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Transaction Oracle
— A Timely Look at Transactions as They Happen

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Yankees - Acquired Lawton

New York Yankees - Acquired OF Matt Lawton from the Chicago Cubs for P Justin Berg

Berg’s probably just filler material, but his control has improved enough that he could be a higher-level organizational player.

No, Matt Lawton can’t play defense, even in left field, but given that this move forces the Yankees not to play their worst defensive outfielder in center (I think Bernie’s even more inept than Shef would be in centerfield, which is a scary thought), it’s hard not to complain about this move.  Lawton will contribute offensively and should be run-of-the-mill poor rather than high comedy poor.  Matsui won’t be great in center, but he’ll be a good bit better than the incumbent; he may actually catch a few balls outside of Bernie’s 5-foot radius.

2005 ZiPS Projection - Matt Lawton
——————————————————————————————————
Period     AB   R   H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO SB   BA   OBP   SLG
——————————————————————————————————
Actual ‘05 452 61 121 30 1 11 49 62 69 17 .268 .366 .412
Rest ‘05   107 19   28   6 0   3 16 14 15   4 .262 .358 .402
——————————————————————————————————
Total ‘05 559 80 149 36 1 14 65 76 84 21 .267 .364 .410
Proj. ‘06 530 92 137 27 0 16 78 67 76 15 .258 .351 .400

Dan Szymborski Posted: August 27, 2005 at 03:16 PM | 37 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. Artie Ziff Posted: August 27, 2005 at 03:35 PM (#1577616)
I would not give that much credit to Berg myself. I am not sure how the salary was worked out, but on paper this looks like a steal for New York.
   2. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: August 27, 2005 at 04:03 PM (#1577644)
If the Yankees get the Pirate version of Lawton, they make out fine here. If they get the Cub version... ugh. A player who didn't hit, didn't walk, and can't field probably shouldn't be making $1M+ per month.

I do think that the Dusty system was part of Lawton's problem, and moving to a team that has more appreciation of things like working the count and drawing walks is a better fit for him. From the time he joined the Cubs until the Wednesday game vs ATL, Lawton saw a total of 6 3-ball counts in 3 weeks with the team (and drew 1 walk). Not exactly what you want out of a purported OBP machine leading off.
   3. Moses Taylor World Re-Tour 2.0: Warszawa Posted: August 27, 2005 at 04:23 PM (#1577658)
This is a good trade for the Cubs to make in the fact that it signals they realize where they are this season (not competing for the wild card). Of course, it doesn't do them any good if Hairston then takes over LF full-time (instead of Murton). It's time to let Cedeno and Murton play every day and see what they've got (or see what they can do playing every day up here, even if it's only a month+).

On the other hand, this is a pretty bad return considering the progession of players involved. The Cubs have downgraded from Dubois/Gerut to Berg. How nice would a healthy Gerut be for the Cubs in 2006 (as the 4th OF)?
   4. Andere Richtingen Posted: August 27, 2005 at 04:39 PM (#1577670)
Lawton will contribute offensively

Well, he didn't contribute anything to the Cubs offensively. I know, he didn't get much of a chance, but I would consider this far from a guarantee.
   5. 6 - 4 - 3 Posted: August 27, 2005 at 04:40 PM (#1577671)
WTF?!? I thought this was supposed to be a pastrami thread...

Lawton strikes me as the type of hitter who will really enjoy hitting at Yankee stadium: left-handed, modest line-drive power, good walk rate. I'm not sold on the idea that he's a better defender in left than Williams would be, but over the next five weeks I'd expect him to be a modest upgrade at the plate.
   6. rr Posted: August 27, 2005 at 04:40 PM (#1577672)
I posted this on the corned beef thread.

"but lawton sucks at getting on base this year, he doesnt walk"

With your Cubbies, that was true--his OBP was .289 in 78 AB. Maybe Dusty made him more "aggressive."

