7:30 a.m. Bryan Hoch of MLB.Com and Bombers Beat (link at right) has a comparison of the packages offered the Twins by the Red Sox, Mets and Yankees. If you were Bill Smith, which one would you take? Would you take any of them or just keep Santana and see where you are and what happens at the trade deadline? If you are Santana, to whom would you waive your no-trade?
MLB Trade Rumors reports that Texas is close to signing P Jason Jennings. Jennings is coming off a torn tendon in his elbow which required surgery last August. Jennings went 16-8 as the 2002 Rookie of the Year, but hasn’t had a winning season since. Granted he was with Colorado before he went to Houston in 2006, but only once since 2002 has his ERA been under 5.00.
MLBTR also reports the Yanks interest in Mike Cameron (and the A-Rod endorsement, mentioned some posts ago). Should this happen, what happens with Melky? Does the Santana deal go through? Is Melky then used in another deal if the Yanks decide not to pursue the Santana deal (like, perhaps, a deal for a lefty reliever like Damaso Marte?) Would the Yanks risk putting Johnny Damon and his arm in CF for the first 25 games of the year? Remember Cameron will start 2008 with a 25-game suspension for testing positive for a banned stimulant.
The righty hitting Cameron is 35 and has three Gold Gloves. A two-year deal should be sufficient—enough for Austin Jackson (21) and Jose Tabata (19) to develop. His average would be less than Melky’s (.250 as opposed to .280) but he would give righty power to complement A-Rod (probably .250-20-80 as opposed to Melky going .280-7-70), good defense, and steal more bases than Melky (probably 20 to Melky’s 12-15). Of course he would cost more. Would the cost be worth it? I think the answer to that is only found in who you would get for Melky. Cameron’s positives? Power, experience, Defense, Righty bat to complement a lot of lefties. Negatives? The suspension, age, money, and a TON of strikeouts (160 last year). Cameron hit .242-21-78 with 18 steals in 23 attempts for the Padres last year. He had 67 walks, but also those 160 Ks. His 162 game career average is .251-22-82 with 28 steals and 156 strikeouts (OPS+ 106; Melky’s is 90). I wouldn’t do this if I were the Yanks unless they have a plan in order which means dealing Melky for help.
The question is, outside of the Santana deal, do they have another deal in place in which Melky is part of it?
Update, 3 p.m. Jacobs Field in Cleveland has been renamed. It will join the corporate brigade and now be called Progressive Field (Progressive Insurance). I hope Yankee Stadium never gets a corporate name. It just wouldn’t be right.
As for the former Jacobs Field, it would have been interesting to hear Yankees fans ideas on what the new name should be. After the attack of the midges in Game 2 of last year’s ALDS, some of the proposed names would have been interesting, and probably unprintable.
Update 4:30 p.m. MLBTR is reporting from Ken Rosenthal of Fox that the Brewers have signed Cameron. The Brewers were looking at a couple of CF, including 40 year old Kenny Lofton.
There are also reports of the A’s possibly dealing Mark Kotsay to Atlanta. In just 56 games (206 AB) last year, Kotsay hit .214-1-20 (OPS + 57). Kotsay is 32 and a .282 hitter (OPS + right at the league average, 100). If he can get back to form, he can possibly give .282-10-60. It would be another “dump a player for prospects” move for the A’s.
11 p.m. In a sign that the Kotsay deal may be done soon, the A’s signed OF Emil Brown. The 33 year old Brown hit .257-6-62 (OPS+ 68) for KC last year. Despite a bit of an off-year, the 62 RBI still led the team. It was the third consecutive year Brown led the Royals in RBI. In 2005 and 2006, Brown drove in over 80 runs as he posted OPS+s of 113 and 109 while hitting in the .280s with 17 and 15 HR. Those last three years are the only years of Brown’s MLB career that he has had more than 150 AB in a season. 2005-2007 symbolized a comeback for Brown, who played in the majors from 1997 to 2001, then was out of the majors for all of 2002-2004.
Update, 1/12, 8:20 a.m. Here is an interesting article by ESPN’s Jim Caple:
Are you aware that no starting pitcher who has started his career after 1967 has yet made the Hall of Fame? Dennis Eckersley doesn’t count. Although Eck began his career as a starter (and won 20 for the 1978 Red Sox), he is in the Hall primarily for his relief work.
If you like seeing pictures and/or diagrams of old ballparks now no more (which the original Yankee Stadium will be soon) here is a site worth your while: