What is your opinion of the A.J. Pierzynski signing?
MJH on accountability
I wonder if we're taking the Rangers' interest in Upton at their price, and using it to make their interest and Upton into more than they really are.
Part of Upton's value is the belief that he'll be better than he has actually been. But he already has more than 700 games and 3000 PAs in the majors, and it takes a leap of faith (or perhaps stupidity?) at this point to paint him as a star if he lands in Texas.
Acccording to fangraphs, his defensive ability is not good ...he's worse than the average ML outfielder. And at the plate, his career OPS is .832, which is solid but far from spectacular, with years ranging from the high 700s to the high 800s in no particular pattern. While he'd perhaps make a fine addition, it's hard to see "future star" written in that history, and perhaps that narrative is simply a leftover of when he broke into the league and created expectations (still unmet) that over time he'd get to star level. As time goes on, those early expectations have to be tempered to match reality.
Given the size of his contract vs his production, there's sizable risk with Upton. Is it really worth it when the ask is high?
David, I'm with you in being suspect on Upton. I see him and his brother as the same player, merely with different fortunes. Justin landed in the easier league and in a hitter's park.
But back on point... I can't see how JD fails to do one of the following:1. Trade IK now (eat some of the salary.)2. Trade IK at deadline (eat some of the salary.)3. Trade Elvis now4. Trade Elvis at deadline
David, that could be so, that Upton will not approach Hamilton's numbers, but they will not be bad. The Rangers could always wait for Brinson or Mazara or Guzman, or even Gallo to develop, or give the position to E Beltre and see if his 5 tools translate to the majors ( which I doubt), but all of this will not happen under the best circumstances until 2015 by the earliest. So Upton, at the moment (2013 season) is the best alternative or his like: Stanton, Ethier, C. Gonzalez, Soriano ( for that matter. in the short term) or even an aging but hopefully healthy Lance Berkman ( who in the past has not wanted to play for the Rangers).
Profar, I think a trade at the end of the 2013 season is also one of the feasible resolutions, and I think Profar being the one to be traded has to be added as one of their possible outcomes. I don't think Profar would necessarily be one of their first choices, but I can definitely see it happening for the right player (a truly elite talent, such as Stanton) and under the right circumstance (Andrus agrees to a contract reasonable enough that he makes sense to keep),
That means that instead of 4 choices, JD will be picking from 9:1. Trade IK now*2. Trade IK at deadline*3 Trade IK after 2013 season4 Trade Elvis now 5 Trade Elvis at deadline 6 Trade Elvis after 2013 season7 Trade Profar now 8 Trade Profar at deadline 9 Trade Profar after 2013 season
*I have serious doubts that the Rangers are going to opt for any consideration of eating Kinsler salary. He is only 30, he's been providing loads of surplus value every year, and while 2012 was an off year by his standards, he still played plus defense and yielded surplus value. By WAR criteria he will still be underpaid going forward even if he doesn't produce any better than he did in 2012, and it's more likely he'll bounce back closer to his norms.
David, I don't see the Rangers trading Profar for anyone except Stanton, but yes I guess that option needs to be on the table.
As Eric elaborated Profar's bat simply has more upside than Elvis...and Jurickson's contract is going to be so very team friendly for a long time...permitting us an opportunity to lock him up for a decade.
I concede that these attributes also make Profar an exceptionally valuable trade asset.
Profar, I don't disagree with anything you've said about Profar. As I said earlier, I certainly don't expect that trading him is going to be at the top of their list of choices. But it is a way to resolve the logjam, and there are clearly circumstances that would make it more feasible (namely, Andrus signed for the long-term on a team-friendly number like Weaver did) and players for whom you'd consider moving him. So if we are listing the choices, of which JD has to end up picking one, then the ones with Profar - as unlikely as we think they are - have to be on the list, that's all I'm saying.
As far as *likely* scenarios...I only see two.
1 Trade Elvis this offseason.2 Trade Elvis at the trade deadline.
And I'd still put my money on #1...even if it were for pitching prospects or something other than an Upton type.
