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Thursday, January 07, 2021

Mets To Acquire Francisco Lindor, Carlos Carrasco

The Mets and Indians have agreed to a deal that will see New York acquire shortstop Francisco Lindor and right-hander Carlos Carrasco.  ESPN.com’s Jeff Passan (Twitter links) was the first to report that the two teams were “deep in talks” about a Lindor deal, and MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand reported Carrasco’s involvement in the swap.  According to MLB Network’s Jon Heyman, the two sides have agreed to the trade.

For moving their star shortstop, Cleveland will receive two prominent young infielders.  MLB Pipeline’s Jonathan Mayo reports that Amed Rosario is part of the trade package, while Passan adds that Andres Gimenez is also going to Cleveland.  The Mets will also move two prospects — right-hander Josh Wolf (via The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal) and outfielder Isaiah Greene (as per ESPN’s Kiley McDaniel).

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 07, 2021 at 12:53 PM | 67 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: carlos carrasco, francisco lindor, indians, mets

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   1. Moses Taylor hashes out the rumpus Posted: January 07, 2021 at 01:12 PM (#5997936)
I'd assume this means the Mets have every intention of signing Lindor to a long term deal. I know very little to nothing of these prospects, but this is a really good move for the Mets.
   2. Rally Posted: January 07, 2021 at 01:16 PM (#5997940)
The pitcher has all of 8 innings in rookie ball to his name, the outfielder was a 2020 draftee and hasn’t had a chance to play a game yet. Both were 2nd round picks. Only those with scouting reports know anything about them.
   3. TJ Posted: January 07, 2021 at 01:20 PM (#5997941)
If accurate, I am very surprised that Don Smith isn’t part of the deal, especially considering Carrasco is involved...
   4. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: January 07, 2021 at 01:21 PM (#5997943)
Willingness to take on salary was probably the biggest factor. Good move for a rich guy.
   5. bfan Posted: January 07, 2021 at 01:44 PM (#5997956)
I'd assume this means the Mets have every intention of signing Lindor to a long term deal.


Unless someone can prove that a FA traded to a team for one year of play is more likely to sign with that team than if that trade has not been made (and it strikes me that the sample sizes would be too small to conclude much of anything), I do not think that assumption should play into evaluating that trade. It is simply one year of Lindor, and whatever period you have left of Carrasco, plus a 1st round pick (assuming Lindor plays well and the Mets make a qualifying offer), for the 4 Mets prospects. It might very well be a great trade, but the Mets could sign him after the 2021 season, no matter what team he plays for.
   6. Adam Starblind Posted: January 07, 2021 at 01:46 PM (#5997959)
Unless someone can prove that a FA traded to a team for one year of play is more likely to sign with that team than if that trade has not been made


I can. If the player is on your team, you have a one-year exclusive negotiating window that you do not have if he is not on your team.
   7. BillWallace Posted: January 07, 2021 at 01:50 PM (#5997961)
Wolf and Greene are pretty low end prospects. It seems like the biggest value going back to the Indians is Gimenez who looks like he could be a low-end regular with upside and many years of team control.

Pretty awful for Indians fans. This can't go on.
   8. Ziggy: social distancing since 1980 Posted: January 07, 2021 at 01:52 PM (#5997962)
This sounds like the kind of trade that will anger the Cleveland cranks.

Re: opportunity to sign a player long-term. If you do this you're going to pay almost full-freight on it. If a guy is one year out from FA, he's not going to take much of a discount to sign early. And it's not clear to me that there's much value in signing a player to a retail-priced contract.
   9. Adam Starblind Posted: January 07, 2021 at 01:53 PM (#5997963)
And it's not clear to me that there's much value in signing a player to a retail-priced contract.


I mean, you do get the player.
   10. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 07, 2021 at 01:54 PM (#5997964)
Great deal for the Mets! Congrats Mets fans!

