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2016 MLB thread. THE CUBS HAVE BROKEN THE CURSE! Chicago Cubs are your 2016 World Series champions. - Page 605

post #18121 of 77570
Thread Starter 
It would be JUST like the Mets to give up the little bit of depth they have for Braun.
post #18122 of 77570
waiting on Jocketty to give Chris Carpenter a 2 year deal.
post #18123 of 77570
Breaking News: Prince for Kinsler. Awaiting physical.
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post #18124 of 77570
surprised prince is on the way out.
post #18125 of 77570
Unblocks Profar.

Spacious Comerica to Arlington. Not J. Upton or Giancarlo.

Must be more to it if Daniels is absorbing his albatross contract.
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post #18126 of 77570
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChampCruThik View Post

Breaking News: Prince for Kinsler. Awaiting physical.

roll.gif

that sucks for texas laugh.gif

that's my initial thought, at least *shrugs*
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post #18127 of 77570
Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnnyRedStorm View Post

surprised prince is on the way out.

I'm not.
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post #18128 of 77570
Prince is going to rake at RBiA.
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post #18129 of 77570
Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnnyRedStorm View Post

surprised prince is on the way out.

not sure if srs...
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post #18130 of 77570
Quote:
Originally Posted by JordanHead2 View Post

Prince is going to rake at RBiA.

why? do ground balls to second magically jump over the fence there? for texas' sake, hopefully in big games they do
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post #18131 of 77570
laugh.gif
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post #18132 of 77570
Prince is .202 in the postseason. Detroit rids the bad, long contract. Allows them to sign Scherzer long term.

Texas gets a big bat to replace Nap from a year past and potentially Nellie. Frees Profar to pair with Andrus.
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post #18133 of 77570
Thread Starter 
I actually like it for both teams.

Biggest part of this IMO, stops this idiotic Castellanos experiments in the OF. Move Miggy back over to 1B and open the season with Nick at 3B.

Long shot...but this could open up Texas for Cano...Profar to TB.
post #18134 of 77570
What makes you say/think that, Pro?
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post #18135 of 77570
David Price I'm assuming.
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post #18136 of 77570
The Tigers being willing to be move a player of Fielder's status for Kinsler tells you all you need to know.
post #18137 of 77570
Thread Starter 
Which part, Profar?

IDK, just a hunch. Yep, for Price. It seems to work out perfectly for Texas if they're going for it all. Maybe makes them slightly left oriented but Fielder/Cano hit lefties very well for LHH.
post #18138 of 77570
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChampCruThik View Post

Breaking News: Prince for Kinsler. Awaiting Physical.

Didn't see this coming... What do you guys think?
post #18139 of 77570
Random trade is random, but it does make sense for both. I think Tigers benefit more though.
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post #18140 of 77570
Holy **** 214 million??
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post #18141 of 77570
Thread Starter 
Well...it's only $168 left laugh.gif
post #18142 of 77570

Good move for the Tigers, not to forget that Prince choked throughout the entire ALCS.

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post #18143 of 77570
Meh. Fielder was down last year but Kinsler is always hurt and has declined a bit as well..

Feel like there's still plenty of things under the Rangers sleeve.

If the contract doesn't hinder other plans, then it's a win for Texas. Gotta let it play out.
post #18144 of 77570
i wasn't a fan of ian's defense the last two seasons, but will truly miss his at bats. i wish him luck up in michigan.
"what ch'all know 'bout dem Texas boys!?!"
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post #18145 of 77570
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChampCruThik View Post

Prince is .202 in the postseason. Detroit rids the bad, long contract. Allows them to sign Scherzer long term.

Texas gets a big bat to replace Nap from a year past and potentially Nellie. Frees Profar to pair with Andrus.
Good point about Scherzer's payday, didn't think about that. Nice trade for both teams. Prince will rebound and Kinsler is solid.
post #18146 of 77570
They just said on local news that Detroit is sending Texas $30 million? That helps.
post #18147 of 77570
Thread Starter 
I don't think the contract is gonna hurt em, Dirk. That TV money will keep them flush for a while.

A lot of folks don't initially like this for Texas. They lost an expendable asset and gained a potential big bounce back candidate who gives them the middle of the order power they've been looking for.
post #18148 of 77570
If the money coming to Texas is correct, over the next four years Prince costs about $4M more than Kinsler... He's worth that pretty easily if he rebounds even a little, I would think.
post #18149 of 77570
Thread Starter 
He has to. If he can't hit for power in Arlington as a lefty then IDK what you do with him.

