Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Tempted By The Fruit Of Another

Via Yuda (Isn't that in Venice?)...

“Although the Nationals were second in the National League in hitting entering Tuesday’s action, they are still looking for a power hitter, who could bat fifth in the order and protect Jose Guillen. According to two sources, the Nationals are targeting Rangers infielder Alfonso Soriano and center fielders Preston Wilson and Vernon Wells, who are with the Rockies and Blue Jays, respectively.

“If Soriano is acquired, he would play left field. Soriano has hit over 30 home runs in a season twice and is currently hitting .291 with 10 home runs and 24 RBIs.

“The Nationals have been after Wilson for a few weeks. He is making $12 million and the Nationals would like the Rockies to pay most of his salary Wilson is coming off an injury-plagued season, but his best year occurred in 2003, when he led the league in RBIs with 141. Wilson is a free agent after this season.

“Wells is off to a slow start with the Blue Jays, but is capable of driving in a lot of runs. He drove in over 100 runs in 2002 and ‘03.

“If Wells or Wilson were on the Nationals, it would mean that Brad Wilkerson would switch to left field.”

Apparently it's not just Frank that hates Ryan Church. It's Jim Bowden too. I guess .750 over the last week isn't good enough for him. Or his .302/ .353/ .492 isn't good enough either.

Just my quick impressions on the rest. I bet we'll all have more to say in comments.

Preston Wilson: Danger, Frank Robinson, Danger! He's old(er), injury prone, and not especially good. Imagine Mike Cameron with slightly less power, less plate discipline, and the range of a dying carp. Even if Colorado pays ever stinking nickle of his bloated $12 MM salary, he'll have a hard time outhitting Church. And Church is a vastly superior defensive centerfielder. (Even Wilkerson is better) In short, there's no upgrade there.

Vernon Wells: Not a bad idea, but he's been a disappointement after some early promise. Is that a sign of stagnation (ala Ben Grieve) or just a slump? The most important point, I guess, is that I can't really envision Toronto trading him -- at least for anything we'd be able reasonably offer them.

Alfonso Soriano: He's not an especially good fielder, but he's probably better than Vidro. Still, they'd move him to left, where he'd attempt to learn a new position. While he's obviously got the athleticism, learning a new position on the fly is always a dangerous proposition. (See: Knoblauch, Chuck; or Biggion, Craig)

Hitting-wise, he was disappointing last year, especially when you factor in the hittastic Ameriquest Field. I suspect he'd rebound quite a bit. But, also remember, he mysteriously aged two years when going from the Yankees to the Rangers. And, he's not all that cheap.

Would any of them be a huge upgrade over what we have now? I'm not completely certain. And, when you factor in how few valuable chits we have, and how important they're going to be either down the road when we have a better idea of our standing in the race, or down the road in future when we need to rely on the vast wasteland of our farm team to replenish the team's aging stock, it might not be the right time to trade.



  • I got that out of today's Nationals Notes by the way. Scroll down to "They Need a Bat."

    By Blogger Yuda, at 5/11/2005 10:43 AM  

  • I'm trying to think if there's anyone on the roster I wouldn't trade straight-up for Wells. Maybe Livan and Wilk.

    By Blogger Ryan, at 5/11/2005 10:45 AM  

  • I think Vernon Wells Version 2005 is going to be closer to Wells Version 2002 or 2004 (20-25 HR 0.270BA 0.325obp 0.460slg) than Wells Version 2003 (30 HR 0.300BA 0.360obp 0.550slg).

    But there is no reason for the Jays to trade him ... especially for what the Nationals would (or make it should) trade for him

    By Blogger Brian, at 5/11/2005 10:46 AM  

  • Sure, I'd trade Ohka, Chavez, Baerga, et al for him.

    But, Toronto's not that stupid. Power hitting CFers aren't THAT common!

    And remember, their owner bumped up their payroll, giving them money to work with. There's no economic incentive for them to ship him out now.

    By Blogger Chris Needham, at 5/11/2005 10:46 AM  

  • I wouldn't trade Johnson straight-up for him either.

    I'm vaguely wondering if Toronto thinks they can stay in the race with more pitching and are liking what they see of Esteban Loaiza.

    By Blogger Yuda, at 5/11/2005 10:48 AM  

  • Vernon Wells is realtively cheap too ...

    By Blogger Brian, at 5/11/2005 10:49 AM  

  • I'd do NJ for Wells in a heartbeat. Johnson will get hurt again, it's just a matter of time.

    Wells' slump last year (and continuing into this year) is troubling, but his BB have gone up every year and he's just heading into his prime.

    By Blogger Ryan, at 5/11/2005 10:51 AM  

  • Ben Grieve is a rather novel comp for Wells, I'd say! (Grieve had old player's skills out of the womb, whereas Wells is pretty all-around athletic.)

