Monday, October 3, 2011

How The Giants Can Improve With Only A $125M Payroll for 2012.

Updating the SF Giants 2012 lineup.

I’ve been learning some Angels’ fans opinions, and feel pretty confident we could get Erick Aybar.  The Angels highest priorities seem to be: a third baseman, #4 starter, and a closer.  They are VERY close to seriously contending in the AL.

I think Anaheim would really like to clear a big portion of Wells’ contract from their books so they could potentially make a run for Fielder or Pujols (if 1B Trumbo can move to the hot corner) and/or Reyes (if SS Aybar is gone).  Former GM Reagins made an offer to the Mets at the trade deadline: Aybar for Reyes ‘straight up.’   It was a nice ‘try’, in case the Mets absolutely had to trim expenses in 2011.  Plus, the Angels have lots of talented middle infielders and outfielders in their system...

I’ve talked enough times about how the Angels could use a LHP starter, and how Jonathan Sanchez would fit that role perfectly.  And consider he’s still under arbitration, he’ll cost about $6M for 2012.  That is an unbelievable deal if you compare him to CJ Wilson, for example.

It is also worth noting, the Angels would prefer a closer for a short and flexible term.

I doubt LAA can sign a top free agent closer (like: Papelbon, Madson, or Bell) to less than a 3-year contract.  Don’t forget they’ll fetch full market-value, maybe $10-14M per year, while Wilson is $8.5M for 2012.  And the Halos expect Jordan Walden to be groomed as their closer.  But, his 10 blown saves this year just don’t cut it.  Walden should be a solid set-up man in their bullpen to start 2012.

So, Wilson is just so ideal from their perspective.  If Walden is ready for 2013, Wilson can likely be traded before his arb-4 season.  Worst case-scenario, they don’t offer arbitration, and simply non-tender him (which would probably be dumb).  If the Angels hold onto him and likely pay him $10-12M for 2013, they can trade him at the deadline, or expect draft picks in return for him leaving as a UFA.  No other top closer allows that kind of flexibility, which works perfectly for Anaheim.  Folks (hey! Giants: Sabean), that is called ‘trade leverage.’

There is no realistic way the Angels can sign both a solid #4 starter and a premier closer for $14.5 million.  But that is exactly what Dirty and B-Weezy would be for the Halos.  For theGiants, there ain't a lot of shortstop options out there, nor lead-off hitters.  I still (very stubbornly, I admit) maintain, this trade here WORKS.

The Angels also have platoon problems, both on the infield and outfield.  They have FIVE outfielders worth playing: Bourjos, Hunter, Trout, Wells, and Moore (probably in that order).  It would be unlikely Trout (or Wells) would DH, since they somehow let Abreu’s $9M option vest this year.  They also have players like Kendrick (mostly 2B) and Morales (1B) also trying to find playing time.  I won’t assume Morales is healed from his broken leg; but he, young Trumbo, and Abreu are likely to tri-toon 1B and DH unless something is done.

They also kinda have another platoon on the left side of the infield
Callaspo (2B/3B mostly) and Izturis (2B/SS/3B) are splitting most of the playing time at 3B, but they’d love a power 3B like Longoria, Wright, or Zimmerman.  Don’t worry, Pablo ain’t leaving.  Bank on it.  Shipping Aybar could allow Izzy to play shortstop until Segura is ready.  It could allow them to trade some combo of Callaspo, Kendrick, and Moore for a 3B.  Maybe swap Bourjos instead of Moore, for a ‘big name’ third baseman.  This offseason, there will be a high demand for 2B upgrades all around MLB, so they could have a lot of trade offers for Kendrick.  Then Trout would run CF.

They got log jams (like we do at 1B and LF).  Wells is blocking Trout very similar to how Huff is blocking Belt (expensive, underperforming, same position). 

Imagine if a team offered a top SS/lead-off for Brandon Belt?
Like Detroit’s Jhonny Peralta or Cleveland’s Asdrubal Cabrera.  What if they wanted Zito too and would eat $30M of his contract to have him?  That’s similar to us offering Wilson, wanting Aybar, and taking Wells to clinch the deal.

Seems like a no-brainer when put that way, huh?

Moving Aybar and Wells helps clear salary so Anaheim can bid on Fielder and/or Reyes.  It would help Trout start.  They could shift or trade to fill their infield.  Or get Jose Reyes.

I’d start by demanding a ‘trade window’ to make sure we can sign Aybar to a 5-year ($52.5M?) or 6-year ($62.5M?) contract, I wouldn’t trade for one year of Aybar and then having him leave to free agency.

