Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Free Agent Frenzy!

Its a thin crop.

1) Mike MacDougal. It might seem hasty to trade the Royals' most effective reliever, but the bottom line is that I do not trust MacDougal to achieve any sustained success over the long term. Fool me won't fool me again. However, his 2005 performance and excellent arm MUST be tantalizing to contending teams in need of bullpen help. The Royals hold all the leverage here - they don't need to move MacDougal to save any salary, and the worst that could possibly happen is that he stays and maintains his success - so they should be in a position to hold out for a pretty good prospect or two.

Potentials: Atlanta, Los Angeles, Boston
Prospect Grade Minimum: B
Chances of Trade: 60%

2) Jeremy Affeldt. I wouldn't suggest that Jeremy Affeldt is a clubhouse cancer, but he's not afraid to let the Royals know that he's not happy with his role or even place on this team. As I've stated numerous times, he hasn't earned the right to grumble given his putrid performance and propsenity for injury. Any team that acquires Affeldt would be taking a flyer on a guy who's been on the DL for most of the year and isn't getting any better, but GMs are suckers for hard-throwing left handers. Affeldt is into his second arbitration year so the Royals will be on the hook for a seven-figure salary next season if he stays, which doesn't help ABs leverage but probably doesn't hurt it very much either. I just think Affeldt needs a change of scenery to reach his potential.

Potentials: Boston, Toronto, Texas
Prospect Grade Minimum: B
Chances of Trade: 30%

3) Terrence Long. Long is probably an average fourth outfielder, but he's a veteran who will play hard for a team in contention. I wouldn't have any problem if Long stayed the rest of the season, but I could understand moving him if it meant that a player like Matt Diaz would finally get a chance to play in 70 games to see if he's worth anything at all. Probably not going to happen, though.

Potentials: I don't rightly know
Prospect Grade Minimum: C
Chances of Trade: 40%

4) Jose Lima. Who else would acquire the worst starting pitcher in baseball besides the Dodgers, where at least achieved a modicum of success last season?

Potentials: Los Angeles Dodgers
Prospect Grade Minimum: Just leave, Jose
Chances of Trade: 110%

5) Others:

Tony Graffanino will probably be an attractive target as a utility infielder/bench bat for a contending team as well. He has no power but gets on base at a reasonable clip and has pretty decent discipline. Mike Sweeney is virtually untradable, both due his contract and the because the Royals seem to harbor a misguided notion that a Sweeney trade would somehow alienate their fan base even more than it already is.


At 11:53 AM, Blogger cfos said...

Affeldt also intrigues gm's because he could be a starter, too. Someone might get the idea they could trade for 'reliever value' and get 'starter value'.

At 10:41 PM, Blogger DL said...

You think so? I think Affeldt's starting days are over. You'd think he'd make a good starter given his physique and his repertoire (big fastball, big curve), but to this point he's simply been more effective as a reliever (when he's not injured).

At 4:05 PM, Blogger Daniel said...

I agree with Craig -- even though we've all seen that Affeldt's likely more valuable as a reliever (as he may actually be able to do well there), other teams are likely to disregard the Royals past work with Affeldt (esp. give their track record with pitchers) and do whatever they want with him. I don't think starting again with another team is out of the equation for him.

Graffy and Mac are the two most tradeable, in my opinion, given that Graffy's a known factor (i.e. utility-guy, cheap) with the added bonus of hitting at the best clip in his entire career with a well-nigh 800 OPS.

Mac has an anti-aircraft gun disguised as his right arm, and with a under-4.00 ERA, teams might fool themselves into thinking he's harnessed his stuff, when, heck, perhaps his control is good enough to trade for. If he keeps striking 'em out at a 9.76 per/9 clip, I guess walking a batter every other inning is tolerable.


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