Detroit and Texas pull off a challenge trade.
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
This is a classic challenge trade, my position player for your position player, both guys with huge contracts but who are also coming off disappointing years -- or in Ian Kinsler's case, two disappointing years. In the pending deal that sends Kinsler to the Tigers and Prince Fielder plus $30 million to the Rangers, Texas gets the better end of the trade in baseball terms, I think, but that assumes that Fielder's miserable 2013 was more about bad luck and personal troubles than a sudden, early collapse of his skills at age 29. And there's more to the deal than just the immediate on-field impact.

Fielder's major problems prior to 2013 were his “defense” and his platoon splits. The Rangers have the luxury of a free DH spot, and making Fielder a Fielder in name only makes him a more productive player because he's no longer giving back 10 runs or more a year on defense. (American League first basemen have outhit DHs two years running, so moving to DH won't hurt his WAR by raising the replacement level to which he's compared.) He's been worse against lefties for most of his career, although rarely bad enough that you'd want to sit him against lefties; it's more of a long-term concern that his skills against southpaws will erode first and he'll become a part-time player before the contract is up.

In 2013, however, Fielder's timing seemed to be off all year, as he was less effective against fastballs but with no discernible pattern -- he actually hit slightly more line drives against them and slightly fewer popups than in his very successful 2012 season, and was better on fastballs on the inner half (all data via Bloomberg). That says to me that he's not suffering from a serious loss of bat speed that would bode poorly for the remaining aeon of his contract. He had a similarly down year in 2008 and bounced back the following season, so whether it was bad luck or something else, he seems like a good candidate for a rebound. Moving to a ballpark that's good for left-handed power hitters won't hurt either.
[+] EnlargeMike Trout
Jonathan Moore/Getty Images
Ian Kinsler fills a void for the Tigers in the infield, and helps creates flexibility with the payroll.

If the Rangers move Prince to DH, as they should, they can roll with Mitch Moreland at first base, as the market doesn't offer them an ideal upgrade at the position, and they get to play top prospect Jurickson Profar every day at second base or perhaps at shortstop. Profar was the No. 1 prospect in baseball coming into 2013 and showed flashes of that ability in the majors, although his playing time was inconsistent and he ended up playing four positions over the course of the season. He has a very advanced approach for his age and surprising pop for a player who's not that physical, boasting strong hands and good bat speed from both sides of the plate. He could be a plus-plus defender at short, but with Elvis Andrus in the house and under contract for forever and a day, Profar may end up at second base long term, where he'll also be a big defensive asset but has to learn to stay out of harm's way on the double play. This trade and its ripple effect could easily result in a four- to six-win upgrade for the Rangers this year over what they would have had with Kinsler at second and Profar in another 400 at-bat super-utility role.

Compared to Fielder, Kinsler is showing greater signs of decline, with two disappointing offensive years as his legs have lost strength and his power has evaporated. After two 30-homer seasons in three years (2009, 2011), he's hit 32 total in the past two seasons in a good ballpark for power bats. His defense at second base improved with effort in his late 20s but has started to regress with his legs, and it's fair to worry that in a year or two his range will make him a liability at the position. He does fill a critical hole for the Tigers at second base in the short term, probably three wins above any internal options they had for the position, but their biggest gain in the deal is financial -- they save $76 million, which they can put toward retaining Max Scherzer or filling other needs. From a baseball perspective, however, I'd rather roll the dice on Fielder than Kinsler -- and with multiple sources indicating to me that the Rangers had shopped Kinsler but found no takers, it seems they had little choice.

Perhaps a bigger part of Detroit's thinking here is the Tigers can finally move Miguel Cabrera off third base, where he was among the worst defensive players in baseball at any position (18 runs below average per B-R, 17 below per Fangraphs/UZR) in 2013. Sliding him to first or to DH, with Victor Martinez playing the other position in that pair, also opens up the possibility of a return of top prospect Nick Castellanos to third base, a position where he'd shown promise but still needed a lot of work when he was moved to the outfield in the middle of 2012.

