Bam! Santana trade!

DMZ · January 29, 2008 at 2:32 pm · Filed Under General baseball 


From ESPN, the Mets got him. Deal’s held up as they see how many dump trucks of money they’ll need to drive up to Santana’s house. The cost:

If New York can work out a contract agreement with Minnesota, the Mets will send outfielder Carlos Gomez and pitchers Phil Humber, Deolis Guerra and Kevin Mulvey to the Twins.

Presumably, they mean “with Santana” there.

Wow. I didn’t see that coming. What’s that mean to the Bedard market?

Dave adds: This package of talent isn’t even close to what the M’s are giving up for Bedard. Gomez is a nice prospect, but he’s nothing close to Adam Jones. He projects as a solid CF down the line, but he’s not an elite young player. Guerra is the Mets version of Chris Tillman – good arm, not close to the majors, work to do. Humber and Mulvey are both moderate upside guys who might make decent back-end starters someday.

The M’s equivalent of this deal would be something like Jeff Clement, Chris Tillman, Wladimir Balentien, and Matt Tuiasasopo (they don’t have pitchers that are good comps for Humber/Mulvey, as they go for more high upside/risk arms).

The Yankees and Red Sox didn’t budge on their stance to not include their studly young major league players. The Mets didn’t even give up their best prospect! Next time someone tells you the M’s are paying market price for Bedard, you can send a swam of bees after them.

Photo from .A.A.’s photo stream at Flickr, used under the Creative Commons license


134 Responses to “Bam! Santana trade!”

  1. JMHawkins on January 29th, 2008 10:43 pm

    BTW, I’m using All-Star Caliber to mean “one of the top tier guys at their position” and not “someone who gets a lot of fanmail.” There’s probably a better term to use, but the jist is, to be legitmate contenders, we’ll need more than one or two guys who rank near the top of their position.

  2. thefin190 on January 29th, 2008 10:53 pm

    Dave – How much ‘seasoning’ do you think that Johnson and Jeremy Reed need? I know that Jeremy Reed was starting in 2005-06 but never produced that much, and then he got injured and never came back. Will Reed ever be a major leaguer?

  3. Dave on January 29th, 2008 10:58 pm

    Rob Johnson will never hit – he’s a backup catcher in the making. Reed’s tinkered with his swing enough that if he has any kind of career, it’s now as a 5th OF/bench guy.

  4. BillyJive on January 29th, 2008 10:59 pm


  5. michaelfox99 on January 29th, 2008 11:20 pm

    Baseball is really lame. The game is great, but the MLB is absurd.

    The idea of an NTC is insane in a league without a salary cap. The Mets get Johan for peanuts because they’re the mets?

    The draft is totally screwed and favors the same handful of teams.

    Free agency is totally screwed and favors the same handful of teams.

    NTC’s for the best players screws trades too and further favors the same handful of teams.

    If ever there was a time to boycott…

  6. Sports on a Schtick on January 29th, 2008 11:29 pm

    Yet in this decade seven different franchises have won eight championships and revenue is at an all-time high.

    *shrugs like the time Bud Selig did when there was a tie in the All-Star game*

  7. Colm on January 29th, 2008 11:48 pm


  8. Colm on January 29th, 2008 11:51 pm

    Oh dear.

    …that should read “the Mariners WILL continue to display the financial savvy of an Albanian goat-herder at the bottom of a Ponzi-scheme.”

    It bears repeating.

  9. JJT4444 on January 30th, 2008 12:16 am

    I’m not sure if 4/60 is unreasonable for Bedard…if you figure that he’ll get $8 mm this year in arby, $15 mm next year in arby and $20 mm his first two years of free agency. That is $63 mm. A slight discount for a multi-year deal and you get 4/60. I think JMHawkins makes a good argument, but I’m not seeing where we are giving away so many position players in a Bedard deal. What is being reported is Jones and three or four pitchers. If we won’t have position players in the system a few years after a Bedard trade, we won’t have them even if we don’t make the trade (except for AJ). I just wonder where the pitching will come from if we don’t make a trade. With Bavasi’s track record, I see Felix and a bunch of overpaid Washburn-types. I guess we can hope that we figure out how to develop our young pitchers, but I don’t think we’ll be able to count on guys that are 18 and 19 years old for at least 3-4 years (probably longer), if they make it at all. My main concern is what is going to happen if we don’t get Bedard and Bavasi still thinks he needs to find a starter to save his job. That is really how the Soriano/Horam trade came about last year – BB panicked when he didn’t land his other targets. I just don’t want to see Bavasi trade Jones for Ian Snell or Joe Blanton. At least Bedard is really good.

