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Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Pierre to Cubs for young pitchers

Here’s a thread for the apparently impending Pierre deal.

The Miami Herald says “three minor leaguers.”

The Sun-Times says “The Marlins are thought to be seeking two or three pitching prospects in return for Pierre. Sergio Mitre, Todd Wellemeyer and Class AA pitchers Ricky Nolasco and Renyel Pinto are among the pool of potential pitchers that might be sent to Florida.”

The Trib says “pitcher Sergio Mitre and Double-A pitchers Ricky Nolasco and Reynel Pinto.”

Scott Lange Posted: December 07, 2005 at 01:04 PM | 217 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. Weekly Journalist_ Posted: December 07, 2005 at 01:34 PM (#1765257)
As a Yankee fan I say, thank friekin god. I'd rather have Bubba Crosby!
   2. Dan The Mediocre Posted: December 07, 2005 at 01:35 PM (#1765259)
NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

I don't want Pierre. I don't want him for crap prospects, I don't want him for used baseballs, and I especially don't want him for anything that has actual value.

Bad Hendry! Bad!
   3. Arch Stanton Posted: December 07, 2005 at 01:44 PM (#1765263)
I'll let Ben Folds speak for me. I don't have the words.

"In a minute it will all be coming down
And they know it now
But no one makes a sound
Such a shame to ruin this bright lazy, sunny day

The end is growing near
And we're treading water now
And holding back our tears
And the day is rising
We're sinking"
   4. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: December 07, 2005 at 01:59 PM (#1765271)
I'd rather have Bubba Crosby!
Usually, I prefer my team to have better players, not worse ones.

In the majors, Bubba Crosby has a career .250 OBP.

He has four seasons at AAA, and three of those are terrible.

In Las Vegas - 312/419, 410/635 (Park Factor 124 - in the PCL)
In Columbus - 365/379, 306/363

I figure 300/350 for Crosby with below average defense seems right, maybe a bit on the high side. Juan Pierre would have added 40 points of OBP and great speed on the bases. God, if the Yankees actually stick with Crosby, they might not add the 3-5 wins I've just been assuming would come simply from dumping Bernie. That ain't a chicken I'm going to count on yet, though.
   5. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: December 07, 2005 at 02:04 PM (#1765277)
Juan Pierre is an average MLB CF, above average when you factor in his durability, and he will sign a very reasonable one-year deal.

I can see the case that this package is too much - I don't know enough about the Cubs minor leaguers to say confidently - but there was no way Pierre was going to be acquired without a return of some legitimate prospects.
   6. BDC Posted: December 07, 2005 at 02:25 PM (#1765286)
Even having an off-year like '05, Pierre would be the Cubs' best outfielder. The trade may haunt Chicago in years to come (like any trade of prospects), but Pierre is hardly going to be a problem for the Cubs in '06.
   7. Fear is Moses Taylor's Bacon Bits Posted: December 07, 2005 at 02:25 PM (#1765288)
I don't want Pierre. I don't want him for crap prospects, I don't want him for used baseballs, and I especially don't want him for anything that has actual value.

Well, that's just dumb then. Pierre isn't crap, he's a decent player. He will make the Cubs better next year.

That being said...

I can see the case that this package is too much - I don't know enough about the Cubs minor leaguers to say confidently - but there was no way Pierre was going to be acquired without a return of some legitimate prospects.

...this is true. I think they gave up too much. Especially if Pierre is just a placeholder for Pie. I think it's good for Pie that he'll be in AA/AAA all next season and there's no rush to get him up here (unless of course, Pierre gets hurt). I would have preferred to take a chance on Bradley (and who knows, the Cubs still might for RF, but he ain't as valuable there).
   8. SG Posted: December 07, 2005 at 02:30 PM (#1765293)
Usually, I prefer my team to have better players, not worse ones.

The question is if the upgrade from Crosby to Pierre is worth giving up whatever talent it would take to get him. He's an upgrade over Crosby, but if you believe the various defensive metrics that say he is a poor defender, he has to hit .320 to be average.

I'd like to thank the Cubs for preventing him from patrolling CF in the Bronx.
   9. Fear is Moses Taylor's Bacon Bits Posted: December 07, 2005 at 02:31 PM (#1765294)
And ESPN confirms those 3 players, Scott.
   10. zonk Posted: December 07, 2005 at 02:35 PM (#1765300)
The corporate mouthpiece also confirms Mitre, Pinto, and Nolasco directly from Hendry.
   11. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: December 07, 2005 at 02:41 PM (#1765306)
if you believe the various defensive metrics that say he is a poor defender, he has to hit .320 to be average.
Which ones are those? All Goldman cited was DFTs - do you have other evidence?

UZR and ZR have Pierre as about average, under by ~3 runs. Pierre projects as an above average hitter for CF (272, 275, 257 EqAs the last three years), and he's also an extra couple runs better than average in non-SB baserunning.
   12. zonk Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:00 PM (#1765331)
I don't like this deal.

It's not giving up Nolasco and Pinto - who I think were probably the 2 best arms left in the system (assuming Guzman is about done, Pawelek too young to deal) - with maybe a slight nod to Rich Hill.

It's using them to acquire slap-hitting leadoff hitter rather than a big bat, preferably one that can hit left-handed.

There's a damn good chance this will be the least productive Cubs outfield I have ever or will ever see.

