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The offseason “elephant in the room”

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3 hours ago, Frobby said:

So you think a platoon of Valaika (-0.1 rWAR this year, -0.6 rWAR last year) and Wilkerson (-1.0 rWAR last year and taken off the 40-man roster this year) would outperform Alberto (0.4 rWAR this year, 2.9 rWAR last year)?     I recognize they might improve their numbers in a platoon situation, but I don’t think it’s very likely they would increase them by enough to outperform Alberto, and of course you’d have to use two roster spots to do it.   

As to finding someone better on the waiver wire or a cheap purchase, I asked who you wanted and don’t have an answer.    

What this comes down to is you don’t think Alberto is as good as his WAR figures say he is, because he’s had bad splits vs. RHP the last two years.    We simply disagree about that.    I think the numbers have been a fair reflection of Alberto’s value.    I’d peg him as a 1-2 WAR player for next year, and at $3 mm, that’s not bad.   

As to Bannon (also mentioned by SG and Philip), I am interested in him long term but he’s had very little AAA experience (20 games), struggled in the AFL last fall and wasn’t given a 60-man roster spot this year so I doubt the team is ready to roll the dice on him     It’s a shame the minor league season wasn’t played, because if it had he’d either be in the majors right now or at least we’d know more about whether we could pencil him in for 2021.

I like the idea of Alberto as a 100% starter against lefties, and the utility guy/backup infielder against righties. 

I'm a big advocate of the Szymborski rule, which is "that if you can’t add good players, add interesting ones" and Alberto is perhaps the weirdest player in MLB. It would be a shame to replace him with another guy who's desperately trying to hit .233 with 17 homers and 133 strikeouts.

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22 hours ago, wildcard said:

No because Stewart has options, offers the team some depth and  is not arbitration eligible.  Nunez has no options and is arbitration eligible.  Its better for the O's to trade Nunez.

Nunez has .01 WAR, and zero defensive value. He has no trade value, if you put him on waivers, you might get a C-level non-prospect for him, but nothing more.

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19 minutes ago, Tony-OH said:

Alberto is a decent stop gap option for now, but if Bannon got off to a hot start next year I would not be against seeing what he looks like at 2B or 3B. 3B is a bigger hole for me than 2B as Ruiz is a well below average MLB 3B both offensively and defensively.

I will not be upset if Alberto is at 2B again in 2021, but he isn't my first choice. He is below average at 2B, lacking arm strength and range. He seems to drop about 1/5 ground balls to him. It has cost us a few double plays this year. Offensively, there is good and bad, sure. But the league has figured him out and has stopped throwing anything close. He just keeps on swinging at pitches Vlad Guerrero would have taken. He seems badly exposed in a full time role. I was hoping he would be traded at the deadline, to get something at his peak value. I will say that the chubby fella can be fun to watch at times, but he is not a guy that should play a full time role on a competitive team. He'll be28 years old in October. 

I am curious to see what else is out there. The in-house candidates are mildly interesting. Pat Valaika (just turned 28)may deserve a shot, and perhaps everyday reps in the same position will benefit him. I am curious about Richie Martin playing alongside Iglesias. I want to see Martin play every day somewhere, Baltimore or Norfolk. Ramon Urias (turned 26 a few months ago) has been interesting in limited looks. The play he made in the hole at SS last night was outstanding and it made up for the clank two nights ago. His bat should produce at least the same OPS as Alberto. Neither has much power, but Urias seems to have a better plan and discipline based on a very small number of at bats. Dilson Herrera (27 in March) would likely hit better than Alberto, but not sure he is much of a middle infielder. Richard Urena (25 in February) is supposedly still in the organization, but it's telling (and disappointing) that he was not in the 60 man pool. I would like him to be re-signed and have him come into Spring in great shape. He is a talent, and was rushed into a part time role as a 21 year old from AA in 2017. And you have already talked about Rylan Bannon (25 in April). I agree that he will probably start in AAA. Andrew Velazquez....no thanks.

As far as Ruiz, I want to pull for the guy, but he's definitely regressed. The swing is often long and he has slider bat speed. The struggles defensively are hard to figure. Maybe there is an injury he is playing through, IDK. It's been a crazy year and the coaching staff knows what they have in Rio. We'll see.

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I'm fairly confident that by July, 2021, with only two months left on his contract, we should be able to get a 17 year-old Dominican lottery ticket for Cobb and save a couple million dineros too.

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8 minutes ago, NCRaven said:

I'm fairly confident that by July, 2021, with only two months left on his contract, we should be able to get a 17 year-old Dominican lottery ticket for Cobb and save a couple million dineros too.

If he's healthy.

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