  10. Colm on January 30th, 2008 12:32 am

    It’s not Bedard or nothing.

    There is a great post from Dave Cameron in the archives about the value of the Mariners raiding (believe it or not) the Devil Rays for their excess of good young starters.

    Are they as good as Bedard? No, not close by themselves. But does say, J.P. Howell, Edwin Jackson and Adam Jones give you more wins than Bedard and an outfield defence that consists solely of Ichiro – most likely, and at a fraction of the cost.

    Forgive me if the names are off; I’m about to head to bed.

  11. Colm on January 30th, 2008 12:34 am

    Damn, that was fussy Derek. That was a good post AND I nailed the notorious Piñeiro spelling.


  12. JMHawkins on January 30th, 2008 12:39 am

    JMHawkins makes a good argument, but I’m not seeing where we are giving away so many position players in a Bedard deal.

    My main point is that if we’re paying $50 M for our 1-2-3 pitchers, we can’t afford to sign the position player’s we’ll need (because the system is bare), especially if we need one more because the gave up a young, cheap, good outfielder. Plus, if we not only trade away a bunch of our farm pitching, put also relegate Morrow to the pen (it’ll be another year there for him if we do the Bedard deal, since the rotation would be Felix + 4 guys averaging $9M/year or so) and give up on Baek, we’re that much thinner for filling out our 4-5 slots in 2010 with cheap players, and non-train-wreck starting pitchers seem to run $8+M on the FA market.

    Even with optimistic best-case scenarios for Ichiro, Lopez, Bentancourt, Johjima, Felix, Silva and Bedard, I don’t think the M’s could construct better than a 90 win team in 2010. 90 wins won’t get it done. We’ve got to find more home-grown pitching, and Bedard ain’t home grown. As good as he is, he’s the wrong direction.

  13. JMHawkins on January 30th, 2008 12:42 am

    Too many typos in that last comment. Time to go to bed.

  14. bermanator on January 30th, 2008 6:29 am

    The Sun guy is a little more confident that the trade will eventually happen, though he also says it’s still very uncertain. But from today’s blog:

    By the way, the next time you see the words “Jones” and “hip” in the same sentence, it will pertain to the music he’s listening to on his iPod.

  15. scraps on January 30th, 2008 6:49 am

    The idea of an NTC is insane in a league without a salary cap.

    If you think it’s all about the money, sure. The teams and players have agreed to recognize that there are circumstances when a player would like to have some control over where they end up playing, and that under some circumstances clubs are willing to negotiate that. Given that the players do have ordinary human desires about where to live and work and with whom, just like the rest of us, that’s a decent and human thing to have in a bargaining agreement.

  16. bermanator on January 30th, 2008 7:16 am

    I would agree to an NTC if there’s some kind of quid pro quo … for example, if I re-sign with Seattle for less than market value because I really love it here and want to raise my family in the area, I want an assurance that I’ll be staying in exchange for giving up the extra FA dollars.

    If Seattle’s not willing to give me that assurance, there’s no incentive for me to take less than free market value to sign.

  17. Jar on January 30th, 2008 7:31 am

    [violated terms of comment submission button]

  18. snapper on January 30th, 2008 7:32 am

    “My main point is that if we’re paying $50 M for our 1-2-3 pitchers, we can’t afford to sign the position player’s we’ll need”

    I think, given the expanding revenue in MLB, you have to think the M’s will be able to support a $125M+ payroll in 2-3 years. You can do $50M for SP, as long as you’re generating cheap talent somewhere.