Even the early 90s that featured a decrepit Dawson, flailing to oblivion Walton, and any manner random chaff might have it over this crew.

I like Murton - but at our most optimistic, expect, what, 300/370/470? And at this point - that's the class of the OF by wide a margin.

I mean, come on Jimbo... You don't want to play moneyball, fine. Kenny Williams is proof that you don't have to to win a title.

But dammit all, the Cubs problems in 05 wasn't lack of speed, it was lack of OBP. Pierre doesn't solve that. He doesn't make it any worse - but he doesn't solve it.

Plus - Wrigley Field, with its cozy alleys, high infield natural grass, etc - is not the most ideal home park for a player of Pierre's offensive skill set.
   13. chris p Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:09 PM (#1765337)
I'm with MCA on this one. Pierre's not a bad player, and as long as the Cubs didn't give away real prospects, this is an OK deal.

I'd like to thank the Cubs for preventing him from patrolling CF in the Bronx.

also, I agree with SG.
   14. dcsmyth1 Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:11 PM (#1765338)
---"But dammit all, the Cubs problems in 05 wasn't lack of speed, it was lack of OBP. Pierre doesn't solve that."

I think he helps solve it. His projected OBA is .365 (and that projection assumed Fla as home park, not Wrigley), and in a slot where OBA is magnified. Compare that to the .300 (just a guess) OBA the Cubs got from their leadoff men last year.
   15. chris p Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:11 PM (#1765339)
But dammit all, the Cubs problems in 05 wasn't lack of speed, it was lack of OBP. Pierre doesn't solve that. He doesn't make it any worse - but he doesn't solve it.

pierre has a career .355 obp. how many leadoff hitters did better than that last year?
   16. zonk Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:19 PM (#1765345)
Yes, yes.. Pierre's OBP will almost certainly blow away the crap that occupied spot 1 in 05.

But I stand by my suspicion that a move to Wrigley isn't going to do a lot to help Pierre recover from a disappointing 05...unless they mow down that IF jungle (which - if we're going to have to suffer with Neifi at SS and if Walker is truly to be traded and Cedeno/Hairston split 2b, might be a good idea).


I think that .365 projection will be high by about 15-20 points. I'd love to be proven wrong - but Pierre screams "fully loaded Bob Dernier model" to me.
   17. Dan The Mediocre Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:20 PM (#1765347)
Well, that's just dumb then. Pierre isn't crap, he's a decent player. He will make the Cubs better next year.

No, what's dumb is that we're about to give up Mitre, Nolasco, and Pinto for 1 year of Pierre in CF when we have Pie waiting to take it over.
   18. Fred Garvin is dead and Joe Biden is alive Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:22 PM (#1765350)
Ick. I don't like Pierre much at all, but here are the pros/cons as I see them --

<u>Pros</u>
* Does give the Cubs a legitimate CF next season

* Keeps Pie in the minors for most of 2006 (at the very least)

* Gives the Cubs some speed/defense

* Has a decent OBP

* It does solve/free up 40man roster space (though it's too late to pull back Sing)


Cons
* If they are giving up Mitre/Pinto/Nolasco, they are OVER PAYING. In particular, I *really* don't like adding Nolasco to this deal. (I should note that the Cubs site says the deal is for "a package that includes Pinto and Nolasco," but doesn't name Mitre. Who else is after Pierre? The White Sox don't seem serious about it and the Yankees seem occupied with Johnny Damon.

* For the Cubs to pay that much implies that they will keep Pierre for more than a one-year rental, and rumors confirm that they will try to lock him up with a multi-year deal. If so, this may keep Pie in the minors *too* long.

* Pierre's OBP is very heavily skewed by his BA. He's been able to sustain a BA > .300, but needs to because (surprise!) he doesn't walk a ton.

* For someone as speedy as Pierre, his SB% is not great and almost counterproductive.
   19. JC in DC Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:22 PM (#1765353)
I agree w/my Yankee brethren, and I think the key is that I'm (maybe "we're") impressed by the restraint of the team this offseason. I'd hate to give up much of anything for a guy like Pierre and like seeing that the team is being judicious in its pursuit of help. This bodes well for the development of the team.
   20. Fred Garvin is dead and Joe Biden is alive Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:24 PM (#1765356)
There's a damn good chance this will be the least productive Cubs outfield I have ever or will ever see.

If you forgot 2005 so quickly, you have my congratulations.
   21. nycfan Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:24 PM (#1765361)
Gassko's metric had him at -14 runs last year
   22. Fear is Moses Taylor's Bacon Bits Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:24 PM (#1765362)
It's using them to acquire slap-hitting leadoff hitter rather than a big bat, preferably one that can hit left-handed.

If you're saying that because you don't think the Cubs have anything else left to trade, fine. But this isn't the only move he's going to make. It's been repeated tons of places that their #1 priority was a leadoff hitter. That's done. They also wanted a CF (done), and a powerhitting corner OF, preferably LH (not done yet). They aren't done yet, so to say this:

There's a damn good chance this will be the least productive Cubs outfield I have ever or will ever see.

is premature, not to mention probably offbase. Right now, having Murton for a full season and Pierre for a whole season has improved both LF and CF's production from last season. Burnitz wasn't much above league average, so unless they put Mabry out there, I'm confident RF will be better too.

