December 19, 2012
Wednesday, December 19
Apart from an entertaining press conference in Oakland, where general manager Billy Beane and his new shortstop, Hiroyuki Nakajima, took turns calling each other “extremely sexy and cool,” Tuesday was a boring day on the Hot Stove. To liven things up, here’s a look at two chips that could soon fall, and a long-shot trade scenario involving the Dodgers.
Edwin Jackson bidding down to Cubs and Rangers
When teams begin to publicly drop out of the running for free agents that they were openly pursuing, that’s often an indication that the player of interest is nearing a decision. Bowden reported on Tuesday that the Padres moved on from the 29-year-old Jackson when his contract demands reached four years, leaving the Cubs and Rangers to fight over a player that general manager Josh Byrnes deemed unworthy of such a long-term commitment. In addition to expecting a resolution in the coming days, we can also deduce that either Theo Epstein or Jon Daniels has floated a proposal worth at least $48 million over four years, based on this tweet from FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal noting San Diego’s ceiling.
Chicago and Texas became logical destinations for Jackson when Anibal Sanchez and Zack Greinke spurned the Cubs and Rangers, respectively. Most of the five-year, $75 million offer that Epstein reportedly put on the table for Sanchez could be reallocated to Jackson, assuming that the pursuit of Sanchez was rooted in a desire to add an expensive starter, as opposed to a specific affinity for the Tigers right-hander. Meanwhile, Daniels may view Jackson as part of “Plan E”—a consolation prize to Greinke, Josh Hamilton, and James Shields, with desperation brewing in Arlington as the biggest names slip away.
Last week, Sam Miller put together a 12-question blind quiz to gauge your preference for the player-valuation systems published here (WARP), at Baseball Reference (bWAR/rWAR), and at FanGraphs (fWAR). As was the case with many of the players in Sam’s sample, your opinion of Jackson depends on your metric of choice: