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Wednesday, December 21, 2005

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» Debits and Credits with Win Shares from Balls, Sticks,
If the Phillies trade Bobby Abreu, they need to either get a fantastic pitcher -- someone much better than Wheeler and Backe -- in return or make darn sure they know that Shane Victorino is a good big league player. [Read More]

» Debits and Credits with Win Shares from Balls, Sticks,
If the Phillies trade Bobby Abreu, they need to either get a fantastic pitcher -- someone much better than Wheeler and Backe -- in return or make darn sure they know that Shane Victorino is a good big league player. [Read More]

Comments

I wouldn't give up Abreu for the names mentioned. I would hold onto Bobby at least until July. The Phillies need his production, even if his second half was woeful. Michaels and Victorino cannot be counted on to replace his historic numbers.

I agree - I'm not sure the offense is all that it's cracked up to be, esp without Abreu... we have a lot of hackers and strike-outers (?) in Burrell, Howard (who I see kinda disappointing the faithful), Rollins (though who knows at this point what he'll do), etc. Bell/Nunez and Lieberthal aren't producers per se, and Rowand is an unknown. So, I'd rather hold on, see just how good we can be, and if need be, dump Abreu in July if we suck and get a ton from a contending team..... like we should have done with Wagner and Abreu say last July.

I hope the Phils have sense enough not to trade Abreu for a few stop gap players. He has consistently put up Hall of Fame numbers throughout his career and will continue to do so. Joe Dimaggio "made it look easy", Dick Allen's "a lazy bum", Mike Schmidt "didn't play with passion", Bob Abreu "plays indifferently" - these are fan perceptions and don't represent on the field reality. Philadelphia fans make heros of players in retrospect but never seem to respect them in the present.

isn't trading for relievers one of the hallmarks of the era we're trying to leave behind? i don't want to overvalue bobby and get nothing for him, but the moment you say "it's time to trade" somebody, the desparation can stink up the place. in reality, to the phils, he's worth what a roy oswalt is to the astros (disregarding any "tough competitor" issues we want to bring up). taking away abreu puts alot of pressure on ryan howard to be a centerpiece of a lineup, which is not something this organization should do to that kid, in all fairness. if bobby's power declines, he might finally be ready to hit out of the two spot where he really belongs.

Biggest reason to consider trading Bobby: His value will likely never be higher. He's approaching the age where skills typically decline, and after his All-Star HR derby performance, everyone knows about him now. That said, I think I'd wait a bit, too, at least until the names in return start sounding better.

GR said: "Isn't trading for relievers one of the hallmarks of the era we're trying to leave behind?"

JW: No. Just bad relievers.

Durso said: "Biggest reason to consider trading Bobby: His value will likely never be higher."

JW: Absolutely. Three people ahead of you, Mike Roberts said "He has consistently put up Hall of Fame numbers throughout his career and will continue to do so."

I hope potential buyers share that opinion.

But do you think Backe is the best we can get? Plus a prospect? (I don't even know which pitching prospects Houston is meant to have)

I mean, if it were for Verlander (Detroit) or Cain (SF) or Papelbon or Lester (Boston) or something in that area, then I'd definitely say go ahead and roll the dice ("Investigate me" - which movie am I quoting, for 200 pts). But for others, I say "meh". I don't see a reason to jump quite yet.

None of the proposed or rumored people who would come to the Phillies for Bobby are of his caliber. Moreover, the comment that gr made about putting too much pressure on Howard is an excellent one. The Phillies cannot afford to trade Abreu at this juncture.

more thoughts: on one hand, his value might never be higher, on the other hand, how high is his value right now, really? of all the possible deals, none really appear to improve the club in the short OR long term, other than "moving salary." i think bobby could fetch you something much sweeter next season or at the deadline (risk acknowledged), especially with a guy like gillick manning the phones. as much as i'd love to see shane v start a blaze in RF in April, let's not get carried away trying to remake this team copletely overnight. if you got, say, matt clement and a QUALITY position prospect for him, that's an idea.

on a completely separate note, i'm startng to warm up to the wade miller idea. its the kind of gamble that really doesn't lose you anything if it doesn't work out. what's he going to do, take gavin floyd's spot in the rotation? so what?

The only guy that I would trade Abreu for is Oswalt or Petitte. There's no way that we could let a talent like that go for average relievers. If the Astros won't do it, then keep Abreu. Backe? You've got to be kidding me.

The problem is that "OPS with RISP," or similar metrics, is the only common ground we have for this argument. I remember at-bats where Abreu came up empty in big spots; I also remember at-bats where he delivered. Then how do you compare those situations to games in which, say, he hit a two-run homer with the Phils already up by a run, which didn't seem "clutch" at the time but proved decisive after a reliever gave up two?

This isn't to say I wouldn't trade him. Given contracts and needs elsewhere, I'd do it if the right deal came up. Jason Lane and Dan Wheeler, or something like that, would interest me. But Abreu is the closest we have to a "sure thing" in the Phils' lineup: Burrell we know can go cold, Utley won't take anyone by surprise (not to mention that a minor leaguer, he was good, but not 2005 good; don't be shocked if last season was his career year), and Howard is going to have his struggles. Michaels and Victorino are nice players, but they won't combine for Abreu's numbers.

I think the odds are high that if we trade Bobby, we'll end up regretting it: the truism that "if you get the best player in the trade, you win the trade" might apply here.

Pitching wins games though. Backe's arm would win more games than Abreu's bat.

You know why this trade is appealing to me? Because this is exactly the type of cornball deal that works out better for the team you least expect every single time.

It might appear that I'm shooting low by not mentioning Oswalt / Pettitte, but I did it because I presume the one-on-one trade market for corner outfielder is 4-5 starting pitcher and relief pitcher, even for someone of Abreu's caliber. The other rumor I considered realistic was Marquis and someone, which was comparable to this.

The No. 1 priority is setup man. The rest of the bullpen can come from the huddled masses, but not this spot. They need someone who can come in, pitch 70+ innings and save a few if our 38-year-old closer needs rest, or a CAT scan.

why not sign joe borowski the money we were willing to give looper and give up no one instead of giving up the best hitter on the team?

There's nothing we can do this year with the money we'd save on bobby's contract. Gillick would be essentially conceding the playoffs this year. I'm not against rebuilding in all cases, but a team that had a chance at the playoffs until the final day of the season doesn't need to be ripped to pieces. I'd much rather roll the dice with borowski, see what this team is made of, and deal bobby in july if it looks like it wasn't meant to be.

PS Johnny Damon's 4 years x 52mill makes bobby look underpaid at 2 x 30. So freeing up payroll isn't necessarily going to guarantee us more bang for our buck next offseason.

Perhaps I've bought into the statistical metrics too much, but given that they are often mentioned in this blog to support arguments, you can't have it both ways. Bobby Abreu is one of the darlings of stat heads. Put simply, his approach wins games. To say "look at his production AB by AB" is to lose perspective on a player as a whole.

Bobby Abreu is a stud. He is NOT why we seem continually on the brink, but never in, the playoffs. That can be traced to a glut of mediocrity elsewhere. Aquiring Backe/Wheeler/prospect does not fix that. Replacing Abreu for a combo of Victorino and Michaels makes it worse.

Goodbye 88-76, hello 83-81.

never trade an all star outfielder with speed and (declining/overestimated) power for a couple of set-up men. you don't trade for relievers, you build them or get lucky in grabbing one. you don't target any middle relief no matter how good they looked the year before. rheal cormier was the best reliever in baseball a few years ago. every year since he's been boo'ed at the end of every outing.

let's be realistic here and not over react to a need for middle relief. we just end up overusing our middle relief anyway.

i don't know how i'm the only one who thinks they should bring back ugie (provided he gets out of jail).

I meant 88-74 and 83-79.

cause there are 162 games in a season. Not 164.

I knew that.

With Jacque Jones and Rondell White now off the free agent market, the Astros' other options to improve their OF -- assuming, as I do, that Bagwell is pretty much toast and Berkman will man 1b -- are dwindling. Maybe that ramps up the price tag for Bobby. Overall, though, I agree with the earlier commenters that his value will be much higher in July.

A question: with Damon off to the NY, might there be any interest in Boston for Michaels or Victorino? If so, whom would we be looking to get in return?

And regarding any Abreu to Houston deal ... please recall that the Phils swiped him from Houston (via expansion TB) for one Kevin Stocker.

"Pitching wins games though. Backe's arm would win more games than Abreu's bat."

am i the only one who did a cartoon spit-take when i read this?

a sub-league average pitcher who's never thrown 150 innings in his life will win us more games than one of the best outfielders in the NL?

No, ae, you weren't the only one who resembled a cartoon character on reading the absurd notion that Backe would win more games than Abreu's offense would provide. In my case, it was more like the ones where your head suddenly deflates like a balloon, and goes into a whistling orbit around the room. A team should never trade its best player, unless it's getting a better player in return. I haven't seen that possibility raised in any of the "exciting" rumors attached to Abreu this off-season.

We need pitching, though. I knew what I said was off the wall, but SERIOUSLY.

Abreu is a primary hitter who doesn't miss time. Backe is a complimentary pitcher who hasn't been a mainstay, even though Houston needed starters at #4 and #5. Would the reliever provide enough to make it up? It had better be Lidge, if that's even possible. I wouldn't pull the trigger for Backe and Wheeler.

Abreu is a primary hitter who doesn't miss time. Backe is a complimentary pitcher who hasn't been a mainstay, even though Houston needed starters at #4 and #5. Would the reliever provide enough to make it up? It had better be Lidge, if that's even possible. I wouldn't pull the trigger for Backe and Wheeler.

Okay, so we get rid of Thome who even though he was in decline, he still scared every defense in the league, come on, was anybody covering the third base side when he was at bat? Thus opening up Abreu to come through in the clutch when teams sighed relief at Thome striking out..(again) and dropped their guard, which explains why Abreu's first half was much better than his second. Teams focused so much more on him and getting him out. Howard and Utley benefited from the Abreu sigh of relief.
So why trade Abreu? Yeah his second half was sub-par, but was still better than Bell's entire year. Keeping Abreu allows our *prospects, Howard and Utley* to develop without defenses and our lovely fans destroying their potential. It also allows Abreu to still come in the clutch. And if we do toss Abreau like so much bad meat, who exactly will the Phils use as our centerpiece? Utley, who is gonna be under enough pressure to remake his last year numbers, or Howard who will have to make double his numbers based on a full season's worth of play. Burrell has reformed into the player he is gonna be, while not likely the player we want him to be. Abreu is the centerpiece of this franchise now that we lost Wags (free-agency), Thome(trade), Wolf(injury), Urbina(umm...), so who's gonna put butts in the seats this season.
TODD PRATT!

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