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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 28, 2008 11:01 AM

Go play in the snow

Posted by Geoff Baker

Feels like a good old morning in my hometown of Montreal. Well, OK, maybe not. When I was back there a couple of weeks ago, the temperature fell to minus-11 with six inches of snow overnight. Not that cold here in Seattle, though that white stuff I'm seeing outside is quite unusual for these parts. I've heard of "strawman arguments" on this site. Anyone for a "snowman argument"?

Like I told you last night, this Erik Bedard deal could take a couple of days to go through. A look at why takes us to Prime Suspect Numero Uno. We warned you about Peter Angelos last night. Yes, he does have to sign-off on a deal. You'd think a guy whose team was contemplating a deal of this magnitude could reschedule his lunch with the Chamber of Commerce, or whatever has him preoccupied today. But hey, it's his life, his team, and I'm sure he's got some serious stuff on his agenda. So, stop hanging by your computer waiting for an announcement. Go play in the snow.

What? You can't tear yourself away from the blog? OK, let's get on with life then.

What should be next on Seattle's agenda? Well, with this deal still waiting for the "i's" and "t's" to be dotted and crossed, another outfielder to replace bean-spiller Adam Jones is a must. I'm being told the Mariners already have a one-year deal with free-agent Brad Wilkerson in their back pocket for the moment a Bedard trade is finalized.


Wilkerson hanging around in the background would seem to be exactly what Mariners GM Bill Bavasi was talking about last week when he suggested that someone in his position often has to move ahead and make secondary deals in the hopes of Plan A panning out. He then suggested that, sometimes, a GM will look less than intelligent for making that secondary move if Plan A doesn't pan out. But sometimes, you've got no choice.

There were other teams interested in Wilkerson, a decent corner outfielder. The Boston Red Sox were one of them. At some point, Wilkerson would have told the M's: "Look, I love you guys, but I can't wait on Angelos and the Orioles on this Bedard thing, forever. Sign me now, or I'm going to Boston." In which case the M's, for whom, as I've mentioned, money is not a real issue, would have swallowed hard and offered him a fair price. I'm thinking Jose Guillen type money. Guillen received a $5.5 million base salary from the team a year ago, but let's not forget, he was coming off an injury.

Guillen really received much closer to $9 million when all of his incentive targets were reached. I'm thinking roughly $8 million for Wilkerson.

What can Seattle offer him? Playing time. More playing time than the Red Sox, or some other suitors. The M's can throw Wilkerson in right field, maybe even platoon him with Wladimir Balentien there if they feel ready to break the minor leaguer in.

Or, they could put him in left field full-time and move Raul Ibanez to right. With Wilkerson, you get some flexibility.

You also get a platoon split of an .859 on-base-plus slugging percentage (OPS) against lefties, but only .757 against righties. Now, that's not nearly as dire as the splits Ibanez has, but it does leave a bit of room for a platoon with Balentien if the M's feel the latter is ready to be called up. Or, they could let Balentien hone his skills in Class AAA for a few months -- the route I see this team ultimately taking -- then call him up mid-season and break him in a la Adam Jones circa 2007.

Thing is, if Wilkerson stays healthy, the team can live with a 20-homer, .786 OPS guy in one corner, provided Ibanez keeps delivering at the plate. Don't forget, that's 20 homers in only 338 at-bats last season with Wilkerson. That's the plus. If he can deliver 500 at-bats or more, something he hasn't done since 2005, this signing could be the Guillen equivalent of 2008. If not, the M's could bring Balentien up to fill in the extra 200 at-bats and then move on from there.

Yes, it's a stop-gap solution until Balentien shows what he's got, or the 2009 free-agent crop arrives. Right now, I'd say Wilkerson is the best solution out there.

And in the unlikely event that Angelos pulls a...well, pulls an Angelos, you've got an outfielder -- albeit an expensive one -- who can be platooned with Ibanez against lefty pitching, or help spell Jones as he breaks into the majors. With all the great stuff Jones has been telling folks about becoming an Oriole, though, I think he'd be shocked to be manning right field for the M's in the months ahead.

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Posted by Henry

11:35 AM, Jan 28, 2008

If the trade goes through, why not make a play for the ex-O's OF, Corey Patterson. He'll be cheap, can play all the outfield positions and can steal some bases at the top of the order. Ichiro, CP, Beltre, etc...not a bad lineup to go along w/ a new Rotation.

Posted by Alaskan

11:38 AM, Jan 28, 2008

"Or, they could let Balentien hone his skills in Class AAA for a few months -- the route I see this team ultimately taking -- then call him up mid-season and break him in a la Adam Jones circa 2007."

So you mean, call him up so he can watch games from the dugout instead of on TV? Yeah, that should help the team.

Why didn't we keep Guillen again?

Posted by scottM

11:44 AM, Jan 28, 2008

Jeff, I appreciate the more respectful tone, and, you are dead on about one thing: it doesn't matter a whit what you and I think. I may be optimistic about the Bedard trade, but I have also respected those in the other camp (especially Adam) who have gone to great lengths to set forth strong reasons why this may not be a good trade. My instincts tell me this will be a good deal for both the O's and the M's. And, you are right, once the transaction is complete, its time to root whole hog for Bedard!

Posted by bsstecks

11:48 AM, Jan 28, 2008

Wilkerson makes the most sense. Bavasi is looking for a placeholder until Wlad is ready, then he'll attack LF next FA. Wilkerson has some flair and he's a decent player, I don't see a huge decline from Guillen with Wlad/Wilkerson platooning.

Posted by Zach C

11:52 AM, Jan 28, 2008

If Wlad has a good season in AAA we could see him playing full time in RF at the end of the season...putting Wilkerson in LF and Ibanez at the DH. How would our defense look then eh...eh...

Posted by Fan

11:55 AM, Jan 28, 2008

This is completely off-topic. If anyone has a copy of 2007-2008 Seattle Mariners Calendar sponsored by Verizon ... i noticed something funny. January 2008 is Yuniesky Betancourt ... you'll also notice that New Year's Day is on Wednesday and 1/28 is on Tuesday. That's right every day is 1 day off! It hangs in my office ... and I rarely look at it ... obviously since I just noticed it 28 days into the month. Just a Curiousity for your Monday :)

Posted by weebs

11:55 AM, Jan 28, 2008

At least we're not taking a huge hit in the OF now. I have mixed feelings about this, but it's better than solely relying on Wlad.

Posted by -k

11:57 AM, Jan 28, 2008

On a defensive note, Wilkerson has better range then Guillen, but a weaker arm. Overall it's a toss up. Guillen was the better bat, but only because he didn't need a platoon mate.

It might actually be an interesting way to get Vlad some decent playing time. Having him Platoon with both Raul and Wilkerson, since Raul hits righties well, and wilkerson hit's lefties well. Though i wonder if this current regime will be willing to break in a young bat.

Posted by shane/olympia

12:05 PM, Jan 28, 2008

OF Luis Gonzalez, Dodgers
Jan. 11: The Mariners have been talking with Gonzalez about a contract for the 2008 season, according to the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. A five-time Al-Star, the 40-year-old Gonzalez hit .278 with 15 homers and 68 RBIs in 139 games with the Dodgers last season while making $7.1 million. He also is talking with the Brewers and Marlins.


OF Kenny Lofton, Indians !!!!!!!!!!!!!!


OF Corey Patterson, Orioles !!!!!!!!!!!

OF Bobby Kielty, Red Sox


OF Kevin Mench, Brewers


OF Shannon Stewart, A's


OF Trot Nixon, Indians


1B-OF Greg Norton, Rays


just some names from mlb.com hot stove league

lofton and patterson give speed to a lineup that needs it

can you imageine 29 year old patterson batting .270 in the 9 hole stealing 35 to 45 bases in front of ichiro while also having a very solid glove in right who has had 23 errors in 8 seasons so 3 errors a season

with the trade of bedard for AJ shows that the mariners are finally trying to get a team that fits the safe that is based on good D good Pitching active base running and patterson would be a great player to add or the older version of him in kenny lofton

Posted by vertigoman

12:07 PM, Jan 28, 2008

I actually like Wilk from his days in Montreal. I remember him being a fan favorite (ala Rex Hudler or Paul O'neill). He was a versatile hustle player with emerging power and a good eye. Now he seems like a straight pull hitter whom is pressing a bit. Furthermore, he has a questionable shoulder doesn't he?

I wish they'd consider in house options for RF if this deal goes down. Reed has classic LH platoon splits and CF range. If Wlad needs more time for full-time duty then Morse seems to be a RH platoon option.

