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The Baseball Off-Season Thread: Miguel Sano and the Torturer's Stone

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Old
12-26-2012, 03:48 PM
  #26
DJ Spinoza
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Hanrahan had one good and one average season with the Pirates. He pitches when the team has a lead in the ninth inning and gets three outs in a game. He's not worth 10% of the payroll, period.

One way to evaluate Pirates deals is to ask whether successful teams in similar situations, like the Rays, would have done it. The answer in this case is yes, several times over. If they can do for Melancon what they did for several other relief pitchers--Hanrahan obviously not the least among them--then this will be a fine swap. Save tons of money on a bullpen arm, replacing him with at least two years of Melancon, and allocate the savings towards much more valuable positions than closer like SP and C. If any of Sands, de Jesus or Pimentel work out, so much for the better. Pimentel alone can probably easily be turned into a RP to add some depth and value over the next 3-4 seasons.

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12-26-2012, 03:51 PM
  #27
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God people have no sense of value.

What would you have traded hammer for? What do you honestly think a team would have given us for a fat, shaky, 7mm closer that every team knew we weren't going to pay?

This deal is fine, melancon is a good mlb pitcher and we have more bench options now.
I don't know how a guy who spent most of the year in Pawtucket is a "good mlb pitcher". Also don't know why the throw in of another well liked prospect.

I knew the ****ing Red Sox would fleece them as best they could, and they did.

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12-26-2012, 03:53 PM
  #28
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The point some of us are making is that the return is so pitiful that we're better off with just having Hanrahan and letting him go next year. The team is already clogged with Jerry Sands types, there is really nothing of significant use gained by this trade except we lose our all-star closer for a bunch of spare parts.

When this was initially discussed it was Iglesias who was supposed to be the focal point of this trade, the rug was pulled out from under us and instead of getting a good solid prospect to build around in the future that wouldve fit the team very well we then seemed to have just made a trade for the sake of getting rid of Hanrahan.
That would make this a baseball move. Joel Hanrahan was gone the minute they signed Jason Grilli. Keeping both is not in this organization's DNA. Grilli was picked to stay as he could be had for less.

As an aside, this guy a few weeks ago broke down the past two decades of FA signings by the Pirares. Frightening list once you put it all in one place. Three good signings that lasted the entire year. That is it:

Awful

Frank Bolick
Mackey Sasser
Zane Smith
Lance Parrish
Charlie Hayes
Mike Kingery
Doug Strange
Pete Schourek
Pat Meares
Luis Sojo
Mike Benjamin
Derek Bell
Ron Villone
Pokey Reese
Raul Mondesi
Jeff D'Amico
Chris Stynes
Ramon Vasquez
Chris Gomez
Joe Randa
Ryan Church
Tony Armas, Jr.
Jeromy Burnitz
Bobby Crosby
Joe Beimel
Lyle Overbay
Matt Diaz
Rod Barajas
Clint Barmes (jury's still out … but, yeah)
Erik Bedard

Hurt

Dale Sveum
Kevin Elster
Chris Singleton (never played/voided)

Not bad or okay (the players who just missed the top-10 list)

Dan Plesac
Mike Williams
Brian Boehringer
Julian Tavarez
Jose Mesa
Daryle Ward
Doug Mientkiewicz
Eric Hinske
Kevin Correia

Good for a half-season (traded)

Danny Darwin
Wil Cordero
Terry Mulholland
Kenny Lofton
Jeff Suppan
Roberto Hernandez
Javier Lopez

Good for a full season (not traded)

Ed Sprague
Reggie Sanders
Matt Stairs

http://mlb.sbnation.com/2012/11/30/3...e-agent-rumors

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Old
12-26-2012, 04:30 PM
  #29
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I'd like to see a breakdown of all the "prospects" we've gotten for guys like A-Ram, Bautista, Bay, etc....you want scary....

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12-26-2012, 04:54 PM
  #30
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Pretty crap trade. Melancon is a generic late 20's relief guy, De Jesus is utility man at best, Sands is probably going to end up AAAA guy, Pimental is the best of a bad lot and he's not very special.

