Friday, January 19, 2018

MLB news: Blue Jays acquire Grichuk

              For the second time this offseason, the Toronto Blue Jays have acquired a starting position player from the St. Louis Cardinals. First, it was SS Aledmys Diaz going to the Blue Jays. Now, it's OF Randal Grichuk going north of the border in exchange for RHPs Dominic Leone and Conner Greene.

             For the Blue Jays, they lost Jose Bautista and have only added Curtis Granderson. Getting another outfielder really helps the situation. Grichuk, who is known for being the draft pick directly before Mike Trout, isn't a bad player. He has some value and can help Toronto in 2018. They give up a fair price for Grichuk, but it's not as good a deal as the Diaz trade was for them.

             Grichuk, 26, had a .238 batting average, 22 homers, 59 RBIs and six stolen bases in 442 Plate Appearances in 2017. In his MLB career, all in St. Louis, Grichuk has a batting average of .249, with 66 homers, 182 RBIs and 15 stolen bases in 1386 Plate Appearances.

            For the Cardinals, they already have three outfielders in Marcell Ozuna, Dexter Fowler and Tommy Pham, from left to right. Grichuk is too good to be a fourth outfielder, so trading him was the best option. They like Leone, and will use them as a late reliever.

            Leone, 26, had a 2.56 ERA, 1.05 WHIP, with 81 strikeouts in 70.1 innings for the Blue Jays in 2017. In his MLB career for the Blue Jays, Arizona Diamondbacks and Seattle Mariners, Leone has an ERA of 3.48, with a 1.32 WHIP and 183 strikeouts in 178.2 innings.

            Greene, 22, has a 4.04 ERA, 1.44 WHIP and 377 strikeouts in 501.1 innings in his minor league career, all in the Blue Jays system.

            I think this is an even trade. The Jays get a much needed outfielder, and the Cardinals get some pitchers.

Monday, January 15, 2018

MLB news: Blue Jays sign Granderson

                The Toronto Blue Jays have signed OF Curtis Granderson to a one year, $5 million deal.

                Granderson was so close to a World Series ring, and you'd think he'd try to go for his first this year, but well, no (I'm a Yankees fan). The Blue Jays, well, aren't the team I'd choose if I would sign with if I was going for a ring.

               For the Blue Jays, they get a much needed outfielder, with Jose Bautista in free agency, and get it cheap, at just $5 million.

              Granderson, 36, hit .212, with 26 homers, 64 RBIs and six steals in 527 Plate Appearances for the New York Mets and Los Angeles Dodgers in 2017. In his MLB career for the Mets, Dodgers, New York Yankees and Detroit Tigers, Granderson has a .252 batting average, 319 homers, 865 RBIs plus 151 stolen bases in 7540 Plate Appearances.

MLB news: Giants acquire McCutchen

                  For the second time this offseason, the San Francisco Giants have acquired the face of the franchise from another team. First, they acquired 3B Evan Longoria from the Tampa Bay Rays, now CF Andrew McCutchen is going to the bay area from the Pittsburgh Pirates in exchange for OF Bryan Reynolds and RHP Kyle Crick, plus cash. Per MLB pipeline, Reynolds was the Giants 4th best prospect, and Crick was number 16.

                   After trading Denard Span in the Longoria trade, the Giants had a very thin outfield. They still need a LF, with McCutchen now in center and Hunter Pence in right. They get a former MVP, who is in need of a resurgence.

                  McCutchen, 31, had a .279 batting average, plus 28 homers, 88 RBIs and 11 steals in 650 Plate Appearances. In his MLB career, only in Pittsburgh, McCutchen has a batting average of .291, with 203 homers, 725 RBIs and 171 stolen bases.

                 For the Pirates, they in the blowing up phase of their rebuild, after trading RHP Gerrit Cole to Houston. They get two prospects, but for your face-of-the-francise, that's just a weak return. They should've gotten more.

                 Reynolds, 22, has a .312 batting average, 16 homers and 101 RBIs and eight stolen bases in 777 career minor league Plate Appearances.

                 Crick, 25, made his MLB debut for the Giants in 2017, and had a 3.06 ERA, 1.21 WHIP and 28 strikeouts in 32.1 innings.

                  I think the Giants win. They literally get a star for just two prospects. The Pirates, once again, get fleeced in a big trade.

NHL news: Ducks claim Brown, Canadiens claim Shaw

            The Anaheim Ducks have claimed RW J.T. Brown off waivers from the Tampa Bay Lightning. They then waived C Logan Shaw, who was claimed by the Montreal Canadiens.

             Brown was waived by the Lightning since he's having an underwhelming season on a great team. GM Steve Yzerman wasn't expecting him to get claimed. But, Anaheim pounced.

            Brown, 27, has scored a goal and three assists for four points in 24 games for the Lightning this season. In his NHL career, all in Tampa, Brown has scored 19 goals and 42 assists for 61 points in 286 games.

           Shaw is a center, but has a horrible 37.7% career faceoff percentage, with a 23.5% in 17 draws this year. With Brown, I guess the Ducks would rather have him, so Shaw was waived. The Habs need a 4th line center if Phillip Danault's injury is serious, which it looks like it is, so it makes some sense.

            Shaw, 26, has scored two goals and six assists for eight points in 42 games this year for the Ducks. In his NHL career for the Ducks and Florida Panthers, Shaw has scored 10 goals and 15 assists for 25 points in 150 games.

NHL news: Sharks waive Martin

               The San Jose Sharks have waived defenseman Paul Martin.

               At 36 years of age, Martin is old, and is falling off. Plus, he has a year after 2017-18 left on his deal, with a $4.85 million cap hit. Plus, he was a modified no-trade clause. It should come to no one's surprise that Martin is up for grabs. Also, he has only played in three games this year. I doubt he'll be picked up.

              Martin, 36, has no points in three games this year for the Sharks. In his NHL career for the Sharks, Pittsburgh Penguins and New Jersey Devils, Martin has scored 50 goals and 268 assists for 318 points in 859 games.

MLB news: Nats sign Kendrick

           The Washington Nationals have signed 2B/LF Howie Kendrick to a two year, $7 million deal. Kendrick's services were acquired by the Nats as a rental in July of 2017.

           Acquiring Kendrick was a surprise to many late in 2017. But, injuries happened, and Kendrick came in handy. His ability to play infield and outfield helps a lot, as versatility is growing in baseball today. A deal that pays a player $3.5 million a year is a huge bargain is baseball today.

            Kendrick, 34, hit .315, with nine homers, 41 RBIs and 12 steals in 334 Plate Appearances for the Nationals and Philadelphia Phillies in 2017. In his MLB career for the Nats, Phillies, Los Angeles Dodgers and Los Angeles Angels, Kendrick has a batting average of .291, with 104 homers, 636 RBIs and 123 stolen bases in 5791 Plate Appearances.

Saturday, January 13, 2018

MLB trade review: Astros acquire Cole

             The Houston Astros have acquired RHP Gerrit Cole from the Pittsburgh Pirates in exchange for 3B Colin Moran, RHP Joe Musgrove, RHP Michael Feliz and OF Jason Martin.

             Coming off a world series victory, the Astros added another ace to their pen. Coming off the worst year of his career, Cole will fit in as the Stros third starter, behind Justin Verlander and Dallas Keuchel, and in front of playoff heroes Lance McCullers and Charlie Morton. Cole, who was thought by many to be going to the New York Yankees, but was nearly dealt on Wednesday, but now Houston was able to land the former 1st overall pick.They didn't give up their 2nd best prospect, Forrest Whitley, but instead their 5th best prospect in Moran. Musgrove was just going to be their 5th/6th starter without Cole, and their 6th/7th with him. Martin and Feliz aren't big names, and were mainly throw-ins.

              Cole, 27, had a 4.26 ERA, 1.25 WHIP and 196 strikeouts in 203 innings in 2017. In his MLB career, all in Pittsburgh, Cole has an ERA of 3.50, a 1.22 WHIP and 734 strikeouts in 782.1 innings.

              For the Pirates, I don't really get why they'd do this trade. They get Moran, their future third baseman, but they also got a 5th starter in Musgrove, a long reliever and Feliz and a minor leaguer in Martin. That's it for the guy they drafted 1st overall in 2011. They could have gotten OF Clint Frazier from the Yankees, which is a better deal for them straight up. Moran is just two years younger than Cole and has a whopping seven for 34 in his MLB career.

             Moran, 25, had a .364 batting average with a homer and three RBIs in 12 Plate Appearances for the Astros in 2017. In his short MLB career, all in Houston, Moran has a .206 batting average with that homer and five RBIs in 37 Plate Appearances.

            Musgrove, 25, had a 4.77 ERA, 1.32 WHIP and 98 strikeouts in 109.1 innings in 2017. In his MLB career, all for the Astros, Musgrove has a 4.52 ERA, 1.28 WHIP and 153 strikeouts in 171.1 innings.

            Feliz, 24, had a 5.63 ERA, 1.56 WHIP and 70 strikeouts in 48 innings. In his MLB career, all in Houston, Feliz has a 5.13 ERA, 1.36 WHIP and 172 strikeouts in 121 innings.

           Martin, 22, has a .269 batting average, 50 homers, 238 RBIs and 74 stolen bases in 1936 career minor league Plate Appearances.

