January 11, 2008

Friday Tidbits

Hey everyone. Still nothing new on the Johan Santana trade talks, and no I am not sitting and waiting for it to happen. It's gone on too long for me to do that. I'm not sure if there will be anything to post on over the weekend, but you can bet that if anything interesting 'pops' up that I'll give you my feedback on it.

So with that, here are a few links and things that may interest you:

According to Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, the Brewers may consider trading Bill Hall if the Brewers sign a free agent center fielder. He also mentions that they may just move him to a different position, which may be most logical as Ryan Braun showed horrible defense as a rookie at third base in '07, but of course that's not what I'm going to be getting at. What would it take to go get him? Even if the Twins did end up landing a plethora of prospects for Santana, it doesn't look like we're getting a potential long-term third baseman in return. Hall could be that guy. The Twins would probably have to give up Jason Kubel and maybe a pitching prospect in return, however despite Kubel's strong end last season, I have to say that my optimism for his success has started to wear thin and if he doesn't show big improvements in '08, I am definitely going to be on his case all season.

So if the asking price was Kubel and a low-level pitching prospect, how would you feel of acquiring Hall to play third base? Lets say the Twins make a trade with the Mets (lets say we get back Fernando Martinez, Carlos Gomez, Deolis Geurra, Kevin Mulvey & Phil Humber) we'd have a surplus of pitching prospects (as we already do regardless) and center field would be filled and Kubel would be pushed to splitting time at DH with Craig Monroe. So should the Twins make a move for him? What would it take? And just for speculation purposes:

CF - Carlos Gomez
2B - Brendan Harris
C - Joe Mauer
LF - Delmon Young
1B - Justin Morneau
RF - Michael Cuddyer
3B - Bill Hall
DH - Mike Lamb/Craig Monroe
SS - Adam Everett

And in as early as 2009 (probably more likely '10), Martinez could move in the lineup and fill DH or push another player to DH (Justin Morneau with Michael Cuddyer playing first?) What do you think?

After finishing in dead last in Seth Speaks "NFL Expert Picks Panel" for the season by a considerable margin, I managed to pick all four of last weeks playoff winners and I hope that I'm right again this week. Check out who was picked.

Speaking of Seth Speaks, go over there and check out his interview with John Mayo of milb.com in regards to his upcoming book "Facing Clemens: Hitters on Confronting Baseball's Most Intimidating Pitcher". Definitely check it out.

Over at Twinkie Town, Seth Stohs conducted a poll of the Twins Community #1 Prospect. Anthony Swarzak won the vote with 45% of the vote with Tyler Robertson in a distant second with 21% of the vote. (If anyone is wondering, which I doubt you are, I voted for Swarzak). The Twins #2 Community Prospect voting is underway, and I'm voting for Robertson.

And remember to stay tuned for my top 50 prospect list which I've already begun working on and I'm hoping to get it out sometime in the next few weeks. And again, sorry I can't be more precise on the timing, however I will tell you one of the reasons I'm waiting is because I am waiting to see if the Twins net any prospects worth putting on the list for Santana, which I think is going to be very likely if the Twins do end up trading him. So stay tuned.

Nick Nelson gives us a look at some of the Mets prospects with his "Meet the Mets" post. It's in regards to some of the prospects being linked to a possible deal with the Twins which was mentioned here yesterday.

Over at "The Hardball Times", they've ranked the top outfield arms in the league for 2007 and Minnesota Twins right fielder Michael Cuddyer lead right fielders with an estimated 12 runs he saved with his arm either by throwing out runners or by holding runner from advancing. And to add, Delmon Young ranked fourth among right fielders and newly acquired Craig Monroe was second among left fielders.

