Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Transaction Oracle > Discussion
Transaction Oracle
— A Timely Look at Transactions as They Happen

Sunday, January 29, 2006

Indians - Acquired Marte, Michaels

Cleveland Indians - Acquired OF Jason Michaels from the Philadelphia Phillies for P Arthur Rhodes; acquired 3B Andy Marte, C Kelly Shoppach, and P Guillermo Mota for OF Coco Crisp, P David Riske, and C Josh Bard.

After about, say, 3 years of haggling over this trade, the initial reaction to the finaled version is “It’s about time!” rather than “What a blockbuster!”

Being the cordial Yankee disliker that I am (though not a Red Sox fan), it pleases me quite a bit that George Steinbrenner opened his pocket for the best centerfielder available in the free agent market and, yet, still won’t have a centerfielder as good as the one replacing his big offseason grab in Boston.  Like his predecessor, Crisp isn’t as good a defender in centerfield as you would think and has a rather noodly arm.  Still, who can’t like a guy named Coco Crisp?

Heck, even if I didn’t like watching him play, I’d have a hard time not liking the guy who helpfully bailed me out of one of my earlier controversial projections - projecting him at 304/365/406 in his first full season after a rather bland cup of coffee.  Crisp and Troy Percival always provide a soothing balm when I remember some of the projections that went horribly awry!

Since the Red Sox gain Riske and apparently don’t lose Mota, the bullpen surplus becomes even larger.  The Red Sox are going to make some more moves unless they’re willing to send some good pitchers to the minors or go with a 14 man pen.

[OOPS, turned out Mota was in there after all - damn you CBS! -DS]

Mota for Riske is probably a fairly even swap - Riske is more likely to be healthy with Mota probably having a bit more upside.

The Red Sox lose Marte, but you have to give value to get value, most of the time at least, and truth be told, Marte’s a very good prospect, but he’s not David Wright or Ryan Zimmerman.  The Indians will love to have him with the loss of Crisp being lessened by sending out Arthurly for Jason Michaels and Aaron Boone being, well, the player that Aaron Boone is.  Cleveland has some young pitchers they just don’t know what to do with, if the Jason Johnson signing is any indication, and might use the surplus their to fill the pen after losing Riske and Rhodes.

The Phils, well, they pick up another reliever and lose a valuable bench guy.  They don’t need Michaels as much with Aaron Rowand in center, but I’d wager they could still have found 300 at-bats for him if they wanted to.  On the plus side, while they don’t throw with the same hand, every reliever the Phils pick is one less bullpen spot they can fill by not using Madson in the rotation.

That just leaves essentially Kelly Shoppach.  Let’s face it.  Kelly Shoppach is probably just stopgap starter/backup catcher material at this point (as is Josh Bard, ZiPS is sniffing airplane glue) and even if he were a little better, Jason Varitek is in the way.  Shoppach can have value, but he’s going to have low BA value, so it’s not like he has a ton of trading potential.

Fun stuff all around.  Some paint this as a Mark Shapiro coup, but it’s merely a very good trade for the Red Sox and Indians, with both teams filling needs.  Kinda “meh” for the Phils.

2006 ZiPS Projections
——————————————————————————————-
Player       W   L   G GS   IP   H   ER HR BB SO   ERA
——————————————————————————————-
Mota       6   4 69   0   83   72   35   6 32 70 3.80  
Rhodes       3   2 49   0   44   37   18   4 18 45 3.68
Riske       4   3 64   0   71   68   35 10 24 63 4.44

 

2006 ZiPS Projections
———————————————————————————————————
Player     AB   R   H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO SB   BA   OBP   SLG
———————————————————————————————————
Bard       300 33   83 16 0   8 45 28 48   0 .277 .338 .410
Crisp     610 101 196 36 5 14 92 49 76 19 .321 .370 .466
Marte     416 59 100 24 2 19 64 62 94   0 .240 .339 .445
Michaels   275 39   77 14 1   6 31 44 57   2 .280 .383 .404  
Shoppach   390 51   86 22 0 19 49 40 127   0 .221 .301 .423

 

Dan Szymborski Posted: January 29, 2006 at 02:24 AM | 51 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Related News:

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. Ben Posted: January 29, 2006 at 02:47 AM (#1842090)
No ZiPs for Micheals?

