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Mario-Rijo
11-23-2006, 01:38 AM
....is a blast, one pure sport in itself. Actually I call it the Beautiful Game, because it has the ability to seem so perfect, sorry Futbol! But right now it's more like "The Perfect Storm". So with that thought in mind, coupled with the chaos that is Hot Stove Time I have decided to take a shot at predicting where most FA's will end up. Join me in this what I call the "Match Game"!


Let's start with let's say the top 20 remaining FA's and a few who may not be elite but who should be pivotal to his new/old teams success.

The Arms
1.) Barry Zito - Easily the best pitcher on the market or at least the biggest name. Which either way should be enough to cash in.

Prediction - NY Mets

A great fit with his ex-pitching coach Peterson there. He'll be expensive and the Mets need starting pitching in the worst way. He would rather be on the Left Coast but it's just not in the cards from where I sit. Both L.A. teams would love to have him but need offense more.

2.) Jason Schmidt - Probably a better option than Zito although older and more likely not to finish his contract if it's anything more than 4 years long (and that is a stretch IMHO).

Prediction - San Diego

The Padres need this guy to be the Ace in case Peavy's '06 season was a vision of things to come. But even if Peavy is ok you cannot necc. depend on Chris Young & Clay Hensley continuing to be your #2 & #3 starters respectively if you have visions of playing in the postseason. Simply put you need 3 good dependable starters. And from what I am hearing early on the Padres intend on going for it all this year.

3.) Greg Maddux - Likely a cheaper option than both Zito and Schmidt and a great 2nd half after being dealt to the Dodgers. And from what I have read he greatly enjoyed his time there and would like to continue if the #'s work out. The Dodgers still need him and can afford both him and a bat with Drews departure.

Prediction - Dodgers

4.) Ted Lilly - The LH is reportedly looking for 4 yrs and around 40 million and chances are slim that he or Toronto truly could come to terms after last years "alledged" clubhouse brawl with manager Gibbons who is still there. Sure they are saying all the right things but Lilly is better suited to return to the pinstripes where Cash-Man has freed up some extra ducketts by ridding themselves of Jaret Wright and Gary Sheffields contracts. Plus it's just a matter of time before the Yanks break open the bank this off-season and what better way to do it than a LH starting pitcher who is a former Yankee and knows the division intimately.

Prediction - NYY

5.) Gil Meche - Meche is a strange case because he has alot of upside but hasn't had the success that comes with a guy who possesses such upside. He will have plenty of suitors because it's baseball and he can throw a ball in the vicinity of 90 MPH and has a pulse. My guess is since he is more of a Flyball pitcher he will at least wanna go somewhere that has a solid OF defense coupled with a team that can compete since he has spent a few years now toiling away in Seattle where they aren't currently competing. The Cubs want him but that OF is not set (and likely won't be for the next 8 years) and pitching in Wrigley can terrify some. My gut says Dave Duncan can figure this guy out and make him a 20 game winner.

Prediction - Cardinals

6.) Vicente Padilla - Hardnosed competitor, good stuff, keeps it in the park well enough to play in any park judging from where he's pitched I.E. Philly, Texas. But a bit of a D'LO (not all the way of course). Probably looking for his final payday so it must be somewhere with $$$.

Prediction - Cubs

7.) Randy Wolf - Coming of off a season in which he was starting his comeback from TJ surjery. Could be that he decides to sign a 1 yr deal to prove his ability to pitch and then come back next season for the bigger $$$'s. If healthy a more than capable #3 pitcher. My guess is he will still end up signing a 3-4 yr deal anyway because teams figure he is a solid candidate to bounce back fully and he is worth the gamble.

Prediction - Houston

8.) Roger Clemens - Will he retire this time? Really the question is will Petite return? And if so will they both end up in Houston? My guess is Petite moves on to either the NYY or Retirement. So that my friends should signal the end of Clemens coming back to Houston IMO. He has 348 career wins does he really need 2 more to be considered any better, I don't think so.

Prediction - Retirement

9.) Danys Baez - Looks like he wants to be a closer, but would settle for a set-up job if it's the right money/contender (Mets, Dodgers etc.). But I think Closer is want he really wants so I would say hmmmm, tough one here. Wherever he goes it should be somewhere they play good IF defense with his style and more likely a smaller park (Less room for his BIP to get away).

