M's Accused of Desperation

And Jay-Z releases some chill tracks

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Jemanji:  Zduriencik looks kind of shrill this winter.  And who could blame him.  If he has decided it's time to stop playing for two years from now, it's okay by me.

Buster Olney, quoted by Grizzly:  Olney says that "industry rivals" view the M's as desperate this winter. That's a little frightening - we saw what happened the last time the M's had a front office in "desperation" mode.  Safe to say those "industry rivals" know a lot more about Jack's mindset and how frantic the club is than we netizens do.

Silentpadna:  Grizzly, I don't think it's safe to say that at all. Industry rivals are known to say things specifically for public consumption. If I'm GM of the Rangers and I sense the M's are about to make any serious in-roads, I might plant a suggestion like that into the rumor mill. That's a big part of the game these days.

Jemanji:  That's part of the game for sure, but I wonder whether savvy GM's aren't looking at Zunino, the Napoli visit, the calls the M's are making to everybody up to and including Randy Johnson, and seriously wondering whether Zduriencik's under the gun.

Zduriencik:  quoted by Baker, trying (um, desperately) to defuse the situation.

“We have some money available, but we’ve also spent some money already,” Zduriencik said. “Some of our arbitration cases are going to take some of that away, the recent signing of (Hisashi) Iwakuma is going to take a little bit away, as well as Oliver Perez. And the other thing that ties into this, in a lot of these sigings that you do, somethimes there are incentives attached. So, you have to budget for the incentives that players could make as well. But just to do a singing to do a singing, I don’t think would be the right thing to do. If it makes sense and it’s what you’re looking for then certainly you have to entertain that and certainly go down every avenue that you can.

The Mariners are obligated to around $2M in potential incentives for 2013.  The Mariners only have five veterans total who are owed anything whatsoever beyond arbitration awards.  Felix can earn $350,000 if he wins EVERYTHING including Cy Young, Gold Glove, and playoff MVP.  Gutierrez can win $50,000 for a Gold Glove.  Ryan can earn $0.75M for 600 plate appearances.  And Ackley's got some incentives.  So yeah, maybe that $2M means that the budget is real cramped, despite what the team president just said about how he wants Josh Hamilton pretty bad.

The line about incentives blows the cover for my man Z.  He's definitely doing damage control here.

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But I do think we’re kind of in a really unique spot here because I think that for the last several years we’ve been trying to put this whole thing together where we’re very young at the big league level, as you guys know. We’re now going to be sittig with — if some of these players don’t make our big league club — we’re going to be sitting with a lot of players on the AAA club a phone call away. And my guess would be several of them, if they don’t make the club out of spring training, we’re going to see another nice group of kids get to the big leagues.

Yeah, we like our kids.  Don't assume we need your player over there in Kansas City or Miami.

Right.  After four years of watching the current kids come up and struggle, Zduriencik's now going to want to re-rack with another set of kids who will come in with 0 AB's and 0 IP's?

Dr. D has nothing against damage control.  He just doesn't expect rival GM's to have a lot of problems seeing through the protests.  They are evidently taken aback by the full-court press that is being applied by a team that does not usually play full court.

Deal with it.  A lot of teams are aggressive in the offseason.  It's weird only in Seattle.

BABVA,

Dr D

Klat Categories: 

Comments

Since all young, able prospects must NOT go at any price. I mean, there are some WEIRD value ideas out there. At this blog, for instance, there are the following quotes by the writer and commenters about a deal between KC and Seattle:

Paxton:  "It’s no doubt a project but he might be a throw in with a later name mentioned as he’s probably a season or two from being MLB ready."

Maurer: " Another throw in candidate..."

Grab bag: "Gets down to how you value prospects relative to established major leaguers. I think Gordon should return at least Hultzen, Ramirez, Walker, and a couple of A-ball lottery picks." 

o.O

I would rather trade a bowl of artichoke dip for Mark Reynolds than trade Hultzen, Walker, E-Ram AND a couple of low minors guys for the right to employ Alex Gordon.  He's not Miguel Cabrera, sheesh. 

If we're trying to win now and we're gonna do it all with young pitching, then Walker is probably the most expendable of the Big Three.  If we can't sign a bat in FA and use some money on another pitcher, then maybe it's Paxton or Hultzen.

But pieces held too long lose value, especially pitchers.  Jack has to maximize the value of the young kids to us while actually WINNING SOMETHING.  Anything, really, but preferrably bringing us at least a Wild Card chase.  And I'm sure he's under pressure/orders to do just that.

Throwing all the kids overboard a la Bavasi is not likely to be his style, but you never know.

I just hope. ;-)  Chasing a pennant with the most talented kids in your arsenal is still pursuit (see: Oakland 2012).  Praying for good years with Beavan, Cust, Olivo, etc... that's not pursuit.

If we deploy Paxton, Hultzen, E-Ram, The Pen O' Death, Zunino, Montero, Franklin, etc?  I'll consider that a chase engaged, regardless of their struggles. If we trade some of them for a Gordon type and go with Napoli over/alongside Montero? Also pursuit.

