Rafael Soriano opted out of a $14 million dollar deal with the Yankees in the hope that he can find a multi-year deal with another club. Rafael Soriano and his agent, Scott Boras, are both nuts. This off season, Soriano will be competing for a big pay-day with Jonathan Broxton, Francisco Rodriguez, Jose Valverde, Ryan Madson, Brad Lidge, and a slew of other relievers. Can Soriano really get the 4 year $60 million dollar contract he seeks?
He has had stints on the DL in 2002, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2008, and 2011. And some of those injuries were substantial. Then look at some high salaried closer busts like Heath Bell, or the injured Brian Wilson, and it seems impossible to envision a team paying Soriano the salary he seek, especially when teams such as the Tampa Bay Rays got a bargain in Fernando Rodney for just over $2 million this year and in 2013. Boras is taking the “strike while the iron is hot” approach. Once all other relievers sign before his client, the iron will get cold pretty quick.
Is Mike Aviles the man that everybody wants, or the man that nobody wants? Aviles is a .277 career hitter who has some pop in his bat. After being given an opportunity, he had a career year with 13HR and 60RBI. Earning $1.2 million, he is a pretty decent value, and he should continue to be a solid contributor. The Indians made a good deal to acquire him from the Blue Jays, but will he get the playing time he got in Boston? Stay tuned…
Scott Hairston, Jon Rauch, Ramon Ramirez, Ronny Cedeno, Kelly Shoppach, Tim Byrdak and Chris Young, all became free agents, and in all probability, will leave the Mets for greener pastures. While Hairston is the one player the Mets should retain, the frugal Mets will have to let him walk due to his breakout season and higher salary demands. He is assured of getting a contract far better than the $1.1 million he got in 2012, and the Mets will have no choice but to let him go. The one player who may return is Kelly Shoppach. The Mets are realizing that Josh Thole is not the answer, and Shoppach will prove to be an affordable counterpart to Thole. The Mets can say they will pursue a high profile catcher behind the plate all they want, but ultimately, Shoppach’s salary demands will best suit the Mets. Thankfully, none of the others mentioned will return to the Mets in 2013…
The Angels declined Dan Haren’s $15.5 million dollar contract making him a free agent. It’s difficult to argue with the decision based on his declining stats, but one down year doesn’t always mean a pitcher is washed up. Haren is 32 years old. In 2009/2010, 32 year old Kyle Lohse went a combined 10-18 with an ERA over 5.00. The last two years, Lohse has gone 30-11 with a combined ERA just over 3.10. He also had his highest strikeout total in his 12 year career. Haren may prove to be a bargain at $7 million a season for a team willing to take a chance on him.
The Marlins named Mike Redmond as their new manager. Baseball teams are now hiring young managers with little or no experience due to the success enjoyed by the likes of Mike Matheny and Robin Ventura. MLB is a copycat league, so Redmond’s hiring comes as no surprise. But remember, the two World Series managers this year were grizzled veterans. In fact, the last “player to manager” to win the World Series was second year manager Ozzie Guillen in 2005.
The Rangers offense ranked first in the majors in runs per game, batting average, slugging percentage and on-base-plus-slugging percentage. Gee, no wonder they felt the need to fire (reassign) their hitting coach Scott Coolbaugh.
Filed under: Digging Deep - Analysis Tagged: | Brad Lidge, Brian Wilson, Chris Youn, Dan Haren, Fernando Rodney, Francisco Rodriguez, Free Agents, Heath Bell, Jon Rauch, Jonathan Broxton, Jose Valverde, Josh Thole, Kelly Shoppach, Kyle Lohse, Los Angeles Angels, Miami Marlins, Mike Aviles, Mike Matheny, Mike Redmond, New York Mets, New York Yankees, Ozzie Guillen, Rafael Soriano, Ramon Ramirez, Robin Ventura, Ronny Cedeno, Ryan Madson, Scott Coolbaugh, Scott Hairston, Tim Byrdak, Trades