Lets make a deal

HBT’s Trade Deadline Tracker

15 Comments

The 2012 non-waiver trade deadline has come and gone. Here’s your summary of who went where and for whom:

7/31/12: The Indians Acquire 1B Lars Anderson from the Red Sox for RHP Steven Wright. Quick Take: Anderson is a once-promising slugger who has seemingly run out of gas on his third time through Triple-A. Wright is a knuckleball experiment which could be fun at least.

7/31/12: The Yankees Acquire 3B/1B Casey McGehee from the Pirates for RHP Chad Qualls. Quick Take: Yawn. The Yankees get rid of a reliever they don’t need and the Pirates get rid of a corner guy they don’t need. If McGehee can turn the clock back to 2009-10 again, hey, the Yankees third base hole is filled until A-Rod comes back. But don’t count on it.

7/31/12: The Rangers acquire RHP Ryan Dempster from the Cubs for 3B Christian Villanueva and RHP Kyle Hendricks. Quick Take: The Rangers desperately needed a starter, and they swooped in and took Dempster from the clutches of the Dodgers.

7/31/12: The Reds acquire RHP Jonathan Broxton from the Royals. Quick Take: The Reds already have the best bullpen in the NL and add a guy with 23 saves who throws hard to be a role-playing setup man. The rich get richer.

7/31/12: The Marlins trade 1B Gaby Sanchez to the Pirates for OF Gorkys Hernandez. Quick Take: Sanchez was an All-Star last year but has cratered and has been in the minors for a month. A change of scenery could unlock his old self.

7/31/12: The Diamondbacks trade LHP Craig Breslow to the Red Sox for OF Scott Podsednik and RHP Matt Albers. Quick Take: The Sox add a nice lefty specialist and unload a worse pitcher and a guy with no future on the team. Not bad.

7/31/12: The Marlins trade RHP Edward Mujica to the Cardinals for 3B Zack Cox. Quick Take: Cox has the chance to be something special — he’s young and powerful — but the Cards need bullpen help now, and Mujica should provide it.

7/31/12: The Phillies trade OF Hunter Pence to the Giants for OF Nate Schierholtz, C Tommy Joseph and RHP Seth Rosin. Quick Take: Pence upgrades the Giants offense. His departure lowers the Phillies payroll. And Joseph is a potential catcher of the future.

7/31/12: The Phillies trade OF Shane Victorino to the Dodgers for RHP Josh Lindblom and RHP Ethan Martin. Quick Take: He’ll play left for a Dodgers team that has worked hard to upgrade at the deadline. For the Phillies: the end of something of an era, I guess. Victorino is now nearly 3,000 miles closer to Hawaii.

7/30/12: The Pirates acquired OF Travis Snider from the Toronto Blue Jays for RHP Brad Lincoln: Quick Take: A guy who was once the Jays’ top hitting prospect but has never been able to do it in the bigs could use the change of scenery.

7/30/12: The Blue Jays Acquired RHP Steve Delabar from the Seattle Mariners for OF Eric Thames. Quick Take: Eric Thames: not likely to power the M’s to the playoffs this year. Sorry, folks!

7/30/12: The Dodgers acquired RHP Brandon League from the Seattle Mariners for OF Leon Landry and RHP Logan Bawcom. Quick Take: Bullpen help for the Dodgers when their division rival Giants could use the same? Delicious.

7/30/12: The Braves Acquired LHP Paul Maholm, OF Reed Johnson and cash considerations from the Chicago Cubs for RHP Arodys Vizcaino and RHP Jaye Chapman. Quick Take: The Braves bolster their rotation and add a useful bat in Johnson. The Cubs get something of a lottery ticket in Vizcaino with all of its attendant risks and potential rewards.

7/30/12: The Cubs trade C Geovany Soto to the Rangers for RHP Jacob Brigham. Quick Take: Lots of catching congestion in Texas. Figure it means the end of the  Yorvit Torrealba era. Gentlemen, please doff your caps in respect.

7/29/12: The Brewers traded C George Kottaras to Oakland for RHP Fautino De Los Santos. Quick Take: Kottaras woulda been a great Moneyball-era pickup for the A’s. Old habits die hard.

7/29/12: The Diamondbacks traded OF Marc Krauss and OF Bobby Borchering to Houston for 3B Chris Johnson. Quick Take: A nice bat for the Dbacks.