Posted by Nick S

12:07 PM, Jan 28, 2008

Even if the Bedard trade doesn't go through, they can still sign Wilkerson. Keep AJ in right, Wilkerson in left and Ibanez at DH. Or better yet since I am originally from Minnesota, sign Wilkerson, and use Jones as the centerpiece for a sly Santana deal.

Posted by Faceplant

12:09 PM, Jan 28, 2008

"The M's can throw Wilkerson in right field, maybe even platoon him with Wladimir Balentien there if they feel ready to break the minor leaguer in."


Not likely, considering that Brad Wilkerson has a reverse platoon split.


"You also get a platoon split of an .859 on-base-plus slugging percentage (OPS) against lefties, but only .757 against righties. Now, that's not nearly as dire as the splits Ibanez has, but it does leave a bit of room for a platoon with Balentien if the M's feel the latter is ready to be called up."


Uh, I'm a little baffled how a platoon would work when Wilkerson, and Balantien both hit better off of left handers. That makes no sense.

Posted by Resin isn't Cheating

12:10 PM, Jan 28, 2008

Dave Cameron recently posted a scouting report on Wladimir Balentien that is "as usual" extremely inaccurate ala Jack Cust. I personally watched Wladimir hit breaking balls for home runs and to the contrary to what Dave said, Balentien does crush everything he can make contact with.

I just wanted to point that out when Balentien gets his chance at the break and impresses everyone, remember what that combination of scouting and metrics resulted in projecting Wladimir as a .240 hitter and .400 slugging in '08. Brad Wilkerson will be a disaster in the line-up.

Posted by Adam

12:16 PM, Jan 28, 2008

Wilkerson makes the most sense. Bavasi is looking for a placeholder until Wlad is ready, then he'll attack LF next FA. Wilkerson has some flair and he's a decent player, I don't see a huge decline from Guillen with Wlad/Wilkerson platooning.

At least we're not taking a huge hit in the OF now. I have mixed feelings about this, but it's better than solely relying on Wlad.

Guys, the problem is that Guillen was a horrible defensive OF, and Wilkerson is only a marginal improvement. Offense and defense together, going from Jones to Wilkerson makes the team worse.

I don't see why anyone is comforted by Wilkerson.

Yes, he hit 20 HRs in 338 ABs, but he also struck out 107(!) times in those 338 ABs. That's more than 200 Ks over a full season. .319 OBP as well. Since his career year in 2004, he's been pretty bad.

The only saving grace is that Wilkerson's deal appears to be a one-year deal. Just don't expect him to make the team better.

Posted by Jeff

12:16 PM, Jan 28, 2008

scottM, I apologize if I was coming across disrespectful to you. You are correct, in the end, all we want is for the M's to be WS contenders, even if we all have different beliefs on how they reach that goal.

Believe me, as soon as Bedard is in an M's uniform, I will be the first to want Bavasi to work on an extension. His ability and what he brings to the mound is definitely not in question.

Posted by Mike

12:16 PM, Jan 28, 2008

Resin--Your disdain for Cameron is as humorous as your point is incorrect. Cameron said scouts said Cust was a jerk. He also said last year that he's the type of hitter you could pick up on the cheap rather than paying a price in trade and salary than Vidro.

Did Dave ban you or something?

Posted by helpfelix

12:19 PM, Jan 28, 2008

Platoon OFer for $8M???!!!!! YIKES!!!

I'd put money on the BoSox NOT willing to even come close to $3M for Wilkerson to platoon for them!

Anymore than $4.5M and I'd be pissed!!!

Posted by Paul H

12:29 PM, Jan 28, 2008

Shannon Stewart od Balentien would be a better fit. Why go from one of the fastest outfields to one of the slowest?

Posted by vertigoman

12:30 PM, Jan 28, 2008

"Guys, the problem is that Guillen was a horrible defensive OF, and Wilkerson is only a marginal improvement. Offense and defense together, going from Jones to Wilkerson makes the team worse."

Now I'm not saying that I'm a full on advocate for Wilk but:
1) Adam Jones has not been our RF'er so Wilk (or any RF'er) does not down grade RF from Jones. They either upgrade or downgrade from Guillen.
2) If you're going to project Wilk's offense based on last year then go ahead,be fair, and do the same for Jones. He would have been on pace for nearly 200 k's as well (while boasting modest power).
3) I have no doubt that Jones will be a good player, maybe even great but his production next year is easily replaced.