Cleveland is a disgrace. They should be relegated; literally. Send them to England to play in a crappy soccer league. They couldn't be anymore embarrassing there.
   11. Rally Posted: January 07, 2021 at 01:57 PM (#5997966)
I can. If the player is on your team, you have a one-year exclusive negotiating window that you do not have if he is not on your team.


I think you might have another factor here. If a player has only one year left on his contract, you are more likely to trade for him if you think he can be resigned.
   12. Rally Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:00 PM (#5997967)
Cleveland is a disgrace. They should be relegated; literally. Send them to England to play in a crappy soccer league. They couldn't be anymore embarrassing there.


Some teams can trade high priced stars and just keep on winning. Cleveland shed Bauer and Kluber last year and still made the playoffs. The Rays are another example. Let's wait until the Mets actually finish with a better record than them before relegating.
   13. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:02 PM (#5997968)
Some teams can trade high priced stars and just keep on winning. Cleveland shed Bauer and Kluber last year and still made the playoffs. The Rays are another example. Let's wait until the Mets actually finish with a better record than them before relegating.

It's still a terrible model for the business of baseball. If the Rays/Indians model of continuous turnover became the standard, revenue would decline substantially.

Fans have shown they have no interest in supporting a continually revolving cast of cost-efficient, anonymous good players, even if they win.

Edit: I'd love MLB to do something clever with revenue sharing. Like $25M of revenue sharing funds a "homegrown star" salary slot. That money can only be used to pay a player who has been with the team for 3+ years. If you don't have any long-term stars, you forfeit the unused portion.
   14. Ziggy: social distancing since 1980 Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:04 PM (#5997969)
I mean, you do get the player.


Fans might be happy about that. But the point of a baseball team isn't to win baseball games, it's to make money. If we're evaluating how good or bad a team's decision was, we need to evaluate it relative to their goals, not relative to ours. If (and yeah, that's an "if") there's not much marginal revenue generated by a retail-priced player, beyond the cost of the player himself, then the opportunity to sign a player to a retail-priced contract shouldn't count as much of a positive for a team when evaluating a trade that they made.
   15. bfan Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:08 PM (#5997971)
Unless someone can prove that a FA traded to a team for one year of play is more likely to sign with that team than if that trade has not been made

I can. If the player is on your team, you have a one-year exclusive negotiating window that you do not have if he is not on your team.


I meant real world examples. I know Betts signed with the Dodgers (counter-point: a high end free agent signed with the Dodgers-color me shocked, as that never happens otherwise). I know Mark Texiera refused to sign with the Rangers, and then the Braves, and then the Angels, so he was basically traded twice at the end of his contract, and he made it clear he was going to market and would let the bidding go where it might. The exclusive window only works when the player is not committed to go to market (or doesn't want to play for your team, whichever one that is).
   16. KronicFatigue Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:15 PM (#5997973)
I think you might have another factor here. If a player has only one year left on his contract, you are more likely to trade for him if you think he can be resigned.


Additionally, teams that want/need a player in year N+1 are more likely to want/need the player in year N. At first blush, I didn't agree with bfan in #5, but now I'm wondering about the difficulty of proving the bump that the trading team gets. I suppose there are anecdotal examples of a player saying "I never would have considered playing here, but now that I see how awesome...."
   17. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:23 PM (#5997976)
Additionally, teams that want/need a player in year N+1 are more likely to want/need the player in year N. At first blush, I didn't agree with bfan in #5, but now I'm wondering about the difficulty of proving the bump that the trading team gets. I suppose there are anecdotal examples of a player saying "I never would have considered playing here, but now that I see how awesome...."

Another factor is that teams acquiring this sort of player are likely to be very good. A winning season is probably really fun, especially if you're coming from a bad team. That might predispose the new player to like acquiring team/city X and want to stay.
   18. SoSH U at work Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:26 PM (#5997977)
I meant real world examples.


The Red Sox signed both Pedro and Josh Beckett to deals shortly after acquiring them in their final years before FA. I imagine the acquiring team has an edge in signing a guy.