7/28/12: The White Sox acquired LHP Francisco Liriano from the Minnesota Twins for INF Eduardo Escobar and LHP Pedro Hernandez. Quick Take: Liriano is an enigma at this point, capable of a shutdown outing of, more commonly, a facepalm outing. But the Sox need rotation depth to get out of the “Peavy and Sale and pray for hail” pattern they were developing in the first half.

7/25/12: The Marlins traded 3B Hanley Ramirez and LHP Randy Choate to the Dodgers for RHP Nathan Eovaldi and RHP Scott McGough. Quick Take: If the Dodgers got pre-2011 Hanley Ramirez it’s a game-changer in the west. If not, well, at least it should be fun to see how Don Mattingly handles discipline.

7/27/12: The Angels acquire RHP Zack Greinke from the Brewers for SS Jean Segura, RHP Ariel Pena and RHP Johnny Hellweg. Quick Take: The Angels get an ace, but he may only be a rental and they paid a high price in return: Segura, Pena and Hellweg were their second, fourth and ninth best prospects coming in to the season.

7/24/12: The Pirates acquired LHP Wandy Rodriguez and cash from the Astros for LHP Rudy Owens, LHP Colton Cain and OF Robbie Grossman. Quick Take: The Pirates are goin’ for it and a solid starter that Rodriguez is the kind of pickup the fans needed to see.

7/24/12: The Indians traded RHP Jose De La Torre to Boston for INF/OF Brent Lillibridge. Quick Take: In the future, Brent Lillibridge will be a utility player for every team for fifteen minutes.

7/23/12: The Mariners traded OF Ichiro Suzuki and cash considerations to the Yankees for RHP D.J. Mitchell and RHP Danny Farquhar. Quick Take: Take the famous name off this deal and the Yankees got something they needed — a defensive-oriented outfielder with some speed and the ability to put the ball in play — in exchange for organization depth and not much more. The key: getting Raul Ibanez out of left field every day. Mission accomplished.

7/23/12: The Tigers acquired RHP Anibal Sanchez, 2B Omar Infante and a competitive balance lottery draft choice between the first and second round of the 2013 amateur draft from the Miami Marlins for RHP Jacob Turner, LHP Brian Flynn, C Rob Brantly and a competitive ballance lottery draft choice between the second and third round of the 2013 amateur draft. Quick Take: Dave Dombrowski addresses the Tigers two biggest need — a starter and a second baseman — in one fell swoop. Jacob Turner could be missed, but not in the 2012 pennant race, and that’s where the Tigers are now.

7/21/12: The White Sox acquired RHP Brett Myers and cash considerations from Houston for RHP Matt Heidenreich and LHP Blair Walters and a player to be named. Quick Take: I guess weirder things have happened that a guy like Brett Myers being the closer for a World Series winning team, but I just can’t think of it right now.

7/20/12: The Astros acquired RHP Francisco Cordero, OF Ben Francisco, RHP Joe Musgrove, RHP Asher Wojciechowski, LHP David Rollins, C Carlos Perez and a player to be named for RHP Brandon Lyon, LHP J.A. Happ and RHP David Carpenter from Toronto. Quick Take: Sound and fury, signifying nothing. Easily the most talent-light giant trade in baseball history.

7/20/12: The Mets traded INF Omar Quintanilla to the Orioles for cash. Quick Take: Take the money, leave the canolis.

7/20/12: The Rockies traded RHP Jeremy Guthrie to the Royals for LHP Jonathan Sanchez. Quick Take: One man’s trash is another man’s treasure. Another man isn’t going to go too crazy talking up his treasure, though. At least not in this case.

7/14/12: The Reds traded INF Paul Janish to Atlanta for RHP Todd Redmond. Quick Take: The Braves trading for a white veteran middle infielder is about the most predictable thing ever.

7/4/12: The Astros acquired INF Matt Dominguez and LHP Rob Rasmussen from Miami for 1B Carlos Lee. Quick Take: Remember when the Marlins thought they were buyers? Yeah, that seemed like eons ago.

7/1/12: The Yankees acquired RHP Chad Qualls from Philadelphia for a player to be named. Quick Take: I still don’t quite get this one. Qualls is just keeping Joba Chamberlain’s seat warm.

