Posted tagged ‘Roy Halladay’

Joey Votto takes home NL MVP

November 22, 2010

Congratulations Joey! Votto was one of my favorite prospects when he was coming up through the Reds system (mainly because of his Italian last name) and it’s been fun watching him develop into a premiere franchise player.

I still find it funny he needed a final vote to get on the NL All-Star team. The f’ing MVP needs a final vote. What can ya do?

Tomorrow the award I’ve been most looking forward to will be announced- AL MVP. Josh Hamilton will probably win in a runaway, but I’m hoping my boy RC can at least get a couple first place votes.

And once again I’ve got to give props to the BBWAA. On the big four awards, they are batting 1.000 so far (Doc Halladay, Felix Hernandez, Joey Votto).



MLB award winners

November 7, 2010

Sorry for the delayed post on this topic, but without further ado here are my picks for the 2010 MLB awards.

AL MVP- Josh Hamilton (.359/.411/.633/.447/182, 571 PA, 7.0 aWAR)

Hamilton was just too dominant. I concentrated on WAR to figure out my MVP, along with several other factors. Since there are two versions of WAR, I got the average of rWAR and fWAR, which is what Tom Tango recommends. On here I pretty much use only fWAR, but for better analysis, I found the average of two versions this time around. While Hamilton didn’t look at hot with rWAR as he did with fWAR, his average was still the best and I put more stock in fWAR. Granted he missed a month, a month in which he could have slumped. But it also could have been his best month. He put up an insane .447 wOBA with positive defensive value playing center field. That’s an MVP to me.

Runner-ups: 2) Evan Longoria 3)Adrian Beltre 4) Robinson Cano 5) Miguel Cabrera

NL MVP- Joey Votto (.324/.424/.600/.439/177, 648 PA, 6.8 aWAR)

Offensively, Votto was nearly the Josh Hamilton of the NL. He absolutely killed the ball en route to leading the Reds to the NL Central division. Now, while his fWAR bested Albert Pujols, his rWAR was a full win behind Pujols, giving Pujols a better aWAR. However, the difference was due to difference in defensive metrics. According to fWAR, Votto was a slightly better hitter and they were equal defenders. According to rWAR,they were equal offensively, but Pujols was much better defensively.With SSS issues of defensive metrics and the difference in defensive metrics used in each version of WAR, I feel more comfortable saying Votto had the better year.

Runner-ups: 2) Albert Pujols 3) Ryan Zimmerman 4) Matt Holliday 5) Troy Tulowitzki

AL Cy Young- Felix Hernandez (249 IP, 3.04 FIP, 3.26 xFIP, 6.1 aWAR)

For most of the season I had Francisco Liriano as my Cy Young winner. But he got kind of ill in September and faltered a little bit while Felix picked up steam. I feel bad knocking Liriano for that, but he made the starts and wasn’t his usual self. So be it. Hernandez was a boss, leading the league in innings and excelling in all the things a pitcher can control- K, BB, HR allowed.

Runner Ups- 2) Cliff Lee 3) Francisco Liriano 4) Jered Weaver 5) Jon Lester

NL Cy Young- Roy Halladay (250 IP, 3.01 FIP, 2.92 xFIP, 6.9 aWAR)

This one is not even a contest. Halladay arguably had his best season as a professional, leading the league in innings and WAR. Looking at all his full seasons, he posted the best K/9 of his career and tied his best BB/9 at 1.08 walks per nine. He absolutely destroyed the National League.

Runner-ups- 2) Josh Johnson 3) Ubaldo Jiminez 4) Adam Wainwright 5) Roy Oswalt

AL Rookie of the Year- Austin Jackson (.293/.345/.400/.333/108, 675 PA, 3.1 aWAR)

While some people  might pick Neftali Feliz, I think Austin Jackson is a no-brainer. He played a more valuable position, was an above-average hitter and played superb defense. Putting up a 3.7 fWAR as a rookie is impressive. Jackson will be a solid player for Detroit for a long time. Also, if he didn’t get hurt, Caros Santana probably would have won the award. But he was called up late, and then missed a lot of time because of his injury. I put him at #5 anyway just to recognize him.

Runner-ups- 2) Brian Matusz 3) Neftali Feliz 4) John Jaso 5) Carlos Santana

NL Rookie of the Year- Jason Heyward (.277/.393/.456/.376/138, 623 PA, 4.7 aWAR)

Jason. Heyward. Is. A. Beast. I mean for real. He was twenty years and almost put up a .400 OBP in a full season. He had 91 BB despite spending some time on the DL. The dood can hit- and field. It was tempting to pick Posey, especially after watching his postseason, but Heyward had nearly 200 more PA in the regular season and was amazing in his own right. The NL rookie class had to have been one of the best ever.

Runner-ups- 2) Buster Posey 3) Jaime Garcia 4) Mike Stanton 5) Stephen Strasburg

AL Comeback Player of the Year- Colby Lewis (201 IP, 3.55 FIP, 3.93 xFIP, 4.0 aWAR)

In a tightly contested race, Lewis just edges Francisco Liriano. Yes, Liriano had a better season. BUT I find Lewis’ comeback more amazing- and he still had a fantastic season. Sure Liriano hasn’t been relevant since 2006, but Lewis pitched in JAPAN for the past two seasons. At least Liriano was hurt and fiddling around in America.

Runner-ups- 2) Francisco Liriano 3) Vernon Wells 4) Paul Konerko 5) Alex Rios

NL Comeback Player of the Year- Aubrey Huff (.290/.385/.506/.388/145, 668 PA, 5.8 aWAR)

Call this the Year of the Comeback. Much like the AL, there was an abundance of comeback players to choose from. Of all  my picks, this one was one of the toughest. But Huff had the best years of the players I narrowed it down to, and he had the worst performance of anyway in 2009. So he slides in perfectly as the winner.

Runner-ups- 2) Brett Myers 3) Anibal Sanchez 4) Kelly Johnson 5) Rickie Weeks

AL Most Improved/Breakout Player of the Year- Jose Bautista (.260/.378/.617/.422/169, 683 PA, 6.3 aWAR)

I think this one is a no-doubter. Jose Bautista went from a utility-role player to mashing 54 home runs. His WAR reached MVP level. Using fWAR, he bested his previous WAR high of 1.9 by five wins. Wowzers.

Runner-ups- 2) Daric Barton 3) Brett Gardner 4) CJ Wilson 5) David Price

NL Most Improved/Breakout Player of the Year- Andres Torres (.268/.343/.479/.363/128, 570 PA, 5.3 aWAR)

There were a ton of breakout players, but Andres Torres had the biggest breakout. He debuted in 2002 from 2002 through 2005 he never posted a fWAR above 0. Then he went to the minors from 2006 through 2008. He posted a 2.0 WAR last year in 75 games, but really broke out this season with a 6.0 fWAR. He hit well and was a monster of a fielder. Three players I want to mention for improving, but who didn’t even make my top five are Chris Young, Martin Prado, and Omar Infante.

Runner-ups- 2) Jay Bruce 3) Angel Pagan 4) Stephen Drew 5) Chase Headley

AL Relief Pitcher of the Year- Joakim Soria (65 IP, 2.53 FIP, 2.99 xFIP, 2.1 WAR, 2.18 pLI)

Joakim Soria did his best Mariano Rivera performance this season. Not only was he among the leaders in FIP, xFIP, and WAR, but he had the highest leverage index of the players I narrowed my search down to, meaning he performed like a beast in tougher situations than the other candidates for the award. He simply was the best reliever in the AL.

Runner-ups- 2) Matt Thornton 3) Mariano Rivera 4) Neftali Feliz 5) Rafael Soriano

NL Relief Pitcher of the Year- Carlos Marmol (77 IP, 2.01 FIP, 2.95 xFIP, 3.1 WAR, 2.04 pLI)

There were a ton of great relievers in the NL this season. Brian Wilson, Heath Bell, Matt Belisle, etc. But Marmol was the most dominant. His K/9 was 15.99. You read that right. 15.99. Sure, he walked more than five batters per nine, but chances are he would strike out the side before he would walk in a run. His K-BB was a +86. Brian Wilson had 93 STRIKEOUTS. And Marmol’s K-BB was 86. Simply amazing. Plus, he was among the leaders in pLI.

Runner-ups- 2) Brian Wilson 3) Heath Bell 4) John Axford 5) Matt Belisle

AL Silver Slugger Awards-

C- Joe Mauer (.327/.402/.469/.373/136)

1B- Miguel Cabrera (.328/.420/.622/.429/172)

2B- Robinson Cano (.319/.381/.534/.389/145)

3B- Adrian Beltre (.321/.365/.553/.390/143)

SS- Alexei Ramirez (.282/.313/.431/.322/97)

OF- Josh Hamilton (.359/.411/.633/.447/183)*

OF- Jose Bautista (.260/.378/.617/.422/169)

OF- Shin-soo Choo (.300/.401/.384/.388/147)

DH- Luke Scott (.284/.368/.535/.387/143)

* AL Offensive Player of the Year

NL Silver Slugger Awards-

C- Brian McCann (.269/.375/.453/.361/128)

1B- Joey Votto (.324/.424/.600/.439/177)*

2B- Dan Uggla (.287/.369/.508/.381/140)

3B- Ryan Zimmerman (.307/.388/.510/.389/146)

SS- Troy Tulowitzki (.315./.381/.568/.408/150)

OF- Carlos Gonzalez (.336/.376/.598/.416/155)

OF- Jayson Werth (.296/.388/.532/.397/150)

OF- Matt Holliday (.312/.390/.532/.396/153)

P- Yovanni Gallardo (.254/.329/.508/.363/130)

* NL Offensive Player of the Year

AL Gold Glove Awards-

C- Matt Weiters (1060 innings/5 DRS/13 FSR)

1B- Daric Barton (1331 innings/20 DRS/5 FSR/12.1 UZR)

2B- Robinson Cano (1393 innings/7 DRS/10 FSR/-0.6 UZR)

3B- Evan Longoria (1330 innings/15 DRS/20 FSR/11.1 UZR)

SS- Alexei Ramirez (1376 innings/16 DRS/12 FSR/10.8 UZR)

OF- Brett Gardner (1211 innings/16 DRS/12 FSR/21.9 UZR)

OF- Carl Crawford (1260 innings/14 DRS/15 FSR/18.5 UZR)

OF- Ichiro Suzuki (1411 innings/12 DRS/15 FSR/14.8 UZR)

P- Mark Buehrle

NL Gold Glove Awards-

C- Yadier Molina (1138 innings/6 DRS/19 FSR)

1B- Ike Davis (1263 innings/13 DRS/3 FSR/10.1 UZR)

2B- Brandon Phillips (1311 innings/0 DRS/18 FSR/9.7 UZR)

3B- Ryan Zimmerman (1189 innings/20 DRS/16 FSR/13.9 UZR)

SS- Brendan Ryan (1127 innings/27 DSR/11 FSR/11.5 UZR)

OF- Andres Torres (1120 innings/12 DRS/10 FSR/21.2 UZR)

OF- Jay Bruce (1199 innings/17 DRS/9 FSR/20.2 UZR)

OF- Michael Bourn (1189 innings/16 DRS/8 FSR/17.6 UZR)

P- Tim Hudson

Click here to see how we did on our pre-season award predictions!

Doc Halladay throws second no-hitter in baseball playoff history

October 6, 2010

Holy. Shit.

Doc. Halladay. Is. Fucking. Amazing.


Welcome to the postseason, Doc.

I love baseball.

A look at the 2010 Cy Young races

September 22, 2010

With only a couple weeks left in the season, there are still some exciting races in baseball- the AL East division crown, the NL West division crown, and the NL Wild Card. But playoff races aren’t the only races heating up. Both the Cy Young and MVP awards in both leagues will be going down to the wire. So I thought I’d take a look at the Cy Young races today, since I really haven’t checked up on it since summer.

American League favorite

In my book, Francisco Liriano still is the favorite to win the award. As of today, the award is between him, Cliff Lee, and Felix Hernandez. Honestly, you could pick one of their names out of a hat and I’d be cool with that person being the winner. But I like Liriano based on several things. First, there are three outcomes a pitcher has control of- strikeouts, walks, and home runs. Liriano is third in the league in K/9 at 9.38, and his K rate is better than that of King Felix and Cliff Lee. BB/9 is where Liriano “falters” as Hernandez and Lee have better marks (Lee has an ungodly 0.72 BB/9). But when it comes to homers allowed, Liriano blows the field away. He leads the league with a 0.25 HR/9. Talk about preventing runs. Liriano strikes guys out and doesn’t allow homers. You can cite Target Field, but Felix pitches in Safeco, and Lee pitched in Safeco for a couple months.

Delving further, Liriano has the best FIP, xFIP, and tERA in the AL. A clean sweep. The triple crown of DIPS. When I throw that into the fact of the three things a pitcher can control, Liriano is better than Lee and Felix at two of them, I have to give Liriano the award.

American League candidates

2) Cliff Lee- As I mentioned, I wouldn’t care if he won the award. His fWAR leads all pitchers in baseball at 6.5. He doesn’t walk anybody. He throws a lot of innings which is real valuable. If he hadn’t missed April, he very well could be the clear leading candidate.

3) Felix Hernandez- Again, I’d be cool if he won the award. He is in this spot because of an AMAZING second half. But when I did the dirty work, I just liked Liriano better, and then put Lee second partly because of IP. I know Felix has thrown more innings, but that’s because Lee missed a month and then some. On a per start basis, Lee eats up more innings.

4) Jon Lester- As the Red Sox fortunes took a turn for the worse, people seemed to tune Jon Lester out. But he’s been his amazing self, leading the AL in K/9 and racking a 5.6 fWAR.

5) Jered Weaver- He fell off a little bit, but he is second in the AL with a 9.40 K/9, and has a 5.6 fWAR. Not too shabby. He should get some votes.

Who will win

I think CC Sabathia will win. Felix Hernandez and Cliff Lee could give him a serious run for his money. Unfortunately, that small streak of “poor” pitching by Lee a few weeks ago will be taken into consideration by the voters. Despite the W/L record, I believe Felix will get a ton of support, since he has been getting a good deal of attention lately by people trying to show that W/L is crap. Attention is always good for winning awards. But CC has 20 wins, pitches for the team with the best record, and has been good- if not Felix good. The worst part is that Carl Pavano will get more votes than Liriano.

National League favorite

Right now, its gotta be Roy Halladay. I was really hoping Josh Johnson would win the award, but his season ending injury has done him in. But he’s been so good that despite missing September, I still think he gives Halladay a run for his money. However, Doc is just a horse. He’s tossed 241 innings. He’s thrown eight complete games. He has three shutouts. He leads in the NL by far with a 1.12 BB/9. His K/9 is 7.10 which is the best mark of his career. His 6.4 fWAR leads the NL. He has a 3.07 FIP, leads the NL with a 2.95 xFIP, and has a 3.43 tERA. ‘Nuff said. He has been brilliant.

National League candidates

2) Josh Johnson- Until his injury, Johnson was almost literally unstoppable. His 2.43 FIP did lead the NL, and by a fair margin. He was third in xFIP at 3.17. His tERA is 2.78. Yeah. His 0.34 HR/9 led the NL and his 9.11 K/9 is better than the strongest candidates for the award. It’s a shame he got hurt, because the award was all his. I mean, Doc has tossed 241 innings and has a 6.4 fWAR. Johnson threw 183 innings and has a 6.2 WAR. Yeah.

3) Adam Wainwright- I don’t know how or why, but Wainwright gets overlooked a lot. But he has a 2.86 FIP, 3.15 xFIP, a 2.92 tERA, and logged an impressive 224 innings. His fWAR is 6.0 and he is a strong challenger to Doc for the Cy Young.

4) Ubaldo Jiminez- He may have had that fantastic come to a screeching halt sometime in June, but he has kept up the dominance. His fWAR is 5.9 and he continues to strike people out at a fantastic rate. Considering he pitches at Coors, it’s amazing his HR/9 is second in the league at 0.36 HR/9. It’s also amazing that considering his best pitch is the fastball, he can still succeed at Coors. I’ve mentioned before how the altitude lessens the movement of the fastball, which is key for Ubaldo along with his velocity. But he is a freak and should get some votes.

Who will win

Doc Halladay. He won twenty games. He has pitched well by average standards. The award is his. Ubaldo still might challenge him, but his campaign trail has been losing steam for sometime now.

Buster Olney breaks down the awards races

August 21, 2010

In a recent ESPN article, Buster Olney handicapped the AL/NL MVP and Cy Young races. The piece was interesting enough to draw my attention. I will go through each piece of the article to share my thoughts.

There are six weeks of baseball remaining, a quarter of a season, in which a lot can change. In 2004, Vladimir Guerrero mashed his way to the American League MVP Award by hitting .363 in September and hoisting the Angels onto his back: He generated 11 homers and 25 RBIs in that late push.

There is a lot more baseball to play in 2010. But as of today, here’s how we’d handicap the races for the two major awards in each league.


1. Miguel Cabrera, Tigers. He leads the majors in OPS and RBIs and is tied for second in the AL in homers, all the while playing half his games in a pitchers’ park.