Castellanos is a high-end hitting prospect with high batting average potential and 25-30 homer power down the line. The Tigers have pushed him aggressively, running him through all four full-season levels in three years, but he now has a full season in Triple-A under his belt before he turns 22 and even raised his walk rate and cut his strikeout rate despite the multi-level jump. In right field he's an above-average regular, but if he can handle third base he could end up a star. Their free-agent alternatives at the position aren't great other than the dearly departed Jhonny Peralta, so I'm hopeful they'll at least consider giving Castellanos a shot.
Miguel Cabrera
Stan Grossfeld/The Boston Globe/Getty Images
His effort notwithstanding, a move to a first base platoon role will be good for Miguel Cabrera.

The key variable here is the money involved, as Fielder is owed $168 million over the next seven years, while Kinsler is owed a minimum of $62 million over four years (including an option buyout), not including the $30 million the Tigers will send to Texas to cover part of Prince's deal. Even assuming that the Rangers, who have a huge new revenue stream from their local television deal, can take on Fielder's money without impacting their ability to effectively fill out their roster, the risk that Fielder's deal becomes an immovable object before it's over is large, while Kinsler doesn't seem to be headed for anything worse than overpaid bench-guy status. You can live with $12 million for a 1-2 WAR extra player, but if Fielder's 2013 season is an indication of early decline, or if his mortal coil keeps getting tighter about the midsection, the Rangers could be looking at about $20 million a year for a player who isn't worth the roster spot.

Could the Rangers have done something better with the money they're handing to Fielder? I don't think so, although the question is a fair one. This winter's free agent market doesn't offer the Rangers the elite starter they need to pitch behind Yu Darvish, and the two position players who fit the Rangers' needs the best, Jacoby Ellsbury and Brian McCann, also carry risks. There's a performance risk for Ellsbury and a durability risk for McCann as a catcher. This move makes their club better and also rids them of Kinsler's contract and headaches from his disinclination to move off second base.

The Tigers, meanwhile, have a windfall on their hands to use to retain Scherzer or go make another splash in free agency if they find a potential fit. Shin-Soo Choo would look awfully nice in right field (sliding Torii Hunter to left) and atop their lineup, or they could try to pry Aramis Ramirez or Chase Headley loose from their current clubs. Detroit may be a bit worse off on the field for this deal in the short term, but I doubt this is their final move of the winter given how much money they just saved.
post #18150 of 77570
Thread Starter 
One more Detroit oriented:

Tigers Exchange Albatross For Good Player, Get Even Better.
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
(I decided to break this deal down in two separate posts, because there are too many angles to fit it all into one. Texas fans, we’ll talk about this deal from the Rangers perspective in a separate article.)

The Detroit Tigers were a very good baseball team, but with Omar Infante heading for free agency and too much money committed to other players to keep him around, they had a hole at second base. They also had too many designated hitters, with Victor Martinez‘s presence forcing both Prince Fielder and Miguel Cabrera to play the field even when they really couldn’t. With Cabrera’s body breaking down in September, it became pretty clear that something had to give, and an obvious solution was moving one of their DHs could open up some money for them to fill their second base hole.

Instead of making a series of smaller transactions that accomplished that goal, the Tigers instead just found a way to directly exchange Prince Fielder for Ian Kinsler, filling their hole at second base, freeing up their DH logjam, and saving enough money to potentially keep the rest of their core in tact. This is a pretty fantastic start to the off-season for Dave Dombrowski.

Before we get too much further into the commentary, let’s break down the specifics of what swapping Prince Fielder for Ian Kinsler actually works out to.

Fielder is owed another $168 million over the next seven years, paid in annual installments of $24 million. Kinsler is due $62 million over the next four years, but the deal is actually somewhat front-loaded from here, as it’s $16 million in 2014, $16 million in 2015, $14 million in 2016, and then only $11 million in 2017, then a $5 million buyout that will probably be counted against their 2018 budget.

In terms of annual savings, the Tigers are chopping $8 million per year off their payroll for the next two years, then $10 million, then $13 million, then $19 million, and finally the full $24 million for the last years. That’s $106 million in future salary commitments that were shed by exchanging these two contracts. To offset some of that difference, the Tigers will pay $30 million of the remaining $168 million that Fielder is still owed, so their final savings will amount to $76 million in future payroll obligations.

From the Tigers perspective, this can simply be looked at as swapping Fielder for Kinsler and the right to re-spend $76 million on something else. And there’s just no way that’s not a huge win for the Tigers.