It may be somewhat difficult to ID a guy who is willing to sign a deal. On the other hand, if he's represented by Scott Boras, I would assume he's planning to hit the open market.
   19. Rally Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:30 PM (#5997979)
Looking at trades where a young star player was traded with exactly 1 year to go before free agency:

Resigned:
Betts
Goldschmidt
Shawn Green ( I think he qualifies)
Adrian Gonzalez
Jim Edmonds

Traded again in midseason, resigned with team:
Matt Holliday

Proceeded to free agency:
Shin Soo Choo
Johnny Damon
JD Drew
Justin Upton
Jason Heyward

So 50/50. Didnt look at pitchers
   20. Adam Starblind Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:34 PM (#5997983)
Fans might be happy about that. But the point of a baseball team isn't to win baseball games, it's to make money.


This is when I stopped reading.
   21. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:35 PM (#5997985)
I love the word resign/resigned. It's a contranym. It means both to stay and to quit, depending on pronunciation.
   22. Ron J Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:36 PM (#5997987)
#5 You do get the sole rights to negotiate for an extended period. That has to have some value. How much? As you say, sample size is small but lots of players who weren't traded also sign extensions in the year before they become free agents and it strikes me that this is where I'd look.
   23. Rally Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:36 PM (#5997988)

The Red Sox signed both Pedro and Josh Beckett to deals shortly after acquiring them in their final years before FA. I imagine the acquiring team has an edge in signing a guy.


Beckett would have been there 2 years if he was determined to test free agency. Four full years with the Marlins + a late season call up in 2001
   24. SoSH U at work Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:37 PM (#5997989)
So 50/50.


Four of the guys who reached FA (Choo, Damon and Drew), plus Holliday, were represented by Boras. None of the five who signed deals were.
   25. Zonk Opposes Trial by Combat Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:38 PM (#5997990)
I suppose this makes me feel marginally better about the Darvish trade. I know it's only one remaining year of team control for Lindor, but this is a dreadfully awful trade for Cleveland.
   26. Adam Starblind Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:39 PM (#5997992)
So 50/50. Didnt look at pitchers


That strikes me as quite a high ratio. In a fictional universe where every team had the need and resources, you'd expect the odds to be 1 in 30. In the real world, you'd expect a young star FA to have, what, a half dozen teams competing for him?

   27. SoSH U at work Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:42 PM (#5997995)
n a fictional universe where every team had the need and resources, you'd expect the odds to be 1 in 30. In the real world, you'd expect a young star FA to have, what, a half dozen teams competing for him?


But as Ron J mentioned, we already know that players are willing to forego FA and sign long-term deals with their own clubs. It happens regularly. So it shouldn't be surprising that if an acquiring team is willing to bring out the big checkbook for the new acquisition, the player will go for the bird in hand option.
   28. Adam Starblind Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:43 PM (#5997996)
But as Ron J mentioned, we already know that players are willing to forego FA and sign long-term deals with their own clubs. It happens regularly. So it shouldn't be surprising that if an acquiring team is willing to bring out the big checkbook for the new acquisition, the player will go for the bird in hand option.


Of course. I think that proves my point -- you want the bird in your hand. (I think in my post the player is the bird and the team has the hand.)
   29. Ron J Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:44 PM (#5997997)
#26 I know in hockey it's common for the team to demand permission to talk to the player -- get a sense as to how open he is to staying with the new team.
   30. JRVJ Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:44 PM (#5997998)
On the one hand, it's great to see two teams (Padres & Mets) genuinely trying to improve themselves.

On the other hand, it's just terrible to see a team like Cleveland tearing down like this (I mind it a little less with Tampa, because they are absolute warlocks at pulling it off).

