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Carlos Martinez? And Other New SP Trade Ideas...


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Apparently, the Cardinals are willing to deal Carlos Martinez - and some of their younger outfielders. 
https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2019/07/cardinals-reportedly-open-to-trading-young-outfielders-carlos-martinez.html

Martinez is curious - they moved him to the pen this year, and he's been solid throughout his career. 
He's owed $11.7m this year, and in 2020 and 2021 - with a $17m team option in 2022 and $18m option in 2023 ($500k buyouts each year)

Martinez is quite expensive for a reliever - though not horribly so if he becomes a dominant relief arm, which isn't impossible, but there's also some hope he could return to the rotation. I haven't read much, but I'm assuming there's some long-term durability/health concerns.

I'm sure it'd take some extra pieces - but could a Calhoun for Martinez swap be realistic? The Angels get at worst an expensive reliever, at best a controlled-rotation arm for a reasonable rate, and open up room for Adell. 
The money is comparable. Calhoun gives St. Louis insurance if Ozuna walks this offseason (he's a FA) and Jose Martinez can't field worth a damn.

I'm sure it'd take an extra prospect or two from the Angels but might be worth a look - nor do I expect Calhoun to be the main attraction for St. Louis in a deal - but it seems like it would match up for both clubs needs.

Edited by totdprods
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I saw this a few minutes ago and thought about it.  I have zero idea of the value Martinez has considering he is no longer a starter and is really expensive for a relief pitcher.  If he is someone that Eppler believes can start again then it is a no brainer, go out and get him.  I have no idea if Kole gets it done because like I said I don’t know his trade value.  But man I am leaning towards not trading away Kole because of how the team is playing.  That being said if I had to give up a guy like Marsh or a guy like Kole, I would trade Kole and hope the Angels could go get a different RF for the remainder of the season.

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19 minutes ago, #WeNasty said:

I saw this a few minutes ago and thought about it.  I have zero idea of the value Martinez has considering he is no longer a starter and is really expensive for a relief pitcher.  If he is someone that Eppler believes can start again then it is a no brainer, go out and get him.  I have no idea if Kole gets it done because like I said I don’t know his trade value.  But man I am leaning towards not trading away Kole because of how the team is playing.  That being said if I had to give up a guy like Marsh or a guy like Kole, I would trade Kole and hope the Angels could go get a different RF for the remainder of the season.

Yeah, there's two big factors in my mind for a deal built around Martinez and Calhoun...

1) Is Adell ready? Because as mentioned here and elsewhere, the team's chemistry is in a fragile state, and we are competing. Do you risk removing a popular .800 OPS bat in the middle of the stretch run for a rookie?

2) Can Martinez go back to the rotation?

Though, I guess Martinez could still be worth it if Eppler thinks he can be the next Davis/Chapman/Kimbrel/Miller....$11.7m is about the going rate for a top-end 'closer'. 

Martinez as a RP in '18-'19: .182 BAA, 1.83 ERA, and in 39 innings pitched, 24 hits, 1 home run, 18 walks, 41 strikeouts.

Kole does seem like someone who would do well in St. Louis - his power and defense would play well. 

I can see Martinez being a target regardless of Kole's inclusion too.

Edited by totdprods
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Cards already have an outfield jam, so they probably aren't interested in Calhoun. And money aside, Martinez is an elite reliever and fan favorite on a team with annual playoff aspirations. 

I doubt they deal him, but if they do, it will be because someone was desperate enough to pay something that St. Louis would be stupid to say no to. I don't want the Angels to be that team. 

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2 hours ago, Second Base said:

Cards already have an outfield jam, so they probably aren't interested in Calhoun. And money aside, Martinez is an elite reliever and fan favorite on a team with annual playoff aspirations. 

I doubt they deal him, but if they do, it will be because someone was desperate enough to pay something that St. Louis would be stupid to say no to. I don't want the Angels to be that team. 

They have a jam, but they also said to be shopping OFs from that jam. Ozuna is a FA, Bader isn't hitting much, Fowler has rebounded a bit but is still underwhelming...O'Neill has some concerns, Martinez is still hitting, but not as much, and that really amplifies his defensive shortcomings.

Kole isn't a fit the way their roster is currently constructed, but if they deal away a young OF or two in a deal for a SP and expect to lose Martinez (non-tender) and Ozuna to FA this winter, Calhoun makes sense. 

I imagine the only reason they're putting Martinez on the market is because they want that salary back and there's some durability concerns, plus, with the costs that are being associated with Ray, Stroman, Boyd, etc., it doesn't hurt to see what offers you'd get for your own controllable SP.