Let’s just start with the basics. Steamer projects Ian Kinsler as a +3.3 WAR player in 2014, which is based on him basically playing at the same level he did in 2012 but playing in a few more games. Nothing about this forecast should be all that controversial. His wRC+ is expected to go from 105 to 108, which is exactly halfway in between his 2013 mark and his career mark. It’s forecasting Kinsler for -2 runs relative to an average defensive second baseman, a little lower than his career +1 UZR/150 and basically the same mark he posted last year. This forecast says that Ian Kinsler should be expected to be Ian Kinsler, and over 150 games, that Ian Kinsler is worth a little more than +3 wins relative to a replacement level second baseman, which is basically what the Tigers had a few hours ago.

To get Kinsler, they lose Fielder, who Steamer projects as a +3.7 WAR player next year. Except that projection actually does raise a few eyebrows, as it forecasts a return to his career average wRC+ — a significant bump over what he did last year — and then projects him to post his best baserunning value since 2007 (-3.7, so still bad but less awful than he has been every year since his first season as a regular) and only penalizes him -1 run on defense relative to an average first baseman, far better than his past performances would suggest. I think this is about as generous a forecast for Fielder as you can get, giving him very little penalty for the non-hitting parts of baseball, and believing that his mediocre 2013 season was not the beginning of any kind of long term downwards trend. And even with those positive assumptions, Fielder is still basically a break even player with Kinsler.

Except those numbers are all in a vacuum. In Detroit’s specific circumstance, Kinsler’s value is even higher relative to Fielder due to the alternatives. By moving Fielder, the Tigers can now shift Miguel Cabrera back to first base and pursue a reasonable Major League third baseman, likely making Cabrera a more valuable player going forward and lessening the wear and tear on their franchise hitter. This might even open the door for top prospect Nick Castellanos to shift back to third base, rather than having to battle for outfield time with another veteran acquisition. Opening up first base creates some significant positive benefits for the Tigers, so moving Fielder doesn’t just give them the value they get from Kinsler, but also those additional improvements as well.

And that’s before we even talk about the $76 million in future commitments they just saved. Or, really, just freed up to re-spend, because the Tigers are in a position where they should absolutely be trying to maximize their current roster to try and win a World Series while they have Cabrera and Verlander and the rest of this group in their primes. And that $76 million can either be repurposed to acquire another player — perhaps a left-handed hitting outfielder — or to help the team retain Max Scherzer. The Tigers had apparently been listening to offers for Scherzer because they were unlikely to be able to re-sign him due to their other commitments, but with Fielder’s contract off the books, they should be able to at least consider keeping Scherzer long term now if they want to.

It’s possible that the money they’re sending to Texas will cover most of the differences over the next few years, and all the savings will be in the back-end of the contract, so that they might not have that much extra payroll to spend this winter. But $76 million in future commitments have still be freed up to offer to other players, even if it’s not necessarily all available immediately, and that’s enough to get you in the ballpark for Shin-Soo Choo, who projects as a +3 WAR player himself. Choo won’t sign for $76 million, but maybe he’ll sign for $100 million, so you could describe this trade as Kinsler and 3/4 of Shin-Soo Choo for Prince Fielder.

But maybe that’s too rich for their blood, and they’d rather just throw the entire savings at Curtis Granderson and a closer. You can probably get Granderson and Joe Nathan for less than $76 million. Kinsler, Granderson, and Nathan, or Prince Fielder? These aren’t even close. The answers are glaringly obvious. No one’s taking Fielder in any of these hypotheticals.

The Tigers turned a $168 million +3 WAR player into a $92 million +3 WAR player, once you account for the cash they’re sending to Texas, only the +3 WAR player they’re getting fits their roster better and allows them to keep Miguel Cabrera healthier and opens a spot for their best prospect. And they saved $76 million in the process, which can probably buy them another three wins assuming they spend it decently. There’s a good chance that, at the end of the day, the Tigers will have taken that $168 million they owed Fielder and basically doubled the return they could have expected from keeping him.

If you’re a Tigers fan, this is a deal to celebrate. Don’t worry about narratives like “big bats” and “Cabrera needs protection”, or listen to the criticisms of Kinsler’s good-at-everything-great-at-nothing skillset. The Tigers just made a fantastic trade that sets them up to be even better in 2014 than they were the last two years.

Dave Dombrowski has made a lot of good trades; this might end up being one of his best.
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