Saturday, May 26, 2018

MLB trade review: Mariners acquire Colome, Span from Rays

             The Seattle Mariners have acquired RHP Alex Colome and OF Denard Span from the Tampa Bay Rays in exchange for RHPs Andrew Moore and Tommy Romero.

              For the Mariners, injuries to their core players, like CF Dee Gordon (we'll get into that later) and 2B Robinson Cano's 80 game suspension have tried to stop the M's from being contenders. This trade shows that they aren't out of it yet. In a division with the Astros and Angels, two very good teams, it will be hard for the team to make the postseason. Colome was the Rays closer, but with Edwin Diaz as the team's closer, Colome will probably be the set up man for Seattle. With Gordon out, Span will temporarily be the starting center fielder, then go to 4th outfielder when everyone is healthy. Span is a pending free agent, and Colome is under team control through 2021.

              Colome, 29, has a 4.15 ERA, 1.48 WHIP, 23 strikeouts and 11 saves in 21.2 innings for the Rays this year. In his MLB career, all in Tampa Bay, Colome has a 3.21 ERA with a 1.24 WHIP, 265 strikeouts and 95 saves in 294.1 innings.

              Span, 34, has a .238 batting average with four homers, 28 RBIs and six steals in 173 Plate Appearances for the Rays this year. In his MLB career for the Rays, San Fransisco Giants, Washington Nationals and Minnesota Twins, Span has a batting average of .282 with 64 homers, 460 RBIs and 182 stolen bases in 5628 Plate Appearances.

              For the Rays, they unload two players, but I think they could have gotten more for them, especially Colome. Moore is a younger pitcher with a very small amount of MLB experience . Romero is a young, lower leveled prospect.

              Moore, who will turn 24 a week from the day of the trade, hasn't played in the majors this year. Last year, his only year, featured Moore with a 5.34 ERA, with a WHIP of 1.15 and 31 strikeouts in 59 innings.

            Romero, 20, has a 2.45 ERA with 54 strikeouts in 44 innings for Class A this year.

Friday, May 25, 2018

MLB news: Red Sox DFA Ramirez

           The Boston Red Sox have designated 1B Hanley Ramirez for assignment, and activated all-star 2B Dustin Pedroia off the 10 day DL.

           Ramirez, who was signed through next year after signing a four year, $88 million deal with the Sox back before 2015. After hitting .330 in April, Ramirez has hit .163 in May, which leads to the DFA. The Sox are still responsible for the $15.25 million left on his contract, but now don't need to pay the $22 million he was owed for 2019. Ramirez was signed along with 3B Pablo Sandoval in that offseason between 2014 and 2015, was brought in to revamp the Red Sox, putting the world in shock. Unfortunately for Boston, both were terrible, especially Sandoval, who never put a full season together in Boston. Ramirez had his hot moments, but overall was pretty bad. Former Red Sox teammate and current hot hitter Mitch Moreland is now the starting 1B. Pedroia will once again be the starting 2B, leaving Eduardo Nunez without a position. Nunez, who is known to play pretty much all positions, could get some reps at first, and possibly platoon with Moreland.

           Ramirez, 34, has a .254 batting average with six homers and 29 RBIs in 195 Plate Appearances for the Red Sox this year. In his MLB career for the Red Sox, Florida/Miami Marlins and Los Angeles Dodgers, Ramirez has a batting average of .290, with 269 homers, 909 RBIs and 281 stolen bases in 7070 Plate Appearances.

Thursday, May 24, 2018

MLB news: Castillo suspended 80 games

           Chicago White Sox catcher Welington Castillo has been suspended 80 games without pay after testing positive for Erythropoietin (EPO), a PED that is in violation of Major League Baseball's Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program. The 31-year old veteran catcher released the following statement through the MLBPA (Major League Baseball Player's Association):

              "I was recently notified by Major League Baseball that I had tested positive for EPO, a substance that is prohibited under MLB's Joint Drug Agreement. The positive test resulted from an extremely poor decision that I, and I alone, made. I take full responsibility for my conduct. I have let many people down, including my family, my teammates, the White Sox organization and its fans, and from my heart, I apologize. Following my suspension, I look forward to rejoining my teammates and doing whatever I can to help the White Sox win."

            Castillo, a first year White Sox player, was signed by the club this offseason to a two year, $15 million deal with an $8 million option for 2020. He was brought in to help young pitching prospects like Lucas Giolito, Reynaldo Lopez, Michael Kopech and Carson Fulmer develop. The White Sox are struggling mightily this year, and are tied with Kansas City Royals for last in not just the AL Central, but the MLB as well. When Castillo returns from the suspension, there will be 35 games remaining in the season. An 80 game period is a long run, and could give the 4 catchers on the 40 man right now (Omar Narvaez, Kevin Smith, Alfredo Gonzalez and Dustin Garneau) a chance to shine, or prospects that are a little lower down, like Zack Collins and Seby Zavala a very small chance, but still a chance, to be called up to the show.