And ESPN sez Mota is going to Cleveland.
   2. Bernal Diaz has an angel on his shoulder Posted: January 29, 2006 at 02:55 AM (#1842100)
Mota is part of the deal Dapper Dan.
   3. nycfan Posted: January 29, 2006 at 03:30 AM (#1842138)
Like his predecessor, Crisp isn't as good a defender in centerfield as you would think

Just wondering why you say this. Most metrics seem to rate Damon pretty well. Also, i'll take the under on that Crisp projection (could just be wishful thinking, cause i'll just about kill myself if he hits that well).
   4. Darren Posted: January 29, 2006 at 03:38 AM (#1842146)
Wow, if Bard is really going to be that good, I may have to change my perception of this trade from 'good because it fills an obvious hole' to just plain 'good.' Crisp's #s are very pretty as well, but about what JoelW had guessed over in ST.
   5. Darren Posted: January 29, 2006 at 03:40 AM (#1842148)
And Riske just looks crappy, which is pretty much what you'd expect from a guy who gives up a jillion HRs each year and whose K rate fell off the table last year. I see Mota as likely to be a bit better than him if healthy.
   6. Biff, highly-regarded young guy Posted: January 29, 2006 at 03:43 AM (#1842153)
.321/.370/.466? In Fenway I know, but yes, please!
   7. SABRJoe Posted: January 29, 2006 at 03:49 AM (#1842162)
So Bard's going to have a career year? Cool.

If Crisp puts up that projection and slightly improves his power over the life of his Red Sox career, I'll die a happy man.
   8. PhillyBooster Posted: January 29, 2006 at 03:52 AM (#1842167)
They don't need Michaels as much with Aaron Rowand in center, but I'd wager they could still have found 300 at-bats for him if they wanted to.


Certainly, but those 300 at-bats can just as satisfactorily be shifted to Shane Victorino, who should put them to equally good use.

Meanwhile, it's getting harder and harder to figure out exactly whose roster spot Ryan Franklin will be taking.
   9. catomi01 Posted: January 29, 2006 at 05:57 AM (#1842328)
the only question to me is why not just trade mota for michaels?
   10. PJ Martinez Posted: January 29, 2006 at 07:06 AM (#1842360)
"the only question to me is why not just trade mota for michaels?"

1. Mota was pretty bad last year. There's no reason we should think Gillick rated Mota (or anyone else tradeable from the Boston bullpen, for that matter) as highly as Rhodes. Others might, but that's not the issue.

2. Michaels is not the player Crisp is. Sure his OBP is pretty, but it comes in a small number of disproportionately vs. lefty ABs, and he's 30, and his numbers going back over his whole career are not that impressive. In fact, unless Cleveland gets Kearns or Marte blossoms this year (both seem plausible, especially the latter) than this trade could mean a downgrade for Cleveland in 2006, which I would guess is why Shapiro hesitated. I still think it's a great trade for CLE, but people seem to be over-rating Michaels a little.
   11. peter21 Posted: January 29, 2006 at 07:41 AM (#1842374)
That Crisp projection looks exactly right, actually---the difference in Fenway and Jacobs Field really is that big. It'll make this trade look a lot better for the Red Sox than it actually is. Oh park effects.

Michaels' disproportionate amount of ABs against lefties is overrated: 428 ABs against righties (with a .361 OBP) and 269 ABs against righties (.426 OBP). Both numbers are higher than Coco's OBP. Yes, Coco is better, but Michaels is not much of a downgrade for the Indians.

I don't know what to make of Mota, but Riske---solid as he is---is expendable. Andrew Brown can fill in adequately for him.

Bard is...what he is. Those numbers above look awfully high, but more power to him. Shoppach is probably more valuable to the Indians as trade bait...unless it means giving ANY at-bats to Einar Diaz.

Marte is better than Boone now, not to mention in the forseeable future. Yes, Red Sox Nation is going to love Coco, and yes, the Red Sox are better now. But this is still an excellent trade for the Indians.

