Trade Targets: Corner Outfield

Continuing our Trade Targets series, here are five corner outfielders who could be available at (or before) the deadline.

PLAYER: Andre Ethier
TEAM: Dodgers
POSSIBLE DESTINATION: Phillies
CONTRACT STATUS: $9.25M, arbitration-eligible after this season (free agent after 2012)
PROJECTED WAR: 1.6

Corner outfield ranks as one of the thinnest positions for available talent, so we’re including a pair of front-line players from teams with ownership problems to lead off.

Frank McCourt reportedly faces a budget crisis with the next round of payroll expenses coming due June 15; more broadly, MLB could prompt the Dodgers to cut salary as the league works to find a new ownership group. Ethier is the team’s third-highest-paid player (behind…Rafael Furcal and Hiroki Kuroda?). He’s also one of the Dodgers’ best players, ranked 7th among MLB right fielders (an insane group that includes out-of-their-mind starts by Jose Bautista, Matt Joyce, and Lance Berkman) in wOBA. UZR hates Ethier (combined -38.3 fielding runs last three years), holding down his rest-of-season projection. Still, if the Dodgers do make Ethier available, he’d instantly become the most sought-after corner OF commodity, both for his bat and having another year left before free agency (albeit at a big price).

So, will it happen? You’d think the Dodgers would sooner try to move less exciting vets like Casey Blake before they hack into their core. Having a MLB team as a ward of the state (or at least under MLB’s close eye) hasn’t triggered any recent in-season fire sales either. The Texas Rangers added one of the best pitchers in baseball in Cliff Lee last summer — as well as veterans like Jeff Francoeur and Jorge Cantu — even as the team was about to be auctioned off in bankruptcy court. Even the downtrodden Montreal Expos didn’t slash payroll when they were owned by MLB and rumored to be contraction targets in 2002; Dealin’ Omar Minaya instead engineered deals for Bartolo Colom and Cliff Floyd, with the Colon deal still ranking as one of the most generous prospect giveaways of all-time. Throw in Ned Colletti’s history of fetishizing veterans and (over)reaching even when on the periphery of a pennant race (see: Carlos Santana for Casey Blake), and it would probably take a big offer to land Ethier.

Still, Ethier would look a hell of a lot better than Raul Ibanez in the Phillies outfield, wouldn’t he?

PLAYER: Carlos Beltran
TEAM: Mets
POSSIBLE DESTINATION: Indians
CONTRACT STATUS: $18.5M, Walk year
PROJECTED WAR: 1.4

One of the most attractive corner outfield options is also one of the most difficult to peg. For the Trade Target series, we’re using rest-of-season ZiPS to project players’ offensive value, then three-year UZR to peg the defense. Of course the problem (well, one of them) in this case is that Beltran played just 145 games in the past two seasons combined. His .274/.363/.514, .379 wOBA start to this season is roughly in line with his .380 wOBA 2008 campaign. But Beltran derived his massive 7.6 WAR that season from uncommon durability (161 games) as well as defensive value that no longer applies (12.4 UZR and a Gold Glove playing center field then, vs. average to below-average defense playing a corner OF slot now).

Still, this rest-of-season WAR projection assumes Beltran misses about a quarter of his remaining games, and that he doesn’t leave Citi Field. A move to, say, Cleveland would plop Beltran into a more favorable park for hitters. If Travis Hafner returns to the Indians lineup at 100%, and Grady Sizemore becomes healthy enough to be a productive everyday center fielder again, you won’t see this kind of deal happen. But based on their track record of the past few years, you can’t bet on both happening.

The key here — other than the health of Hafner and Sizemore — will be money. Even with a fresh cash influx from new minority owner David Einhorn, the Mets probably wouldn’t mind ditching the rest of Beltran’s $18.5 million salary. If he were to be dealt fairly soon and Beltran’s health holds up, a gain of 2 or more wins for the team that trades for him is possible. As with many deadline trades in recent years, the Beltran-receiving team could ask the Mets pick up a significant chunk of Beltran’s remaining salary in exchange for giving up a better prospect (Beltran also has a no-trade clause in his contract which adds another layer of complexity).

