Let The Rumors Begin
This one is a doozy.
The Mets may have found a partner willing to deal a starting pitcher after all, which could be even more pressing as Pedro Martinez is about to miss his third straight start.
The White Sox have been calling around to clubs - including the Mets - letting it be known that Javier Vazquez or Freddy Garcia would be available. The price: top-notch relief help, which would allow the Sox to fortify their bullpen leading to closer Bobby Jenks, sources told the Daily News. Chicago has 23-year-old Brandon McCarthy ready to step into its rotation.
Signed though 2007 and he will receive $10 million in 2007
Garcia throws a mix of fastballs, curveballs, sliders, and changeups. He throws his fastball about 92-93 mph.
Singed through 2007 and is due to make $12.5 million in 2007
Vazquez throws the same pitches as Garcia and about the same speed.
They are really more or less identical. When you look at their record, salary, BAA in 2006 and 2003 through 2005, their age, and their repertoire, it's a toss up. Both are work horses that can give you 200+ innings year in and year out, but if I had to choose one, I would choose Garcia. With the production that they are giving this year, you are really trading for playoff experience and a known quantity of a decent big league pitcher. The idea of dealing from the bullpen and giving them Sanchez or Heilman may not be optimal. Dirty Sanchez in no way can be moved and is the best Met reliever and possibly the future closer. I'd give up Heilman if he was solely a reliever, but it is not out of the realm of possibilities that he can produce just the same as these two while being younger (albeit not too much young) and cheaper.
I have no problems rolling the dice with Owens and Bell if a deal is struck, but it boils down to who Omar trusts. If they really do not like the idea of giving Heilman a try out as a starter (and they don’t), then trade him for starting pitching. Heilman should have been tried out a bit ago to asses their needs, but there is no more try out period. Also, they are picking up a lot of salary in '07 and though I do not think that would preclude them from going after Zito, it is a lot of money for what could be mediocre pitching. If you can keep Sanchez and Heilman it is a no brainer, but that is never going to happen. I'm sure Chicago would not mind some salary relief for the remainder of '06 and in '07 and might have a guy in Brandon McCarthy who is better than either of Garcia or Vazquez, but it is not something Kenny Williams would do. They are possibly the best team in baseball and will be looking for a certifiable upgrade and not a marginal one.
I really see this as a possible lateral move and the Mets just adding salary. I like the fact they are more of a proven commodity for sure, but you are still rolling the dice that they suddenly become more effective with the Mets. Yes, the change of leagues will help, but I’m a big fan of paying for current performance rather than past performance. I would just as soon roll the dice on Heilman in the rotation and have him as a cheap and versatile player for the future. With Bannister, Maine, Pelfrey, and Heilman in the running, I could see two emerging for the Mets as solid starters in 2006. In the end it is entirely possible the Mets have soured completely on Heilman, but I hope not. If they have, make the deal like I said because then they view him solely as reliever. If he is not going to get his shot now or down the line, get a starter that can help you this season and next.
"Obviously, I want to be with the Mets, but that's out of my reach," he said. "I'm pretty sure the Mets would be glad to have me and any other team would be glad to have me. We'll see what happens.
"It's cool. It's funny how 11 other teams passed on me and now all of a sudden they want me."
I'm sure his teammates might have plenty more to say than this.
While Milledge's teammates were careful not to criticize the organization's top prospect on the record, off the record they said the kid's ego is as big as his upside.
"It's gone to his head," one member of the Tides said.
Nady said a four-day layoff doesn't seem to have alleviated discomfort with the broken bone in his wrist, which a doctor on Sunday told him could take six weeks to heal. Nady said even grabbing the railing on a ladder while getting out of a pool during the break was uncomfortable.
Rumor has it he feels discomfort when counting his millions too.
Pelfrey got the nod over John Maine for Tuesday -- although Maine also was with the team and will pitch out of the bullpen for now.
Brad (New York, NY): Rob- I get my baseball info from ESPN...I know much about the Yankees and Red Sox but who are these A's and Royals you speak of?
SportsNation Rob Neyer: They're these other teams, playing many of their games west of the Appalachian Trail. There was a time, before modern marvels like the InterWebNet and wireless telephony, when these teams ruled the baseball world. And you can find their tales written in "books".
Mary (Brooklyn): Mr. Cashman says he has no plans to trade young pitcher Hughes. I have heard him compared to a young Dwight Gooden. What do you say?
SportsNation Rob Neyer: That's preposterous, the Gooden comparison. Felix Hernandez is the only pitcher in the last 20 years who was remotely comparable to Gooden, and even Hernandez has had his problems. Hughes is an excellent prospect and I believe Cashman is sincere about keeping him. But if he belonged to any other franchise he'd be just another Grade A pitching prospect.
Just keeping it all in perspective.
Michael (KC, MO): I got your Book of Blunders in May and loved it. If you ever revise it, do you think you'll add the Pierzynski + cash for Liriano, Nathan, and Bonzer. With even 2 of those 3, I would have to think SF would win the West.
SportsNation Rob Neyer: I think that's fair to assume. And while it's hard for a modern trade to be considered a huge blunder because of free agency, a three-for-one deal makes it possible. I think Brian Sabean's going to be hearing about this one for a while, and it's a LOT worse than Kazmir-for-Zambrano.
Kind of makes me feel better....kind of.
Michel Abreu went 1 for 3 with a run scored for the North All-Stars in the AA All-Star game. The South was victorious in the game 5-3 as they out hit the North twelve to six.
Joe Smith keep on rolling as he picked up hiw fourth save for Booklyn on Wednesday as they beat Williamsport 4-1. Smith has now given up four hits and two walks in ten innings while striking out thirteen. I do not expect him to be here all that long considering his college experience and should finish up the year in high A St. Lucie with an eye on Binghamton in 2007.
Laura Enos, Bonds' attorney for business matters, told The Times that Hoskins threatened her client after Bonds confronted Hoskins in June 2003 over the alleged forging of Bonds' signature on contracts.
"He came and we met in a conference room," Enos told The Times. "He said: 'I have three doors. If you don't drop this memorabilia issue, I'm going to ruin Barry. Behind door No. 1 is an extramarital affair. Behind door No. 2 is failure to declare income tax. And behind door No. 3 is use of steroids. And I will go to the press and ruin Barry. His records will be ruined. He will never get into the Hall of Fame.'"