In any case, w/ Lindor & Carrasco now with the Mets, that should make the destination of the top FAs a little clearer (e.g., it's hard for me to see Bauer going to the Mets).
   31. Adam Starblind Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:48 PM (#5998000)
it's hard for me to see Bauer going to the Mets


There's still a good amount of room under the luxury cap. They do still have to figure out second or third base though. I'd like to see them bring back Turner, though Turner may really hate Sandy Alderson.
   32. rr doesn't talk to pawns Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:49 PM (#5998001)
I have not been following baseball as closely on Planet COVID, so I may be way off, but Cleveland trading Lindor has always seemed like a really dumbass idea to me. The guy is really good, supposedly super-popular, charismatic, rarely misses games, plays a key position. Even if it is not perfect in WAR/$, Lindor is exactly the kind of guy you want to keep--especially if you last won the World Series during the Truman Administration.
   33. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:50 PM (#5998002)
In any case, w/ Lindor & Carrasco now with the Mets, that should make the destination of the top FAs a little clearer (e.g., it's hard for me to see Bauer going to the Mets).

Yeah, I don't see the Mets spending big bucks to push Peterson out of the rotation. He already projects as a league average SP.
   34. JRVJ Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:51 PM (#5998004)
31, I mean they COULD sign Bauer, but one would think that there are other, more pressing needs.
   35. Adam Starblind Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:54 PM (#5998007)
Snapper's reminder about Peterson [33] makes me tend to agree with you[34]. Springer is probably still an option.
   36. Moses Taylor hashes out the rumpus Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:56 PM (#5998010)
Unless someone can prove that a FA traded to a team for one year of play is more likely to sign with that team than if that trade has not been made (and it strikes me that the sample sizes would be too small to conclude much of anything), I do not think that assumption should play into evaluating that trade.

That wasn't my point, but I still manage to disagree with you. I simply meant that I would expect that the Mets are planning to be the high bidder/do whatever they can to keep him.

It is simply one year of Lindor, and whatever period you have left of Carrasco, plus a 1st round pick (assuming Lindor plays well and the Mets make a qualifying offer), for the 4 Mets prospects. It might very well be a great trade, but the Mets could sign him after the 2021 season, no matter what team he plays for.

Considering what they gave up and that they also got Carrasco, I think this is still a good trade for the Mets even if Lindor leaves in a year.


   37. JJ1986 Posted: January 07, 2021 at 03:00 PM (#5998013)
I'd like Bradley Jr. and someone who can play good 3B-defense, probably in a part time role. Maybe Travis Shaw. Actually Kolten Wong would be nice on a 1-year deal with McNeil moving to 3B.
   38. Rally Posted: January 07, 2021 at 03:23 PM (#5998019)
There's still a good amount of room under the luxury cap. They do still have to figure out second or third base though. I'd like to see them bring back Turner, though Turner may really hate Sandy Alderson.


McNeil and Davis?
   39. Dog on the sidewalk has an ugly bracelet Posted: January 07, 2021 at 03:42 PM (#5998023)
If McNeil moves to the infield, then there's still a hole in the outfield, unless Dom Smith becomes the everyday LF. It may be their best move, but it will not be pretty.

Add me to the list of happy Mets fans. I like this as much as I disliked the Cano trade.
   40. caspian88 Posted: January 07, 2021 at 03:47 PM (#5998026)
If you want a larger sample size of players traded one year before free agency, you can expand the sample to players from other sports (as long as you recognize that there are differences in their labor deals and so on). A quick look at the recent NHL:

Resigned:
Erik Karlsson (SJS)
Jeff Skinner (BUF)
Brent Burns (SJS)
Ryan O'Reilly (BUF)
Max Pacioretty (VGK)
Ryan Kesler (ANA)
Justin Faulk (STL)
Johnny Boychuk (NYI)
Jordan Staal (CAR)

Proceeded to Free Agency:
Milan Lucic (LAK-EDM)

Unknown:
Derek Stepan (OTT) - He was traded this offseason and has one year left on his deal, with no extension signed as yet.
Brandon Saad (COL) - Same as Stepan

Then mid-season acquisitions:

Resigned:
Mark Stone (VGK)
Evander Kane (SJS)

Proceeded to Free Agency:
Taylor Hall (ARZ-BUF)
Matt Duchene (CBJ-NSH)
Paul Stastny (WPG-VGK)
Mats Zuccarello (DAL-MIN)

Kevin Hayes was traded by Winnipeg to Philadelphia in the offseason that his contract expired and wound up signing a contract with the Flyers and avoiding free agency. Keith Yandle did the same thing with Florida.

