Dave Cameron FanGraphs Chat – 11/29/17

12:04
Dave Cameron: Happy Wednesday, everyone.

12:05
Dave Cameron: I’m gettting a little bit of a late start today, but we’ll fire this thing up in a couple of minutes.

12:11
Andrew : Will Stanton be traded by the Winter Meetings and too what Team?

12:11
Dave Cameron: Since we’re dealing with a guy who has never run a team before, it’s hard to know what Jeter is going to do.

12:11
Dave Cameron: My guess is the teams that are interested will eventually tell the Marlins that they’re moving on if they don’t get an answer.

12:12
Dave Cameron: And I wouldn’t be shocked if that happened next week.

12:12
Dave Cameron: So that everyone could focus on other things in Orlando.

12:12
Brian: Dave, I am excited that Ohtani is almost certainly coming to the MLB.  However, I also kind of what to punch him in the face for not waiting two more years.  Reasonable or do I have serious issues?

12:12
Dave Cameron: Why would you want to punch someone for prioritizing personal happiness over total wealth?

12:12
Dave Cameron: It’s not Ohtani’s fault that MLB and the PA decided to screw him over.

12:13
Nelson: If Otani only gets  less than 300 ABs a year, wont his hitting skills deteriorate right from the start?

12:14
Dave Cameron: Maybe. It’s one of those unknowns that can’t really be answered empirically. We just don’t know how offensive development is hindered without everyday at-bats.

12:14
MattyB: How likely is it that Ohtani joins the Mariners, and how many ABs do you think he’d get there next year?

12:14
Dave Cameron: I would put them in the top five among potential destinations. But even with that, it’s probably 10% or something.

12:15
Dave Cameron: And if he was only DHing a few days a week and didn’t have Ps to pinch hit for, we’re talking maybe 60 starts, so ~250 AB?

12:15
Steve: What type of impact does the luxury tax have on next season’s free agent bonanza?

12:16
Dave Cameron: Teams won’t care next winter. They care this winter because, if they’re close to the line now, they can keep their tax rates lower starting next year, and hold off the 50% tax for a few years.

12:17
Greg: Dave what do you think a Red Sox trade package for Abreu would look like?

12:17
Dave Cameron: Dombrowski is the GM, so whatever a reasonable offer is, +20%

12:18
Dave Cameron: It’s two years of a good-not-great 1B, making probably ~$25M over those two years. Certainly under market value, but not some kind of insane bargain.

12:19
Post Malone: How were the orange rolls?

12:19
Dave Cameron: Amazing, as always.

12:20
Brett W: How would SF’s farm system look in 12 months if it committed to a rebuild today?

12:20
Dave Cameron: They’d get a mint for Bumgarner and Posey, so pretty great.

12:20
J: What’s the better move, signing J.D. to the deal he’ll likely get or going after Stanton?

12:20
Dave Cameron: Depends entirely on how much money the Marlins are ultimately willing to pay down. But I’d probably just sign Martinez.

12:21
BJOGC: How many seasons do YOU think Ohtani will be a hitter? The consensus seems to be that eventually he will be exclusively pitching

12:22
Dave Cameron: Depends on where he lands. Even if he’s only as good a hitter as Bumgarner, still plenty of value in having him PH for the P a bunch.

12:22
Dave Cameron: If he ends up in the AL, I think he might be a P only soon-ish. I don’t know that he’s going to be good enough to justify DH time and whatever cost there is to his pitching.

12:23
Shawn Baseball: How good do the prospects in the deal have to be for the Blue Jays to trade Morales to the White Sox for Jose Abreu?

12:23
Dave Cameron: Better than they would be if they were just trading for Abreu. Morales has negative value.

12:23
Walt Whitman: Shouldn’t the Nationals be in on Stanton (to the extent anyone should be)? One last all-in push with Harper, plus a core moving forward of Stanton, Rendon, Turner, Scherzer, Strasburg?

12:24
Dave Cameron: With Eaton, Taylor, Harper, and Goodwin around, plus Robles nearly ready, they don’t need OF help.

12:24
Mammon: What do you predict for Machado and Harper contacts? Does 12/$350MM and 12/$450MM sound accurate?

12:24
Dave Cameron: Low on both.

12:24
resumeman: Do the Steamer/zips projections include a park adjustment when someone changes teams? So like, if Brandon Belt got traded to the Yankees or something, would his projected HRs jump?