Boy oh boy, if they trade Jake Westbrook for Austin Kearns and then sign Jeff Weaver to a 1 or 2-year deal...wow.
   12. GregD Posted: January 29, 2006 at 07:55 AM (#1842381)
Based on Michaels' splits, he might well do fine in an everyday role. Perhaps his weaknesses will be exposed, but I kind of doubt it.

Michaels' limitation, though, is that he has no power. His slugging percentage last year was lower than Jimmy Rollins' or Mike Lieberthal's or Kenny Lofton's. If he had an average (for an outfielder) slugging percentage to match his excellent on-base-percentage, then he'd be a heckuva player. Unfortunately he has a pretty lousy slugging percentage.

Crisp last year had a 119 OPS+ at age 25, Michaels a 108 OPS+ at age 29, in many fewer appearances. That suggests, to me, that the Indians are likely to see a notable downgrade at that position.

Michaels is one of those guys who is so underrated that he becomes overrated by his defenders. He has one excellent strength, his OBP, and that also causes him to be overrated compared to players with broader but more dispersed talents.
   13. peter21 Posted: January 29, 2006 at 08:16 AM (#1842391)
Michaels is definitely not as good as Crisp, and his lack of power significantly hinders his talents. This is the answer to Red Sox Nation's question of "Why didn't we just trade Mota for Michaels?"

BUT, a guy with a reasonable (indeed, likely) chance of putting up a .370+ OBP is quite valuable---not as long-term valuable as Crisp, but the significant increase in OBP should negate some of the loss of power...especially with the power the Indians have in the lineup (Sizemore, Peralta, Hafner, Martinez, Blake, Marte, Broussard could all conceivably hit 20 homers or more---even in Jacobs Field).

I'm not trying to argue that Michaels is as good as Crisp, he's not. But Michaels, in 2006, is likely to be only marginally less valuable than Crisp was in 2005 to Cleveland. The downgrade from Crisp to Michaels is also likely to be negated by the upgrade from Boone to Marte...assuming Marte gets 300+ ABs this year. Not to mention the marginal upgrade in Shoppach and Mota---and, of course, the huge upgrade long-term by acquiring Marte.
   14. Psychedelic Red Pants Posted: January 29, 2006 at 09:11 AM (#1842431)
Michaels is definitely not as good as Crisp, and his lack of power significantly hinders his talents. This is the answer to Red Sox Nation's question of "Why didn't we just trade Mota for Michaels?"

What would Michaels ZiPS in fenway? .390/.420?
   15. KRA Posted: January 29, 2006 at 10:14 AM (#1842468)
That projection for Crisp can't be right. Somehow he projects to have the exact same number of doubles, triples, homers, walks, and stolen bases as he would have had in Cleveland, and just gets 11 more singles? Hmmm.
   16. Phil Coorey is a T-Shirt Salesman Posted: January 29, 2006 at 10:21 AM (#1842471)
Just wondering why you say this. Most metrics seem to rate Damon pretty well. Also, i'll take the under on that Crisp projection (could just be wishful thinking, cause i'll just about kill myself if he hits that well).


His arm is beyond bad
   17. Dr. Vaux Posted: January 29, 2006 at 01:42 PM (#1842491)
What about Michaels's defense? I can't find anything about it.
   18. Tim Wallach was my Hero Posted: January 29, 2006 at 02:39 PM (#1842499)
Michaels' disproportionate amount of ABs against lefties is overrated: 428 ABs against righties (with a .361 OBP) and 269 ABs against righties (.426 OBP).

What would Michaels ZiPS againts switch pitchers?
   19. Dan Szymborski Posted: January 29, 2006 at 02:49 PM (#1842501)
I redid Crisp - must have goofed something - 323/372/480!
   20. GregD Posted: January 29, 2006 at 03:51 PM (#1842510)
Michaels has a mediocre/not bad-type of reputation among the chattering classes. Not seen as a liability but not as a strength. This stems mostly from the fact that he's not exceptionally fast, so he doesn't look in the field like the people commentators/radio talk show callers think of as really good center fielders.

Michaels looks great, though, on the defensive stats when I've looked them up. Sometimes even above Aaron Rowand.