Ryan McDonagh was traded with a year and a half left on his contract, but signed an extension the offseason after the trade. I wasn't originally looking for that.

I think demanding a negotiation window prior to the trade helps make resigning a traded player more likely, as you know before you trade whether he's amenable to an extension.
   41. Ron J Posted: January 07, 2021 at 03:48 PM (#5998027)
#40 Yeah. Was thinking of Stone (I'm in Ottawa) when I made the comment.
   42. Eddie Gaedel Posted: January 07, 2021 at 03:50 PM (#5998028)
Having the rights a player for the year leading to free agency gives the team greater access/insight into the player's medical records, training habits, ability to "play with others," etc. All of which factor into the team's willingness to meet the player's demands.

I remember reading an excellent article a few years ago about how players that are RE-SIGNED by teams tend to have great ROI (as measured by WAR/$) than players that are signed by new teams, which would indicate that the "home team" has more date available to inform major financial decisions.
   43. JJ1986 Posted: January 07, 2021 at 04:27 PM (#5998044)
McNeil and Davis?
Davis is a really bad 3B (the numbers say he's a really bad OF too, but I think he's a little better out there). If there is a universal DH, I'd also be happy with the Mets having 8 guys to rotate through the 7 non-SS, non-C positions.
   44. Lowry Seasoning Salt Posted: January 07, 2021 at 04:57 PM (#5998059)
On the one hand, it's great to see two teams (Padres & Mets) genuinely trying to improve themselves.

On the other hand, it's just terrible to see a team like Cleveland tearing down like this (I mind it a little less with Tampa, because they are absolute warlocks at pulling it off).


And on the other other hand, whether looking at a 5-year stretch, or 10-year, or 15, or 20 or 25, Cleveland has gone to the playoff more than the Padres and Mets combined.

This sounds like the kind of trade that will anger the Cleveland cranks.


I must have missed the announcement that they'd chosen a new name. Cranks it is, I guess.
   45. Walt Davis Posted: January 07, 2021 at 05:04 PM (#5998063)
Used to be that the new team could get some sort of commitment from the player before the trade but they added a rule against this. (I think the Red Sox and AGon had already agreed and that might be the last one.) But of course we don't know what info is informally shared either by an agent or by the trading team ("No trade unless we think we can resign him" ... "we talked, he wants Mookie money" ... "We can do that if we have to.")

It still doesn't make sense to trade away more in that scenario. All Cleveland has to trade is the one year. Staying after 2021 is Lindor's option, not Cleveland's. It is, at most, there's some other team that wants Lindor and the negotiating window and are willing to pay X for it then Cleveland can push NY to X + 1. (Which might have happened of course.)

Anyway sure, that exclusive window is worth something -- but how do we value it without the real-world examples asked for (and later provided). As noted if you sign the player to the same deal you would have signed them if they had been an FA (i.e. "full market value"), then there was little/no extra value in having that option -- the alternative scenario is that some other team would have bid even higher. Unless that's the case then we're back to the fact that all you got in the trade was the one year.

And what does the extension get you -- the right to trade taking on one year of injury/collapse risk in exchange for shaving a few million off the total $? Even if hometown discounts exist, you're not their "hometown." You avoid whateever the draft pick penalties are now for a high-priced FA.

I don't see how that window can be worth very much. (And the Mets don't seem to have added much value here to get it.) You get the year and the draft pick, a draft pick you might decide to forego as part of a long-term deal.

