Thursday’s news, the Putz deal
This ended up going into yesterday’s Q & A bucket after I collapsed from exhaustion, but the big news is that JJ Putz got a three-year, $13m deal. It’s a good move in a couple of ways: as Dave’s noted, the bullpen’s been getting a lot shakier through this off-season, and it really does help to have someone who can get some outs on the staff. I don’t agree that if you have that guy you only pitch him in the ninth when you’re up 1-3 runs, obviously, but the M’s have the money and the stability gets them somewhere.
The problem I see, though, is that Putz is unlikely to repeat the performance we saw last year. I’m not trying to say that he’s not good, or that his late-blooming development isn’t for real, but sustaining that kind of performance is extremely difficult, and next year, when he’s just really good instead of crazy good, I wonder if we’re going to see people ragging on him for sucking it up once he got the money. That’d be sad.
Money-value wise, as much as I hate to make this kind of rough comparison, look at what the Orioles were paying for relievers this year. Putz at this price, even if you’d agree with us that closers aren’t all that hard to find and make, is still undervalued to a lot of teams, and you could move him if you had to.
I know, that’s not an amazing endorsement, and I’m mixing some pretty lame analysis, but in my defense, I’m a little swamped with work and I really want to sneak off and go skiing.