6/30/12: The Phillies traded 1B Jim Thome to Baltimore for RHP Kyle Simon and C Gabriel Lino. Quick Take: Jim Thome will play until he’s 60 and will mash taters for every team in baseball at least once.

Russell Martin is not a fan of the automatic intentional walk

CLEVELAND, OH - OCTOBER 15:  Russell Martin #55 of the Toronto Blue Jays reacts after being struck out in the fourth inning against the Cleveland Indians during game two of the American League Championship Series at Progressive Field on October 15, 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Elsa/Getty Images
6 Comments

On Tuesday, it was announced that Major League Baseball instituted a new rule allowing for a dugout signal in order to issue an intentional walk rather than having the pitcher throw four pitches wide of the strike zone. It’s commissioner Rob Manfred’s attempt to help improve the game’s pace of play.

As Sportsnet’s Shi Davidi reports, Blue Jays catcher Russell Martin is certainly not a fan of the change.

My thing is, if they really want to speed up the game, then when a guy hits a home run, to speed up the game should a guy, just like in softball, when he hits it, should he just walk to the dugout? It’d be quicker. I’m just wondering, at what point do we just keep the game, the game? Or, how about this calculation: take all the intentional walks that were made in the last couple years and calculate – or maybe just ask to see if they have that information, to see if they really did their homework. Is it really that important to speed up the game (with this rule)? Because how many games did we play last year where we didn’t have one intentional walk? That’s something I’d like to know.

Martin also expressed concern that eliminating the four-pitch intentional walk will hurt teams’ ability to buy time for their relievers to warm up.

It’s called getting your bullpen ready so the guy doesn’t blow out his arm on the mound. Speed up the game, speed up the game.’ How about we just give guys – the human being – time to warm up on the mound after maybe something’s happened in the game? I’m not a manager, but I’m just trying to put myself in the position of a manager. OK, we’re up by one run or two runs and our bullpen’s been taxed and we’re trying to save their arms, and then the other team walks, ball gets away, guy gets to second base. When the coach visits the mound to talk to his player, it’s not like the player necessarily needs somebody to talk to him.

It’s because the guy (in the bullpen) needs time to warm up, man. It’s the same thing when you throw over to first base, like, eight times in a row. It’s not like we’re trying to keep the guy close. The guy maybe has two stolen bases in 18 years. It’s because the guy needs time to warm up. At what point does that become a problem with guys warming up in the bullpen? Sometimes it’s just strategy to give guys a little bit of time to warm up.

The Jays’ backstop then said he’d prefer if Manfred were honest about the intent behind this rule change and others which have been proposed. Martin said, “Save it. I’m tired of hearing that same lame excuse all the time. Just be honest. If they’re honest about it, we’ll get over it. But don’t hide behind the fans.”

We should be hearing from a handful of players about the new intentional walk rule in the coming days. I can’t imagine the rule is very popular among the players.

Leonys Martin feared for his life from alleged human traffickers

SEATTLE, WA - SEPTEMBER 30: Leonys Martin #12 of the Seattle Mariners at Safeco Field on September 30, 2016 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Stephen Brashear/Getty Images)
Leave a comment

Leonys Martin, outfielder for the Seattle Mariners, testified yesterday that he feared for his life after he was smuggled from Cuba by a group of men prosecutors say worked for a sports agent and a baseball trainer currently on trial for human trafficking in Miami.

Martin took the stand at the trial of Bartolo Hernandez and Julio Estrada, who face felony charges. He said that, after getting to Mexico from Cuba, men threatened to take him away. There was a kidnapping attempt against one of the men who had taken him from Cuba as well. Martin said that, eventually, he crossed the U.S.-Mexico border into Texas without any valid papers because his life was in danger and his safety was at risk.

Players like Martin who fled Cuba often hole up in Mexico while waiting to be declared free agents by Major League Baseball. There is pitched competition to sign agreements with the players in question, seeking to obtain promises of a cut of future baseball earnings for their services. Those promises can come under the threat of violence. Eventually, Martin promised to pay Hernandez and Estrada, but ceased paying them later, fomenting a lawsuit from them. In the wake of the suit, the allegations of threats and smuggling arose, leading to this trial.

Martin has been late to Mariners camp as a result of having to testify. He’ll likely report in the next day or so. The trial continues.