Everyone else already jumped on your OBP comments.
   23. Andere Richtingen Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:26 PM (#1765366)
I think the inclusion of Nolasco/Pinto versus Wellemeyer/one of those two turns what would have been a doltish, ham-handed trade into a very bad one. Both had repeated AA, but both were lights out the second go-round, at age 22. At the same time, I consider all of them second-tier talents, and I think chances are that none of them will amount to much, and it clears a lot of roster space.

It will be really, really dumb if it turns out that Joey Gathright, who is basically the same player as Pierre only younger and cheaper, was available.

Basically, the Cubs picked up Willie Wilson again, but this time at age 28. Maybe they'll stumble bass-ackwards into a World Series title like the Royals did.

Juan Pierre is an average MLB CF, above average when you factor in his durability, and he will sign a very reasonable one-year deal.

Hendry gave up a lot of his cards here, and I assure you he's not thinking one year in making this acquisition.
   24. Starlin of the Slipstream (TRHN) Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:26 PM (#1765367)
There's a damn good chance this will be the least productive Cubs outfield I have ever or will ever see.


There's just no way that this season's OF will be the worst ever. Murton-Pierre-Encarnacion would be a huge improvement over last season's monstrosity: Holly putting up a .238 Eqa in LF, Patterson putting up a .212 in CF and Burnitz put up a .259 in RF. Last season's OF was historically bad. If the Cubs' OF badness could be of a more ordinary variety, they improve hugely. Not to mention the improvement they could see with an OF of Walker - Pierre - Murton or Murton - Pierre - Bradley.
   25. CraigK Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:27 PM (#1765368)
Whew; we lost out on Burnett, but at least the Cubs won't take the division!

OTOH, heck, the way it's going, Dusty'll lead him off in 150 games, he'll hit .260 with nothing to back it up, they'll lose 90+ games, and Dusty will finally be gone.

IOW, rejoice the crappy trades; they're one step closer to Dusty finally doing something stupid and getting fired. (OTOH, wouldn't it be easier to find the photos of Hendry naked with barnyard animals that Dusty's using as ransom?)
   26. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:28 PM (#1765371)
Well, for a team that was leading off Corey Patterson followed by Neifi Perez if I were a Cub fan (shudder) I would be pretty pleased to have a guy like Pierre hitting in front of Derek Lee and Aramis Ramirez.

Assuming the Dusty understands that Juan should be hitting leadoff. ;)

The Cubs may have overpaid, but I think if you are Jim Hendry you see an aging Cardinal team, an Astros team one key injury away from oblivion, and you figure you could win this thing.
   27. RB in NYC (Now Semi-Retired from BBTF) Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:32 PM (#1765378)
I agree w/my Yankee brethren, and I think the key is that I'm (maybe "we're") impressed by the restraint of the team this offseason. I'd hate to give up much of anything for a guy like Pierre and like seeing that the team is being judicious in its pursuit of help.

This sums up my feelings nicely, espcially as many rumors seemed to be that the Marlins were asking for Cano in return for Pierre. I think perhaps Pierre + Womack > Cano + Crosby but I imagine the level of player you have to replace Crosby with to swing it to the Yankees' advantage is not high
   28. 1k5v3L Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:42 PM (#1765392)
well, at least hendry is opening up slots on the 40 man roster. better to send these kids to acquire a player who'll fill a need than have to waive them in a few days to make room for the reliever de jour--and get only the proverbial ptbnl in return...
   29. zonk Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:42 PM (#1765393)
If you forgot 2005 so quickly, you have my congratulations.

I've blocked it out. My memory of 2005 is that the Cubs were allowed to play without an OF until Murton came up in August.
   30. dcsmyth1 Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:42 PM (#1765397)
---"I think that .365 projection will be high by about 15-20 points."

Last year Pierre had on "off-season". But his walk rate and SLG/BA rates were the same or better than his career rates. So, to me, the most likely explanation for his 2005 slippage was bad luck on balls-in-play. His projection of .302/.365/.371 with 48 SB seems entirely reasonable to me. The only "bad" part of that is the .371 SLG, but 1) he won't have many runners on base to drive in, and 2) his good OBA will help pass whatever RBI opps he gets onto the next batters.

Pierre is just fine. I can't comment on those pitching prospects they gave up, but the Cubs have solved 2 big problems for 2006 with 1 move--the leadoff problem, and the C Patterson problem.
   31. chris p Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:46 PM (#1765401)
But I stand by my suspicion that a move to Wrigley isn't going to do a lot to help Pierre recover from a disappointing 05...unless they mow down that IF jungle (which - if we're going to have to suffer with Neifi at SS and if Walker is truly to be traded and Cedeno/Hairston split 2b, might be a good idea).

wait a second. dusty insists on playing all the slap and dash hitters and they don't mow the grass? are you serious? wow. get an the same page, fellas!
   32. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:48 PM (#1765405)
I can see the case that this package is too much

Yup. I really liked Nolasco, though I have soured a bit on Pinto.

Assuming the Dusty understands that Juan should be hitting leadoff. ;)

I assume you're being tongue in cheek. The Cubs are paying through the nose because they think a lack of a leadoff hitter was their biggest problem last season.

well, at least hendry is opening up slots on the 40 man roster.

This is true but the loss of Nolasco really chaps my ass.

Pierre is just fine.

