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  1. If I had to guess, I’d say AA will make another swap before all is said and done. That bullpen doesn’t make a whole lot of sense.

    Comment by Telo — January 25, 2011 @ 7:04 pm

  2. The Rangers also have Matt Treanor, who should stays above Napoli in the depth charts at catcher (especially after looking at Beyond the Box Score’s 2010 Catcher Defense Rankings). Hopefully, us Rangers fans won’t see much of Mike behind the plate.

    Comment by Rangers Fan Matt — January 25, 2011 @ 7:09 pm

  3. i.e. Dotel, most pitchers, especially relievers, struggle against left hand pitching yet that often doesn’t affect they way they are deployed on the mound. :)

    I kid of course.

    Comment by Brad Johnson — January 25, 2011 @ 7:12 pm

  4. With Rauch, Dotel, Frasor, Camp, Jansen – I could see that making room for Jo Jo Reyes and Purcey in the Pen. I think the league has figured out Carlson and Roenicke just isn’t effective, especially against lefties. Jo Jo hopefully could be the answer vs lhb this year.

    Comment by Dave — January 25, 2011 @ 7:20 pm

  5. the last major move i can se AA making is signing russel branyan. Under this scenario, lind can dh, encarnacion can platoon with branyan and bautista can play third, with juan rivera in left field and snyder in right. Option two could be bautista in right, snyder in left, rivera splitting time with branyan in the dh role, lind at 1b and encarnacion at 3rd.

    Comment by will — January 25, 2011 @ 7:20 pm

  6. I think carlson is quite good against lefties…

    Comment by jkjkljlk — January 25, 2011 @ 7:33 pm

  7. AA is gathering all cheaply-acquirable relief pitchers. It’s a pretty awesome strategy – either trade them at the deadline or offer them arbitration after the season. Both are good options. Because he signed so many, AA will have a large portion of a small market (RPs) available at the deadline. And relievers are chronically overvalued in terms of the comp. picks they net.

    Comment by jordan — January 25, 2011 @ 7:58 pm


    watch out for the blue jays….

    ….in 2013

    Comment by will — January 25, 2011 @ 8:22 pm

  9. I think AA is trying deal his surplus of really good to elite RPs if they (most likely) fall out of contention. They have a very good team on paper but defense will be the Archilles heel. If they sign Russel Branyan and he somehows stays healthy and effective, The Jays may just have a shot at the wildcard.

    Comment by Kampfer — January 25, 2011 @ 8:24 pm

  10. doesn’t it though? healthy competition in the pen?

    Comment by will — January 25, 2011 @ 8:24 pm

  11. Vernon wells for Napoli and Rivera? Napoli for Frank Francisco?

    What is heck is this? These are like fantasy baseball trades.

    Comment by Scott — January 25, 2011 @ 8:27 pm

  12. You are assuming that comps will be in the cards for next year of course

    Comment by BobZ — January 25, 2011 @ 8:31 pm

  13. …..defense and the fact they do not get on base well at all, and they traded their best pitcher…I don’t see playoffs in 2011

    Comment by BobZ — January 25, 2011 @ 8:33 pm

  14. Hah. very true! AA is pulling off some crazy things this off season.

    Comment by matt — January 25, 2011 @ 8:37 pm

  15. On base issues are the result of Murphy’s batting strategy with waiting on your pitch in an at bat. And trading their best pitcher. Marcum was not their best pitcher. Probably their 3rd best. 4th even maybe with how well Cecil played

    Comment by ddriver80 — January 25, 2011 @ 8:43 pm

  16. Its like AA played the Wells trade into fear of not enough offense for the Rangers.

    Comment by ddriver80 — January 25, 2011 @ 8:44 pm

  17. Ricky Romero is still there.

    Comment by Benjamin — January 25, 2011 @ 8:46 pm

  18. Right, the assumption that Napoli is going to get 200 ABs at catcher is quite optimistic. Wash and Ryan value catcher defense, which is why Treanor and his really awful bat played so much last season. He’ll get plenty of AB’s, but I think ironically this deal just pigeonholed him as even more of a DH who can catch occasionally than that perception was in Anaheim.

    Comment by Paul — January 25, 2011 @ 8:50 pm

  19. Carlson throws to righties and lefties pretty evenly. 4.25 career xFIP vs. L and 4.39 xFIP vs. R

    Comment by ddriver80 — January 25, 2011 @ 8:55 pm

  20. It may look like that, to people who think Mike Napoli is underrated.

    Comment by Adam R — January 25, 2011 @ 9:03 pm

  21. No, Napoli will primarily platoon with Moreland at first, against tough lefties. So you mean he’s pigeonholed as a platoon first baseman who can occasionally catch or DH.

    Comment by Terry — January 25, 2011 @ 9:07 pm

  22. Off the top of my head, potential blue jays free agents returning draft pick compensation next winter:


    I assume Bautista will either be traded at the deadline (possibly more value than the draft picks) or signed long-term mid-season.

    Comment by Jeff — January 25, 2011 @ 9:14 pm

  23. Assuming that compensation is still in the cards.

    Comment by ddriver80 — January 25, 2011 @ 9:18 pm

  24. Indeed.

    Comment by Jeff — January 25, 2011 @ 9:28 pm

  25. What a terrible trade for the Rangers! If they are serious about giving Neftali Feliz a chance to start, that leaves them with Alexi Ogando as their closer and pretty much nobody as their setup man. Just look at their roster. They have nobody else in the bullpen! They give up the guy who, at worst, was their 7’th inning guy in a Francisco, Ogando, Feliz bullpen, and who might have taken back the closer job if Feliz goes to the rotation for a guy who might get more than 200 AB’s as the RH side of a DH/1B platoon? Maybe AA is a genius after all?

    Comment by DrBGiantsfan — January 26, 2011 @ 12:08 am

  26. Jon Rausch is a “hard throwing” right hander?

    His average fastball speed last year was just a tick under 91mph last year – that’s not exactly a hard thrower out of the pen.

    Comment by Joe — January 26, 2011 @ 12:09 am

  27. The Napoli trade means the Rangers are better positioned to trade Michael Young for something of value (depending on how much salary they eat). They get a DH in Napoli who can also platoon at 1B and C.

    Toronto gets a more than serviceable RP’er for a guy they had little use for, but was simply one of the costs to dump Vernon Wells 86 million dollar contract. A good trade just got better. Lets see what they get for Rivera.

    Blue Jays starting to make me nervous as a Red Sox fan. They might be in a position financially to land Pujols next year, and seems they got a GM with brains.

    Comment by pft — January 26, 2011 @ 12:14 am

  28. But he’s 8 feet tall, that adds at least 5 mph to his perceived velocity.

    Comment by Not David — January 26, 2011 @ 12:42 am

  29. It also pretty much forces Texas to keep Neftali Feliz in the bullpen, unless they can trade Michael Young for a closer. I can’t imagine anybody giving up much for Young who’s defensive inabilities were on full display in the World Series.

    Comment by DrBGiantsfan — January 26, 2011 @ 12:55 am

  30. I wish people would stop saying that Marcum was their best pitcher, and that they won’t be better off with a full season of Morrow and Drabek in 2011. Not to mention Lawrie, who wouldn’t surprise me if he’s at 3B by June.

    Comment by Mick in Ithaca — January 26, 2011 @ 1:24 am

  31. I would assume compensation will remain for contracts ending in 2011, regardless of what the upcoming CBA decides.

    Comment by Mick in Ithaca — January 26, 2011 @ 1:27 am

  32. Another benefit for the Jays is that it seems like AA is content with watching Arencibia catch and Lind play 1B on a daily basis. We’re not making the playoffs this year, so we might as well see what we’ve got with these 2 moving forward.

    Comment by Jesse — January 26, 2011 @ 2:37 am

  33. The new CBA will apply for the 2012 season. The expiration of the contract is not what yields the pick under the current system, it’s the offer of arbitration for the following year.

    The flaw in your assumption is that the comp picks are somehow tied to expiring contracts, but they aren’t. It’s tied to an 2012 arbitration offer (under the current system). Presumably the 2012 arbitration process (and any compensation derived from it) would be under whatever guidelines are set forth in the next CBA that applies to that year…

    Comment by Joe — January 26, 2011 @ 2:56 am

  34. That’s just what his baseball card says. He’s 7’11” tops.

    Comment by ngrimson — January 26, 2011 @ 3:05 am

  35. The Jays have an average or above player at every position but first base. Up the middle D with Escobar, Hill and Davis is especially strong. Snider, Bautista and Rivera have typically provided average D and Arencibia projects to do the same.

