The Rumor Du Jour
"I didn't give anybody assurances," Minaya said yesterday. "I told him that we're very happy with the job he did last year."
Kris Benson for Mike MacDougal and Jeremy Affeldt? Or is it Kris Benson for Mike MacDougal or Jeremy Affeldt and a prospect. If it is choice #1, I like it a lot. Both guys have stuff and a lot of it. Of course, putting it all together has been an issue for each of them. Affeldt can start or come out of the pen which adds that flexibility that Omar loves so much. All of us have players in the Majors that some people will say sucks, but for some reason, you love them anyway. For me, Affeldt is a guy that I wanted on the Mets for a while. His stuff is disgusting and he is a southpaw to boot.
Movement: AVERAGE - PLUS
Notes: Low 90s Good Sink
Movement: AVERAGE - PLUS
Notes: Up To 95 Live Pitch
Notes: 73-79; Changes Speeds On It Also Can Change The Break From A Slow Looper To A Hard 3/4 Break
Rating: AVERAGE - MINUS
Notes: 83-84; Inconsistent Pitch; Mostly Straight; Some Late Fade Occasionally
Affeldt has largely been a disappointment since people have always expected a lot from him. He walks too many people, give up too man hits, and has only posted below a 4.64 ERA once. He has had trouble ditching blister issues that have hampered him throughout his career and contributed to his struggles. However, he is still a wildcard and I think he is one of those guys that are just going to break out eventually and just be nasty. The Mets could catch lighting in a bottle with him.
As for MacDougal, he is as nasty as they come. He is a flamethrower that can reach 100 mph and can pair with Wagner as what I can assume is the only lefty/righty combo out the pen that touch 100 mph. Amazing to even think about if you are on their team or a Met fan and a scary prospect if you are the opponent. He has a nasty slider to boot, but like Affeldt, has largely been a disappointment. 2005 was his best year, which bodes well for the Mets if they acquire him, but like Affeldt, he gives up too many hits and walks too many people.
It is debatable which one of these two could be considered the centerpiece, but I think this is a very solid deal for Kris Benson and nice return. The obvious thing is that the Mets would have the ability to shift Heilman to the rotation if they so desire or even Jeremy Affeldt to the rotation in 2006 or 2007 if he can gain some consitancy. If the Mets bring back Roberto Hernandez, they will have a solid pen that is pretty deep with or without Aaron Heilman. Whether or not they would plan on moving Heilman out of the pen is beyond me, but I cannot say I'd prefer it. While many people think he is wasted in the pen, he may in fact be more effective out of the pen. As it has been pointed out before and most recently by Rob Neyer, he had the lowest SLGA out of any reliever with 50 or more innings pitched with Wagner breathing down his neck in second in 2005. Would he be equally as devastating as a starter? Of course the only way to find that out is actually let him start, but Omar still holds a lot of cards and could still possibly deal two starters to fill other organizational needs. I'm happy if this deal goes through, but there are conflicting reports about whether it is Affeldt and MacDougal so I'll reserve judgment on the deal, but if it goes down, it is a good one.
A high-ranking Royals official said the Mets wouldn't be able to get both pitchers in exchange for Benson, but might be able to get one. If the Royals agreed to send MacDougal, they would not want to send anybody else. But if the Mets decide they'd take Affeldt instead, the Royals might add another player.
It is a nice recovery from the LoDuca trade if it's both because the Mets would have come out smelling like roses. However, if it is just one, I'm not sure it is entirely different from the Jorge Julio deal. Young power arms that have trouble putting it together. I'd like to see them get both even if they add another player to do it, but if I had to choose one with a gun to my head, it would be MacDougal. I guess we'll see where this one goes, but what I would like to see is a hard stance by Omar. The Royals badly want a veteran starting pitcher and the Orioles deal is always there presumably should it fall through. Omar needs to play this like they need it more because it looks like they do. That harball tactic probably will not work, but I see minimal difference in MacDougal, Julio, and Affeldt. MacDougal had a better 2005 obviously than anyone else, but is no sure thing. Choose your poison, but I would rather use the Orioles as leverage to sweeten the deal.
The Blue Jays appear determined to break the New York/Boston hold on the AL East, having spent $102 million on Burnett and closer B.J. Ryan. Facing Burnett, Roy Halladay and Gustavo Chacin in a series will be no day at the beach.
But I think this will be a deal Toronto will come to regret. Burnett, who is 49-50 with a 3.73 ERA for his career, has never been an All-Star and has made 30 starts once in his career.
The last starter who got a five-year contract was Chan Ho Park, from Texas in 2001. How did that work out?
Here's a little story: Last spring training a few Mets writers ventured into the Marlins' clubhouse before a game to talk to Carlos Delgado. Burnett, from the other side of the room, started cursing at us and carrying on. He made such a fool of himself that teammates told him to pipe down.
The Marlins banished Burnett from the team for the final week of the season after he got into a shouting match with then-manager Jack McKeon.
Burnett is a classic example of being the best pitcher in a bad market and getting paid because of it.
Nah, I'm not wrong. I still love his arm, but I can see why the Mets kept their distance. I just think this guy is going to breakout. A full year after his TJ surgery with his stuff at his age? Anyone that wants to point to his sub .500 record has not followed him. If he can shed the arm problems, the sky is the limit.
Also from Peter's article...
Gantonelle writes: Any possibility that the Mets can work out a deal with Toronto? Miguel Batista looks certain to be packing his bags since the Burnett signing. The Jays won't add him to the rotation, don't need him to close with the Ryan signing, and won't want to pay his salary for him to be a set-up man.
Answer: Good idea for the Mets. But with so many teams needing a closer, Toronto can get a lot for Batista. The Mets won't pay as heavily for a set-up man. Besides, the Mets have future Hall of Famer Aaron Heilman.
Classic...imagine if Heilman sucks it up this year? What's the over/under on everyone calling for him to be cut if he doesn't repeat his success of last season?
The Mets were the first team to announce a trade at winter meetings, but Toronto topped their acquisition when it placed a No. 34 Blue Jays shirt on free-agent right-hander A.J. Burnett, signing him to a five year, $55-million deal Tuesday afternoon.
Is anyone surprised the fucking Yes Network took a bizarre jab at the Mets? Topped them by signing Burnett, what does one have to do with the other? Douchebags...