I find it hard to believe he's one of the elite defenders around, but he doesn't make many mistakes and seems to position himself well, and I wouldn't be surprised at all if he's legitimately an above-average/ very good center fielder.
   21. Psychedelic Red Pants Posted: January 29, 2006 at 04:00 PM (#1842512)
Michaels looks great, though, on the defensive stats when I've looked them up. Sometimes even above Aaron Rowand.

Michaels' statistical record in CF (and in general) is small and spread out. I'd be skeptical of any conclusions drawn from that data.
   22. PooNani Posted: January 29, 2006 at 04:10 PM (#1842515)
In 2003 Crisp had 50 more points of OPS at Home
In 2004 Crisp had 80 more points of OPS at Home
In 2005 Crisp had 160 more points of OPS Away

It's not as if Jacobs Field changed its dimensions and sapped poor Crisp of his offensive game.

I'll eat my hat if he gets anywhere near that projection
   23. PJ Martinez Posted: January 29, 2006 at 04:18 PM (#1842517)
"The downgrade from Crisp to Michaels is also likely to be negated by the upgrade from Boone to Marte...assuming Marte gets 300+ ABs this year."

This I agree with. Marte has put up an 830+ OPS at every level he's been, and never stayed at one level more than a year. Granted those 57 ABs last year were bad, but he did get his feet wet. I think Marte, in 300+ ABs, could put up a 780 or so OPS next year, which would be a major improvement over what CLE got from 3B last season.
   24. buddy34 Posted: January 29, 2006 at 05:24 PM (#1842536)
there's something fundamentally wrong with any projection system that indicates bard will have a .338 OBP.
   25. Len Lansford, Carney Barker Posted: January 29, 2006 at 06:22 PM (#1842570)
Marte's line is enough over Boone-ian that I think he can cover the distance between Crisp and Michaels. And how does ZiPS figure that Josh Bard found Raffy Palmeiro's secret stash?
   26. Bernal Diaz has an angel on his shoulder Posted: January 29, 2006 at 06:36 PM (#1842586)
I just ran my NBDPOHA* prjojections and they have Coco hitting .435 with 82 HR and 234 RBI along with 145 SB, 45 Outfield Assists, plus he cures cancer, secures peace in the mideast and perfect nuclear fusion.
   27. Bernal Diaz has an angel on his shoulder Posted: January 29, 2006 at 06:38 PM (#1842590)
*=Numbers Bernal Diaz Pulled out of his ass.
   28. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: January 29, 2006 at 07:21 PM (#1842611)
I like the NBDPOHA numbers best.

It's not as if Jacobs Field changed its dimensions and sapped poor Crisp of his offensive game.

Coco's 3-year splits:

HOME: 275 / 319 / 409
AWAY: 323 / 370 / 518

Two half-seasons of info shouldn't outweigh a greater sample, no matter how much you want them to. And why would the fact that Jacobs Field kills the homer affect Coco Crisp any differently than any other hitter on earth? It seems to me like his home advantage would just be greater if it were a more neutral park.
   29. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: January 29, 2006 at 07:23 PM (#1842613)
In those first two years.
   30. PooNani Posted: January 29, 2006 at 07:31 PM (#1842620)
Two half seasons? Those 900 ABs should have just as much if not more value as the 594 last year. Get real.
   31. nycfan Posted: January 29, 2006 at 07:41 PM (#1842629)
I don't know where you got those stats from wolfram, but they're wrong. Here are his real 3-year splits:

Home: .282/.326/.415
Away: .296/.340/.440
   32. Psychedelic Red Pants Posted: January 29, 2006 at 07:43 PM (#1842632)
I just ran my NBDPOHA* prjojections and they have Coco hitting .435 with 82 HR and 234 RBI along with 145 SB, 45 Outfield Assists, plus he cures cancer, secures peace in the mideast and perfect nuclear fusion.

I bet he also comes up with a way to clone Chuck Norris.
   33. Dr. Vaux Posted: January 29, 2006 at 10:12 PM (#1842776)
Thanks, GregD and Inevitable, for the information on Michaels's defense.
   34. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: January 29, 2006 at 10:17 PM (#1842781)
I don't know where you got those stats from wolfram, but they're wrong. Here are his real 3-year splits:

I got them from ESPN; I don't know what happened.

Those 900 ABs should have just as much if not more value as the 594 last year. Get real.

He did not have 900 home at bats in two seasons. It's just not possible. I'm asserting that you are artificially breaking up three years worth of data. That's my point. Over many more at bats -- even by the stats that nycfan posted -- his home/road splits favor being on the road, and I'm not certain why a set of 162 games is somehow more conclusive than a set of 243. It doesn't make any sense to me.
   35. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: January 29, 2006 at 10:23 PM (#1842789)
Or however many damn games he played at home. I'm feeling a little iffy about the ESPN player cards at the moment, and I don't think B-R has that kind of info.
   36. Darren Posted: January 29, 2006 at 11:14 PM (#1842830)
I just ran my NBDPOHA* prjojections and they have Coco hitting .435 with 82 HR and 234 RBI along with 145 SB, 45 Outfield Assists, plus he cures cancer, secures peace in the mideast and perfect nuclear fusion.

Looks like CFBPS has some competition.
   37. NBarnes Posted: January 30, 2006 at 02:15 AM (#1843119)
I redid Crisp - must have goofed something - 323/372/480!


I'll take the under on that. As a Sox fan, I really don't like this. Bard is not as valuable as Shoppach, and ZiPS is on something stronger than airplane glue with Bard's projection. Dumping Mota is a win, as I believe he has fatally succumbed to reliever volitility and was baffled that the Sox insisted on getting him from Florida. And as much as I like Crisp and think he'll out perform Damon next year, I liked Marte a lot (one of my worries for the Sox is what they'll do when Ramirez and Ortiz decline at the same time, which will happen sometime in the next three years. Marte should have been part of the plan for Boston's next-gen middle-of-the-order).

But if Crisp hits that projection, I'll live with it.
   38. Dr. Vaux Posted: January 30, 2006 at 02:31 AM (#1843134)
My god, Boston's next middle-of-the-order will come from the free-agent racks, just like their current one did. Miguel Cabrera, Jason Bay, Adam Dunn, guys like that.
   39. Mark Shirk (jsch) Posted: January 30, 2006 at 03:00 AM (#1843161)
The biggest test will be Crisp's ability to playt CF. IF the stats I have seena re right, the Red Sox jsut downgraded at least a Win in CF.
   40. peter21 Posted: January 30, 2006 at 06:53 AM (#1843454)
A .323/.372/.480 line is basically the exact approximation (like small crowd, haha) of what Coco did in 2005 with the Indians, just translated to Fenway Park. Seems reasonable to me (and I say this speaking as an Indians fan).

My god, Boston's next middle-of-the-order will come from the free-agent racks, just like their current one did. Miguel Cabrera, Jason Bay, Adam Dunn, guys like that.

Exactly. And every relatively cheap piece that they add to their team frees up more money to spend on the free agents. The Sox are smart enough to (usually) spend on the right free agents. Having a productive Coco Crisp, Kevin Youkilis, Dustin Pedroia, Jon Papelbon, Jon Lester, Josh Beckett, etc etc for less than market value allows them to pay for the middle-of-the-order guys.

I'd rather have Marte than Crisp, and likely so would the Red Sox. But given their current situation as well as their long-term status, this was the right deal for them. Both teams won this trade.
   41. xfactor Posted: January 30, 2006 at 11:25 PM (#1844467)
If Marte's so hot, why did the Atlanta Braves and Boston Red Sox trade him? The surface reasons are fairly compelling, but fact is, two smart franchises traded Marte.

I don't doubt that Marte projects as a major leaguer, but will he be a top-drawer 3B/hitter? I kind of doubt it, or the Braves would've kept him and made it work.

Another telling sign came after the Red Sox got Marte and Gammons did a profile on the kid. You would've thought Marte walked on water. Right then you knew Marte was a good candidate to be dealt. It reminded me of when Gammons used to wax rhapsodic about Red Sox prospects such as Carlos Pena, Adam Everett and Tony Armas shortly before they werre traded. Last I checked, none of them are on the road to Cooperstown. Indians fans might want to temper their expectations of greatness.
   42. Morph Posted: January 31, 2006 at 08:52 PM (#1845626)
Yeah Dan, because the Yankees really had the prospects to get Crisp.
   43. DL from MN Posted: January 31, 2006 at 09:22 PM (#1845669)
> If Marte's so hot, why did the Atlanta Braves and Boston Red Sox
> trade him? The surface reasons are fairly compelling, but fact is,
> two smart franchises traded Marte.

And two other smart franchises traded valuable players FOR him.
   44. xfactor Posted: February 01, 2006 at 03:32 AM (#1846087)
We shall see on Marte. I'm skeptical that he'll be a great one. Hope I'm wrong. As I said, Gammons excels at pumping Red Sox prospects. Pena was a bust, Everett can't hit and Armas was brittle. Marte will stick in the bigs, but I doubt he'll be a great one.
   45. MM1f Posted: February 01, 2006 at 03:40 AM (#1846094)
In Gammos defense he was pumping Marte since Marte was in Myrtle Beach, and so were lots of people and many still are.
   46. xfactor Posted: February 01, 2006 at 08:09 PM (#1846734)
Good point. As a rule, I advise to be skeptical about Red Sox prospects he's pumped (another example will be H. Ramirez, who, contrary to the thick Gammo hype, won't be great).
   47. peter21 Posted: February 01, 2006 at 08:11 PM (#1846737)
We shall see on Marte. I'm skeptical that he'll be a great one. Hope I'm wrong. As I said, Gammons excels at pumping Red Sox prospects. Pena was a bust, Everett can't hit and Armas was brittle. Marte will stick in the bigs, but I doubt he'll be a great one.

The Indians have proven, under Mark Shapiro, that they are adept talent evaluators. This does not guarantee that Marte will work out, but it pretty much shows that they weren't solely listening to Gammons when deciding to trade for Marte.

Assessing players' abilities based on the fact that they were or weren't traded is an awfully round-about argument. Simply put, Marte was worth more to both teams as trade bait than as an actual player---Atlanta had a full outfield and a potentially HOF third-basemen who recently restructured his contract in the team's favor...I'd want to appease him, too, especially considering the Braves got Renteria on the cheap. Furthermore, the Sox have two viable 3Bs on their team, both locked up for at least two more years, and absolutely no one to play center field. Therefore, Marte was a lot more valuable as trade bait to get Crisp---not because Marte wasn't good, but because he wasn't as useful for the team in 2006.

Simply put, just look at this:
In 2005 in AAA, Marte had 389 at-bats. He posted numbers of .275/.372/.506 with 20 homers and 83/64 K/BB ratio. AND HE WAS JUST 21 YEARS OLD.

Furthermore, 2005 was not a fluke---Marte, despite being EXTREMELY young for his age (a very important factor when assessing prospects) has never posted an OPS of under .831 in a full season. Scouts love his power and defense, and he's shown excellent plate discipline for a young power hitter, even despite his strikeout totals.

If Marte develops (in the not-distance future) into a .280/.380/.520 hitter with 25 homers (a reasonable projection which he might even exceed), he would be one of the better third basemen in baseball. And the Indians have him for six years.
   48. xfactor Posted: February 05, 2006 at 03:05 AM (#1850538)
All good points about Marte, peter21.
Will say, some scouts are more skeptical than you state. Marte's arm injury raised some concerns. And like many young hitters, he was lost against major league breaking balls (all of the minor league success in the world is no guarantee that he'll solve that problem, not that you or anyone guarantees anything in a 21-year-old's MLB projections).
Yes, the Braves had no easy way to accommodate Marte and Chipper and the young OFs. But if the Braves believed he was destined for greatness, would they have traded him? Very tough to answer. I doubt they would have. At the least, we can all agree that no one knows him better than the Braves. And we can also agree that when the Braves evaluate one of their own, they tend to get it right.
I don't have any daae on Gammons touting Red Sox farmhands who go on to achieve far less than he projects, but he does it often enough that I've formed a connection.
I see Marte evolving into a good player, not a great one. I think the growing pains will be tougher than widely projected. Ultimately he will put up pretty good OPS numbers, but I think he'll be more streaky than you'd like (yes some great players were very streaky hitters, but streakiness is a negative and one that can get underweighted by OPS).
   49. 1k5v3L Posted: February 05, 2006 at 03:20 AM (#1850559)
I have been expecting this moment... The moment when Marte gets traded and all those BoSox fans who loved the Renteria-Marte trade are turning out in droves to tell us why Marte will suck or never be good or at least will never be great. So predictable.