A team like the Indians, without a ton of cash to spend that also places great value on young talent, would have to find a middle ground between financial help and not mortgaging the farm. Still, flags fly forever, and the Tribe has a legitimate chance for some big things this season. Beltran could greatly help their cause.

PLAYER: Luke Scott
TEAM: Orioles
POSSIBLE DESTINATION: Rays
CONTRACT STATUS: $6.4M, arbitration-eligible after this season, likely non-tender
PROJECTED WAR: 1.0

Seems like he’s been around forever, doesn’t it? Yet the soon-to-be 33-year-old Scott isn’t slated to hit six-year free agency until after the 2012 season. No matter — he’s a likely non-tender after year, making him a straight rental for a contending team.

Scott’s off to a crummy start this year at .232/.316/.413, .319 wOBA, particularly given his limited defensive value. The highest strikeout rate since his rookie season and the highest swinging-strike rate of his career makes you wonder if his career might already be in decline. On the other hand, Scott hit .285/.368/.535 last year, without any underlying stats looking too far out of whack. That HR/FB rate has a good chance to bump higher from its current career-low of 12.5%, which would help his numbers across the board. The Orioles will likely be motivated to move Scott too, given Nolan Reimold‘s recent (small-sample) emergence and the team’s longer-term outlook (Derrek Lee and Vladimir Guerrero look like crappy off-season signings).

So which team would be the best fit? Ideally a club seeking left-handed sock that could slot Scott at first base and DH as well as left field. The Rays have a bigger need for right-handed hitting, and both Brandon Guyer and Desmond Jennings could be solid internal options, once they’re over the Super 2 hump. Still, the Rays could stand to add power where Casey Kotchman and Sam Fuld primarily offer defensive value (unless you think Kotchman’s going to hit .361 all year). The price for Scott should also be low enough for even the notoriously prospect-clingy Rays to justify a move.

PLAYER: Kosuke Fukudome
TEAM: Cubs
POSSIBLE DESTINATION: Giants
CONTRACT STATUS: $13.5M, walk year (Cubs must sign Fukudome to an extension by Nov. 15 or release him, allowing him to become a free agent)
PROJECTED WAR: 0.6

Fukudome owns one of the weirdest statistical profiles in the game this season. He’d shown modest, accelerating power in his first three major league seasons, but his ISO has plunged to .063 this year. He’d never hit higher than .263 in the the majors before, but he’s at .315 this year, thanks to a sky-high .382 BABIP. He went from a decent gloveman in right field his first couple seasons to below average last year, and he’s on pace to be one of the worst fielders in the game this season, depending on how much you trust single-season UZR figures. But man, the guy sure can walk. Fukudome has hiked his walk rate to a career-best 16.7% this season; he’d rank 8th in MLB if he had a few more at-bats to qualify among league leaders.

So what can kind of market value does an aging, small-to-moderate power, lousy-defense, high-walk, inflated .435 OBP corner fielder with a no-trade clause have on the open market? If the Cubs would be willing to pick up the bulk of his remaining ’11 salary, Fukudome becomes one of the most attractive top-of-the-order candidates on the trade market. He would add a welcome jolt of on-base ability to a Giants team that, with Buster Posey out for the year, needs more help than Brandon Belt alone can provide. They’ve got to do better than the 4th-worst team OBP (.304) in MLB if they’re going to defend their title.

PLAYER: Jeff Francoeur
TEAM: Royals
POSSIBLE DESTINATION: Diamondbacks
CONTRACT STATUS: $2.5M, mutual option for 2012 (in other words, bye-bye, Jeffy)
PROJECTED WAR: 0.4

One of Sabermetria’s favorite whipping boys, Francoeur has always had his uses, even at the worst of times. He’s a career .302/.346/.494 hitter vs. lefty pitching. He’s got roughly league-average range, which along with a great throwing arm make him an above-average right fielder. He gives great quote. And of course there’s this. Are we seeing a legitimate breakout this year, into something more?

