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  1. Now put ManRam in RF and call it an offseason.

    Comment by BX — December 14, 2010 @ 10:22 am

  2. Obviously the A’s are all about defense, so at their the offensive-only position I think they could have done a lot better. I know Berkman didn’t want to go there, but there are just so many other DH options better than Matsui. Maybe they feel like he’ll bring in more revenue, i.e. people from Asia, but I doubt that would be a significant enough difference.

    Comment by JoeS — December 14, 2010 @ 11:59 am

  3. Now it’s looking like the contract is only $4.5MM, plus a little extra for a translator and a PR guy. Wow. Fantastic deal for Oakland.

    Comment by danmerqury — December 14, 2010 @ 3:02 pm

  4. Lyle Overbay is getting paid more than Matsui next year, that is very odd.

    And I agree the A’s should have went after Manny or Thome to DH.

    Comment by PL — December 14, 2010 @ 3:15 pm

  5. I disagree. I don’t know who is out there who would both 1) be a better player and 2) willing to sign a 1-year deal with Oakland.

    Vlad had a similar value season (less OBP, more SLG in a better hitters environment), but tanked in the second half.

    ManRam and Jim Thome both both want to play beyond 2011, but having their numbers deflated in Oakland could hurt their chances of finding a good home in 2012. I guess we’ll know more when we see what they sign for.

    The market is pretty bare after that: Johny Damon? Jason Giambi? Nick Johnson on an incentive-laden deal?

    Now that I see the cost – seems like a very good deal.

    Comment by J.M. — December 14, 2010 @ 5:31 pm

  6. It’s basically, give or take a few hundred thousand, what Jack Cust would have gotten (although retaining Cust, because he was under 5 years’ service time, would have given them an implied option on his production for 2012 as well).

    So: Is Hideki Matsui better than Cust? I don’t know, but I doubt it given their respective ages and health statuses. It’s a fairly good deal in a vacuum, but I think the A’s came out a loser on the sequence of moves.

    Comment by Paul Thomas — December 14, 2010 @ 9:34 pm

  7. Both Thome and Manny would be fine in Oakland. Manny showed he can succeed in a big, sea level park and Thome’s massive shots aren’t getting contained there. It is marginal/line drive power hitters like Holliday that have problems in Oakland.

    Comment by AA — December 14, 2010 @ 9:47 pm

  8. Given his recent history of decline, Cust isn’t as valuable as Matsui. Plus, Matsui has a much more neutral platoon split, making him far more valuable in an offense only position. If he was forced into the field, Matsui is also the better fielder, though neither Matsui nor Cust should be playing the outfield for different reasons.

    Finally, and this is one of the few insightful things I have ever picked up from Harold Reynolds, Matsui is significantly more marketable than Cust. He will carry a halo (no pun intended) effect that likely helps drive revenue beyond his marginal WAR value.

    Comment by AA — December 14, 2010 @ 9:52 pm

  9. Matsui is if anything: consistent. His lifetime OPS+ is 123 and his last 2 seasons have been 123 & 124. He went berserk in the 2nd half last year, his sOPS+ in the first half was 100 and it rocketed up to 163 in the second, which is not how he usually works.

    Another thing is he hits very well at all four AL West parks, owning a career OPSs of 985, 954, 840 & 815 at all 4 parks in decent sample scales.

    Hey, if he somehow figured it out and is going to be a 950 OPS guy like he was in the second half, then Beane found his next Big Hurt and the A’s are going places. I personally hated on Matui for quite some time, but he really isn’t a bad signing at all. The $4.25MM/1 year deal makes it very easy to stomach. I like that Harden, Duschcherer and McCarthy might all going to be in the mix next year. If only Beltre would come to them…

    Comment by PL — December 14, 2010 @ 11:24 pm

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