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Friday, April 18, 2014

Pirates Acquire Ike Davis From Mets

I had to make sure Zack Thornton wasn’t Zach Stewart, but does it matter?

A long-awaited deal has finally been struck, as the Mets officially dealt first baseman Ike Davis to the Pirates in exchange for minor league righty Zack Thornton and a player to be named later…

For New York, the departure of Davis means that the club will move ahead with Lucas Duda as its regular first baseman, a role that he had taken on early in 2014. It also marks the end to an ultimately disappointing tenure in New York for the 27-year-old, left-handed hitting slugger.

Meanwhile, the Pirates will take on the $3.14MM left on Davis’s 2014 salary, and will control his rights via arbitration through 2016. Davis will presumably work in some form of platoon with the right-handed hitting Gaby Sanchez…

Thornton is a 25-year-old reliever who was working in Triple-A this season after reaching that level late last year for the first time.

The District Attorney Posted: April 18, 2014 at 07:55 PM | 57 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: ike davis, mets, pirates, trades, transactions, zack thornton

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   1. Arbitol Dijaler Posted: April 18, 2014 at 08:15 PM (#4688875)
There's no question but that Ike is about to rattle off a string of 40-HR seasons, but Sandy probably knows that. Thornton's minor league peripherals are eye-popping, but Twitter describes him as a "soft tosser," which may mean somebody who can work over immature hitters.
   2. billyshears Posted: April 18, 2014 at 08:22 PM (#4688876)
Apparently the PTBNL is a significant piece. According to John Heyman, FWIW.
   3. Arbitol Dijaler Posted: April 18, 2014 at 08:24 PM (#4688878)
That would be nice. I hope they're thinking about using the savings towards Drew, because Tejada is just putrid on both sides of the ball.
   4. Russlan is fond of Dillon Gee Posted: April 18, 2014 at 08:26 PM (#4688879)
I am glad the Mets made this trade even though it isn't a great return. I would have preferred a similar level of prospect but a position player.

The Mets have another guy in AAA that is tearing it up, Allan Dykstra, and he was the Eastern League MVP last year. He probably is a decent bet to be a non-awful option at first base if Duda flops or gets injured.

I hope Duda can prove to be a solid option at this position.

Carlos Delgado's reign as the all-time Met leader at first base wrt homers.
   5. Sweatpants Posted: April 18, 2014 at 08:27 PM (#4688881)
   6. tshipman Posted: April 18, 2014 at 08:31 PM (#4688883)
I am glad the Mets made this trade even though it isn't a great return. I would have preferred a similar level of prospect but a position player.


I'm surprised the Mets got anything at all. Ike Davis is a guy hitting .200, following up a year where he hit .200. He looks like a guy who in his best case scenario might just barely be average and who has a lot more downside than upside.
   7. billyshears Posted: April 18, 2014 at 08:32 PM (#4688884)
Meanwhile, the Mets are getting no-hit by Aaron Harang.
   8. JE (Jason) Posted: April 18, 2014 at 08:59 PM (#4688903)
The Mets have another guy in AAA that is tearing it up, Allan Dykstra, and he was the Eastern League MVP last year. He probably is a decent bet to be a non-awful option at first base if Duda flops or gets injured.

Wow, I didn't know Dykstra was about to turn 27.
   9. Nasty Nate Posted: April 18, 2014 at 09:29 PM (#4688935)
I'm surprised the Mets got anything at all. Ike Davis is a guy hitting .200, following up a year where he hit .200.


You write that as if it's two seasons of hitting .200, when it's just one in any meaningful sense.
   10. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: April 18, 2014 at 09:49 PM (#4688957)
Apparently the PTBNL is a significant piece. According to John Heyman, FWIW

.
It's Lastings Milledge.
   11. The District Attorney Posted: April 18, 2014 at 09:57 PM (#4688962)
So as a 26-year-old¹ RP who is just making the majors now, Thornton is kind of like Betances minus a few MPH and inches of height...

