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Mets blog: Reyes Available, Orioles Interested


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I'd call him Cliff Lee?

I guess I should preface this next part with a question: do you think being the best pitcher on any staff makes somebody a "TOR SP"? Because...

...Halladay, Wainwright, Carpenter, F. Hernandez, Sabathia, Lester, Verlander, Lincecum, Cain, J. Sanchez, Santana (despite injuries), Kershaw, Price, Jimenez, J. Johnson, M. Latos, J. Weaver, Hamels, Bucholtz, and T. Hanson are all guys I'd prefer to have leading my rotation going forward (and obviously I've left some noteworthy names off the list).

As your list progresses, it seems like your criteria for labeling "TOR status" change. On one hand, you've got guys like Carpenter and Santana, who have proven themselves over the long haul, and may still be elite as of this very instant, but certainly are major question marks going forward due to age and injury issues.

On the other hand, you've got guys like Price, Latos, Buchholz, and Hanson who, far from having a proven track record, have basically NO track record. I suspect no one with even a passing understanding of sabermetric evaluation of pitching would seriously prefer these players to Lee THIS SEASON...so it seems to me you must be factoring in some age-related projection with them.

But why, when considering labels like "elite" and "TOR," which necessarily require evaluation of CURRENT standing in the league (because they're by definition relational to the quality of other pitchers), should we factor in age and projection? I don't really see what age or future potential has to do with determining the upper-echelon of pitchers at this moment.

There are two pitchers in baseball who have been in the league's top 10 in FIP each of the last 3 seasons: Roy Halladay and Cliff Lee. That's fairly "elite" company. If I had to select my top tier of 5-6 ML pitchers, I'd probably go with Halladay, Lee, Lincecum, J. Johnson, Felix, and Wainwright.

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How quick we are forgotten. I did the post "Will Orioles Deal With Mets a couple of weeks ago and over 4,000 were on it. Reyes and Wright were the main pieces of discussion along with Jason Bay as part of a salary move. All of a sudden a couple of people on here are mentioned for coming up with this idea. Interesting. Just add him to our roster with a contract extension and we can all take credit for the idea and look forward to him tearing up the A.L. East in 2011.

I've been a fan of going after Reyes and Beltran. Wonder what that would take, given how much $$ the Mets would save?

3B -Trade for Dan Uggla if he's willing to extend and play 3B. This move creates a lot of roster flexibility for 3B/2B/1B and provides a power RH bat.

1B - Sign Lee - 2years. Automatically improves O's 1B production defensively and offensively.

SS & OF - trade for Reyes and Beltran, eat their final year contracts while giving up only marginal prospects and maybe Pie. $30M is a lot of money, but it is just for one year and the potential return raises the Orioles competitive level significantly. Reyes alone eliminates several significant voids for the Orioles: all-star SS/backup lead-off hitter/#2 balanced switch-hitter with speed and some pop. Will take 120 games of Beltran and his post-season 1.3 OPS if it includes Reyes. Doubt the O's would pull the trigger on this kind of move, but both players should be healthier in 2011. I would compare this kind of $30M risk to the Yankees A-Rod contract, but for just one year and much more WAR potential. If there are better long-term prospects for filling these voids cost wise...kudos. IMO, one year is better than none. Payroll would spike close to $100M, but would again drop to the $70M range with Type A/B player compensation to boot.

Imagine this lineup (or any variation of (:

Roberts 2B

Reyes SS

Markakis RF

Beltran LF/DH

Uggla 3B

Scott/Lee DH/1B

Scott/Lee DH/1B

Jones CF

Weiters C

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As your list progresses, it seems like your criteria for labeling "TOR status" change. On one hand, you've got guys like Carpenter and Santana, who have proven themselves over the long haul, and may still be elite as of this very instant, but certainly are major question marks going forward due to age and injury issues.

On the other hand, you've got guys like Price, Latos, Buchholz, and Hanson who, far from having a proven track record, have basically NO track record. I suspect no one with even a passing understanding of sabermetric evaluation of pitching would seriously prefer these players to Lee THIS SEASON...so it seems to me you must be factoring in some age-related projection with them.

But why, when considering labels like "elite" and "TOR," which necessarily require evaluation of CURRENT standing in the league (because they're by definition relational to the quality of other pitchers), should we factor in age and projection? I don't really see what age or future potential has to do with determining the upper-echelon of pitchers at this moment.

There are two pitchers in baseball who have been in the league's top 10 in FIP each of the last 3 seasons: Roy Halladay and Cliff Lee. That's fairly "elite" company. If I had to select my top tier of 5-6 ML pitchers, I'd probably go with Halladay, Lee, Lincecum, J. Johnson, Felix, and Wainwright.

The players I mentioned are players I'd prefer to have leading my rotation right now. Yes, they run the gambit from players with more established track records (than Cliff Lee) to guys whose "stuff" and potential makes me think that I'd rather have them in a game right this second than C. Lee.

As for my passing understanding (or lack thereof) of things like FIP...I already acknowledged that Lee was superb in 2008. There's simply no way around that. In 2009 Lee was 14-13...and though metrics like FIP seem perfectly tailored to let seasons like that fall into the "elite" category by limiting those factors for which pitchers are "responsible," here's how I see Lee's 2009 in a nutshell:

In wins Lee posted a 1.05 ERA, 0.910 WHIP, and a 5.63 K/BB ratio.

In losses Lee posted a 6.63 ERA, 1.768 WHIP, and a 3.32 K/BB ratio.

Point being, by and large, Lee wasn't a "tough luck loser" in 2009.

Lee pitched very well on average in his no decisions (7 ND, 2.93 ERA), though two of those games were not games wherein he definitely pitched well enough to deserve the win (6 innings, 3 ER, and 7 innings, 4 ER).

What does the above tell me? With the exception of two losses, when Lee lost, he got pounded (he had two losses where he gave up 1 ER, but he got a win where he gave up 4 ER in 7 innings...which, IMO, balances out one of those tough losses). Even giving Lee the benefit of the doubt with regards to every no decision and one of those "wins that wasn't," Lee was mediocre-to-awful in just over 35% of his 2009 starts. According to your use of metrics, a season like that allows Lee to stand with Halladay as one of the best two pitchers in baseball over the last three years. IMO, that's BS. Chalk it up to differing perspectives.

2010 was largely the same story. As I mentioned previously, multiple times, Lee wasn't very good for the Rangers. He was respectable, but not lights-out. Blame it on injuries, the ballpark, whatever...for half the season he was essentially unhittable, and for the second half...not so much. Also, again, Lee wasn't a "tough luck loser" for the most part in his 9 losses. He lost once in a game in which he only gave up 2 ER in 8 innings, once when he gave up 3 ER in 7 innings, and he gave up 4 ER or more in every other loss, often in short outings. Now, an argument can be made that Lee should've had more wins since he was mostly stellar in his ND's (again, 7 of them), but he did have 2 ND's wherein he got hit hard, but was spared the loss (both coming in the second half...go figure).

Bottom line: if you think C. Lee has been elite for three straight years, that's your right...you're entitled to your opinion. IMO, Lee's been overhyped for feast-or-famine production, and he doesn't deserve the contract he'll almost certainly get this offseason. If somebody was to put a gun to my head and demand that I choose a pitcher to throw a game tomorrow, Lee wouldn't even make my top ten. But again...that boils down to personal preference.

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If the Mets extend him and he is having a good year in 2011 at the All-Star break they won't move him if the Mets are in contention. Reflecting back on Alderson's Alfredo Griffin deal when he was with the A's I dont see Alderson keeping Reyes. The question is who has the prospects Alderson likes the best? The Orioles, Red Sox or Rays? I mentioned earlier on my Will We Deal With The Mets post that Alderson may move Wright as well and sign Beltre. He can move Beltre next year at the All-Star break if the Mets are playing poorly and get three or four more players for him like he can do now for Wright if he is tempted. He can rebuild his team just by moving players at 3B. Reyes is protection at the top of the lineup if BROB has more back issues in 2011. If BROB bats second and continues to hit doubles with Reyes leading off he will be scoring and not stopping at 3B giving BROB more RBI'S or Nick behind him another doubles machine. He is only 27 and we should deal for him only with a 3 -4 year extension. I would be open to adding Beltran if the Mets eat a lot of his contract and we are able to move Jones and others in a Greinke deal.

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Totally disagree. Reyes puts up good numbers at SS and would be a massive improvement over Izzy. The only issue is the cost in prospects, IMO, but it would make plenty of sense to have Reyes as our OD SS.

For a one year rental, in a year where we aren't going to contend, don;t you think this is kind of a big issue?

Of course if he was a FA or could be had for next to nothing, he would make perfect sense for us...But are you trading a 3-4 player package for a recently oft injured SS who is very likely to test FA after next year?

All of these one year rentals will only continue to make sense IF you can obtain them for the value of 2 draft picks or less...if you can't, then the Orioles are fools if they acquire them.

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Here's a pipedream involving Reyes that would produce a very exciting and possibly very good team:

Trade Tillman plus for Reyes.

Sign Crawford.

Sign Beltre.

Do a trade centered around Jones for Billy Butler.

Get some vet starter.

Now you have some great team speed with Reyes, Crawford, Roberts, Pie, and CPat off the bench.