    If Ricciardi trades away Wells, especially at his price, for any of our buffoons (non-Rueckels) in the minors, Batter's Baux has just cause to storm the Rogers Centre (!) gates with---in Boswellian terms---pitchforks ahand.

    By Blogger Basil, at 5/11/2005 10:53 AM  

  • You mean Riccardi wouldn't jump at Ohka-Day-Endy for Vernon? ;)

    By Blogger Brian, at 5/11/2005 10:55 AM  

  • Ellis Burks shows up high on both the BP and Baseball-Reference similar players lists for Wells. I'd take Burks's career but healthier.

    By Blogger Yuda, at 5/11/2005 10:56 AM  

  • Yeah, this sounds like Day for Pena - so one-sided as to be impossible. Of course, we don't know what the Nats would be giving up.

    By Blogger Ryan, at 5/11/2005 10:56 AM  

  • I liked some of the recent trade threads on BPG.

    Someone suggested Day and Endy for just about every good player you could think of. We'll throw in Ohka too if you give us Pujols!

    By Blogger Chris Needham, at 5/11/2005 10:56 AM  

  • They sound like O's fans from the past few years. Hey, we'll give you Hairston, plus Eric DuBose, PLUS GERONIMO GIL for Todd Helton!

    Not to pick on O's fans, though. Fans of every team do that; I'm sure we'll do that here from time-to-time.

    By Blogger Basil, at 5/11/2005 10:58 AM  

  • until an owner is selected, the following guys should be untouchable:
    Johnson-Vidro-Wilkerson-Guillen-Livan-Cordero-any prospect that grades out B or higher (there aren't many ... Hinckley, ?)

    and these guys are borderline untouchable

    By Blogger Brian, at 5/11/2005 10:59 AM  

  • No. I've lived in Baltimore. It's perfectly acceptable to make fun of O's fans. ;)

    By Blogger Chris Needham, at 5/11/2005 10:59 AM  

  • If Wells has back problems, Yuda, he's an excellent comp.

    It also means that rougly 2006-'08 are going to suck for him, and he'll resurge in Colorado.

    By Blogger Basil, at 5/11/2005 10:59 AM  

  • That's right; you went to Towson? Or was it UMBC? ;-)

    By Blogger Basil, at 5/11/2005 11:00 AM  

  • I want Vidro traded, frankly. I can't imagine his value's going to get much higher, and he's not a good bet to age well. I'd be all for the Soriano idea if it weren't the cretinous plan to stick him in the OF.

    By Blogger Ryan, at 5/11/2005 11:00 AM  

  • UMBC, baby! Home of the umm.... ummm... Maybe it was Coppin State?

    Yeah, that's it.

    By Blogger Chris Needham, at 5/11/2005 11:01 AM  

  • I'm not convinced that Soriano isn't actually older than Vidro, to be honest.

    By Blogger Yuda, at 5/11/2005 11:02 AM  

  • The BPG board actually bores me right now ... too many guys who can't let go of the past. I don't want to hear the term Kowalickite one more time.

    That combined with the sportstalk radio mindset has turned me off

    By Blogger Brian, at 5/11/2005 11:02 AM  

  • I agree with Vidro. Though, I suspect he'll be our third baseman before too long.

    But, I can't imagine a scenario were they'd actually do that.

    By Blogger Chris Needham, at 5/11/2005 11:02 AM  

  • Maybe we can trade Frank to the Dodgers for Jim Tracy.

    By Blogger Yuda, at 5/11/2005 11:03 AM  

  • Hey Brian, I knew you were a short-timer: never mistake a renter for a buyer, baby! ;-)

    As Chris well knows by now, I'm turned off by the whining about the Post. Move on, guys.

    By Blogger Basil, at 5/11/2005 11:03 AM  

  • I just want to know the point of trading a marketable player (though not a really good one) in Cabrera, for basically Brendan Harris, and then basically determining Harris can't play five seconds after getting him.

    This is like the O's of the late '90s, to be honest. They didn't have many prospects (obviously) among position players, but those they did, they dismissed out-of-hand. (And, yes, I am referring to Big Pick. Look at 1998 in the Eastern League.)

    By Blogger Basil, at 5/11/2005 11:07 AM  

  • How many anti-Baltimore threads do we actually need? I want a filter that excludes anything where DCFan and Washington Senator go back and forth.

    By Blogger Brian, at 5/11/2005 11:08 AM  

  • I wonder how much of that was an Omar versus Bowden thing. Omar made the trade and Frank probably soured on him, because he hit HORRIBLY for him last year.