But I still like the move. Picking up secondary players with a couple of positives is a step up for the Yankees.

Of course, Lawton might stink it up in a small sample. That's one of the risks of late-season rentals.
   7. b Posted: August 27, 2005 at 04:50 PM (#1577680)
Well, he didn't contribute anything to the Cubs offensively. I know, he didn't get much of a chance, but I would consider this far from a guarantee.

To contribute offensively, all he needs is to be better than Womack's .244/.271/.275. I'd feel fairly comfortable that he's capable of that.
   8. TVerik, the gum-snappin' hairdresser Posted: August 27, 2005 at 04:57 PM (#1577691)
Look at the lineup for today, b. Torre figured out how to get Bernie AND Lawton into the same outfield.
   9. b Posted: August 27, 2005 at 05:01 PM (#1577697)
Yeah, TVE, I saw. Womack and Sheffield are a wash defensively, I'd gather, so you basically just get Lawton's bat over Tino or Womack against a lefty. None of those options are terribly appealing. Why isn't Andy Phillips on the 25 man again?
   10. b Posted: August 27, 2005 at 05:07 PM (#1577706)
anyway, rosenthal just said on FOX that cash told him that Lawton, Matsui, Sheff left to right and Bernie at DH is the plan still.
   11. Boots Day Posted: August 27, 2005 at 05:24 PM (#1577736)
To contribute offensively, all he needs is to be better than Womack's .244/.271/.275. I'd feel fairly comfortable that he's capable of that.

That's what people said about Melky Cabrera.
   12. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: August 27, 2005 at 05:34 PM (#1577752)
"should be run-of-the-mill poor rather than high comedy poor"

I dunno. One game this year, he went back on a ball, lost it, turned, found it, lost it again, and ran face-first into the wall, with the ball nearly hitting him on the way down. That was high comedy, or near enough as makes no difference.

He's a good bat to start against RHP, if you can stomach the defense. He should never play against lefties.
   13. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: August 27, 2005 at 05:34 PM (#1577754)
This is a good trade for the Cubs to make in the fact that it signals they realize where they are this season (not competing for the wild card).

Yeah, it's amazing what having Ramirez and Wood hurt, having Patterson and whomever is in LF suck, having virtually no bench outside of kids who don't play, having a lousy bullpen, and nad having a shaky back of the rotation will do for the collective mindset.
   14. Bernal Diaz has an angel on his shoulder Posted: August 27, 2005 at 05:43 PM (#1577774)
As and Indians fan I am shuddering in my boots. I mean how can we compete with the Yankess when they can just go out and pick up players such as Lawton whenever they want. Hell, we should just pack it in and give up. The Yankees are going to run away with the wild card now......
   15. rr Posted: August 27, 2005 at 05:53 PM (#1577798)
So, to tie these threads together with the Indians,I have a question for Bernal:

How many pastrami sandwches could Wickman eat at one sitting?
   16. Bernal Diaz has an angel on his shoulder Posted: August 27, 2005 at 05:56 PM (#1577807)
How many pastrami sandwches could Wickman eat at one sitting?

Wickman would balk at the idea.....
   17. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: August 27, 2005 at 06:02 PM (#1577819)
It's time to let Cedeno and Murton play every day and see what they've got (or see what they can do playing every day up here, even if it's only a month+).

This may actually happen. The Cubs should probably shut Ramirez down for the remainder of the season which will allow Dustaroo to put Neifi and Cedeno in the same infield.

I imagine the Nomar at 3rd base experiment is over and he's not healthy enough to play SS (or any position on an everyday basis). Of course, Macias is still hanging around...
   18. WillieMays Haze Posted: August 27, 2005 at 06:05 PM (#1577826)
Essentially, the Cubs traded away Jody Gerut for a guy from the Staten Island Yankees.