As per Ian...the very fact that we are discussing him at 1B and as an OFer...portends to his soon transition to super-utility. First the #Face. Then the #Body.
And even if Ian can hold onto second base for another year or so via an Elvis trade...there will soon be pressure via Sardinas or via another of our fine middle infield prospects.
And c'mon... Ian's not cut out to be to an everyday first baseman...or outfielder. He's just not.
1 I think "trade Elvis after the 2012 season" is far more likely than either of those two.2 I think that IF Ian moves to another position, it's only temporary, and it only lasts for one season at the most.3 I don't agree that a discussion of Kins at another position means anything more than fans in this forum recognize the logjam that seems to exist in the middle infield, and are looking at solutions. But the Rangers internal discussions may be (and probably are) way different than what you see here.4 Should it happen, I don't see the problem in having Ian at 1B this season. Ideally you want a basher there, who might suck on defense but can be "hidden" a bit by the lesser demands of the position ....but the fact that Ian is too good an infielder shouldn't mean he's disqualified, especially when he's also as good offensively as anyone else under active consideration to man the position. 5 By your criteria, ARod became a "super-utility" player when he moved to NY and had to shift positions. How silly. As long as Ian is productive, and starts, I wouldn't worry about the labels. 6 If you TRULY think that Kinsler is nothing more than a utility-caliber player, making about $15M a year, then JD should be fired for incompetence in giving such a stupid deal less than a season ago. Is that what you're saying?
A-Rod made a one-time position change due to the previous existence of a team-captain-hall-of-fame. That's *very* different than what Ian will soon be...e.g. a man without a natural and logical everyday position.
Your idea of bouncing him to first and then back to second is only validation of his coming transience. When does that kind of thing happen to a guy just entering year one of a $75 million extension!?!
Do I think JD made an epic blunder in signing Kinsler? Abso-frikkin-lutely. A year ago on another forum I started a long and detailed thread/treatise against the notion of the Rangers extending him. Some of my reasons at that time? 1. The imminent age-related decline in IK's ability to steal bases and loss in his defensive range. 2. The imminent loss of power. Ian's physical stature makes him a dubious power hitter moving forward...esp as he nears his mid thirties.3. The options in the Rangers farm system.4. My general predilection against extending guys over 32.5. I refuse to trust a player who can't hit anywhere but in his very generous home park. (3 years of data here)
So yes...I think JD had a complete belly flop in this instance. But I don't make it a habit to fire GMs for blunders (however epic), preferring to see the big picture.
It appears to me that you've created your own preferred narrative on Kinsler's situation, and then have "validated" that narrative in your own mind by cherry-picking data and situations to fit those predilections (or simply creating false "facts" to fit your theory). Signing an extension at 29 entails "imminent" loss of power, "imminent" age-related decline in speed, somehow means he's "nearing his mid-thirties," and equates to an extension at "over 32"?
Needless to say, I'm clearly not buying your hypothesis that at 30 Kinsler has one foot in the grave and another on a banana peel, predestined for failure and in the twilight of his career already. And I find no falling sky in having a player who might change positions (or might not) depending on how the roster around him changes. But we'lI see what happens.
I'll reiterate & concur "God's" ORIGINAL and first narrative, to lead this ultra-long forum off:
"StupidDesperateShows either a lack of real plan with Kinsler, Andrus & Profar or a concession of a failed planto recieve the return they'd counted on by trading ONE them."
This winter, with lttle to connect to, is a flop infinding pieces that fit, to make theteam bettter.I agree with all the NON-signings(waffling on Grienke often). I agree with ALL the small signings.
The FA Mrkt is done & emptied, from any useable, fitting spare parts to make this machine better.It's now down to Trade & Deal.
Kinsler at 1B, really?
Perhaps and I'm just throwing this out, we should be thinking of turning Profar into a centerfielder. I believe he has all the tools to be a very good Centerfielder. Centerfield is considered to be more of a premium postion than second base so he would not loose any value and could switch back to shortstop should we eventually loose Andrus. With both Murphy and Cruz being free agents at the end of 2013 I think Martin could transition to a corner outfielder. I believe the team will have no interest in resigning Cruz, but look for them to strike a deal with Murphy.
