* Justin Upton talks heated up in the GM meetings, with conculded yesterday. The team we heard the most were the Boston Red Sox, but according to Sports Illustrated’s Jon Heyman, the Arizona Diamondbacks are looking for Daniel Bard and Jacoby Ellsbury. The Red Sox are unlikely to part with those two, when they can sign Jayson Werth for just money.
Other teams interested are the Yankees, Rockies, Padres, Dodgers and Rays.
* Derek Jeter was reportedly offered a 3 year $42 mm contract by the Yankees. If I were him, I would jump on that. But according to sources, Jeter is looking for at least a four year deal, and maybe up to six.
* The Tigers began talks with Adam Dunn yesterday, and even thought reports origanlly indicated they were deep into talks, they were just preliminary. The Tigers are also known to be targeting Adrian Beltre, Victor Martinez and Manny Rameriz. It is possible they could sign Martinez and Dunn
The Rockies are interested in both Upton and Gavin Floyd and Kevin Millwood
Jonathan Papelbon is unlikely to be traded
Rangers, White Sox, Blue Jays, Red Sox and Rays interested in Miguel Olivo
Orioles interested in De La Rosa
Josh Willingham getting trade interest
Yesterday we took a look at the Pittsburgh Pirates, now it is time to look at Seattle.
The Mariners were predicted by most people to win the American League West this season, because of their off-season additions. They added Cliff Lee in the trade with the Phillies, signed Chone Figgins, and acquired Brandon League for Brandon Morrow. They were projected to be one of the best defensive and pitching teams in the league.
…..That was not really the case. The Mariners finished 10th in the American League in fielding, only Boston, Kansas City, Cleveland and Anaheim behind them. Figgins had 19 errors, primarily at second base. Josh Wilson had 20, playing shortstop and third base. Jose Lopez made 18 at third base. So that must be the primary concern for the Mariners, right?
No. Have you seen their hitting stats? They finished worst in the American League in runs scored and batting average. And can you see why? Their cleanup hitter, Lopez, hit .239 with three home runs! Their first baseman, Casey Kotchman, hit .217 with nine home runs. Other than Ichiro Suzuki, who hit .315, their highest batting average was .259, by Figgins.
The Mariners will probably look at a first baseman next season. They have Justin Smoak, but he hit only .213 on the season, in both Texas and Seattle. They have Russel Branyan, but despite the twenty five home runs, he hit only .237. And do not be surprised to see Kotchman be non-tendered.
The rest of the infield does not look so pretty. They still have Figgins locked up another four years, and they are stuck with Jose Lopez and Josh Wilson. There is not too much infield depth after that, with Chris Woodward, Matt Tuiasosopoo, and Mark Mangini. I gave you the stats on Lopez, Figgins, and Wilson. The other three? Woodward hit.158, Tuiasosopoo .173, and Mangini .211. So that infield is not looking sharp heading into 2011. They might pick up a guy like Mark Ellis or Bill Hall to backup the infield and solidify some depth.
Now the outfield, which has some promise. Of course you have Ichiro, but what else? The Mariners are very high on left fielder Micheal Saunders. Saunders hit only .211 when he was up this year, with ten home runs. But it was his first year, and he is a top prospect of Seattle. He was ranked as their third prospect going into the season.
Their center fielder, Franklin Gutierrez, is an interesting case in himself. Gutierrez was acquired from Cleveland before the 2009 season. He did not hit for a high average in Cleveland, but he looked like a promising young player. When he was traded to Seattle, he had a career year, hitting .283 with 18 home runs and 16 stolen bases. Seattle had thought they had something in Gutierrez. This season, he hit .245 with 12 home runs. At age 27, in his fifth year, it’s time to say he is what he is.
The Mariners had yet another problem this season, and that is pitching. Many people,myself included, were calling Seattle the best pitching staff in the league because they had Felix Hernandez and Cliff Lee. Hernandez had a terrific year, putting up Cy Young numbers with a 2.27 ERA to lead the American League. His WHIP is 1.06. Cliff Lee had himself a good season too…. Just not all in Seattle.
When Seattle knew they had no shot in mid July, they traded Lee to the New York Yankees. The deal was done all but the paperwork, and Seattle was getting Jesus Montero, one of the best prospects in the game. But Texas jumped in at the last second, and offered Justin Smoak, their top prospect. Seattle ripped up their deal with New York, and sent Lee off to Texas, who won their division.
The rest of their rotation served a problem. Ryan Rowland-Smith, who they considered a promising young player, put up an ERA of 6.35 in 27 games. He will most certainly be non-tendered. Luke French, who Seattle acquired from Detroit for Jarrod Washburn, posted a 4.83 ERA. Jason Vargas, who was acquired from the Mets, had a decent year, with a respectable ERA of 3.83. His career best before that was 4.03 with Florida in 2005. Doug Fister’s ERA soared to 4.11, after leading the American League in ERA for around three months. The last pitcher on the Mariner’s staff was David Pauly, with a 4.07. So that pitching and defense thing? Yeah… That didn’t really work.
The bullpen was not much better. David Aardsma, who was Seattle’s closer last season, five blown saves and an ERA of 3.44. Brandon League had a good year, with an ERA of 3.42 13 holds. He did, however, have six blown saves. Garret Olson, who was acquired from Baltimore, had an Earned Run Average of 4.54 with a WHIP of 1.51. Sean White had an ERA north of five. Two young pitchers who had okay years in the M’s pen were Jamey Wright and Brian Sweeny.
So, what do the Mariners have to fix? Not much, just the bullpen, rotation, hitting and defense. That’s all. Some players Seattle may target in the offseason, trade or free agency, are Daisuke Matsuzaka, Juan Uribie, or Cody Ross
Yes, Total Bases is still here. I have been very busy with theprolaxblog.blogspot.com (remember to go there to help get me on SBN!) and an upcoming YouTube Sports Show. Anyways, here is a very long overdue Sunday Sports Recap!
Well… The Red Sox lost, 4-3 to the Yankees in Yankee Stadium. The Red Sox took the lead in the ninth off Mariano Rivera, with Bill Hall and Mike Lowell driving in the runs. But Jonathan Papelbon surrendered a run and then Hideki Okajima to give the Yankees a win.
But the Patriots won! They beat Buffalo 38-30. The defense was bad, with Darius Butler birned left and right, as well and Brandon Meriwether. But Jered Mayo and Pat Chung had good games! On offense Tom Brady was Tom Brady, with three touchdown passes, two to Randy Moss. Aaron Hernandez also had another awesome day.
In other sports scores: The Jets defeated the Dolphins. Mark Sanchez and Dustin Keller had big games.
The Kansas City Cheifs are 3-0! They beat the 49ers.
The Cowboys actually won a game so the Super Bowl for Dallas is back on! (end sarcasm)
Now for some News and Notes:
* Bruins head coach Claude Jullian said that Blake Wheeler and Tyler Seguin could play center in marc Savard’s absence.
* Jonathan Papelbon was blaming the ump for blowing the game. Phil Cuzzi was bad, but he didn’t give up the hits to Teixiera and Swisher.
* It looks like the Carmelo Anthony deal to the Nets may be off now. I still think he will end up in NY.
* Not much else going on. Remember to check out my YouTube show the internet sport show. It will be up sometime this week. I promise to write here more often now that I am less busy!
Yeah remember that article I wrote bitching to Theo? I may need to remove that. I am Theo’s biggest critic, but I must say so far his moves look good. Marco Scutaro so far for me has been a very pleasant surprise. Solid in the field and is hitting all over the place. John Lackey has been better of late as well. Adrian Beltre- wow. I did not like the pick up as much as first, but he has been great. He may even be an MVP canadate right now.
One thing that worries me is the overuse of Daniel Bard. He is very good, but he is on pace for the scond most appearences in the AL. That worries me. They need another bullpen guy to rely on. I’d love for that to be Hideki Okajima, but they may need to look elsewhere. Maybe Matt Thornton or Phil Coke could be options. Or calling up Robert Manuel.
Last night the Red Sox beat the Diamondbacks 6-2. Dustin Pedroia and Kevin Youkilis hit two run homers.
The Yankees lost to the Phillies 6-3. Jayson Werth and Ryan Howard went back to back.
