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Transaction Oracle
— A Timely Look at Transactions as They Happen

Thursday, July 14, 2005

A’s - Acquired Kennedy

Oakland A’s - Acquired P Joe Kennedy and P Jay Witasick from the Colorado Rockies for OF Eric Byrnes and SS Omar Quintanilla

Damn move has to be announced after I close the Transaction Oracle Supercomputer.

Nice set of moves by the A’s now that they’ve found a good home for Byrnes.  They’ve essentially turned an injury risk reliever who was now probably 4th on their rightly bullpen depth chart and Quintanilla for Joe Kennedy and a replacement reliever.

Quintanilla is still an interesting project.  Being of a more powerful figure than the typical shortstop prospect with a Spanishy-sounding last name, the A’s were really hoping he’d turn on the power this season for the Rockhounds (and a great hitter’s park).  He’s been good, but not great and he does have upside, so not a bad pickup for the Rockies.

Kennedy has no star potential, but provides nice insurance for the rotation.  The ERA is ugly, but he did pitch very well for the Rockies in ‘04.  After all, does anyone like Ryan Glynn being the insurance policy?  Except maybe Ryan Glynn?  Byrnes likes Oakland a lot, but he can console himself with the fact that Coors is better than the lottery for B+ outfielders.

2005 ZiPS Projection - Joe “Not *That* One” Kennedy
—————————————————————————————-
Period     W   L   G GS   IP   H   ER HR BB SO   ERA
—————————————————————————————-
Actual ‘05   4   8 16 16   92 128   72 12 44 52 7.04
Rest ‘05   4   4 13 12   73   75   37   8 28 44 4.56
—————————————————————————————-
Total ‘05   8 12 29 28 165 203 109 20 72 96 5.95

 

2005 ZiPS Projection - Jay Witasick
—————————————————————————————-
Period     W   L   G GS   IP   H   ER HR BB SO   ERA
—————————————————————————————-
Actual ‘05   0   4 32   0   35   27   10   2 12 40 2.52
Rest ‘05   1   1 22   0   27   23   11   2 10 26 3.67
—————————————————————————————-
Total ‘05   1   5 54   0   62   50   21   4 22 66 3.02

 

2005 ZiPS Projection - Eric Byrnes
——————————————————————————————————
Period     AB   R   H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO SB   BA   OBP   SLG
——————————————————————————————————
Actual ‘05 192 30   51 15 2   7 24 14 27   2 .266 .336 .474
Rest ‘05   199 38   62 16 2   8 30 18 33   1 .312 .380 .533
——————————————————————————————————
Total ‘05 391 68 113 31 4 15 54 32 60   3 .289 .358 .504

Dan Szymborski Posted: July 14, 2005 at 03:31 AM | 31 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. 6 - 4 - 3 Posted: July 14, 2005 at 04:01 AM (#1470522)
Byrnes is a B+ outfielder? Wow, I thought grade inflation was rampant in public high schools.
   2. Old Matt Posted: July 14, 2005 at 04:11 AM (#1470532)
Wow, ZiPS loves Byrnes' chances at Coors.
   3. jordan Posted: July 14, 2005 at 04:14 AM (#1470537)
Can someone explain to me why Witasick was cut by Baltimore in spring training. This is the third straight year that his K rate is at least 8K/9 innings. Why weren't teams more interested in him in the offseason? He did get better this season but not by that much.
   4. Bored Posted: July 14, 2005 at 04:18 AM (#1470552)
The Rockies aren't going to play Byrnes in center, are they? Oof that wouldn't be pretty.
   5. Riki Tiki Javy Lopez Posted: July 14, 2005 at 04:31 AM (#1470594)
How are Byrnes' doubles and homers not increasing with the roughly 60 point jump in SLG?
   6. We don't have dahlians at the Palace of Wisdom Posted: July 14, 2005 at 04:33 AM (#1470601)
uh, the near sixty points in batting average?
   7. Miko Supports Shane's Spam Habit Posted: July 14, 2005 at 04:48 AM (#1470633)
What's Byrne's contract status? He'll be arb-eligible, right? If so, I assume he'll be non-tendered this off-season.

I would have hoped for more for Witasik--or am I underestimating Quintanilla?

The Rockies aren't going to play Byrnes in center, are they? Oof that wouldn't be pretty.