Don't see the spot of moving Holt. He just a singles hitter but he does it well and is a rare Pirate to have a sense of the strike zone. I'd rather have him and his possible Aaron Miles-like career than De Jesus.

Hanrahan wasn't a great trade piece but he was certainly better than that collection of junk. Certainly looks like quantity over quality, would rather have taken 1 b-level prospect than those 4 that they got in return. I'll be surprised if any of the 4 end up with anything more than a marginal major league career.

Also who cares about saving money in the trade. There's no salary cap to worry about and Nutting is pulling down huge profits, not like the payroll is coming out of the fans' hands.


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12-26-2012, 05:01 PM
  #31
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If you look at the bigger picture, even though we traded Hanrahan, I think the the team is improved, on paper at least.

We didn't get much for him, but we probably weren't going to get much for him anyways.

Closers aren't that valuable, I don't see why teams will trade great players for pitchers only pitching 1 or 2 innings a game.

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12-26-2012, 05:08 PM
  #32
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Hanrahan was still a quality reliever, maybe not lights out like earlier in the season and last year but still quality. I honestly find it hard to believe that we couldnt of gotten better if we just held him until the trade deadline and sold him to a desperate team in the playoff hunt who usually is always looking for quality bullpen arms.

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12-26-2012, 05:11 PM
  #33
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Pirates were on the cusp of hitting .500, yet decide to give away their all star closer. Chose cheaper option over trying to win. Typical Pirates.

On the plus side, they have a seemingly good replacement for Hanrahan, and I assume it's relatively easy to find a decent set up guy.

Still, typical Pirates. I don't understand how they have fans.

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12-26-2012, 05:19 PM
  #34
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Holt is not a loss to us. His maximum upside is as a slap-hitting, crappy fielding 2b.
That's not to say that he can't have a career in baseball, but it is not likely that he would ever beat out Walker for the starting 2B job or any number of better fielders for the backup MIF job. His best bet is to find a team where he can provide some batting average to a team that doesn't already have a superior starter at 2B.

Return for Hanrahan was crap compared to what it should've been, but at this point in his career i think we actually got fair value for him. Melancon is more comparable to Hanrahan than some of you guys seem to realize. His poor 2012 was heavily affected by HRs. He played half of his games in Fenway and a bunch in Yankee stadium so I suspect that stat will correct itself at PNC. For Hanrahan's part he was actually not very good last year. What would you guys trade for a 7 million dollar reliever who by advanced stats should've had an ERA of around 5? We got a replacement pitcher who might outperform Hanrahan all by himself, who is also cheap and under control.

I think it's an okay trade. Not the one we deserved but not the one we feared either.

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12-26-2012, 05:27 PM
  #35
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Originally Posted by Illinest View Post
Holt is not a loss to us. His maximum upside is as a slap-hitting, crappy fielding 2b.
That's not to say that he can't have a career in baseball, but it is not likely that he would ever beat out Walker for the starting 2B job or any number of better fielders for the backup MIF job. His best bet is to find a team where he can provide some batting average to a team that doesn't already have a superior starter at 2B.

Return for Hanrahan was crap compared to what it should've been, but at this point in his career i think we actually got fair value for him. Melancon is more comparable to Hanrahan than some of you guys seem to realize. His poor 2012 was heavily affected by HRs. He played half of his games in Fenway and a bunch in Yankee stadium so I suspect that stat will correct itself at PNC. For Hanrahan's part he was actually not very good last year. What would you guys trade for a 7 million dollar reliever who by advanced stats should've had an ERA of around 5? We got a replacement pitcher who might outperform Hanrahan all by himself, who is also cheap and under control.

I think it's an okay trade. Not the one we deserved but not the one we feared either.
Agreed--this is exactly what I meant when I said, "would the Rays have made this trade?" However, asking that trade cuts both ways, because the Rays would have sold high in the middle of 2011.

Fairly average all the way around. I can't imagine moving him mid-season nets a better deal. At that point, they'd probably get two Pimentel-type players. Melancon alone is capable of outproducing Hanrahan in 2013, and will be under control for at least another year.

