Heyman: Ruben Amaro turned down deals for Michael Young and Carlos Ruiz

Well, this is depressing. Via Jon Heyman of CBS Sports:

Yankees GM Brian Cashman and Phillies GM Ruben Amaro spoke on the phone around 3 p.m. ET Wednesday, an hour before the trade deadline, at which time Amaro confirmed what the Yankees had been reading in the media: Michael Young was willing to waive his no-trade clause to go to the Yankees.

So Cashman offered to send a prospect to Philly and pay the $5 million to go on Young’s deal. And Amaro rejected the deal.

Then Cashman asked about Phillies veteran catcher Carlos Ruiz, and was told that Ruiz, who has one home run this year, is not available.

It is understandable to not sell Ruiz since his value is at its lowest point and the organization doesn’t have any true Major League-ready catching prospects yet. Ruiz may be willing to accept a one-year deal with the Phillies, allowing them to bide their time for Tommy Joseph or Cameron Rupp. That’s one justification, but ideally, one strives to get anything of even modest value for a 34-year-old catcher on the verge of free agency.

To not trade Michael Young, however, is mind-boggling. The Phillies have two third base prospects in Cody Asche and Maikel Franco, the former recently promoted and looking to prove himself at the Major League level for the first time. Young serves no purpose for future Phillies teams. That the Yankees were willing to A) give up a “prospect” and B) pay the remaining $5 million Young is owed was a dream come true. Reports had one or the other being realistic.

Now, not only is Young still on the roster while the Phillies got nothing of value, he will be usurping playing time from Asche and Darin Ruf at third and first base, respectively:

The Phillies still have the entire month of August to trade players via waivers, so ending July empty-handed isn’t the worst thing. Coming up empty handed and choosing to stunt the development of Asche and Ruf, however, is the worst combination of events. These final two months should be used to let the presumptive future of your team get as much playing time as possible so they can fail and learn, and eventually succeed.

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87 comments

  1. Phillie697

    August 01, 2013 11:49 PM

    Whether Lee was “high priced” was in our control!!! Why don’t you get that already?

  2. hk

    August 02, 2013 05:31 AM

    I find it hard to believe that Lee will become sell-able in the off-season unless they are willing to pay a portion – and a larger portion than they probably would have two days ago – of his salary. Let’s compare (on the assumption that the acquiring team will not pick up the option for Lee’s age 37 season):

    * A team acquiring Lee on 7/31 would owe him $70.8M for the remainder of 2013 plus 2014 and 2015.

    * A team acquiring Lee after this season would owe him $62.5M for 2014 and 2015.

    If a team like Boston decided not to acquire the 34 year old Lee, who we all agree is better than Peavy, for the rest of this season in which they are almost certain to benefit from having Lee in the playoffs, what makes anyone think they’ll give up better prospects and pay a higher annual salary ($31.25M per season) for Lee at the outset of next season? Further, since Boston now has Peavy under contract for 2014 to go with Lackey, Dempster, Lester and Buchholz, one more potential buyer for Lee in the off-season is off the market. Now, admittedly, I don’t know if what is being reported – that RAJ would not pay any of Lee’s salary – is true and of course I was not privy to the negotiations. However, if he did not at least find out what prospects were available if he paid increasing amounts of Lee’s contract, he failed to do his due diligence.

    To me, the failure to trade Lee now means it’s more likely that he will finish his contract with the Phillies and/or that they’ll get less and pay more for him in the future. If he continues the downward trend that we’ve seen over the past few years or (even worse) suffers a fate similar to that of Roy Halladay, a return similar to the one that the Cubs got for Matt Garza may look good in about a year’s time. Contrarily, maybe Lee will continue to be a 4+ WAR pitcher for a few more years and he and the version of Hamels that we’ve seen lately can combine to lead the 2014 Phils back into contention. Here’s hoping for the latter…

  3. Phillie697

    August 02, 2013 09:54 AM

    @hk,

    I’m assuming you are now not on the fence? LOL.

  4. hk

    August 02, 2013 11:45 AM

    Phillie697,

    I’ll admit that I was wrong. After the Revere trade, when I thought RAJ was going to use the money saved by acquiring Revere to go get Anibal Sanchez – because we all know, or thought we knew, that RAJ loves himself some starting pitching – I was optimistic that this team could win 87+ games. When RAJ chose to spend the money on Lannan, Adams, Durbin and the two Youngs instead, I figured they would still be above .500 and I clinged to the hope of contention as late as the All Star Break. However, the 2 losses to the Mets and the first loss or two in St. Louis ended my dream and brought me back to the reality of what we have here. Then, when I spent time looking at Lee’s contract and how back-loaded it is, I was sold that trading Lee and paying a chunk of his salary was the best bet*.