It's hard to be excited about this, but I guess we'll see who the PTBNL is, never mind how the hell Ike does, which I have no clue about. It certainly has to be a relief for Duda that he is finally being asked to do what he is best suited to do: play 1B every day against righties. Whether that will mean anything in terms of his performance, I don't know.

I hope there's something in this for the Mets, anyway, because I had Travis Ishikawa in HACKING MASS, so this devastates my team.

¹ Thornton's birthday is a month from tomorrow.
   12. billyshears Posted: April 18, 2014 at 10:15 PM (#4688972)
It's Lastings Milledge.


I still think he can make it.
   13. PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth) Posted: April 18, 2014 at 10:21 PM (#4688974)
Apparently the PTBNL is a significant piece. According to John Heyman, FWIW.


So... it's either someone currently on the DL or someone drafted last year, then, no? Should narrow the field.

Davis might put it together in a platoon role, but in the dream scenario Davis becomes a clone of a player the Pirates already have (Pedro Alvarez). The team badly needs someone who can get on base once in a while. This trade doesn't help.

Edit: That's a little harsh; Davis does take some walks. The average is so low that it only works out to a league average OBP.
   14. base ball chick Posted: April 18, 2014 at 10:44 PM (#4688983)
the way the mets have talked bad about ike davis for so long i am surprised anyone at all wanted him, and more surprised gave back anything for him
   15. AJMcCringleberry Posted: April 18, 2014 at 11:04 PM (#4688986)
I was hoping for this all offseason. I think a Duda/Satin platoon will be good.

I had Travis Ishikawa in HACKING MASS, so this devastates my team.

Me too.
   16. Russlan is fond of Dillon Gee Posted: April 18, 2014 at 11:13 PM (#4688991)
Wow, I didn't know Dykstra was about to turn 27.

Well, he was drafted 5 picks after Davis so he's been a disappointment as well. He's not a real prospect, just a AAAA guy who could probably post a 100 OPS+ against righties if Duda gets hurt.
   17. PreservedFish Posted: April 18, 2014 at 11:55 PM (#4689002)
My favorite Mets thread


I think all of my comments were entirely reasonable.
   18. Dan Posted: April 19, 2014 at 12:37 AM (#4689010)
So... it's either someone currently on the DL or someone drafted last year, then, no? Should narrow the field.


Or it could be a situation where it's one player if Davis plays well and another if he hits like he did last year again. The "significant piece" quote could be referring to the player the Mets will get if Davis doesn't implode again.

Even with last year's numbers dragging his career line down, Davis is a career .256/.357/.471 hitter against RHP, which is good for a 128 wRC+. The mistake the Mets made was starting him everyday and not hitting for him late in games against lefty relievers. Davis is just utterly hopeless against LHP with a .202/.267/.331 career line (66 wRC+). I would expect Davis to be quite productive if he's properly platooned with Gaby Sanchez.
   19. Walt Davis Posted: April 19, 2014 at 04:17 AM (#4689024)
.256/.357/.471

NL average 1B last year was 283/357/497. So, with the platoon split, he's average. (I can't find position platoon splits.)

I find it hard to believe the Pirates will give up anything else of significance here if they are eating all the money. Granted, the notion that how much the Mets get will depend on how well he does is reasonable.

   20. Walt Davis Posted: April 19, 2014 at 04:32 AM (#4689025)
sakes alive ...

it's not clear he's any better than Daniel Murphy (who's only 2 years older)

2011-13

ID: 230/324/431, 110 OPS+, 10 Rbat, 2.4 oWAR, 2.4 WAR in 1100 PA
DM: 296/334/419, 110 OPS+, 21 Rbat, 7.7 oWAR, 6.0 WAR in 1700 PA

(admittedly, I thought Murphy to 2B was a pipe dream but it's worked out OK, scary defense and all)

You shouldn't write him off but nobody should be confident that he's substantially better than Mike Jacobs. Baseball's a cruel game.

ages 24-26

ID: 230/324/431, 110 OPS+, 10 Rbat, 2.4 oWAR, 2.4 WAR in 1100 PA
MJ: 268/327/490, 111 OPS+, 13 Rbat, 2.0 oWAR, 0.0 WAR in 1100 PA

I thought God only hated Cub fans this much.
   21. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: April 19, 2014 at 04:34 AM (#4689026)
So as a 26-year-old¹ RP who is just making the majors now, Thornton is kind of like Betances minus a few MPH and inches of height...


Sure, if by a "few MPH", you mean 5-10 on any given day.

He does get a lot of ground balls (in part due to the arm angle).
   22. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: April 19, 2014 at 04:37 AM (#4689027)
So... it's either someone currently on the DL or someone drafted last year, then, no? Should narrow the field.


PP seems to think that it might be Blake Taylor or Cody Dickson. For me, that would be an overpay, but it sounds plausible given the Pirates' gaping hole and the Mets' inflated demands over the offseason.
   23. spycake Posted: April 19, 2014 at 08:09 AM (#4689030)
Advice for Mets fans from a Twins fan: don't get your hopes up for Duke Welker as the PTBNL. Apparently the Pirates reconsidered and liked Duke's baseball name enough to snatch him back from us, and in return gave us the rather pedestrian named Kris Johnson...
   24. RMc is a fine piece of cheese Posted: April 19, 2014 at 08:11 AM (#4689031)
Funnily enough, I just got the new OOTP game yesterday, and ran a test season for 2014. Ike Davis led the NL in HR.
   25. asinwreck Posted: April 19, 2014 at 09:45 AM (#4689045)
It matters whether a trade chit is Zach Stewart or not. I am sure he is a perfectly nice young man whose appearance from a bullpen causes the shoulders of that team's fans to slump in quiet acceptance of the shellacking that is certain to come.
   26. formerly dp Posted: April 19, 2014 at 10:23 AM (#4689050)
Unless it's just a question of salary, I don't understand the decision to keep Duda over Davis. Davis is a decent glove, and they both have huge question marks with the bat. I don't think anyone expects Duda to have a 40-homer season in him, but at least with Davis, there's a glimmer of hope.

Is it too soon to worry if Granderson is Jason Bay Part II? This is not working out well so far. And in the black hole that is SS news: Flores has been playing almost exclusively at SS in Vegas. He wasn't hitting much to start the season (got called up for a couple of days while Murph was out), but has heated up over the last few days. With the way he's going, I doubt Tejada has more than a couple of weeks left before he's out of a job. D'Arnaud's line isn't very good at this point, but he has looked a lot better over the last week. But between him (.488), Tejada (.488), and Granderson (.555), they have 3 total black holes in the lineup right now. Tough to win like that.
   27. bobm Posted: April 19, 2014 at 11:06 AM (#4689057)
[19] from BR PI Event Finder - All of MLB: 13801 Plate Appearances in 2013, As 1B and as LHB

.263/.339/.440/.779
   28. bobm Posted: April 19, 2014 at 11:11 AM (#4689060)
.261/.337/.436/.773 all PA as 1B

.257/.332/.429/.761 RHB PA as 1B
   29. PreservedFish Posted: April 19, 2014 at 12:36 PM (#4689077)
Is it too soon to worry if Granderson is Jason Bay Part II?


Weren't you worried about this before Opening Day?

25. Lassus Posted: December 06, 2013 at 02:58 PM (#4612347)
I want to be optimistic about Grandy, who is an awesome personality, but I admit I fear we are paying for an ugly and apparent decline show.
26. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: December 06, 2013 at 03:31 PM (#4612404)
That salmon must've been really good.
27. PreservedFish Posted: December 06, 2013 at 03:31 PM (#4612405)
25 - me too.


I left comment #26 just because.
   30. billyshears Posted: April 19, 2014 at 12:37 PM (#4689078)
Is it too soon to worry if Granderson is Jason Bay Part II?


Even if it is, I'm right there with you.
   31. valuearbitrageur Posted: April 19, 2014 at 01:41 PM (#4689113)
I think all of my comments were entirely reasonable.

I believe he leads the league in UZR. Plus, I know he's good, because I watch him, and he's good.


His UZR dropped from 12.4/150 to 2.4/150 now, so this comment was only mildly reasonable, not entirely reasonable.

sakes alive ...

it's not clear he's any better than Daniel Murphy (who's only 2 years older)

2011-13

ID: 230/324/431, 110 OPS+, 10 Rbat, 2.4 oWAR, 2.4 WAR in 1100 PA
DM: 296/334/419, 110 OPS+, 21 Rbat, 7.7 oWAR, 6.0 WAR in 1700 PA

(admittedly, I thought Murphy to 2B was a pipe dream but it's worked out OK, scary defense and all)

You shouldn't write him off but nobody should be confident that he's substantially better than Mike Jacobs. Baseball's a cruel game.

ages 24-26

ID: 230/324/431, 110 OPS+, 10 Rbat, 2.4 oWAR, 2.4 WAR in 1100 PA
MJ: 268/327/490, 111 OPS+, 13 Rbat, 2.0 oWAR, 0.0 WAR in 1100 PA

I thought God only hated Cub fans this much.


Two more jacks last night. Go away, troll.


He showed you!

Too bad he hasn't been back the last 2 years. Ironically, he went away.
   32. CFBF Is A Golden Spider Duck Posted: April 19, 2014 at 01:57 PM (#4689121)
Gold Star also mentioned in that thread that he traded Davis for Freddie Freeman in his sim league. Gold star for Gold Star, I guess.
   33. formerly dp Posted: April 19, 2014 at 02:12 PM (#4689126)
Weren't you worried about this before Opening Day?
Did I agree with Lassus? Because that's never a good idea.
   34. Walt Davis Posted: April 19, 2014 at 07:07 PM (#4689335)
#26-27 ... thanks but I was hoping to find LHB 1B vs RHP to compare to Davis's vs RHP splits. I'm guessing, but don't know, that his line is not particularly good relative to that. Not that it matters much.
   35. bobm Posted: April 19, 2014 at 07:34 PM (#4689344)
[34] All of MLB: 10367 Plate Appearances in 2013, As 1B, as LHB and vs. RHP

.271/.352/.464/.815
   36. Baseballs Most Beloved Figure Posted: April 19, 2014 at 10:08 PM (#4689417)
Funnily enough, I just got the new OOTP game yesterday, and ran a test season for 2014. Ike Davis led the NL in HR.
Send Markus an email telling him that you found a bug in the new edition.
   37. Walt Davis Posted: April 19, 2014 at 11:18 PM (#4689446)
You da man Bob

ID: .256/.357/.471
AV: .271/.352/.464

So he's exactly average against RHP for an LHB 1B. Adjust for 2013 average vs. Davis career (in usually higher offense contexts) but close enough.
   38. Ray (RDP) Posted: April 20, 2014 at 12:45 AM (#4689477)
This seemed like such a dumb intentional walk by Terry Collins in the top of the 9th with his team trailing by 1 run:

Jose Valverde pitching for New York ATL NYM
J Valverde relieved D Matsuzaka. 4 3
J Schafer hit for D Carpenter. 4 3
J Schafer safe at first on error by pitcher J Valverde. 4 3
J Heyward struck out swinging, J Schafer stole second. 4 3
B Upton fouled out to catcher. 4 3
F Freeman intentionally walked. 4 3
J Upton homered to center (418 feet), J Schafer and F Freeman scored. 7 3


I get that the lefty--righty splits involved (for Valverde, Freeman, and Upton) are significant, but you're also putting a critical runner on base to face a guy who is a good hitter himself. That doesn't make any sense to me. (Of course, it made perfect sense to Howie Rose and the other Mets' radio announcer, who went on and on about how Freeman has killed the Mets so "you can't let him beat you." Who the hell cares who "beats you"? A loss is a loss.)
   39. Arbitol Dijaler Posted: April 20, 2014 at 10:41 AM (#4689561)
Farnsworth has been named the closer. I guess that job is reserved for scrap-heap guys now.
   40. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: April 20, 2014 at 11:15 AM (#4689569)
My favorite Mets thread


Jesus, Freeballin' comes across as a complete psycho in that thread.
   41. billyshears Posted: April 20, 2014 at 11:18 AM (#4689572)
Farnsworth has been named the closer. I guess that job is reserved for scrap-heap guys now.


