The deal makes some sense to me, which may surprise some since I’m a big fan of Chris Manno. First of all, Nats fans should rejoice because this likely means the end of Matt Stairs’ time in DC. With all of the fringy LH hitting OF’s the Nats have (Nix/Bernadina/Ankiel), Gomes will start against lefties and get spot starts against righties. I think what the Nats are really banking on is that Gomes will start hitting with semi-regular playing time (only 7 starts and 31 PA in July) and they can flip him sometime in August if he does so. If not, it’s not like they gave up any blue chippers for him (apologies to Manno, but there is no guarantee his funky delivery will get AA guys out let alone ML ones down the road).
If the Blue Jays made this move, the same people would probably say it’s smart. Sure if you ask the GM he will say he likes Gomes and wants him to stay around, but really he did it for the pick and there isn’t much risk since he’s inexpensive. He’s also fairly useful as a strict platoon player or pinch hitter, but very overmatched as an everyday starter.
the chances are that NO prospect will make the show. The chances that either of these guys can obtain whatever WAR Gomes is worth over the next 50+ games is slim.
I’ll take my .4 war now please!
Garbage prospects (and good ones) are being far to over valued in the league right now. Sure some will be studs but an infinite more will suck.
I presume the Reds were planning on DFAing Gomes (or passing through waivers, however it works) at some point (if they really wanted Alonso up and were happy with the OF mix otherwise), so he’d have ended up being traded for a C-prospect anyhow. Seems like a fair risk for a possible B-pick from the Nat’s point of view, and the Reds get at least something back for a guy they were probably prepared to move for nothing. It’s an unconventional move but looks like a reasonable one for both teams.
Comment by Felonius_Monk — July 27, 2011 @ 7:53 am
What you’re missing is that the value of WAR added is relative to a team’s expected wins and standings. Certainly .4 WAR is useful. But if it only gets you to 79 wins, say, instead of 77, or 4th place instead of 5th in the division, it means nothing. So, yes, the WAR given up in the form of prospects is speculative, in that it may never come to pass. But the WAR gained is *guaranteed* to be worthless. Speculative WAR > No WAR.
I’m really confused. This is a player with 1.2 WAR by the end of July who is paid $1.2 million and might (as you say) resign for $2.5 million for 2012. Aren’t the Nats making out like bandits?
Also, why is a league average wOBA is worthless?
Comment by Barkey Walker — July 27, 2011 @ 9:46 am
The Nats likely aren’t getting a pick out of this deal. As Jack says, Gomes isn’t likely to get multiple years in FA, so he will accept arbitration. I think the most likely scenarios are they flip him in August, or they really hope to resign him (likely through arbitration) and use him as a platoon guy/pinch hitter next year.
Comment by juan pierre's mustache — July 27, 2011 @ 10:44 am
I think the author is pretty clear on that point too… Trade him for a possible pick which you’d have to offer arbitration to him to get, and it’s not a slam dunk that he wouldn’t accept arbitration (I’m betting that he does), then you’ll end up paying $2 million for an OF you don’t want who is taking up a roster spot, and no pick.
Either way I don’t think it matters that much in the grand scheme of things. $2.5 million for a Nix/Gomes platoon isn’t exactly the worst thing in the world; certainly teams, Nats included, have spent more money on more foolish things.
It’s not a good deal because they are flushing money and prospects (though not a lot) for a guy who doesn’t really get them anywhere. When you are rebuilding, you don’t waste any assets on players who can’t help you win in the future, which Gomes in all likelihood will not. All of his WAR this year is tied up in a hot April, just like last year’s was from a hot May. The rest of both seasons he was useless.
Who knows what type of gentleman’s agreement that Rizzo and Gomes could have come to about declining arbitration. Or perhaps Rizzo has some inside information about how Jonny Gomes has an irrational hatred of living in DC, and would never willingly play for the Nationals.
I just hope Rizzo did his research before pulling the trigger on this trade.
We gave up a couple decent prospects for a platoon bat who crushes left handed pitching at the MLB level. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with this trade and it is the whole irrational lovefest with prospects these days that colors people’s analysis. This doesn’t break the bank in the slightest either.
Even if Gomes accepts arbitration having a bench bat that only costs you 2.5 mill and can crush lefties will help out the Nats, The prospects they sent would have had less impact in their careers for the Nats then Gomes will have this season and potentially next season for them.
My initial reaction was, “the odds of the Nats seeing a pick for Gomes is next to nil,” but an arbtration awarded contract is not guaranteed. Let’s use Jack hypothetical $2.5MM award. I believe only 1/5 or 1/6 is guaranteed. If you are Gomes, and the Nats give every indication that you aren’t in their next year plans, would you take $1.5MM guaranteed from another team or the $400K – $500K and the likelihood you are stuck with a minor league contract late in the spring?
Rhinehart is not nor will he ever be a big league player. Chris Manno is a long shot, but he has a chance of becoming a LOOGy someday. If Gomes winds up being a type B free agent and rejecting the arbitration offer, this is a great deal for both sides. Otherwise, I’m on board with everyone else: wtf were the Nats thinking?
Comment by camisadelgolf — July 28, 2011 @ 7:46 pm
Well we have had time to see the progress. Clealy a mistake. Manno at the half at AA has a 2.7 ERA with B/A against about 225-230 . He clearly has a chance to become a very effective LOOGY or middle guy in the future