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2 hours ago, totdprods said:

They have a jam, but they also said to be shopping OFs from that jam. Ozuna is a FA, Bader isn't hitting much, Fowler has rebounded a bit but is still underwhelming...O'Neill has some concerns, Martinez is still hitting, but not as much, and that really amplifies his defensive shortcomings.

Kole isn't a fit the way their roster is currently constructed, but if they deal away a young OF or two in a deal for a SP and expect to lose Martinez (non-tender) and Ozuna to FA this winter, Calhoun makes sense. 

I imagine the only reason they're putting Martinez on the market is because they want that salary back and there's some durability concerns, plus, with the costs that are being associated with Ray, Stroman, Boyd, etc., it doesn't hurt to see what offers you'd get for your own controllable SP.

Trade current outfielders in their 20's with upside so they can gamble on a more expensive 30- something with less team control that's never played in the NL before?

No chance. 

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3 minutes ago, Second Base said:

Trade current outfielders in their 20's with upside so they can gamble on a more expensive 30- something with less team control that's never played in the NL before?

No chance. 

They don’t seem too hot on their OFs - O’Neill has a few red flags. And they could use another good SP. If they dealt from that pool, Calhoun could be a decent bridge.

The Pham trade shows that St. Louis can shake things up. 

Edited by totdprods
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Edited the thread title to open this up to broader discussion with a few more SP names that might emerge as possibilities, including a few more from the NL Central...

I'm increasingly believing the Angels will be buyers - and that a big-name, high-impact arm is going to be tough to pull in, as well as possibly a little foolhardy with the playoff odds still stacked against us. 

With that in mind, I'm trying to consider under-the-radar arms that might wind up being more likely - guys that could cost something as simple as a Michael Hermosillo or Jose Rojas or Jesus Castillo. 

Jordan Lyles, Francisco Liriano
Lyles is making $2m this year and is a FA at year's end, currently owns a 5.16 ERA (4.44 FIP) and 1.40 WHIP in 75 innings for Pittsburgh, with decent peripherals (80 strikeouts, 31 BB, 74 hits, 12 HR). 
He was shelled his last two starts - 7 ER in 0.2 IP on 7/13, and 7 ER in 4 IP on 7/4 - before those two starts, he was sitting at a 3.71 ERA across 13 GS.
Liriano, making $1.8m, is also a FA, and sports a 3.33 ERA in relief across 44 games - only 37 hits, 6 HR, 24 BB, 44 K in that time. 
Eppler could probably acquire both for a pretty minor cost, barely add any salary, and give our pen and rotation a little help to boost our '19 chances without doing anything to hurt '20.

Tanner Roark
The Reds are on the fence, and still leaning in the buyer column, but like the Angels, have a lot of teams ahead of them and are probably better off selling pending FAs where able to help the future.
Roark is a FA at year's end, has a $10m salary on the year, and has been quite durable - 18 GS, 3.99 ERA, 4.20 FIP, 97 IP, allowing 102 hits, 13 HR, 31 BB, 95 K. He has a 3.39 ERA against the AL across 26 G/23 GS and 154 IP. 
The Reds gambled away some prospects this past offseason for some immediate veteran help, and it didn't quite pan out.
They're unlikely to do a full fire-sale and will hope to compete again next year, so they may be a little more approachable with LAA's fringier young players for them to gamble on, like Taylor Ward, Rojas, Hermosillo.

Kyle Freeland, Antonio Senzatela, German Marquez, Jon Gray...Jake McGee, Bryan Shaw
The Rockies were led by strong efforts from their rotation last year, and almost all have stepped backwards this year.
Freeland, a 26-year old lefty who won 17 games with a 2.85 ERA in 33 GS last year has been horrible earning a AAA demotion to go with a 7.39 ERA in 13 GS. Controlled through '22.
Gray, at 27,  is the durable 'ace', sporting a 4.11 ERA through 120 IP, controlled through '21.
Marquez was electric last year, striking out 230 in 196 IP and a 3.40 FIP in 33 GS, but his strikeouts are down and he's up to a 5.12 ERA in 21 GS this year. Only 24 though, controlled through '22
Senzatela was decent last year in a hybrid role, 4.38 ERA in 23 G/13 GS, but he too has slumped this year - 5.79 ERA in 17 GS. Only 24, he's controlled through '23. 
Jake McGee is under contract for $9m this year and next year, with a $2m buyout the year following...but sporting a decent 3.22 ERA from the left-side. Still, he's expensive for a specialist. 
Shaw has the same contract structure as McGee, and is a shell of his Cleveland self (sound familiar? Cody Allen?) but is still durable, sporting a 4.47 ERA in 50 IP> 
It's unclear how available any of these arms are - or how good they'd be or what they'd cost - but all could theoretically help fill a role on the Angels staff for a few years. 
If Eppler can see hope in any one of them away from Coors Field - and maybe sees something in McGee or Shaw - the Halos could be able to help here.
The Rockies probably could benefit from a very minor roster shuffling, and would be thrilled to free up some salary. 
The Angels could be keep their prospect offering fairly light here, and take a Jim Johnson-esque gamble on a vet reliever, and add a cheap long-term SP arm to the rotation with past successes in their young careers.
 