My guess for CF the rest of the way: Sullivan and Mohr.
   8. Old Matt Posted: July 14, 2005 at 04:54 AM (#1470643)
Dan, do you have a non-Coors prediction for Byrnes. Say, a Yankee Stadium one?
   9. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: July 14, 2005 at 05:13 AM (#1470663)
How are Byrnes' doubles and homers not increasing with the roughly 60 point jump in SLG?

uh, the near sixty points in batting average?

I just feel compelled to point this out:

380 - 336 = 44
312 - 266 = 46
   10. esseff Posted: July 14, 2005 at 05:21 AM (#1470678)
What's Byrne's contract status? He'll be arb-eligible, right? If so, I assume he'll be non-tendered this off-season.


Byrnes was already arbit.-eligible last winter and, assuming no multiyear contract, will continue to be for two more years before he becomes FA eligible. He entered the current season with 3 years, plus 75 days of service time.
   11. Andy Aymeloglu Posted: July 14, 2005 at 06:28 AM (#1470751)
I would have hoped for more for Witasik--or am I underestimating Quintanilla?

Funny, I felt the opposite. I personally feel like he's a better long-term second base prospect than Pennington. Guess the A's have seen alot more of them than I have.
   12. Athletic Supporter can feel the slow rot Posted: July 14, 2005 at 07:19 AM (#1470771)
I don't really see the point of these moves. All of the players involved are not very good except possibly for Quintanilla and Bradford. Payton = Byrnes; Witasick and Kennedy are meh.

I'm not gonna lose sleep over it, the difference is minimal (I doubt Q will ever be an above-average major league player), but it just seems like randomly pushing pieces around. Byrnes is at least popular; none of these other players appear to bring actual substantial value to the table.

Byrnes made some comment like "Billy and Macha and I didn't really see eye to eye at the end there," I wonder what that is about.
   13. Nasty Nate Posted: July 14, 2005 at 12:52 PM (#1470869)
Do they now trade Witaskick to a contender?
   14. AROM, Instagram Gangsta Posted: July 14, 2005 at 01:05 PM (#1470875)
I hope nobody else picks up Eric Byrnes before I can get him in fantasy.

He's as good or a bit better hitter than Payton, and Payton went wild when he was in Coors. Plus the Rockies will let him steal a few bases too.
   15. Harold can be a fun sponge Posted: July 14, 2005 at 01:12 PM (#1470877)
How are Byrnes' doubles and homers not increasing with the roughly 60 point jump in SLGBA?

Because the Coors projection is not a straight-line projection of this year; it's based on his history. Basically ZIPS is saying that Byrnes is hitting for higher ISO this year than he would be projected to. So maybe he's projected to hit 275/330/450 in a neutral park; then the park adjustment takes him to 312/380/533.
   16. Mikαεl Posted: July 14, 2005 at 01:17 PM (#1470884)
I don't really see the point of these moves. All of the players involved are not very good except possibly for Quintanilla and Bradford. Payton = Byrnes; Witasick and Kennedy are meh.

Payton > Byrnes.

To paraphrase a classic Internet baseball jerk - those things on the ends of the players' arms are called "gloves."
   17. Traderdave Posted: July 14, 2005 at 01:57 PM (#1470958)
I know all about Byrnes' shortcomings, but dammit, I love the guy. He's a pleasure to watch and by all acounts a good guy off the field. He'll be missed in Oakland. The LF bleachers won't be nearly as fun anymore.
   18. Danny Posted: July 14, 2005 at 02:23 PM (#1471002)
I hope nobody else picks up Eric Byrnes before I can get him in fantasy.

A great idea, thank you.

I don't really see the point of these moves. All of the players involved are not very good except possibly for Quintanilla and Bradford. Payton = Byrnes; Witasick and Kennedy are meh.

Byrnes is a better hitter than Payton, but I don't think it comes close to making up the 20-30 run advantage Payton has in the field. I still don't understand where Payton will fit into the A's outfield shuffle. Will he start over Kielty against LHP? Against RHP? Will Swisher continue to playe everyday? I think he should. Perhaps Swisher will play more 1B, with Hatteberg sitting.

Witasick could, as he's shown the past few years, be very good or very blah. Bradford would make some sense in the A's 7-man bullpen, and he's around an extra year. The Rockies signed Witasick to a minor league deal, so he'll be a free agent at the end of the season. Any chance the A's get compensation for him? Maybe they'll spin him to another team?