  19. gwangung on January 30th, 2008 7:39 am

    You can do $50M for SP, as long as you’re generating cheap talent somewhere.

    Not if you’re impatiently giving it away for other talent.

    Make no mistake, this move thins out the farm system considerably. I just think that it’s considerably too much.

  20. Russ on January 30th, 2008 7:54 am

    [violated terms of comment submission button]

    I love the Mod’s here. Thanks for the never ending battle against mediocrity.

  21. Carson on January 30th, 2008 8:20 am

    I don’t follow the NL as well as I should. Is there a chance of Pedro even becoming half of his former self? The thought of him having a resurgence, pitching the day after Johan is just insane.

  22. galaxieboi on January 30th, 2008 8:22 am

    The draft is the most ‘fair’ part of the entire system. The Hardball Times had a great article in this year’s annual about teams using the draft. Too many teams refuse to pay over slot and therefor players fall to teams like the BoSox and Yanks (who will pay overslot money) and that’s why it feels unfair.

  23. BaltimoreDave on January 30th, 2008 8:44 am

    I’d like to circle back to the post topic, specifically Derek’s question about what the Santana trade means for Bedard’s market.

    I don’t believe the two are remotely similar for one simple reason: Santana is in control of his (baseball) fate, while Bedard is not.

    The Mets are essentially trading for a negotiating window for Johan; the M’s are trading for the next 2 years of Bedard. The difference in value in those 2 situations is very large, and I think the Twins’ return reflects that. Bedard *should* command much more in trade, as he is bound to his next team for 2 years – and at reasonable cost. I’d even argue that Bedard is *more* attractive since you’re only buying his next two seasons without several more expensive seasons tacked on.

    So – to directly compare the two exchanges is misleading; the circumstances are entirely different. If the Twins’ side is to be believed, Johan has exercised his power to force his way to a new team. Any interested party recognized that a trade would be contingent on an extension – Johan’s requirement for waiving his NTC – and valued the price in talent surrendered accordingly. Which means the Yankees would have been wildly overpaying if they had surrendered Hughes, knowing Santana was willing to waive his NTC specifically to join them.

    I’m not saying the Twins extracted the best return possible; I don’t think they used the trade to address their primary need for top-level offensive talent. I’m also not suggesting the M’s are offering the “right” amount for Bedard – a 5-player package headlined by Adam Jones is simply too much for Bedard. But given the circumstances, the Twins had far less leverage to extract sufficient value for Santana.

  24. forte40 on January 30th, 2008 9:19 am

    Dave, how much impact do you think the Santana trade has had on Bedard’s, if any?

  25. DMZ on January 30th, 2008 9:22 am

    The draft, of course, being the most fair to teams.

    That’s an important distinction. It’s horrible to the players.

  26. metz123 on January 30th, 2008 9:28 am

    Sure the Twins and O’s situations are different. The O’s – M’s talks are analogous to 2 suitors deciding if they are compatible. It’s unfortunate that the M’s have taken the stance of the nerdy guy willing to do anything and everything required to score a date for the prom.

    Bedard has value because he’s under club control for 2 years and he has a proven MLB pedigree. Jones has value because he’s under club control for 6 years. The other players being offered by the M’s have value because they are prospects or proven records and are also under club control.

    Unfortunately the M’s are incapable of negotiating from a position of even strength. They’ve taken the stance of being the club in need and lost hand in the negotiation process. Under Bavasi have the M’s ever said “here’s a good player/prospect we’ll listen to offers on. Bring us your best deal and we’ll listen. If we don;t like any offers we’ll keep the player.”

    Instead we always seem to be saying either “here’s a player we want to get rid of, we’ll take whatever you want to offer” or “We want your player, we really, REALLY want him. What will it take to pry him away from you?”

  27. Carson on January 30th, 2008 9:29 am

    Derek, my vote for the next submission button is:

    “I read this thread before stating/asking about something that’s been covered 20 times.”

    Crud. That’s too long.

  28. JMHawkins on January 30th, 2008 9:34 am

    Hey everybody, welcome to Day Three of the Circus.