12:24
Dave Cameron: Yes.

12:25
Jeffery Maier’s glove: Bigger need for the 2018 Chicago Cubs- offense or pitching?

12:25
Dave Cameron: Pitching.

12:25
Outta my way, Gyorkass: Lewis Brinson + a lottery ticket or two for Marcus Stroman – is this anywhere near a viable framework for a deal?

12:26
Dave Cameron: Nope. Stroman is worth more than that.

12:26
Magic 8 Ball: Verdugo and Stewart to Marlins for Stanton and what else? $70 million?

12:27
Dave Cameron: I’m not giving up Verdugo unless Miami eats a giant chunk of the deal.

12:27
Dave Cameron: Probably over $100M.

12:27
Sterling Malory Chris Archer: Jeets handling of the Stanton thing isn’t making him look good so far, right?

12:27
Dave Cameron: I can’t think of a single thing Jeter’s group has done since taking over that makes them look good.

12:28
Dave Cameron: It’s early, of course, but this has been basically the worst possible start.

12:29
John Stamos: What are your thoughts on the slow market? Is this because of Stanton and Ohtani holding up teams pursuing elsewhere, or is this a front office shift in delaying the action to bring down open market prices?

12:29
Dave Cameron: I think Stanton is definitely keeping a few teams in a holding pattern, but mostly I think this is a free agent class with a ton of risk and no one that a team can’t live without.

12:30
Jay: It feels like Ohtani and Stanton are holding up the market but Jeff Passan’s piece with comments from exec’s say teams are smarter and holding out to get better deals. While they’re right because free agency just isn’t all it’s cracked up to be from a team standpoint, isn’t this a means of collusion? I’m waiting for Scott Boras to use those comments as an argument for collusion.

12:31
Dave Cameron: It’s not collusion if everyone figures out that agents/players get panicked more easily about proximity to spring training and take reduced deals because of it.

12:31
Dave Cameron: But hopefully most agents are good enough at their jobs to explain to their clients what is happening.

12:31
Dave Cameron: This is where agents need to earn their money, and convince their clients to wait out the teams. The money is there. It will get spent.

12:32
striker: What is your estimate for Abreu’s surplus value?

12:32
Dave Cameron: $20 million, maybe?

12:32
ryan: i want to punch mlb in the face for forcing ohtani to choose between his spiritual well-being and his real financial value

12:33
Dave Cameron: The player’s association also agreed to that.

12:33
Dave Cameron: So don’t let them off the hook.

12:33
El Jefe: I’ve read mixed reports, but what is sentiment regarding Otani’s ability to play the outfield? Apparently he’s a terrific athlete and fast.

12:34
Dave Cameron: He said he’s not sure he can play OF in the majors, and I don’t think anyone wants to take that risk.

12:35
Alex: Why so little love for Otani to Nats – winning team, Bryce, major city, etc

12:35
Dave Cameron: Bryce for a year.

12:36
Dave Cameron: And it’s a major city for reasons that probably don’t appeal to someone who just wants to focus on baseball.

12:36
BossMan: Otani aside, is general sentiment around the league regarding the Yankees basically that they’ll likely sit out on major free agents this year to get under the tax and splurge next offseason?

12:37
Dave Cameron: I think they can sign a few FAs and still stay under the tax line.

12:37
Dave Cameron: But yeah, they’re going to save their money for Harper/Machado/Kershaw next year.

12:37
Kristaps Porzingis: Is Bryce Harper more likely to be a Yankee or Cub in 2019?

12:37
Dave Cameron: Yankee.

12:38
Braves: If you were Alex Anthopolous, how would you approach next season?  The young position player core is starting to come together, but it’s hard to tell what any of the young SPs will give you next year.

12:39
Dave Cameron: The Braves need to do what the Brewers have done so well; find interesting role player types who might have some upside. Grab a bunch of +1 WAR big leaguers and then try to turn them into more than that.

12:39
Dave Cameron: Travis Shaw/Chase Anderson types.

12:40
The Man With No Name: Do think Hoskins is legit?  For example, do you think he’s a .375 wOBA guy next year?

12:40
Dave Cameron: Yeah

12:40
Dave Cameron: I’m a fan.

12:40
Roadhog: Lorenzo Cain is a really good fit for the A’s. Think the Encarnacion money is still around?