I don't like losing Quintanilla, who was a pretty decent prospect coming into the year. Sickels gave him a B+. Dayn Parry had him listed as the 37th(!) best prospect in baseball. Prospectus gave him an honorbale mention on their top 50 list. BA had him as the A's 8th best prospect. He's certainly lost some of that shine, as 23 year olds (he turns 24 in October) should be slugging better than .400 in the Texas League. Still, he's got a shot to be a nice, cheap 2B for a few years.

Kennedy certainly has potential. His minor league numbers were fantastic (381 K, 96 BB), and he was very good last year (4.19 dERA in Coors). He'll likely be making $2MM+ next year which seems a bit much for a project for the A's. WIth Harden, Haren, Blanton, Saarloos, Meyer, and Cruz all competing with Kennedy for spots in the rotation next year, I would assume the plan is to trade Zito this offseason.
   19. Ben Posted: July 14, 2005 at 02:32 PM (#1471026)
Why was Oakland so eager to acquire Kennedy? I know Dan is lumping the two trades together as a minor upgrade, but it seems the team's quality peaked after the Bradford-for-Payton deal. Byrnes presumably had trade value, why did it cost him and a prospect to get a starter with a 7 ERA and a very run of the mill reliever?

The Byrnes-> Payton upgrade is minimal, Bradford for Witasick is a wash, and Quintanilla for Kennedy is the real change. Trading a prospect in midseason for a guy with a 7 ERA? That's a horrible move.
   20. JMM Posted: July 14, 2005 at 02:36 PM (#1471033)
I know all about Byrnes' shortcomings, but dammit, I love the guy. He's a pleasure to watch and by all acounts a good guy off the field. He'll be missed in Oakland. The LF bleachers won't be nearly as fun anymore.

Amen. Byrnes lack of instinct combined with his crash test dummy soul was enjoyable, in a ricketty rollercoaster threatening to fall apart at any given moment sort of way. It's a poor defense that manages to actually be thrilling in addition to usual exasperating. He really should have been a shortstop.

Well, maybe not.
   21. Danny Posted: July 14, 2005 at 03:01 PM (#1471095)
Why was Oakland so eager to acquire Kennedy?

He had a 100 ERA+ entering the year. Cheap, average starting pitchers are pretty useful. Also, Kennedy's peripherals aren't as terrible as his ERA this year, as his .359 BABIP is killing him.
   22. Walt Davis Posted: July 14, 2005 at 04:01 PM (#1471289)
Sorry, I just don't see the point of all this for the A's.

OK, Kennedy's an average-ish lefty starter who will be fairly cheap over the next couple years. Well, right now the A's don't have any openings in their rotation unless they've given up hope on Blanton or have decided Saarloos' hypnotic spell is about to wear off (not unreasonable). Plus they had a fairly cheap average-ish lefty starter in Redman. Trading a good prospect (albeit less promising than he looked) and a serviceable ML OF for rotation depth is not a good move.

Now back when they got Redman, I thought that meant the end of Zito and/or Mulder. Picking up Kennedy would make it easier to trade Zito I suppose.

I guess to sum up, I just don't see much upside in this trade for the A's but considerable downside if Quintanilla develops.
   23. Tanto Posted: July 14, 2005 at 04:16 PM (#1471342)
What's the point of Quintanilla for the Rockies? He's a good prospect, but I was under the impression that the Rockies' infield of the future was Helton-Barmes-Nelson-Stewart. Is Barmes the utility infield or what?
   24. Nuclear Dish Posted: July 14, 2005 at 04:16 PM (#1471343)
Can someone explain to me why Witasick was cut by Baltimore in spring training.

Because Beattagan, in their infinite wisdom, decided that Todd Williams was more worthy, since he hadn't allowed a run in ST.

personally, I'd be thrilled right now with Witasik taking innings away from Steve Reed. But who knew then that the Steves would be so horrific?
   25. DCA Posted: July 14, 2005 at 04:27 PM (#1471368)
What's the point of Quintanilla for the Rockies? He's a good prospect, but I was under the impression that the Rockies' infield of the future was Helton-Barmes-Nelson-Stewart. Is Barmes the utility infield or what?

