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Spitball
12-31-2006, 10:18 PM
I saw this on the MLB Trade Rumor site:


Milledge-Blanton Swap?
Ray Ratto of the San Francisco Chronicle slipped in this nugget:

"The Athletics are likely to also dispatch their winningest pitcher, Joe Blanton, to New York as part of a deal that would fetch one of Billy Beane's longest-held desirables, outfielder Lastings Milledge."

I'm not sure if Ratto is just making this assumption based on past rumors from this winter, or if this is a brand new rumor. But he seems fairly certain that Blanton will be dealt. That would leave the A's with a Haren-Loaiza-Harden-Kennedy rotation, with a fifth starter battle between Chad Gaudin, Jason Windsor, Kirk Saarloos, and the like.

A groundballer like Blanton could be a nice fit for the Mets, whose middle infield defense was among the game's best in 2006.

The Mets would have to be pretty desperate at this point to deal Milledge for Blanton because I believe they've turned down better players in the past. But, if the Mets' deal fails, I'd like to see the Reds make a run at this guy. His WHIP was 1.54 and his ERA was just south of 5, but his other numbers were not too bad. Really, he reminds me a bit of Jeff Suppan. Like Suppan, he is streaky, pitches in the high eighties, and mixes his pitches well. But, he is young enough to make improvement, especially against National League line-ups, and he is an available, affordable (salary-wise) starting pitcher.

I wouldn't have given up top pitching prospects for one year of Jason Jennings, but I'd package Travis Wood, or any pitcher not named Bailey, along with Denorfia or Freel and perhaps even Todd Coffey for Blanton.

Falls City Beer
12-31-2006, 10:26 PM
I saw this on the MLB Trade Rumor site:



The Mets would have to be pretty desperate at this point to deal Milledge for Blanton because I believe they've turned down better players in the past. But, if the Mets' deal fails, I'd like to see the Reds make a run at this guy. His WHIP was 1.54 and his ERA was just south of 5, but his other numbers were not too bad. Really, he reminds me a bit of Jeff Suppan. Like Suppan, he is streaky, pitches in the high eighties, and mixes his pitches well. But, he is young enough to make improvement, especially against National League line-ups, and he is an available, affordable (salary-wise) starting pitcher.

I wouldn't have given up top pitching prospects for one year of Jason Jennings, but I'd package Travis Wood, or any pitcher not named Bailey, along with Denorfia or Freel and perhaps even Todd Coffey for Blanton.


Blanton was awful last season--in a huge park. Was he injured?

mth123
12-31-2006, 10:27 PM
I saw this on the MLB Trade Rumor site:



The Mets would have to be pretty desperate at this point to deal Milledge for Blanton because I believe they've turned down better players in the past. But, if the Mets' deal fails, I'd like to see the Reds make a run at this guy. His WHIP was 1.54 and his ERA was just south of 5, but his other numbers were not too bad. Really, he reminds me a bit of Jeff Suppan. Like Suppan, he is streaky, pitches in the high eighties, and mixes his pitches well. But, he is young enough to make improvement, especially against National League line-ups, and he is an available, affordable (salary-wise) starting pitcher.

I wouldn't have given up top pitching prospects for one year of Jason Jennings, but I'd package Travis Wood, or any pitcher not named Bailey, along with Denorfia or Freel and perhaps even Todd Coffey for Blanton.

I'd do Freel and Wood for Blanton. Not sure Oakland would. I can't see that team trading for a guy who makes so many outs on the bases. Oak may want one of the young relievers. Probably Coutlangus to add a useful LH to the organization.

Blanton had a .341 BABIP, his numbers will get better. Wheels suggested him in October.

If the Reds got Blanton they could probably turn around and trade Lohse for a replacement for whatever prospect they lose.

Betterread
12-31-2006, 10:50 PM
Joe Blanton is an ideal #3 starter for the Reds and if he is really available I would aggressively pursue a trade. I wouldn't trade Bailey or Bruce for him, but I would consider any other prospect in our system. Wood and Freel works. If I were the Mets, I would deal Milledge for Blanton. But why would the A's trade him, when they just lost Zito?

mth123
12-31-2006, 10:58 PM
Joe Blanton is an ideal #3 starter for the Reds and if he is really available I would aggressively pursue a trade. I wouldn't trade Bailey or Bruce for him, but I would consider any other prospect in our system. Wood and Freel works. If I were the Mets, I would deal Milledge for Blanton. But why would the A's trade him, when they just lost Zito?

I think from their perspective they played 2006 w/o Harden and he effectively replaces Zito (and he'll be better if he's healthy). They want to move Joe Kennedy into the rotation and unload Blanton prior to arbitration.

Spitball
12-31-2006, 11:08 PM
I'd do Freel and Wood for Blanton. Not sure Oakland would. I can't see that team trading for a guy who makes so many outs on the bases. Oak may want one of the young relievers. Probably Coutlangus to add a useful LH to the organization.

Freel surely wouldn't be running in Oakland, but his speed in the outfield might be attractive to them.


Blanton had a .341 BABIP, his numbers will get better. Wheels suggested him in October.

Plus, he is young and advanced enough to be an asset as a number three type starter for a few more years. With the going rate for number three/four starters going through the roof, I'd say Blanton would be a wise target if he is truly available.

Upgrading the number three spot in the rotation represents a huge swing in the Reds chances next season. Adding Blanton would give the Reds 100 games started by pitchers who averaged better than 15 wins last season.

BTW, I understand Ohka had a fairly major drop in velocity last season which has teams scary of signing him for the type of money he will undoubtedly command.

mth123
12-31-2006, 11:16 PM
Freel surely wouldn't be running in Oakland, but his speed in the outfield might be attractive to them.



Plus, he is young and advanced enough to be an asset as a number three type starter for a few more years. With the going rate for number three/four starters going through the roof, I'd say Blanton would be a wise target if he is truly available.

Upgrading the number three spot in the rotation represents a huge swing in the Reds chances next season. Adding Blanton would give the Reds 100 games started by pitchers who averaged better than 15 wins last season.

BTW, I understand Ohka had a fairly major drop in velocity last season which has teams scary of signing him for the type of money he will undoubtedly command.

Agree. Acquiring Blanton would certainly change my outlook. Blanton is far better than Ohka.

KoryMac5
12-31-2006, 11:39 PM
Don't waste your time thinking about Blanton. Beane is enamored with Milledge for some reason and will more than likely bite on this deal.

wally post
12-31-2006, 11:53 PM
Don't waste your time thinking about Blanton. Beane is enamored with Milledge for some reason and will more than likely bite on this deal.

If so - he'll regret it.

redsandrails
01-01-2007, 01:05 AM
What about Brad Halsey? I wouldn't give up much for him but he seems way underrated... A Freel type should easy snag him.

