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Thursday, February 06, 2014

Dodgers, Orioles, D-Backs finalists for Bronson Arroyo

The list of teams with serious designs on signing free-agent right-hander Bronson Arroyo is down to three, reports USA Today’s Bob Nightengale. According to Nightengale, the Dodgers, Orioles and Diamondbacks are the three finalists, with Arizona being, in Nightengale’s words, the “slight favorites.”

Arroyo, age 36, is coming off a 2013 season in which he pitched to a 3.79 ERA, 101 ERA+ and 3.65 K/BB ratio in 202 innings of work. For his career, Arroyo has an ERA+ of 104 across 391 games, 355 of which have been starts. Arroyo’s fly-ball tendencies mean he’s best suited for a home ballpark that cuts down on home runs, which doesn’t describe Arizona’s Chase Field. Even so, Arroyo has been a reliable rotation stabilizer for years: he’s never been on the disabled list, and he’s logged at least 199 innings in each of the last nine seasons.

Thanks to Drew.

Repoz Posted: February 06, 2014 at 11:29 AM | 28 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: mlb

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   1. Tripon Posted: February 06, 2014 at 11:31 AM (#4652569)
You guys can have him.
   2. Jason Michael(s) Bourn Identity Crisis Posted: February 06, 2014 at 11:32 AM (#4652572)
I've never liked Arroyo, so I hope Colorado makes a late run for him. Wiffle balls at altitude!
   3. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: February 06, 2014 at 11:43 AM (#4652582)
at this point I'd be happy if the orioles signed any reasonably cromulent pitcher.
   4. Davo's Favorite Tacos Are Moose Tacos Posted: February 06, 2014 at 11:48 AM (#4652588)
I have a feeling that the Orioles are going to "just miss" on yet another free agent. What are the odds?!?!
   5. SoSHially Unacceptable Posted: February 06, 2014 at 11:50 AM (#4652589)
I have a feeling that the Orioles are going to "just miss" on yet another free agent. What are the odds?!?!


That's not fair. There's a very good chance they could sign him pending a physical, and then kill the deal based on the results of the physical.

   6. John Northey Posted: February 06, 2014 at 11:52 AM (#4652590)
Heh. After this winter if I was a free agent I'd be very hesitant to sign with Baltimore if it is remotely close given that track record. A failed physical could cost millions.
   7. DL from MN Posted: February 06, 2014 at 11:53 AM (#4652592)
2 years $22M seems pretty reasonable for Arroyo.
   8. puck Posted: February 06, 2014 at 11:55 AM (#4652594)
I've never liked Arroyo, so I hope Colorado makes a late run for him. Wiffle balls at altitude!

I think they already tried this with Jeremy Guthrie.
   9. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: February 06, 2014 at 11:56 AM (#4652596)
Never ever did I think Arroyo was going to have the career he had when the Sox traded him for Wily Mo.

Also he apparently was at one time dating a college classmate of mine. Not sure it's still going on but it was a bit of a shocker to read an article about him and see her picture.
   10. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: February 06, 2014 at 12:12 PM (#4652606)
Don't know why Arroyo would go to the Dodgers, unless they really overpay. He could easily get bumped from the rotation there.
   11. JJ1986 Posted: February 06, 2014 at 12:16 PM (#4652609)
Is Beckett going to be ready for opening day? I know the Dodgers have unlimited cash, but I don't think they need six starters making >$10m a year with another expected back in May.
   12. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: February 06, 2014 at 12:36 PM (#4652624)
Is Beckett going to be ready for opening day? I know the Dodgers have unlimited cash, but I don't think they need six starters making >$10m a year with another expected back in May.

Yeah, unless they think Beckett and Billingsley are both likely to be out for the year, this looks like a good way to pay somebody $10M to sit in the pen.

Why not get a couple of million dollar stopgap?
   13. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: February 06, 2014 at 12:41 PM (#4652628)
Yeah, unless they think Beckett and Billingsley are both likely to be out for the year, this looks like a good way to pay somebody $10M to sit in the pen.

Why not get a couple of million dollar stopgap?


Is he a better pitcher than the stopgap? If you are going to spend out the wazoo why cheap out on the fringes? Assuming that Arroyo will in fact be better than the $2 million stopgap AND that he won't cause problems if he is shuttled between the bullpen and the rotation why not make the move?
   14. Joyful Calculus Instructor Posted: February 06, 2014 at 12:49 PM (#4652632)
Last year the Dodgers started with 8 starting pitching with MLB contracts. And there was still a point in the year in which they had both Steven Fife and Matt Magill in the rotation. But, yeah, at this point I don't think Arroyo is worth it. I think they also have six relievers with MLB contracts (Jansen, Wilson, Howell, Perez, Wright, League) meaning that there isn't even room to store someone in the pen unless both Withrow and Rodriguez are in AAA. They're pretty much expecting for somebody to be injured at all time, which after last year it's tough to blame them.
   15. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: February 06, 2014 at 01:10 PM (#4652647)
Is he a better pitcher than the stopgap? If you are going to spend out the wazoo why cheap out on the fringes? Assuming that Arroyo will in fact be better than the $2 million stopgap AND that he won't cause problems if he is shuttled between the bullpen and the rotation why not make the move?

Because there's got to be a better use of $8M than 6th SP.