The conversation over Kinsler moving to first is only viable if he can take over for Hamilton in the #3 hole, but on the Rangers current roster, the only player that has a remote chance of doing that is Mitch Moreland. The commitment to Mitch is also a driving force in trying to pull off an Upton or Stanton trade. All of this major focus is predicated over Profar, and is he ready. In time I can even see a debate over 'Who is the best: Harper, Trout or Profar? . and the answer is take an ALL STAR SS who is a consistent .300/.400/..850, aka a Hanley Ramirez in his best years. But he is soon to be 20 batted .281 not .331 at AA, and simply may not be ready in 2013. Plus, he is not even entrenched at a given position as Kinsler is, and if not obtaining an Upton, I am still of the opinion Profar, until 2015 or a certain Boras client signs an extension, would have lee sproblem slipping over to RF, then Kinsler playing first, which also takes at bats away from Moreland and OLT. These four are keys to the Rangers 2013, if they are to have success.along with an emerging Leoyns Martin in center.But, Profar may need another year of success in the minors. That is what Spring Training is all about. If Martin, Olt and Profar demonstrate that they are ready, then the opening day lineup should read: 2b Kinsler - ss Andrus - 1b MORELAND / 3B- Beltre - c AJP - dh Cruz / and a solid bottom three of LF Murphy - RF PROFAR & CF MARTIN.
First off, Happy Christmas, you guys.
I think Profar has been pretty consistent about his anti-Kinsler salary talk for quite a while. However, I don't think it's a bad signing, not yet at least. For the next 5 years, he needs to produce 3.0 WAR per season, given that the price of each WAR is at $5 million. It will be up in to $6+ million range by the time it's through.
I remain confident Kinsler has at least one, maybe two, 4.5-5.0 WAR seasons left in him, but that's contingent on him staying at 2nd base. He will not justify his contract if he is moved to 1st base over the long haul, and it's doubtful he would if we was moved to the outfield.
Last year, his production was not indicative of the player he is to be for the next 2-3 seasons, in my opinion. Even at that, he produced 3.2 fWAR, meaning if he was as bad as he was last season over the next 5 (at 2B), he will have earned his money. Take that into consideration.
Logically, Elvis Andrus needs to be moved so Ian Kinsler can stay at second base. That's the only way we're a playoff contender in 2013.
Merry Christmas to all.
Eric, the way I see it is that Kinsler had a down year and he still put up a lot of surplus value last season. Going forward, in order to justify his extension, at $5M/WAR he'll only need to provide 15 WAR over 5 seasons, and if the price of a "win" goes up to $6M, it takes only 12.5. With his proven potential to put up 5 WAR years and higher (over the last 5 seasons he has totaled right at 25 WAR), It's hard to envision that he can't produce only 12.5 WAR or more over the next five seasons.
And to the root point, even if he's temporarily moved to 1B for a season while the Rangers sort out their long-term direction, he can be moved back to 2B once it's resolved, or he can be traded. Moving him back to 2B, or trading him to a team who wants him to fill their need at 2B, either way he'll still have plenty of projectible surplus value.
That's why I think the Rangers have no urgency to trade Andrus at this time. They see a need to first figure out how the pieces fit, including the biggie of how Profar plays in the bigs (or if he's even ready at this point), before making an irreversible move, and there's nothing they can do now operating blind that they can't do better later, with more knowledge in hand.
At this point, the Rangers have little choice. Who do you guys see that could be more valuable at first base?
As for me, I do not think that Kinsler at 2nd and Moreland at 1st produces the most WAR. That is, I would expect only 4 WAR from this combination. However, I would expect 7 WAR from Kinsler/Berkman. I would expect 6.5 WAR from Profar/Kinsler. I do not like LaRoche and would expect only about 5 WAR from Kinsler/LaRoche and would not like to be locked into a 4 year deal with LaRoche at LaRoche's price. Also, I am one that would prefer Profar in the minors at age 20 so that the Rangers will in effect trade Profar's age 20 season for his age 26 season.