GAC
01-01-2007, 04:57 AM
I think from their perspective they played 2006 w/o Harden and he effectively replaces Zito (and he'll be better if he's healthy). They want to move Joe Kennedy into the rotation and unload Blanton prior to arbitration.

This is what simply amazes me about the As (Beane). Here they want to unload a guy prior to arbitration, which would be interpreted by some as being cheap, yet it's because they have someone behind him that they want to move into the rotation.

Geez I wish the Reds had a system where they could do that.

TheBigLebowski
01-01-2007, 10:02 AM
Lastings Milledge has the highest upside of almost any minor league prospect around. Why the hell would Joe Blanton be able to fetch him? I know pitching is at a premium, but every major league team has a guy in the minors who projects to be a Joe Blanton type. Silliness.

Obviously, I'd like to have him in a Reds uniform. Not saying he is not a good pitcher. Problem is, if a Milledge-type player is the price tag, I hope we pass.

wheels
01-01-2007, 10:19 AM
If good outfielders weren't so scarce in the Reds system, I'd dangle Jay Bruce for him.

Blanton's due for some SERIOUS hit luck in '07, and Beane knows it. That's probably why he's asking for a high profile guy like Milledge in return.

Betterread
01-01-2007, 10:50 AM
Lastings Milledge has the highest upside of almost any minor league prospect around. Why the hell would Joe Blanton be able to fetch him? I know pitching is at a premium, but every major league team has a guy in the minors who projects to be a Joe Blanton type. Silliness.

Obviously, I'd like to have him in a Reds uniform. Not saying he is not a good pitcher. Problem is, if a Milledge-type player is the price tag, I hope we pass.

The Reds have an outfielder in their system whose production in his first full year of pro ball was superior to any of Milledge's 3 years - Jay Bruce. I would not offer him in trade for Blanton.
Who do you think projects to be a Joe Blanton type (#3 starter - a workhorse with 4 ML average or better pitches) in the Reds System?

Falls City Beer
01-01-2007, 11:03 AM
Help me out here--why should we be interested in a guy who doesn't strike anybody out and is terribly easy to hit? I ask again: was he nursing an inury?

mth123
01-01-2007, 12:01 PM
Help me out here--why should we be interested in a guy who doesn't strike anybody out and is terribly easy to hit? I ask again: was he nursing an inury?

Low walks, low HR and hits were at least in part due to bad luck (.341 BABIP). Get that down to normal with his other peripherals and he's OK at the #3 spot. Better than Lohse.

I share your concern about the ball park factor though. Oakland helps pitchers quite a bit. But moving to the NL away from the DH could offset that somewhat. His 2006 is similar to Arroyo's 2005.

He had a pretty good 2005. He'll be 26 next season and under his team's control for several years. Worth a diminished utility with no clear place to play like Freel and a far away prospect IMO.

Jpup
01-01-2007, 12:10 PM
Help me out here--why should we be interested in a guy who doesn't strike anybody out and is terribly easy to hit? I ask again: was he nursing an inury?

I'll have to go back and check, but I believe he missed some time last year with injury problems. To answer you question with my opinion, the guy just isn't that good. I've watched him pitch several times and I haven't been impressed. Sure, I would like to see him on the Reds because the alternatives are grim, but he's just not a top of the rotation arm, at least not yet.

Spitball
01-01-2007, 12:43 PM
I'll have to go back and check, but I believe he missed some time last year with injury problems.

The guy made 31 starts and was third on their staff in games started. If he was injured, he must have pretty much pitched through it.


To answer you question with my opinion, the guy just isn't that good. I've watched him pitch several times and I haven't been impressed. Sure, I would like to see him on the Reds because the alternatives are grim, but he's just not a top of the rotation arm, at least not yet.

No, he isn't a top of the rotation type, but he would nicely fill the Reds' most dire need, a pitcher to upgade the number three spot in the rotation. A number one or two would be better, of course, but not as realistic.

BTW, Blanton is a ground ball pitcher who may have suffered from injuries to middle infielders Crosby and Ellis.

Jpup
01-01-2007, 12:55 PM
The guy made 31 starts and was third on their staff in games started. If he was injured, he must have pretty much pitched through it.

you are right, I guess I was thinking of someone else. That's why I said I would have to check. Looking at his numbers, they don't look great, but your theory about missing the middle infielders could be right. He doesn't strike out many, let's up a lot of hits. His poor September also made his numbers looks worse than what they were. His ERA in the month was 6.61. Maybe he hit the wall after throwing nearly 400 innings in 2 seasons.

Spitball
01-01-2007, 01:15 PM
His poor September also made his numbers looks worse than what they were. His ERA in the month was 6.61. Maybe he hit the wall after throwing nearly 400 innings in 2 seasons.

Well, like I said before, he is a lot like Jeff Suppan in many ways, and that includes being streaky.

Falls City Beer
01-01-2007, 01:40 PM
Low walks, low HR and hits were at least in part due to bad luck (.341 BABIP). Get that down to normal with his other peripherals and he's OK at the #3 spot. Better than Lohse.

I share your concern about the ball park factor though. Oakland helps pitchers quite a bit. But moving to the NL away from the DH could offset that somewhat. His 2006 is similar to Arroyo's 2005.

He had a pretty good 2005. He'll be 26 next season and under his team's control for several years. Worth a diminished utility with no clear place to play like Freel and a far away prospect IMO.

His walks, unfortunately, aren't that low. Not low enough to offset his hittability. I know people are searching for the "next Arroyo" far and wide, but Blanton isn't he.

I'd jump off a bridge if the Reds gave up Bruce to get him.

Johnny Footstool
01-01-2007, 01:47 PM
Blanton is exactly the kind of pitcher the Reds need to avoid. He isn't really very good, but he had one good season in the recent past, making everyone think he can repeat his prior success.

I think Blanton's 2005 season relied heavily on good luck, and his 2006 represented something closer to the norm.

The guy has a horrifyingly low K/9. Haven't the Reds had enough of those "pitch to contact" types?

mth123
01-01-2007, 03:00 PM
His walks, unfortunately, aren't that low. Not low enough to offset his hittability. I know people are searching for the "next Arroyo" far and wide, but Blanton isn't he.

I'd jump off a bridge if the Reds gave up Bruce to get him.

I wouldn't give Bruce either. Freel and Wood For Blanton and the ability to dump Lohse is the return I'm looking for. Dumping Lohse is a big part of the benefit.

pedro
01-01-2007, 03:23 PM
I wouldn't give Bruce either. Freel and Wood For Blanton and the ability to dump Lohse is the return I'm looking for. Dumping Lohse is a big part of the benefit.


I'm not convinced that Blanton is all that much better than Lohse.