I know Gerut isn't great, but they also traded Jason Dubois to get him. WTF are the Cubs doing?
   19. Gaylord Perry the Platypus (oi!) Posted: August 27, 2005 at 06:07 PM (#1577828)
Pops, I would assume that Dusty will take this opportunity to get both Neifi and Macias plenty of at bats. Hollandsworth will probably also play nearly everyday.
   20. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: August 27, 2005 at 06:12 PM (#1577840)
Yeah and Scott McClain is 33 so it looks as if he jumps to the front of the line as well.

Stop raining on my parade!!!
   21. Dan Szymborski Posted: August 27, 2005 at 06:12 PM (#1577841)
I dunno. One game this year, he went back on a ball, lost it, turned, found it, lost it again, and ran face-first into the wall, with the ball nearly hitting him on the way down. That was high comedy, or near enough as makes no difference.

Well, Bernie can't even make it to the fence on a hit ball.
   22. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: August 27, 2005 at 06:48 PM (#1577888)
In Yankee stadium, sure. PNC's a different ball of wax.

If it weren't for the food-confiscation policy, you could probably sit at the foul pole and spit watermelon seeds all the way to 1B.
   23. Tony H. Posted: August 27, 2005 at 07:28 PM (#1577949)
Wickman would balk at the idea.....

Ha!
   24. AROM Posted: August 27, 2005 at 07:50 PM (#1577995)
One game this year, he went back on a ball, lost it, turned, found it, lost it again, and ran face-first into the wall, with the ball nearly hitting him on the way down. That was high comedy, or near enough as makes no difference.

Sounds more like trajedy to me.

Most teams can classify their OF's as good or bad. With the Yanks, its either comedy or trajedy.
   25. Darren Posted: August 27, 2005 at 08:57 PM (#1578144)
Here's a question: do teams that are dealing with the Yanks even stop think about how a trade might help them? Or do they just go in with the assumption that if they can possibly help the Yanks without hurting themselves too badly, they should do the trade?

WTF do the Cubs get out of this trade? A C prospect? Whoopeee do.
   26. Dusty's Least Favorite Base-Clogger (Roy Hobbs) Posted: August 27, 2005 at 09:06 PM (#1578175)
<i>Essentially, the Cubs traded away Jody Gerut for a guy from the Staten Island Yankees.

I know Gerut isn't great, but they also traded Jason Dubois to get him. WTF are the Cubs doing?<i>

Hendry's just out of his league as a GM. He was fine working with as part of a team on scouting and drafting, but if that's where is strength was he should have just been left at that job. Being a GM is a lot different though.

Most of the praise he's gotten has been for 2 trades. He was in the right place at the right time when Littlefield was ordered to dump Aramis Ramirez. At the time Cubs were the only big market team with a need for a 3B, that was in a pennant race, and had the payrool flexiblity to steal Aramis and the Lofton rental. Littlefield had no choice but to bend over.

As far as DLee for Choi it appears that the Marlins were also willing to dump his salary to any taker. The Orioles' GMs bragged that the had a deal on the table giving up two organizational minor league players that were not in their plans anyway. They backed out foolishly, only because they couldn't make Lee sign an extension in a 48 hour window.

If Hendry had been the GM of a low budget team instead of the Cubs, he would been the ridicule of posters for the brief time he held that position.

As it is, he'll dutifully continue to pack his roster with elderly pinch-runner types, and fail to recognize how to build an efficient bullpen. The boo birds that attacked Hawkins and taunt Korey, would be better off directing their ire at the GM and the manager of this pitiful team that has squandered a unique chance to be competetive.
   27. Derek J Posted: August 27, 2005 at 09:31 PM (#1578231)
Here's a question: do teams that are dealing with the Yanks even stop think about how a trade might help them? Or do they just go in with the assumption that if they can possibly help the Yanks without hurting themselves too badly, they should do the trade?

Yeah, 'cause everyone wants to help the Yankees, sure. They're all banding together to make sure the Red Sox don't repeat, that's it :)

Seriously, when they make deals like this, teams think "We get to save a million bucks! Woo-hoo!"