On those examples .... Matt Holliday didn't extend with the Cards, he entered free agency then signed with the Cards. The Cards were not able to take advantage of the (very short) exclusive window, at most they were able to convince him it would be a nice place to play ... or they just fronted up with the best offer. The others were all extensions as best I can tell.
   46. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: January 07, 2021 at 05:10 PM (#5998066)
The benefit to the year is you can negotiate with a player before he can really test the market. Of course, a player is only going to forego the chance to test the market if you sign him before the end of the season, so you take on some injury/performance risk for that window. But I still think there’s some value to having it.
   47. Walt Davis Posted: January 07, 2021 at 05:28 PM (#5998074)
I remember reading an excellent article a few years ago about how players that are RE-SIGNED by teams tend to have great ROI (as measured by WAR/$) than players that are signed by new teams, which would indicate that the "home team" has more date available to inform major financial decisions.

I'd be careful about how they defined their populations and what they controlled for. For starters, we obviously should not be including guys like Acuna in such an analysis. It's also critical to control for age. There's also the question of were they "re-signed" or were they "extended" and which bits are we including in the successful RoI?

Ryan Braun is an "impossible" example. The Brewers gave him 8/$45 after his rookie year -- buying out 6 years of pre-FA plus the first 2 FA years. Three years later (with 5 years left on that original contract), they added another 5 years to that deal at the cost of $105. The first deal was brilliant -- 37 WAR over those 8 years ... although just 5 WAR over those two FA years. The extnesion was not so good, just 8 WAR. So in the 7 years of his "FA period", Braun produced just 12 WAR and cost the Brewers about $130 M. That's not terrible but it's not good.

It makes sense of course that a team that has had a player for an extended period has more information so probably would make slightly better decisions. How much (and how reliable) information do you gather in a year? Many of these trade-and-sign deals involve the player being extended before the season begins or shortly after that ... at most, probably no later than mid-season. Now the Mets do get a look at medical info, etc. which is worth something but they don't get to see Lindor's work ethic, etc. but if they are going to extend him, expect negotiations to begin before spring training and an agreement before opening day. The Dodgers had little/no inside dope on Mookie when they extended him. I'm pretty sure that was true of most of the other folks listed earlier.
   48. The Duke Posted: January 07, 2021 at 09:36 PM (#5998134)
Lindor this year in this Market has how much excess value at his arb price ? Not much I guess. No more than $10 and closer to $0 i would think. He would also bring a draft choice next year (. What would it be, something after the first round ?)

Carrasco is worth something. Presumably worth more than his salary for his two years plus option.

So are Rosario and Gimenez basically for carrasco and the two picks are for Lindor ?

   49. Joyful Calculus Instructor Posted: January 07, 2021 at 09:55 PM (#5998144)
I love the word resign/resigned. It's a contranym. It means both to stay and to quit, depending on pronunciation.


That's why I started writing re-sign for somebody who signs a new contract.
   50. Russlan thinks deGrom is da bomb Posted: January 07, 2021 at 10:55 PM (#5998167)
It's kind of sad that Rosario is basically an afterthought in a deal like this.

Obviously, this a great move for the Mets, escpecially if the Mets end up signing him long-term.

   51. DFA Posted: January 08, 2021 at 12:44 AM (#5998194)
Sounds like the Dolans are going with Spiders!

Maybe Gimenez is better than I thought? IDK, though Cleveland keeps getting to the postseason so I am reluctant to question their moves, even if this return feels light...
   52. Ron J Posted: January 08, 2021 at 06:36 AM (#5998217)
#51 Keith Woolner? Is he even still there? Haven't heard that he's moved on, but if he's there he's been very low key.

And yes I know. One guy from the community and not even a decision maker. It's tempting to believe he plays a big role, but realistically everybody's got statheads working for them these days.

Really smart guy. I miss having access to his work.
   53. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: January 08, 2021 at 10:24 AM (#5998245)
I still think Rosario has potential. He’s never going to be as good as Lindor, but can he be the next Jose Reyes? He’s shown flashes of that kind of potential, and obviously was a highly ranked prospect. But he’s had defensive issues at times and 2020 was a definite step back at the plate, albeit in limited sample size.
   54. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 08, 2021 at 11:01 AM (#5998258)
I still think Rosario has potential. He’s never going to be as good as Lindor, but can he be the next Jose Reyes?

I don't know. He could probably match the bat, but he's a worse defender and doesn't have the baserunning value. Jose Reyes without the defense and baserunning isn't a very good player.