If the Reds are going to trade Freel & Wood I think the Reds should target someone better.

The biggest advantage Blanton appears to have over Lohse is salary.

mth123
01-01-2007, 04:05 PM
I'm not convinced that Blanton is all that much better than Lohse.

If the Reds are going to trade Freel & Wood I think the Reds should target someone better.

The biggest advantage Blanton appears to have over Lohse is salary.

Lohse is a Free Agent after 2007. No way to win. If through some miracle he pitches well he's lost anyway, he pitches poorly he's overpriced. The lower price with Blanton is a significant advantage. If either guy pitches like 2005 they'd be OK in the 3 slot. Blanton is younger cheaper and can be more of a long-term guy.

I guess I prefer Blanton because Lohse has had multiple bad years to prove he sucks (2003, 2004 and 2006) where Blanton had only his sophmore slump in 2006 (driven largely by bad luck). I'd rather have cheaper, longer period of control, younger, with less proof he sucks.

In this market I'm not sure you'll get a better emerging pitcher than Blanton for a Wood and Freel package. And next year Freel won't be there signed so cheaply to package and he'll be facing his age 32 season in 2008. He's also highly likely to go the whole 2007 season with no time in the IF which further reduces the value he had from his versatility. Time to move Freel is now or lose him for nothing.

As I said in my first post, I find it hard to believe that the A's would want Freel.

Falls City Beer
01-01-2007, 04:07 PM
See, to me this is exactly what happens when you don't seize the opportunity to pick up real value in a guy like Jennings--you begin to slobber over less appetizing fluff pitchers like Blanton because they're the only tablescraps left.

Getting it done right is very important, but so is getting it done early. When you "wait for the market to settle" you get the things that settle to the bottom. And that usually doesn't taste very good.

RedLegSuperStar
01-01-2007, 04:07 PM
I'd welcome Blanton.. this team over the past few years hasn't been getting younger in the pitching department and a young arm with some upside would be better then these Kim's, Mays's, Michalak's, Williams's, etc..

Spitball
01-01-2007, 04:08 PM
If the Reds are going to trade Freel & Wood I think the Reds should target someone better.

I don't think that is realistic in this day and age. Look at what the Astros gave up to get Jason Jennings, and then look at how Jennings pitched between 2003-2005. You can throw the ballpark factor in there and at worst you can say they were at least about equal.

The Reds need a pitcher to slide somewhere into the first three slots. They don't have much to trade outside of Freel and a prospect. Who else is available for that price?

Jpup
01-01-2007, 04:12 PM
See, to me this is exactly what happens when you don't seize the opportunity to pick up real value in a guy like Jennings--you begin to slobber over less appetizing fluff pitchers like Blanton because they're the only tablescraps left.

Getting it done right is very important, but so is getting it done early. When you "wait for the market to settle" you get the things that settle to the bottom. And that usually doesn't taste very good.

I'm not interested in trading Homer Bailey for the like of Jennings. That's basically what the Astros did. They got raped on the trade, there is nothing that shows otherwise. The Rockies got rid of him before they lost him to free agency and got a great return for him.

Falls City Beer
01-01-2007, 04:16 PM
I'm not interested in trading Homer Bailey for the like of Jennings. That's basically what the Astros did. They got raped on the trade, there is nothing that shows otherwise. The Rockies got rid of him before they lost him to free agency and got a great return for him.

Let's not go crazy. The Rockies got a kid who got destroyed in his MLB cup of coffee last season...but NOTHING else of worth came over in that deal.

The trade is a gamble for both sides, but if I'm laying money on a horse, I'm going with the one who's logged (very healthily I might add) some tough innings at altitude only to continue to improve on his numbers as the years have worn on.

I like guys trending in the right direction, not HUGE question mark kids like Hirsh.

Jpup
01-01-2007, 04:19 PM
Let's not go crazy. The Rockies got a kid who got destroyed in his MLB cup of coffee last season...but NOTHING else of worth came over in that deal.

The trade is a gamble for both sides, but if I'm laying money on a horse, I'm going with the one who's logged (very healthily I might add) some tough innings at altitude only to continue to improve on his numbers as the years have worn on.

I like guys trending in the right direction, not HUGE question mark kids like Hirsh.

Taveras is a very good defender and can be valuable if used correctly and that other pitcher they got, some used to be pretty high on him. The Astros FO is worse than the Reds and it's not even close IMO.

Falls City Beer
01-01-2007, 04:20 PM
The Astros FO is worse than the Reds and it's not even close IMO.

I'd say the jury is still very much out on that assessment.

Jpup
01-01-2007, 04:37 PM
I'd say the jury is still very much out on that assessment.

Let's look at what the Astros have done in the offseason.

They resigned Craig Biggio and his .306 OBP to a 1 year deal. Roger Clemens has 1 foot out the door, on his way to Boston or New York. Aubrey Huff went to Baltimore. Anybody that gives Carlos Lee that much money for that long has serious issues. Andy Pettitte is again a Yankee. Russ Springer joined their division rivals and they gave Woody Williams a 2 year contract at the end of his career. Paul Wilson was invited to spring training.

They have a catcher that is 37 years old and an outfield that is among the worst in the National League. They don't have anything resembling good in their rotation after #3.

I would say that Purpura is pretty awful.

Jpup
01-01-2007, 04:41 PM
Also, I would like to add, the Astros farm system is also in shambles.

mth123
01-01-2007, 04:43 PM
Let's not go crazy. The Rockies got a kid who got destroyed in his MLB cup of coffee last season...but NOTHING else of worth came over in that deal.

The trade is a gamble for both sides, but if I'm laying money on a horse, I'm going with the one who's logged (very healthily I might add) some tough innings at altitude only to continue to improve on his numbers as the years have worn on.

I like guys trending in the right direction, not HUGE question mark kids like Hirsh.

I too prefer Jennings over Blanton. The Problem is that the Reds, even if they would have been inclined to do the deal, had no one to match Hirsch. Bailey is rated significantly higher than Hirsch and would have been an overpayment. The reds didn't really have another guy with the combination of upside, cost and major league readiness to get Jennings. I agree that Tavares and Buchholz aren't much (I thought you were high on Buchholz by the way).

One thing that Spitball is right about is that the Reds need to be acquiring assets that they can control for a few years to improve the teams talent base. Blanton, even if he turns out to be only a number 4 type starter for his career would be one. Freel after this year, really isn't. Wood is too far away to be counted upon and seemed to backslide last year. In the thin Pitching market, having young cheap guys to fill the 4th and 5th spots is very important. It keeps teams from paying $6 Million to guys like Steve Trachsel and our very own Kyle Lohse. Having that money available is what would allow the team to sign a guy like Harang or get somebody else for the top 3 spots.