    By Blogger Chris Needham, at 5/11/2005 11:09 AM  

  • Getting a real GM would help, I think. Also, I'd like to have a manager who doesn't remind me more of Dusty Baker every day.

    By Blogger Yuda, at 5/11/2005 11:10 AM  

  • I'm even less coherent than usual today. I hope you guys can break through my stream of consciousness writing style!

    By Blogger Chris Needham, at 5/11/2005 11:10 AM  

  • On the plus side, we haven't reached the Code Red stage yet, Yuda: Don Baylor.

    Good point on Omar v. Bodes, Chris.

    By Blogger Basil, at 5/11/2005 11:11 AM  

  • Chris - as long as you don't start writing a la Larry King, you'll be OK.

    The Nationals really need to consider bringing up Rick Short. Nothing beats a cold bowl of pudding. Jim Bowden is the class of MLB GMs.


    By Blogger Brian, at 5/11/2005 11:12 AM  

  • We already had my pudding recommendations a few weeks back. The Senate Cafe is the best deal on the Hill! ;)

    By Blogger Chris Needham, at 5/11/2005 11:13 AM  

  • mmmmmmmmm


    By Blogger Rocket1124, at 5/11/2005 11:18 AM  

  • Dusty Baker is an interesting comp. While not quite contemporaries, they both seem to have a similar style and a similarly bloated reputation.

    By Blogger Chris Needham, at 5/11/2005 11:20 AM  

  • And Mike Crudale.

    By Blogger Ryan, at 5/11/2005 11:20 AM  

  • OTOH, Frank is merely curmungeonly and not an actual a-hole. Or Satanic, like Chris Truby.

    By Blogger Basil, at 5/11/2005 11:25 AM  

  • Since it is clear that Frobby/Bowden will not bring up a MI from AAA, would it make sense to talk to Tampa about Julio Lugo or Jorge Cantu? Tampa could certainly use a SP or two or three. Thoughts?

    By Blogger Brian, at 5/11/2005 11:25 AM  

  • Lugo's a longer-term option, probably---and Guzman is a "cornerstone," remember. Cantu would just be buried.

    By Blogger Basil, at 5/11/2005 11:27 AM  

  • I'd take Cantu if they'll part with him. Assuming they won't, Lugo might not be a horrible guy to plug in if he can be gotten cheaply.

    By Blogger Yuda, at 5/11/2005 11:28 AM  

  • Also, Lugo would fit right in with our wife-beatin' team.

    By Blogger Yuda, at 5/11/2005 11:39 AM  

  • I was just about to post something to that effect!

    He and Cordero can discuss whether forehand or backhands are better for slapping, or which model phone is best to punch your wife with.

    Hey... what's Bobby Chouinard doing now?

    By Blogger Chris Needham, at 5/11/2005 11:41 AM  

  • Playing golf with Pedro Astacio and Dante Bichette.

    By Blogger Ryan, at 5/11/2005 11:42 AM  

  • Vernon Wells seems pretty cheap to me relatively-speaking.

    By Blogger, at 5/11/2005 11:43 AM  

  • 7-10 months with good behavior? [add rim shot here]

    By Blogger Brian, at 5/11/2005 11:43 AM  

  • Nothing says Merry Christmas quite like putting a gun to your wife's head and making her beg for her life. Happy Birthday, Jesus!

    By Blogger Chris Needham, at 5/11/2005 11:45 AM  

  • Youth, we need to trade for youth! None of the main four starting infielders are going to be worth much of anything five years from now.

    By Blogger Rocket1124, at 5/11/2005 11:51 AM  

  • Or five minutes from now, for that matter.

    By Blogger Ryan, at 5/11/2005 11:52 AM  

  • Here's a thought ... Vinny to the Dodgers for young players

    By Blogger Brian, at 5/11/2005 11:53 AM  

  • You must have even less faith in DePo than Plachke does!

    They need a 3B, but I can't see them making the push for Vinny now. Especially as he continues to revert to expectations.

    By Blogger Chris Needham, at 5/11/2005 11:55 AM  

  • Nor do I think that Bodes would trade "veteran leadership" ...

    By Blogger Brian, at 5/11/2005 11:57 AM  

  • What do the Dodgers have worth us taking?

    Also, what are the odds of DePodesta taking Vinny?

    By Blogger Yuda, at 5/11/2005 11:57 AM  

  • Speaking of Bichette, anyone remember the specific SI article about it, before he got really big (figuratively and literally)?

    Man, the things he made that poor woman do.

    By Blogger Basil, at 5/11/2005 11:58 AM  

  • IIRC, the Dodgers have a highly rated farm system

    By Blogger Brian, at 5/11/2005 11:58 AM  

  • I still think it's a bit early to be giving up players. I'm not quite ready for the fire sale.