That's true, he is a pretty good player and he keeps them from taking the Corey Patterson development track with Pie. As Andere points out, the Cubs are (supposedly) getting Pierre and I'm sure it will be with the intention of giving him a nice extension. I don't think that will be wise but, again, he's a pretty good player.

I don't think his style of hitting will take advantage of his new park, however.
   33. zonk Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:48 PM (#1765406)
I'd also like to make clear - my quarrel isn't so much with Pierre --- I still think he underperforms the projections, but I'll grant even if he repeats his 05, it's an upgrade.

My problem is that by including both Nolasco and Pinto, the Cubs have more or less forfeited their 2 best minor league chits (assuming Pie is untouchable) to acquire a singles hitter with little patience and no pop.

He's a very good singles hitter - but -
For this swag, Hendry should have netted a potential corner OF.

I would have been happy if Mitre, Pinto, and Nolasco had brought in Huff.

Hell, I'd feel better if it had brought in Kearns.

I'd feel REALLY good if it was the core of a deal for an Adam Dunn or the like (despite what the Reds say -- they're idiots if they think they'll be keeping Dunn once he can opt for FA.).

It's not so much that I'm opposed to acquiring Pierre - it's that I'd rather have seen these chits bring in a different kind of player.
   34. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:50 PM (#1765413)
dusty insists on playing all the slap and dash hitters and they don't mow the grass? are you serious?

It helps Aramis Ramirez become a poor 3rd baseman as opposed to an absolute disaster so it's not all bad :)
   35. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:52 PM (#1765416)
I am tentatively happy with this trade. You can't avoid making moves for fear that you will make a bad one. All along people have been saying the Cubs need to move some prospects -- they have too many, and the alternative is to put them on the ML team. None of the three should be starting for the Cubs this year. And it's not like Hendry stripped the system bare -- Hill, Guzman and Pawelek all rate higher than any of these three. Pierre fills our biggest need, and I don't seem him blocking Pie. If he gets signed to a 3-year or so contract, then the Cubs have insurance:

1) If Pie is ready, trade Pierre or move one of them to RF.

2) If Pie proves to be a bust, then we still have Pierre.
   36. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:53 PM (#1765418)
Pops:

I never post a Cubs remark without some degree of sarcasm. It's reflex. :)

Would it be absurd to think Murton goes to right field and the Cubs give Corey one final shot in left? I think freed to think only of offense and knowing his career is on the line the team might get lucky.

He is NOT an awful player. Just had an awful season. It happens.
   37. Lujack Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:58 PM (#1765424)
Does this mean the Cubs are no longer pursuing Milton Bradley? What happens to Corey Patterson?
   38. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:58 PM (#1765426)
Would it be absurd to think Murton goes to right field and the Cubs give Corey one final shot in left?

Murton throws like my grandmother using her off hand. There is no way an old-school organization like Chicago would put such a non prototypical RF'er in that position.

Additionally, Patterson top skill is his defense in center - where he is Pierre's superior. Corey will be traded for junk. Jim Bowden evidently likes him so he may go to Washington and push Wilkerson to an outfield corner.

He is NOT an awful player.

I think he would be awful in a corner but is decent in CF. He'll get a shot somewhere but it won't be in Chicago.
   39. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: December 07, 2005 at 03:59 PM (#1765430)
Does this mean the Cubs are no longer pursuing Milton Bradley?

I think they would still be interested in him for RF but I'm not sure they have the pieces to get him from the Dodgers anymore.
   40. Calvin Schiraldi Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:01 PM (#1765431)

Basically, the Cubs picked up Willie Wilson again, but this time at age 28.


I'd take age 28 Willie Wilson. He had a .350 on base averge, was 47-52 in stolen bases and scored 81 runs in 128 games.
   41. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:02 PM (#1765432)
That's not true, exactly. I don't think they can get Bradley without dealing someone they have heretofore classified as untouchable.
   42. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:04 PM (#1765434)
Pops:

I think Corey needs to have his areas of responsibilities whittled down to have a shot of re-capturing the magic. Playing a key defensive position AND hitting is too much right now.

Put him in left, tell him to hit, and hope for the best.

I still think he's got a .870 OPS season in there with some speed.

Bradley wants to be a centerfielder. He takes it personally. Playing him in right field sounds good, but the guy clearly has some definite ideas as to how he wants to be used.

Do you want an angry Milton on your roster???
   43. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:06 PM (#1765437)
Do you want an angry Milton on your roster???

Is there any other kind? You've seen Office Space, correct?
   44. zonk Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:07 PM (#1765438)
wait a second. dusty insists on playing all the slap and dash hitters and they don't mow the grass? are you serious? wow. get an the same page, fellas!

It's ALWAYS been that way... Wrigley's IF is notorious as the most grounder killing in the majors. Generally - the Cubs haven't had a lot of speed nor much range from their IF, so I think the organization has always looked at it as an equalizer... or at least used to - and no one's been smart enough to address the fact that Ron Cey, Larry Bowa, et al have long since left the team.

But even when one would think it would make sense -- for example, despite Dunston's issues, he had pretty good range... and between Grace, Sandberg, Dunston, and various decent 3B defenders (Vance Law, Steve Buchele, etc) -- the Cubs have stubbornly refused to mow down the IF lawn.

It plays very slow - always has.

Perhaps I'm making too much out of it - but I think for Pierre's BIPBA to rise, he'll need some help from the groundskeepers.