Edited by totdprods
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the Rox could be an interesting trade partner.  Their outlay on relievers seemed ill-advised at the time and that has certainly played out worse case.  

They probably have a real challenging time working trades in that so much of the discussion is likely centered around probable performance outside of their home park vs. actual performance.  

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18 minutes ago, Dochalo said:

the Rox could be an interesting trade partner.  Their outlay on relievers seemed ill-advised at the time and that has certainly played out worse case.  

They probably have a real challenging time working trades in that so much of the discussion is likely centered around probable performance outside of their home park vs. actual performance.  

Colorado has tended to have interest in Angel pitching in the past too...Diaz, Chatwood, Almonte, sort of like how we pick up a ton of arms from Cincinnati (Ramirez, Brice, Wright)...
All of those SPs have had some degree of success already - some might not be meant to cut it at Colorado for the long-term, and I'm sure both COL/LAA have some insight on the data to help point them in those directions. 

They all feel like more of an Eppler move than Stroman, Boyd, Ray, Bumgarner...I don't see him wanting to part with much in the prospect front for those guys because they'll come with big cost due to their name, their track record, the demand..
I'm sure we have a reasonable little pool of prospects Eppler would be open to dealing from - Walsh, Ward, Thaiss, Rojas, Hermosillo all seem like they'd do well in Denver given it's similarities to SLC, and the position versatility between them helps too. 

Colorado hasn't gotten much from McMahon or Tapia at 2B and LF, and Murphy/Desmond aren't doing much at 1B. Hermosillo has the athleticism to play well in Colorado and he strikes me as the type of OF who could flourish there. 
And they might be amenable to some pitching from the Halos too, which the Angels might be open to parting with if they were getting a SP back with years of control. Madero has enough swing-and-miss stuff and a decent enough GB% rate, Yan as well.
Would like to keep both, but the Rockies arms have similar intrigue and a lot of control, and can help us now.

Taking on a reliever to facilitate the deal wouldn't be terrible - we really could use a steady vet in the pen. Even if they're not great, they'd fill the Johnson/Salas/6th inning role that blows it from time to time but their steadiness helps in some ways. 
At this point, if we want to compete, we simply need arms - so a roll of the dice on Shaw might not be too bad.
And Eppler could also turn around and flip that reliever down the line, eating some salary off it.

Edited by totdprods
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Jason Vargas
Mets might be ready to move on from Vargas since he's a vet on an expiring contract and been involved with some of their clubhouse drama. 
In 18 G/17 GS, Vargas has a 3.96 ERA, 1.25 WHIP, 4.66 FIP, 104 ERA+ in ~89 IP - all of which would basically be tops among Angels starters. 
Since opening the year with three awful games  - 14.21 ERA in 6.1 IP - Vargas has a 3.17 ERA in 15 starts, allowing three or fewer runs in 14 of those.

Anthony DeSclafini, Michael Lorenzen, Amir Garrett
Listing this trio because, during Eppler's tenure, he's seemed to place a lot of interest in Cincinnati arms - Brice, Wright, Ramirez - and they all come with control.
Cincinnati might be looking to restock the farm a bit after aggressively pursuing Gray, Kemp, Puig, Roark, and Wood. 
DeSclafini is the likeliest candidate as he's the only true SP here, and controlled only through '20 (much like Stroman, Ray, Bauer) which fits the Angels timeline.
In 98 innings, he has 105 K and only 27 walks, which is sure to catch Eppler's attention. 
Lorenzen, from Fullerton, has the local appeal and is also a two-way player which the Angels have some specialization in.
Originally a SP, he's probably best utilized now as a multi-inning RP/PH/OF - controlled through '21, he'd be a little costly.
In 47 G/52 IP, 16 BB, 53 K and a 3.44 ERA - only 12 PA this year, but slashed .290/.333/.710/1.043 in 34 PA last year with 4 HR.
Amir Garrett, controlled through '23, would by and far by the most expensive piece, as he's stepped into elite RP territory this year.
Through 45 games, 39 IP, the 6'5" lefty has a 1.85 ERA, 13.4 K/9 (58) and only allowed 27 hits and 3 walks. 
The Angels AAA bats - Walsh, Ward, Thaiss, Rojas, Hermosillo - are the likeliest pieces they'd like to trade, and their bats would play well in Cincy. 
A glut of A/A+ pitching could also be of interest as the Reds could use pitching prospects in volume, and some of the low-level, high-upside guys like Adams, Jackson, Knowles, Maitan, Rondon, Deveaux would go a long way to getting some higher ceiling back into their system, even with the bust risk of those prospects.