Of the teams out there that are both a) in contention and b) have a million bucks to spend on a c-list lefty outfielder, with mediocre defense, who else was out there looking for Lawton? The Mets could've coughed up the money, but they didn't enjoy Lawton's last tour of duty at Shea. The White Sox, maybe?
   28. shoewizard Posted: August 28, 2005 at 04:44 AM (#1579083)
So I guess this means the Yankees won't be taking either Shawn Green or Luis Gonzalez off the D Backs hands, huh? Rats.
   29. Craig in MN Posted: August 28, 2005 at 06:16 AM (#1579245)
Of the teams out there that are both a) in contention and b) have a million bucks to spend on a c-list lefty outfielder, with mediocre defense, who else was out there looking for Lawton?

The Twins are arguably in contention and could definitely use Lawton. And they have at least said that money wouldn't stop them from making a move. Their offense would look a lot better with another hitter.
   30. 6 - 4 - 3 Posted: August 28, 2005 at 06:21 AM (#1579258)
The Twins are arguably in contention and could definitely use Lawton. And they have at least said that money wouldn't stop them from making a move. Their offense would look a lot better with another hitter.

Wasn't Lawton's last few weeks in Minnesota pretty rocky?
   31. Craig in MN Posted: August 28, 2005 at 06:38 AM (#1579286)
I don't recall too many waves, though I don't recall the details that much. He wasn't exactly happy about the situation, but I don't think he's holding a grudge. I don't think he would be opposed to returning for a month.
   32. Moses Taylor World Re-Tour 2.0: Warszawa Posted: August 28, 2005 at 07:10 AM (#1579320)
I don't think he would be opposed to returning for a month.

It's not like he'd have a choice either. If he were sent there, he'd have to go.
   33. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: August 29, 2005 at 02:54 PM (#1581759)
>Most of the praise he's gotten has been for 2 trades.

You forgot the Nomar trade (rightly considered a steal at the time), the Hawkins for Williams and Aardsma trade, the Hundley for Karros and Grudzielanek trade (though there was certainly some luck there), picking up Michael Barrett, signing Todd Walker, and making the best of a bad situation with Sosa.
   34. zonk Posted: August 30, 2005 at 12:51 PM (#1583899)
If Hendry had been the GM of a low budget team instead of the Cubs, he would been the ridicule of posters for the brief time he held that position.

Echoing the above post -- now, come one... That's being unfair by a fair piece.

Was the Dubois to Gerut to Lawton to a nothing minor leaguer a debacle?

Sure - but it's a "debacle" the same way misplacing your car keys in the morning is a "debacle". At the time, it seems like a much bigger disaster than it really is.

Gerut and Dubios both have the upside of being good 4th OFs. I'm not going to lose sleep over pissing away 4th OFs, even good ones -- especially when it's an isolated incident.

Hendry has easily been the best Cubs GM of my lifetime -- and while I could quickly name 3 or 4 GMs better than him (Beane, Jocketty, Schuerholz, ?) -- it would be tough to name 5.
   35. Cris E Posted: August 30, 2005 at 01:27 PM (#1583951)
Well Hollandsworth is in ATL now, so Cubs fans can relax a little. Dusty is probably a little more tense than this time last week, but given enough time these kids will become old and he can relax.
   36. Rudy Pemberton Posted: August 31, 2005 at 06:29 PM (#1587853)
Who would win in a fight...Jason dubois or Jack cust?
   37. McCoy Posted: September 03, 2005 at 04:47 PM (#1595288)
Hendry has easily been the best Cubs GM of my lifetime -- and while I could quickly name 3 or 4 GMs better than him (Beane, Jocketty, Schuerholz, ?) -- it would be tough to name 5.

Apparentely you were born around 1990 because Dallas Green has Jim Hendry beat hands down.

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