Instant Analysis – JA Happ Re-Signs with the Yankees

A quick look into the signing of JA Happ by the Yankees

This offseason, I will be diving into the notable moves made and their impact to their individual teams and potential fantasy baseball implications.

 

JA Happ resigned with the Yankees for 2 years and $34M (plus a 3rd year vesting option for $17M).  Again, I was very close but no cigar.  I had J.A. Happ going to Toronto for 3 years and $48M in my Presidente’s 2018-2019 MLB Offseason Free Agent Predictions.

A proven lefty with a great track record in the AL East and a shorter term contract… can’t ask for much more in this market.  I am never a fan of giving a P more than 4 years because the of risk.  Granted a team like the Yankees can (and have) take that risk but it has never really worked out.  As far as the “Mid-tier” goes this year, I’d take Charlie Morton and JA Happ as the best value + performance of any free agent pitcher on a multi-year deal.

 

Happ’s stats from 2016-2018 (TOR (77 GS) and NYY (11 GS)):

47-21, 3.44 ERA, 518 IP, 498 K/157 BB, 3.91 FIP

Even better, here are his stats vs the AL East in 2018:

vs BOS – 4 GS, 1.99 ERA, 1-1

vs TB – 3 GS, 1.53 ERA, 1-1

vs TOR –  1 GS, 3.38 ERA, 1-0

vs BAL – 5 GS, 1.55 ERA, 3-0

 

Although the dollars are a little high for a SP entering his age 36 season, it is a good signing in my opinion.  The Yankees didn’t have to make the 5-6 year-long mistake that they are accustomed to make.  Happ has the kind of stuff that will age well and health permitting, will be a solid #3/4 for them in 2019.

Grade – B+

 

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*Photo by Keith Allison

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Instant Analysis – Rays/Indians/Mariners 3-Way Trade

A quick look into the 3 team trade with the Rays, Indians, and Mariners

This offseason, I will be diving into the notable moves made and their impact to their individual teams and potential fantasy baseball implications.

Finally some real action in Vegas.  A three team deal has been announced between the Rays, Indians, and Mariners.

Mariners receive:

  • 1B/DH Edwin Encarnacion
  • Comp Pick (Round B, Pick #77 from CLE)

Indians receive:

  • 1B/DH Carlos Santana
  • 1B/OF Jake Bauers
  • Cash considerations ($5M from TB + $1M from SEA)

Rays receive:

  • UTIL Yandy Diaz
  • P Cole Sulser

 

For the Rays:

They trade the only real 1B on their roster to CLE (and cash to Mariners for some reason) for a 27 year old utility infielder with no power or speed and a 29 year old minor league pitcher… not even a prospect.  This makes zero sense for the Rays.

Grade – F

 

For the Indians:

The Indians shifted some money around and brought back a familiar face in Carlos Santana.  Santana is owed $35M over the next 2 seasons vs Encarnacion’s $25M in 2019.  The end game here is they now owe Santana $29M over 2 years, rather than $25M to EE for one year.  Plus they get a useful bench bat in Bauers.

Grade – B+

 

For the Mariners:

Finally, Dipoto wins a deal!  The Mariners basically took on ~$6M in 2019 to clear their 2020 books AND got a comp pick in round B… and they can probably move EE pretty easily if they wanted to.  Even if they don’t move EE, they save a ton of money and could potentially strike gold in the draft and add to their system.  GREAT move for the Mariners.

Grade – A

 

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*Photo by Keith Allison

Instant Analysis – Joe Kelly signs with the Dodgers

A quick look into the signing of Joe Kelly by the LA Dodgers

This offseason, I will be diving into the notable moves made and their impact to their individual teams and potential fantasy baseball implications.

Relief Pitcher Joe Kelly has reportedly agreed to a 3 year/$25M deal to join his opponent in the 2018 World Series, the Los Angeles Dodgers.  I had Kelly returning to the Red Sox for 3 years and $27M in my Presidente’s 2018-2019 MLB Offseason Free Agent Predictions.  The money was in line but I chose the wrong World Series team.

There is no question Kelly has electric stuff, but he has problems locating.  Take a look at his past two seasons:

2017 – 58 IP, 2.79 ERA (3.49 FIP), 52 K/27 BB

2018 – 65.2 IP, 4.39 ERA (3.57 FIP), 68 K/32 BB

They show similar peripherals, but vastly different results.

But here’s a fun stat… In the past 3 years with Boston, Kelly has allowed 1 ER an 17 K/0 BB in 17.2 IP in the postseason.  How’s that for showing up on the big stage?

Overall, he has the stuff and experience that the Dodgers need come October… but can he harness it?  It’s not a huge risk for someone like the Dodgers, but an overpay in my opinion.  For my money, I’d rather take a flier on someone like Carson Smith, David Phelps, or AJ Ramos combined for the same amount.  We’ll see how it shapes up though.

Grade – B

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*Photo by Keith Allison

Instant Analysis – Jeurys Familia signs with the Mets

A quick look into the signing of Jeurys Familia by the New York Mets

This offseason, I will be diving into the notable moves made and their impact to their individual teams and potential fantasy baseball implications.

Jeurys Familia has reportedly agreed to a 3 year/$30M deal to return to the New York Mets.  I had Familia going back to the Mets (to be their closer) for 3 years and $36M in my Presidente’s 2018-2019 MLB Offseason Free Agent Predictions.

This one is a little surprising because you would think he could’ve found a closing gig somewhere… I mean this is a guy that had 51 saves in 2016 for the Mets…  Maybe he wanted to show loyalty to the team that stood by him after he was arrested for domestic violence?  Who knows?

The Mets paid damn near “closer money” for Familia to setup for Diaz and they are looking at a formidable 7-8-9 in 2019.  Familia finished 2018 in Oakland and combined to throw 72 IP, 3.13 ERA (2.65 FIP) and 83 K/21 BB.

Overall the money is high for a setup man, but less than I expected him to get.  I think there would be better deals for setup men but their FAMILIArity probably goes a long way… further than that lame dad joke.

Grade – B+

 

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*Photo by Arturo Pardavila III

Instant Analysis – Tanner Roark traded to the Reds

A quick look into the trade of Tanner Roark to the Reds

This offseason, I will be diving into the notable moves made and their impact to their individual teams and potential fantasy baseball implications.

For the Reds:

They receive a SP with the ability to eat innings. The last two seasons, Roark has left a lot to be desired and I thought he would be a non-tender candidate. He averaged 181.2 IP per year with a 4.50 ERA and a 4.20 FIP. He doesn’t strike out many batters out and doesn’t light up a radar gun… but like Ivan Nova, you know he’ll be out there every five days. Like the White Sox trade for Nova, I think the Reds would’ve been better off signing someone via free agency. The bright side is he is a groundball pitcher and the Reds should have a good defense behind him?

Grade – C-

For the Nationals:

They save ~$9M… that’s it. The guy they got in return, Tanner Rainey, got lit up in his debut last season and has mediocre minor league stats. I can’t see him being anything more than AAA depth, if anything. Again, Roark should’ve been non-tendered.

Grade – C

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Instant Analysis – Lance Lynn signs with the Rangers

A quick look into the signing of Lance Lynn by the Texas Rangers

This offseason, I will be diving into the notable moves made and their impact to their individual teams and potential fantasy baseball implications.

 

A guy I didn’t even have on my top 30 free agents, Lance Lynn signed a 3 year deal for $30M with the Texas Rangers.

Guys… this absolutely blows my mind.  A guy with a penchant to give up the long ball and coming off a bad year (4.84 ERA and 3.84 FIP) after pitching in the AL for the first time, is handed 3 years and $30M by a rebuilding team.

Rumors had the Rangers in on Charlie Morton, who signed today with the Rays for $30M… did Jon Daniels decide to just reallocate those funds to a worse pitcher?  If you’re rebuilding, you sign high-upside guys to one year deals and try to flip them at the deadline… guys like Matt Harvey, Gio Gonzalez, etc.

Lance Lynn COULD do a mediocre job for the Rangers, but this is a case of too long of a commitment and for a team that isn’t competing in 2019.

Grade – D

 

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*Photo by Keith Allison

Instant Analysis – Charlie Morton signs with the Rays

A quick look into the signing of Charlie Morton by the Tampa Bay Rays

This offseason, I will be diving into the notable moves made and their impact to their individual teams and potential fantasy baseball implications.

 

Again… so close, but yet so far.  Charlie Morton has reportedly agreed to a 2 year/$30M deal with the Tampa Bay Rays.  I had Charlie Morton going to Philadelphia for 2 years and $36M in my Presidente’s 2018-2019 MLB Offseason Free Agent Predictions.  I think he is one of the best deals available this winter in terms of performance and no worries of a long-term contract.

Time for another blind test for two free agent contracts signed by pitchers and their last two seasons before free agency.  Eerily similar stats.

Player A (Age 37)

64 GS, 3.27 ERA, 27-20, 416 IP, 339 K/100 BB, 3.67 FIP, 5.3WAR

Player B (Age 35)

55 GS, 3.36 ERA, 29-10, 313.2 IP, 364 K/114 BB, 3.53 FIP, 5.3 WAR

 

Now let us see who they are and their contracts.

 

Player A

John Lackey – 2 years/$32M

Player B

Charlie Morton – 2 years/$30M

Overall, I think this is a great deal for the Rays… depending on how they use him.  I have to assume he would occupy a normal starting rotation spot and that would be a great #2 behind Cy Young winner Blake Snell.  At only 2 years, there is also limited risk for the frugal Rays and he will be off their books by the time they need to trade Snell away.

Grade – A-

 

More Instant Analysis – Trades/ Transactions

 

*Photo by Keith Allison