    The draft, of course, being the most fair to teams.

    That’s an important distinction. It’s horrible to the players.

    Hey, the players are playing a kid’s game for a job. They should just shut up and put in their 12 hour days, spend 9 months out of the year away from their families, wear out their bodies and quietly go away when they’re finally chucked onto the scrap heap in their mid thirties.

  29. galaxieboi on January 30th, 2008 10:22 am

    The draft, of course, being the most fair to teams.

    That’s an important distinction. It’s horrible to the players.

    Yes, I totally agree. I should’ve made that clear when I was posting. For that post I was commenting on what is most fair from the team’s perspective.

  30. et_blankenship on January 30th, 2008 10:27 am


    Peter Angelos? Is that you? McPhail maybe? Seriously . . . Bavasi?

    The best offers the Twins received came from the Red Sox and Yankees. Johan’s NTC did not exclude either of those teams. So to say Johan’s NTC diminished the Twins leverage is wrong. The Twins had maximum leverage when they had the Red Sox and Yankees fighting over Johan. It was the Twins fault for not taking advantage of that situation.

    Baltimore currently has leverage in the form of one team: Seattle. If the O’s are stalling on the offer, you can bet they are contacting the 28 other organizations to see anyone would care to match or beat the Jones deal. If not, oh well. They would still get an incredible haul from the Mariners. While it’s fun to picture Angelos pounding his fist on his desk, screaming obscenities at McPhail and dreaming of new ways to sabotage the deal (“I got it! Degenerative hip!”) he is probably just shopping for an 11th hour steal right now.

    [quote]“The Mets are essentially trading for a negotiating window for Johan; the M’s are trading for the next 2 years of Bedard.”[/quote]

    No. The Mets will either have Johan for 6 years or they will keep their prospects. The Mets get to decide if they like the contract or not. If the Mets can’t get a deal worked out, they keep their prospects. If they do get a deal worked out, they get Johan for 6 +/- years. Conversely, Seattle would get Bedard for 2 years. I would argue that Bedard has more control over his baseball fate because in 2 years, he can go wherever the hell he wants.

  31. BaltimoreDave on January 30th, 2008 11:53 am

    130 – Very funny.

    Look, I’m not arguing that the Twins failed to extract maximum value from this deal. Hell, even if the Mets were the only team involved, they failed to get the guy who would have helped them the most in Martinez.

    What I’m arguing is that the Twins had the leverage to pull off a much better deal. I mean, what were the Twins offering here? Santana had a blanket NTC; he made it clear he would use it; and he declined a long-term offer from the Twins that essentially announced what it would take to sign him. The Twins choices were hanging onto him for 2008 and getting 2 first-round draft picks, or taking the first concrete offer that trumps those 2 picks. The Mets, Yankees and Sox knew that and bid accordingly.

    As you noted, the O’s have no such restrictions. They simply need to select the best package from any team who wants a top-of-rotation starter for 2 years at reasonable cost.

    What I’m arguing is that the Santana trade somehow has a direct affect on what the O’s can expect from a trade of Bedard. To me, the situations are so different that there should be no comparison.

  32. stevie_j13 on January 30th, 2008 12:21 pm

    If I’m one of the 28 other teams, why would I jump into the Bedard sweepstakes now? The Mariners have already been bidding against themselves, with Baltimore well aware that Bavasi is desperate and clinging to his job by a thread. If Bavasi tried to lower his demands, the Orioles would just call his bluff. The only way the Santana deal affects the Bedard market is if the M’s get out of the bidding, and the status quo for Baltimore is still an ace pitcher with two years left of club control – not a bad deal. Plus, imagine the deal the O’s could get for Bedard at the trading deadline. In other words, there is no reason for them to be in a rush, and every reason for Bavasi to remain in panic mode.

  33. vj on January 30th, 2008 1:48 pm

    Batgirl’s take on the negotiations:

  34. giuseppe on January 30th, 2008 3:06 pm

    Now I’m actually just hoping for a new long analysis post on the trade to push that photo of the girl getting punched way down, so I don’t have to look at it every time I check back here.

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