As I see it, the Rangers need to trade for or sign a 4 WAR 1st baseman, especially on a short term situation. The trouble is, there aren't many that fit. I was hoping for Berkman or Swisher but now Swisher is gone. I know there are some that say that Berkman is a douche and that he has often refused to play for the Rangers, but money talks. If Berkman is healty, couldn't Berkman be had on a one year deal for $10 million? This would add WAR without losing any prospects and would delay or avoid the Kinsler/Andrus/Profar problem that many fear.
To me the question is which is better for the the team next year among these three options currently on the roster.
1b Kinsler, 2b Profar1b Moreland/Olt 2b Kinsler1b Moreland/Snyder 2b Kinsler
The problem with the first set is that Kinsler is probably a minor upgrade from a platoon centered on Moreland offensively. It really just matters on if you think the offensive drop, and I would expect an offensive drop from a Moreland platoon to Profar, and the defensive gain of having Profar at 2b and Kinsler at 1b. That is assuming there is a defensive gain from Kinsler at 1b.
That is assuming there is a defensive gain from Kinsler at 1b.
That is an assumption that should be scrutinized. Kinsler is shorter with less wingspan, presenting a smaller target. He doesn't have the arm that Moreland and Olt have. And he has been known to be mistake-prone at times.
Beyond all this, his greatest trait....the range...is largely of little benefit at first base. Most often a 1st baseman is going to field (or not field) the ball within a step or two.
Now I make this last statement with some hesitation. I admit to being *curious* about what Ian's range might mean at first base. With his quicker feet perhaps he could play deeper than you traditionally see, permitting his range to re-enter the equation. It's interesting to consider.
Offensively, as has been documented, he wouldn't compete well with other first basemen.
"As far as *likely* scenarios...I only see two.
1 Trade Elvis this offseason.2 Trade Elvis at the trade deadline."
ProfarMVP and I agree on this, so it must be true!
"Acccording to fangraphs, [Upton's] defensive ability is not good ...he's worse than the average ML outfielder."
Upton had a negative UZR in 2012. But one season of UZR isn't conclusive. Between 2009 and 2011, Upton accumulated 21 UZR, which was 9th best among outfielders during those 3 seasons. Upton has been a good defender.
1 I meant to write "Baseball Reference" but unthinkingly wrote "fangraphs" instead. Sorry about the confusion.
2 With Upton, my statement that he's a below-average fielder wasn't based on just one season. Baseball Reference calculates Defensive WAR which is a calculation against the average ML player at that position, not against a AAAA player ....and looking back over any period you want to pick, he has a negative defensive WAR as follows:
1 year (2012 only) = - 0.42 year average = - 0.13 year average = - 0.24 year average = - 0.25 year average = - 0.3
3 If you want to quibble with BR's methodology in how they ascertain defensive prowess, feel free. But their analysis - and one on which WAR totals are based - say that he's below average.
Sorry, it's the BIGGEST Smoke Screen of the Winter. Perfect ploy, by Daniels & Co.
@ProfarMVP: in fairness, Ian is likely to be better offensively than Moreland or Olt. Do you disagree?
"If you want to quibble with BR's methodology in how they ascertain defensive prowess, feel free."
I prefer UZR to DRS. But even if you prefer to look at both, you have one rating system that suggests that he's slightly below avg. and one that suggests he's a good bit above avg. He's definitely not bad.
The issue is really not Kinsler's offense. Kinsler's offense is going to be on the team next year whether or not we move him around.
The real issue is which makes the team better a Moreland based 1b platoon or Profar at 2b. Long run I'm guessing Profar at 2b does, next year I'm guessing that the platoon would be better. Honestly, I'm betting that things get sorted out in the remainder of the off season. But it is very nice to know that we don't have to have Profar and Olt on the roster next year if we don't think its out best option.
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