Posted by okori

12:36 PM, Jan 28, 2008

I agree with Henry. I'd grap Patterson, and the motivations not an offensive one. I'm looking at the FA OF's, and I don't see one that can make an offensive difference. Green, Gonzo, Wilkerson, Sanders, Lofton and Patterson all have holes in their game. None are a great fit for this team in that regard. So I think you look at defense. Patterson has tremendous value there, and doesn't demand a huge payday.

Posted by Faceplant

12:38 PM, Jan 28, 2008

"I just wanted to point that out when Balentien gets his chance at the break and impresses everyone, remember what that combination of scouting and metrics resulted in projecting Wladimir as a .240 hitter and .400 slugging in '08."


Only if you remember that the traditional scouting heavy Baseball America ranked Greg Miller as the 8th best prospect in baseball in 2004.


The point, once again, is that talent evaluation is not an exact science. There is a lot of opinion and guesswork that goes into it, and it's pretty common for even pro scouts to be wrong. It comes with the territory.


Try to remember that the next time you try to turn every thread into a rant against sabermetrics.


Brad Wilkerson will be a disaster in the line-up."


Dave Cameron doesn't like him either. Oh God! You and him agree on something! Oh the humanity!

Posted by scrapiron

12:48 PM, Jan 28, 2008

excuse-o-meter
I'm not trying to make excuses, but in 2006 Wilkerson had an injured shoulder and in 2007 he had a pulled hamstring. If he stays healthy, who knows what could happen.

Also some are saying that Sexson's hamstring injury last season led to his looping swing that caused so many strikeouts as well.

If Sexson and Wilkerson have healthy hammies in '08 will they cut down on the strikeouts and have breakout years?

Posted by AKMarinersFan

12:52 PM, Jan 28, 2008

Wilkerson? Why not pickup Carl Everett again? Bedard better be good because he is going to have to throw a shutout every night to win games. This will be the worst offensive (and defensive club in the league). Who cares is they have great pitching. The balance on this team is way way out of line. Anyone else want to become an A's fan?

Posted by Austin in Md

12:53 PM, Jan 28, 2008

If you need a corner outfielder just ask for Payton or Gibbons from us. I'm sure we would throw one or both in. Atleast I would hope.

Posted by helpfelix

1:02 PM, Jan 28, 2008

AKMarinersFan...you want to be a A's fan now?!

You do realize that they sent Swisher & Haren away right?

You do realize that Huson Street & Blanton will be gone by July right?

Fans like you we don't need...but you no what? The A's will take any fan that will come on board for them, because they don't have any to speak of!

Posted by BrianL

1:08 PM, Jan 28, 2008

The As know how to properly rebuild their franchise. Their fans can count on Billy Beane to find high quality (yet cheap) talent that can be fielded in a few seasons.

If Beane was in the Ms front office, post 2001 rebuilding would have been finished by 2004, instead of the perpetual rebuilding we've been doing for the last seven years.

If you haven't yet, you'd best read Moneyball.

Posted by Jerome

1:10 PM, Jan 28, 2008

As an Orioles' fan (and part-time masochist), I've been watching the news closely to see what happens with Bedard and what we can get for him. It should end up being a pretty good trade for both clubs, if the names I've heard hold up.

But the Corey Patterson discussion on this thread causes me to wonder how much attention you people are paying. Patterson can run like a deer, and is a good guy, but he seems uncoachable as a hitter, always swinging in a gradious arc that's destined to make a nice breeze but not move a baseball very often or very far. In case you haven't heard, you can't steal first base.

If Patterson were even PRETTY good, don't you think the O's, with all the dreck they've got playing for them, would have offered him a new contract by now?

Posted by Lance

1:14 PM, Jan 28, 2008

Yes, Wilkerson had 20 homers in 338 ABs last year, but he got to play in the cozy confines of the ballpark in Arlington (not what they call it anymore, but it still describes where it's at). Don't expect those numbers to be even close playing at Safeco half the time.

His 2007 OPS at home was .887, away .679. He hit .259 against righties and .224 against lefties, striking out a third of the time overall.