Francoeur’s ISO (.212) and wOBA (.363) are at their highest level since his terrific rookie season. He’s still just 27 years old, so a power breakout at this stage is certainly possible. Other encouraging signs: .299 BABIP right in line with his career average, and the lowest swinging strike rate and second-highest contact rate of his career. Still, his groundball rate is up, and much of his production can be linked to a big spike in HR/FB rate. In short…we just don’t know.

Here’s what we do know: The Royals have a ton of excellent prospects rising through the system, including 20-year-old outfielder prospect Wil Myers. After a hot start, they’ve faded badly and look unlikely to contend this season. And Francoeur’s dirt-cheap salary could make him a more likely trade candidate than anyone else on this list.

The Rangers used Francoeur as a platoon man and bench piece on their way to the World Series last year. Arizona would be a perfect destination this year. Gerardo Parra has leveraged fantastic defense and deft baserunning into a successful season. But he also sports a 626 OPS vs. lefties, and neither Xavier Nady nor Willie Bloomquist provide viable platoons. Even with serious long-term debt and hopes for longer-term success, the DBacks could swing a deal for Francoeur without killing their bottom line, or their future.




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Jonah Keri is the author of The Extra 2%: How Wall Street Strategies Took a Major League Baseball Team from Worst to First -- now a National Bestseller! Follow Jonah on Twitter @JonahKeri, and check out his awesome podcast.


45 Responses to “Trade Targets: Corner Outfield”

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  1. ian says:

    I hardly see the Giants as buyers at this point, and they’ve got a surfeit of outfielders already. What would they possibly do with Fukudome when they’ve already got Ross, Burrell, Belt, Rowand, and Schierholtz?

    If anything, I see them as *sellers* of corner outfield talent at the deadline.

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  2. Jonah Keri says:

    Most of those Giants OF suck. At the very least, 3 of the 5 are OBP sinkholes. Quantity doesn’t equal quality (though I might be giving Sabean too much credit for recognizing they have a big OB problem).

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    • ian says:

      I’d say 2 of 5 are OBP sinkholes, but that’s never much mattered to Sabean. And of course quantity ? quality, and Fukudome would be an upgrade over any of those guys, but I just don’t see the Giants as buyers at all.

      They were last or second to last in wRC+ and wOBA and runs scored before the Posey injury, and now that he’s gone, it’s only going to get worse. This is officially a lost season. If they end up as buyers at the trade deadline, I’ll buy you an order of poutine.

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    • quincy0191 says:

      Schierholtz has been playing well of late, but Pat Burrell’s big problem is a loss in power which I think will come back. Torres is (and should be) manning center field, which leaves the third corner to Ross/Schierholtz/Rowand (who shouldn’t be playing, but I kinda wonder what the hell happened to him; he went from a mediocre player to horrible in one offseason for apparently no reason). If Burrell doesn’t pick it up Belt can play left. If NONE of Burrell/Ross/Schierholtz/Rowand/Belt can produce anything, that would be incredibly unlucky and they could pick up an outfielder. But I find that kinda hard to believe.

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      • ian says:

        I think your Rowand storyline is a bit flawed. It’s more that he’s been a slightly below average to average player who’s had 2 really good years (both contract years, interestingly enough) in ’04 and ’07. Success in both years was also BABIP-aided.

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  3. bgrosnick says:

    I just hope the Mets are forward-thinking enough to shop Beltran early, no matter how much money they have to eat in his contract. A bad month at the plate or an injury will dramatically decrease his value, and the Mets aren’t competing with anyone this year.

    I’m a little surprise that you suggested the Indians, for the contract reasons mentioned above. I do think it’d be a nice fit if the team is willing to spend a little, though. Arizona might not be bad either, for the same set of reasons.

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  4. mike wants wins says:

    I hope the Twins manage to deal Delmon Young, peferably in a package with another player, and get a legit prospect/two in return.

    I always thought corner OF was the “easiest” position to develop players….why the dearth? Why are AL LFers hitting so badly this year?

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  5. mike m says:

    luke scott is also playing through an injury and will probably hit the dl at some point…

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    • Ben says:

      Yeah, my guess is the whole torn labrum thing is a bigger concern for teams than his age and/or defensive value.

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  6. FlimtotheFlam says:

    What about Jon Jay of the Cardinals? They have tons of OF depth right now. He can play all 3 OF spots with good defense, has a good OPS (BABIP high) and is cheap.

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  7. Robbie G. says:

    “Still, Ethier would look a hell of a lot better than Raul Ibanez in the Phillies outfield, wouldn’t he?”

    #12 among all hitters in MLB during the month of May in OPS (minimum 75 plate appearances):

    Raul Ibanez!

    Although yes, Andre Ethier would certainly give the Phillies the right-handed bat that they need to balance out that lineup, and he does seem to represent an upgrade over Domonic Brown. However, if the Dodgers are going to have a fire sale, Matt Kemp might be the more appropriate target for the Phillies, if they are after a true Jayson Werth replacement, i.e., a right-handed slugger to bat in the #5 spot.

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    • Eminor3rd says:

      I believe Ethier is a lefty.

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    • joshcohen says:

      exactly. ethier to the phillies makes little sense.

      the phillies (supposedly) don’t have the ability to make a move for an expensive bat without first moving blanton or ibanez’s salary (which IMO is a difficult task) because A. their payroll flexibility is limited and B. it’s been reported that the ownership would prefer not paying the luxury task (which they are 4-5ish MM under).

      then, there’s the problem that ethier is a lefty and the lineup is already very lefty heavy (especially as brown takes more ABs from francisco and mayberry jr). so in that way, it also isn’t a precise fit.

      IMO hunter pence, josh willingham, or even michael morse seem more probable targets for the phillies.

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      • Robbie G. says:

        My bad, you’re right, Ethier is a LH hitter. Which brings us back to attempting to come up with a list of right-handed slugging OFs to replace Jayson Werth and provide much-needed balance to this lefty-heavy lineup that Philly trots out. Some ideas:

        Matt Kemp
        Carlos Quentin
        Delmon Young
        B.J. Upton
        Hunter Pence
        Josh Willingham
        Michael Morse

        As another reader has pointed out, Philly is trying to avoid the luxury tax, so they are going to want to acquire a low-cost guy. They’re also going to need to acquire someone who is not a huge defensive liability as they already have one huge defensive liability (Raul Ibanez) in the outfield. Matt Kemp is someone to consider and may even be your long term solution in CF, as Shane Victorino is a free agent in the near future (this winter, even?) and may end up getting overpaid by somebody out there. The name I keep coming back to is Delmon Young. Minnesota is horrible and likely does not view Young as an essential piece. Young was quite the slugger in 2010, is still in his mid-twenties so may not have peaked yet, and is not cost-prohibitive. Philly should offer one of their many intriguing arms at the Class A level for Young, in my opinion.

        And let’s get off Raul Ibanez’s case here. He had a horrible start but, again, he has the #12 OPS in MLB during the month of May. He’s a perfectly adequate #6/#7 hitter. I do believe that he would benefit from a platoon situation, though. My preferred solution would be this:

        1) Trade a Single A arm for Delmon Young;
        2) Hand Young the everyday RF job;
        3) Platoon Ibanez in LF with Ben Francisco or John Mayberry, Jr.;
        4) Send Domonic Brown back to AAA for more seasoning (mostly so he can get as many at-bats as possible). Can Brown be an adequate CF at the major league level? If the Phillies think this is possible, then perhaps this can be the goal of a final stint in AAA, and Brown can be the projected opening day CF for the Phillies in 2012, after letting Victorino walk.

        If Ibanez’s May is a fluke and he devolves at some point down the stretch, bring back Brown and platoon him with either Francisco or Mayberry in LF, and release Ibanez (or relegate him to pinch hitter status).

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      • Barkey Walker says:

        “Trade a Single A arm for Delmon Young”

        Is there a lower potential trade possible? Gardenhire likes Young, I can’t see him going for less than a good prospect.

