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— A Timely Look at Transactions as They Happen

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Royals - Activated Teahen

Kansas City Royals - Activated 3B Mark Teahen from the 15-day DL; optioned OF Matt Diaz to Omaha.

You know, even the Cubs and Marlins figured out that Gary Scott and Scott Pose stunk by this point of the season.  Matt Diaz was given all of 20 at-bats to prove himself but nobody can unlodge the great Emil Brown from his job.  What’s even sadder is that this is an improvement over last year, when the Royals actually gave last year’s spring training super fluke, Abraham Nunez a job after he predictably flopped with the Marlins.

Mark Teahen’s back, but there’s little to be excited about in Kansas City.  Without Teahen, Super Joe hit .423 on balls in play and I think it’s only a matter of time before Graffanino and McEwing supplant Gotay and Teahen.  DeJesus better watch out - if he goes into a slump, he might find himself replaced by Brian McRae or Todd Dunwoody.

Dan Szymborski Posted: May 04, 2005 at 02:21 PM | 7 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. Brandon in MO (Yunitility Infielder) Posted: May 04, 2005 at 02:41 PM (#1309993)
Well, to be honest, the Royals gave Abe Nunez a job around August, and batted him THIRD in the order.

As for Emil Brown, he throw da ball really well
   2. Chris in Wicker Park Posted: May 04, 2005 at 03:33 PM (#1310122)
Wow, some chance they gave Diaz.

If SuperBlow really supplants anyone, well, this team is even worse than I think.
   3. BTF's left-wing cheering section (formerly_dp) Posted: May 04, 2005 at 04:36 PM (#1310407)
I don't understand the Royals- Diaz has a great track record as a minor league hitter, and 2 months of good hitting could land them a decent prospect in return. What's the point of playing Brown?
   4. Topher Posted: May 04, 2005 at 05:20 PM (#1310549)
What's the point of playing Brown?

Well I don't think Brown is going to play either. You're talking about the 5th outfielder here.

I don't think that this transaction is all that different from the Pickering transaction. In both, Allard Baird is sending down a player to get regular AAA at bats rather than wasting away on the bench.

If Baird can pull another Denny Bautista out of his hat for trading one of the vets later on down the road, I'll gladly eat crow. But I don't know if that trick can be pulled for the second year in a row.

Pickering was sent down because Pena stopped using him and was using Matt Stairs and Eli Marrero at 1B/DH instead. So Calvin was sent down to play regularly and hopefully get some value again. Matt Diaz only got the call in the first place because of the fact that the Royals didn't want to have more egg on their collective face by demoting Pickering and calling up Harvey. It would be easier to demote Pickering for anybody besides the guy that he "beat" for a job in the Spring. So Diaz was promoted based upon his hot start.

I believe that the primary reason that Baird chose to demote Pickering was that Tony Pena was not going to play him on a regular basis. I suspect that this is the same reason that Baird is demoting Diaz. Pena has already indicated that Sweeney and Harvey are going to get the vast majority of PA's at 1B/DH. (Quite interesting how quickly that opportunity for Stairs and Marrero to play at those positions evaporated once "Tony's guy" got called back up to the show.) So that leaves proven veterans Matt Stairs, Terrance Long, and Eli Marrero to fight for the scraps at those positions plus LF/RF. And that doesn't include the "winner" of the Emil Brown / Matt Diaz demotion.

Unless injuries were to strike, there would be little chance of Diaz getting more than a couple of starts a week. And if that is the case, he's much better playing every day in Omaha.

What Baird really needs to do is (1) find a manager that will play the kids over the veterans and (2) find a way to trade the veterans. The former isn't going to be happening too soon because the shine hasn't completely wore off of his Manager of the Year trophy and it would be difficult for Baird to put Pena on the chopping block without risking his own position. The latter is currently impossible because none of the veterans is playing well and no team has wide-spread injuries that would facilitate a trade.

I don't particularly fault Baird for acquiring Long as that trade enabled the team to dump Darrell May and to take a flyer on Dennis Tankersley. But the Eli Marrero trade was a bit dumb. Marrero is an ok player to have on your team, especially in the NL. But for a team undergoing a youth movement with no pretenses for contention, all Eli Marrero is going to do is get in the way of a player that deserves a chance to prove what he can do. Undergoing a youth movement while trading for two veteran fourth outfielders in the offseason isn't the best of ideas.
   5. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: May 04, 2005 at 09:00 PM (#1311165)
Great post Christopher, and I think you're right, which is why its even more infuriating that Tony Pena is still the skipper of this ballclub.
   6. Tim D Posted: May 05, 2005 at 04:50 AM (#1312920)
Well, I to be the one to differ but:

Pickering is 28 and has 1400+ AB's in AAA.

Diaz is 27 and has 1200+ AB's in AAA.

Neither of them is going to be a star. Both of them can help the Royals right now. And they aren't going to learn how to hit AL pitching by getting "regular AB's" in Omaha.

They both have more upside than Long, Marrero, Brown and Harvey. But Long makes $5 mil and was once somebody, and Marrero makes $3 mil and is "versatile" and a "gamer." Harvey is the manager's pet even though his bat isn't as good as either Diaz or Pickering. Brown... well the only thing I can figure is that he must look better in uniform (certainly better than Pickering anyway). Brown has now compiled a .200 or so BA in 500 ML AB's. He has had consistently good AAA numbers over the years, but not as good as either Diaz or Harvey.

In short, if the Royals had a clue both Diaz and Pickering would be getting plenty of AB's and by July they would be the ones with the trade value: cheap guys who hit the snot out of the ball. But this is the Royals. Since I'm a Tiger fan I'd just as soon see the Royals get the AL Central Stupidity Award for a few years.
   7. richie allen Posted: May 05, 2005 at 12:25 PM (#1313185)
a) I saw Pickering on mlbtv the other day, and he wasn't nearly as fat as people make out

and

b) Why does a GM not have the power to say to a manager "here's what we're doing, and why." and if that doesn't work then "You will play X at Y until I tell you not to"

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