If he's what we get to replace AJ it all is stinking more and more to me by the hour.

C'mon, Angelos, step in and save the Mariners from their own stupidity.

BTW, Churchill is tossing out the names Tillman, Butler and Mickolio along with AJ and George. No word on anyone else coming west except Bedard.

Posted by Henry

1:20 PM, Jan 28, 2008

I'm not saying Patterson is anyone's savior. I'd be more than happy to have Balentien be our RF for the today and the future. The only reason why I say add Patterson is do to the fact that he'll be cheap, working for a contract, could be a stop gate for Balentien and would be an awesome addition to the top (or bottom) of our lineup. Why not get some cheap speed. As a fourth OF, he could help out Ibanez late in the game for defense purpose. The guy can fly and cover a lot of real estate.

If Wilkerson is asking more than $3M, forget about it. Balentien could do the same thing he could for a 1/4 of the price.

Posted by vertigoman

1:29 PM, Jan 28, 2008

Safeco would not kill Wilks power. If you look at his hit chart he is a prototypical LH pull hitter. This is the kind of hitter that Safeco either has no effect on or maybe even helps out a bit.
Is his arm really below average?

Posted by Lance

1:34 PM, Jan 28, 2008

BTW, Wilkerson had season ending shoulder surgery in August 2006 and dealt with hamstring problems last year, so saying he's not the injury risk Guillen was is being very generous, or odoriferous as the case may be.

Posted by SDF Mariner

1:38 PM, Jan 28, 2008

I know Jeremy Reed didn't pan out in his one chance with the M's but we really should be looking at him in RF. He's still relatively young, plays excellent defense, and is a better contact hitter than Wilkerson or any other FA OFer out there right now. On top of that, we're already paying for him and it would give Wlad another year in AAA to get ready.

Posted by helpfelix

1:46 PM, Jan 28, 2008

Regarding Wlad? He has successfully figured out how to hit to RF with power!!! That's according to all the scouts. That's when Boone started doing really well at Safeco (in addition to the ROIDS), Lou was adamant of him learning to hit towards RF fences...instead of LF!

Plus, Rainiers ballpark is VERY similiar to Safeco fields, so that just makes Jones & Wlads numbers even more impressive!!!

Throw Reed in as our 4th OFer & defense replacement in the 7th inning, and I think I would prefer Wlad in RF!

Unless Bavasi trades for Jason Bay for RF, I say just stay with Wlad and see what he can do in the bottom of the lineup

Posted by Jim

2:01 PM, Jan 28, 2008

"Uh, I'm a little baffled how a platoon would work when Wilkerson, and Balantien both hit better off of left handers. That makes no sense."

Uhhh...how did you arrive at that conclusion?

According to minorleaguesplits.com, Balentien hit .254/.360/.482 at Tacoma in 2007 off lefties, and .306/.364/.513 off righties. Unless he historically(i.e. years previous to 2007) did just the opposite(and I don't have data for those years.)

Posted by sedihawk

2:24 PM, Jan 28, 2008

Adam Jones STILL out of the country?? According to Shannon he is:

http://www.komoradio.com/marinersradio/shannon/14571602.html

Geoff, what do you think?? Did Angelos pull an Angelos after all?

Posted by Klatz

2:28 PM, Jan 28, 2008

Here's hoping that Angelos gets a bee in his bonnet and nixes the trade. And if the trade goes through, hope that all outfield balls are hit to center field.

Posted by Donovan

2:30 PM, Jan 28, 2008

The disturbing part of Drayer's report is Jones denying that he told the local press down there that he was being traded? What's that all about? Maybe he thought he was talking off the record and now he's being told to put a lid on it by the FO?

Posted by weebs

2:33 PM, Jan 28, 2008

I hate myself for saying this, but if this trade goes down, there is one solution, and one solution alone for the Mariners contending to win the AL West outright in 2008.

Barry Bonds.

Posted by ollie

2:43 PM, Jan 28, 2008

is this real? I mean everything I read says that they are saying there is NO Deal in place.

Posted by Beady Eyes

2:45 PM, Jan 28, 2008

I thought Wlad was out of options this year? I don't think he can go down to AAA without clearing waivers.