Prediction - Reds

10.) Joe Borowski - Solid guy bounced back nicely last year in a spacious park with solid defense. Is probably now out of the Marlins price range, but shouldn't be. He is the same as Baez in that he prefers to be a Closer but is open to a set-up role. Should come a bit cheaper than Baez due to age and he is less of a K guy.

Prediction - Cubs

The Rest:
Adam Eaton: Rangers
Jeff Suppan: Houston
Jeff Weaver: St. Louis
Woody Williams: S.D.
Tom Glavine: (He's a top 3 pitcher but will only play for 2 teams) Mets
Andy Petite: Retirement
Toma Ohka: Boston (The Sox look to be signing Matsuzaka and what Ohka to help translate the game and help him in other ways off the field).
Steve Trachsel: Mets
Mark Mulder: D-Backs
Eric Gagne: Dodgers
Kip Wells: Rangers
Dan Kolb: Rockies
David Weathers: Marlins
Chad Bradford: Mets
Miguel Batista: D-Backs
Tony Armas Jr.: D-Rays


The Bats

1.) Carlos Lee - From the looks of it he is very close to signing with either the Astros or Orioles. Had a face-to-face with Purpura today so I am thinking Lee to the astros seeing as how he has a Ranch near Houston.

Prediction - Astros

2.) J.D. Drew - Wow he could land in a host of places. But he is a very good offensive player and solid defensive guy who can also run the bases. LH bat who can play any OF position. This is all assuming he can stay healthy and passionate, 2 words that you cannot attribute to him. But production is the name of the game so somebody is going to get desperate and give up the moon for this kid. My gut says the O's could be that team but he is prone to not like certain ML cities. He would likely play RF there and that's not necc. a good fit with their youth in the OF. They are looking more for a 1B/DH. He could play CF in a smaller park and it would also spice up those power #'s.

Prediction - Rangers

3.) Julio Lugo - A guy who wants paid who can hit & run like the dickens but defense is a bit subpar. Looking for somewhere in the vicinity of 4 yr 32 mill. Probably feels more comfortable in the AL because of his familiarity with the league. Sounds like a good fit for a team that loves it's offense but understands the importance of defense. But will still likely end up playing 2B in the AL East.

Prediction - Red Sox

4.) Dave Roberts - Need a veteran CF and a top of the lineup bat. Willing to pay 4 yr and approx. 20 mill. He's your man! and with Bruce Bochy heading to S.F. and his age over 35 he's a perfect fit there.

Prediction - S.F.

5.) Mike Piazza - I think even Mike knows his days of catching are over although he will likely get some token games there just to make him feel good about it. He will likely need to DH now because he is incapable of playing any other position. He's a west coast guy and he is likely cheaper than Bonds.

Prediction - Oakland

6.) Barry Bonds - Look he is going to have to quit this charade. There is only one true place he will play. Because that's the only place he is liked.

Prediction - S.F.

7.) Rich Aurilia - I don't believe he comes back now that the Reds have signed a full time starter in the IF. HIs offense and his leadership were nice but he belongs out on the west coast where he wants to be playing full time 1B. I'm sure it's simply a matter of fine tuning this deal and perhaps waiting until 12/8/06 to see if the Reds offer Arbitration (which I am sure he will promptly turn down).

Prediction - S.F.

8.) Bengie Molina - Not a great catchers market this year especially when one of the few teams who are really in the market is the team who you played for last year, and whom you played below avg defense for, and who paid you more than you are likely to receive this go around. But you may be stubborn and hold out because you feel you are worth more. Sorry Gregg Zaun will be the starter and the Jays will find a cheaper back-up. I see '07 being a bad year for one of the Bros. Molina. And it's a shame because he is an outstanding hitting catcher.

Prediction - I have no idea, Florence Freedom?

9.) Adam Kennedy - Looks like this could be a tough one for Kennedy as well. 4 yrs. 20 Mill. is the price tag and although lots of teams are in the market for a 2B none probably wanna pay that kind of Do-Rey-Mee for a 30 yr old with somewhat diminishing skills. But fortunately he is a gamer type who is solid in most areas but just unspectacular in any. My gut says he might get 4 yrs if he drops his asking price a few million to about 17-18 mill.

Prediction - Toronto

10.) Luis Gonzales - A good LH run producer but not a great OF anymore due to lack of a solid arm. Could be a perfect fit for a team with a small park and need of a good RBI man. Would prefer to stay out west in the NL but those teams are not a good fit. Was rumored to be close with St. Louis on a 1 yr deal.