Harang, Arroyo and Blanton would be the best trio the Reds have had in a while.

Jpup
01-01-2007, 04:46 PM
Harang, Arroyo and Blanton would be the best trio the Reds have had in a while.

that is some faint praise. :D

Johnny Footstool
01-02-2007, 09:39 AM
Can someone please tell me what Blanton does well? I'm not seeing anything.

PuffyPig
01-02-2007, 09:54 AM
Jennings would have beena nice pick up, to be sure, but he's 1 year away from FA. A trade like that only makes sense from the Red's viewpoint if he is the missing piece to a real contender, otherwise you've mortgaged your future to play .500.

If I was trading Bailey for a pitcher, I'd want a Haren type return. The problem with that type of deal, is there's no particular reason why the A's would trade a Haren, unless he was injured.

redsandrails
01-02-2007, 10:17 AM
I'd say we missed out on Arroyo v. 2.0. That was Freddy Garcia.

M2
01-02-2007, 12:43 PM
I'd love to see the Reds land Blanton. He's exactly the kind of pitcher the team should be after. He's young. He's learned on the job the last two years and he's an excellent bet to start missing more bats in the coming years.

Jaycint
01-02-2007, 02:16 PM
I'd love to see the Reds land Blanton. He's exactly the kind of pitcher the team should be after. He's young. He's learned on the job the last two years and he's an excellent bet to start missing more bats in the coming years.

Why is he more likely to start missing bats the next few years? Not arguing the point, just curious as to what factors would lead you to think this? Just natural maturation process? Learning the batters around the league? Better command of all his pitches? Combination of the above? Looking at his numbers his k/9 rate seems to be pretty pedestrian...

M2
01-02-2007, 02:27 PM
Why is he more likely to start missing bats the next few years? Not arguing the point, just curious as to what factors would lead you to think this? Just natural maturation process? Learning the batters around the league? Better command of all his pitches? Combination of the above? Looking at his numbers his k/9 rate seems to be pretty pedestrian...

Big frame, good movement on his pitches, 8.33 minor league K/9. Overall his minor league numbers were a tick better than Aaron Harang's, who also rose through the A's system. It took Harang roughly 300 innings to settle into the majors. Blanton's pitched 400 IP to date and he just turned 26 (Harang was 27 when he bust through in 2005), which should put him in just about the right spot to take a decisive step forward.

flyer85
01-02-2007, 02:33 PM
I think Blanton is a guy who could blossom, however, I feel certain the asking price is way too high for what the Reds are willing to pay.

M2
01-02-2007, 02:34 PM
I think Blanton is a guy who could blossom, however, I feel certain the asking price is way too high for what the Reds are willing to pay.

What's the asking price?

Falls City Beer
01-02-2007, 02:36 PM
What's the asking price?

Apparently more than Milledge. But it's all speculation.

flyer85
01-02-2007, 02:38 PM
What's the asking price?I read somewhere the A's wanted Milledge and another prospect(and the Mets don't have many, especially since Humber was shut down in the AFL).

I would see it as the Reds dealing a Votto/Bruce and a Cueto/Wood to get him. That is a high price for a guy who COULD get better but doesn't have a high ceiling. I could see making the deal if the Reds were positioned to win but they clearly are not.

flyer85
01-02-2007, 02:40 PM
Apparently more than Milledge. But it's all speculation.... although the Mets have to be desperate at this point.

Glavine, OHernandez, Maine, OPerez and ????

Jaycint
01-02-2007, 02:40 PM
As long as the asking price doesn't include Dunn, EE or Homer I think I would pull the trigger. If the guy could approach Harang-type numbers, as M2 compared him to, he would fill a gaping hole in this rotation.

I don't think you can trade Dunn or EE for him as they are about the last vestiges of offense we have around here.

I don't think you can trade Bailey because assuming he reaches his potential he is the kind of pitcher the Reds could never hope to attain on the open market. So since we already have him in the system and at a cheap pricetag for a while we almost have to keep him and hope he pans out.

flyer85
01-02-2007, 02:46 PM
As long as the asking price doesn't include Dunn, EE or Homer I think I would pull the trigger. If the guy could approach Harang-type numbers, as M2 compared him to, he would fill a gaping hole in this rotation.
it would be a steep price for a team that would still likely struggle to get to .500. I am only in favor of trading top prospects if you feel like the trade either a)makes you an instant contender or b)makes you better tomorrow and likely down the road as well.

Johnny Footstool
01-02-2007, 02:51 PM
Big frame, good movement on his pitches, 8.33 minor league K/9. Overall his minor league numbers were a tick better than Aaron Harang's, who also rose through the A's system. It took Harang roughly 300 innings to settle into the majors. Blanton's pitched 400 IP to date and he just turned 26 (Harang was 27 when he bust through in 2005), which should put him in just about the right spot to take a decisive step forward.

Except Harang has always been able to strike out major league hitters at a higher rate than Blanton. Harang's worst K/9 (4.95 in 2003, by far his lowest total) is on par with Blanton's 4.96 last season.

Blanton needs to make a decisive step forward to be a decent major league pitcher. And if the asking price is Milledge, I'd say it's too big of a gamble.

M2
01-02-2007, 02:52 PM
I read somewhere the A's wanted Milledge and another prospect(and the Mets don't have many, especially since Humber was shut down in the AFL).

I would see it as the Reds dealing a Votto/Bruce and a Cueto/Wood to get him. That is a high price for a guy who COULD get better but doesn't have a high ceiling. I could see making the deal if the Reds were positioned to win but they clearly are not.

I'd say no to Bruce, but Votto and Cueto/Wood would do the trick for me. Blanton should be a good pitcher in the majors for the next four years. Votto and that arm may never be good MLB players (and even if they do reach that level in the future, Blanton's got the right here, right now factor going for him).

M2
01-02-2007, 03:19 PM
Except Harang has always been able to strike out major league hitters at a higher rate than Blanton. Harang's worst K/9 (4.95 in 2003, by far his lowest total) is on par with Blanton's 4.96 last season.

So he always had a higher K rate except for that time that he didn't. Blanton fanned guys all the way up to the majors and there's no doubt in my mind he'll set up something in the mid-6.00s as the basement for his K/9 in the coming years. He has the talent. He has the frame. Now he has the experience. It's the recipe for a guy who's going to deliver better results.

RedsManRick
01-02-2007, 03:36 PM
To me, Blanton's performance in minors suggests not that he has the "stuff" to strike out guys at the major league level, but that he was so ahead of A ball hitters as a 22 year old that he couldn't help but strike out a ton of guys. A sharp decline to a still respectable level in AAA and further decline in the majors to a sub-par 5.00 K/9 makes me think that his pitches which struck AAA hitters out don't strike out major leaguers. He's walking more and striking out less.

