What is your opinion of the A.J. Pierzynski signing?
MJH on accountability
"I doubt the Rangers FO looks at it on a WAR basis."
WAR is just another word for wins. And of course the Rangers will consider how many wins they expect acquisitions to contribute.
Now they may think that past WAR isn't indicative of future WAR, but that's a different story. The players they acquire will need to accumulate WAR to contribute.
@RFan: I looked into the #s and I think I found the differences in our calculations:
I can't seem to find the BR page with the $110m number. I found the one with $84m. The difference is in the ~$8m you sited plus the arb cases of Murphy, Harrison, Feliz, Soto, and maybe Uehara (he's listed as Arb 2 eligible on the page I saw but cannot be tendered per his contract- it's unclear whether they've included him in $110 as you site). If you non-tender Soto as per my plan, and save $3-4m on a Young trade, the roster I presented fits under the budget constraints you laid out. If Koji is part of te $110m you have even more wiggle room.
Are we taking arbitration into consideration here when thinking about next year's payroll?
Matt Harrison made $2.95M last year; I'd think he'd be making in the range of $5.5M-$6.5M next year. That's an extra $3M-$4M.
David Murphy made $3.625M last year. Have to think he'll be in the $6M-6.5M range next year. That's another ~$3M.
And Nelson Cruz made $10.5M last year. Could that number go down? I don't know if I've ever seen a guy's figure go down as his service time goes up. But anyway.
That's an extra 6-8 million taken away from the free agent budget. Maybe I'm overshooting the numbers, but that should be accounted for, if it hasn't already.
Estimates for arb players are included in RFan's $110m.
I may be mistaken, but I'm pretty sure Cruz signed an extension which locked his arbitration years up at $10.5 per.
Here's the link:
You're correct that they have Uehara listed as "Arb-2". I like the idea of jettisoning Young. I just don't know how realistic it is.
If we traded for Upton, we really wouldn't have much need for Murphy, so he becomes expendable. I don't know what you do with him though.
So I think the upshot is that the Rangers have a $100 to $110 mil payroll next year as is. And that probably buys you 75 to 80 wins without the Upton trade and moving Kinsler to COF.
The BIG QUESTION is whether ownership is willing to take payroll to $135 mil in 2013. If they are willing to do that, there are myriad scenarios that would allow the team to recoup the 16 WAR it's losing.
Do you think they will do that?
I think they have to make a big splash in the FA market. They've worked hard to build a valuable franchise. Attendance is at 3.5 mil in 2012. After the 2012 collapse and the loss of Josh Hamilton, if they don't do something quickly to signal that they are still serious about winning, I think people quickly lose interest. Attendance drops off dramatically. Season ticket sales decline.
They spent $ on Beltre and on Darvish and Kinsler. So I'm hopeful they're serious. And hopefully they can in fact take payroll to $135 mil.
I still think some GM will be dumb enough to accept a trade for Young if we eat about $13M, which I'd do all day. Murphy seems like someone who would be pretty attractive for a team looking for a guy playing for a contract. I would be more than OK rolling with an outfield of Upton/Cruz and a platoon of Murphy and Gentry. Leonys Martin should get first crack at CF next year.
What might make more sense, if we can somehow move Michael Young, is using Cruz as our primary DH to free up at bats for Mike Olt in RF. I'm not a big fan of having an outfielder with limited range like Olt probably would have, but if his bat is as close to being ready as we think, it might make up for the +/- of his glove.
Anyway, lots of options. I'm curious to see where JD takes this.
I know this suggestion is unlikely and perhaps won't even be all that popular, but I would look to solve the Michael Young problem by possibly trading him for another bad contract. While there are perhaps several options, I would call the Cubs and see what they would be willing to send back in terms of money for Alfonso Soriano. He has one more year on his contract than MY at 19 mil so it's not cheap but that would also likely mean greater compensation in terms of how much of that final year they would cover (I doubt they would include prospects as they're rebuilding and that would be counter productive for them). While Soriano is likely to regress some next year and MY is likely to show some improvement over his abysmal 2012, I would bet on Soriano being a slightly superior player over the next two years. Perhaps the greatest benefit though would be that Wash wouldn't be as bullish on putting Soriano into the lineup every day if he was going through a rough stretch. I also think Soriano's deficiencies suit this team better as he strikes out more but had a GB/FB ratio of .82 last season (compared to Young's 2.22) and an OPS of .821 (MY's was .682). Also, from an fWAR perspective, last season Soriano was a 4 win player while even FACE's 2011 season, which he's unlikely to approach again, was 3.7 (and as has been well chronicled, he was -1.4 this season). It would also free up more time for people to get rest at DH and give Olt more AB's as a 4 corners backup. Ultimately, even if the likely regression for Soriano and improvement for Young happen, Soriano's likely to be the better player and if the Cubs would include around 8-10 mil to cover the extra year, which is less than they are likely to have to include to trade him anywhere else, it seems worth it for the Rangers and would help the Cubs get out from under the last year of Soriano's deal while also netting them some more time to let Vitters develop in AAA.
Thanks for your responses. At least we have something to start with here.
I think your estimates are probably reasonable, although I would argue if you add to Elvis because he's younger and healthier and (possibly) because of his impressive agent, we should add a small penalty for the offensive difference (as Nate mentioned). There is a substantial difference in their offensive numbers. Yes, Elvis's defense is better, but people pay more for offense. This may be a penalty of a few bucks (I'd guess $1m/AAV or less) or a year or 2.
Just offhand, I'd be surprised if he got less than Reyes, but I'd also be a bit surprised if he got something over about $150. Teams just don't pay that much for defense.
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