I think Rosario ends up an averagish SS for 6-8 years, but is never a star of any sort.
   55. Steve Balboni's Personal Trainer Posted: January 08, 2021 at 11:23 AM (#5998273)
13. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 07, 2021 at 02:02 PM (#5997968)
Some teams can trade high priced stars and just keep on winning. Cleveland shed Bauer and Kluber last year and still made the playoffs. The Rays are another example. Let's wait until the Mets actually finish with a better record than them before relegating.

It's still a terrible model for the business of baseball. If the Rays/Indians model of continuous turnover became the standard, revenue would decline substantially.

Fans have shown they have no interest in supporting a continually revolving cast of cost-efficient, anonymous good players, even if they win.

Edit: I'd love MLB to do something clever with revenue sharing. Like $25M of revenue sharing funds a "homegrown star" salary slot. That money can only be used to pay a player who has been with the team for 3+ years. If you don't have any long-term stars, you forfeit the unused portion.


The NBA dealt with this years ago in creating the "Bird Rule", which basically allows teams that have a veteran player for a certain period of time to go over the salary cap, and/or offer additional years and money as they enter free agency, in the name of maximizing the chance that star players will stay on the same team for much or all of their careers.

My take on this is that it seems like this used to be more effective than it is now - star players seem more willing and able to try to team up with other stars to create "super teams". I'm guessing this is mainly because the financial incentive of the Bird Rule is simply not strong enough anymore - when the difference in offers is 125m vs 160m or whatever, and when the marketing deals are more lucrative than ever, players have less sensitivity to the marginal increase in guaranteed money.

I don't know what the equivalent of Bird Rights would be in MLB, except maybe a team would get more leeway on having to pay the luxury tax if they re-signed "Bird Rights" baseball players? But for teams in smaller markets, there may be a point where it is not about avoiding the luxury tax - it is about limiting salaries, in general. The NBA, with a salary cap, doesn't really have this problem - and it is not even clear the Bird Rule is that effective anymore in the NBA, anyway.

So I'm not sure what incentives MLB could really put in to encourage the continuity of homegrown players sticking around with their team for most of their careers.
   56. SoSH U at work Posted: January 08, 2021 at 11:51 AM (#5998284)
I don't know what the equivalent of Bird Rights would be in MLB,


Revenue sharing money could be used by small-market teams to offset the salary of homegrown players. So if the Rays wanted to sign the next Evan Longoria to a long-term deal, some of that salary would be matched by league funds available strictly for that purpose. I think something like this would be good for the long-term health of the sport, building greater interest from the fans in lower-revenue clubs who know they don't have to wave goodbye to a popular homegrown guy like Lindor as soon as he reaches FA (or a few years before). But since it could also have the effect of increasing salaries, I doubt MLB would be interested.

   57. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: January 08, 2021 at 11:55 AM (#5998287)
That’s fair, snapper. Somehow I thought Rosario was a better baserunner but his SB/CS numbers are pretty bad.

His defense seemed to improve significantly after a bad first few months of 2019. I didn’t watch many Mets games in 2020 but if anyone did, how did Rosario look out there? I don’t put a lot of stock in 40+ games of defensive stats.
   58. Rally Posted: January 08, 2021 at 12:15 PM (#5998303)
I still think Rosario has potential. He’s never going to be as good as Lindor, but can he be the next Jose Reyes?


You never know who's going to be the next Max Muncy or Justin Turner late career breakout, but odds don't look good.

