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Dave Saltzer

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Posts posted by Dave Saltzer

  1. Definitely a good kid and a bright spot in our organization. So much of our talent is so young, like William, that our system will become much better as they mature. 

     

    You can see in the video that William has a lot more projectable power and should pick up a couple of MPHs on his FB. With improved control, he has the potential to be a great threat on both sides of the game. 

  2. 2 hours ago, Jeff Fletcher said:

    Yeah. They have considered it. I am not sure why it’s never happened. I agree it would be nice. 
     

    Its not like it would be that much cheaper though to just get sports. It’s pretty cheap now. 

    Yep. It's just a way to sell more subscriptions. Not that I don't like other writers at the OC Register, it's just, I'd definitely pay for your work. So, they should sell what people want to buy. Or, at least do a limited promo for just the baseball season and the occasional offseason articles that you do. 

     

    Anyways, keep up the good work this season! 

  3. In response to several questions:

     

    Where would they play? I believe Arizona is open for business and we have more than enough fields to handle that many players. We may need to put them up somewhere, but again, I did factor in a budget for doing that.

     

    Why so many players? Well, in order to really develop, they need not only drills, but in game experience. To gain that, they need to scrimmage, so, with that many players, they could sign and develop two teams of HS players and two teams of college players to scrimmage and get in-game experience. That would be an extreme number, because they could mix in the Minor Leaguers drafted in the last year or two to continue to develop them. Since not all clubs are going to do this, we would need enough players to have enough for full scrimmages to give as much in-game like experience as we can.

     

    What budget has been cut? The scouts and player development people who have been let go. As someone else pointed out, the whole point of doing this is to have the scouts who have the relationships to get players to sign. The money ($20l) won't be enough to get players to sign necessarily. But, the relationships and the commitment to develop the players this year would go a LONG way to convincing plenty of players to sign. As pointed out, there will be a logjam of players next year, making the draft class much larger (and driving down the potential for a high bonus), so having the connections and the commitment to develop this summer, we could probably convince more players to sign with us. 

     

    While I know that won't happen, it's what I would do if I were running the team.

  4. Here's the thing. If Arte hadn't cut the scouting budget, and instead went big on it, we would be in a much better position to identify those who would sign and would bring value. And, if he he went big on committing to pay and develop minor leaguers this summer, he would be in a better position to attract and sign those players.

     

    I know that we aren't going to do this, and that he did cut the budget, and I think that we will pay a big price for that down the road. There is talent and opportunity here, and I see us missing out on it. 

  5. Thanks ALF. I disagree. I think many players who might go in the later rounds might realize that they will get squeezed over the next few years, and if we committed to not just drafting, but then developing them, might take that opportunity. Most teams won't do much to develop their players until the fall at best. That's going to leave a lot of players falling behind. It's not just about signing the players, it's the commitment to finding a state that is open and developing our players that is what would make the difference. We will need to sign plenty of players to develop those who will make it, but, if we did, that would pay dividends for years to come.

     

    I know that we aren't going to do this, and, I find that rather frustrating as a fan. 

  6. 2 hours ago, Chuckster70 said:

    True. 

    But let me ask this a different way?

    If the Angels were to select a position player in this draft over a pitcher, which one would you be happy with them selecting?

    Yes, I would be rather unhappy about it. This is a pitching heavy draft, and there are and will be plenty of good arms to draft this year. Not that you draft for need, but, I think the chances of a pitcher developing into a better player than a position player, after missing this entire season, and possibly the Minor League season, are greater than what you can get with a position player at our slot. I think the possibility to sign better hitting after the draft is over is greater than to sign pitching. I would love to get Meyer, Detmer, Crotchet, etc. 

  7. 7 minutes ago, Bronson said:

    Hmmmm very interesting. Don’t see how you get a front end arm without giving up Adell or gutting the farm.

    It's possible that some of our prospects, that other clubs did not value as highly, step it up and prove themselves worthy of a higher value. Or, they may become more expendable if others step it up in our organization. Our surplus of Of prospects could have plenty of value. 

  8. 1 hour ago, ettin said:

    So let us HYPOTHETICALLY discuss a potential Red Sox/Angels trade based on David Price and Mookie Betts to understand how likely or unlikely it would be and the impact for the Angels.