The remaining interesting questions for 2013 are whether another free agent will be added and whether they will try to flip Jones. I'm hoping for "no" on the second point, and it's hard to envision any more free agent acquisitions. I'm not aware who is left that fills a position of need.

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12-26-2012, 05:55 PM
  #36
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Agreed--this is exactly what I meant when I said, "would the Rays have made this trade?" However, asking that trade cuts both ways, because the Rays would have sold high in the middle of 2011.

Fairly average all the way around. I can't imagine moving him mid-season nets a better deal. At that point, they'd probably get two Pimentel-type players. Melancon alone is capable of outproducing Hanrahan in 2013, and will be under control for at least another year.

The remaining interesting questions for 2013 are whether another free agent will be added and whether they will try to flip Jones. I'm hoping for "no" on the second point, and it's hard to envision any more free agent acquisitions. I'm not aware who is left that fills a position of need.
I prefer Hanrahans k/9 over Melancon, the walks are less for Melancon but I like a late innings reliever preferably to miss bats more. Pirates arent exactly loaded up with those kinds of guys.

Hanrahan gave this club 3 solid years stat wise, we are in agreement that the trade shouldve been done last year but I guess the part we arent in agreement on is if there is some value to what he produces now. Back then the potential yield in a trade outweighed his usefulness to the team, right now I would say the lack of quality return in a trade makes him more useful for us to keep him. That ship sailed though and now we gotta eat it. This just has a bad appearance as this trade is just a walking stereotype of a typical Pirates move. A solid and usefull player that is making some decent money is shipped off for a collection of prospects who will likely never amount to what Hanrahan did.

I know I sound like I am down on prospects which is funny coming from me. Hanrahan isnt exactly old and he had a rough second half to last year but so did most of the entire team. For a good period of time he was one of the best relievers in all of baseball and this is what we get for him? The MLB roster absolutely got worse making this deal and the long term benefits are completely up in the air but they don't look all that bright as there isnt a ton up upside in the prospects. The argument that comes back is that he's too expensive but this is coming from a team that has had significant gains in attendance the last few years and the other revenue streams that come with that such as increased merchandising yet the salary hasnt really risen all that much. The guys making the big money are largely subsidized by their former clubs, this team is still with the bottom dwellers in salary spent out. I don't get on the GM's case for not wasting money on an overpaid UFA but in the case like this we hamstring ourselves to a mediocre if not bad trade and make the team worse just to save a few bucks for one season. It's this kind of crap that makes me really question whether there is a serious commitment from the top to field a winning baseball team.

/rant over

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12-26-2012, 06:02 PM
  #37
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Originally Posted by Illinest View Post
Holt is not a loss to us. His maximum upside is as a slap-hitting, crappy fielding 2b.
That's not to say that he can't have a career in baseball, but it is not likely that he would ever beat out Walker for the starting 2B job or any number of better fielders for the backup MIF job. His best bet is to find a team where he can provide some batting average to a team that doesn't already have a superior starter at 2B.

Return for Hanrahan was crap compared to what it should've been, but at this point in his career i think we actually got fair value for him. Melancon is more comparable to Hanrahan than some of you guys seem to realize. His poor 2012 was heavily affected by HRs. He played half of his games in Fenway and a bunch in Yankee stadium so I suspect that stat will correct itself at PNC. For Hanrahan's part he was actually not very good last year. What would you guys trade for a 7 million dollar reliever who by advanced stats should've had an ERA of around 5? We got a replacement pitcher who might outperform Hanrahan all by himself, who is also cheap and under control.

I think it's an okay trade. Not the one we deserved but not the one we feared either.
Exactly, then why trade him? He showed this summer he has the potential to be an every day 2nd baseman. That's a lot more than I can say about the players we received. I just think Holt will have more of an impact then the players we got in return. I don't understand why he was traded.

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12-26-2012, 06:16 PM
  #38
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Thanks guys for breaking down the trade with some detail and analysis behind it. Interesting.