Looks to me like more of the balls he puts in the zone are turning in to hits instead of strikeouts and balls guys chased in the minors are landing as balls in the majors. As he tries to avoid hits he's walking more guys. Over his last 400 IP he has established a K/9 rate of 5.00. Why are you convinced it's going to rebound to the mid 6s? I understand his hit rate was high largely due to a spike in BABIP, but that says nothing about his K rates.

As flukishly high as his 2006 BABIP was, his 2005 BABIP was flukishly low. If he settles in between those points, you're looking at a guy with medium ground ball tendencies with average control and below average strikeout rates. That plays just fine and I'd happily put Blanton at #3 on our staff right now, but I think he's going to end up as a Jeff Suppan like, good but clearly not great type of starter. I'll grant you the point about where he stands in his development curve, and that it's possible for him to take a step forward. (the fantasy guys at mlb.com use a 500 IP point as the place where pitchers usually either take that step forward or don't) I just don't see it as any type of guarantee.

As for Harang's low K rate in 2003, that was over his 75th through 150th IP in his major league career. Blanton's K rate is across his first 400 IP. Slight differences in the sample size there.

Johnny Footstool
01-02-2007, 03:50 PM
So he always had a higher K rate except for that time that he didn't.
Yeah, he had a higher rate every season except for that awful, career-low exception in which his was as bad as Blanton's. If you want to nitpick about 0.01 K/9, I'll concede that point.

The rest of Harang's K/9 rates blow Blanton away.


Blanton fanned guys all the way up to the majors and there's no doubt in my mind he'll set up something in the mid-6.00s as the basement for his K/9 in the coming years. He has the talent. He has the frame. Now he has the experience. It's the recipe for a guy who's going to deliver better results.

He has to, because starting pitchers who barely strike out 100 batters in a full season generally end up on the stinkpile.

Falls City Beer
01-02-2007, 03:54 PM
He has to, because starting pitchers who barely strike out 100 batters in a full season are not long for the majors.

Especially when they're surrendering monster hit totals, and too many walks relative to his K rate. I might give him a pass if he were a total control freak, but he's really not. He doesn't mind walking a batter or two. That would be a disaster with the Reds outfield and HR tendencies.

Surrendering as many hits as Blanton did last year can only be attributed so much to "bad luck." A good deal of the responsibility at some point stems from being "very hittable."

M2
01-02-2007, 04:03 PM
RMR, the one mistake you're making, IMO, is that you're assuming that what you've seen from Blanton in the majors is what you'll get when we know that young pitchers consistently make strides after 300-400 IP.

Harang did it. Arroyo did it. I only wish the Reds had plucked a guy like John Lackey before he did the same. Not all of them do it, but Blanton has a good frame, good control, he keeps the ball down and he doesn't throw lollipops. If the Reds aren't going to jump on guys like this in that tweener period between where they've taken their lumps and before they establish themselves then the team might as well book an endless ticket for for sub-.500.

Blanton's one of the best 2007 breakout candidates you're likely to find.

Falls City Beer
01-02-2007, 04:05 PM
Blanton's one of the best 2007 breakout candidates you're likely to find.

I'll gladly take that bet.

Spitball
01-02-2007, 04:14 PM
FWIW
Jennings years 1&2
(IP) 366.2 (H) 413 (BB) 158 (SO) 246

Blanton Years 1&2
(IP) 395.2 (H) 419 (BB) 125 (SO) 213

In their first two years, Jennings was certainly giving up more hits per inning as well as walking more per nine innings. Jennings was striking out more per nine.

RedsManRick
01-02-2007, 04:15 PM
RMR, the one mistake you're making, IMO, is that you're assuming that what you've seen from Blanton in the majors is what you'll get when we know that young pitchers consistently make strides after 300-400 IP.

Harang did it. Arroyo did it. I only wish the Reds had plucked a guy like John Lackey before he did the same. Not all of them do it, but Blanton has a good frame, good control, he keeps the ball down and he doesn't throw lollipops. If the Reds aren't going to jump on guys like this in that tweener period between where they've taken their lumps and before they establish themselves then the team might as well book an endless ticket for for sub-.500.

Blanton's one of the best 2007 breakout candidates you're likely to find.

I've bolded the word I have a problem with. I agree that there are pitchers who make strides after there first 400 IP. I'm not sure what percentage of pitchers make those strides and not convinced that we should assume a pitcher is likely to get better after his first 400 IP. The guys who don't make those strides often aren't around much longer than their next 200 IP. Dave Williams is in that boat right now. Could Blanton up those K rates? Sure, it's possible. Is it likely? I haven't seen evidence either way.

Outside of an improvement, I think Blanton has shown himself to be a solid major league pitcher -- again, in the Suppan mold. A mid-rotation guy who will probably fluctuate performance wise with a few near all-star years and a few yackers.

As for Bronson, I'm not so sure his improvement in 2006 wasn't due more to moving from the AL East to the NL Central as anything else. Bronson's 2005 K rate looks like the outlier in his career, not 2006. He may not have "improved" so much as he's moved to a more becoming context. Harang improved over the course of his first 500 IP, suggesting he was actually becoming a more effective pitcher. Could Blanton improve as a pitcher? Yes. Could he improve through a friendlier context? Yes. Is he likely? I don't know -- give me some more evidence.

M2
01-02-2007, 04:15 PM
Yeah, he had a higher rate every season except for that awful, career-low exception in which his was as bad as Blanton's. If you want to nitpick about 0.01 K/9, I'll concede that point.

The rest of Harang's K/9 rates blow Blanton away.

...

He has to, because starting pitchers who barely strike out 100 batters in a full season generally end up on the stinkpile.

Here's where I'll note we had this discussion this spring about another pitcher who supposedly wasn't going to fan anyone. Blanton's got the stuff and control to K more and a consistent minor league track record of having done it. He's reaching an ideal experience/maturation point to take a step forward. Pretty much every pitcher struggles his first two seasons. You trying to turn those numbers into a toe tag when Blanton's got pretty much every earmark of a pitcher should pick up that K rate. All things considered, he's a pretty safe projection (with the caveat that no pitcher is ever a sure thing).

M2
01-02-2007, 04:42 PM
I've bolded the word I have a problem with. I agree that there are pitchers who make strides after there first 400 IP. I'm not sure what percentage of pitchers make those strides and not convinced that we should assume a pitcher is likely to get better after his first 400 IP. The guys who don't make those strides often aren't around much longer than their next 200 IP. Dave Williams is in that boat right now. Could Blanton up those K rates? Sure, it's possible. Is it likely? I haven't seen evidence either way.

Williams works at 85 MPH, has control issues and leaves way too many pitches up in the strikezone. Blanton works around 90, has good control and keeps the ball down. Some profiling is necessary.