So far I have no complaints. While I believe Josh Hamilton is the MVP, I wouldn’t complain if Miguel Cabrera won the award. I know and you know OPS and RBI are junk stats, but in this case Olney is still picking a solid candidate to win the award.

2. Josh Hamilton, Rangers. He’s hitting .375 since the All-Star break, and .396 overall in home games.

No problems here. Although, saying he has hit .396 at home hurts his argument that Hamilton has been really good. Considering his BA is in the .350 range, it shows his home park has inflated his BA. Considering Olney takes a players home park into consideration- he did so with Cabrera- then Olney did not make a convincing case for Hamilton. My argument wouldn’t hinge on a stat like BA at all.

3. Robinson Cano, Yankees. The most important player in this lineup in 2010, and he has been excellent defensively.

That’s fine.

Others in the conversation: Delmon Young, Twins; Adrian Beltre, Boston; Evan Longoria, Rays; Paul Konerko, White Sox. But to be clear, there is an enormous gap between the top two candidates and the rest of the field.

Really Olney? Really? Delmon Young is in the conversation? What conversation? Young has finally put together a solid year offensively , but his defense continues to suck. His 2.0 WAR is average. Justin Morneau, Joe Mauer, Orlando Hudson, Jim Thome, and Denard Span are all Twins players with a better WAR. That’s 5/9 of the Twins starting lineup alone. Young is not in the MVP conversation.

Paul Konerko is not in the conversation either. He has been good, not great. The worst part is that while Konerko is mentioned, a player on a better team who has had a much better season is not mentioned at all- Carl Crawford. That is a poor oversight by Olney.


1. Joey Votto, Reds. His numbers are basically running neck-and-neck with those of Albert Pujols — and Votto’s team is in first place, which will count for something in the voting.


2. Adrian Gonzalez, Padres. Numbers do not fully reflect what he means to San Diego’s success, between his defense and what teammates perceive to be an extraordinarily unselfish approach

Stoopid, just stoopid. Olney thinks he is the second most valuable player in the league, when is “only” the fourth most valuable player- at all first base alone! He’s having a fine season, but it doesn’t compare to Albert Pujols or Votto. The entire pitching staff, defense, and lady luck are the MVP’s of San Diego because they are winning due to those three things. Even with A-Gonz, the Padres offense is anemic.

3. Pujols, Cardinals. He’s having another great season.

Good analysis!

Others in the conversation: Aubrey Huff, Giants; Carlos Gonzalez, Rockies; and the Nationals’ Ryan Zimmerman, who will get a lot of top 10 votes. Again, there is a major gap between the top tier of candidates — Votto, Gonzalez and Pujols — and the rest of the field.

I will give kudos to Olney. He mentioned Zimmerman, a top three MVP candidate, which I was not expecting since he is on a last place team and gets a lot of value from defense. So I will excuse him for saying there is a gap between Zimmerman and Votto or Pujols, when Zimmerman might have the best case of the three.

AL Cy Young Award

1. Cliff Lee, Mariners/Rangers. His WHIP is a major league best 0.95.

Here’s one barometer of just how good Lee has been, from Daniel Braunstein of ESPN Stats & Information:

The lowest percentage of pitches thrown on 2-0, 3-0 or 3-1 counts:

Pct. K/BB
Cliff Lee 3.53 14.50
Roy Halladay 4.21 7.20
Ricky Nolasco 4.72 4.90
Scott Baker 4.92 3.90
Kevin Slowey 4.99 3.92
Phil Hughes 5.00 3.05
Carl Pavano 5.14 3.45
Josh Johnson 5.14 4.26
Roy Oswalt 5.20 3.36
Dan Haren 5.25 4.94
For the sake of comparison, the highest percentage of pitches thrown on 2-0, 3-0 or 3-1:

Pct. K/BB
Gio Gonzalez 9.93 1.81
Tim Lincecum 9.38 2.73
Wade LeBlanc 9.15 2.11
Derek Lowe 9.07 1.87
C.J. Wilson 8.81 1.80
Joe Saunders 8.66 1.62
Jaime Garcia 8.50 1.94
Brandon Morrow 8.44 2.55
Trevor Cahill 8.43 .95
CC Sabathia 8.37 2.34

Well, Olney took a weird route to his final answer, but at least he picked this one correctly. Lee is having his best season and arguably the best season since Pedro in 2000 (or Zack Greinke in 2009).

2. Felix Hernandez, Mariners. He’s been absolutely dominant in the second half, with a 1.93 ERA.

Felix has had a great second half, but he should not be second in this race. Francisco Liriano has been filthy this season, but Carl Pavano is getting all the attention in Minny. Who does Liriano need to jerk off to get some respect?

3. David Price, Rays. Fifth in ERA and tied for second in wins with 15

We know better than to use ERA and wins, but Olney doesn’t. So it’s hard to criticize him for this pick. But what about other great lefties instead of Price? Like, lets say, Jon Lester?

3a. Trevor Cahill, Athletics

No, just no. King Luck should not be considered. I like Cahill and he does a nice job garnering ground balls. But he relies on BABIP too much. He doesn’t strike many people out. So balls are put in play a ton against him. By getting ground balls he does a good job to help himself from giving up too many base runners via hits, but a .213 BABIP is absurd. That is not his talent level at all, which is why he should not be in the Cy Young running.

Others in the conversation: CC Sabathia, Yankees; Clay Buchholz, Red Sox; Jered Weaver, Angels.


NL Cy Young Award

1. Adam Wainwright, Cardinals. He has gotten better and better and better as the season has progressed.

No qualms here, although it should be Doc Halladay or Josh Johnson.

2. Tim Hudson, Braves. Having an incredible bounce-back season.

No. See Cahill, Trevor.

3. Roy Halladay, Phillies. He has a shot at 20 wins in his first season with the Phillies.

Open your eyes and look at the numbers, Buster. Halladay, a future HOF’er at this point in time, is having his best season. He should be 1 or 2 (if you like J-Johnson). Not three. Poor effort here.

Again, who does J-Johnson need to jerk off? 5.6 WAR, 2.27 ERA, 2.45 FIP, 3.16 xFIP. Yeah, nbd I guess.


July 23, 2010

Last night I was listening to MLBN as they were covering the west coast games. Now, I don’t expect to hear many Rhodes scholar comments, but at least their crew is better than BBTN on ESPN. But Mitch Williams said something that gave me painful memories of Steve Phillips on ESPN.

They showed a large screen comparison of Roy Halladay and Tim Hudson, showing their career W/L, IP, ERA, BAA,  and WHIP. Here’s how that looked:

Roy Halladay: 158-84, 2200 IP, 3.36 ERA, .257 BAA, 1.19 WHIP

Tim Hudson: 158-83, 2194 IP, 3.42 ERA, .250 BAA, 1.25 WHIP

Pretty similar, right? Nearly identical numbers across the board. But we’re comparing arguably the best pitcher in baseball to Tim Hudson. Even someone like Mitch Williams knows there really is no comparison, right? RIGHT?

Wrong. Wiliams got out to a good start by saying Halladay is the best pitcher in baseball. But then he nose dived into the deep end. Rather than simply saying Halladay is the best pitcher in baseball and Hudson doesn’t compare, he used the numbers shown by MLBN to state Tim Hudson is an ace and also one of the very best pitchers in baseball.

Don’t get me wrong, Hudson is a good pitcher. But saying he is on Halladay’s level is a completely moronic statement. I know Williams doesn’t know anything about advanced statistics, but Halladay kills Hudson in WAR, FIP, xFIP, tERA, K/9, BB/9, and they have a similar HR/9. Halladay is just better. You don’t even need advanced stats to realize that. Halladay is universally considered a top pitcher in the game. Hudson- not so much. Halladay was and is a pitcher that every team would covet in a trade, not Hudson. Halladay is the guy who is always in the Cy Young race, not Hudson.

Phillies in the trade market

July 21, 2010

Talks between Houston and Philly regarding Roy Oswalt are heating, as well as talks between Tampa and Philly regarding Jayson Werth. So let’s talk about it.

Roy Oswalt to Philadelphia for prospects

I would imagine this potential trade has the most basis in reality. Oswalt has been the subject of trade talk all summer and Phils GM Ruben Amaro has made it clear he wants a high-end starting pitcher. But we also know Oswalt is due around $5mil the rest of the season, as well as $16mil next season. That’s a hefty price to pay, especially for a Phillies team that currently has a payroll too high for their own liking. If Oswalt restricts their financial flexibility for 2011, is he worth trading for?