Yeah, definitely appears that we sold a bit too late, than right on time, from a return perspective. Agreed that if we sold the Hammer at his trade value height, the FO would have been crucified by the public. But that is a position, (fan base cynicism) that the organization has truly earned through years of cultivation.

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12-26-2012, 07:01 PM
  #39
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You just can't win with some people. We trade him at either of the last two deadlines when he had value, they're upset that we're not "all in" for the postseason. They're upset now because he's been traded while being an above average but trending down and expensive closer whose value was down. But if we had kept him around and then inevitably lost him for nothing next offseason, they'd be upset about that too.

It's hard for me to care too much about this because bullpen arms come and go. The sky didn't fall when we let Matt Capps go, nor when we traded Dotel or Gonzalez, and it won't now.

There are people who know a hell of a lot more about baseball than I could ever hope to know who think Melancon is going to be really good fit us. Just remember where guys like Grilli and indeed, Joel Hanrahan were in their careers when we picked them up.

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Exactly, then why trade him? He showed this summer he has the potential to be an every day 2nd baseman.
He has not shown the defensive range to prove such a thing. Not really come close to showing it, actually.

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12-26-2012, 07:01 PM
  #40
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Exactly, then why trade him? He showed this summer he has the potential to be an every day 2nd baseman. That's a lot more than I can say about the players we received. I just think Holt will have more of an impact then the players we got in return. I don't understand why he was traded.
He's bad in the field and doesn't hit for power. Even if he maxes out his potential his best case is to be a kind of mediocre 2B.

I think he's the fifth most valuable piece out of these six. Stolmy and Sands are much riskier but if they work out then they could be impact players. Holt - best case - provides an empty batting average and subpar defense.

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12-26-2012, 07:31 PM
  #41
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I know I sound like I am down on prospects which is funny coming from me. Hanrahan isnt exactly old and he had a rough second half to last year but so did most of the entire team. For a good period of time he was one of the best relievers in all of baseball and this is what we get for him? The MLB roster absolutely got worse making this deal and the long term benefits are completely up in the air but they don't look all that bright as there isnt a ton up upside in the prospects. The argument that comes back is that he's too expensive but this is coming from a team that has had significant gains in attendance the last few years and the other revenue streams that come with that such as increased merchandising yet the salary hasnt really risen all that much. The guys making the big money are largely subsidized by their former clubs, this team is still with the bottom dwellers in salary spent out. I don't get on the GM's case for not wasting money on an overpaid UFA but in the case like this we hamstring ourselves to a mediocre if not bad trade and make the team worse just to save a few bucks for one season. It's this kind of crap that makes me really question whether there is a serious commitment from the top to field a winning baseball team.

/rant over
I just don't think this is right--there are several external analysts who like this as a good baseball move. The idea is not just to save money for the hell of it--it's to basically replace Hanrahan's production for cheaper/longer and add some depth in the process. It's definitely an average trade -- I just don't see making an issue out of it either way.

Hanrahan is a pretty good bullpen pitcher. He's only worth 10% of the payroll if you believe in the mystical value of closer mentality, etc. Even if that superstition were true, there's grounds for questioning Hanrahan in that regard. He had some luck to keep his numbers somewhat palpable last year, although he's also saying that he had some lower body injuries which effected his delivery, and that's plausible.

*Even if* it were the case that Hanrahan were still one of the best relief pitchers in baseball, he's still not worth that much. Huntington's ability to consistently reproduce a good bullpen with spare parts should prove as much. It just isn't a position that's vital to spend a lot of money on, which is why his value was highest right in the middle of the 2011 season. In that respect, I'd definitely grant you the earlier point that perhaps holding on to him until the break could have produced something valuable from a desperate team, but that's a risk and it subtracts Melancon from the 2013 team. With Melancon, it's possible that we replace Hanrahan completely and don't run into a similar problem where we are borderline division contenders and can't afford to lose a bullpen arm.

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12-26-2012, 08:09 PM
  #42
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You just can't win with some people. We trade him at either of the last two deadlines when he had value, they're upset that we're not "all in" for the postseason. They're upset now because he's been traded while being an above average but trending down and expensive closer whose value was down. But if we had kept him around and then inevitably lost him for nothing next offseason, they'd be upset about that too.