I think you could be right about Blanton potentially settling into that league average role. My guess is he'll be a bit better than guys like Suppan or Jon Garland. He's got the velocity, control, movement, frame and minor league track record that should push him up into the 6.00s for K/9 and probably the 7.00s in some seasons.

Falls City Beer
01-02-2007, 04:52 PM
Here's where I'll note we had this discussion this spring about another pitcher who supposedly wasn't going to fan anyone. Blanton's got the stuff and control to K more and a consistent minor league track record of having done it. He's reaching an ideal experience/maturation point to take a step forward. Pretty much every pitcher struggles his first two seasons. You trying to turn those numbers into a toe tag when Blanton's got pretty much every earmark of a pitcher should pick up that K rate. All things considered, he's a pretty safe projection (with the caveat that no pitcher is ever a sure thing).

Blanton has about an 1/8th of Arroyo's movement. I'm a weirdo, though. I saw Arroyo being a boon, but I don't in any way see the Arroyo/Blanton comparisons.

Johnny Footstool
01-02-2007, 04:52 PM
Here's where I'll note we had this discussion this spring about another pitcher who supposedly wasn't going to fan anyone. Blanton's got the stuff and control to K more and a consistent minor league track record of having done it. He's reaching an ideal experience/maturation point to take a step forward. Pretty much every pitcher struggles his first two seasons. You trying to turn those numbers into a toe tag when Blanton's got pretty much every earmark of a pitcher should pick up that K rate. All things considered, he's a pretty safe projection (with the caveat that no pitcher is ever a sure thing).

I believe what I said last spring about Arroyo -- that he needs his K/9 to be much higher than it was in 2005 in order to be effective -- was accurate. I was wrong in speculating that he couldn't raise it to that level, but I'm happy to be wrong about that.

But that's a whole different basket of eggs. Arroyo had proven he could strike out MLB hitters at a good rate prior to 2005. All Blanton has proven to date is that he gives up a lot of contact to MLB hitters.

If what you say about his stuff and control are true, then yes, it's possible he could have a breakout year. But the odds of him doing that are pretty long -- not worth the steep asking price, IMO.

If you can get him for Freel + a B-prospect, do it. Otherwise, pass the dice to the next shooter.

M2
01-02-2007, 04:57 PM
Blanton has about an 1/8th of Arroyo's movement. I'm a weirdo, though. I saw Arroyo being a boon, but I don't in any way see the Arroyo/Blanton comparisons.

Arroyo had move movement, sick movement. Blanton's got a Harangish heater. I'm not saying they're peas from the same pod. I'm saying that you can't necessarily project a guy based on his numbers at the front of his major league learning curve.

Falls City Beer
01-02-2007, 05:00 PM
Arroyo had move movement, sick movement. Blanton's got a Harangish heater. I'm not saying they're peas from the same pod. I'm saying that you can't necessarily project a guy based on his numbers at the front of his major league learning curve.

Whoa, Harang can fairly routinely chuck it up there at 92 with nice, hard downward bite. The Blanton I've seen looks like a big, fat Rick Reed: 88 MPH tops and here-it-is-hit-it.

Falls City Beer
01-02-2007, 05:09 PM
FWIW
Jennings years 1&2
(IP) 366.2 (H) 413 (BB) 158 (SO) 246

Blanton Years 1&2
(IP) 395.2 (H) 419 (BB) 125 (SO) 213

In their first two years, Jennings was certainly giving up more hits per inning as well as walking more per nine innings. Jennings was striking out more per nine.

Apples to oranges comparison vis. parks.

M2
01-02-2007, 05:13 PM
Whoa, Harang can fairly routinely chuck it up there at 92 with nice, hard downward bite. The Blanton I've seen looks like a big, fat Rick Reed: 88 MPH tops and here-it-is-hit-it.

I've seen him working at 90, which is where Harang was when the Reds got him (when he was viewed as a stuff-challenged big guy). Blanton's got the downward bite too. I'm not saying he's going to be as good as Harang, but he's got some similarities in terms of stuff.

Spitball
01-02-2007, 07:07 PM
The Blanton I've seen looks like a big, fat Rick Reed: 88 MPH tops and here-it-is-hit-it.

I'd gladly take the in-his-prime Rick Reed numbers in the three spot in the rotation. BTW, Jennings is a whole lot fatter than Blanton while also in the 88-90 mph range.

RedsManRick
01-02-2007, 07:39 PM
I'd gladly take the in-his-prime Rick Reed numbers in the three spot in the rotation. BTW, Jennings is a whole lot fatter than Blanton while also in the 88-90 mph range.

Yup, it's all about expectations. As we've discussed elsewhere, you can do a lot worse than 200 IP of 4.00 ERA ball. There's a whole lot of room between all-star or ace and scrub. While it might not fit preconceived notions, that sort of performance is quite valuable. That said, I agree with the argument that Blanton has shown himself fairly hittable. I wouldn't count on him on improving greatly -- and thusly wouldn't value him at anything more than he already is. However, what he is is a 26 year old #3/4 starter only 2 years in to his arb clock. Yes please.

Falls City Beer
01-02-2007, 07:46 PM
http://www.endscore.com/blogimages/joe_blanton_deals.jpg

This image says it all.

And I'm talking about the 26 year old Rick Reed in my comparison, not the effective 30 year old.

TheBigLebowski
01-02-2007, 07:50 PM
The funny thing is that we're engaged in such a serious, in-depth discussion about a guy that probably has no chance of ending up here. I'd be surprised if Wayne has even sent out feelers on the guy once he heard they were asking for Milledge+ in return.

Spitball
01-02-2007, 08:57 PM
This image says it all.


I don't have a picture of Jennings, but I promise you, he looks like he swallowed Joe Blanton.

RedsManRick
01-02-2007, 09:59 PM
I don't have a picture of Jennings, but I promise you, he looks like he swallowed Joe Blanton.
:KoolAid: :KoolAid:
http://mas.scripps.com/DRMN/2006/08/15/081506jennings_o.jpg
:KoolAid: :KoolAid:

Falls City Beer
01-02-2007, 10:01 PM
I don't see that much of a difference.

Spitball
01-02-2007, 11:29 PM
I don't see that much of a difference.

One (Blanton) is about 220, and one (Jennings) is about 245. That is a difference. Blanton is stocky. Jennings is a soft bodied bowling pin about to be a free agent.

Jpup
01-03-2007, 03:04 AM
Blanton's got a Harangish heater.

wow, not even close. Harang has much, much better stuff than Blanton. Go back and watch the guy. The offseason package is 14.95 if you don't have it.

The guy has never shown an ability to strikeout much of anyone, he walks quit a few, and he lets up a lot of hits. If Beane is truly dangling him, there is a reason for it.