Like I said - if Walker gets dealt, it's inevitable that the Cubs MI, at least, will be relatively rangy. Rameriz has his issues, but I don't think lateral movement is one of them. Lee has good skills at 1B.

If there were ever a time to go with a lawn buzzut, this is probably the year.

The downside - in Williams, Zambrano, and Maddux - the Cubs may have 3 starters that benefit from slower grass... and it's not like they can just vary the height a half inch when Prior and Z throw back-to-back.
   45. dcsmyth1 Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:10 PM (#1765445)
----"I don't think his style of hitting will take advantage of his new park, however."

Here are some park indexes from 03-05

Index, Fla, Wrigley
LHB/BAvg, 97, 98
LHB/HR, 104, 104
E-infield, 69, 103
BB, 109, 104
SO, 113, 102

So the BAvg should stay about the same, with a few less BB, but a few more times reaching on error, and a few more BIP due to fewer SO. Seems like a wash to me. And if Wrigley causes Pierre to cut down his steal attempts, maybe his SB% will go up, say from 75% to 80%.
   46. Honkie Kong Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:12 PM (#1765448)
Milton from office space : apathetic
Eric Milton : pathetic
Milton Bradley : Apopletic
   47. Spahn Insane Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:14 PM (#1765450)
I agree, Harvey, that Patterson is decent (as a CF and bottom-third hitter) in a normal year, but I think even if he plays well, he's probably marginal as a corner OF, and I don't expect the Cubs to give him a chance to bounce back anyway. Besides, playing Patterson in a corner and Pierre in center would be a poor use of defensive resources; Corey's a better CF than Pierre. I see your point about letting him focus on offense, but I worry that that might put even more pressure on him to produce at the plate; playing CF was the thing he did WELL in his terrible '05, and I don't think being the CF was distracting him from his hitting anyway.

A trade involving Patterson seems inevitable at this point, if it wasn't already. Perhaps they can invovlve him in a package for Bradley or Wilkerson. That'd make me pretty happy.

I agree with most of what's been expressed here--Pierre's got his good points and his bad points, but on balance he's OK, and he should at least bring some stability (if not excellence) to the CF position and top of the order. (Of course, depending on how many years they end up committing to him, that stability could become a negative pretty quickly.) I think the package they're giving up seems like a lot. I don't expect Mitre to become more than a #4 and don't expect much at all of Pinto, but the more decent arms you throw into a deal, the greater the chance that deal comes back to haunt you.

And it's some consolation that this year's OF will almost certainly be better than last year's, damning with faint praise though that is.
   48. I Love LA (OFF) Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:15 PM (#1765452)
Man, Hendry rips off the Marlins again. First he trades a broken down Choi for an MVP candidate, and now junk for JP.
   49. Spahn Insane Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:18 PM (#1765463)
And Pops beats me to the punch on every one of my points, just about...
   50. zonk Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:20 PM (#1765468)
I don't think his style of hitting will take advantage of his new park, however.

Ha! Pops agrees with me. Case closed.

Re: Patterson
Is it true that Bowden's interested? (not suprising given his predilection for athletes masquerading as ballplayers). If so - is Wilkerson still out of favor in Washington? I'd package an awful lot with Patteron -- Hill, Guzman, Cedeno, you name it- to get Brad.
   51. Fear is Moses Taylor's Bacon Bits Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:21 PM (#1765472)
Man, Hendry rips off the Marlins again. First he trades a broken down Choi for an MVP candidate, and now junk for JP.

Let's see, I wasn't happy about the Lee/Choi trade at the time and it turned out ok.

I'm happy with this trade, so it's bound to bomb, right?
   52. Andere Richtingen Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:22 PM (#1765477)
I'd take age 28 Willie Wilson. He had a .350 on base averge, was 47-52 in stolen bases and scored 81 runs in 128 games.

And like Wilson, I expect Pierre to put together a decent year or two from here on out. That doesn't make this trade anything but a bad idea.
   53. Fear is Moses Taylor's Bacon Bits Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:23 PM (#1765479)
Is it true that Bowden's interested? (not suprising given his predilection for athletes masquerading as ballplayers). If so - is Wilkerson still out of favor in Washington? I'd package an awful lot with Patteron -- Hill, Guzman, Cedeno, you name it- to get Brad.

I've read some things that Bowden does want C-Pat and the Cubs want B-Wilk. I don't think the Cubs will have to add one of those 3 to that list, someone a little lower might get it done.
   54. zonk Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:25 PM (#1765484)
Let's see, I wasn't happy about the Lee/Choi trade at the time and it turned out ok.

Don't worry, Moses - I was apoplectic about the Choi/Lee swap, too... and I'm nearly as P.O'ed about this one.

Perhaps my double reverse karma whammy will cancel out your triple-axle jinx reverse vibe.... or something.
   55. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:26 PM (#1765489)
I'd package an awful lot with Patteron -- Hill, Guzman, Cedeno, you name it- to get Brad.

'Twas the rumor.

junk for JP

Junk?
   56. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:29 PM (#1765496)
And like Wilson, I expect Pierre to put together a decent year or two from here on out.

That's not a problem if he's a one year rental.

Which is unlikely.
   57. Spahn Insane Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:33 PM (#1765508)
Ha! Pops agrees with me. Case closed.