It's hard for me to care too much about this because bullpen arms come and go. The sky didn't fall when we let Matt Capps go, nor when we traded Dotel or Gonzalez, and it won't now.

There are people who know a hell of a lot more about baseball than I could ever hope to know who think Melancon is going to be really good fit us. Just remember where guys like Grilli and indeed, Joel Hanrahan were in their careers when we picked them up.



He has not shown the defensive range to prove such a thing. Not really come close to showing it, actually.
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He's bad in the field and doesn't hit for power. Even if he maxes out his potential his best case is to be a kind of mediocre 2B.

I think he's the fifth most valuable piece out of these six. Stolmy and Sands are much riskier but if they work out then they could be impact players. Holt - best case - provides an empty batting average and subpar defense.
I know he's pretty terrible defensively. Still thought he would be decent coming off the bench to pinch hit.

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12-26-2012, 09:46 PM
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We basically got a more raw version of Hanrahan, and a younger version of Jones, plus de Jesus and Pimentel. Im fine with it, Melancon looks like Hanrahan did when we got him and Hammer was pretty lucky with some of his numbers.

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12-26-2012, 10:25 PM
  #44
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I know he's pretty terrible defensively. Still thought he would be decent coming off the bench to pinch hit.
You're right - he might be a decent pinch-hitter but McKenry is on the bench as Catcher and someone who can play SS is on bench for MIF.

So your slap-hitting 2B is competing with a guy like Sands who has 40 homerun power potential. Or Tabata who already has a guaranteed deal. Snider, Presley etc...
We had room for Holt when the rosters expanded but I think he was almost certain to spend another year in AAA if he hadn't been traded.

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12-26-2012, 10:58 PM
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Pinch hitting, utility infielders aren't dime a dozen, they're a dime per two or three dozen, especially ones that can't actually field. Holt had a nice few weeks at the plate in the majors, but he'll likely be forgotten in a month.

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12-26-2012, 11:36 PM
  #46
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Holt holds zero trade value as there's about 200 guys who can do exactly the same thing he does. I love the guy, I think everyone does, but he's as easily forgotten as the immortal Matt Hague.

Melancon could very well repeat what we got in Hanrahan. People seem to forget that Hanrahan was a throw-in from Washington, a guy who was a failure as a closer and could barely throw a strike to save his life at the time. As long as Huntington continues to get results there is one thing I won't question the guy on and that is the bullpen. Hanrahan isn't worth nearly $7 million a season and I am expecting his numbers to take a big hit this year. I wouldn't be surprised in the least if Melancon has a better 2013 than Hanrahan.

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12-27-2012, 07:18 AM
  #47
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Melancon was lights out at the end of the year. I expect that to continue.

I hope hammer does well, but his control and velocity was erratic and he has a ton more pressure trying to close for Boston.

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12-27-2012, 02:08 PM
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Bored baseball fan here.

I like the trade for the Pirates. Anyone else feel like Neal Huntington has some of the worst luck with his moves?

Anyway, not surprising that they made this move.

The Pirates seem like a unique organization right now. They care way more about advanced stats than traditional stats and actually pay good money for players with good peripherals.

It seems like they're very into the Sabremetrics, more so than any other team in baseball, really.

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12-27-2012, 02:51 PM
  #49
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Bored baseball fan here.

I like the trade for the Pirates. Anyone else feel like Neal Huntington has some of the worst luck with his moves?

Anyway, not surprising that they made this move.

The Pirates seem like a unique organization right now. They care way more about advanced stats than traditional stats and actually pay good money for players with good peripherals.

It seems like they're very into the Sabremetrics, more so than any other team in baseball, really.
Which is interesting considering this team had to be brought kicking and screaming into this era of baseball. Littlefield coudln't be bothered to learn what those new statistics meant.

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12-27-2012, 03:37 PM
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Not only that but Dejean has reported the Pirates have their own proprietary set of "advanced stats" that they rely heavily on.

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