            I think the Astros win this trade. They get an ace, for WAY less than an ace shall cost. Man, I feel like all the sellers are getting ripped off this off-season. First the A's for Ryon Healy, then the Marlins for Giancarlo Stanton, then Miami again for Marcell Ozuna, now it's the Pirates with Cole.

NHL news: Lightning waive Brown

             The Tampa Bay Lightning have waived RW J.T. Brown. If he clears waivers Brown will be assigned to the Syracuse Crunch of the AHL.

             When asked about the move, GM Steve Yzerman said it was about "creating roster flexibility". Brown isn't having a great 2017-18 on a great Lightning team, so it doesn't come by surprise that he was traded. Brown became famous earlier this season when he raised a fist to protest actions from police officers to African-Americans, like Brown. This protest started by former San Francisco 49ers QB Colin Kaepernick, and has been continued on by many, many NFL players, and Oakland A's catcher Bruce Maxwell.

              Brown, 27, has scored one goal and three assists for four points in 24 games this season. In his NHL career, all for the Lightning, Brown has scored 19 goals and 42 assists for 61 points in 286 games.

MLB news: Twins sign Reed

             We have an MLB signing. This is NOT a drill. Yes, in a slow, slow MLB free agent market, the Minnesota Twins have found their probable closer after signing RHP Addison Reed to a two year, $17 million deal. He'll compete with Fernando Rodney, another recent signing, for the ninth inning.

            Reed, one of the few players on the market with closing experience, was the Mets closer in 2017 before being traded to the Red Sox. He also was the closer for the White Sox (2012-13) and Diamondbacks (2014). The Twins had one if the worst bullpens in 2017, so adding Reed, along with Rodney and LHP Zach Duke should help.

            Reed, 29, had a 2.84 ERA, 1.05 WHIP, 19 saves and 76 strikeouts in 76 innings for the New York Mets and Boston Red Sox in 2017. In his MLB career for the Red Sox, Mets, Diamondbacks and White Sox, Reed has a 3.40 ERA, 1.16 WHIP, 125 saves and 425 strikeouts in 402.2 innings.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

NHL trade review: Blackhawks acquire Duclair

                The Chicago Blackhawks have acquired forward Anthony Duclair and D Adam Clendening from the Arizona Coyotes in exchange for F Richard Panik and F Laurent Dauphin.

                The Blackhawks lack two things: depth and youth. They get that in Duclair. Yes, they trade Panik, who has played well with Jonathan Toews ever since coming to Chicago. Clendening won't get much NHL time, though.

                Duclair, 22, has scored nine goals and six assists for 15 points in 33 games for the Coyotes this year.  In his NHL career for the Coyotes and New York Rangers, Duclair has scored 35 goals and 46 assists for 81 points in 190 games.

                Clendening, 25, has two assists in five games for the Coyotes this year. In his NHL career for the Coyotes, Rangers, Edmonton Oilers, Blackhawks, Pittsburgh Penguins and Vancouver Canucks, Clendening has scored four goals and 20 assists for 24 points in 86 games.

                For the Coyotes, Duclair recently requested a trade, so the time had come to deal him. They are able to get an ok winger in Panik, and retain Dauphin, who was traded to Chicago in the Niklas Hjalmarsson trade.

               Panik, 26, has scored six goals and 10 assists for 16 points in 37 games this year for the Blackhawks. In his NHL career for the Blackhawks, Toronto Maple Leafs and Tampa Bay Lightning, Panik has scored 53 points and 54 assists for 107 points in 300 games.

               Dauphin, 22, hasn't played in the NHL this year, and scored three goals, plus an assist for four points in 32 career games for the Coyotes.

              I think the Blackhawks win this trade. They unload Panik's big contract signed this Summer, and get a guy in Duclair who's seeking redemption. Dauphin isn't too big of a prospect, so it's not a big deal.

Saturday, January 6, 2018

MLB news: Blue Jays acquire Solarte

                 The Toronto Blue Jays have acquired INF Yangervis Solarte from the San Diego Padres in exchange for OF Edward Olivares and RHP Jared Carkuff.

                 Solarte is mainly a 3B, but with Josh Donaldson there, X that one of the Solarte chart. His second position, second base, is occupied by the oft-injured Devon Travis, and maybe newly acquire SS Aledmys Diaz. His third position, SS, is occupied by Troy Tulowitzki, then Diaz. So, his role probably will be backup 2B/3B.

                  Solarte, 30, hit .255 with 18 homers and 64 RBIs in 512 Plate Appearances for the Padres this year. In his MLB career for the Padres and New York Yankees, Solarte has a batting average of .267, with 57 homers and 246 RBIs in 2061 Plate Appearances.