Yeah--you're in agreement with a guy who thinks a mid-80s Expos hat is the height of fashion. Can't argue with that. :)
   58. Andere Richtingen Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:37 PM (#1765514)
An interesting tidbit about Pierre I picked up from Al Yellon:


Career in day games: .344/.394/.429 in 1069 AB
Career in night games: .287/.337/.351

I'm still not putting a whole lot of stock in that, but it's intriguing.
   59. AROM Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:38 PM (#1765517)
Do you want an angry Milton on your roster???

Is there any other kind? You've seen Office Space, correct?


So to get a player who when on the field is an equal to Carlos Beltran, all the Cubs have to do is trade for him and make sure nobody steals his swingline stapler?
   60. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:39 PM (#1765519)
I will say this:

If Pie builds on his 2005 and the Cubs decide to let Pierre move on (getting a couple of draft picks in the process) this is a pretty good trade.
   61. Fred Garvin is dead and Joe Biden is alive Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:43 PM (#1765532)
And it's not like Hendry stripped the system bare -- Hill, Guzman and Pawelek all rate higher than any of these three.

Pawalek hasn't even pitched in Peoria, Guzman's highly doubtful to pitch 200 IP over the rest of his career, let alone in one season, and until Hill pinpoints his fastball and develops a decent change, he's still nothing more than a great LOOGY. Above all, TINSTAAPP.

I don't have a problem with the Cubs dealing pitching prospects, and Mitre and Wellemeyer are probably the first I would deal (because they are out of options), but Mitre + Pinto + Nolasco is quite a price for a guy that Florida is looking to dump and is overrated in the first place.


Pierre fills our biggest need, and I don't seem him blocking Pie. If he gets signed to a 3-year or so contract, then the Cubs have insurance:

1) If Pie is ready, trade Pierre or move one of them to RF.

2) If Pie proves to be a bust, then we still have Pierre.


Pierre does give insurance in case Pie never progresses, and from that standpoint, I like picking him up. OTOH, I hate the idea of signing him to a multi-year extension because he *would* block Pie.

Moving either Pie or Pierre to RF would be brutal -- we'd almost have a deadball offense.
   62. Spahn Insane Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:43 PM (#1765534)
So to get a player who when on the field is an equal to Carlos Beltran, all the Cubs have to do is trade for him and make sure nobody steals his swingline stapler?

Or asks him to turn down his radio. Uh-oh...Office Space Milton meets Sammy redux...
   63. Fred Garvin is dead and Joe Biden is alive Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:44 PM (#1765538)
Career in day games: .344/.394/.429 in 1069 AB
Career in night games: .287/.337/.351


That is interesting. Too bad the Cubs are planning on scheduling more night games. :-)
   64. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:48 PM (#1765547)
So to get a player who when on the field is an equal to Carlos Beltran, all the Cubs have to do is trade for him and make sure nobody steals his swingline stapler?

Maybe they're hoping he will burn down Wrigley so they can get a new stadium.
   65. Spahn Insane Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:49 PM (#1765553)
Moving either Pie or Pierre to RF would be brutal -- we'd almost have a deadball offense.

Hey--the White Sox won the world series while getting zero home runs out of left field. (That has to be a first, doesn't it?) Not that I recommend a popgun lineup as a building strategy.
   66. Spahn Insane Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:51 PM (#1765559)
Maybe they're hoping he will burn down Wrigley so they can get a new stadium.

Someone should program a virus to shave profits off the ticket-scalping operation and divert them to payroll.
   67. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:52 PM (#1765560)
I am still holding out hope that Doug Melvin throws pixie dust in Tommy LaSorda's eyes and the Crew gets Milton and a young pitcher for Brady Clark or Lyle Overbay.

I think Bradley will absolutely own 2006. Guy is talented and got to be motivated to show folks he isn't a bad man.

With the Dodgers sans GM I have to think it's Tommy Boy calling the shots. And we all know how well that worked out for LA last time. (evil chuckle)

Why do I think Enders is having night sweats while the Winter Meetings are happenning? He's gotta be worried that Tommy will orchestrate the stripping of the Dodger farm system.

It's 4 a.m. Do you know where your Edwin Jackson is??

Man, I'm so cruel.......
   68. Spahn Insane Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:52 PM (#1765561)
In any event, I don't know if Pie's going to hit enough to be a corner OF, but he certainly showed a spike in power last year. He's not a Pierre clone. (He might be a Patterson clone, as others have pointed out.)
   69. Spahn Insane Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:53 PM (#1765568)
Tommy Boy calling the shots in LA? Nah. It's Bill Plaschke.
   70. zonk Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:54 PM (#1765570)
An OF of Wilkerson, Pierre, and Murton would make me happy.

Together with A-Ram, Lee, Barrett, and league average production from 2B -- the Cubs might actually be able to overcome the balck hole of Neifi Perez, the entity from which no measurable offense can escape.
   71. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:55 PM (#1765572)
Perhaps Andy MacPhail can call in the Bobs to lay off Dusty.
   72. Fear is Moses Taylor's Bacon Bits Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:56 PM (#1765576)
With the Dodgers sans GM I have to think it's Tommy Boy calling the shots. And we all know how well that worked out for LA last time. (evil chuckle)

Sorry, Harv, LA has a GM. Ned Coletti (ass'n GM from SF, spent years in Chicago before that) has been in place for several weeks.