Other than Familia, all we have are scrap heap guys. I'd like to give the job to Familia, but he hasn't exactly been setting the world on fire.
   42. formerly dp Posted: April 20, 2014 at 11:19 AM (#4689573)
Farnsworth has been named the closer. I guess that job is reserved for scrap-heap guys now.
Depressing. But I think expecting Valverde to pitch competently in that role required a bit of kool-aid drinking.
   43. formerly dp Posted: April 20, 2014 at 12:59 PM (#4689634)
This seemed like such a dumb intentional walk by Terry Collins in the top of the 9th with his team trailing by 1 run:
Also, given the L/R splits, and the fact that Freeman has killed the Mets this year and throughout his career, I think 'dumb' might be an oversell.

Here's Freeman career against RHP:
.306/.381/.510 (2014, Bondsian .442/.538/.744)
Here's Upton:
.274/.343/.461 (2014, .333/.386/.608)
So there's some logic at work here. The bigger problem is that Valverde sucks (4 HR in 8.1 IP this year), and the Mets don't have a ton of better options.

   44. PreservedFish Posted: April 20, 2014 at 02:17 PM (#4689674)
Here's Freeman career against RHP:
.306/.381/.510 (2014, Bondsian .442/.538/.744)
Here's Upton:
.274/.343/.461 (2014, .333/.386/.608)


I'll take the career splits please, and I don't see a big enough advantage there to make the move. I think Ray is correct.
   45. Ray (RDP) Posted: April 20, 2014 at 03:09 PM (#4689706)
Also, I was listening on the radio so I didn't see Young's hit in the bottom of the 9th with runners on second and third, but it was a hit to CF so I'm assuming Wright would have scored from second if he was the tying run. Of course, the 3B coach didn't send him because they were trailing by two, not one.

So Collins's move to put Freeman on really wrecked the Mets. And yet Collins didn't get a single question about the intentional walk in the first dozen or so I heard from his postgame interview on the radio. Instead, predictably, the simpletons focused on Valverde, and whether Granderson is "pressing," and whether Collins thought Duda's ball was a home run off the bat. My god we have a long way yet to go before we get intelligent analysis from these people.
   46. Los Angeles El Hombre de Anaheim Posted: April 20, 2014 at 03:33 PM (#4689726)
So there's some logic at work here. The bigger problem is that Valverde sucks (4 HR in 8.1 IP this year), and the Mets don't have a ton of better options.
This. I watch the entire top of the ninth, and when Freeman came up and got four wide, I thought, "Okay, I can see this."

The 3-run homer only wrecked the game because the Mets came up with 2 in the bottom of the inning, but the Mets were already losing. The decision that would have mattered wasn't whether or not to pitch to Freeman instead of Upton, but whether Valverde should have been allowed to face either.
   47. formerly dp Posted: April 20, 2014 at 04:39 PM (#4689769)
the simpletons focused on Valverde, and whether Granderson is "pressing," and whether Collins thought Duda's ball was a home run off the bat.
It was a gamble. All moves are gambles. Some work out. Collins has a heavy preference for having the platoon advantage, which doesn't make him unique among contemporary managers, but does help to explain the strategy. Again, I think there's a case to be made for either decision, I just think calling the decision Collins made 'dumb' is a bit of post-hoc grandstanding. He picked his poison, and he picked wrong. Like El Hombre said, Valverde's the bigger problem here-- a closer who gives up a homer every other inning should simply not have the title. Or a roster spot, but desperate times and all that...
   48. Walt Davis Posted: April 20, 2014 at 06:46 PM (#4689838)
I probably walk Freeman there, at least if I'm sticking with Valverde. The key run is the one on 2B which will put me down 2. Being down 3 or 4 is not much worse than being down two. I'll take the platoon advantage. I certainly don't want Valverde pitching to Freeman so the other option is to use my LOOGY.
   49. formerly dp Posted: April 20, 2014 at 07:34 PM (#4689869)
maybe this should be in the "how to build a winner" thread, but (via the Mets official twitter):
Bobby Abreu is expected to join the #Mets prior to tomorrow's game. Abreu was hitting .395 with 1 HR, 9 RBI in 15 games with Las Vegas (AAA)
As much as I love to watch EY run, and even though he's drawing some walks, they can't live with a punchless .215 average out of their LF.
   50. Ray (RDP) Posted: April 20, 2014 at 07:40 PM (#4689871)
Like El Hombre said, Valverde's the bigger problem here-- a closer who gives up a homer every other inning should simply not have the title. Or a roster spot, but desperate times and all that...