But it'll be hard to convince me we're truly chasing anything meaningful if the best and brightest talents remain on the farm, and we don't have bright talents blocking their major league path.  THAT's what I'm waiting to find out from Zduriencik.

~G

 

 

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They don't care how much they lose, as long as they don't get humiliated by, heaven forbid, somebody bluffing them with a bad hand.

There are Seattleites who don't care how lousy their analysis is as long as, heaven forbid, nobody ever calls them a homer.

Paxton as a throw-in?  Without the slightest rancor, that is truly a remark that rules you outside the category of serious analyst.  That's like me commenting on hockey.

..........

The article you quote seems to come out of KC, so I guess it's a little more excusable to call a top-20 prospect a throw-in.  But I've seen some stuff on Seattle blogs that wasn't a lot better.

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We've got young, incredibly talented players at the front of the line. You can't wait for them to look like Willie Mays or Bob Gibson 2 or 3 years running at AAA. You have to roll them out onto Safeco and say, "Go get 'em kid!" Some will struggle, but they will figure it out. If they don't, then you know what you have.

I'm a bit frustrated by the common view that what we have is a bunch of young trade fodder. Getting three years of Gordon for 3 first class arms is an example of that.

"Go get 'em, kid," is indeed chasing a pennant for real. This one or the next one..

I think Z has shown a bit of desperateness, if all the rumors are true. The coomment above is the first one I've seen where he seems to buy in on going with youth, to some degree. Good for him, finally.

If we make a trade, offer up Walker (or somebody Walker-esque) and a young IF and get a bat. If we don't, then let's play the kids, Liddi included. Get Hultzen and Franklin in the rotation soon, Zunino up quick, get Romero to play LF if he's 3B blocked by Seager, get Franklin on the field....and play ball.

We have an incredible stockpile of blue chip prospects. They ain't all trade fodder. Use 'em.

moe

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I hope that Jack isn't under the LincStrong pressure to do something for the sake of doing something. He's saying the right words but his actions will be telling. With the winter meetings on the near horizon, it won't be long until we know how deperate the org really is. The desperation thing could just be agents trying to play up the M's interest in their clients.

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Sounds like Z is already trying to soften the blow of another bargain-bin offseason. Bummer. However, I would think that he may be relieved not to have to sign off on a Hamilton/Swisher/Grienke add with which he is much less than comfortable.

Trades are the area in which Z is most widely regarded to excel. Trades, typically, don't cost very much cash compared to signing FA and I would expect that, if Z really is feeling the heat to improve the club, he would devote the bulk of his energies there.

It sounds like Z is having to accommodate the ownership's wish to emulate the Rays, as much as possible. Sadly, a Felix extension and a trade for a corner OF prospect is all I expect this offseason.

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bsf's picture

bsf

... and a pitcher would be nice. The pitcher doesn't even need to be the top of the market . A two-year stopgap will be sufficient to make us better in the short term. The long term will be covered by the farm. Danny Haren comes to mind. Yes, please hit a grounder to the best SS in the game.

One good hitter is important. And I think Z knows that. Better FA than trade though, in my opinion. There's nobody worth risking the farm for currently available. And next year most of the kids will have even more trade value, because at least Hultzen and Little Nicky will have seen the light of the show, and everyone else is one year closer.

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Gordon GrossHarper is never gonna be available while under club control. Maybe the last 3 months of it, I guess. Bowden mentions us in the Upton trade market again, throws Marte's name in the mix despite the fact that the Braves have essentially his exact twin in Peraza as one of their best prospects. It's pretty easy to see how Bowden got fired - or he's just trolling for views... a lot. Wouldn't mind sending them Gabe Guerrero and some stuff though. We're trying to keep Taijuan, Pax and DJ & still make trades. Not easy. Keep Kiv too! To that end, Smith works for me, but no I won't take Maybin too.6 min 4 sec ago
SABR MattAlthoguh...it looks like Smith is getting progressively more and more selective at the plate, resulting in better and better numbers against hard stuff (his value on fastballs is going up as he begins stalking fastballs, his O-sw and z-sw are both dropping rapidly and his contact rate is stable). Looks like a topspin hitter from the looks of his great disappearing popups. Maybe he's a better fit than I thought.22 min 29 sec ago
SABR MattSmith is unlikely to translate well to Safeco. Doesn't hit the ball in the air enough to be a potent enough platoon guy and we'd have to be able to land a RH pair for him that is actually willing to platoon. The RH bats that are available in FA all want to start...except for Gomes who is terrible. Smith isn't going to help us. We need a full time starter or a guy who can not die a horrible death every time there's a lefty pitching...preferably a guy who gets on base and actually hits the ball hard.27 min 40 sec ago
moethedogNo problem with Smith here, Gordon. He's not an Ethier-quality vR bat, but he's not coming off of a disaster year, either. Oh...he's significantly cheaper, btw. But he doesn't go play CF, which means the RHB platoon-guy we get to marry him to must play CF, as well. Can you say Souza? You might get Souza with Ackley. OK, add a MiLB OF bat, too. Then maybe you are there. Such a deal means that Miller becomes a COF, most likely. Souza plays 1B, too. We still don't have a 2nd one of those, unless it's Montero or Romero. We're we to sign Rasmus instead of Smith you could give Romero the vL AB's early and see what he's got. And I'm not quite sure what Bryce Harper's new contract means: is he signed for just two years or two year and then his arb cycle? I don't know. But I would sure send the Nats Walker for Harper.39 min 35 sec ago
Gordon GrossFrom MLBTR: "The Nationals recently offered the Mariners both Jordan Zimmermann and Ian Desmond in exchange for right-hander Taijuan Walker and shortstop Brad Miller, according to Rosenthal. However, the Mariners balked at giving up six years of Walker and five of Miller for just one year of Zimmermann and Desmond at a combined total of $27.5MM." Yeah, I can see that being a problem for us. They also say we're in on Seth Smith, which from a corner platoon POV is fine. I've said before that's an As sort of move.3 hours 18 min ago
Gordon GrossOr... y'know, Montero... *bitterbeerface* Boy do I hope his 8th chance is the one he makes good on, I guess. Of course, he can't back up at C except in emergencies any more. Can't play the OF (LoMo can probably run faster backwards than Montero can forwards, and LoMo is nobody I want manning a lot of OF either). Can't hit righties. But there's always a chance, right? Between Clement and Montero I'm done with terrible catchers who have power as their only calling card. Thank goodness Zunino is good at D.5 hours 57 min ago
Gordon GrossThere are several teams in on Gattis, TR, who would fit that bill. But the Braves don't have a huge incentive to deal him yet. A Gattis / Upton trade gives us things we need, but I dunno that we're willing to offer what they want to make that happen. Our #5 prospect is quite a bit better than some other teams, if you consider Paxton and Walker "prospects." Just because Baseball America considers them out of the prospect category doesn't mean MLB teams do, and we're kicking suitors down that list a bit before they get to "acceptable" trades.7 hours 21 min ago
Tacoma RainIs it time to look at back up catchers who can play RF or 1B??17 hours 20 min ago
moethedogAllen Craig, Matt. He's still there in Boston. He's likely available. There is interest. There are teams that think he's not done. It will likely be Rios, I think, but Crig will hit .300 again for somebody.Right now, however, our most pressing needs are a RF (regardless of handiness) who can play CF, too...and a COF/1B17 hours 33 min ago
SABR MattI bet we did bid 4 years. I feel better now...can't do anything if the other side just doesn't want to play with you...Alex Rios it is.20 hours 8 min ago
DaddyO@moe ... Today, I salute you, sir. On Jan 6th, it's "Hey you!" :)21 hours 8 min ago
moethedogMuch appreciated Daddy. My last Mayoral day is Jan. 5th. After 6 terms I decided it was time to step aside. Hardest decision I've ever made. On Jan. 6th you rank me! :)22 hours 2 min ago
DaddyOMayors take precedence over retired peons like me!23 hours 36 min ago
DaddyOHah! Moe and me cross posted.23 hours 37 min ago
DaddyOhttp://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2014/12/white-sox-to-sign-melky-cabrera.html (see note at 4:24 pm)23 hours 37 min ago
moethedogBTW: Somebody was willing (according to reports) to go 4 years. Us?: 4:24pm: Cabrera rejected a four-year offer from an unknown team because his preference was to play for the White Sox, tweets CBSSports.com’s Jon Heyman.23 hours 37 min ago
DaddyONow per MLBTR an unknown West Coast team did in fact bid four years for M.Cabrera, but he decided he preferred to play for the White Sox. Seems plausible that the mystery WC team was Seattle. That would explain a lot. Perhaps Jack signaled a fourth year was doable only to be signaled back that it just wasn't going to happen. If so, then Jack did do everything he reasonably could.23 hours 38 min ago
moethedogThinking about Souza, I was scouring some Nats' sites and their Harper dissatisfaction was a topic of interest. In all seriousness I began to wonder if we were discussing the less likely Nat: If you could get Bryce Harper and change for Taijuan Walker and change would you do the deal? I don't know what to read into the Harper issue. Is it their version of our Saunders events? I love Souza, but why not make a bid for Bryce Harper. The upside is huge and you hope Cano, Seager and Mac can get him to grow up some. Young stud for young stud would get everybody's attention. Beyond that I will add this: Matt, Seth Smith is way cheap and his career vR numbers are ,277-.358-.481. He's all we hope that Ackley and Saunders would become, vR. He's doesn't hit LHP with a darn, but we could do worse with the bat. Endy for example. Alas, he doesn't play CF. Which makes him a less than likely fit.23 hours 43 min ago
Bat571But trading for a younger, faster guy is a better plan than hoping.1 day 3 min ago
Bat571Hence my Christmas wish for Mr. Jones!1 day 4 min ago