The Rays lost to the Atlanta Braves 6-2. Our old friend Eric Hinske had an RBI.
Tonight is game seven. Read all about it a BBS.
Here we go:
Red Sox: Contenders
I like the team they have. They are scoring as I thought they would, and their bullpen is getting the job done for the most part. If Beckett can return and give you number three stuff, thats one solid rotation.
A very solid team that is aging, reminds me a bit of the Celtics. They need Teixiera to heat up if they want to go anywhere though. Their bullpen is better than the Red Sox, and so far the rotation has been too. They just need consistency.
Hard to say, they looked great to start the season. But with Boston and New York on their heals, they cannot afford any letups by their pitching, or injuries. Their offense is not as good as the other two teams, especally with Jason Bartlett out. Longoria, Crawford, and Zovrist are their only real options for offense with Upton and Pena slumping. Their bottom of the order is horrendous with Rodriguez and Brieniac. Do they scare anyone?
Blue Jays: pretenders
They ain’t going nowhere, not enough pitching
I made my before-Spring Training predictions, here are my Opening Day Season predictions. Plus, check out the player to watch feature which gives you a player to watch on each team during the reaguler season.
AL East Player to watch:
Boston Red Sox (Jacoby Ellsbury)
New York Yankees (Marcus Thames)
Tampa Bay Rays (Ben Zobrist)
Baltimore Orioles (Nolan Reimold)
Toronto Blue Jays (Adam Lind)
Minnesota Twins (Orlando Hudson)
Chicago White Sox (Jake Peavy)
Kansas City Royals (Rick Ankeil)
Detroit Tigers (Austin Jackson)
Cleveland Indians (Micheal Brantly)
Seattle Mariners (Chone Figgins)
Anaheim Angels (Kendry Morales)
Texas Rangers (Neftali Feliz)
Oakland Athletics (Brett Anderson)
Philadelphia Phillies (Jayson Werth)
Atlanta Braves (Jason Heyward)
Florida Marlins (Mike Stanton)
Washington Nationals (Nyjer Morgan)
New York Mets (Kiko Calero)
St.Louis Cardinals (Colby Rasmus)
Chicago Cubs (Randy Wells)
Cincinatti Reds (Aroldis Chapman)
Milwakee Brewers (Alcades Escobar)
Houston Astros (Hunter Pence)
Pittsburgh Pirates (Garrett Jones)
Colorado Rockies (Jason Hammel)
Los Angeles Dodgers (Clayton Kershaw)
San Fransisco Giants (Madison Bumgarner)
Arizona D-backs (Justin Upton)
San Diego Padres (Clayton Richard)
1. Evan Longoria
2. Joe Mauer
3. Kendry Morales
1. Albert Pujols
2. Chase Utley
3. Ryan Braun
AL Cy Young
1. Jon Lester
2. Cliff Lee
3. Zack Greinke
NL Cy Young
1. Roy Halladay
2. Chris Carpenter
3. Tim Lincecum
1. Brain Matusz
2. Austin Jackson
3. Desmond Jennings
1. Jason Heyward
2. Mike Stanton
3. Madison Bumgarner
1. Don Wakamtsu
2. Ron Gardenhire
3. Joe Maddon
1. Bobby Cox
2. Tony LaRusa
3. Freddi Gonzalez
AL Comeback Player
NL Comeback Player
Those are my predicitions. My Internationl League predictions will be sometime next week.
It’s Opening Day!
Q: it APPEARS a beckett extension is imminent. what do you suppose the chances are theo screws up the v-mart extension? i mean they pretty much have to sign him now that mauer is off the table don’t they?
A: I really don’t like the Beckett deal to be honest. He’s hurt too much, and you just know he’ll break down. I would have let him pitch in a contract year. As for Victor, I’m starting to get worried they don’t sign him. I would have spent the money on a proven hitter, not a good pitcher that has durability problems. I would think they have to sign him at this point, but I just don’t know with Theo. They do have some good catching prospects, Luis Exposito and Mark Wagner.
Hey Total Bases fans, help me gorw my new blog by starting a community. I am trying to become the SBNation lacrosse blog, but I need a community at Blogger.com first. Click here to help my blog grow! Thank you!