Garrett Olson

Dave · January 28, 2009 at 10:03 am · Filed Under Mariners 

ESPN reports that the pitching prospect the M’s are getting with Ronny Cedeno is Garrett Olson, whom the Cubs just picked up from the Orioles for Felix Pie.

At this point, if you don’t like this trade, you’re just trying to be a curmudgeon. This is an amazingly fantastic deal for the M’s.

Olson is a 25-year-old LHP with a below average fastball, a good slider, and a solid change-up. He was the Orioles best pitching prospect the last few years, but like Cedeno, he’s been bad in the majors. However, not nearly as bad as his results would indicate.

In 132 innings for Baltimore last year, Olson had a 5.13 FIP – way, way lower than his 6.65 ERA. Just like we talked about with Silva, there’s a huge regression to the mean coming, and considering his minor league track record, quite a bit of upside beyond that.

Olson consistently struck out about one batter per inning in the minors and flashed good command as well. He’s pretty neutral on balls in play, being neither an extreme groundball or flyball guy. CHONE projects him for a 4.96 FIP for 2009, which sounds about right. He’s a #5 starter with potentially some upside as a #4 starter. Not that much unlike Aaron Heilman himself, honestly.

He’s under team control for five more years, and he won’t make any money until 2011. Adding him to Ryan Rowland-Smith, Ryan Feierabend, and Jason Vargas, the club now has four mid-20s LHPs with potential who are all under team control for the next 4-5 years. The M’s have quietly been stockpiling arms who fit perfectly into Safeco Field, and filling out the back-end of the rotation for no cost for the foreseeable future.

I’d have traded Heilman for either Ronny Cedeno or Garrett Olson. To get both is just a huge win for the M’s.


108 Responses to “Garrett Olson”

  1. dchappelle on January 29th, 2009 7:12 am

    Yuni is NOT a good hitter. His career wOBA is .303. Last year his was .299. NOT GOOD. Although certainly better than the numbers Ronny Cedeno has put up. The reason to get Cedeno is because of his minor league numbers. Let’s just hope he’s not one of the inexplicable AAAA players (that mash AAA pitching, but can’t make the leap).

    If you’re not familiar with wOBA . Surprised this isn’t on the left handy links yet.

  2. James T on January 29th, 2009 7:21 am

    Wow. I’ve really been impressed with your man Z so far. When he was being rumored as a candidate for the job, one of the tidbits mentioned in the press was that everybody likes him. And some folks thought this was, in itself, good. But I thought it was probably closer to bad. Well, obviously, it doesn’t matter. Getting guys like Olson and Cedeno who failed in their first try at the bigs has ALWAYS been a great way to exploit a market inefficiency.

    Yeah, this Lou Brock kid’s not doing much for us. You’ll give us Ernie Broglio for him! Etc etc etc.

    Just a great move. This combined with a smart big picture vision of what kind of team you should build for Safeco along with taking guys like Blengino (sp?) and Tango seriously are great signs for you guys. In a couple years you’ll be fighting the Rangers for the division title.

  3. gwangung on January 29th, 2009 7:37 am

    Getting guys like Olson and Cedeno who failed in their first try at the bigs has ALWAYS been a great way to exploit a market inefficiency. VERY WORST, they improve depth. At best, they improve the front line significantly.

    Gee, what’s bad about that?

  4. daveblev on January 29th, 2009 8:56 am

    Having seen Garrett Olson pitch in person down here in Virginia with the Norfolk Tides, I like this deal. Harbor Park has huge dimensions much like Safeco, obviously that helped his minor league totals vice the bandbox of Camden Yards. They are moving the fences in this year at Norfolk though, hitters have complained about lost homeruns.

  5. Paul B on January 29th, 2009 12:30 pm

    MrMalibog on January 29th, 2009 2:48 am

    Last year Yuni hit .279 but both years before that he hit .289 which is better

    Try using something other than BA to measure a player’s value, and someone might pay attention to your point.

  6. eponymous coward on January 29th, 2009 2:00 pm

    According to projections, Cedeno might or might not be a better hitter than Yuni

    Cedeno’s range of projections are from .329 to .299. Yuni’s are from .308 to .313. While on the surface that APPEARS to be the same, recall that at least one of those projection systems (Marcel) does not factor in minor league baseball performance (which, IMO, makes it flawed- minor league baseball is still baseball, if at a lesser level, and properly adding in performance adjusted for league should help us get more accurate information). Please note that CHONE DOES factor in minor league baseball performance, and projects Cedeno considerably more strongly than Marcels does

    Yuni never hit for power in the minors, by the by (granted, he went through there awfully fast).

  7. MrMalibog on January 30th, 2009 3:17 am

    [name calling]

  8. Breadbaker on January 31st, 2009 12:30 pm

    [long link]

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