    Comment by Grant — January 26, 2011 @ 4:46 am

  36. This is in reply to Joe:

    Yes, but to qualify as a free agent, a player must have 6 or years of service time and an expiring contract.

    So, an expiring contract is a precondition or precursor to the compensation process. So the players listed above are potential sources of compensation picks, which I think was the point.

    And, you’re right–an offer of arbitration needs to be made by the player’s old team to a player by a certain date(and rejected) for the team to gain compensation. I think the major dilemma/issue here is that each offseason, the offer of arbitration needs to be made by late November/early December. If it is made by that time and rejected, the team losing the player will gain compensation picks in the next year’s draft.

    But how will that work next offseason, when the CBA expires in late December and the draft is held in June 2012? I guess I’m assuming that the current system will be in place and teams will still be able to do as they’ve done for the past several years. The new CBA negotiated this year will take effect for 2012 arbitration offers to free agents(in November/December 2012), effecting the 2013 Draft. Or at least that’s how I read it. :)

    Comment by Jim — January 26, 2011 @ 6:30 am

  37. I agree. The Rangers are (obviously) a win now team. They can’t afford to have question marks in the pen. With the glut of DH types on the market and the fact that they don’t need a catcher, why not just sign one of them? Re-up Vlad and hope he returns to his first half success or they could have pursued Manny or Damon. If the Jays strategy is to trade their relievers to a team that needs them at the deadline, FF could be heading right back to Texas next Summer, but this time Texas needs to throw in prospects.

    Comment by Bill — January 26, 2011 @ 6:53 am

  38. But Marcum clearly was their best pitcher, at least for last year. Best WHIP, better K/9 than Romero or Cecil.

    Doesn’t mean he would have been the best this year (though I think it’s likely), but it’s certainly not ridiculous to assert.

    Comment by DL80 — January 26, 2011 @ 8:47 am

  39. Texas clearly is leaving Feliz in the bullpen, at least for this year, if not forever. Unlike the Chapman situation, the Rangers don’t have a lot of money tied up in Feliz pressuring them to start him.

    Comment by DL80 — January 26, 2011 @ 8:49 am

  40. Wells for a bag of balls would still be in the realms of fanatasy baseball

    Comment by Eric — January 26, 2011 @ 9:05 am

  41. Dotel struggles against left handed pitching? is he eschewing the dh for when he pitches?

    Comment by zonis — January 26, 2011 @ 9:09 am

  42. The Rangers could have traded Michael Young already, but seem unwilling to eat a lot of his salary. He’s a great pickup for some team in the $6 mil/year for 3 years or so. $16 mil/year for 3 years? Good luck with that, Rangers.

    The Rangers will keep Michael Young as a utility infielder and backup for the inevitable Kinsler DL stint before they ship Michael Young off with the 20-30 mil another team is going to demand to take him.

    Comment by hunterfan — January 26, 2011 @ 9:23 am

  43. even if they’re not, they’re also chronically overvalued at the trade deadline.

    Comment by chuckb — January 26, 2011 @ 9:38 am

  44. What’s really interesting is how Tony Reagins has helped to increase the gulf between the Rangers and Angels by making his team weaker and the Rangers stronger within a matter of days.

    Comment by chuckb — January 26, 2011 @ 9:40 am

  45. Maybe they should temporarily hire AA to dump his salary.

    Comment by Jeff in So. Indiana — January 26, 2011 @ 10:09 am

  46. Don’t dismiss the possibility of Feliz in the rotation, still. The Rangers like what Ogando can do. Their bullpen is very deep. Guys like Michael Kirkman, Omar Beltre, Matt Harrison, Pedro Strop, Mason Tobin, Eric Hurley, Zach Phillips and Tanner Scheppers are ready or are poised to contribute in 2011. Yoshinori Tateyama, Mark Lowe, and Scott Feldman are also fighting for roster spots behind O’Day, Oliver, and Rhodes.

    Comment by bp — January 26, 2011 @ 10:22 am

  47. I totally agree. It’s true they are a lefty heavy at 1B with both Moreland and Davis, but Moreland hangs in well against lefties (remember the 13 pitch ab against a good lefty in the playoffs, ending with a big homer). This move seems desperate and unnecessary to me, and I really don’t see how it makes them better.

    Comment by Paul — January 26, 2011 @ 11:56 am

  48. That’s an awful lot of question marks. Pretty much every team in the league has a list of talented relief pitchers who have done nothing at the MLB level. Don’t get me wrong, I like a few of those guys, but Francisco was a proven commodity. The probability is that this move weakens their pen, especially since the combined age for the lefties is 179.

    Comment by Paul — January 26, 2011 @ 12:01 pm

  49. Huntington and Co have been doing this for years, yet are nearly universally maligned for such tactics. Me thinks that “AA” is getting the benefit of the doubt after completely man-handling the halos in the Wells deal. If you truly want to compete in the AL East you need players like Napoli on your bench in the event of injury or inefectiveness. Obviously people will argue that the Jays need pitching over offense right now, but this wasn’t the way to do it.

    Comment by Ryan S — January 26, 2011 @ 12:06 pm

  50. My question: how would Francisco have looked in the Angels pen? Assuming the Rangers would have made a trade in their division (it’s not like we’re talking MVP or Cy Young candidates here), it would have been nice from their perspective to have made that trade and kept that boat load of cash parked in their outfield.

    Comment by SteveM — January 26, 2011 @ 12:34 pm

  51. It was always unrealistic to expect Feliz to start this year. His secondary pitches have taken a significant step back from when he first came up as a rookie and he would need a lot of time at AAA to stretch out and refine those again. Realistically, after last year’s (over)reliance on the fastball, the only way chance Feliz had at starting got pushed to 2012 at the earliest.

    Comment by GhettoBear04 — January 26, 2011 @ 1:02 pm

  52. It really looks like Texas might keep Neftali Feliz in the bullpen another year. I think they still have to try him in the rotation though, right? A lot of people surmise that he could end up as a reliever eventually anyways, but the only way to see if he can firm up his secondary stuff further is to allow him an earnest opportunity to join the rotation. Feliz is already a dynamite short reliever but the Rangers, in my opinion, almost owe it to themselves & he to maximize his value.

    Comment by Stairmaster Jenkins — January 26, 2011 @ 1:17 pm

  53. I still think Texas can afford to test Feliz as a starter because of their relief depth. I’m putting alot o faith in Ogando, and despite the age of their lefty relievers, they’re all performing at or near career bests. When you consider Feliz’s upside, making him a starter has the potential of maximizing his value. In the playoffs, it’s good to have guys like Lee, Lincecum, Halladay, etc.. While I like the abilities of CJ, Colby and Tommy, pitchers like Feliz and Holland have the ability to be better. Brandon Webb is the biggest uncertainty in the rotation. Besides Feliz, Michael Kirkman might have the best shot at winning a rotation spot if Webb or Hunter falters or injuries become a factor. Besides, it’s usually much easier to pick up a new bullpen arm (versus a starter) during the season. If either Feliz or Holland can become an elite starter, I can see the Rangers rotation improving upon their AL 3rd best performance from last year. I don’t think most people realize that Cliff Lee worsened the Rangers team ERA in his 15 starts during the 2010 regular season.

    Comment by bp — January 26, 2011 @ 1:48 pm

  54. The only thing Jason Frasor is ‘very capable’ of is blowing saves, throwing straight fastballs, and letting down his team in any high-leverage situation. The quicker that guy is gone or pitching meaningless fifth inning mop-ups the better.

    Comment by Big Jgke — January 26, 2011 @ 3:38 pm

  55. Frasor gets alot of flack that is underved. Is he good in high leverage situations no. But he’s a solid 7th inning arm and occasional set-up man.

    Comment by ddriver80 — January 26, 2011 @ 4:14 pm

  56. I am sure the bluejays are not done dealing. The Jays didn’t want Fraser back and expected him to decline arbitration and get a pick for him. When he accepted arbitration the plan changed to sign him and trade him for a prospect ( my guess is a decent first baseman who is atleast AA by the end of last season so he can play at Las Vegas this season)

    Comment by Phil — February 6, 2011 @ 2:33 pm

  57. I think it might be safe to say now that the Rangers ultimately won that trade.

    RIP 2011 Naps, we loved you so.

    Comment by John — August 30, 2013 @ 1:46 pm

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