan 31, 2008

Pete-when the host of that site announces he will automaticly ban bloggers that believe "Randy Johnson quit on the Mariners" it only substantiates the beef people have with that site.

Posted by vertigoman

2:38 PM, Jan 31, 2008

I'm actually buying off on the versatile Wilkerson angle that the M's are pushing. Much like Guillen last year, this deal seems to come with little risk to the franchise and lots of incentive for Brad Wilkerson. If he's healthy and swinging like he did prior to '06 he's an option at 1st, LF, RF and could spell CF.
I just hope he's not handed anything before ST.

Posted by Adam

2:42 PM, Jan 31, 2008

If he's healthy and swinging like he did prior to '06 he's an option at 1st, LF, RF and could spell CF.

Those are pretty massive assumptions to be making.

Posted by vertigoman

2:47 PM, Jan 31, 2008

If he's healthy and swinging like he did prior to '06 he's an option at 1st, LF, RF and could spell CF.

"Those are pretty massive assumptions to be making."-Adam

How do you mean? I'm not making any assumptions, that's why I started that speculative statement with "IF".

Posted by Pete

3:01 PM, Jan 31, 2008

Resin -

USSM can run its site however it wants. They try to keep things on topic, and I'm grateful for that, because I don't have to wade through the senseless nonsense that permeates so many other comments sections.

I would include "Randy Johnson quit on us! Boo on him!" in my senseless nonsense category. For one, that assertion is absolutely ludicrous. There can't possibly be any discussion where saying that lends any substantial insight.

I find their tongue-in-cheek claim to ban commenters for saying stuff like that part of what makes the site endearing.

Posted by James from Walla Walla

5:03 PM, Jan 31, 2008

Guys&Gals, Assuming the Bedard trade happens? I contend, the best scenario for the Mariners to maximize our offense & defense is to platoon this year. Depending on the pitchers we are facing? Here is my projected line up.

1.) Ichiro CF
2.) Lopez/Vidro 2B
3.) Beltre 3B
4.) Ibanez 1B/DH
5.) Johjima/Clement C
6.) Sexon/Clement 1B/DH
7.) Morse/Balentien LF
8.) *Wilkerson/Reed RF
9.) Betancourt SS

No one knows how Sexon & Lopez will bounce back. So, this would give us better match ups, righty vs lefty and vise/versa.

Any merit to this line up?

Also, I would love to see the Mariners send HoRam to the Orioles in the Bedard deal!

Posted by marty

10:15 AM, Feb 01, 2008

Wilkerson + Ibanez + Balentien might be a nice platoonable outfield though. so only one of the Raul/Wilk combo bats against lefties. Hopefully Vlad will have a nice spring to keep the pressure on the old folks.

Posted by jHUGE1

7:36 PM, Feb 02, 2008

I think Bavasi should set a deadline. Make up your mind or the deal's off the table. I would love to see the M's land a stud at the top of the rotation--but hanging on to Jones and Sherril isn't so bad either.

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