I agree that Valverde is the bigger problem.

As much as I love to watch EY run, and even though he's drawing some walks, they can't live with a punchless .215 average out of their LF.


And yet Collins sees Young and thinks, "Yes, this is the player I want batting most often for my team." Collins sees the steals and the speed and gets fooled into thinking Young is a leadoff hitter.

   51. Dan Posted: April 20, 2014 at 07:51 PM (#4689879)
Valverde has huge platoon splits. If you're going to leave him in to try and finish the inning, then walking Freeman is the right move to make.

Valverde from 2011-2013:

vs LHH: .248/.348/.397
vs RHH: .176/.243/.253

He's not as good as either of those numbers now since he's been in decline, but he's still far more effective against RHH.
   52. RMc is a fine piece of cheese Posted: April 20, 2014 at 08:22 PM (#4689909)
First Valverde ruins my Tigers, then my Mets. I fully expect him to time-travel back to 1976 and pitch for my little league team.
   53. Russlan is fond of Dillon Gee Posted: April 20, 2014 at 08:39 PM (#4689922)
And yet Collins sees Young and thinks, "Yes, this is the player I want batting most often for my team." Collins sees the steals and the speed and gets fooled into thinking Young is a leadoff hitter.


The Mets don't have a lot of good hitters and the good hitters they do have aren't great leadoff options. Who would be a better leadoff option? Also, Chris Young and Lagares have both been out. The Met offense is going to be weak, especially if D'Arnaud and Granderson continue to struggle.
   54. Canker Soriano Posted: April 20, 2014 at 09:15 PM (#4689940)
First Valverde ruins my Tigers, then my Mets. I fully expect him to time-travel back to 1976 and pitch for my little league team.

This is the funniest thing I've read on this site in a year. Cheers.
   55. formerly dp Posted: April 21, 2014 at 08:51 AM (#4690084)
The Mets don't have a lot of good hitters and the good hitters they do have aren't great leadoff options. Who would be a better leadoff option? Also, Chris Young and Lagares have both been out.
Pretty much this. Collins has to roll with the players he's dealt. Even with his struggles, EYoung's gotten on base at a .342 clip, and has stolen 10 bases. With Chris Young down, Collins wasn't forced to choose between Lagares and one of the Youngs-- which saved him, honestly, because I think he was set to go with EY over Lagares. Lagares has made a strong case for owning the job, but if both of the Youngs get hot, he may be crowded out. Chris has no business starting against RHP though...

Check out EY's nearly identical career platoon splits (he's a switch hitter):
Vs. RHP: .251/.326/.333
Vs. LHP: .265/.326/.336

And because I know everyone's hot for an update, Flores is back on track at AAA-- .375/.484/.667 in his last 6 games, after a slow start, playing pretty much exclusively at SS.
   56. Arbitol Dijaler Posted: April 21, 2014 at 02:40 PM (#4690418)
Lagares's most recent Tweet:

much better thank God.... #today #after #work #to #eat #banana #and #drink #water#por #un#tubo mucho…



I think I like this guy.
   57. Srul Itza Posted: April 21, 2014 at 09:44 PM (#4690736)
4th Inning: Ike Davis (2) Grand Slam to right off Leake, McCutchen, Alvarez, Walker scored.

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