    First of all let's discuss the elephant in the room which is team payroll. Currently we sit at about $190M in both 2020 Club Payroll and Actual Club Payroll (AAV). It is my speculative opinion that Moreno may have splurged for both Gerrit Cole and Anthony Rendon and exceeded the CBT threshold, if the former had not slipped away. Those two clearly represent Moreno's "right player" in terms of the potential outlay of payroll dollars. Mookie Betts is certainly a "right player" in every sense of the term. David Price was a "right player" at one point but it is debatable if he still is now and he carries such a large contract, relative to his recent performance history, that he carries negative "surplus" value, despite excellent peripherals in 2019.

    There is a real probability that the Red Sox have had great difficulty trying to find a taker for Price without eating a lot of his contract and, realizing they are not getting the interest they want and need due to their desire to get below the CBT threshold, they are now exploring the packaging option of David and Mookie together. This may (or may not) represent an opportunity for another team to take advantage of the Red Sox' Luxury Tax situation.

    Mookie is in his final year of arbitration control and will make $27M in 2020. David Price has three years of team control at $32M per season for a total of $96M. Using rudimentary surplus value projections you get the following:

    David Price (2.6 WAR, 2.35 WAR, and 1.85 WAR from 2020-2022): -$30M

    Mookie Betts (6.75 WAR for 2020): $45M (really the number is about $35M but you can make a case of performance scarcity here that increases his value)

    Remember that these surplus values include their total salaries, it represents their "extra" value beyond what they are owed.

    So, packaged together, they are only worth about $15M give or take (again these are really rough estimates). That is the equivalent value of a high quality prospect (think #3-#10 on most teams prospect lists), which, for the Angels, is someone like one of Jordyn Adams, Jose Soriano, Jeremiah Jackson, or Chris Rodriguez for example. For reference, Jo Adell, a Top 5 prospect, is worth about $60M-$70M and Brandon Marsh, recently ranked #43, is probably worth close to $40M.

    The Red Sox have needs in the back-end of their rotation (replacing Rick Porcello), 2B (they signed Peraza but he is not a solution and Pedroia may be out for good), OF, bullpen, and perhaps 1B. They have supposedly asked for another teams Top 2 prospects, which, when looking at the above combined value is a pretty ridiculous ask if they are not throwing in a lot of money.

    So what are the scenarios here?:

    1) The Red Sox want to remove all of Price's and Betts' salaries from their books, thus they will only get back approximately $15M in return value.

    2) The Red Sox want to get a bit more out of the deal so they offer to pick up a total of $15M of Price's contract, say $5M per season over the remaining three years of his contract, so they can potentially extract about $30M in return value.

    3) The Red Sox want to get a more substantial prospect to headline the deal and are willing to eat between $20M-$50M of Price's contract to potentially extract approximately $35M-$65M in return value.

    4) The Red Sox are dead serious about getting an organization's Top 2 prospects and are willing to possibly pick upward of $40M-$80M of Price's and/or Betts contracts to possibly pull down $55M-$95M in return value.

    To be honest, these scenarios will all be different based on the team that Boston wants to trade with so we will stay focused on a HYPOTHETICAL Angels trade, working in reverse order of the scenarios:

    4) The Top 2 prospects scenario will not work for the Angels. Giving up both Adell and Marsh is preposterous and will not happen. Acquiring one year of Mookie and three years of Price only makes sense if Adell or Marsh is still in our farm system because we will have to replace Betts once he is gone, unless he signs an extension as part of the trade which seems really remote based on Mookie's own comments. Additionally this may not solve their payroll issues to Boston's satisfaction, creating an inability to create enough payroll space to make other moves.

    3) In this scenario the Red Sox could end up asking for Adell by himself (which I think the Angels would 100% refute) but more likely they ask for Brandon Marsh as the centerpiece and then add on a player like Jose Suarez, Luis Rengifo or Matt Thaiss plus a near or actual MLB-ready bullpen piece. They would still have to pick up a large portion of Price's (or maybe some of Betts) salary, something on the order of $40M-$50M. However, this may still be too much money for the Red Sox to retain in regard to their payroll issues. For the Angels they keep Jo Adell in this scenario and keep him down on the farm for the season unless they experience an injury at the Major League level (high quality depth) and can either trade Betts at the deadline or get a compensation pick at the end of the year when they make Mookie a Qualifying Offer which he will almost certainly turn down. Adell with an extra season of experience in the Minors could take over in 2021 instead.