             Castillo, 31, has a .267 batting average, six homers and 15 RBIs in 123 Plate Appearances for the White Sox this year. In his career for the White Sox, Chicago Cubs, Baltimore Orioles, Seattle Mariners and Arizona Diamondbacks, Castillo has a batting average of .259, with 86 homers and 298 RBIs in 2392 Plate Appearances.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

NHL news: Isles hire Lamoriello, Wild hires Fenton

             With the Stanley Cup playoffs coming to an end, many teams that either missed the playoffs or were eliminated from the playoffs are making coaching changes, or we'll be talking about today, front office changes. Two teams made big decisions earlier, like the New York Islanders, who hired former Toronto Maple Leafs and New Jersey Devils GM Lou Lamoriello as president of hockey operations. The big GM, or general manager spot for the Minnesota Wild now belongs to former Nashville Predators AGM Paul Fenton.

             For the Isles, Lamoriello is a highly experienced executive who has built two teams already. His tenure with the Devils, a 28 year one that lasted from 1987 to 2015, is the third longest tenure for a GM in NHL history, behind Conn Smythe and Art Ross, who both have big time trophies named after them. He built the Devils, a team that never had a winning season before his hiring, to three Stanley cup victories. After resigning in 2015, Lamoriello went to the Maple Leafs, and created the Auston Matthews,, Mitch Marner and William Nylander trio that they currently have. With John Tavares about to be a free agent, the time is perfect to hire a great executive like Lamoriello, who's son, Chris is already AGM of the team.

               For the Wild, Fenton, who had a decent NHL career, including one 32 goal season (he played for the Hartford Whalers, Los Angeles Kings, New York Rangers, Winnipeg Jets, Toronto Maple Leafs, Calgary Flames and San Jose Sharks), was recently the assistant general manager of the Nashville Predators, last year's Western Conference champions. He also was the GM of the Milwaukee Admirals, the Predators' AHL team. There isn't much beyond that for Fenton, but he was a finalist for other teams' GM job, like the Carolina Hurricanes, but stayed with the Predators until their elimination in the playoffs.

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

MLB trade review: Mets, Reds swap former all-stars

            The Cincinnati Reds have acquired RHP Matt Harvey from the New York Mets in exchange for C Devin Mesoraco.

             For the Reds, they get Harvey, a player who has struggled to be productive the last three years, and make another all-star appearance since starting the game for the hometown Mets in the 2013 game. Partying and breaking team rules have been recent issues for Harvey, who was DFA'd after declining an AAA option. Going to a weak Cincinnati team pushes Harvey out of the New York spotlight, which could help him regain success.

            Harvey, 29, has a 7.00 ERA with a 1.55 WHIP and 20 strikeouts in 27 innings this season for the Mets. In his MLB career, all for New York, Harvey has a 3.66 ERA, with a 1.19 WHIP and 612 strikeouts in 639.1 innings.
            For the Mets, they were clearly done with Harvey after his last partying incident, in Los Angeles. They said they were confident they would be able to trade him, and they did. With catcher Travis d'Arnaud out for the year, catching help is needed. Mesoraco, a 2014 all-star, has never played a full season. The closest he has come to one was in '14, where he hit 25 homers in 440 Plate Appearances. But, health has always been an issue for him. He lost the catching job to defensive sensation Tucker Barnhart, so the trade feels right.
             Mesoraco, 30, has hit .220 with one homer and three RBIs in 45 Plate Appearances this season. In his MLB career, all in Cincy, Mesoraco has a batting average of .234 with 48 homers and 162 RBIs in 1345 Plate Appearances.

              I think this is an even trade. Both players clearly need a change, and get one here. I think that Harvey has more upside, but Mesoraco has a better chance to help his team.

Friday, May 4, 2018

NHL trade review: Hurricanes, Coyotes swap Martinook, Kruger

        The Carolina Hurricanes have acquired F Jordan Martinook and a 4th round draft pick from the Arizona Coyotes in exchange for Marcus Kruger (With 10% of his $3 million contract retained) and a third round pick in an unusual trade during the playoffs.

         For the Hurricanes, the get rid of Kruger's big contract (for a 4th liner). I think he's the better player, but Martinook isn't a big drop-off either. The lose a round in the draft, but free up cap.

         Martinook, 25, scored six goals and nine assists for 15 points in 81 games for the Coyotes last year. In his NHL career, all in Arizona, Martinook has scored 26 goals and 39 assists for 65 points in 247 games.

        For the Coyotes, they get Kruger, a solid 4th line center who can fit into their team well and a better draft pick for a bottom six winger. Obviously Kruger is overpaid, but I think they can make it work.

        Kruger, 27, scored one goals and five assists for six points in 48 in his first year in Carolina, this year. In his career between the Canes and Chicago Blackhawks, Kruger has scored 34 goals and 77 assists for 111 points in 446 games.

        I think the Coyotes win this trade. They get a better player and better pick, but take up a little bit of cap, but not too much. That's why they win this trade.