RA Dickey pitch

The Mets are mulling a multi-year deal for R.A. Dickey. Is this important? Does this mean something?

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This is not news in the sense that something has happened. Nothing has happened yet, actually.  The Daily News is reporting that the Mets are considering whether to offer R.A. Dickey multiple years or give the arbitration-eligible pitcher a one-year deal.  I’m sure this mulling has been occurring since soon after Alderson was hired. What I think is significant, however, is how a decision not to offer Dickey multiple years might be perceived.

As the article notes, Sandy Alderson and his team are trying to figure out if Dickey’s excellent 2010 was a fluke that demands caution going forward or a breakthrough that demands a multiple-year offer.  If they decide it’s the former, I have a suspicion that people may freak out a little bit. Dickey was one of the few bright spots in New York last year, and he became a fan favorite.  I wonder if his fans — in the media and at large — would view this through the same kind of anti-sabermetrics prism that people in Los Angeles viewed Paul Depodesta’s moves with the Dodgers.  Accusing the sabermetrically-inclined Alderson administration of being heartless stat-mongers or something.

Or maybe they won’t. I get the sense that there is quiet optimism among Mets fans on the new front office.  But it’s exactly these sorts of situations — a less-than-sure-thing fan favorite pitted against cool calculation — that are ripe for the battle lines to be drawn. We’ve seen it before. I wonder if we’ll see it again.

The Nationals acquire Marc Rzepczynski from the Athletics

ARLINGTON, TX - JULY 25:  Marc Rzepczynski #35 of the Oakland Athletics throws against the Texas Rangers in the fifth inning at Globe Life Park in Arlington on July 25, 2016 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
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The Nationals have acquired left-handed reliever Marc Rzepczynski and cash considerations from the A’s in exchange for minor league infielder Max Schrock.

Schrock is a 21-year-old second baseman who has been pretty darn impressive in A-ball this year, but the Nats can be excused for giving up promise in 2018 or whatever for some bullpen help come playoff time. Rzepczynski walks a few too many guys for my taste but he strikes ’em out at a pretty decent rate for a LOOGY and the Nats could use another southpaw reliever apart from Oliver Perez. This is especially true given how many tough lefty hitters they may face in the playoffs.

On the basic merits, sure, Rzepczynski for Schrock may look pretty dang good for the A’s in a few years. But this October the A’s will be watching on TV from home while the Nats will be trying to win it all, making the trade pretty darn understandable from their point of view.

 

Video: Minor leaguer dives over the wall to rob a home run

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Meanwhile, in Tulsa, Zach Welz of the visiting Arkansas Travelers made a spectacular catch. It was the catch Torii Hunter tried to make on that famous David Ortiz homer in the playoffs a few years back except Welz made it.

Watch as he topples over the wall to come up with the would-be dinger off the bat of Tulsa Drillers first baseman Cody Bellinger: