In trying to chart a course for the San Francisco Giants, Jon Paul Morosi is either thinking outside the box or trolling. I’m not sure which:
So if the Giants wish to maximize their odds of returning to the World Series, they have two choices.
1. Spend big for Prince Fielder, Albert Pujols, Jose Reyes or at the very least Carlos Beltran.
2. Trade one of those prized starters for impact bats, because the day is fast approaching when the Giants won’t be able to afford them all.
And if the Giants blanch at the going rates in free agency, the most practical move might be to trade Mr. Two-Time Cy Young Award Winner himself. Yes. Lincecum.
I get the idea that to get something you gotta give something, but this seems rather extreme. Both in terms of what to obtain — the most expensive free agent bat on the market — and in terms of what to give up to do that — one of baseball’s truly unique and valuable pitching talents. There’s no middle course here? Say, trading Matt Cain instead and upgrading the offense on an incremental basis?
Maybe the Giants could swing a winning trade involving Lincecum and still be successful in the short run, but I can’t shake the notion that most of the time, if you’re giving up the better player in a trade, you’re losing that trade.
The Mariners acquired Yankees’ right-hander Nick Rumbelow in exchange for minor league righty Juan Then and left-hander JP Sears, per an official announcement on Saturday. Rumbelow made 17 appearances for the Yankees in 2015 before undergoing Tommy John surgery and could provide some bullpen depth for the Mariners in 2018.
The 26-year-old right-hander spent the majority of his 2017 season in Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, where he delivered an 0.62 ERA, 2.5 BB/9 and 9.3 SO/9 over 29 innings. The Yankees didn’t rush Rumbelow into a full workload after he missed the 2016 season recovering from Tommy John, but he didn’t appear to have any significant setbacks with his health or performance and should be ready to compete for a role next spring.
Sears, 21, was ranked 21st in the Mariners’ organization by MLB Pipeline. He was drafted in the 11th round of the 2017 draft and features a deceptive, low-velocity fastball that he can throw for strikes to either side of the plate. In his first year of pro ball, he split 17 games between Short-Season A Everett and Single-A Clinton, turning in an 0.65 ERA, 3.9 BB/9 and 16.6 SO/9 across two levels.
Then, 17, also completed his first year of pro ball after signing with the Mariners as a free agent. He went 2-2 in 13 games of rookie ball, pitching to a 2.64 ERA, 2.2 BB/9 and 8.2 SO/9 in 61 1/3 innings. Neither Sears nor Then will take the mound for the Yankees anytime soon, and offloading Rumbelow to the Mariners should clear up some room on New York’s 40-man roster as they prepare for the upcoming Rule 5 Draft.