12:40
Dave Cameron: Would guess they won’t want to give up a pick.

12:41
Mo-Mers: Regarding your bit on the Jays, trading Donaldson for two infielders (Gyorko and Carpenter) would require them to complete at least one more deal to send someone out, no? Tulo’s at his lowest value (so it’s a terrible time to trade him), Travis is very good, but has struggled to stay on the field (so it’s a terrible time to trade him), Gurriel is perhaps a half season from joining the team as a backup middle infielder, and Bichette is perhaps a year away at 2B. I just don’t see the fit for adding two major league regulars in the infield (much less for a top five MLB player), and as a Jays fan, I hope the front office agrees.

12:41
Dave Cameron: Travis hasn’t shown he can be relied upon for a job.

12:43
Dave Cameron: Under the scenario I proposed, you go into the year with Gyorko at 3B, Tulo at SS, Carpenter at 2B, Smoak at 1B. If/when Tulo gets hurt, 3B is open for Vlad Jr if he’s ready, or they could shift Carpenter back to third if they want to play Gurriel or Travis at 2B. Or if both of those guys prove ready and Smoak sucks, Carpenter goes to 1B.

12:43
Dave Cameron: Gives you flexibility for the inevitable need to replace injured guys. And the Jays lack of depth is a huge problem.

12:44
Prich: What do you think the Marlins will ultimately do: Pay down the contract and receive a haul; pay a little and get a solid package; find the team willing to take the most $$$ off their hands and more or less ignore the prospects coming back?

12:45
Dave Cameron: Reading the tea leaves, I think they want to dump as much of the contract as possible, and I think they’ll take less in return to do so.

12:45
Dan: What is your take on how the Braves OF shakes out?

12:46
Dave Cameron: I wouldn’t be shocked if they just cut Kemp in spring training.

12:46
Dave Cameron: AA isn’t the guy who traded for him, so easier for him to just say “not my guy”

12:46
Jordan : White Sox fans seem to think they could get JBJ+ top prospects, or Ben+ top prospects for Abreu, I contend that between age, $$$ and the glut of similar free agents means Abreu isn’t worth JBJ or Ben or top prospects, what’s your thoughts on his value?

12:46
Dave Cameron: Bradley is worth so much more than Abreu, it’s not even close.

12:47
Ryan: Abreu opted into arb so he is going to make 17.9M this year according to MLBTR. Even worse for Boston.

12:47
Dave Cameron: I’ll take the under on him getting $18M, but yeah, good point.

12:47
Dave Cameron: He got $11M as an arb-1 last year, so after a good year, he’s probably over $16M this year, and maybe $20M next year.

12:48
Dave Cameron: So now he’s more like 2/$35M, maybe 2/$40M?

12:48
Dave Cameron: You’d take him at those prices, but if you give up something really valuable to get it, it’s a mistake.

12:49
Garrett: Postulating that Bill James’ premise that the Yankees’ underperforming their pythag wins is an indictment of Judge’s performance in 2017.  Wouldn’t that *also* imply that you’d need to calculate how much of that under-performance *each* *player* is responsible for?  Say, if the rough patch the bullpen went through in the middle of the season cost them a bunch of close games.  Normalizing for context means you have to normalize *everybody* on that team, no?

12:49
Dave Cameron: Yup.

12:49
striker: RedSox get Abreu
Giants get JBJ
WhiteSox get Groome and Arroyo

12:49
Dave Cameron: Dombrowski gets insta-fired.

12:50
Dave Cameron: Also, the world in which the Giants can turn Christian Arroyo into Jackie Bradley Jr must be a fun one.

12:50
Brian: Is JBJ and Michael Chavis or Sam Travis enough, too little or too much for Jose Abreu?

12:50
Dave Cameron: I can’t believe how many JBJ+ for Abreu suggestions are in the queue.

12:51
Dave Cameron: Bradley is better than Abreu, cheaper than Abreu, and under team control for longer than Abreu. Also, there’s a billion first baseman on the market this winter, and only one good CF.

12:52
Birddog: Would a swap of Mark Trumbo for Jordan Zimmerman make sense?

12:53
Dave Cameron: I don’t know what the Tigers would do with Trumbo, or why the Orioles would want Zimmerman.