The thing about prospects is they don't all develop. Having another option if Barmes hits like he need every year expect 2 months in 2005, or if Nelson never pans out, is never a bad thing.
   26. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: July 14, 2005 at 05:05 PM (#1471506)
He's a good prospect, but I was under the impression that the Rockies' infield of the future was Helton-Barmes-Nelson-Stewart. Is Barmes the utility infield or what?

And they just drafted Troy Tulowitski.
   27. akrasian Posted: July 14, 2005 at 05:30 PM (#1471571)
I like the series of trades for Oakland.

I'd rather have Payton than Byrnes. For this season at least I'd rather have Witasick over Bradford.

Kennedy looked like he'd be solid as a minor leaguer. As someone mentioned, his career ERA+ prior to this season is 100, which is certainly acceptable, especially since he's played with two franchises not exactly known for having good pitching coaches. I'm not big on Quintanilla - his walk rate is blah, he's not very good defensively, and his power has disappeared this year, despite playing in a severe hitter's park in a hitter's league. He could always rebound, but I'd be more optimistic about Kennedy becoming a decent middle of the rotation guy going forward than Quintanilla becoming a decent major leaguer, frankly.
   28. Danny Posted: July 14, 2005 at 05:32 PM (#1471578)
OK, Kennedy's an average-ish lefty starter who will be fairly cheap over the next couple years. Well, right now the A's don't have any openings in their rotation unless they've given up hope on Blanton or have decided Saarloos' hypnotic spell is about to wear off (not unreasonable).

According to Forst, Kennedy will serve as the second lefty/long man in the bullpen this year, and compete for a spot in the rotation next year (presumably when Zito is gone). He'll have some competition, but that's not a bad problem to have.

Plus they had a fairly cheap average-ish lefty starter in Redman.

Sure, but he's not there anymore.

Trading a good prospect (albeit less promising than he looked) and a serviceable ML OF for rotation depth is not a good move.

I think it's arguable whether Byrnes is much above replacement level. He's a career .249/.322/.416 hitter against RHP, including .218/.298/.373 this year. UZR had him at -24 last year in LF, and Tango's true talent UZR had him at -17 in CF. He seems like an mediocre platoon OF or a good platoon DH. He'll be arb-eligible for the second time this offseason, and he would probably have been non-tendered.

I guess to sum up, I just don't see much upside in this trade for the A's but considerable downside if Quintanilla develops.

I think the upside would be Kennedy becoming a decent starter for a couple million bucks. The Rockies certainly have more upside in Quintanilla, though, considering his age and (lack of) service time.
   29. Walt Davis Posted: July 14, 2005 at 05:58 PM (#1471644)
According to Forst, Kennedy will serve as the second lefty/long man in the bullpen this year, and compete for a spot in the rotation next year (presumably when Zito is gone). He'll have some competition, but that's not a bad problem to have.

It's not a bad problem to have, but it's also not worth trading real talent AND paying a few M a year for.

I think the upside would be Kennedy becoming a decent starter for a couple million bucks.

Well, Kennedy already makes $2.2 M. With his performance this season, he can't expect much of a raise in arbitration I suppose, but the next two years are likely to cost the A's about $6.5 M ... unless he stinks which would cost the A's $2.5 M and some wins. Something tells me the A's are going to non-tender him in hopes of signing him for a couple years at a lower salary.

[Byrnes will] be arb-eligible for the second time this offseason, and he would probably have been non-tendered.

That's probably true, but something tells me there's a good chance Kennedy would have been non-tendered by the Rockies (or whoever) too.

These haven't been bad trades and they're unlikely to blow up on Oakland, but they're pretty pointless trades which leave the team at best a smidgen better in the short term....assuming they don't start Payton full-time.
   30. Spivey Posted: July 15, 2005 at 01:19 AM (#1473128)
I liked Quintanilla a lot when he was with Texas. Still, he's definitely old for his level (and getting to the point where he's old for a prospect period) and not getting any better. I thought he had good defense when I saw him in college, not sure what scouts think.

Anyways, I think we're talking about a MI who'll put up .275/.330/.380 with solid defense. He could help, but I think his destiny is a quality backup MI. I think this is how BA (or at least the writer who did the Oakland chat) had him pegged. I felt that was too harsh at the time...now the opinion has grown on me.
   31. Ivan Grushenko of Hong Kong Posted: July 15, 2005 at 05:41 AM (#1473853)
As rotten as Byrnes is statistically, I'll still miss him. I love his energy. Quintanilla I don't care about.

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