Friday open thread – 12/14/2019

The Mets were active in the rule 5 draft, picking up four players. With their first selection, the Mets swiped pitcher Kyle Dowdy from the Cleveland Indians. The hard-throwing right-hander (sound familiar?) struggled in double A last year as a starter, but has shown signs of potential out of the bullpen, where he primarily worked in the Tigers organization before a mid season trade. At 25, he’s hardly a blue-chip prospect, but perhaps he’s a late bloomer. Dowdy figures to compete for a 40-man roster spot with the rest of the caravan of hard-throwing righties in spring training. If he doesn’t stick, the Mets will have to send him back to Cleveland for a partial “refund” as part of the quirky rule 5 stipulations. In the minor league portion of the draft, the Mets scooped up Angels catcher Mitch Ghelfi, Mariners reliever Chris Mazza and Marlins outfielder Braxton Lee. I’ve never heard of any of them, but the Mets could use some farm system replenishment after the Seattle blockbuster.

55 comments for “Friday open thread – 12/14/2019

  1. TexasGusCC
    December 14, 2018 at 1:52 am

    Matt, Dowdy needs to be on the 25 man roster all year in order to keep him.

    Lee is a weird case: a classic underachiever with all the tools. He’s a 70 runner, has 50 raw power, 55 arm, a 45/50 hit tool and a 50/55 fielder. However, he’s a 20/30 game power and in AA and AAA he did nothing. So, either he’s a stiff as his results show, or he’s going to breakout and be a late bloomer. As a minor league free agent, the Mets are able to keep him in Syracuse and see if he develops.

  2. TexasGusCC
    December 14, 2018 at 2:01 am

    Marlins want two of Nimmo, Conforto, Rosario.

    Mets want to offer one of Conforto and Nimmo, and one of Vientos, Giminez and Mauricio.

    It seems like BVW is not going to give up until he gets his way. But, he claims that he doesn’t want to weaken another area to strengthen the catching position. I get that Realmuto is exceptional, and maybe Nimmo is not the stud we all thought we saw at times, but aren’t they better with Nimmo and Grandal rather than Realmuto and Adam Jones?

    Hard to understand – and DeRosa wondered this on MLBN – why Jeter wants MLB pieces when his team will stink for a few years. It’s possible he thinks that he’s going to get teams to give up more prospects to keep the MLB players. Jeter acts like he kisses the mirror every morning. So, how many of those prospects should the Mets give? All three? Two of the three enough? Doubtful there. Wonder what Grandal is asking for to still be unsigned.

    • December 14, 2018 at 3:31 am

      Dowdy gained five mph since he went to Cleveland and the Mets like his spin rates and Fangraphs had a positive write up on him.

      I really don’t get Brodie’s infatuation with Realmuto with Grandal right there and Martino is once again claiming Met are having trade talks with lots of teams about Syndergaard, which is perturbing to me. I’m getting really deep Steve Phillips vibes from Brodie and I hated Phillips.

    • MattyMets
      December 14, 2018 at 7:33 am

      Realmuto is better than Grandal but not by enough to justify creating another hole or two and he’ll only be cheaper for a year or two. I wish all this trade talk would go away. Keep Thor, Rosario, Conforto and Nimmo. Sign Grandal and Marwin Gonzalez and let’s
      get this season started. As Gus points out BVW is saying out of one side of his mouth he doesn’t want to create holes, but this team is already wafer thin in the outfield.

      • Metsense
        December 14, 2018 at 9:29 am

        +1 Matt. Gonzalez and Grandal are the missing pieces.
        Keep Syndergaard. Extend Wheeler at a fair price or trade if. It seems few teams are knocking at the door for Wheeler so this is the time to get a good deal for the Mets on the extension. Then let’s start the season.

      • TexasGusCC
        December 14, 2018 at 1:52 pm

        David, Matt and Metsense, this per Matt Cerrone:

        “According to a Miami source, the Marlins are fully aware of Van Wagenen’s top offer to get Realmuto and it doesn’t include Amed Rosario. Unfortunately, that’s exactly who they want from the Mets. They also reportedly want a second big league player. So far, the Mets have not budged, which has allowed other teams under consideration by the Marlins, specifically the Reds, Padres, White Sox, Rays and Dodgers, all of whom have enough prospects to put together a package that could entice Miami.”

        I think it’s time to move on already and let Jeter keep his shiny toy who is a foul tip away from losing his value playing the game’s most oft-injured position. And while I know there aren’t any foul tip injuries during the winter, who’s going to wait until spring training is starting in order to see if the Prima Donna of the Yankees is ready to deal?

  3. José
    December 14, 2018 at 2:17 am

    Friday’s fun baseball quiz:

    Over a 16 (consecutive) year period, these two players played for the same 4 major league teams and no others, and yet they were teammates for just one of the 16 seasons.

    Who are these two players?

    • December 14, 2018 at 9:03 am

      Great question!

      My first thought was Rickey Henderson but I don’t have a clue as to who the teammate would be. Can you tell me if Henderson is correct?

      • MattyMets
        December 14, 2018 at 9:17 am

        Great trivia question. I looked up a few possibilities – Henderson, Colon, Chris Young – but I’m stumped.

      • TexasGusCC
        December 14, 2018 at 9:22 am

        Each player only played for only four teams.

        • December 14, 2018 at 9:27 am

          From 1982 to 1997, Henderson played for the A’s, Yankees, Padres and Angels. There was nothing in Jose’s question that said it was the sum total of both players’ careers. Henderson was back with the A’s in 1998, so it could be 83-98, too.

          Assuming Henderson is our guy.

    • December 14, 2018 at 10:06 am

      Think I’ve got it. From 1970-1985 both Reggie Jackson and Don Baylor played for the A’s, Orioles, Yankees and Angels but the only year they were teammates was 1982 when they were both on the Angels.

      It was a big help (and hint) that they were traded for one another.

      • TexasGusCC
        December 14, 2018 at 1:35 pm

        Impressive. I got thrown off by the “and no others” part, to assume their careers started and ended together…
        .

      • José
        December 14, 2018 at 4:27 pm

        Damn Brian, you dah man! I thought my trivia question was a real killer, the kind of thing you couldn’t just reference the internet to find the answer.

        Hats off to you for your baseball knowledge without peer!

  4. TexasGusCC
    December 14, 2018 at 2:40 am

    One more (because I have much to offer tonight, LOL, although José’s question will have me up a few more hours):

    Dan O’Dowd tonight on MLBN said that analytics will make people watch less baseball. When asked to clarify, he pointed out that with people so glued to analytics, they will not be as prone to take in alot of games because they will just look at stats to make a determination, and that gut feeling will be removed because it’s too risky to go against stats. It sounds logical to me. I like O’Dowd.

    If DeRosa gets the Bench Coach job for the Cubs, why wasnt he good enough for the Mets? The guy is very intelligent and charismatic. Hes another guy I like on that set. Heck, I like almost all those guys and sometimes even Harold Reynolds. Come to think of it, if you talk baseball I like you. Wow, I’m whipped…

    • Mike Walczak
      December 14, 2018 at 7:05 am

      I agree with the analytics comment. Maybe they can program R2D2 with AI and put him in the dugout. Next will be using analytics for players to choose a different bat against different pitchers.

      It removes a lot of the fun and emotion of the game.

      A lot of what baseball is, is hope. Your favorite player gets up in an important situation. You cross your fingers and hope he delivers. You hood your breath and there goes the base hit to left!!

      Oh, but wait, let the analytics in. In the same situation, analytics tell you to use a pinch hitter. You hope again. Hitter B goes down swinging. Game over.

      • MattyMets
        December 14, 2018 at 9:20 am

        Mike W, I agree completely. I didn’t play stratomatic growing up. I played baseball. I knew stats from back of the baseball cards and newspaper sports sections but for me it has always been more about watching and rooting than studying.

    • December 14, 2018 at 9:19 am

      O’Dowd is better than Bowden but that’s like saying Rice Krispie Treats are better than Sugar Cookies when they both are empty calories that don’t even taste good.

      People who get by on charm and BS are threatened when someone uses any type of science or logic as an approach. So they look to discredit that approach whenever possible. Fewer people will watch games? That’s downright laughable and demonstrably false.

      Look, no one is forcing anyone to know what exit velocity or launch angle or spin rate is. It’s incredibly easy to enjoy the games on your terms. If you want to watch the game to see the beauty of a 6-4-3 DP or a pitcher who gets by with 85 mph stuff or whatever else appeals to you — you can quite easily do that.

      What you can’t do is stay stupid stuff and expect BS to be unchallenged. You can’t say something like – adding Robinson Cano will mean 10 extra wins for the Mets this year.

      • TexasGusCC
        December 14, 2018 at 9:35 am

        He didn’t say fewer people will watch, he said people will watch less baseball to make decisions. This is about decision making, and he’s right. Fangraphs is the tool of choice when evaluating because it gives us a way to compare. It isn’t opinion based as much. Nowadays the argument of whether Mantle, Mays or Snider is better would be settled by WAR, RC+ and OPS.

        • December 14, 2018 at 9:55 am

          My apologies for missing your/Dowd’s original point.

          But if we look at today’s baseball fans watching less baseball, it’s impossible to know A) If that’s true and B) If it is true, if it’s because of what he claims. I don’t think the claim is true but let’s pretend that it is. Who’s to say the reason? Maybe it’s because the games used to be on free TV and now they’re on pay stations that not everyone has. Maybe it’s because instead of fewer than 10 channels, most people have 50 or more channels to choose from. Maybe instead of watching sports, they’re binge-watching the latest Netflix show. There are a bunch of possible explanations for this alleged drop – yet Dowd claims he knows the answer. It’s a BS opinion masquerading as fact.

          I can only speak for myself. I watch more baseball now than I did in any previous era. I watch more basketball and watch fewer hours of football. But I’m not going to extrapolate from my own experiences and claim to speak for the world.

          • TexasGusCC
            December 14, 2018 at 1:41 pm

            On O’Dowd’s comment, on one hand I understand your point since I watch baseball because I love it, but I watch fewer non-Mets games during the season than I used to because of work and stuff; on the other hand if it’s trade deadline time, I find myself using analytics to compare two players rather than trying to make time to catch games to actually see them. I realize that’s the lazy way so I’m not proud of that reality.

        • MattyMets
          December 14, 2018 at 3:49 pm

          Gus, that’s a great point. There are still intangibles. Someday, perhaps WAR will be replaced by an overall player quality score (PQS) that factors in injury risk, leadership/clubhouse personality, etc. it could be revisited every spring training and could be a collective of the previous 3 year’s production, with +/- for intangibles. For example, Granderson gets some bonus points for being a good teammate and citizen while Mejia might get knocked down a few points.

      • Mike Walczak
        December 14, 2018 at 12:35 pm

        Thanks Matty

        When Cano hits a bomb next season, to win a game, I experience the thrill of that long home run and the emotion of a big win, I don’t sit there and say, holy crap, his launch angle was 30% and his exit velocity was 102.

        As a kid, I saw Dave Kingman hit a moon shot into the upper deck at Shea. I loved it. It was a long home run. Sure, the team was bad and he hit .207, but I didn’t care. My guy hit a blast.

        On another note, we are hearing all of this spin rate stuff. So and so has a spin rate of 2600 revolutions per minute. How many fastballs take a minute to get to the plate ?

        • TexasGusCC
          December 14, 2018 at 10:04 pm

          LOL, nice job Mike! You’re right! At .4 seconds a fastball, 2600 rpm’s is only 17 revolutions. So, who counted them?

  5. December 14, 2018 at 11:49 am

    Jeter wants Major League pieces for two reasons— He has fans and a ballpark to fill, and he needs to “show” something other than the germanating 18 and 19 year olds. Also, Conforto and Nimmo are guys who have control and forward value—trade deadline pieces that can be “re-gifted”.

  6. December 14, 2018 at 6:32 pm

    Something that I haven’t seen anywhere . but throwing this out there for thoughts:

    Realmuto and James Nelson (3B – their 15th ranked prospect) to Mets

    Rosario, Dominic Smith, Marlins select one catcher from TDA, KP, or Nido, and either Bobby Wahl or Tim Peterson.

    Who says no?

    • Chris F
      December 14, 2018 at 6:15 pm

      Miami. That wouldn’t even get a response.

    • December 14, 2018 at 7:18 pm

      I agree with Chris that Marlins say no.

      But if I was running the Mets, I wouldn’t offer that deal, at least not now. BVW keeps talking about not making a trade that fills one hole and creates another and if they trade Rosario, that’s what happens. I like Gimenez but it’s hard to imagine that he’s ready to play in the majors right now, especially on a team with playoff aspirations.

      I try to get one of the FA catchers on a 1 or 2-year deal and if that fails, I look for Realmuto as a mid-year acquisition if the playoffs are a possibility.

      • December 14, 2018 at 8:30 pm

        I assume the part you wouldn’t offer is Rosario at all. I also assume by that thinking that Nimmo or Conforto are off limits as well under that thinking.
        My thinking on this is that the positives that Realmuto can offer – arguably the best player at his position in the league – and a solid middle of the order right handed bat fills a much larger hole than the one created by trading Rosario. Trading an outfielder at this point, even for JTR, seems really insane. A catcher/hitter of Realmuto’s caliber, then obtain a glove first shortstop overall strengthens the team.
        From a financial perspective, this* seems by far the best answer – Grandal is not going to sign for less than $32M over two years . and probably will not sign for two at all. Possibly Ramos will, but defense is the issue there.
        * This = a trade for Realmuto using Rosario as the centerpiece. If Miami holds out for what the rumors are that they are asking for, they will lose him to free-agency in two years for nothing.

        • Mike Walczak
          December 14, 2018 at 11:08 pm

          If I am the Marlins, I would trade Realmuto to the Padres or Dodgers and get back Mejia or Ruiz, plus other pieces. My gut tells me the Dodgers get him.

      • TexasGusCC
        December 14, 2018 at 9:06 pm

        Brian, Grandal seems to want 4/$70 and Ramos 3/$40. The appeal in Realmuto is he is cheap and allows you to add another piece. This team is always weighing their money, but then again, that’s how they roll.

        • December 14, 2018 at 9:38 pm

          They can ask for that in December. Let’s see what happens when late January rolls around.

    • TexasGusCC
      December 14, 2018 at 9:03 pm

      69, the Marlins just hang up. At this point in his career, Smithbis pretty much a throw-in. All the others have no value except for Rosario. They have no value because none of them have upside and which one of those guys would you want if they weren’t on your team? So, it’s pretty much Realmuto and Jansen for Rosario. I don’t know a thing about Jansen and already there’s no chance. Sorry for the honesty.

    • December 15, 2018 at 1:06 pm

      Rosario and Every smelly Clam in the Bushel for Realmuto?

  7. TJ
    December 14, 2018 at 9:04 pm

    We all know Realmuto would fit perfectly on the Mets, but the Mets don’t have enough assets to get him without compromising the 2019 squad in ways that will be hard to replace. At the same time, they really don’t need to rush. Yes, others are interested in the Mets’ plan B or plan C, but Grandal doesn’t thrill me at big money. We also get that what they do at C will impact what they do for another bat, and vice versa. So, we’ll just have to see who blinks first. What actually concerns me most is Realmuto going to the Braves or the Phillies. The Braves, specifically, as they have the propsects to make the deal, and putting Realmuto on that squad and adding a legit closer will make then awful tough to beat.

    What does concern me is the posture they are taking with the bullpen. This can be handled independent of the CF and OF/bat issues unless money is an option. And, despite all the hot air from Brodie and Jeffy about being all in and money being freed up, we see Familia with a backloaded contract and the GM saying he doesn’t see them in for another big bullpen arm. So, call me crazy, but as a battered Met fan, I still am of the opinion that this ownership will be cutting corners until I see actions that suggest otherwise. The pen is still very thin, despite two big time arms at the back end.

    • Chris F
      December 14, 2018 at 9:27 pm

      Hence you make moves by trading. Rosario is easy to lose (well, not easy…) but you can get a cheap defensive first SS to fill in (hole filled). The thing is all “holes” are not created equal. In my eyes, catcher is the general, and any chance to bring a leader in if that caliber is worthy of serious expenditure. quality OF come along every year. Same with most IF spots. Im ok filling a big hole and creating a “small” hole, or one that can be easily filled.

      • December 14, 2018 at 10:20 pm

        Chris . I agree with your statement . . In your opinion, is there anything the Mets have now that would merit a trade for Realmuto? (I guess my opinion or D. Smith is still higher than others ..a former number one pick that certainly didn’t do anything for himself last spring, but he is still young – I think with a change of scenery and having a position to play, he can become a solid major league player.) Miami is looking for a left-handed first-baseman – comes cheap with upside . . it will be interesting to see who they finally fill that with – Lucas Duda??? I’d take Smith.

        • Chris F
          December 15, 2018 at 11:29 am

          I do 1969. First off, I think the chance to capture Realmuto now is a huge plus, and potentially the groundwork for an extension. Im a catcher believer. Big time. Roll through WS winners, and see how many teams with bad catchers win. Posey, Molina, Perez, Contreras…even Napoli was a big deal. In our own shop you have Grote (who Johnny Bench famously said: “If Jerry Grote were a Cincinnati Red, I would have been a third baseman”.) and Carter, but dont forget Piazza. Id say 2015 was an aberration for the Orange and Blue, but TdA was good at the time. Realmuto is a CAA client, and they tend to be open to extensions.

          To me the crux of this is just what the Marlins covet most. Im fine with a major leaguer and a top end minor leaguer. So I think Rosario, a pitcher, and someone in A- gets it done. Also if I were Jeter I could see Nimmo (or Conforto) and Gimenez getting it done. I would prefer the first package from out side. Ive slowly become a fan of Nimmo and Ive always liked Conforto. I think the second package would be harder to do, but worth it.

          Realmuto has plus plus skills and growth potential. If you want to get them most out of a dream starting staff, why not put behind the plate a general at the same level, who by the way has a 38% caught stealing and one of the best pop times in baseball. Doesnt hurt you get silver slugger offensive production and a 34% on base out of C. In my world that plays…big time.

          It would hurt to trade a your star-potential OF, not to mention Gimenez. That said, I do it because I believe in catcher that much.

          • December 15, 2018 at 1:53 pm

            Thanks Chris. . good stuff – i agree with you in full there. As far as the ‘hole created’ goes, i think trading one of the two outfielders creates a bigger hole than Rosario.

            The other consideration here is financial. Trading for Realmuto (a better option as a player) or signing Grandal, potentially leaves the budget more open for a possible run at Arenado next year.

  8. TexasGusCC
    December 14, 2018 at 10:11 pm

    Yesterday on MLBN in reference to Manny Machado, Mark DeRosa says that whoever wants Machado should make a deal for his brother in-law. Greg Amsinger asks, “you mean go get Yonder Alonso”? DeRosa replies “Yes, you get his own people there so he knows he will be comfortable everyday in your clubhouse. For sure that will appeal to him”. Tonight the White Sox traded with Cleveland to acquire Yonder Alonso.

    I’m telling you: I like that guy DeRosa… Why wasn’t he interviewed for bench coach? You’re giving me Riggleman? Recycling coaches? smh

    • MattyMets
      December 14, 2018 at 11:54 pm

      Gus, you gush over DeRosa like Brian over den Dekker.