Ubelmann gives us a look into Fernando Martinez and seems less optimistic than most about this 19-year-old prospects future. Here's a bit of what he said:
People will probably say that the sky is the limit for Fernando, but I guess I put the sky farther up than that. Martinez looks like someone who, if things go right, can be a league average to slightly above league average hitter while playing above average defense at an up-the-middle position. That's a very good player, an All-Star some years, but probably not an MVP. He's never had great on-base skills, and we don't know that he can play premium (rather than above average) defense, so that keeps him from whatever the topmost level is in my hypothetical prospect scale. In the worst-case scenario, Martinez turns out to be bad with the glove in center, has trouble hitting for contact/power in the majors (thanks to his hacktastic ways), and is a total bust.
It is a risky business when dealing with a player as young as Martinez, which is why I'm hoping the Twins pry both Martinez & Gomez away from the Mets. It's still risky as both are still raw players (Gomez being more so), but both have a lot of tools to make them phenomenal players some day. If the Twins can get Martinez, then I hope Ubelmann is wrong, but if we don't then I hope he's right. (I'm only joking!)

Here's a nice piece on Tommy Watkins, but I will tell you that it's from nearly a year and a half ago. But it's still worth checking out.

Josh Taylor gives us a good response to a story in the Chicago Sun-Times in which one Hall of Fame voter wouldn't because of the issues of steroids in baseball. I recommend that you check out what he has to say in response. And speaking of voting for the Hall of Fame, Josh also predicted who'd be inducted into the HOF and what the percentage would be. He was very accurate with his picks. And by the way, CONGRATS TO GOOSE GOSSAGE!

What does this mean in regards to he Yankees pursuit of Santana? Probably nothing, but you should know by now that I love to speculate. It just makes one wonder how trustworthy the Yankees "word" is as just a week ago the Yankees said they wouldn't pursue a center fielder even if they ended up trading Melky Cabrera. Hmmm... How many times would that be that the Yankees have gone back on their word?
  1. They said they wouldn't pursue Alex Rodriguez if he opted out of his contract. He later re-signed with the Yankees for a new record contract.
  2. They said they wouldn't sign Jorge Posada to a four-year deal, they signed him for 4-years and $52.4 million.
  3. They set up a deadline for the Twins to accept their trade offer of Santana, or their out of the running for him. Well he's later tried to explain what he meant by that, and quite frankly I just don't buy it. They had intentions of seeing if the Twins would crack, and they didn't so they're now back in it
  4. Or are they? Last week, Hank Steinbrenner said in an interview that the Yankees were "leaning towards" a trade for Santana, and a week later, he's now saying that the Yankees are "leaning away from" a trade for Santana.
  5. In that same interview, he said that the Yankees:
"And let's face it, we're the best able to handle the kind of contract (extension) Santana will be after."
Now he's saying the Yankees won't go past a 5-year deal.

They also said they wouldn't re-sign Roger Clemens, would anyone be surprised to see him in a Yankees uniform at Yankees stadium in July? I mean honestly... Is there a bigger buffoon in all of baseball right now?

Speaking of Clemens, his scheduled hearing infront of the House with former teamate and fellow pitcher Andy Pettitte and trainer Brian McNamee was originally scheduled for January 16th will be postponed until February 13th. It's being delayed so the lawmakers had more time with their investigation. Fan-fricken-tastic! I'm sure this is what everyone wants to hear, more Clemens-McNamee talk for another month. Yay! I hope you're sensing my sarcasm.

Ever wondered who you would build your team around if you could choose one player in all of baseball? Well ESPN's Jerry Crasnick answered questions in a chat of choosing between Albert Pujols or Alex Rodriguez. I would personally choose Pujols, however that may stem from my "man crush" on him since he has come in the league.

On a couple of side notes:

I am sad to say that Sir Edmund Hillary has passed away. In case you're not aware of who he is, he was the first person to climb Mount Everest (at least that we know of). He did it nearly 55 years ago. I have a goal in life to hopefully someday climb a mountain, so I thought this was something I'd pass along.

Also, what is this? A $2,500 car? New? Say Whaaaaaaat?

Hope you have a great weekend!