    2) To me, if an actual trade went down, this would be the more likely scenario for both sides. The Red Sox want a lot for Mookie but combining him with Price drags their combined value and potential return down a lot. By picking up something on the order of $15M give or take, they could pick up a top prospect from the Angels, say a Jordyn Adams type, plus another piece like Suarez, Rengifo, or Thaiss for example. The money they save will be tremendous (over $100M) and give them a lot more flexibility for 2020. For the Angels they KEEP both Adell and Marsh while trading off from their depth surplus. This scenario may not be satisfactory for the Red Sox to be honest but they are in a position where they really want to dive below the CBT threshold and probably don't have many options available to them.

    1) This scenario is less likely because the Red Sox don't need to remove all of Price's and Betts salaries from their books and only get one #3-#10 type prospect back in return. They too have some leverage in any trade discussion because they only need to eliminate about $40M-$60M total to have operational payroll room for 2020. For the Angels this might be a great scenario because they only give up, likely, one or two prospects, maximum, although they will carry a lot of payroll on their books, which would be the downside for the next three seasons as seen below for reference:

    Total Club Payroll for 2020-2022 with Price and Betts Full Contracts:

    Capture.PNG

    Total Actual Club Payroll (AAV) for 2020-2022 with Price and Betts Full Contracts:

    Capture.PNG

    As you can see, taking on Price's and Betts' full contracts would put us over the CBT threshold significantly for 2020 and we would be borderline in 2021, tying up financial flexibility for the next two years, but giving the team a very high quality player (Betts) for 2020 and an aging, but still useful, starter for the next three years. Price's only injury, as far as I can tell, has been this wrist issue (cyst surgery), so in terms of health it is hard to characterize David as an injury risk and he still had really good peripherals in 2019 (21% K-BB% which is strong for a starter). From a risk perspective having Mookie not only increases the odds of the Angels making the playoffs (along with Price in the rotation) but it allows Adell to get more seasoning in the Minors and will likely make him a more finished product to start 2021.

    There are only a small group of teams in the Majors that will take on this type of money, giving a large market team like the Angels an opportunity to use their financial muscle to leverage Boston's need into a value proposition for the Halos, potentially.

    Make no mistake though, if the Angels do this, they are all-in for the next three seasons and will have poor financial flexibility which will be counterproductive during the off-season and at the trade deadlines. On the flip side they will have retained most, if not all, of their farm system depth, creating a really nice surplus of prospects that could be used to supplement the Major League roster or used as currency in trade.

    For me personally, in this HYPOTHETICAL scenario, if Moreno has the balls to do this, spending-wise, and Eppler feels enough pressure regarding his job to make this leap it may be a gamble worth taking as you are getting an above average quality starter and you are getting a superstar right fielder in his prime right now that could make a 2020 playoff run a much likelier reality than it already is. For me it would have to be in that Scenario #2 or maybe #3 realm, although I like Marsh a lot and would hate to lose him. The thing that makes me hesitate is the loss of flexibility in payroll but if you are adding 7+ wins to the 2020 season that could be a real difference maker and, if you have the Red Sox eat more of the money from 2021, rather than 2020, the Angels could only be over the CBT threshold for the 2020 season, potentially.

    What would you do?

    I always enjoy reading your detailed analysis. You have really grown in the depth of evidence and thought in your approaches.

     

    In no way would I trade Adell or Marsh. 

     

    I do, however, see a possible HYPOTHETICAL trade scenario where Boston could unload both Price and Betts, but even then, I wouldn't see them doing it. In order to get the deal done, Boston would have to engineer a 3-way trade with two teams that each need a piece and had a complementing piece to trade back to the other team to offer insurance on the deal. Here is one possible scenario that could work. The Angels need pitching and have a young OF prospect to trade (Adams). The Dodgers are in a win-now mode (with a definite chip on their shoulder for the past few seasons thanks to the Trashtos). The Dodgers have young pitching in the minors. So, imagine if the Angels trade Barria to the Red Sox and get back Price + $20 million ($10 million in years 1 and 2 remaining of Price's deal) to offset the cost. The Dodgers trade Joc Pederson to the Red Sox and receive back Betts. The Angels trade Adams to the Dodgers to provide OF insurance to them if Betts leaves as a FA and the Dodgers trade Josiah Gray to the Angels and $10 million in year 3 of Price's deal.