Posted by hendjaz

2:47 PM, Jan 28, 2008

Fox Sports and Ken Rosenthal are speculating that Angelos may now in fact be holding up this trade or even that it could be off.


http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/story/7726024/Source:-M's-deal-for-Bedard-on-hold

Posted by Donovan

2:49 PM, Jan 28, 2008

Weebs - please!


I want the M's to go for it this year, but, to quote Val Kilmer as Doc Holiday in "Tombstone", my hypocrisy only goes so far.

Posted by Resin isn't Cheating

2:53 PM, Jan 28, 2008

Mike-Your weak homer attack conveniently leaves out Cameron's scouting report on Jack Cust that basically stated pitchers would figure out Cust's major weakness and his poor approach at the plate and he would be out of baseball in a hurry. This post came immediately following Billy Bean acquiring Cust in favor of USSM's favorte son Chris Snelling. Cust ended up with a .912 OPS in a 124 games in real-life MLB baseball last year.

Posted by Chopper58

2:54 PM, Jan 28, 2008

I'm astounded by the continual criticism of the trade. There is always risk in a trade and you have to give up quality (unproven at this level) for a TOR pitcher. Geoff has continually shown the merits of this trade. I for one am excited by this trade. Meanwhile, Wilkersen can fill the gap until Wlad is ready and can substitute for Sexson if he flops again. Look out for this year, and please remember what you were spruiking in September if we are in the playoffs. I'll remember my opinions.

Posted by Quinault

2:55 PM, Jan 28, 2008

I perfer the build from within scenario - if this trade is finalized - so Spring Training will be interesting, as positions are open. I prefer Raul to platoon at 1B & DH to open up 2 OF spots. I also like Jeff Clement to make the club to add punch to the line up. So that means we can carry a defensive outfield of either Reed/Morse (or both) and/or Wlad. No more fa stopgap players! And if this trade comes about, does that mean we not tender HoRam? And what was that with Richie the other day? Disappointed fans want to know! Folks who were waiting for autographs were pi****d. I heard about it all day and I am a season ticket holder. But the addition of pitching is not complete without the defense to improve the club. I will go out and play in the snow now.

Posted by Resin isn't Cheating

2:58 PM, Jan 28, 2008

Faceplant-Try to remember that scouts do not rank the prospects in B.A. The scouting reports are compiled which are accurate, but the ranking are the opinion of the Baseball America editor and writers. Try remembering that fact when you bash fans of scouting who don't worship the Bill James Bible.

Posted by Bellevue Rob

3:04 PM, Jan 28, 2008

Since we are not including him in the Bedard deal,( Right ?!!), Why not Clement in RF?

Posted by Jeff

3:07 PM, Jan 28, 2008

That would not be wise to put Clement in RF before finishing the evaluation at catcher. Catcher is a hard position to fill and if he works out there, you'd want to keep him there and give him a fair shot.

Posted by Lance

3:17 PM, Jan 28, 2008

B. Eyes, Wlad has one more option left, on somewhat of a technicality based, IIRC, on when he signed with the team. Jason Churchill explained it awhile back. I don't recall the particulars.

Posted by scrapiron

3:19 PM, Jan 28, 2008

Quinault - What happened with Richie Sexson at FanFest? I didn't hear anything, as I went on Sunday.

Posted by scottM

3:22 PM, Jan 28, 2008

What if Bedard is using this trade as a negotiating tool to get his five year extension from the O's? He has stated in the past that he wants to play for a contender, and the O's will definitely not be a contender in the AL East with him there. (Unlike the M's who are much much closer to a legitimate playoff team).

Adam Jones, seems to be backpeddling on his quotes from yesterday, and , most telling, he's not in Baltimore today. Interesting drama! How do you like this soap opera now, Adam? I hope neither side of this trade/no-trade debate gloats too much at the outcome. We'll all be too worn out by then. :=)

Say, GEOFF, are you out scooping snow as you recommended, or trying to find out if your great "scoop" is melting before your eyes !?!?!?!

Posted by scrapiron

3:27 PM, Jan 28, 2008

More likely is that the deal has been agreed to in principle, but everyone is waiting until Angelos returns Tuesday to officially approve the deal. No player notifications or physicals will take place until Angelos signs off.

If Angelos vetoes this deal this late in the process he'd be the laughingstock of baseball and no one would deal with McPhail realizing what a lame-duck GM he is.

