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— A Timely Look at Transactions as They Happen

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Astros - Acquired Villarreal

Houston Astros - Acquired P Oscar Villarreal from the Atlanta Braves for OF Josh Anderson.

Villarreal was an exciting name about 5 years ago after bursting on the scene in relief for Arizona as a 21-year-old.  He even successfully made it through getting nailed with two line drives in as many weeks, one in the leg and one in the chest.  But he needed elbow surgery in 2004, shoulder surgery in 2005, and he came back as a serviceable middle reliever and not the top closer that a lot of people believed he could be (I personally liked Valverde better at the time, though he had a similar up-and-down career until last season).

And if serviceable middle reliever is part of your resume, forwards it immediately to Ed Wade. In this case, while I generally think Wade puts too much of a priority on the lesser member of his bullpens, I do think this is a decent move on his part.  Villarreal is still young, not very expensive, and he did fairly well last season (better in 2006).  The Astros just acquired an outfielder that, just like Anderson, is a speedy centerfielder that hit well in limited time in the majors but not previously since A-ball.  I think Willie Harris is the better player and one hopes the Braves that wouldn’t start the season with two Harrises on the roster.  Strangely, a little like Ryan McGuire (though he’s smaller than McGuire), he looks quite different from what you would think from his statistics - he’s not some muscle-bound hulk, but he’s not some little scrawny guy either.

Is it just me or have there been more trades than usual pre-winter meetings?

2008 ZiPS Projection - Josh Anderson
          AB   R   H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO SB   BA   OBP   SLG
Projection   590 71 158 21 4   2 46 30 87 31 .268 .312 .327
Opt. (15%)  626 88 178 27 6   4 61 38 81 41 .284 .335 .386
Pes. (15%)  337 34   82 10 2   0 20 13 57 14 .243 .279 .285
Top Comps: Rick Manning, Jose Tartabull

2008 ZiPS Projection - Oscar Villarreal
        W   L   G GS   IP   H   ER HR BB SO   ERA
Projection 3   2 58   0   82   83   38 10 26 58 4.17  
Opt. (15%)  4   2 67   0   97   91   37   9 27 73 3.43
Pes. (15%)  2   3 48   0   66   72   35   9 25 43 4.77
Top Comps:  Paul Quantrill, Dave Rozema

Dan Szymborski Posted: November 17, 2007 at 03:00 PM | 7 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. Der Komminsk-sar Posted: November 17, 2007 at 04:48 PM (#2618423)
Gregor Blanco > Josh Anderson. I don't like this deal.
   2. Cabbage Posted: November 17, 2007 at 06:23 PM (#2618500)
Cuauhtemoc Blanco > Gregor Blanco
   3. Honkie Kong Posted: November 17, 2007 at 06:36 PM (#2618513)
Well he is better than Harris in that he is cost controlled, a better base stealer, and probably a better defender.
I don't see how he is better than Blanco, might have more speed. Still a guy with options, and 1 more year before he becomes rule v eligible?
As someone on BravesJournal pointed out, if this means the end of the Pete Orr era, it might be worth it anyway.
   4. Der Komminsk-sar Posted: November 17, 2007 at 07:04 PM (#2618528)
Harris v. Anderson: Harris is more versatile (do we still give him credit for being able to play in the infield? He's not really doing it much anymore, but I'm not aware of why he couldn't?) and a better hitter. Also, while Anderson is certainly cheaper now and for some time to come, it's not like Harris is expensive.
Anderson v. Blanco: Anderson is a much better baserunner (both are quite fast, Anderson slightly more so, but Blanco does a lot of dumb stuff out there - the CS being only part of the problem). Both are really good on d, Blanco has shown a larger platoon advantage (he's been awful versus lefties). Blanco has shown a willingness to draw a walk, unlike Anderson - though some of that would dissipate v. big league pitchers who would challenge him. Neither guy has power. I think Blanco is a wee bit younger. I think Anderson has one more option than Blanco, but that's a ways off for both of them. Neither is Rule 5 eligible (as they're on the 40).

What I don't get is why have 3 lefty centerfielders with no power at the top of your org - you'd only would want one of the three in the bigs at a time, I'd think...
   5. Mike Emeigh Posted: November 17, 2007 at 07:35 PM (#2618559)
That makes two of these deals, where a team acquires a player who isn't significantly different from the player they already have - there is really no substantive difference between Bourn, Anderson, and Blanco.

-- MWE
   6. shoewizard Posted: November 17, 2007 at 08:34 PM (#2618606)
Is it just me or have there been more trades than usual pre-winter meetings?

The product of a thin free agent market.
   7. 1k5v3L Posted: November 20, 2007 at 04:41 AM (#2620904)
Ed Wade, ready to strike again, according to rotoworld:

According to Tracy Ringolsby of the Rocky Mountain News, the Astros and Kaz Matsui are close to a deal.

It's been a bad month for Lance Berkman owners. The Astros are going to have Michael Bourn leading off and Matsui likely batting second most of the time. Matsui's career OBP away from Coors Field is .308. Chris Burke is easily the better bet offensively, though Matsui is clearly superior defensively. A platoon, with Matsui sitting against lefties, could be rather productive. Still, the Astros again will disappoint when it comes to getting guys on base for Berkman. Nov. 19 - 10:36 pm et
Source: Houston Chronicle

Ed Wade's love for middle relievers has turned into love for middle infielders...

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