Let the negotiations begin…

- Zito for Aybar.  We send $32M cash to Anaheim to offset the $46M.
- 2nd offer:  Zito for Aybar, send $38M cash.
I doubt Anaheim wants the large contract of Zito, and he’s not a #4 starter.  If the Halos add a large acquisition (Reyes or Fielder, for instance), Zito, Wells, Abreu, and Hunter’s contracts will push the Angels up towards or over the Luxury Tax threshold- even if some cash is paid by SF.
- 3rd offer: Brian Wilson for Aybar & one of these RHP pitching prospects:
Garrett Richards, Steve Geltz, or Daniel Tillman
- 4th offer: Wilson for Aybar and OF Jeremy Moore.
- 5th offer: Wilson for Aybar, one of the RHP prospects, Vernon Wells, and $37.5M cash to offset the $63M contract.
- 6th offer: Wilson for Aybar, one of the RHP prospects, Vernon Wells, and $31.5M cash.
- 7th offer: Wilson for Aybar, Vernon Wells, and $37.5M cash.
- 8th offer: Wilson for Aybar, Vernon Wells, $31.5M cash, and OF Jeremy Moore.
- 9th offer: Wilson AND Jonathan Sanchez for: Aybar and Peter Bourjos
- 10th offer: Wilson AND Jonathan Sanchez for:
Aybar, Bourjos, Wells, $37.5M cash, and one of the RHP prospects.
- 11th offer: Wilson AND Jonathan Sanchez for:
Aybar, Bourjos, Wells, $31.5M cash, and one of the RHP prospects.
- 12th offer: Wilson AND Jonathan Sanchez for:
Aybar, Bourjos, Wells, $31.5M cash, and either Maicer Izturis or Alberto Callaspo.

I feel CERTAIN that a deal can be made with Anaheim.
The question is which offer does Anaheim accept?

Ideally, I hope we get:
the 3rd offer: Brian Wilson for Aybar & one RHP prospect or 
the 9th offer: Wilson & Jonathan Sanchez for Aybar and Peter Bourjos.

Maybe I’d prefer Richards as the RHP, since I know we’ll need a 5th starter right away.  By 2014 I project we’ll need a 4th and 5th starter (if Vogelsong signs a 2-year deal).  Bourjos would be great in CF until Brown is ready, then we can re-assess who takes CF long-term.

If we get Aybar and Bourjos in offer #9, we save heaps with young Bourjos.  No expensive OF bat like Cuddyer, Swisher, or Melky Cabrera.  This is the ONLY way I see a serious upgrade and a payroll of $125 million for 2012.  I'm stubbornly holding that we need to sign Ramon Hernandez for a 2-year deal.  Maybe try Edgar Gonzalez as the IF/UT.  We signed him last spring.  But traded for guys like Hall and Kepp.  WTF?  He's Adrian's bro.  Played 2B and 3B mostly.  Yes, Torres.  Don't care what he bats.  We'd have offense.  I want his defense and pinch running.  He's cheap.  And he might just turn it back around if given a chance, but with less pressure on him (not batting leadoff).

IT might be worth mentioning that both Callaspo and Izturis are switch-hitters. And let's look at the 2011 WAR's of these two Angels, and Giants "utility" players:

  1. Alberto Callaspo: 4.5 WAR, .288 avg/.366 OBP
  2. Maicer Izturis: 3.3 WAR, .276/.334
  1. Freddy Sanchez: 1.1 WAR, .289/.332
  2. Mark DeRosa: -0.2 WAR, .279/.351
  3. Miguel Tejada: 1.0 WAR, .239/.270
  4. Mike Fontenot: 0.8 WAR, .227/.304
  5. Jeff Keppinger: -0.6 WAR, .255/.285
  6. Orlando Cabrera: -0.4 WAR,  .222/.241
  7. Emmanuel Burriss: -0.1 WAR, .204/.253
  8. Bill Hall: -0.7 WAR, .158/.220

Check out my worksheet for $125M.


Melky Cabrera: KC Royals GM Dayton Moore has publicly stated he’d consider trading Cabrera for a #3 starter who is nearly MLB ready.  A straight-up trade of Melky Cabrera for Jonathan Sanchez?  Love it.  If we don’t do a massive trade including Wilson & Sanchey with the Angels, we should get this deal done.  Like I’ve said, add someone like Chris Dominguez, Ehire Adrianza  Charlie Culberson, or Franisco Peguero if we have to.  Maybe just Emmanuel Burriss would clinch it, I dunno.  We got ourselves a #4 or #5 switch-hitter to protect Sandoval/Posey, CF for 2102, and ranging corner outfielder as soon as Gary Brown takes CF.

If none of things can happen, well…  Try trading Jonathan Sanchez and Nate Schierholtz (?) to Baltimore for Adam Jones?  Or Wilson for Jones?  We can still try Zito to Seattle for Figgins.  Or we simply ‘eat’ Zito’s $46M.  Or we try starting him.

I’ll be revisiting my stance on Jose Reyes in case we can’t land a shortstop.  Hmmmm.


No comments:

Post a Comment