Posted by Bill

3:29 PM, Jan 28, 2008

This is driving me nuts. If Angelos says no-go on this deal I would guess a) He thinks ticket sales will drop with no Bedard; or b) He thinks the O's could get more for Bedard at the trade deadline.


From what I've read about Bedard's long-term wishes, it sounds like he wants to play for a team with a chance at winning, but wouldn't enjoy dealing with the media frenzy that would come with being the (or an) ace on the Yankees or Red Sox. One Baltimore writer suggested he might sign with the M's long-term, if this deal ever gets done.


http://www.baltimoresun.com/sports/baseball/bal-sp.schmuck27jan27,0,734945.column

Posted by ajdaddy

3:33 PM, Jan 28, 2008

The sabermetricians have their arguments, as do the people who don't believe in it. Personally, no matter what I 'see' with my own eyes, I haven't played at a high enough level nor have enough knowledge to be able to visually assess a player. Kam Mickolio was lights out the 2 times I saw him...yet I know enough to know that that's too small a sample set. Wlad might be the man, might not. Sabermetrics is an attempt to use statistics to justify what we see on the field. This board, these blogs would be much the poorer without it. That's why a board such as this stays alive during the winter! I'm in favor of the trade, but wish that Morrow could have been included in a package that didn't include Jones. Ah well...
Oh yeah...if you don't like USSM, don't read it, and quit referring to it. At least there's an opinion out there, and a well-written and researched one. Doesn't mean you have to like it, but Bill James wasn't hired by the BoSox for nothing, either.

Posted by Ollie

3:33 PM, Jan 28, 2008

1. I think we've been duped.

2. I think jones might have spooked this deal to pieces by opening his mouth.

3. I think Bavasi gets to claim credit for his effort here, even if we don't land this guy. Well done Mariners, another opportunity screwed up!

Posted by just waiting

3:34 PM, Jan 28, 2008

Ben Broussard > Brad Wilkerson

Posted by Adam

3:41 PM, Jan 28, 2008

Regarding Wlad? He has successfully figured out how to hit to RF with power!!! That's according to all the scouts. That's when Boone started doing really well at Safeco (in addition to the ROIDS), Lou was adamant of him learning to hit towards RF fences...instead of LF!

helpfelix - I don't what scouts you are listening to, but of his 24 HRs, Wlad only hit 2 to RF. He hit 14 to LF. He's a pull hitter.

http://firstinning.com/players/Wladimir-Balentien-a/

Posted by Al

3:46 PM, Jan 28, 2008

I like how Jones in Drayer's blog said he never told any reporter that he was traded and that his only orders are to not play any games, I mean the guy hasn't even left Venezuela. But, it still seems somethings close.

Posted by East of Enumclaw M's Fan

3:55 PM, Jan 28, 2008

ESPN's Ticker is now showing that Jeery Crasnick has been informed that AJ and Sherrill have informed teammates that they have been asked to have physicals for the Orioles.

Posted by Mike

4:05 PM, Jan 28, 2008

Resin--Google has failed me. I even tried USS Mariner but I find no evidence of your characterization of Dave Cameron's Cust scouting report. I remember his criticizing Cust and saying that scouts said he was a pretty terrible person. I also remember Cameron writing that Cust was an example of flawed talent (no glove) that was freely available and he could hit the heck out of right handed pitching.

But hey, I got you to use OPS. Baby steps. :-)

Posted by pbk13

4:12 PM, Jan 28, 2008

Wow, you guys are all gloom and doom. Our new outfield...Raul, Ichiro, Wilk is not going to get us anywhere near the playoffs. It's just not. And we're pinning our hopes for power on Sexson? Something tells me that's just plain nuts. We are quite a ways from having nine competent players. We are light years away from making the playoffs.

So what's it going to be, Bavasi? Wilk might be the best possible player, but he ainít no answer. And Raul, as Jeff Sullivan likes to say, is a corpse out there in left.

We must do better, or the acquisition of Bedard will be for naught.

Posted by Al

4:15 PM, Jan 28, 2008

Couldn't we hang onto the pipe dream that Bavasi signed Wilkerson to replace Ibanez in the OF and try and have Ibanez at 1st with Sexson at DH while keeping the prospects...I know it's a stretch...

Posted by tripbill

5:11 PM, Jan 28, 2008

Why did we GIVE AWAY Randy Wynn again?