                 The Padres have a lot of infielders, and as rebuilders, getting two prospects is a win. Freddy Galvis, Carlos Asuaje, Cory Spangenberg and Chase Headley (who was formerly traded away by the Padres to the Yankees for Solarte) were chosen over Solarte to stay, so Solarte was traded.

                 Olivares, 21, has a .267 batting average, 22 homers, 110 RBIs and 47 stolen bases in his minor league career.

                Carkuff, 24, has a 3.21 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 88 strikeouts and 15 saves in 89.2 career minor league innings.

                 I think the Jays win this trade. I don't see much upside in the prospects, but that's just by looking at the stats, and I could be wrong.

Thursday, January 4, 2018

NHL trade review: Oilers acquire Montoya

                The Edmonton Oilers have acquired goalie Al Montoya from the Montreal Canadiens in exchange for a conditional 2018 4th round pick.

                Montoya is an ok veteran backup goalie, especially for a desperate team. Montoya has barely played this season since he has been dealing with a concussion and last played on November 4th. When he comes back, he can challenge struggling rookie backup Laurent Brossoit for his job.

               Montoya, 32, has a .863 SV% and a 3.77 GAA in four games this season for the Canadiens. In his NHL career for the Canadiens, Florida Panthers, New York Islanders, Phoenix Coyotes and Winnipeg Jets, Montoya has a GAA of 2.63 with a .908 SV% in 159 games played.

                For the Habs, they are sticking with Antti Niemi as Carey Price's backup, mainly because Niemi actually hasn't allowed seven goals a game with the Habs like he did earlier this year in Pittsburgh. They both are veteran goalies, and Niemi has better history, a Stanley Cup as a rookie starter and a cheaper contract. Plus, he's actually healthy.

               Per Chris Johnston of Sportsnet, the Habs get the 4th rounder if Montoya plays in seven more games this season. If not, they get a 5th round pick.

MLB trade review: White Sox acquire Soria, Avilan in three team trade

               In a three team trade today, the Chicago White Sox acquired RHP Joakim Soria from the Kansas City Royals, plus LHP Luis Avilan and cash from the Los Angeles Dodgers, with the cash covering Avilan's salary. The Dodgers received LHP Scott Alexander from K.C., and INF Jake Peter from the Sox. The Royals received RHP Trevor Oaks and INF Erick Mejia from the Dodgers.

               For the White Sox, this deal gives them two relievers to add to their beat down bullpen. In fact, Soria will get a good shot to be their closer. They only gave up Peter in this deal.

              Soria, 33, had a 3.70 ERA, 1.23 WHIP, one save and 64 strikeouts in 56 innings for the Royals in 2017. In his MLB career for the Royals, Texas Rangers, Detroit Tigers and Pittsburgh Pirates, Soria has a 2.86 ERA, 1.12 WHIP, 613 strikeouts and 204 saves in 573.2 innings.

             Avilan, 28, had a 2.93 ERA, 1.39 WHIP and 52 strikeouts in 46 innings for the Dodgers in 2017. In his MLB career for the Dodgers and Atlanta Braves, Avilan has a 2.97 ERA, 1.20 WHIP and 225 strikeouts in 263.1 innings.

             For the Royals, they get two prospects for two relievers. Soria, their closer back in 2007-2011, wasn't that great in his two year return to K.C. Alexander is coming off a nice 2017, but as they enter a rebuild, trading away some relievers is a nice start.

             Oaks, 24, had a 3.64 ERA, 1.25 WHIP and 72 strikeouts in 84 innings for the AAA Oklahoma City Dodgers in 2017. In his minor league career, Oaks has a 3.27 ERA, 1.16 WHIP and 292 strikeouts in 404 innings.

            Mejia, 23, has a .333 batting average with one RBI in 17 Plate Appearances in the Dominican Winter League. In his minor league career, Mejia has a batting average of .279, with 13 homers, 130 RBIs and 101 stolen bases in 1586 Plate Appearances.

            For the Dodgers, they upgrade a lefty reliever from Avilan to Alexander, and get a prospect in Peter in the process. Yes, they give up Oaks and Mejia, but it's not a bad deal.

            Alexander, 28, had a 2.48 ERA, 1.30 WHIP and 59 strikeouts, plus four saves in 69 innings for the Royals in 2017. In his MLB career, all for the Royals, Alexander has a 2.78 ERA, 1.37 WHIP and 78 strikeouts in 94 innings.

            Peter, 24, had a .279 batting average, 13 homers, 49 RBIs and 11 stolen bases in 516 Plate Appearances between AA and AAA in 2017. In his minor league career, Peter has a .282 batting average, 24 homers, 185 RBIs and 44 stolen bases in 1884 Plate Appearances.

           I think everybody wins this trade. The Dodgers get a better reliever, the White Sox get some trade bait, and the Royals sell some relievers. So, everybody wins.