    The thought of watching Michael Young and Chooch in red pinstripes for the remainder of this season never appealed to me and the thought of watching Cliff Lee, Ryan Howard, Chase Utley, Jimmy Rollins and Jon Papelbon continue to decline in red pinstripes no longer appeals to me.

    * Necessary caveat so that Pencilfish, Cutter and joecatz don’t jump all over me…I don’t know what they actually could have acquired if they had been willing to pay part of Lee’s salary.

  5. joecatz

    August 02, 2013 11:58 AM

    HK,

    I’m not, and never have been, against paying a chunk of Lees salary if the return is franchise altering.

    I say this based on the opinion, and the reality that the Phillies have no intention of not trying to compete in 2014 and 2015. If that ideology changes trading Lee for less becomes a different story.

  6. hk

    August 02, 2013 12:18 PM

    joecatz,

    My opinion, which I came to recently after taking a minute to look at Lee’s contract on cot’s, is that the commitment to Lee gets progressively worse and Wednesday’s deadline (or this August in a waiver deal) was (is) the best time to trade him. The combination of Lee most likely continuing to slowly decline, Lee’s cost continuing to rise and the Red Sox most likely not being a potential buyer of Lee makes for a bad equation in ever getting a good return for Lee. At this point, it looks like the best play will be to keep Lee and hope he remains a 4+ WAR player in 2014 and 2015 and that RAJ can build a contender around a rotation fronted by Lee and Hamels. Unfortunately, I don’t hold out a lot of hope that RAJ can do this.

  7. hk

    August 02, 2013 12:20 PM

    joecatz,

    One more thing…my opinion is what I think the Phillies should do and is not changed by what I think they plan to do or will do. I don’t disagree with you that they will try to compete in 2014. RAJ has said as much. I just think that RAJ’s vision is short-sighted and misguided and, as a fan, I wish they would build for 2015 and beyond.

  8. Phillie697

    August 02, 2013 12:44 PM

    @hk,

    That was my contention all along, that keeping Lee is at best a break-even exercise, and I rather turn a break-even exercise into a net-gain exercise by getting some prospects and then spending that money saved elsewhere. It was just a more prudent move.

  9. Phillie697

    August 02, 2013 12:52 PM

    I also think that as passionate as joecatz has been about keeping Lee and his reasoning, implicit in his belief he has steadfestly avoided to state is that he views the position I advocate as more risky not because it is more risky merit-wise (it’s not), but because keeping Lee means putting less of our chance to be competitive in the hands of RAJ than my alternative, which WOULD probably require a good GM to carry out. But like I said to him, if I have to factor in one Ruben Amaro Jr. in any analysis, I would just as well give up and recite verses of T.S. Eliot to make myself feel better.

  10. Brian

    August 02, 2013 03:10 PM

    “No the garza return sucked”

    That’s not how I’m seeing it at all. You know Garza’s only signed for another 2 months right?

    The Cubs got Mike Olt + for like 13 starts of Matt Garza. That’s 1 WAR if the Rangers are lucky. For 6 years of Mike Olt. And I’m pretty sure the Rangers are paying the rest of his salary too.

    That’s highway robbery.

  11. joecatz

    August 02, 2013 03:23 PM

    697,

    no, i view your position on trading him to be wrong because you are willing to trade him for assets like Wil Middlebrooks because Lees salary is high and hes “getting old”

    to adress what HK said above,
    “the commitment to Lee gets progressively worse and Wednesday’s deadline (or this August in a waiver deal) was (is) the best time to trade him.”

    thats where I’m diametrically opposed to trading him now. he shows NO SIGNS of decline, other than a stiff neck, and the contract gets better, not worse as time goes on.

    and I might be wrong about this, but if Cliff Lee is dealt, it has to be an offseason trade, when more interested parties are in the mix. This years offseason is ten times better than last week for a lot of reasons, the biggest being the weak free agent pitching market.

    You need a team like Kansas City who feels they are a piece away from contending, or a team like Toronto, who decided this was the year to spend and compete, for a realistically good deal to go down.

    deadline deals (grienke aside last year) have brought lesser prospect returns the past two years than offseason ones.