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Just now, Jay said:

Wow, Jason Vargas...

He's 36, making $8MM per year.

Just retire dude.

 

Yea, $8 million a year.  It’s one thing to have made $100’s of millions and another $100 million in endorsements and walk away from good money.  But when you are Jason Vargas, you’ve made probably $50-60 million in your career and someone is offering you $8 million, that is tough to walk away from.  

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Just now, Stradling said:

Yea, $8 million a year.  It’s one thing to have made $100’s of millions and another $100 million in endorsements and walk away from good money.  But when you are Jason Vargas, you’ve made probably $50-60 million in your career and someone is offering you $8 million, that is tough to walk away from.  

And he's pitching fairly well. Not a high bar to reach, but better than any Angel SP this year...

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9 minutes ago, Stradling said:

Yea, $8 million a year.  It’s one thing to have made $100’s of millions and another $100 million in endorsements and walk away from good money.  But when you are Jason Vargas, you’ve made probably $50-60 million in your career and someone is offering you $8 million, that is tough to walk away from.  

In before AO can post that he's a LB State Dirtbag...

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Those all seem like aiming too low. Granted, we need innings, but the Angels also need upside both now and in the future. Buying low on a formerly great starter or grabbing a bad contact seem like wagers that can pay off now in the way of innings, but if things break right, they help next year in the way of upside.

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10 minutes ago, Second Base said:

Those all seem like aiming too low. Granted, we need innings, but the Angels also need upside both now and in the future. Buying low on a formerly great starter or grabbing a bad contact seem like wagers that can pay off now in the way of innings, but if things break right, they help next year in the way of upside.

I still think Eppler's going to try and land someone like Ray, Stroman, Boyd, Richards, Smith, Bundy, Junis - I'll go ahead and include Syndergaard and Bauer - or another legitimate starter who grades out as an established #2-#4 SP with legit, perhaps untapped, #2 upside, who has control through at least next year. 

He'll offer up a combo of up to but not necessarily include all of: one of Ward/Thaiss, one or two A/A+ SPs, and one or two any of the Walsh/Rojas/Hermosillo/Lund/Jones/Rookie-ball OF guys. Brandon Marsh will be his last-resort. An option, but not one surrendered unless he has no choice.

I think he'll throw out a couple of those names and try to land a guy in hopes of boosting the '19 team while addressing a '20 need early, and without spending big salary, so he can chase FAs this winter.

Once he's exhausted all of those options, I thill think he will buy really, really cheaply, like those aim-low targets, just to give some hope to the 2019 team that they can will their way into a playoff spot. 
And I mean, something like Lyles and Liriano for Hermosillo and Cristopher Molina. Torii Hunter Jr. for Jason Vargas. Something that really doesn't hurt the MLB team/farm in the slightest but gives them at least a body to hold down a spot in the rotation, because it's barely functioning now.

Edited by totdprods
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They way I see it, the Angels need to get two starters for next year. The rotation looks like it will be this if everything breaks right:

1) Ohtani-- 20 Starts

2)BLANK

3) BLANK

4) Canning - 30 Starts

5) Heaney- 25 starts

6) Barria- 20 Starts

7) Suarez- 15 Starts

This puts things into perspective a bit; that's about 110 starts listed above -- meaning they need to go out and find 70-ish starts on the market. Even if you think Suarez and Barria are ready for more, there is still a ton of risk that Ohtani/Heaney/Canning don't come anywhere near 75 starts. It feels risky trusting someone like Martinez  to fill this roll.

IN my mind, Eppler has three approaches he can take.

1) Go get Stroman/Freeland/Baugardner/Syndergaard now and trust they can find an innings eater on the market.

2) Get their workhorse now (Ray/Roark/Bauer/Wheeler) and hope that they can sign Gerritt Cole.

3) Wait for the market to bring you two solid mid-tier starters and trust Ohtani to be your ace in the second half next year.

 

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6 minutes ago, ScruffytheJanitor said:

IN my mind, Eppler has three approaches he can take.

1) Go get Stroman/Freeland/Baugardner/Syndergaard now and trust they can find an innings eater on the market.