It's also highly unlikely that a guy who takes tons of pride in making every single start, every year, is not going to cause problems if he's bumped from the rotation. Using Arroyo as a swing man totally discards his biggest strenght; he gives you 200 IP every year.
   16. Joyful Calculus Instructor Posted: February 06, 2014 at 02:09 PM (#4652680)
I think Arroyo would bump Beckett to the swingman role.
   17. jmurph Posted: February 06, 2014 at 02:54 PM (#4652712)
I think Arroyo would bump Beckett to the swingman role.


That meeting should go well.
   18. The Yankee Clapper Posted: February 06, 2014 at 04:23 PM (#4652779)
. . . I don't think they need six starters making >$10m a year with another expected back in May.

Let me be the first to say you can never have too much pitching.
   19. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: February 06, 2014 at 04:48 PM (#4652794)
Because there's got to be a better use of $8M than 6th SP.

Yeah what? Their biggest hole otherwise, is probably Crawford/Eithier for 3rd/4th OF. Both of them are projected around 1.5 WAR. Who are you getting for 8m that is better than that? Much less better by as much as the wins you get out of Arroyo.
   20. DL from MN Posted: February 06, 2014 at 04:56 PM (#4652799)
The Dodgers should save the $11M for the trade deadline. They'll know what they need more than they do now.
   21. God Posted: February 06, 2014 at 05:26 PM (#4652814)
Their biggest hole is second base but it's a short-term hole until Guerrero is ready for the majors, probably midseason sometime.

Don't know why Arroyo would go to the Dodgers, unless they really overpay. He could easily get bumped from the rotation there.


One reason might be that he'd double or triple his chances of winning the World Series by signing with the Dodgers instead of Arizona or Baltimore. I know Arroyo already has his ring, but maybe another one is important to him.
   22. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: February 06, 2014 at 05:31 PM (#4652820)
Arroyo to the Orioles probably improves the Pirates' chances of re-signing Burnett, so that's where I'm directing my hopes at this point.
   23. Steve Parris, Je t'aime Posted: February 06, 2014 at 05:54 PM (#4652844)
I thought Arroyo was done after 2011, when he gave up a million home runs and lost a tick or two off his middling fastball. Lefties in particular killed him that year. To his credit he's really bounced back the last two years, locating better and working more with his sinker. It wouldn't surprise me at all to see another couple of solid years out of Arroyo.
   24. toratoratora Posted: February 06, 2014 at 06:05 PM (#4652856)

Let me be the first to say you can never have too much pitching.

Dead on. The longer I watch baseball, the more convinced of this truism I am.
Just in the last few years, at seasons start I remember at least one Braves team and one Red Sox teams both labeled "too much pitching."
Both suffered massive injuries and were casting around for anyone to throw on the mound, just to eat some innings. It cost the 2011 Sox the playoffs
Pitching is so volatile. It's almost a guarantee that at least one starter will go down for a significant period of time (According to one fangraphs article, "starting pitcher who has thrown at least 120 innings the previous season will have a 39% chance of going on the disabled list (DL) at some point during the next season.). With a five man rotation, that means almost 2 out of 5 starters will go down over the year. Keeping that in mind, a good argument can be made that a team serious about contending should consider carrying an extra starter, preparing for the inevitable.
If nothing else, use the player as a swing man, and long reliever. That way he can still contribute value while waiting the injury that will put him in the rotation.
   25. DL from MN Posted: February 06, 2014 at 06:46 PM (#4652882)
Having 5 healthy starters is probably why the White Sox finally won a World Series.
   26. Jim (jimmuscomp) Posted: February 06, 2014 at 07:04 PM (#4652892)
Having 5 healthy starters is probably why the White Sox finally won a World Series.


And Doug Eddings.
   27. Walt Davis Posted: February 06, 2014 at 11:06 PM (#4652992)
Never ever did I think Arroyo was going to have the career he had when the Sox traded him for Wily Mo.

I miss a lot and I never expected Arroyo to pitch this well for this long either but, man, I nailed the outcome of that trade.

As to his current state ...

in the expansion era, 117 pitchers aged 34-36 had at least 400 IP. Of those 117, Arroyo is 80th in WAR at 5.1 and is 40th in IP at 603. If we limit it to the last 20 years to make some adjustment for 5th starters, etc. you get 48 pitchers of which he is 37th by WAR and 14th by WAR. By WAR and IP, his closest comps would be Burnett and Lieber.

Back to the first list and keeping everybody between 4 and 6.5 WAR and seeing how that group did at 37-38 ... we've got 24 comps ...

J Niekro 8.5 WAR
J Perry 7.9
Roberts 6.3

apparently it's good to be the brother of a better-known pitcher. Assuming there's no Gaylord Arroyo out there ...

Tewk 3.3
Renko 2.1
Pierce, Byrd, Contreras 1.6
Morris 1.4
Flanagan 1.1
Tapani 1.0

13 guys worth less than 1 WAR (Miguel Batista at -2.1). You can also add Rhoden and Pavano who didn't pitch at 37 (and 38 for Rhoden, Pavano might pitch this year). Out of this group, 5 made it over 250 IP and another 4 between 200-250. Median IP is about 180 and median WAR is about .9. With above-average durability, Arroyo is probably expected to pitch more than 180 IP at 37-38 but I wouldn't count on substantially more WAR.

1/$8 would be OK, add a vesting option to taste.
   28. Misirlou was a Buddhist prodigy Posted: February 07, 2014 at 08:42 AM (#4653059)
And Doug Eddings.


Eddings didn't drive in the subsequent winning run. And Eddings didn't hold the Angels to 7 runs over the next 3 games.

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