    Seattle was willing to deal Walker and Franklin for Upton.

    KC moved Myers for Shields.

    Arizona parted with Bauer

    The Blue Jays dealt half their farm system, including DArnaud, for Dickey, Reyes, et al.

    and the biggeest prospect at the deadline dealt was Mike Olt.

    You need the Astros, or the Twins, or the Mariners, or the Cubs to decide its time to go for it to make the kind of deal for Lee.

    Thats an offseason thing.

    Otherwise the return is just not worth what you give up production wise.

    697,

    I really apreciate you passion man, I do, but where we differ, really differ is that you would take a lesser than market for the sake of getting a return.

    thts all. I disagree with that completely.

  12. joecatz

    August 02, 2013 03:28 PM

    “The Cubs got Mike Olt + for like 13 starts of Matt Garza. That’s 1 WAR if the Rangers are lucky. For 6 years of Mike Olt. And I’m pretty sure the Rangers are paying the rest of his salary too.

    That’s highway robbery.”

    Thats a good return for two months of Matt Garza. And the cubs took it, even with having just drafted their future 3B and having Rizzo at 1B because they had no interest in resigning or keeping Garza.

    Its a horrible return for Cliff Lee. thats the point.

    Olt dropped 50 spots on the prospect ranking has eye problems and plays a position where you have Franco and Asche, and the Rangers have been trying to sell him to anyone interested for over a year.

    Thats trading to make a trade and its horrible value for Cliff Lee.

  13. joecatz

    August 02, 2013 03:33 PM

    and Brian, in case you didnt understand that, that comment was in response to someone saying

    “Raise your hand, knowing what you know now, if you’d rather have traded Lee for the prospect haul that the Cubs got for Garza (keeping in mind we probably could have gotten a little more) than… this.”

    My answer was an emphatic NO.

  14. joecatz

    August 02, 2013 03:37 PM

    also 697,

    your last line there the “keeping in mind we probably could have gotten a little more”

    thats the biggest misconception people make when they see other trades AND relate them to their team. assuming that since your guy is better that team would have given you more than they gave for the lesser guy.

    Teams make deals like they do because they give up WHAT THEY WANT.

    Texas wanted to deal Mike Olt. Boston prefered to deal Iglesias. You don;t magicaly get Bogaerts and Profar instead if you pay Cliff Lees salary.

    because they want to KEEP those guys. and if someone else is willing to take less, the deal is the one they take.

  15. joecatz

    August 02, 2013 03:45 PM

    the other part of this that gets lost is we have a vested interest in one team.

    An opposing GM has a vested interest in his team. Ben Cherrington is still talking to the white sox about Peavey and still looking to deal Iglesias as a centerpiece if he can even IF Ruben is willing to back off.

    So if you assume that in a perfect world, Ruben is willing to eat HALF of lees contract, to make the money even to Peavey, and willing to come down off of Bogaerts for say Bradley….

    ben Cherrington still calls the White sox.

    and the deal for Cliff Lee ends up being Avasail Garcia and the other guys for lee and about 30mm.

    so all of a sudden, avasail garcia costs you 30mm, and you have 15mm to play with next year for Lees replacement.

    Its not a deal that happens, and thats how most deals fall apart.

  16. hk

    August 02, 2013 03:47 PM

    “You need a team like Kansas City who feels they are a piece away from contending, or a team like Toronto, who decided this was the year to spend and compete, for a realistically good deal to go down.”

    joecatz,

    With Cliff having the ability to block trades to 21 teams, I find it hard to believe that he’ll end up in a place like Toronto or KC. In fact, with Boston most likely out of the market for him, I still believe waiting will make it hard for them to get a better return for him in the off-season than whatever they could have gotten from Boston if they picked up part of his contract.

    Now, if we are talking about what I think they will do, not what I think they should do, I think Lee will be pitching Opening Day 2014 as he’s a large part of their plan to contend next year.

  17. hk

    August 02, 2013 03:56 PM

    So if you assume that in a perfect world, Ruben is willing to eat HALF of lees contract, to make the money even to Peavey, and willing to come down off of Bogaerts for say Bradley….ben Cherrington still calls the White sox….and the deal for Cliff Lee ends up being Avasail Garcia and the other guys for lee and about 30mm.

    joecatz,

    You have a lot of assumptions in there. How do you know that Ben Cherington thinks Iglesias for Peavy is a better deal for his team than JBJ for Lee? Yes, JBJ is a better prospect than Iglesias, but if the money is relatively equal, how can you be sure that Cherington wouldn’t part with the better prospect to get the pitcher (Lee) who gives his team a better chance of winning the World Series this year and who does not hamstring him financially in 2014 and 2015.

  18. hk

    August 02, 2013 08:06 PM

    joecatz,

    How does Lee’s back-loaded contract get better as time passes? He’s owed $70.8M for 2 2/3 seasons, but that’s more like 3 seasons for a contender because he’s helping them for the remainder of this season and the post-season. Since the rest of this season is virtually meaningless to the Phillies, they are going to pay him $70.8M for at most 2 meaningful seasons.

  19. hk

    August 02, 2013 08:52 PM

    “he shows NO SIGNS of decline”

    Age 29 season: 7.1 WAR
    Age 30 season: 6.5 WAR
    Age 31 season: 7.0 WAR
    Age 32 season: 6.4 WAR
    Age 33 season: 4.9 WAR
    Age 34 season: 4.1 WAR if he pitches the rest of the way like he’s pitched so far

  20. joecatz

    August 03, 2013 12:40 PM

    “he shows NO SIGNS of decline”

    xFIP since 2008: (the 7.1 war season)

    3.52
    3.64
    3.06
    2.68
    3.06
    3.06

    innings pitched:

    223
    231
    212
    232
    211
    144 through 20 starts

    K/9
    6.89
    7.05
    7.84
    9.21
    8.83
    8.14

    BB/9
    1.37
    1.67
    0.76
    1.62
    1.19
    1.37

    hes given up a little in HR/9 but thats mainly due to the increased control. He simply does not throw pitches outside the zone.

    Argue pitcher war all day folks. theres noted flaws in that, but peripherally hes insanely good. Insane. and no, his war wont STAY ar 4.1 f he pitches the rest of the way like he has it will improve. he’s on a 6.5 fWAR pace.

    IF THATS THE CASE, he had one year (2012) where he put up 5 fWAR instead of 6-7. Please.

  21. joecatz

    August 03, 2013 01:00 PM

    “How does Lee’s back-loaded contract get better as time passes? ”

    for a team like boston for example, he is owed roughly 12mm LESS in the offseason for two years of Cliff Lee. next deadline, that number drops by another 15mm.

    the point here is that the last year is the year that people are scared of. barring a career threatening injury, there is less financial risk, and less cash needed in a deal every day for Lee. The only thing you lose are the ten starts this year.

    the risk in the offseason is identical as the risk right now. its just cheaper.

    “You have a lot of assumptions in there. How do you know that Ben Cherington thinks Iglesias for Peavy is a better deal for his team than JBJ for Lee? Yes, JBJ is a better prospect than Iglesias, but if the money is relatively equal, how can you be sure that Cherington wouldn’t part with the better prospect to get the pitcher (Lee) who gives his team a better chance of winning the World Series this year and who does not hamstring him financially in 2014 and 2015.”

    I don’t. But if your choice in Peavey through 14 and you keep Bradley or Lee through 15 and you keep iglesias? I know what I’d do.

    and the point was more on the Phillies side there. You pay out 30mm for Avasail garcia. The PROSPECTS value, as a cheap controllable asset, takes a huge hit there. From the Phillies side, paying off that much money to make the deal you HAVE to get an impact guy. You have to. Otherwise theres no point.

    “With Cliff having the ability to block trades to 21 teams, I find it hard to believe that he’ll end up in a place like Toronto or KC.”

    So do I. But thats the KIND of team that has to get involved for it to make sense, unless the Cardinals suddenly decide that they’re in on him in the offseason. It has to be a prospect rich team that is willing to trade off assets to make a run now.

    and it doesn’t mean that Lee has to GO THERE.

    its complicated for sure, but imagine a scenario where Lee is willing to go to say, the cardinals in the offseason and St.Louis doesn’t want to give Up Taveras.

    This is ALL HYPOTHETICAL

    but they’re more than willing to move Matt Adams and David Freese. two guys with value, that the Phillies might not want either.

    But maybe Seattle wants Freese?and maybe they decide to get Freese they’ll give up one of their young arms.

    and maybe St.Louis doesn;t want to give up TWO prospects. but to get Lee they’ll offer ONE really good prospect (say Carlos Martinez) Plus who Seattle sends.

    all of a sudden theres traction.

    thats how it gets done.

  22. hk

    August 03, 2013 02:14 PM

    joecatz,

    2.8 WAR (I thought it was 2.7) in 2/3 of a season projects to 4.2, not 6.5, for a full season. Your statistics, while showing that Lee remains very good, ignore the context of the declining offensive environment. In that regard, he’s declining relative to other P’s. His xFIP- has gone from the insane (73 in ’10 and 69 in ’11) to 79 last year to 81 this year. Again, still very good, but declining nonetheless.

  23. hk

    August 03, 2013 02:21 PM

    Cliff Lee’s insanely good, yet you would rather have 1 1/3 seasons of Peavy while keeping JBJ than 2 1/3 seasons of Lee (at a price comparable to Peavy’s) while keeping Iglesias. Really?

  24. Larry

    August 03, 2013 10:19 PM

    “Argue pitcher war all day folks. theres noted flaws in that, but peripherally hes insanely good.”

    Finally a full blown sabermetrics fan who recognizes this.

    I may not agree with everything you say Joe, but it’s about time you had the balls to say this. You have stated a lot of comments that I agree with.

    Maybe you said this before, but I’ve only seen your comments for the past few months. I know your statement to be 100% true, but why do you feel this way? What are the flaws of WAR in your opinion?

  25. joecatz

    August 03, 2013 11:04 PM

    I don’t think WAR is flawed. But WAR, especially for Pitchers doesn’t predict, it shows past and present value. You can use it as an indicator, but its just wonky. there are so many fantastic other pitching metrics like xFIP and SIERRA that actually give you a really accurate idea of future value, and its so easy to look at BB and K rates and heat maps and velocity that there are better ways to guage pitching.

    WAR is a be all end all for people which is fine, but for Pitchers I just don’t like it.

  26. joecatz

    August 03, 2013 11:14 PM

    “2.8 WAR (I thought it was 2.7) in 2/3 of a season projects to 4.2, not 6.5, for a full season”

    HK,

    I took my numbers for that post from BBR. When I looked at your war for 2013 and saw 4.1 I assumed you were using bWAR with for 2013 for CLiff Lee is 4.1. thats what I extrapolated from. His fWAR is at 2.8 right now

    again, theres another arguement right there.

    for every statistic I cite as not declining youll find one where he is declining and I’ll go back and reference heat maps and we can go on for days here.

    You do realize that his 4.9 fWAR was good for 5th in baseball last year, right? Verlander, Hernandez, Kershaw, Gio, Lee.

    also, going back to 2008 you know how many pitchers have done that? 4 war or more every year? one.

    war ranking by years

    2012: 5th
    2011 5th
    2010 1st
    2009 5th
    2008: 2nd

    so please explain to me how thats a regression of any kind. Ke has been a top 5 pitcher every year since 2008

  27. joecatz

    August 03, 2013 11:24 PM

    and on the iglesias thing you guys are missing the point. its a bad deal for the phillies, not the Red sox in that scenario, to pay 30mm for jackie Bradley Jr or Avasail Garcia. That guy has to be worth 3 wins over the next three 2 seasons AND you have to replace Lees wins for 15mm a year. good luck with that.

  28. Larry

    August 04, 2013 12:10 AM

    ” But WAR, especially for Pitchers doesn’t predict, it shows past and present value. You can use it as an indicator, but its just wonky.”

    ” but for Pitchers I just don’t like it.”

    Why do you like it for hitters then? What’s the difference? How does it predict for hitters, but not pitchers?

  29. Phillie697

    August 04, 2013 08:04 PM

    “also 697,

    your last line there the “keeping in mind we probably could have gotten a little more”

    thats the biggest misconception people make when they see other trades AND relate them to their team. assuming that since your guy is better that team would have given you more than they gave for the lesser guy.

    Teams make deals like they do because they give up WHAT THEY WANT.”

    I would love to play poker with joecatz. I’m pretty sure I’d clean out his bank account in about 3 hours.

  30. hk

    August 05, 2013 05:29 AM

    joecatz,

    When you posted, “I don’t. But if your choice in Peavey through 14 and you keep Bradley or Lee through 15 and you keep iglesias? I know what I’d do”, I took that to mean if you were Cherington, you would take Peavy and keep Bradley. Did I misunderstand you? Did you mean you’d part with Bradley and get Lee?