M2
01-03-2007, 09:32 AM
wow, not even close. Harang has much, much better stuff than Blanton. Go back and watch the guy. The offseason package is 14.95 if you don't have it.

The guy has never shown an ability to strikeout much of anyone, he walks quit a few, and he lets up a lot of hits. If Beane is truly dangling him, there is a reason for it.

I think you forget what Harang was throwing when he first came to Cincinnati. Harang's stuff got better when he finally matured into his body (and when he got serious about his conditioning, something that Blanton could learn from).

Blanton has shown an ability to strike people out. He did all through the minors and in college.

I doubt that Beane is dangling Blanton. Other teams probably inquire and he asks for the moon, figuring anything less and he's not interested.

Puffy
01-03-2007, 10:03 AM
RMR, the one mistake you're making, IMO, is that you're assuming that what you've seen from Blanton in the majors is what you'll get when we know that young pitchers consistently make strides after 300-400 IP.

Harang did it. Arroyo did it. I only wish the Reds had plucked a guy like John Lackey before he did the same. Not all of them do it, but Blanton has a good frame, good control, he keeps the ball down and he doesn't throw lollipops. If the Reds aren't going to jump on guys like this in that tweener period between where they've taken their lumps and before they establish themselves then the team might as well book an endless ticket for for sub-.500.

Blanton's one of the best 2007 breakout candidates you're likely to find.

I'm with M2 - Blanton is exactly the type of pitcher the Reds need to go after. Sure they could go down in a blaze of flames, but smaller market teams need to take these types of chances. Blanton is a good bet to breakout.

I'd gladly trade Votto and Cueto for him - and then just as quickly move Adam Dunn to 1B and say, "Look Big Man this is where we want you for the next 6 years. He is your contract extension"

Falls City Beer
01-03-2007, 11:56 AM
I'm with M2 - Blanton is exactly the type of pitcher the Reds need to go after. Sure they could go down in a blaze of flames, but smaller market teams need to take these types of chances. Blanton is a good bet to breakout.

I'd gladly trade Votto and Cueto for him - and then just as quickly move Adam Dunn to 1B and say, "Look Big Man this is where we want you for the next 6 years. He is your contract extension"

I don't mind taking a flyer on a guy like Blanton, but 1) Beane's going to ask for the moon and 2) the Reds don't have, nor should they deal if they had, the moon for Blanton.

membengal
01-03-2007, 12:03 PM
Another rock and hard place situation. I like Blanton, think he will mature into a very good pitcher, and would be a nice acquisition. But not at the price that Beane is apparently seeking.

Spitball
01-03-2007, 02:08 PM
I'm with M2 - Blanton is exactly the type of pitcher the Reds need to go after. Sure they could go down in a blaze of flames, but smaller market teams need to take these types of chances. Blanton is a good bet to breakout.


Exactly. Outside of developing more Homer Baileys, I can't see a better way for the Reds to improve their rotation in this day and age.

Free agency is virtually a blocked roadway to improvement. When Gil Meche, Ted Lilly, and Jason Marquis quality pitchers get huge three and four year contracts, it is time to find other avenues. Besides, the ball park and recent team history work against signings.

Trading for a "good bet to breakout" is probably the only way to go. Jason Jennings name has been debated here for a month or two, but now is not the time to trade for a Jennings. Jennings is coming off his best season and is in his walk year. The time to trade for a pitcher is before he has his best season. (Also, if you trade for a pitcher in his walk year, don't trade top pitching prospects.)

Blanton probably fits the mold, but he may not truly be available, as many have pointed out, at a reasonable price. But what is a reasonable price in this day and age for middle of the rotation types? Look at Gil Meche, Lilly, and Marquis signings.

As Puffy said, a smart team will take a chance on a Blanton type pitcher. D'backs and Astros are taking their chances with one year rental trades for Doug Davis and Jennings since resigning them is far from certain and draft picks are a slow and difficult way to improve pitching.

The ways to make positive and affordable impact on the pitching staff have obviously evolved into a very difficult task. Development of prospects is very slow, so, if an impact is going to be made this off season, taking chances on an affordable, contolled for a few year type like Blanton is essential, IMO.

Spitball
01-03-2007, 02:17 PM
Another rock and hard place situation. I like Blanton, think he will mature into a very good pitcher, and would be a nice acquisition. But not at the price that Beane is apparently seeking.

Look at the desperation signings and trades for number three/four starters. What price is too much? Outfielders and every other position players are so much easier to develop and cheaper to sign, so what price is too steep? I believe it will be necessary to overpay, players in trade and dollars in signings, for all kinds of pitching. A Blanton would probably cost a lot, but pitching is golden in today's market.

membengal
01-03-2007, 02:31 PM
Look at the desperation signings and trades for number three/four starters. What price is too much? Outfielders and every other position players are so much easier to develop and cheaper to sign, so what price is too steep? I believe it will be necessary to overpay, players in trade and dollars in signings, for all kinds of pitching. A Blanton would probably cost a lot, but pitching is golden in today's market.

Bailey is too much, since he may be ready to help the team this year. Bruce? Bruce and Cueto? Perhaps that...

Spitball
01-03-2007, 04:23 PM
Bailey is too much, since he may be ready to help the team this year. Bruce? Bruce and Cueto? Perhaps that...

I agree, Bailey is too much, and any other top pitching prospects like Cueto or Wood need to be invested only in major league pitchers who will be around for more than one or two years. I would consider trading any position player or prospect to improve the pitching. It is so difficult to develop and acquire decent/good pitching.

TRF
01-03-2007, 05:34 PM
You want to know who Blanton reminds me of? Jimmy Haynes.

Good minor league K/9 numbers, declining numbers after reaching the major leagues.

Blanton was a tick better than Haynes in his third year, a tick worse in his 1st year. The comparison to Arroyo is off as 2006 was Arroyo's third full year as a starter. He now has a three year track record, with two of those years being good, 1 outstanding in fact, and 1 poor year. And that poor year was directly related to his low K/9. Other than that he was probably hit lucky too.

Blanton on the other hand his in a two year DECLINE. The AL has certainly adjusted to him. Now, can he adjust to the league? Or does he go all Jimmy Haynes?

Falls City Beer
01-03-2007, 05:46 PM
You want to know who Blanton reminds me of? Jimmy Haynes.


Great comp.

Superb comp. Even the tubbiness fits.

Spitball
01-03-2007, 06:11 PM
Great comp.

Superb comp. Even the tubbiness fits.

Really? Haynes, basically a two pitch pitcher, was handicapped by absolutely terrible control. He never walked fewer than 78 batter as a starter. In his prime, he had much better stuff than Blanton, but he walked too many and made too many mistakes over the middle of the plate.

How is that like Blanton? I'd love to see your in depth analysis.

