We'll start with some reasoned analysis of the Milton Bradley deal. First, from a Baseball Prospectus chat with Jonah Keri:Bradley and Antonio Perez for Andre Ethier...
Ethier's numbers last year look pretty nice. But he was 23 and hitting in the Texas League and didn't even slug .500. Meanwhile Bradley-Kotsay-Payton is the defensive outfield in baseball. I don't think Payton's offense will repeat itself in '06, but I see Bradley's production landing somewhere between his monster 2003 and his very solid 2005. Straight up I already love the trade for Oakland. Throw in Antonio Perez, who's just 26, cheap, decent bat and versatile, and I think the A's just added 5-7 wins to their team for a good-not-great outfield prospect.
More trades, fewer free agent singings. Why...don't...more...teams...try this?
Although Keri does think that Beane could have done even better:BP had a "Free (Hee Seop) Choi" movement going like 4 years ago. Choi's burial by various teams has already eclipsed Durazoian levels.
The biggest surprise of the Ethier-Bradley deal to me was how Beane didn't get Choi thrown in for one of their 812 fringe starting pitcher candidates. I still think the guy would hit if you just gave him 400 PA vs. RHP and left him alone.
Couple of things to point out here:
- How come we haven't used the word "Durazoian" yet?
- The fact that Choi wasn't included in the deal could mean the a) Colletti is planning on playing him, b) even Beane doesn't want to try the Choi Experiment, or c) Beane felt that the A's have too many DH/1B types. And to appease Monkeyball, yes, the Choi Experiment was the name of my college roommate's sitar-based funk band.
- Keri can be forgiven, but we don't have 812 fringe starting pitching candidates. It's more like 1316. But who's counting?
The chat is free content, so non-subscribers can read the transcript. Keri also mentions that BP will be releasing book which has a chapter titled, "Why Doesn't Billy Beane's S*** Work In The Playoffs?"
From the Hardball Times, an article breaking down various trades has this tidbit:Milton Bradley brings an awful lot of baggage and injuries with him to Oakland, and I'm not sure he's good enough to justify the A's taking a risk on him. On the other hand, he's only four years older than the prospect the A's gave up, Andre Ethier, and Bradley does upgrade Oakland's offense and defense. Bradley has hit .290/.379/.463 over the past three years and when healthy he can play anywhere in the outfield. He allows the A's to move Nick Swisher to first base and potentially even shop current center fielder Mark Kotsay.
For Los Angeles, wanting to get rid of Bradley is understandable. At the same time, packaging him with Antonio Perez (a nice utility man who hit .297/.360/.398 this year and should have played a lot more than he did) for a prospect like Ethier is questionable. Ethier is not particularly young, he's not a great defender, and he has limited power. He's still a very good player, hitting .319/.385/.497 at Double-A this season while winning the Texas League MVP, but he's on track to become a league-average corner outfielder. The good news for the Dodgers is that he's just about ready for the majors.
THT also points out this quality piece of Bay Area journalism, which classifies last week's Texas-Nationals trade as "Alfonso Soriano for prospects."
The Boston Globe reports that the Orioles asked for Manny, a pitcher, and a pitching prospect to part with Miguel Tejada. According to the Globe, no dice. Local papers in Chicago are speculating that the Cubs may be interested in Tejada, as well as the World-Champion White Sox
LA Times is reporting that the Dodgers are in "extended negotiations" with Reggie Sanders and Kenny Lofton, and are vying with the Yankees (1b), Astos (LF), and Indians (RF) for Nomar Garciaparra's services.
After acquiring Carl Everett, the Mariners are looking into Washburn, Millwood, Elarton, and...Sidney Ponson?
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