  31. hk

    August 05, 2013 05:50 AM

    joecatz,

    Further, if you are quoting FIP or xFIP, why not just use fWAR? It makes the argument more consistent. And, I agree with you that there are issues with pitcher WAR including whether to base it on ERA or peripheral stats, but I was using my iPad and it was easier to use one stat (WAR and then xFIP-) per post to make the point that Lee is slightly declining. Whether you want to see it or not, Lee is slightly getting worse relative to his peers in this increasingly declining hitting environment. While I continue to agree that Lee is an ace, he is still on a slight decline from his peak. We’ll see whether he can reverse the slight decline and rebound in his age 34 and age 35 seasons to levels that he reached in his age 29 to 32 seasons.

  32. hk

    August 05, 2013 06:06 AM

    “and on the iglesias thing you guys are missing the point. its a bad deal for the phillies, not the Red sox in that scenario, to pay 30mm for jackie Bradley Jr or Avasail Garcia. That guy has to be worth 3 wins over the next three 2 seasons AND you have to replace Lees wins for 15mm a year. good luck with that.”

    This is the comment that seems contradictory to the one I referenced two comments above. If this is your actual belief, that Cherington should overwhelmingly prefer a deal that starts with Bradley and ends with the Sox getting Lee and $30M, I agree with you. Since I think we agree that such a deal is no-brainer for the Sox if it just for Bradley, can we assume that the Sox would also be willing to throw in other prospects? If so, we get closer to my point, which is…if RAJ did not at least pursue the best offer the Sox would make for Lee with ~$30M of salary relief, he made a mistake. I would pass on Lee + $30M for just Bradley, but I’d consider Lee + $30M for Bradley and some combination of Iglesias, Owens, Ranaudo and Workman.

    Of course, this is all speculation. Maybe (contrary to what has been reported) RAJ did pursue this and found out the offers were still insufficient. If so, kudos to RAJ for doing his due diligence.

  33. Joecatz

    August 05, 2013 06:49 AM

    Yeah basically I was inferring that I’d take the lee deal in a heartbeat if I’m Boston but it would have been bad for Philly. Rereading I can see where you’d think the opposite.

    The overlying point on that issue was

    1. You can’t expect a better return because you have better talent. The deal still has to be better for the other guy.
    2. You end up paying too much of lees salary without getting a good enough return for a trade to make sense in this environment.

    And 697,

    You don’t wanna play poker with me. But I’d assume your the guy at the table who bitches for an hour when his aces got cracked by connectors when you slow played them into letting someone crack them.

  34. hk

    August 05, 2013 12:07 PM

    joecatz,

    Thanks for clarifying. Here’s my view in a nutshell:

    * Cherington had to prefer Lee as he is a much better acquisition than the injury-prone Peavy for this year and beyond.

    * Cherington was reluctant to take on a contract that MIGHT be an albatross similar to those that he worked so hard to dump last August.

    * If RAJ makes the Lee contract affordable or even cheap for the Red Sox, Cherington would have parted with multiple top prospects, but not Boegarts.

    * If I’m RAJ and I realize that contention in 2014 is a long-shot, I would think long and hard about trading Lee and $30M for Bradley, Iglesias and Owens, especially if I could flip Iglesias to Detroit for another prospect at a position of greater need to my team.

    Speaking of flipping Iglesias to Detroit, in one of your comments, you mentioned that Iglesias is basically Galvis. If you were RAJ, would you have traded Galvis to Detroit for Avisail Garcia?

  35. hk

    August 05, 2013 12:10 PM

    joecatz,

    One more thing about your “its a bad deal for the phillies, not the Red sox in that scenario, to pay 30mm for jackie Bradley Jr or Avasail Garcia. That guy has to be worth 3 wins over the next three 2 seasons AND you have to replace Lees wins for 15mm a year. good luck with that” comment. This comment ignores the fact that JBJ – and whatever other prospects are acquired – remain in team control long after Lee’s contract expires.

  36. Phillie697

    August 06, 2013 12:16 PM

    I really don’t understand why people are so sour on Middlebrook. Lee for JBJ and Middlebrook is a pretty good deal to me. Back in AAA, his BB% is back up, his K% is way down, a .188 ISO plays really well at 3B, and his numbers are even kept down a little because of a .276 BABIP. Plus he’s one player the Red Sox fans probably wouldn’t cry too much over losing. That deal could have been done, and frankly, I rather have too many prospects at one position than not enough. If you haven’t noticed, 3B prospects are sought after commodities these days. Even if Middlebrook, Asche, and Franco all turn out to be viable everyday players, we can probably flip the excess for some nice pieces. Like, I don’t know, Justin Upton.

    Really no clue why people are so against this trade, but then again, not much point talking about it now.

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