At the same age Reyes was coming off back to back 5+ WAR seasons, had led the NL in steals 3 times in a row, and twice in triples with 17. In his age 24 season he even drew 77 walks, and at 23 had 66 extra base hits. He was a tremendous young player. Rosario is sitting on 2.3 career WAR in 403 career games.
   59. depletion Posted: January 08, 2021 at 12:27 PM (#5998311)
Rosario was never thought to be the base runner Reyes was. Amed’s milb slugging pct gave hope that he could be a heavy bat SS. He’s still young so it isn’t over for him by any means. Supposedly a good guy and intelligent.
   60. depletion Posted: January 08, 2021 at 12:33 PM (#5998317)
This trade sucks for Tribe fans. I appreciate the discussion on salary cap / Bird rule because baseball is sub-optimal in the experience for small market fans. I am a 50 year Met fan.
   61. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: January 08, 2021 at 12:51 PM (#5998323)


You never know who's going to be the next Max Muncy or Justin Turner late career breakout, but odds don't look good.


Those guys were never top-10 prospects in baseball, but I'm honestly not sure what Rosario ever did to justify that designation. He had a good season in the minors in 2016 (.833 OPS), but it was mostly driven by a high batting average. He put up an .833 OPS again at AAA in 2017, but that's less impressive in Las Vegas.

He had a very good 2nd half of 2019 at the MLB level. Like I said earlier, good defense, and an .804 OPS (112 sOPS+). 101 OPS+ for the full season, so if he could keep that up with average defense then he'd be a decent player.

He's hit much better on the road (.791 OPS) than at home (.607) in his career, so maybe he'll find his stroke outside of Citi Field.
   62. Adam Starblind Posted: January 08, 2021 at 01:14 PM (#5998337)
You never know who's going to be the next Max Muncy or Justin Turner late career breakout, but odds don't look good.


Both credit one of those California batting gurus who figured at that you should hit it in the air.
   63. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 08, 2021 at 02:14 PM (#5998363)
Both credit one of those California batting gurus who figured at that you should hit it in the air.

Well, they're not gonna tell us if it's PEDs.
   64. Adam Starblind Posted: January 08, 2021 at 04:21 PM (#5998409)
Both credit one of those California batting gurus who figured at that you should hit it in the air.

Well, they're not gonna tell us if it's PEDs.


That's obviously something else Rosario could try.
   65. Walt Davis Posted: January 08, 2021 at 05:03 PM (#5998421)
You never know who's going to be the next Max Muncy or Justin Turner late career breakout, but odds don't look good.

I'm trying to think of a SS who did this. Ozzie became a better hitter but of course he was a star SS regardless. There were some good-hitting young SS who either continued (Harrah) or improved (Franco) after shifting off. Tejada I guess. (I'm not suggesting there's anything about the position that makes it less likely, just that "late career breakout SS" didn't bring anybody to mind.)

Somebody mentioned Clevelend usually being competitive and making the playoffs reasonably often. That's true but if you're a Cleveland, you want to be stuck in the AL Central. Detroit was a big-money team for a while but it's a division of small-market, low-medium payroll teams. (Chciago's a big market but financially the White Sox are the ugly stepsister and Reinsdorf.) If they'd been stuck in the ALE, they'd probably be Toronto. Regular "contention" in the ALC only requires being regularly better than Minn and KC, two of the smallest markets out there.

Note, the Cubs should have it easy in the NLC but ... historical incompetence and the demonic Cardinals have proven difficult to overcome pre-Theo.
   66. John DiFool2 Posted: January 08, 2021 at 05:17 PM (#5998425)
I love the word resign/resigned. It's a contranym. It means both to stay and to quit, depending on pronunciation.


Can I buy a hyphen, Pat?

This Sox fan feels for you, Cleveland fans.
   67. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: January 08, 2021 at 05:29 PM (#5998431)
I'm trying to think of a SS who did this. Ozzie became a better hitter but of course he was a star SS regardless. There were some good-hitting young SS who either continued (Harrah) or improved (Franco) after shifting off. Tejada I guess. (I'm not suggesting there's anything about the position that makes it less likely, just that "late career breakout SS" didn't bring anybody to mind.)


Carlos Guillen had a 93 OPS+ through age 27 and a 121 OPS+ after that, including seasons of 143 and 136. His defense deteriorated but he remained a SS for four seasons after the offensive bump.

Marcus Semien took a big leap in 2019 but that may have just been a one-year fluke; 2020 did not look too good.

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