But then again, he's the guy that just hired Grady Little, so you still might get your wish afterall. A Bradley for Overbay trade seems about right, talent-wise, but Overbay still has more value than Crazy MB right now.
   73. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:56 PM (#1765578)
the Cubs might actually be able to overcome the balck hole of Neifi Perez, the entity from which no measurable offense can escape.

I hope they position him up the middle so that Aramis is outside of his event horizon.
   74. Artie Ziff Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:57 PM (#1765581)
Smart deal for Chicago. This obviously makes them better. They still need some hitting if they want to win 79 games next season.
   75. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: December 07, 2005 at 04:58 PM (#1765586)
Now that I think about it, Neifi did shave his head last year and, as Kip Thorne can tell you, black holes have no hair. That can't be coincidental.
   76. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: December 07, 2005 at 05:02 PM (#1765593)
Moses:

Arrrgh, that's right. Stupid of me.

Thanks.
   77. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: December 07, 2005 at 05:02 PM (#1765594)
>Pawalek hasn't even pitched in Peoria, Guzman's highly doubtful to pitch 200 IP over the rest of his career, let alone in one season, and until Hill pinpoints his fastball and develops a decent change, he's still nothing more than a great LOOGY. Above all, TINSTAAPP.

Right, and the same caveats apply to Pinto and Nolasco.
   78. Spahn Insane Posted: December 07, 2005 at 05:02 PM (#1765596)
black holes have no hair.

WTF?!
   79. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: December 07, 2005 at 05:04 PM (#1765600)
http://archive.ncsa.uiuc.edu/Cyberia/NumRel/BlackHoleEvolution.html
   80. VG Posted: December 07, 2005 at 05:13 PM (#1765628)
Basically, the Cubs picked up Willie Wilson again, but this time at age 28. Maybe they'll stumble bass-ackwards into a World Series title like the Royals did.

Don Denkinger aside, I don't see anything that was lucky about the late 1970s and early 1980s Royals teams. Between 1976 and 1985 and leaving out 1981 (in which year they are credited with a division title), they won the AL West six times in nine years and made two World Series appearances.

I am guessing that this was just a pithy throwaway line for you, or perhaps my sarcasm detector is malfunctioning in the cold today, but the 1985 Royals aren't an example of a catch-lightning-in-a-bottle team to me. Not even close.
   81. zonk Posted: December 07, 2005 at 05:19 PM (#1765641)
I hope they position him up the middle so that Aramis is outside of his event horizon.

Perhaps moving to Corey to RF wouldn't be such a bad idea.

It's entirely possible that after CP spent most of the 04 offseason talking about becoming more patient, he got stuck inside the Neifi black hole, and while the rest of us saw him flailing away all year --- in August, he was still trying to coax a walk out of a 3-2 count from an at-bat in the first week in April due to the time dilation effect of the Neifi anomaly.

It would be another log on the Pierre won't recover fire, though... unless his speed allows him to escape the gravitational pull.
   82. Andere Richtingen Posted: December 07, 2005 at 05:20 PM (#1765645)
I am guessing that this was just a pithy throwaway line for you, or perhaps my sarcasm detector is malfunctioning in the cold today, but the 1985 Royals aren't an example of a catch-lightning-in-a-bottle team to me. Not even close.

I wasn't talking about the late 70s Royals teams, I was talking about those of, say, '83 to '88, which I believe are similar to the current Cubs teams. The '85 Royals won 91, with a Pythagorean of 86-76, so yes, I think THAT team caught lightning in a bottle.
   83. 1k5v3L Posted: December 07, 2005 at 05:21 PM (#1765647)
here are the positives:

pierre will never clog the bases, and he can handle the heat in the outfield.

in dusty's mind, he's the second coming of jesus christ.
   84. Andere Richtingen Posted: December 07, 2005 at 05:23 PM (#1765648)
If Pie builds on his 2005 and the Cubs decide to let Pierre move on (getting a couple of draft picks in the process) this is a pretty good trade.

Three pretty good prospects for one year of Juan Pierre and draft pick(s)? That still sounds pretty bad to me.
   85. Charles S. will not yield to this monkey court Posted: December 07, 2005 at 05:27 PM (#1765654)
Man, Hendry rips off the Marlins again. First he trades a broken down Choi for an MVP candidate, and now junk for JP.

Don't forget stealing Clement and El Pulpo for Tavares. And who was that broken-down lefty he forced on the Marlins? Dontrell Something-or-other?
   86. Dewey, Crackpot and Soupuss Posted: December 07, 2005 at 05:32 PM (#1765664)
Thank god - the White Sox were rumored to be interested in Pierre.
   87. VG Posted: December 07, 2005 at 05:33 PM (#1765666)
I wasn't talking about the late 70s Royals teams, I was talking about those of, say, '83 to '88, which I believe are similar to the current Cubs teams.

But there were still significant components from the earlier run, such as Brett, White, McCrae, Wilson and Quisenberry, supplemented by a young starting rotation that included five pitchers who all had significantly long and at-least-decent careers. Maybe our definitions of bottled lightning differ. I don't see a ton of career years on the Royals, but maybe you can say they had some luck in terms of health, particularly in the rotation -- only four games in the regular season were started by anyone other than the top 5 starters.
   88. VG Posted: December 07, 2005 at 05:34 PM (#1765669)
in dusty's mind, he's the second coming of jesus christ.