Posted by tripbill

5:16 PM, Jan 28, 2008

re: Barry Bonds. You are absolutely right. Everyone knows his downfalls but he can swing it. A little DH. Talk about having some proven power.

Posted by Mr. X

5:19 PM, Jan 28, 2008

Why did we give up Winn? It's simple. When he was traded in 2005, he was a part of one of the weakest hitting starting outfields in the history of baseball. Winn, Reed, and Ichiro had a grand total of 24 home runs for the Mariners that year. Kevin Mench had one more than that, and it took him 255 less games to do it.

Oh yes, and Bavasi wanted reclamation project #307 in Jesse Foppert.

Posted by scottM

5:28 PM, Jan 28, 2008

"Stay tuned for tomorrow's episode of 'As the Trade Turns,' "

This quote is from one of the Baltimore Sun blogs, where the O's fans seem to be more in favor of this trade than against it. They all seem to hate their owned Angelos, as much as M's fans tend to loathe Bavasi.

Posted by Rob

5:49 PM, Jan 28, 2008

I'm not a big fan of picking up Wilkerson.
He bats for a very low average: .222 in 2006, and .234 in 2007.
He strikes out a lot.
He seems to be on the decline.


He is a significant downgrade from Guillen.

The only positive thing I can see from picking him up is just in case Richie pulls another Richie. Brad might be a slight improvement at 1B.

Posted by Faceplant

8:42 PM, Jan 28, 2008

"Faceplant-Try to remember that scouts do not rank the prospects in B.A. The scouting reports are compiled which are accurate, but the ranking are the opinion of the Baseball America editor and writers."


So your proof that sabermetrics is useless is that Dave Cameron (a blogger) gave a poor report of Jack Cust, and that the WRITERS of baseball prospectus ranked Jeremy Reed the number 2 prospect in baseball. You want to attack sabermetrics by citing the work of writers, and bloggers, and then you whine when I simply do the same thing.


Of course I don't believe that basebal prospectus ranking of Reed, or Dave Camerons assessment of Cust, OR baseball America's ranking of Greg Miller really prove anything. As I've said over, and over again talent evaluation is not an exact science, and mistakes are going to be made.


"Try remembering that fact when you bash fans of scouting who don't worship the Bill James Bible."


Or maybe you could stop completely lying about what I say. I've never bashed anyone who doesn't "worship" the "Bill James Bible". What I do take offense to is people like you who can't have an honest discussion about this to save your life. YOU are the one attacking Sabermetrics on a daily basis. YOU are the one who looks for any and all opportunities possible to bash people that believe in using advanced metrics in conjunction with traditional scouting.


Stop trying to play the poor victim of the big bad statheads, because it's getting really ridiculous.

Posted by Faceplant

8:48 PM, Jan 28, 2008

"Resin--Google has failed me. I even tried USS Mariner but I find no evidence of your characterization of Dave Cameron's Cust scouting report. I remember his criticizing Cust and saying that scouts said he was a pretty terrible person. I also remember Cameron writing that Cust was an example of flawed talent (no glove) that was freely available and he could hit the heck out of right handed pitching."


The funny thing is that it was the traditional scouts that actually agreed with Dave Cameron on this one, and the statheads that disagreed. Resin seems to have forgotten about that.

The only thing I could find was an blog post from 2004 in which Cameron pointed out that Custs minor league numbers were inflated due to him having played in band boxes his entire career, that he couldn't hit lefties (which is still true), and that he had absolutely no defensive value.

Posted by Helpfelix

1:47 PM, Jan 29, 2008

6Geoff what's up with all this crap??!!! Rotoworld reported that this was just posted in the Balitmore Sun paper:

Unconfirmed speculation on a Baltimore radio show is that Adam Jones has a degenerative hip condition that's put the Erik Bedard deal on hold.

There's been nothing legitimate anywhere lending this any weight, but since the Baltimore Sun is starting to run with it ever so slightly now, we will as well. As the Sun's Roch Kubatko put it: "Maybe this will prove true later. We'll find out soon enough. But nobody at The Sun would go on a radio show and blurt out this kind of information without being absolutely positive (and obviously reporting it in the paper first). That's dangerous territory, especially when you're possibly impacting a young athlete's reputation and future earnings." Exactly right.

Source: Baltimore Sun

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