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      • Nik says:

        Victorino is signed through 2012. Also, Brown is not going anywhere, he has nothing left to prove in AAA.

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      • Robbie G. says:

        “Victorino is signed through 2012. Also, Brown is not going anywhere, he has nothing left to prove in AAA.”

        In which case Brown is your projected LF in 2012.

        My proposed 2011 outfield:

        LF Raul Ibanez/John Mayberry, Jr. or Ben Francisco (platoon)
        CF Shane Victorino
        RF Delmon Young

        My proposed 2012 outfield:

        LF Domonic Brown/Mayberry or Francisco (platoon)
        CF Victorino
        RF Young

        Whether Domonic Brown is ready for the big leagues right now or not, the Phillies still have an unbalanced lineup and an obvious need for a right-handed slugger, presumably an OF, to stick into that #5 spot in the batting order. And, once the Phillies acquires this mystery right-handed slugger (presumably a RF), then there aren’t enough at-bats available for Brown to justify keeping him on the big league roster.

        My proposed 2011 lineup, after acquiring Delmon Young for a Class A pitching prospect:

        1 Shane Victorino (CF)
        2 Placido Polanco (3B)
        3 Chase Utley (2B)
        4 Ryan Howard (1B)
        5 Delmon Young (RF)
        6 Raul Ibanez/John Mayberry, Jr. or Ben Francisco platoon (LF)
        7 Carlos Ruiz (C)
        8 Jimmy Rollins (SS)
        9 Pitcher

        If a) Young can duplicate his slugging percentage from 2010, b) Utley’s production declines only mildly from 2010 (and if Utley can stay healthy, a big if), and c) Ibanez does not completely fall apart during the second half, then this is a lineup that Philly can, with its strong pitching, win the Series with. And, if Ibanez falls apart, then you call up Brown and platoon him with either Mayberry or Francisco.

        The 2012 lineup mostly looks the same, I’m guessing. Replace Ibanez with Brown. Rollins is presumably going to be better than any of the free agent SS options on the market, so he’s probably going to be your 2012 SS, as well; however, if Rollins’ asking price this winter is unreasonable, then Philly will presumably look to sign a low-cost short term veteran replacement for 2012 and maybe 2013 while looking to find a long term solution by 2013 or 2014.

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    • Ivdown says:

      The fact that you even mention Kemp as a trade target means you probably know very little about how anything works. Kudos.

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  8. Chris B says:

    There’s no way Ethier goes to the Phillies. Aside from the payroll issues after the Lee deal, they would have to give up a significant prospect package which they’re unlikely to do. Also, why no love for Raul? His .958 OPS and 7 home runs in May are more than adequate.

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    • Michael says:

      I agree. The Phillies have limited payroll flexibility and I cannot see them giving up the prospects it would take to acquire Ethier. I actually think Jeff Francoeur is a more likely target for the Phillies due to the low cost (both in salary and the prospects it would take). They could platoon him with Ibanez in LF (despite that not being Frenchy’s ideal OF position) and/or use him in a PH role and DH in inter-league (and hopefully the WS).

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      • Antonio Bananas says:

        KC likes Frenchy. He’s a “clubhouse guy and a good role model for the youngins”. So not only will Frenchy not really makemuch sense on the Phillies because he’s hitting well against the awful AL Central pitching. Put Frenchy against Hanson, Jurrjens, Johnson, and Sanchez most days, and then Greinke, Marcum, Lincecum, Cain, etc on the other days and I doubt he hits well anymore.

        KC will keep frenchy because they like him and he’s cheap and it’s not like they’ll get anything they really need from the trade either.

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  9. Alex Walsh says:

    On what are you basing your assertion that Kosuke Fukudome plays lousy defense? Career 1.5 UZR in right, skewed downwardly by small sample this year.

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  10. Scott_Hayter says:

    Anyone think Corey Patterson’s surprising performance to this point enough to make a team take a flyer on him? Fast with a bit of pop… maybe a middling prospect for him?