In monetary terms, Pierre would certainly come cheaper than Damon.
   89. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: December 07, 2005 at 05:35 PM (#1765673)
Three pretty good prospects for one year of Juan Pierre and draft pick(s)?

But it's junk. OFF told me so.

I figure Pierre will add about 22 runs next year... :)
   90. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: December 07, 2005 at 05:40 PM (#1765688)
You're probably right, Andere. The loss of Nolasco is borderline unconscionable. There's a good chance he'll be a better major league player than Pierre in two years.
   91. Andere Richtingen Posted: December 07, 2005 at 05:47 PM (#1765700)
But there were still significant components from the earlier run, such as Brett, White, McCrae, Wilson and Quisenberry, supplemented by a young starting rotation that included five pitchers who all had significantly long and at-least-decent careers. Maybe our definitions of bottled lightning differ. I don't see a ton of career years on the Royals, but maybe you can say they had some luck in terms of health, particularly in the rotation -- only four games in the regular season were started by anyone other than the top 5 starters.

The '85 Royals were pretty bad offensively -- 13th in the league in R/G in a neutral ballpark -- but their pitching gelled nicely that year and it carried the day. This is what I would expect to happen if the Cubs were to pull it off somehow. Perhaps lightning in a bottle or stumbling bass-ackwards aren't the terms to use, but I mean a significantly flawed team going all the way.
   92. Weekly Journalist_ Posted: December 07, 2005 at 05:47 PM (#1765701)
Usually, I prefer my team to have better players, not worse ones
Clearly, you know what I meant. I'd rather have Crosby FOR FREE than Pierre for Cano.
   93. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: December 07, 2005 at 05:49 PM (#1765705)
<a href="http://chicago.cubs.mlb.com/NASApp/mlb/news/article.jsp?ymd=20051206&c>Cubs.com is reporting the Trib version of the trade.</a>
   94. VG Posted: December 07, 2005 at 05:56 PM (#1765713)
Perhaps lightning in a bottle or stumbling bass-ackwards aren't the terms to use, but I mean a significantly flawed team going all the way.

I can go along with the last part. The huge difference, though, is that the Royals had been a .500 or better team for a decade, with six seasons above 90 wins (7 out of 10 if you add in 1975). When the team performs at or just below a playoff level over an extended period of time, it's not that surprising to me that they broke through and won it all, even if it came in a year when they weren't as good, overall, as they had been in many of the previous seasons.

I was surprised to see how average the park factors were for Royals Stadium, incidentally.
   95. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: December 07, 2005 at 06:00 PM (#1765720)
I was surprised to see how average the park factors were for Royals Stadium, incidentally.

They moved the fences back. Unless you were talking about the 1980's.
   96. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: December 07, 2005 at 06:12 PM (#1765754)
I thought Harvey was joking that Tommy is still running the Dodger show, even with Ned on board. I guess not.

I think the Yankees should go for Corey. He can be bought cheap, told to play good CF. Bat ninth on the best offense in baseball, learn professional hitting from some of the best teachers in the game.
   97. H. Vaughn Posted: December 07, 2005 at 06:13 PM (#1765758)
Just because a guy is overrated doesn't mean he's not useful.

This is a great trade for the Cubs. Pierre's a lock for at least a .350 OBP, which would be the highest for a full season Cub's CF this century. Giving Baker a veteran, durable, obvious lead-off hitter means no more Neifi, Macias or Patterson leading off, a smart Dusty-proofing move by Hendry. Further, this may make it more likely that they will start Cedeno, since he won't have to bat leadoff. They're moving from a .300 OBP guy who wins you a couple games on defense to a .350 OBP guy who is defensively neutral to slightly below. I'll take the extra runs.

None of the traded guys was going to crack the rotation in the foreseeable future short of a boating accident. Mitre, the furthest along of the trio, was about eighth on the depth chart without even counting Wood. The AA-repeater guys both pitched well with good ratios, just as Felix Sanchez, Courtney Duncan, Chris Gissell and Kyle Lohse did once upon a time. They may turn out to be something or they may turn out to be Chris Gissell. The Cubs are risking potential rotation upside performance in 2007 while gaining performance certainty in CF for 2006.
   98. VG Posted: December 07, 2005 at 06:13 PM (#1765760)
Pops, yeah, that's what I meant, the park factors duing the 1975-1985 run for the Royals. That park always had a reputation as a pitcher's park. I was only looking at overall PFs. Maybe the rep came because it significantly suppressed homers, but other factors (taking the extra base because of the expansive outfield gaps) may have offset that.
   99. greenback likes millwall Posted: December 07, 2005 at 06:14 PM (#1765763)
A trade involving Patterson seems inevitable at this point, if it wasn't already.

I expect him to be non-tendered in two weeks. I don't see how Patterson has any trade value, but I also didn't see anyone throwing $55 million at A.J.F. Burnett.
   100. Grunthos Posted: December 07, 2005 at 06:17 PM (#1765768)
Don't underestimate the power of waving an athletic outfielder in front of Jim Bowden. I could easily see the Cubs getting Wilkerson for Patterson + a random, decent AA arm. If the prospect is good enough, it might even be beneficial for the Nats to make such a deal, since they're not going to be competitive next year.
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