      I’ve got my fingers crossed that the Dodgers will swoop in and make the trade for Realmuto before BVW breaks up the team in a desparate attempt to bring another former CAA client to Queens. I know he’s not quite as good, but Grandal makes so much more sense.

      • TexasGusCC
        December 15, 2018 at 2:29 am

        With you Matt on Grandal. Yes, major guy crush on DeRosa; smart guy.

  9. JImO
    December 15, 2018 at 1:13 pm

    Would everyone agree that Devin Mesoraco was a complete bust?

    • TexasGusCC
      December 15, 2018 at 12:59 pm

      Jim, the Mets got him for a player they were cutting, so essentially he was free because the Reds paid his salary while the Mets paid Harvey’s salary. Although when Mesoraco got here, after a few games the Mets recalled Nido from AA so that Mesoraco can teach him how to prepare for games. Think about that: The Mets brought a catcher from another organization to teach their young catcher how to prepare. Plus, he was good early on but fell off the last month due to (what else?) injury.

      • JimO
        December 15, 2018 at 1:31 pm

        TG: do you think the team considers him an unusable option for 2019?

        • TexasGusCC
          December 15, 2018 at 8:28 pm

          I think they prefer an upgrade, a reliable upgrade. That’s why we don’t hear anything about Ramos; Ramos doesn’t fit either.

          It’s Grandal because the Braves are giving up strong prospects for Realmuto.

          • Chris F
            December 15, 2018 at 9:45 pm

            the full disaster…

            • TJ
              December 15, 2018 at 11:09 pm

              Realmuto to Braves would be a nightmare.

            • Chris F
              December 16, 2018 at 11:09 am

              Good news is that morning updates say that is not likely. They were doing due diligence, but the trail cooled off after signing McCann.

              We need to get Realmuto.

  10. TexasGusCC
    December 16, 2018 at 2:35 am

    Eureka Batman, I solved the riddle!

    Mets get Realmuto and Wil Myers
    Padres get Matz and David Peterson
    Marlins get Conforto and a prospect from the Padres

    Why Conforto? I looked at his peripherals. The first thing I noticed was in his wonderful second half last year, his K% was over 33%; his swing gets quite long. Then I saw that his RF play is not very good. He’s a left fielder, but Cespedes is better. Myers plays in the Grand Canyon and hitters’ cemetery, plays a good RF and hits right handed. The Mets already know who Conforto’s agent is, so why not move him?

    Obviously, the hold up is how much money the big market Padres need to kick in to the small market Mets and how good the prospect needs to be.

    I could live with this. Anybody see holes?

    • December 16, 2018 at 11:34 am

      Interesting idea – let’s assume for a moment that the prospect from the Padres is Mejia (about the minimum that Miami would go for) . that nets out to Matz and Peterson for Myers and Mejia . . I don’t think that happens.

      If SD makes that trade and I’m the Mets, I’m done. No sense flipping Mejia to Miami . .he is one of the top two catching prospects in baseball (and is MLB ready now), and now your outfield is Conforto, Nimmo, and Myers. Just have to fill your fourth slot in the rotation.

  11. December 16, 2018 at 7:07 am

    I don’t know the Padres at all…Matz and Peterson is what they get for Wil Myers and a Prospect ()I assume a good one)…and you think they’re sending money to the deal.

    The Marlins get Conforto and a Prospect….. again, that probably needs to be a knock out prospect from the Padres

    Sounds like pretty heavy lifting for the Padres to Get to big “Ifs” in Matz and Peterson.

  12. Chris F
    December 16, 2018 at 5:16 pm

    Welcome to Flushing Wilson Ramos! I hope you remain healthy and damage the crap out of the NLE.

    Not my first choice, but I am tickled pink to have professional catcher behind the plate. Added plus in not losing draft picks or prospects.

    TdA looks very expendable IMO.

    • Eraff
      December 16, 2018 at 5:55 pm

      Yay Ramos!!!!

      • MattyMets
        December 16, 2018 at 5:58 pm

        Check for new blog post

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