Monday, December 27, 2010

Half Of The Greinke Effort Would Get Dodgers a Viable LF

As we all know, Ned Colletti was tenacious in his attempt to trade for the present Brewer Zach Greinke. How he was going to accomplish that, we don't know but we do know we have a platoon of Jay Gibbons, Tony Gwynn Jr. and Xavier Paul playing LF at this point. There really wasn't much in the way of available left fielders in the free agent market and now, even less of the FA's remain. Forget the question of why Ned was going after Greinke when the Dodgers have 6 quality starting pitchers in house. The Dodgers would be a better team with him, obviously but would not be filling a need.

The question I have is "what if Ned focused half of that energy towards finding a viable left (or right, i.e. move Ethier) fielder via trade?" The evidence that Ned doesn't manage farm system assets is well-documented but, if he were to make a trade for Luke Scott, for instance, wouldn't that pay dividends unless gives way too much in exchange for Scott? I will take Scott even though he is a birther.

It is striking that a GM running a team with great pitching wants even more despite the still-present lack of hitting the Dodgers have. Accumulating an embarrassment of riches in pitching is the San Francisco Giants model for success but the Giants didn't get anywhere until they had some bats. Forget the disappointments that James Loney and Casey Blake will probably be, the LF position at present is not part of a winning strategy.

A better left fielder can still be had but it will require some dealing (my vote is for Lastings Milledge & his baggage). Not as much dealing as it took to get Zach Greinke. Talking to Orioles GM Andy McPhail takes time but a reasonable GM could work a deal with assets the Dodgers possess.

Thus reveals our problem.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Juan Uribe Got Paid

21 million dollars for three years of Juan Uribe! In a league where $5 million probably would have snatched Uribe, Ned Colletti decides he doesn't want the Dodgers to go another day without Uribe wearing Dodger blue. I would imagine that 2 years/$12 million would have snagged Uribe if it would have came from the right team. Ned slightly overpaid in amount per year but the third year was rather gratuitous for a soon-to-be 32 year old player with weight issues and a career .300 OBP. 

Thankfully, Cardinals GM John Mozeliak made Ned look relatively less dumber by actually trading for Ryan Theriot. Though his real value is low, he still has some value in the market. I think that a better deal could have been made had the Dodgers tendered him an offer and then turned him over to a team needing a second baseman. That was one of the few times where Ned comes out looking like the better GM but the way the Dodgers acquired him doesn't make Ned much of a genius at all. 

The silver lining to Juan Uribe becoming a Dodger is that his style of hitting is a refreshing change. Uribe is not slappy, he won't try to steal bases, he plays better defense and he can hit the ball out of the ball park. Even though he doesn't get on base as much as Theriot (.348 career OBP), he will be a better baseball player. He may not be all that great in his third year and he might be bad enough to be on the bench but he has some redeemable traits. 

My only fear is that Scott Podsednik gets a multi-year deal. It could happen but I would rather go with Chad Moriyama's idea of getting Luke Scott and Lance Berkman. I think it might take more to get Scott than James Loney and Jon Link, say one more prospect like Allen Webster or Nate Eovaldi. On Berkman, I would rather have Dunn but spending $7 million on Uribe probably throws a Dunn deal out the window. Berkman is worth another shot at the price of a few million dollars. 

So, the Uribe deal shouldn't be Juan Pierre, Andruw Jones or Jason Schmidt stupid but it may have the same diminishing returns as the Blake deal will have or the Nomar deal had.