The next Cleveland Indian who'll get an 8 year, 160M deal from the Red Sox will be named Andy Marte.
   50. peter21 Posted: February 05, 2006 at 06:23 AM (#1850740)
Will say, some scouts are more skeptical than you state. Marte's arm injury raised some concerns. And like many young hitters, he was lost against major league breaking balls (all of the minor league success in the world is no guarantee that he'll solve that problem, not that you or anyone guarantees anything in a 21-year-old's MLB projections).

I understand where you're coming from, and I don't disagree. The thing is, there are no sure things in baseball. All you can do is minimize risk factors, which the Indians seem to have done. Nine times out of ten, a player like Marte will become very, very good (or better). If Marte is that one, oh well, it's a shame...but Shapiro should make this trade every time.

Yes, the Braves had no easy way to accommodate Marte and Chipper and the young OFs. But if the Braves believed he was destined for greatness, would they have traded him? Very tough to answer. I doubt they would have.

I read an interview with John Schuerholz, who I have TREMENDOUS respect for. The interviewer asked the following question:

"Looking back at the acquisition of Tim Hudson, it appears like you made a great deal. Hindsight is always a great thing, however, but with Dan Meyer injured, and Juan Cruz and Charles Thomas making limited progress, you have to be happy with how that deal turned out."

Schuerholz's answer:

"I don't look at things that way. I just never do. My view is that when you make a deal, the most important thing is to make your team better. The next most important thing is to make the other team better...because if you do that often enough, there's going to be a lot of guys lined up to do a deal with you. That's always been my philosophy in the 25 years I've been general manager. Why would you want to do anything else? So somebody writes something or says something about what a steal we made...I don't care about making steals. I care about making our team better. And the second most important thing is that, hopefully, the other team gets better."

I believe answers your worry better than I ever could. Yes, there's a lingering idea in my mind that if they thought Andy Marte was going to be the next A-Rod, they wouldn't have traded him. But I don't Atlanta's agreeing to trade him is an indication that they know something more about him than others. Likely, they have a very similar of him as Cleveland and Boston, and then made valuations based on their team's structure and future accordingly.

I don't have any daae on Gammons touting Red Sox farmhands who go on to achieve far less than he projects, but he does it often enough that I've formed a connection.

Sure, Gammons touts Red Sox prospects. He is a Red Sox guy, nothing wrong with that. Thing is, recently the Red Sox haven't had many legitimate prospects, let alone star-caliber prospects. Therefore, it's possible that Gammons hypes whatever the best Red Sox prospect might be because he's a Sox guy. Gammo would do this if their top-10 was similar to that of Cincinnati or that of Los Angeles (either, I suppose). If Gammons were an Angel-man, he might develop a repuatation of projecting stardom very accurately. I'm also quite confident that the Indians' acquisition of Marte has absolutely nothing to do with Peter Gammons.

I see Marte evolving into a good player, not a great one.

That's certainly possible...however, many people seem to take this as a bad thing. For the Red Sox, if Marte is a "good" player, perhaps he's a bust. But for the Indians, money is nearly as important as baseball-ability. Therefore, a "good" player for less than market value is much more valuable to them than to another team (just like Crisp was more valuable to the Red Sox because he will be their CF, rather than a LF in Cleveland).

Every cheap good player the Indians has gives them more financial flexibilty to compete year after year. And if Marte does become great, well, even better.

I appreciate the discussion, I really enjoy talking baseball, especially with people who disagree with me :)
   51. xfactor Posted: February 05, 2006 at 09:27 PM (#1851187)
Last paragprah: Me too!

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

BBTF Partner

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
The Ghost's Tryin' to Reason with Hurricane Season
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Syndicate

Page rendered in 0.7043 seconds
66 querie(s) executed