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  11. Basil Ganglia says:

    Jonah – I guess you don’t see the Mariners as contenders at all. There isn’t a team in or near the division lead that has a bigger corner OF hole than the Mariners. They should be a candidate for any available corner OF.

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    • Jonah Keri says:

      Basil, maybe it’s just me, but I see the Rangers making a big move now that Hamilton and Cruz are back and healthy. Pre-season, I expected them to win the division going away. Still expect that.

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      • Travis says:

        I’m going to repost something I posted on a Will Venable article a week or so ago:

        CarGo, road, 2010:

        .289/.322/.453

        BB/K: 4.9/28.2

        BABIP: .375

        ISO: .164

        Will Venable, road, 2010:

        .262/.345/.427

        BB/K: 10.9/32.5

        BABIP: .346

        ISO: .165

        CarGo, road, career:

        .263/.312/.412

        BB/K: 6.5/27.3

        BABIP: .333

        ISO: .150

        wOBA, wRC+: .318, 87

        Will Venable, road, career:

        .269/.336/.439

        BB/K: 8.6/28.6

        BABIP: .339

        ISO: .169

        wOBA, wRC+: .341, 116

        Seeing as though the Padres sent him to the minors, would a move by the Rangers make sense? Since they somehow love to not play Napoli consistently, perhaps trade him to play as a 1B, where San Diego has a clear need for this season? Moving Napoli would allow Hamilton and Cruz to get more starts at DH. Love Nap, and wish Texas would start him regularly somewhere, but if they aren’t going to play him…

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      • Basil Ganglia says:

        I have to agree that the Mariners look more like pretenders than contenders. As a Mariners fan, I actually have a certain dread that a flukishly good record will impel them to make a trade to patch a hole for this year. But the trade will be futile for this year and the talent traded will hinder their chances in the future.

        If they are active at all, I hope it would be more of a blockbuster type trade that would address long-term issues and needs.

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  12. sean says:

    did r j anderson put you up to writing about luke scott to the rays?

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  13. Eminor3rd says:

    If the Indians buy at all, I expect it to be pitching.

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    • Jonah Keri says:

      Good call on the Indians likely needing/wanting pitching. This came down to picking a 5th team, essentially. Beltran is a great addition for pretty much any team on paper, but as I mentioned, there are all kinds of other considerations in play here.

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    • Chris says:

      Agreed, but they do need a RH power bat, having guys like Kipnis and Chisenhall coming up wont help their lopsided lineup. Cord Phelps being a switch hitter should help, but I don’t think anyone trusts him with more than a 15 HR pace, not exactly the kind of thump you’re looking for.

      The biggest reasons why this wont happen though is #1. Crowded OF and no where else to put him in the lineup (assuming Sizemore and Hafner’s health), but he could at the very least, play LF when Sizemore needs rest and platoon with Choo/Brantley when Sizemore is in the lineup and #2. Money, the Indians aren’t looking to spend a dime and with recent attendance woes, I seriously doubt that they have the overflowing coffers that Mr. Keri implied in his article.

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  14. Ted Williams Head says:

    BP puts the Mariners Playoff odds at less than 3%, so I think Jonah has you their Basil

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  15. ofMontreal says:

    I think Fukudome to the Yankees sounds pretty good. They could use his OBP tool & defense and wouldn’t freak on the money. I have a feeling they are going to tinker. I also have no idea what they would trade for Kosuke.

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  16. Table says:

    The Dodgers should not go into “firesale mode, they need to lock up Kemp and Kershaw long term. However I am not convinced that Ethier belongs in the Dodgers future. Any long term contract would lock him up past his prime and at a very high price. He is a questionable OF defender, so unless the Dodgers move him to first, his value is damaged. He also struggles to hit lefties which is not something you want from one of your highest paid players.