Prediction - Cardinals


The others:

Ray Durham: S.F.
Mark Loretta: S.D.
Cliff Floyd: Cubs
David Dellucci: Pirates
Shannon Stewart: Reds
Kevin Millar: Reds
Jose Guillen: Phillies
Shea Hillenbrand: NYY
Aubrey Huff: Detroit
Jay Payton: Oakland
Tony Graffinino: Cardinals
Ron Belliard: Red Sox (To be Manny's caddy)
Craig Wilson: Nationals
Pedro Feliz: Angels
Doug Meintkiewicz: O's
Eduardo Perez: Marlins
Rod Barajas: Colorado

As far as Starting Pitchers for us:
Reds Trade Brandon Watson & Joey Votto to Cleveland for Jake Westbrook.

BEETTLEBUG
11-23-2006, 05:40 AM
Would Watson and Votto get us Westbrook? Would it be possible to sign Bengie Molina for say 2yrs with option for third and trade one of either Ross or Valentin? It would make our defense and offense better.

mth123
11-23-2006, 09:32 AM
Would Watson and Votto get us Westbrook? Would it be possible to sign Bengie Molina for say 2yrs with option for third and trade one of either Ross or Valentin? It would make our defense and offense better.

I think the Inidans are going to eventually move Martinez to 1B and may not want Votto. Watson is a nothing. I'm not sure the reds excess matches up well to get Westbrook. I like him, just not sure there is a match there. I'd trade Griffey for him if he'd go. Griffey would help them in LF and batting 5th or so. He won't go there to do that any more than he won't want to do it here though.

Mario-Rijo
11-24-2006, 02:03 AM
I think there is a very good chance that they would consider Votto and Hopper for Westbrook. I just would start the offer with Watson and Votto. They still need solid COF options, and Broussard will likely be with another team. Yes they have already begun Martinez to 1st (22 games played there in '06) but who knows how he will pan out (defensively) and Votto has a reputation as an above average fielder with a nice LH bat.

It wouldn't surprise me if they took Just Votto himself for Westbrook. Heck I might even offer Gary Majewski/Cormier and Hopper for him. Lord knows they need BP help like nobodys business.

cinredsfan2000
11-24-2006, 11:26 AM
If we were to somehow come away with westbrook how would he project into the rotaion? Does he become our #1 or would he Be#2 and bump Arroyo down to #3? just curious as im on the east cost and dont see/here next to anything about the indians it's all yankees /mets /red sox :confused:

cincy09
11-24-2006, 11:33 AM
I think Harang will stay the #1. To me he is our franchise pitcher.

Patrick Bateman
11-24-2006, 11:43 AM
I think there is a very good chance that they would consider Votto and Hopper for Westbrook. I just would start the offer with Watson and Votto.

Sadly, Watson is one of our better pitching prospects. I would much rather have him than a journeyman OF who is easily replaceable.

blumj
11-24-2006, 12:03 PM
If we were to somehow come away with westbrook how would he project into the rotaion? Does he become our #1 or would he Be#2 and bump Arroyo down to #3? just curious as im on the east cost and dont see/here next to anything about the indians it's all yankees /mets /red sox :confused:
Harang's still #1. IMO, Arroyo and Westbrook are basically even, so, either way.

Joseph
11-24-2006, 12:51 PM
Sadly, Watson is one of our better pitching prospects. I would much rather have him than a journeyman OF who is easily replaceable.

Isn't Brandon Watson the OFer we picked up on waivers from the Nats and Sean Watson the relief prospect from UT?

I might be mixing names.

edabbs44
11-24-2006, 12:54 PM
Isn't Brandon Watson the OFer we picked up on waivers from the Nats and Sean Watson the relief prospect from UT?

I might be mixing names.

You are correct. Sean Watson can't be traded until next year.

Mario-Rijo
11-24-2006, 01:04 PM
Originally posted by Joseph
Isn't Brandon Watson the OFer we picked up on waivers from the Nats and Sean Watson the relief prospect from UT?

I might be mixing names.


Yes Brandon is who I was talking about and he is the OF you speak of.



Originally posted by cinredsfan2000
If we were to somehow come away with westbrook how would he project into the rotaion? Does he become our #1 or would he Be#2 and bump Arroyo down to #3? just curious as im on the east cost and dont see/here next to anything about the indians it's all yankees /mets /red sox

My gut says Harang-Arroyo-Westbrook-Milton-Elizardo is your best 5 man rotation. That is assuming Homer isn't ready just yet, if he is I would put him 4th and Milton 5th. And if you look at it each starter is really alot different than the next which makes for a challenging mix for offenses.