Well, so far he has a 2.9 WAR. Using the ZiPS projection on FG, he should have a 3.48 FIP over 82 more innings. So lets say that roughly comes out to about a 2.0 WAR. With the current market rate of a win around $4mil, lets simply do $4mil x 2.0 WAR = $8mil. That also means his total WAR in 2010 would be 4.9. Looking at 2011, let’s dock him the traditional 0.5 wins from his WAR. So if he has a 4.4 WAR in 2011 with a market rate of $4.4, his value would be $19.36. Adding up his rest of 2010 value and 2011 value, results in a total value of $27.36mil. He would be paid about $21mil during that time. So he brings the Phillies a net value of $6.36mil. However, if he is still a Phillie after 2011, he has a $16mil club option with a $2mil buyout. I’d say there is a good chance he is bought out, at which point he’d be a type A free agent. So dock $2mil from his current total value to the Phillies, and then add in $10mil for the two picks the Phillies would get for him. Now the Phillies have a total net value of $14.36mil in a trade.

So while he gives Philly a surplus in value (before giving up prospects), is he worth it? He just might be. In the Wild Card they are three games behind the leader in the loss column. Their staff is in shambles- Jamie Moyer is hurt and Joe Blanton has not been good. Right now their only constant is Doc Halladay and Cole Hamels has just been alright. Oswalt is a significant improvement over their fifth starter. As for 2011, Oswalt is showing no signs of aging other than his actual age. He, along with Doc and Cole should make for a strong rotation. Philadelphia may be restricted financially in 2011, but they have no holes to fill. Their everyday starting lineup is under contract (if Brown is the starting right fielder), as well as their top three pitchers.

For Houston to do this deal, what would they want in return? Well if Oswalt is giving the Phillies about $14mil in value, the Astros should expect a top 51-75 hitting prospect or a top 50 pitching prospect. A combo of B or C level prospects would work as well, but I’m sure Houston would rather have the A level prospect. Unfortunately, outside Brown the Phillies have no good prospects. In fact, I’m not so sure who they got in return for Cliff Lee would be enough to land Oswalt. Phillipe Aumount and Tyson Gillies have both struggled mightily this season and neither were top prospects to begin with. It looks like the Cliff Lee trade might come back to bite them in the ass again.

Jayson Werth to Tampa Bay

The other trade being discussed is Jayson Werth to Tampa Bay. Why would Philadelphia do this? To be honest, my only guess is they believe they are getting a starting pitcher, and do not want to pay the pitcher AND Werth. I know Domonic Brown is waiting in the wings which makes Werth a little more expendable than under normal circumstances, but Werth is still a pretty good player. Plus, he will net the Phillies two draft picks when he leaves. So Philly must be thinking what they get in return for Werth will be worth more to them than two draft picks.

The rest of the season Werth is projected to hit .274/.368/.497/.380 over 228 PA. So let’s say he has a 1.5 WAR to finish the season. That would bring his value to $6mil. Werth is being payed $7mil this year, so Tampa would probably end up paying around $3mil. Werth would also net Tampa two draft picks, so tack on an additional $10mil in value and Tampa would be getting a total net value of $14mil. So by trading Werth rather than keeping him, they would only be getting an additional $4mil in value. Is that worth trading him rather than keeping him to make a run at another World Series? Personally, I would say no. Unless Tampa is willing to part with a top prospect or two that you feel is better than anyone you can get with your draft picks, I would not deal Jayson.

As for Tampa, hell yeah I would take Werth. In a tight race, they need any upgrade they can get. Especially since 2010 may be their best chance to win it all, with Crawford and Pena about to leave. While Sean Rodriguez and Reid Brignac are decent players, Werth allows you to play Zobrist at second while putting Werth in right. Also, it could open the door for a potential BJ Upton trade where Tampa can bolster other areas of the team. Werth would give Tampa five outfielders without even looking at Desmond Jennings, so it really makes Upton expendable. Werth would also give them two draft picks, along with Crawford and Pena. WOW. Can you imagine Tampa with six draft picks in the early rounds next season?

Another possible scenario

I don’t believe this has been discussed, but I think a three way deal should go down. Prospects to Houston, Werth to Tampa, and Oswalt to Philly. Philly and Tampa could team up prospects to head to Houston. A win-win-win for all participants. Houston gets fair value for Oswalt, while Tampa and Philly would be both pay fair value, or less even, for Werth and Oswalt.

Whatever happens, baseball is about to be shaken up in what would would be a major trade(s).