The left side of the defense is improved dramatically with Beltre and Crawford. Reyes is a wildcard as he has been quite good, but not recently, so could go either way there. Pie also improves the defense in CF.

Then you could put together a lineup like this:

Roberts

Reyes

Crawford

Beltre/Butler

Scott

Betre/Butler

Markakis

Wieters

Pie

Reimold on the bench as well.

That can of course be changed up in many ways, but should be productive.

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I have had this strange feeling that we could be going after Crawford and today Tom Davis said on his show that Showalter likes Reyes and tried to trade for him when he was managing the Rangers. Probably in 2005. I saw Reyes play two games here this season and he was the best SS I saw play in person this season at OP. Maybe your prediction will come true. Crawford and Reyes along with BROB and Pie would add a lot of speed to the lineup. If you add a power bat look out. Do you think Adam Dunn would see any changeups or curveballs with BROB, Reyes or Crawford on base? That's assuming the rumor that was floating around was true. That PA said to go get Dunn. He's 31 and has hit 40 HR'S from 2005 - 2008 four years in a row and hit 38 in 2009 and 2010. How many would he hit at OP?

Has anyone heard anything more about Jon Garland and Jake Westbrook? I don't think either has signed yet. Should we put a package together to get Greinke or just try to sign Garland or Westbrook? Garland is 31 and gives his team 200+ innings a year and had a decent 2010 season. Westbrook would be 2nd choice to Garland. The Cardinals are still trying to sign him to a 2 yr deal but he wants 3 yrs.

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I have had this strange feeling that we could be going after Crawford and today Tom Davis said on his show that Showalter likes Reyes and tried to trade for him when he was managing the Rangers. Probably in 2005. I saw Reyes play two games here this season and he was the best SS I saw play in person this season at OP. Maybe your prediction will come true. Crawford and Reyes along with BROB and Pie would add a lot of speed to the lineup. If you add a power bat look out. Do you think Adam Dunn would see any changeups or curveballs with BROB, Reyes or Crawford on base? That's assuming the rumor that was floating around was true. That PA said to go get Dunn. He's 31 and has hit 40 HR'S from 2005 - 2008 four years in a row and hit 38 in 2009 and 2010. How many would he hit at OP?

Has anyone heard anything more about Jon Garland and Jake Westbrook? I don't think either has signed yet. Should we put a package together to get Greinke or just try to sign Garland or Westbrook? Garland is 31 and gives his team 200+ innings a year and had a decent 2010 season. Westbrook would be 2nd choice to Garland. The Cardinals are still trying to sign him to a 2 yr deal but he wants 3 yrs.

The Mets are not going to give Reyes away so a package of Tillman, Henandez, and Pie would need to be the starting point IMO and the Orioles would need to add another prospect to make that deal happen.

If the Orioles were to deal for Reyes, I doubt they would have the parts to land Greinke as well. If the Orioles could land one of Reyes, Grienke, Crawford or V. Martinez I would be happy with the addition.

Do I think the Orioles are going to outbid and be more appealing to Martinez than Boston, Texas, or Detroit? No. If Greinke was made available would the Orioles be willing to move the players required to make the deal happen? I doubt it.

Of all the teams that Crawford could play for why would Baltimore be the choice. He can get a bog payday from a lot of good teams, I just do not see him playing for Baltimore.

If I could make something happen I would try to deal for Reyes, sign almost anyone as an upgrade for first, and try to sign one of the average starting pitchers on the market. I wouldn't trade Britton, but I would deal Tillman.

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For a one year rental, in a year where we aren't going to contend, don;t you think this is kind of a big issue?

Of course if he was a FA or could be had for next to nothing, he would make perfect sense for us...But are you trading a 3-4 player package for a recently oft injured SS who is very likely to test FA after next year?

All of these one year rentals will only continue to make sense IF you can obtain them for the value of 2 draft picks or less...if you can't, then the Orioles are fools if they acquire them.

I don't think Reyes will cost the farm and he's been healthier than folks give him credit for - 600+ at bats for most of the past four or five years.

Reyes is a huge talent who has generated plus results and it seems this is an opportunity to buy low.

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I don't think Reyes will cost the farm and he's been healthier than folks give him credit for - 600+ at bats for most of the past four or five years.

Reyes is a huge talent who has generated plus results and it seems this is an opportunity to buy low.

The Mets aren't going to sell low on him.

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I don't think Reyes will cost the farm and he's been healthier than folks give him credit for - 600+ at bats for most of the past four or five years.

Reyes is a huge talent who has generated plus results and it seems this is an opportunity to buy low.

Reyes will be a FA after next season. Unless an extension is done, one year of Reyes is sort of pointless.

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