12:53
The Man With No Name: If Ohtani is only as good a hitter as Bumgarner is, you say there’s “still value in having him pinch hit a bunch.”  But Bumgarner doesn’t PH a bunch.  Why not?  He doesn’t want to?  Giants won’t allow it?

12:53
Dave Cameron: Giants didn’t have to promise to let him do it in order to sign him.

12:53
Dave Cameron: If you can entice Ohtani to join your team by offering him PH at-bats, it’s worth doing.

12:55
Nate: Who is the most likely guy traded that no one is talking about?

12:55
Dave Cameron: Gerrit Cole?

12:55
Dave Cameron: Feels like PIT will trade Cutch, and then people will realize “oh, yeah, we can go get Cole now”

12:56
Kevin: If Abreu surplus is 20m, then would you be OK with Boston trading one of Groome/Chavis for him?

12:57
Dave Cameron: Sure. I’m not as high on those guys as many others.

12:58
Mike: Matt Adams seems like the kind of guy the Yankees target to plug at DH until half way through the year when they DFA him for being bad, agreed?

12:58
Dave Cameron: He looks like a Royal to me.

12:59
Chris: Regarding the Donaldson to Stl proposal, is it possible for the Cardinals to talk to Donaldson about a contract extension while he is under contract with the Jays, if they give Stl a window? I know he’s not signing an extension, just wondering about the rules.

12:59
Dave Cameron: You get 72 hours after a trade has been agreed to in order to talk to the new guy about an extension before the trade has to be finalized.

1:00
Andrew: I realize needs are different and whatnot, but generally speaking, what type of contract would you be willing to give to Hosmer if you were a GM?  If he could be signed for ~4 years/$80 mil, would he then be ‘worth’ it?

1:00
Dave Cameron: Sure, at 4/$80M, he’s fine.

1:00
Dave Cameron: He’s not a terrible player.

1:00
Dave Cameron: He’s just overrated.

1:00
Matt: Regarding what you think the Marlins *will* do with Stanton: what do you think they *should* do?

1:01
Dave Cameron: Offer to eat a bunch of the end of the contract in exchange for better prospects, then hope he opts out and you don’t have to eat any of that anyway.

1:01
JD: Why would the Blue Jays trade Josh Donaldson in a non-rebuild move? i.e. for MLB talent as opposed to prospects.

1:01
Dave Cameron: Because they want to win in 2018.

1:02
YKnotDisco?!: Is there any particular player that you were unquestionably wrong about?

1:02
Dave Cameron: I wasn’t very high on Chase Utley as a prospect.

1:02
Dave Cameron: But I loved Andy Marte.

1:03
Kevin: Which is better – Stanton with his current contract or Harper for 10/400, with an opt out after 2021?

1:03
Dave Cameron: Harper.

1:04
Rockie Dangerfield: Which on-paper contender would make the best seller if they implode in the first half next season?

1:04
Dave Cameron: Nationals.

1:05
Dave Cameron: If they fall apart in the first half, Harper is on the block, maybe Scherzer too.

1:05
Dave Cameron: Plus Doolittle/Madson.

1:06
Rasta: Coppy’s lifetime ban seemed a little over the top, no?

1:07
Dave Cameron: It was a symbolic gesture, like me being banned from ever performing on Broadway or appearing as a Victoria’s Secret model.

1:07
NatsFan: and D. Murphy

1:07
Dave Cameron: Oh, right, he’s in his walk year too.

1:07
NatsFan: And Gio

1:07
Dave Cameron: Yeah, the Nationals would own the trade deadline if their first half was a disaster.

1:08
Dave Cameron: Assuming some of those guys weren’t injured, being the cause of the terrible start.

1:08
Dave Cameron: Alright, that’s going to do it for this week.

1:08
Dave Cameron: Thanks for hanging out, everyone.

1:08
Dave Cameron: Hopefully next week, we’ll have some actual transactions to talk about.





Dave is the Managing Editor of FanGraphs.

2 Comments
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Rols1026
4 years ago

Jose Abreu is projected to make over $17 mil this year per MLBTR. Not sure why you’re assuming 2/25 for Abreu, its more like 2/40. Arbitration vastly overvalues this type of player. $20 mil surplus value on Abreu? Thats insane. Abreu doesn’t have much trade value at all.

Rols1026
4 years ago
Reply to  Rols1026

Looks like it was corrected later in the chat. My apologies.