    If Ethier is traded Kemp, Trayvon Robinson, Jerry Sands, Kyle Russell, Jamie Hoffman, Trent Oeltjen, Scott Van Slyke, and Ellian Herrera will be able to man the outfield in the near future, while Brian Cavasoz Galvez, Angelo Songco, Blake Smith, Carl Landry, Nick Akins, and Jonathon Garcia could arrive a little later. Rather than block all of those guys, by filling an OF spot with an aging expensive firstbaseman, the Dodgers should cash in their chip for some premium prospects at a needy position like 3rd base.

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  17. Matt says:

    If the Giants are buyers there’s no way they want to buy another light hitting corner OF. Ross is an everyday starter, that leaves 1 spot for Rowand, Burrell, Schierholtz, or Belt – none of which are significantly worse than Fukudome, especially when you consider he’s usually hot in April and cold for the remaining 5 months. That’s not even mentioning Darren Ford who will likely get a few starts.

    Maybe you’d take Fukudome over those guys if he didn’t cost anything, but to give up anything of value for him and pay even a portion of that ridiculous salary would be asinine.

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  18. John DiFool says:

    Beltran has a “no arb” clause in his contract, which means nobody’s getting any draft picks for him in the offseason. His injuries have probably pushed him down to the B level however.

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  19. Really? says:

    Ethier to the Phillies has a 0.000% chance of happening. It makes so little sense that I’m surprised Schoenfield didn’t come up with it

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  20. B N says:

    “Still, Ethier would look a hell of a lot better than Raul Ibanez in the Phillies outfield, wouldn’t he?”

    Would he? If we trust the defensive metrics, I’m not sure if either of them are going to look much better than each other in the OF. Ethier would look better than Raul in the DH spot, but that would be a somewhat different proposition.

    I can’t see the Phillies doing the trade, in that light. Raul can still hit enough to be quasi-dangerous and he’s still above average for situational hitting, plus he’s owed millions of dollars. Ethier would be a nice upgrade, but he sure isn’t a 20 million dollar upgrade, which is what you’re talking if you drop Ibanez and pick up Ethier (not even counting the cost of the prospects you lose). Those are probably worth at least $5m.

    So would Andre look better than Raul on the Phils? Sure. But he definitely wouldn’t look $25m better.

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    • B N says:

      Amendment- I misstated on the numbers. The Phillies would be paying more than $25m for a corner outfield position, but only about $12-13m of that would be for the upgrade of Ethier over Ibanez. Either way, that’s a hefty surcharge and would be a big waste of money.

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  21. david says:

    nobody wants fukudome.

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  22. Antonio Banans says:

    I thought the Phillies were pretty tight on money? Their payroll is second in the majors, like 175M plus thy have like 80M locked up in Halladay/Lee/Uggla/Howard next year. So they may want to make sure they have a healthy profit this year. I really don’t see Philly picking up anyone with a salary over 4-5M if even that. Maybe some bullpen arms.

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  23. JP says:

    Jonah, Hunter Pence seems like a pretty glaring omission.
    Yes, he may not get traded before July 31st as Crane isn’t officially in charge yet, but Wade will be listening to offers, and if he can get something he likes, he’d pull the trigger on a deal.

    He is somewhat laking defensively, but Pence could be a solid complimentary piece for a team who feels like they’re on the cusp. He’s got two and a half years left till FA, and has been fairly consistent over his major league career.

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  24. phareastPhils says:

    phils are getting either Quentin or Young…At this point, the twins are likely sellers and the ChiSox could be in a position to trade Quentin for the right deal…Personally, I like Quentin’s power potential, and we know that Ruben was already looking at Quentin back in December as a Werth replacement, but the Sox wanted to hang onto him at the time. So I do think this scenario will be revisited in July. Quentin is on the same sort of contract path as Young as well; becoming a FA after 2012, and will be relatively cheap in his last arbitration year 2012. As the season is going so far, Quentin does seem to be the more attractive option–the guy ONLY ever seems to have Xbasehits. Young has battled some injuries so far, but the guy is still mid twenties and has good career avg against lefties and w RISP, so would def be an upgrade…Brown, Victorino, Ibanez, Young/Quentin may seem a bit crowded, but would give us options with the expanded rosters and more versatile postseason matchups..

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