Patrick Bateman
11-24-2006, 01:05 PM
Isn't Brandon Watson the OFer we picked up on waivers from the Nats and Sean Watson the relief prospect from UT?

I might be mixing names.

I missed Brandon Watson's name in the original post, and then I saw MR's secind post suggesting a trade of Watson. I forgot we still had Brandon kicking around and read it as Sean watson.

My mistake.

RedEye
11-24-2006, 02:05 PM
Let me first say, Mario-Rijo, that this is a fantastic post. I'm really impressed by your thorough analysis of all of these players. I think Baez would make a lot of sense for the Reds, and I think we are as likley as any team to sign him. I was, however, wondering what other people thought about the two FA hitters you suggest: Millar and Stewart.

Personally, I wouldn't mind signing Kevin Millar. His name doesn't exactly knock your socks off, but he's a solid veteran presence who could platoon with Hatte or provide some pop off the bench.

Shannon Stewart is a different story in my book. I actually really liked his game about five or six years ago--a speedy OF with good defense and surprising pop. He had an amazing second half with the Twins a couple of years ago that even had some people talking AL MVP. However, he's turned into a bit of an albatross recently, and seems to be injured more than he is on the field. If he stayed healthy, he'd be a significant upgrade over Jr. in CF, but that seems to be quite a big if.

My own secret hope is that Krivksy will find a way to land Vernon Wells and Bengie Molina. That would be a dream defense up the middle and would really upgrade our overall support of our pitchers... but I know that will never happen.

mth123
11-24-2006, 02:32 PM
I don't have any interest in Stewart. He can't play CF and doesn't provide the Pop needed.

Millar would be a good acquisition for the platoon.

Mario-Rijo
11-24-2006, 02:40 PM
Actually the reason I listed Stewart was as a high OBP% COF player. A guy who doesn't K alot, is someone Krivsky is familiar with and should come cheap because he must prove that his foot is healed. He had some problem with his foot last season. Of course this signing would only happen if he could show that his foot is at least in solid shape to begin with and the smaller 1 yr contract would be to see if it would hold up over a full season. He would make an ideal #2 hitter which is what I think this team lacks.

mth123
11-24-2006, 02:45 PM
Actually the reason I listed Stewart was as a high OBP% COF player. A guy who doesn't K alot, is someone Krivsky is familiar with and should come cheap because he must prove that his foot is healed. He had some problem with his foot last season. Of course this signing would only happened if he could show that his foot is at least in solid shape to begin with and the smaller 1 yr contract would be to see if it would hold up over a full season. He would make an ideal #2 hitter which is what I think this team lacks.

Then you assume Griffey or Dunn are gone? If so the replacement needs to have a lot of power.

Mario-Rijo
11-24-2006, 02:53 PM
No I am working off the assumption that Griffey stays and he somehow is allowed to stay in CF. It's unfortunate but I think it's possible.

mth123
11-24-2006, 02:56 PM
No I am working off the assumption that Griffey stays and he somehow is allowed to stay in CF. It's unfortunate but I think it's possible.

Its very possible. If so, nothing else they do may matter much IMO. Even so, Stewart can't play RF any better than CF. If keeping Griffey in CF is the plan, then I'm on board for Jay Payton or Trot Nixon. I prefer Payton.

Mario-Rijo
11-24-2006, 03:03 PM
I can certainly live with Payton. However why do you feel Stewart cannot play RF?

mth123
11-24-2006, 04:05 PM
I can certainly live with Payton. However why do you feel Stewart cannot play RF?

Never been good OF. No arm.

Mario-Rijo
11-24-2006, 05:05 PM
Never been good OF. No arm.

I am assuming you mean he is a bad OF because of No arm. If that's the case I can live with it, if you mean he is a bad OF and he has no arm then I might be inclined to agree with ya. But I believe it's the former and not the latter and therefore because he is such a solid offensive player I can live with no arm as long as he can get to alot of balls.

Something else here I wonder if we could deal Votto to Pittsburgh for Xavier Nady? That might be a solid bat on the rise we could get.

mth123
11-24-2006, 07:24 PM
He's a bad OF and he has no arm.

Shaknb8k
11-25-2006, 12:48 AM
Just read on rotoworld that the Reds have shown interest in Greg Zaun....not real sure if there is anything to read into this but if they did then would Zaun be able to take over as an everyday catcher? If he could then a trade involving Ross would definatly be in the works.