What is your opinion of the A.J. Pierzynski signing?
MJH on accountability
By all accounts Upton can only play a corner outfield spot. Same with Cruz and Murphy and now the DH role is taken by Berkman. I actually want an Upton trade to happen, in part because all 4 of those guys in the lineup would be great (along with Kins, Elvis, and AJ). But am I right that if an Upton trade happens, Upton, Cruz, Murphy, and Berkman can't all be in the lineup at the same time unless Berkman were to play more 1B than anticipated? JD sounded pretty adamant that Berkman wouldn't play the field too much so as to decrease the strain on his recently operated on knees.
I also don't think we would just give Cruz away for just anything, so unless we got a very good piece for him I'm not sure what our lineup would look like if we do get an Upton deal done. Any ideas?
If you get Upton and plan on playing him primarily as a COF then obviously that cuts into Cruz and Murphy playing time. Cruz can easily be moved across the diamond to LF, but that limits Murphy's AB's unless Cruz and Berkman are splitting DH duties. It creates an issue of sorts, but then again, injuries happen and depth is awesome to have.
On the other hand, you can try to trade Cruz to make room for Upton. Use the Mike Morse trade as base template for a Cruz trade. I value Cruz more than Morse, but maybe that's just me being a Ranger homer.
All that depends on if it gets done. Towers can't seriously dangle Upton out there on the market and go into camp with him still on the club, can he?
Nelson Cruz has only one year left on his deal, so we're not going to fetch a big haul for him. I don't think we'd give him away for just anything, but the best you can hope for is a good pitching prospect -- which we could use. Then you use the $10.5M savings on Cruz to pickup Javier Vazquez, and plug Justin Upton into RF.
To me the idea of getting Upton would be to add to the team, not detract from it. I don't think trading Cruz to make room for Upton is necessarily the right move.
Long term Upton is better than Cruz, but having both in the lineup is a better option to me than having one of them + Murphy. If anything, Murphy would/should be the one to lose playing time. I know people love Murphy but I guess I just don't see him as a day in and day out everyday player. He's very good in spurts but he's just as streaky as Cruz with less power.
I'm sure the Rangers would find a way to get Upton, Cruz, Murphy, and Berkman all in the line up on a regular basis...maybe not in the same game, but they would all get plenty of ABs.
All have played center field. If Upton is not traded that is where he will play, possibly as the primary center fielder [ pending no other OF changes, ie trading Kubel] for the Diamondbacks with Kubel and Ross on the corners. So if Upton is a Ranger the outfield becomes Murphy / Upton / Cruz with Berkman dhing, or even rotating with Cruz between DH and RF. Berkman has indicated that he wanted to play the field, either 1b or RF, on an occasional basis. However, by far the best choice in center field is Martin, moving Upton to right, and moving Cruz to left or working a trade. Another 3 way trade that could work is Cruz to the Tigers for Porcello, then Olt, Porcello and Borbon [ as corner backup for Kubel and Ross] for Upton. The Diamondbacks have had an interest in Porcello, but the Tigers do not want to give up Castellanos also for Upton. The Tigers want a right handed bat in left to platoon with Dirks. The 'BOOMSTICK' would fit well in the Tiger line up, and cost them a starting pitcher that is being forced out of the starting 5 by even younger call ups and has has only modest success.
I know I'm not playing the game right, but for the reasons you described (crowded COF) I don't think Upton is a fit here anymore.
Ya, I know he'd be an improvement. Ya, I know we're always looking for ways to improve. No, that doesn't change my mind.
Unless JD has a deal to move Cruz lined up already, I doubt we could even take on Upton's salary this year. When we signed Berkman that door closed. My preference now is to roll with the lineup we've got and hope Cruz plays like the all-star he can be in likely his only big contract year. I don't see the FO viewing Upton - Cruz - prospect package as a big enough upgrade over Cruz + current prospects to warrant pulling the trigger on this.
Towers said Ross is going to play CF. If Upton came to Texas, it wouldn't change our CF situation. It would mean either Murphy or Cruz would be moved.
Martin/Gentry CFMurphy/Cruz. LFTakes advantage of meaningful L/R batting splits. Gives up some defense when Cruz plays.
@Amigo; you would have to put Upton in LF, Cruz in RF, and Gentry/Martin in CF... then Murphy would be your swing OF. You could also move Muprhy to LF, Upton to RF, and then have Cruz DH on the days Berkman plays 1B, which, as you pointed out, won't happen very often. Murphy could also get some ABs in CF... especially if Gentry and Martin struggles.Keep in mind though that our 4th, and even 5th OFer, will see alot of playing time given Wash's obsession with keeping everyone "fresh". I think every player on the 25 man roster will contribute in 1 way or another. I don't think our OF would be crowded adding Upton. I have a feeling Martin is going be a bust (or Wash won't trust him) and Gentry will be exposed as a full time player. If that happens, Murphy will play ALOF of CF and that's not a good thing.
Why is everyone so intent on sticking Upton in 1 of the corners? Why can't he play CF? Is he simply not a good defender or is he too slow? He's a pup and under the right tutelage (Gary Pettis), and assuming he's athletic and fast enough, there's no reason to think he couldn't play CF, is there?
Gentry/ Martin have a lot more range and speed than Upton.
Since the Mariners are full of terrible trade ideas lately, maybe we should offer them Cruz for Danny Hultzen (after we acquire Upton). I say that partially in jest, but they do kind of look like fools for getting Mike Morse, and offering their farm for Upton.
This is sort of a sidenote, but I think that next year's outfield is more of a concern than this year's as far as personnel is concerned. Murph and Nelly are FAs. That leaves us Leonys and Gentry as of right now. Seems that we are going to HAVE to acquire another outfielder or two to play for us next year. I can't imagine we resign both Murph and Nelly and we have no one in our minor league system that will be primed for an outfield spot next season. We can move Kinsler to a COF spot, but we are still thin at the position as a whole. Thoughts on this being a different angle on trying to acquire a top notch OF via trade?
@ primi timpano,
I totally agree with your idea about two platoons in LF and CF. The problem, at least when I've thought about it, is how to do this and stay within the confines of the 25 man roster.
Say you roll with a 7 man bullpen, allowing for 4 bench spots. Your unused catcher on any given day takes one of those spots, as do your two unused outfielders. That leaves only one spot for a utility infielder, meaning that guy would have to be able to back up all 4 infield positions. Do we have anybody on the 40 man who could do this? If so, let's do it. If not, we've got a problem.
So, all of that to say, I think a 5 man outfield would be great but it's just impractical. I guess if Martin were to stay down on the farm you could roll with Upton and Cruz, but I highly doubt that go down. I want Upton, but it probably won't happen for the reasons listed above. If we can trade Cruz post trading for Upton, I think that would be awesome.
First off unless JD had a plan to dump either murphy or cruz this deal isn't getting done. NO WAY IN HAITI'S we have 5 outfielders on the 25 man roster! Gentry and Martin are in CF and there is no way short of an act of God that Upton, Murphy or Cruz ever sees anytime in CF! Not one of them is fast enough to play CF and Cruz and Murphy aren't good enough defensively to play the position.
Next Pablo "Keep in mind though that our 4th, and even 5th OFer, will see alot of playing time given Wash's obsession with keeping everyone "fresh". "Where are you getting this? MY, Cruz, Elvis, Kinsler all played more than 150 games last yr and Hamilton and Beltre would have but they got injured or drink to many redbulls. If Wash had been worried about his team getting worn out we probably would have won the Division and not limped in to the playoffs like we did last yr.
I could go on but I have tired head now.
I think you guys are forgetting the big picture here. Right now our budget is at around $125M. If we traded Elvis for Upton, we'd be adding about $5M to that figure, taking us to about $130M. If we strictly used prospects, we'd be adding all of Upton's $9.75M, taking us to $135M -- over the expected budget.
At that point, it almost seems like a necessity to shed Cruz's $10.5M.
Before we start talking about platoons and carrying 5 outfielders for 3 spots, it has to work from a financial perspective. Without a feasible monetary situation, none of what is being mentioned above will exist. That's my two cents.
If Upton is here, I have to imagine that Cruz will go, if at all possible. I could see possible landing zones as the Yankees (since they are very short of right handed bats in the outfield), Detroit who is looking for a right handed bat in the outfield, Baltimore might be able to use a DH, Tampa Bay could definitely use another outfielder, but we'd probably have to absorb a lot of the salary, atlanta might be interested so they could move Prado to third ...
Those all seem like viable landing zones, though I have absolutely no idea what we could get back in return....or, if any of them would really be interested...
If Cruz goes, you have Murphy, Upton at the corners and Gentry, Martin in CF. Both Berkman and Moreland could play some very limited time in the outfield if needed on an emergency basis...
Really???? We are still talking about what if's??? Look guys, its the middle of January, pitchers and catchers report in about 6 weeks. We need to wrap our heads around the players we got, plus maybe another Cody Ross shows up in Spring Training and forces the Rangers to not send him back to the minors. I like the leaner team, we were starting to look like the old Rangers sitting around waiting for someone to hit a 3-run blast the last half of the season. Home runs are great but for the most part station-to-station baseball wins games. Win games = happy fans = more respect outside of Rangerland = more FA's thinking twice about going somewhere else = the beginning of a dynasty = REALLY HAPPY FANS! Get where I;m going? 3 good seasons are just a blip on the screen lasting a couple of seconds. We are going to have to win consistently to be taken seriously. I am excited, as should the players be, that we can win without Hamilton, that we don't need a Cliff Lee or Zach Grienke. It will be 100 times sweeter doing it the right way. Hang tight, be true, and get ready for one hell of a season!
Sorry, Robbie Ross!
I'm so tired of Upton posts
Let's get together on the counting, because I agree a single UIF is not optimal. 8 position players, 5 rotation pitchers, 7 relievers total 20. Add the backup catcher, and 2 platoon OF, and I see two open bench spots. And Murphy and Cruz are good PH options.
Tommy, the Diamondbacks want Eaton to play center field, or fall back to a solid Parra. That is why all this trade talk for Kubel or Upton, seeing both with Ross as corner out fielders. Obviously, if Upton is acquired and Cruz remains, there is congestion in right field. Either Crus then moves to left or off the team to Atlanta, so Prado can move to third, Chicago, Detroit, Chicago, Cleveland or New York.
You're forgetting the DH tho. You've got 8 position players, true, but the DH (presumably Berkman) gives you 9 players hitting everyday. 12 pitchers + 9 lineup hitters + 1 backup catcher + 2 platoon OFs = 24 men, leaving only one guy to man the infield if someone goes down. This is why I wish Berkman was about two years younger without the knee problems. Being able to pencil him into the field on a semi-regular basis would bring alot more flexibility. It seems alot more realistic to ask your one backup infielder to backup 2B, SS, and 3B if you can consider Berkman a sensible emergency 1B if Moreland goes down, but to ask one guy to backup all four is kind of silly.
If it's Kate, you guys are all in the outfield and I'm the only one lined up. There's my 2 cents.
Andrew, right you are and thx. The infield does become a problem. Berkman can spell first base, but I have to agree I have no idea for an infielder who can cover the middle and third.
If my memory is correct, didn't Blanco back up all three of those in 2010? Not that I'm crazy about hit returning or anything. We need some reliable bats off the bench. Esteban German in game 1 of the World Series wasn't fun.
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