2) Get their workhorse now (Ray/Roark/Bauer/Wheeler) and hope that they can sign Gerritt Cole.

3) Wait for the market to bring you two solid mid-tier starters and trust Ohtani to be your ace in the second half next year.

Great summary. 

Given Eppler’s tendency to avoid going heavy in FA, #3 feels unlikely. I really think he’ll swing a trade this next week or early in winter to address one of the two SP needs, and then use the money we have to pursue the best arm they can land, be it Cole, Ryu, Wheeler, Bumgarner, or the next tier guys like Odorizzi, Gibson, Pineda, Wacha, Wood, etc. 

It would be tremendously risky and bold to count on Canning, Suarez, Barria, and Sandoval to deliver 15-30 starts a piece and have them all be effective and healthy. They should be lumped together and counted on to fill one or two rotation slots for 2020, and let them develop organically into more established roles for 2021+. 

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On 7/16/2019 at 8:15 AM, totdprods said:

Apparently, the Cardinals are willing to deal Carlos Martinez - and some of their younger outfielders. 
https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2019/07/cardinals-reportedly-open-to-trading-young-outfielders-carlos-martinez.html

Martinez is curious - they moved him to the pen this year, and he's been solid throughout his career. 
He's owed $11.7m this year, and in 2020 and 2021 - with a $17m team option in 2022 and $18m option in 2023 ($500k buyouts each year)

Martinez is quite expensive for a reliever - though not horribly so if he becomes a dominant relief arm, which isn't impossible, but there's also some hope he could return to the rotation. I haven't read much, but I'm assuming there's some long-term durability/health concerns.

I'm sure it'd take some extra pieces - but could a Calhoun for Martinez swap be realistic? The Angels get at worst an expensive reliever, at best a controlled-rotation arm for a reasonable rate, and open up room for Adell. 
The money is comparable. Calhoun gives St. Louis insurance if Ozuna walks this offseason (he's a FA) and Jose Martinez can't field worth a damn.

I'm sure it'd take an extra prospect or two from the Angels but might be worth a look - nor do I expect Calhoun to be the main attraction for St. Louis in a deal - but it seems like it would match up for both clubs needs.

I think he's worth it if he comes back to the rotation. Our bullpen is solid right now and I hope the only players we trade for would be starting pitchers. 

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25 minutes ago, angelsnationtalk said:

I think he's worth it if he comes back to the rotation. Our bullpen is solid right now and I hope the only players we trade for would be starting pitchers. 

Agreed - though it would be interesting if Eppler was looking at him and thinking he could be as elite as Osuna, Chapman, Miller, Vasquez, Hader, Davis, etc. with the right development, especially since our relief development  has been very strong in Eppler’s time. 

It would be a steep price to pay for a high-risk asset, both in money and prospects, but if Eppler felt there was a chance he could be that dominant with an adjustment they’re confident they can make, it would be a great way to acquire that elite closer without paying top price. 

Of course, I’d prefer a SP, but we’ve often said an elite closer isn’t needed until we were playoff ready, and that could come in ‘20 if they land Cole.

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50 minutes ago, totdprods said:

I still think Eppler's going to try and land someone like Ray, Stroman, Boyd, Richards, Smith, Bundy, Junis - I'll go ahead and include Syndergaard and Bauer - or another legitimate starter who grades out as an established #2-#4 SP with legit, perhaps untapped, #2 upside, who has control through at least next year. 

He'll offer up a combo of up to but not necessarily include all of: one of Ward/Thaiss, one or two A/A+ SPs, and one or two any of the Walsh/Rojas/Hermosillo/Lund/Jones/Rookie-ball OF guys. Brandon Marsh will be his last-resort. An option, but not one surrendered unless he has no choice.

I think he'll throw out a couple of those names and try to land a guy in hopes of boosting the '19 team while addressing a '20 need early, and without spending big salary, so he can chase FAs this winter.

Once he's exhausted all of those options, I thill think he will buy really, really cheaply, like those aim-low targets, just to give some hope to the 2019 team that they can will their way into a playoff spot. 
And I mean, something like Lyles and Liriano for Hermosillo and Cristopher Molina. Torii Hunter Jr. for Jason Vargas. Something that really doesn't hurt the MLB team/farm in the slightest but gives them at least a body to hold down a spot in the rotation, because it's barely functioning now.

If Eppler can get one of those pitchers listed for Ward, two A/A+ pitchers and two of Hermosillo, Jones or Lund then I'd be one happy fan. 

I'd love to keep Thaiss, Walsh and Rojas to see what they can really do at the major league level. 

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