    I don't think this team is a playoff team, but strange things can and do happen. Let's wait til June before we start shipping parts elsewhere.

    And it's important from a marketing aspect. Vinny, for better or worse, is well-liked. And as long as he's not killing us on the field, we've prolly gotta stick with him.

    By Blogger Chris Needham, at 5/11/2005 11:59 AM  

  • Bodes would get killed if he traded Vinny. Signing him was one thing, but I don't think he CAN trade the guy now. Unless things have died down recently, 3/4 of RFK's crowd would sprint after him with pitchforks.

    By Blogger Basil, at 5/11/2005 11:59 AM  

  • How about we trade Vinny to New Orleans for Brendan Harris?

    By Blogger Ryan, at 5/11/2005 11:59 AM  

  • Oh, and he also CAN'T trade him for another few months, per the CBA.

    By Blogger Basil, at 5/11/2005 11:59 AM  

  • I like that idea, Ryan!

    By Blogger Chris Needham, at 5/11/2005 12:00 PM  

  • We could even throw in a player to be named Guzman.

    By Blogger Ryan, at 5/11/2005 12:01 PM  

  • Oh shit...

    plane just went overhead...

    and all the buildings are being evacuated. I can see it out my window.

    By Blogger Chris Needham, at 5/11/2005 12:08 PM  

  • fingers crossed ... good luck

    By Blogger Brian, at 5/11/2005 12:09 PM  

  • Just a small Cessna, it seems like.

    By Blogger Chris Needham, at 5/11/2005 12:15 PM  

  • This isn't the first evac they've had -- they're surprisingly regular. It's just they aren't usually accompanied by the sounds of F-16s overhead.

    By Blogger Chris Needham, at 5/11/2005 12:16 PM  

  • keep us updated, chris. does it seem like the reagan funeral scare? when a small plane just wandered off course?

    By Blogger Rocket1124, at 5/11/2005 12:20 PM  

  • It seems like the same kind of event. Just a small plane. It's all clear now though.

    By Blogger Chris Needham, at 5/11/2005 12:20 PM  

  • Chris -- your update beat CNN/WaPo by 5 minutes

    By Blogger Brian, at 5/11/2005 12:25 PM  

  • Warning flares fired at Cessna by F-16s

    By Blogger Brian, at 5/11/2005 12:26 PM  

  • The worst part is that I want lunch, but there are probably 40,000 staffers out there now, grabbing something while they can!

    By Blogger Chris Needham, at 5/11/2005 12:28 PM  

  • Yeah, when I was working on the House side, I used to have info to my wife by a good 10-15 minutes before any of the major news services had it.

    By Blogger Yuda, at 5/11/2005 12:29 PM  

  • If I had posted right when I first knew you would've been really impressed! :P

    At any rate, like I said, I'm surprised at how frequent these sorts of things happen. Once every other month or so. And they rarely rise to the level of coverage of this. I usually never find out what the hubub was.

    By Blogger Chris Needham, at 5/11/2005 12:33 PM  

  • Well, it interrupted the SD/Cincy game's start

    By Blogger Brian, at 5/11/2005 12:37 PM  

  • And somehow Cinci found a way to give up runs.

    By Blogger Chris Needham, at 5/11/2005 12:42 PM  

  • So where's the meta-chat today?

    By Blogger Ryan, at 5/11/2005 12:52 PM  

  • not a good first start for Tim Stauffer of the Padres. Bottom of the first ...


    By Blogger Brian, at 5/11/2005 1:02 PM  

  • Anyone have a pic of Svrluga so we can have some prayer cards printed up?

    By Blogger Rocket1124, at 5/11/2005 1:05 PM  

  • Boy, there's some real dogs for lunch games today.

    By Blogger Yuda, at 5/11/2005 1:07 PM  

  • Sox/A's might be worth a listen

    By Blogger Brian, at 5/11/2005 1:08 PM  

  • I'll just relapse to my default Phillies choice.

    By Blogger Yuda, at 5/11/2005 1:23 PM  

  • Rocket, if you go back through the Nationals Journal blog he and other Post staffers kept, there's definitely some St. Barry pics there---including an intriguing one, featuring him setting on a bleacher (hushed tones for prurient interests) EXPOSING HIS PASTY WHITE THIGHS.

    By Blogger Basil, at 5/11/2005 1:40 PM  


    Ask and ye shall receive

    By Blogger Brian, at 5/11/2005 1:50 PM  

  • thanks! didn't think of that.

    here's my favorite

    Boswell looks like a truck hit him

    By Blogger Rocket1124, at 5/11/2005 1:51 PM  

  • Aieee! Nick Nolte's in the pressbox!

    By Blogger Chris Needham, at 5/11/2005 1:52 PM  

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