A look at which teams who could fill an entire rotation with high-upside prospects
It's a cliché, but it's true. Everyone needs pitching. Even the richest of the rich need pitching. The Yankees added Hiroki Kuroda and Michael Pineda this off-season, while the Red Sox have scrambled to improve their rotation and will try reliever Daniel Bard there this spring. In the prospect world, there is nothing more valuable—and therefore nothing more rare—than a self-grown elite starter, with those who are merely good quickly entering untouchable territory in trade talks. Which teams are most likely to develop these valuable commodities? To find out, I generated a five-prospect rotation for each team based solely on prospect status (as opposed to closest to the big leagues) and found nine collections that stood out.
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As the Mets embark upon an uncertain rebuilding phase, they're putting their faith in young pitchers, as they've done before.
Believe it or not, most of our writers didn't enter the world sporting an @baseballprospectus.com address; with a few exceptions, they started out somewhere else. In an effort to up your reading pleasure while tipping our caps to some of the most illuminating work being done elsewhere on the internet, we'll be yielding the stage once a week to the best and brightest baseball writers, researchers and thinkers from outside of the BP umbrella. If you'd like to nominate a guest contributor (including yourself), please drop us a line.
Jonathan Bernhardt is a freelance writer born in Baltimore who lives and works in New York City. He is an occasional contributor to the Et tu, Mr. Destructo? blog.
Teams tend to overvalue their own prospects, but that shouldn't keep some of these guys from the trade block.
The final week before the trade deadline was a snoozefest until Wednesday morning, when the Giants and Mets conditionally agreed to a deal that would send Carlos Beltran to the Bay, while the Cardinals, White Sox, and Blue Jays consummated a complicated 11-player exchange in which Colby Rasmus moved to Toronto and Edwin Jackson to St. Louis. Finally some prospects were dealt, but the way teams are more interested than ever in holding onto their own players might be the cause of the big trade holdup in the first place. In Buster Olney’s recent article on ESPN.com, an executive told him, “I think teams increasingly value (or over-value) their prospects. In general, most GMs would rather make financial errors than errors involving prospects.”
Our resident economist looks at who benefited from their late-July deals and who might have made a mistake by standing pat.
As the trade deadline neared, I prescribed who should be buyers and sellers, and now that the deadline has passed, we can see whether those teams ignored their diagnoses. In discussing the rare success that selling teams have when making deadline deals, Steven Goldman wrote last week that “the vast majority of prospects don’t achieve anything close to greatness.” Of course this is true, but it does not mean that selling teams should not try because when these deals do work out, they tend to have very large positive effects. It is important to temper expectations, but that does not mean that selling is unwise. The reason that selling makes economic sense is that buying teams have more value from wins due to their position in the standings than sellers, and making a trade can be a mutually beneficial way to extract value from a player’s contract that you cannot gain by holding on to it.
The sharks are circling but who has the minor-league pieces to entice the Mariners?
The main prize of the July 31 trading deadline may be Cliff Lee of the Seattle Mariners—as we saw last year with the Philadelphia Phillies, the left-hander can dramatically alter a pennant race. So, where's he going to end up? That we don't know (yet), but we can look at the best fits—and which organizations have the minor-league talent to entice the Mariners into a deal.
It's possible that for all the coverage of the Phillies' wheeling and dealing, the biggest story has been lost.
Roy Halladay signed a contract extension today that will guarantee him $60 million over three years, with a vesting option that would pay him another $20 million if he pitches enough innings in the first three years of the deal.
With the Winter Meetings about to begin, here's what to expect from every National League team.
I'm not going to be in Indianapolis-with Kevin, Will, John, and Christina on-site, think of my absence as the Secretary of Agriculture being assigned to skip the State of the Union, to assure continuity of government should disaster strike. That doesn't mean I'm not as geeked for the Winter Meetings as any fan is. I'm not sure we'll get much in the way of transaction action, but the anticipation of movement makes for a fun four days.
Having once been involved in the selection process for the Futures Game, I can tell you first-hand that it's not a simple process. Just like the All-Star Game, there are limitations imposed to ensure that each team is represented, and the US vs. World set-up creates additional challenges certain positions. Still, when the game kicks off (ESPN2 on Sunday at 2 pm ET), there will be plenty of top prospects in action, and for so many fans, it also represents the first time to get an actual look at players you've been reading about, at times for years, so here are some things to look out for.
With multiple issues afflicting their bid for the postseason, what priorities should the Mets place on fixing their assorted problems?
Matt Meyers of ESPN Insider: Welcome to our roundtable on the Mets' trade options. I've been commissioned to lead this conversation, and the plan is to have a back and forth regarding the Mets' trade options in the wake of the injuries to Carlos Delgado, Jose Reyes, and J.J. Putz, not to mention the disastrous performance of Oliver Perez.