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The Tally Ho

Monday, February 27, 2006

Baseball News

As you know, I am a fan of the AL East baseball. I like all baseball - other than the West Coast teams. Anyway, this was in the Washington Post today.
There are far more teams looking for starting pitching help this time of year than teams with extra starters to deal, but the Nationals feel there are potential trade partners -- perhaps most notably the Boston Red Sox, who are prepared to give top prospect Jonathan Papelbon the fifth starter's job, making another starter such as Matt Clement and/or Bronson Arroyo expendable.

However, Clement, who is owed $9.5 million in both 2006 and 2007, may be too expensive for the Nationals. Arroyo, meantime, signed a three-year, $11.25 million contract with the Red Sox in January. Complicating the Red Sox' picture is the fact the team reportedly promised veteran lefty David Wells that they would try to trade him to a West Coast team by the end of the spring.

According to a team source, the Nationals have already approached the Red Sox about a trade involving second baseman Alfonso Soriano, whom the Nationals acquired in a December trade and are trying to persuade to accept a move to left field, but the Red Sox showed very little interest.

I don't buy it for a second. First, Washington made a very bad trade this off season by trading for Alfonso Soriano. Firstly, his batting average has dropped four straight seasons. Of couse he has good power and is only 30 years old - but secondly, the Nationals already have a second baseman in Jose Vidro. Were they not aware that Soriano had no interest in moving to the outfield? Anyway, my point is - trading Soriano should have been considered when they first acquired him. Thirdly, why would the Red Sox want Soriano at this point? When building a team this off season, I wouldn't be surprised if Boston would have considered it if they traded Manny Ramirez. But now that they have Mark Loretta and his OBP at second with Ortiz and Ramirez behind him - where would Soriano play? Also, why would Boston consider trading a never injured and affordable Bronson Arroyo for a player who would have no position for the Red Sox? It doesn't make sense at all. Terry Francona has said all off season that you can never have too much pitching - seeing Boston's winter moves says it all. The only way I see Matt Clement being moved is if Jon Lester is a big league starter by the end of June. Otherwise, I can't see the Red Sox trading away valuable players. With a healthy Schilling and Beckett (though Francona may pitch Wakefield in between) and Papelbon - Clement may be the fifth man in the rotation. In conclusion, in the mostly post steriod era no way Boston trades away their biggest assets. If they need to trade pitching for offense - it is more likely going to be Clement and Trot Nixon to Philadelphia for Bobby Abreu - that is, if Philadelphia is still trying to trade him and their pitching staff has holes.

4 Comments:

  • I am a Yankee fan who has moved to Washington, thus becoming a Nationals fan (got to boo the President at the first home game).

    The Nationals pick-up of Soriano was the most bone-headed move I've seen in a long time. Not only do I think he is overrated, but also, as you pointed out, 2B is filled. The Nationals need power in the line-up, but this kid is not worth all the crappy attitude and 130 Ks to 12 BBs per year.

    By Blogger Stockton&Tweed, at 4:28 PM  

  • Ah, yes - I know you are a Yankees fan. I think Damon and Dotel were both good moves, and it was smart not to go after Burnett. But I think Farnesworth won't be as dependable as Gordon (why Dotel addition was great) and with Myers being lefty specialist I think instead the Yanks needed a pitcher who is strong against either side of the plate as the pen has been terribly overworked ever since they let Clemens, Pettitt, and Wells leave a few years ago.

    I'm not sure about Bowden. I saw what he did in Cincinnati, and I have never been impressed. Cincy has no pitching, and they don't seem to develop many either. Boston has a bunch of young arms ready for the bigs - why can't Cincy? Its not like they were trading them away for immediate help in the post season? Though, they do have a bunch of good young outfielders. Anyway, Washington's entire off season has been odd like that. The Nats lost some good players to Texas for a player that probably won't see much time in Washington - and I question what he can bring back in a trade. I'm not sure the Mets would even trade for him. They best go the Marlins route and pick up prospects...

    What do you see the East like? I see it as the same old story - Yanks, Sox, Jays, O's, and Rays.

    By Blogger Wells, at 4:53 PM  

  • Wells:

    I think the Sox lost and the Yankees made up ground, but I don't think it actually changes all that much in the AL. I pitty Orioles fans these days - they just can't seem to make the moves they make work. I don't see much change there.

    I was hoping the Nats would have an owner by now, and some real incentive to improve the team. Newness only goes so far. I suspect the NL east will remain about the same as last year, although I expect the Nats to have a more consistent .500 season.

    If you haven't already, you should check out Stockton & Tweed's Church of Baseball.

    By Blogger Stockton&Tweed, at 10:23 PM  

  • I checked it out tonight - I all about it. I have a lot of notes on the AL East this off season. Would check out more of the NL East if I had time though.

    By Blogger Wells, at 12:11 AM  

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