I still think he equates best with Suppan in style and potential.

RedsManRick
01-03-2007, 06:20 PM
Baseball Reference has his top comp through age 25 as Jeff D'Amico. Just throwing that out there.

mth123
01-03-2007, 07:57 PM
You want to know who Blanton reminds me of? Jimmy Haynes.

Good minor league K/9 numbers, declining numbers after reaching the major leagues.

Blanton was a tick better than Haynes in his third year, a tick worse in his 1st year. The comparison to Arroyo is off as 2006 was Arroyo's third full year as a starter. He now has a three year track record, with two of those years being good, 1 outstanding in fact, and 1 poor year. And that poor year was directly related to his low K/9. Other than that he was probably hit lucky too.

Blanton on the other hand his in a two year DECLINE. The AL has certainly adjusted to him. Now, can he adjust to the league? Or does he go all Jimmy Haynes?

Not sure I understand this at all. Blanton pitched 8 innings in 2004. His real first year was 2005 and was very good. Better than I would really ever expect again. 2006 was his sophmore slump year. It happens all the time and was compounded by a very unlucky BABIP. How is that a 2 year decline? The original comment about Arroyo was that prior to 2006 he had a good year 2004 and a bad year 2005. Those years look a lot like Blanton's 2005 and 2006 to me.

If he settles in the middle of the two at an ERA of about 4.25, that is a pretty good #3 starter. I'd take him.

After all that, I'll agree with those who say the A's want too much. I wouldn't trade Bailey, Bruce or Votto and I would have to think real hard about Cueto. I would trade Wood and Freel for him, but I think the A's would want more and Freel doesn't seem like the A's type of player IMO.

Falls City Beer
01-03-2007, 09:24 PM
Really? Haynes, basically a two pitch pitcher, was handicapped by absolutely terrible control. He never walked fewer than 78 batter as a starter. In his prime, he had much better stuff than Blanton, but he walked too many and made too many mistakes over the middle of the plate.

How is that like Blanton? I'd love to see your in depth analysis.

I still think he equates best with Suppan in style and potential.

Suppan's not a bad comp, either. But then Haynes is not unlike Suppan.

Both Blanton and Haynes are big, out-of-shape guys who don't succeed wonderfully at striking people out for all their supposed "good stuff"-- in other words, they're sheep in wolves' clothing.

And apparently, if a guy surrenders 50 more hits than innings pitched, I'd say he, too, is "leaving too many mistakes over the plate."

I'm telling you: you should be alarmed at that hit total; not chalk it up to "bad luck."

TRF
01-04-2007, 09:28 AM
Not sure I understand this at all. Blanton pitched 8 innings in 2004. His real first year was 2005 and was very good. Better than I would really ever expect again. 2006 was his sophmore slump year. It happens all the time and was compounded by a very unlucky BABIP. How is that a 2 year decline? The original comment about Arroyo was that prior to 2006 he had a good year 2004 and a bad year 2005. Those years look a lot like Blanton's 2005 and 2006 to me.

If he settles in the middle of the two at an ERA of about 4.25, that is a pretty good #3 starter. I'd take him.

After all that, I'll agree with those who say the A's want too much. I wouldn't trade Bailey, Bruce or Votto and I would have to think real hard about Cueto. I would trade Wood and Freel for him, but I think the A's would want more and Freel doesn't seem like the A's type of player IMO.

I noticed the IP for 2004 later. my mistake on that.

But honestly, Blanton is no better than Eric Milton. In fact he might have been worse last year. All he really has on his side is being young. In fact, He wasn't better than EZ, just a little healthier.

RedsManRick
01-04-2007, 12:45 PM
Eric Milton is a fine pitcher to have in your rotation as your #4 or #5 starter for a few million bucks. The problem with Eric Milton is when you want him to be your #2 or #3 starer and are willing to pay him accordingly.

I agree with the basic premise of acquiring pre-breakout guys. However, you can't do that at the expense of a cheaper, higher ceiling ceiling guy -- that defeats the purpose. Who do you trade to get that guy? You trade a minor league position player who is blocked at the major league level or the guy who is blocking him. You trade a few veteran relievers who you can replace from within (or the guys who are blocked and not getting a chance). Basically, you trade away value that you aren't able to realize because of the organization of talent in the organization. You make your talent organization more efficient.

Furthermore, I think we have some basic disagreements about the ceiling of Joe Blanton. That Beane is willing to deal says to me that he thinks this is the time to capitalize on his value. His talent(expected production) to salary ratio will only go downhill from here as he moves up the arb chain, so Beane feels he can get a better value out of "new" prospects. It's basically the case I'm making for moving Arroyo. Could Blanton help the A's win now? Yup. But it's a smart move for the A's to capitalize on Blanton's current value (particularly if they feel he's NOT going to take a leap -- though Beane has obviously been wrong about that before in Harang) and increase the overall talent level of the organization without jeopardizing the short term goals of the team.

The problem, of course, is that WK already took our greatest asset in this regard (depth leading to potential unrealizable talent), Wily Mo, and flipped him for Arroyo. He then took talent which could NOT replace, AK & Lopez, and flipped them for talent which we already could replicate, creating a new talent distribution inefficiency - mediocre bullpen arms. Now, outside of a trade of bullpen arms, any trade for a solid talent is going to cost us actual, realizable talent elsewhere. It becomes a lateral move.

Trading Bailey for Blanton is like selling a lottery ticket with a 10% of being worth $1,000 (ace starter), a 25% chance of $100 (Harang like solid), a 50% chance of $10 (useful back-end of the rotation), and a 15% chance of being valueless (bust) for a $50 dollar bill (#3/4 starter). Yes, it's incredibly rough estimates and we can quibble about the values and percentages, but you're trading a $130 average value guy for a $50 guy. That only makes sense if that guaranteed 50 bucks makes a huge difference in your immediate future outcome.

Spitball
01-04-2007, 02:49 PM
Trading Bailey for Blanton is like selling ...

I don't think anyone suggested trading Bailey for Blanton.

RedsManRick
01-04-2007, 02:58 PM
I don't think anyone suggested trading Bailey for Blanton.

Whoops -- I got mixed up with comments about Jennings from somebody earlier evidently. Still you suggested Wood, Deno, and Coffey. We can do the math on that one too. However, I agree that one of Deno and Freel are probably our most valuable expendable piece.

I don't think Blanton is the guy I'd go after, but I would be fine with a Wood, Freel, non-Coffey/Bray reliever for a legitimate major league SP. He's certainly the type however -- proven that he can pitch, but still has upside and not free market priced.

Falls City Beer
01-04-2007, 03:25 PM
I don't think anyone suggested trading Bailey for Blanton.

No, but some suggested trading Bruce for Blanton, which is even worse.