     

    Why this would work is that the Angels get a young future starter who could be ready in a year in case Price does not return to form. The Dodgers get back an OF who could be ready within 2 years in case Betts walks. The Dodgers would get the draft pick, which is quite valuable, and the more valuable of the two players (Betts) hence they are kicking in the remaining cash to get Price's contract down to a more realistic value for the Angels. The Red Sox get what they want--salary relief and something better for Betts than just a draft pick. They get an OF and a pitcher back to fill those spots. 

     

    Again, I'm not advocating this deal, and I don't see it as likely, but that's about the only way I could see a deal like this working. I don't see the Red Sox going for this deal, but, if they truly want out, that's how I'd see them having to structure the deal. 

  9. 3 hours ago, ettin said:

    Thanks @Dochalo !

    I thought about your first sentence quite a bit writing this up and based on the fact that the back-end of our bullpen (Robles and Buttrey) appears to be okay combined with the fact that they should, as a group, throw less innings I feel comfortable that we can, at the minimum, reproduce our middle-of-the-pack performance. The real wildcards are Bedrosian, Middleton, Anderson, and Cole, all of which have varying levels of concern and/or room for potential improvement/regression. If Cam produces at the same level and at least two of Keynan, Justin, and Taylor take some modest step forward I think our bullpen becomes a Top 10 relief staff. Also if Eppler finds another hurler off the scrap heap and/or signs or trades for a reliever that would help bridge the gap too.

    I purposely skipped over the Minor League depth and maintained focus on the 40-man roster but you are correct, any one of those guys down on the farm could also step up and bridge the gap too. Ramirez (Neil) is a veteran and I liked that Garrett Williams pick-up too. Clark, Hofacket ( @Dave Saltzer 's favorite!), and Warren could all step into the fire and succeed. Actually Hector Yan is someone I'd like to see step up in the 2nd half too.

    Jake Jewell is my personal favorite, he will excel in the Angels infield defensive environment with Rendon and Simmons on the left side of the infield. But the guys with options are a crap shoot, it will depend on what the front office wants and needs and, as you said, Jewell could start in the Minors.

    Actually, I think that the bullpen will he slightly above average, but will be a rollercoaster ride throughout the season. Long term, I see it as more of an internal strength as we move several of the younger arms from starting roles to the bullpen. I can easily see several guys moving to the pen and doing much better. But, since they are young, there will be lumps along the way. Hofsckrt will get some time riding the Salt Lake express, but, we have better arms long term. 

  10. As always, a good writeup and analysis @ettin. My only comments concern the bullpen. Yes, relief pitching is volatile, and yes, the Angels have been somewhat successful so far without spending outlandishly on the bullpen. But, that doesn't mean that better relievers (and more expensive relievers) wouldn't do better. It's just that with our current team construct, and budget limits, we have determined that it is an area where we will have some savings to field better players (or more expensive players) in other positions. I don't want fans to think that the Angels wouldn't spend on the bullpen if they had the arms to do so (imagine a K-Rod or Harvey in their prime). We would spend to keep them and keep a stronger bullpen. That's just not our current team's construct.

     

    At the same time, because bullpen arms are volatile, this is where investing in scouting and working to get better deals with players makes a huge difference. Having that extra million to sign a reliever who has an incredible year can be so beneficial. Having the scouts to identify and target those arms is critical. For so many teams, it's the little deals for an unheralded bullpen piece that has a big impact on the season. That weighs against handing out money like candy to all players. The extra million or two spent on a bad deal often hampers a team from making what could be the right deal for a low level piece.

  11. Thanks for writing this. I always look forward to reading your series and your analysis!

     

    My general take is that we need two pitchers and another bat. I expect a major FA pitcher signed, most likely a trade, and a bat, preferably a left-handed one, would be nice. Adding another catcher would be a luxury, and I won't be surprised if a reunion with Maldonado happens. 

     

    Looking forward to read g your takes. 

  12. 3 hours ago, Spirit said:

    This is just a great example of the kind of thing that sets AngelsWin apart.  When we do things like this, not only is it good for the individual prospect player and the organization as a whole, but also for the family.  Obviously in this case, getting to hear Aaron's voice is something the family will cherish forever.

    As Chuck mentioned, he shared the interview with Jessica Trout.  I won't post her response, as it was done in a private message format, but I'll just say she was incredibly grateful. 

     

     

    Thank you very much! 

     

    In my opinion, the best reporters are the ones who get out of the way of the story and don't try to make the story fit their agenda or idea. They just provide a vehicle for the the story to tell itself and at times, help move it along by interjecting a question or two. I try to do that as much as I can.

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