Tuesday, August 01, 2006

We Want A Trade!

Not everyone was happy with Bowden's non-move. Here's a sampling of some who were opposed to Bowden's restraint.

  • Banks of the Anacostia compared it to his Prom Night.
    what Bowden has done is put the Nationals in a lose-lose situation. If they do manage to sign him, Bowden will likely overpay for what Soriano will likely deliver in value. If we don't sign him, the Nationals will have spent $10 million, traded Wilkerson, Sledge, and a young arm (Gallaraga), and missed out on 2-3 (and perhaps more) A- to B-level prospects in exchange for two draft picks.

    I didn't see the A-level prospects he was talking about. The rumored Ayabar/Saunders/McPherson deal was just that, a rumor. The LA Times says that that was what they offered for Tejada, and that their offer for Soriano was much less.

  • Curly W thinks that Bowden is a lousy poker player.
    As for Soriano, well, Bowden got what he deserved. He told everyone who would listen about how eager he was to shop Soriano and how high the price would be, to the point where other GMs seem to have just tuned him out. Bowden was bluffing so hard at poker that the other 29 guys at the table just checked their bets.

    It takes two to trade. The other GMs knew what Bowden's price was; he said it loudly and repeatedly. If you tell the person that you're playing that have a 2 and an 8 over and over, is that really a bluff? The other GMs just weren't willing to meet his price. You can make an argument that he should've settled for less (a reasonable argument with which I'll disagree), but focusing on his bluster ignores the heart of what he said.

  • Nationals Nation wonders what this does to Kasten's stated strategy, and wonders what Bowden's real plan was -- if there even was one.
    I understand what people are saying: there were no good offers on the table, so Jim Bowden decided to stand pat...but no one believes that was his plan going into the trade deadline: Jimbo was hoping that another GM would get careless and give something of value for a two month rental. When that failed to happen, then all the sudden people are calling him a genius for not giving in. Well I'm not one of them. Now we will lose our bargaining power if Soriano doesn't sign on the dotted line for an extension. If he doesn't, we're gonna have to settle next year for what we get in the draft.

  • OMG has a thoughful post that, while not disapproving of the deal, worries about (probably legitimately) what it means for the future.
    I think in the end, I really didn’t want to see Soriano back. He’s having a magical year, but I think that is it. A magical year. Like Luis Gonzalez when he hit 57 or to bring it more locally like Brian Roberts last year. The Nats are getting the maximum one can squeeze out of Soriano and basing decisions on it as if it were an every year occurance.

    I think he misses the mark on the offense (see his comments for more), but his point about the effect on the pitching is right. $15 million means the team can't afford Jason Schmidt or Barry Zito. We'll have to hope for a health John Patterson, a non-BP-throwing Livan, and some magical pitching fairies to dig us up another Hector Carrasco or 9.

  • At least the good fans in Section 320 are thrilled.
    Its a BOLD MOVE!! I am glad they kept him. Soriano will become the FACE OF THE FRANCHISE. The POSTER BOY MARQUEE Player. Alfonso easily could still be around when the Nationals truly come competitive. In the meantime, WE, AS FANS, have someone to look forward to seeing every single time we go to RFK and the new stadium.

    Section 320 can continue to lead off the game with the Alfonso!! SORIANO!!! Cheer. And, my wife, Sohna, will continue to attend as many games as possible to see NUMBER 12 play for the NATS. I can't tell you how happy THAT MAKES ME IN MY HOUSE!!



      In all seriousness, I actually have a post on this. Granted, it's a bunch of non-comittal fence straddling crap, but it's there.

      By Blogger Rocket1124, at 8/01/2006 1:23 PM  

    • You have a blog? Seriously? ;)

      Well, here you go. The adoring public will be clicking over in droves.

      By Blogger Chris Needham, at 8/01/2006 1:25 PM  

    • Yeah, I can't decide what to do with it. I obviously don't have enough time to make it a good blog, but I still like having it there in case I have something to say.

      By Blogger Rocket1124, at 8/01/2006 1:30 PM  

    • I'm sorry, but how again does Soriano playing LF for us for 2 more months help us?

      By Blogger platyjoe, at 8/01/2006 1:51 PM  

    • Did you read the post below this one?

      How does it hurt us? The prospects being offered weren't really can't-miss ones.

      The only way this non-trade bites the team in the ass is if it means they sign him to a long-term extension such that (and this isn't a given) they can't afford to improve the pitching.

      By Blogger Chris Needham, at 8/01/2006 1:55 PM  

    • This may be off the mark, but maybe keeping Soriano is less about baseball and more about business. Seriously, would anyone but us die-hards go see the Nats without Soriano for the rest of the year. He'll get some folks in the door and help the bottom line at least a little in the short run. And if it really is a dream season he's having, then letting him go at the end won't be such a loss.

      By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8/01/2006 2:06 PM  

    • I think there's something to the underlying sentiment there, but when it comes down to it, it's not really going to affect the bottom line this season. Most of the tickets are already sold -- season tickets and advance sale.

      They're getting 2,500 or so day-of-game tickets, and that might go down a bit, but it's not going to crush them if it does. It's not like those are 2,500 diamond club seats.

      By Blogger Chris Needham, at 8/01/2006 2:13 PM  

    • Well, yeah, but don't those season ticket holders make the decision whether or not to renew? A lot of those folks bought their tickets with the first half of last season in mind, and this season lacks any such bright spots (except, that it, Alphonso Soriano). More importantly, how is a city like DC going to build a fan base if their plan is basically to suck for a while? I don't think the business strategy and the baseball strategy are necessarily separate: build an enthusiastic fanbase and players might want to come here or resign for less or come out and play a little harder, etc. Am I crazy on this one? Soriano for five!

      By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8/01/2006 2:18 PM  

    • I don't think the season ticket holders (most of them) renewed because of that. They renewed because they're corporate whores, they love baseball, or they want priority for the new stadium. (maybe all three!)

      Sure, losing Soriano will be a blow to the offense, but if that 15 million gets dumped into pitching, don't you think they'll be an ok team, too?

      By Blogger Chris Needham, at 8/01/2006 2:21 PM  

    • I agree Soriano provides the excitement that all the casual fans want to see. I just don't want to see a team that never makes the playoffs with one really great home run guy. If they plan to expand the payroll and add great pitching in ADDITION to Soriano then I'm riding with bells on.

      By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8/01/2006 2:22 PM  

    • I'm #2 & #3. I renewed because I love baseball and have some strange thought that I might like to get good seats in the new stadium.

      By Blogger Soji Slade, at 8/01/2006 3:21 PM  

    • If you trade Soriano for 3 prospects (2 of them pitchers), you still get the 15 million savings at the end of the year to spend on major leaguers.

      By trading him now, you've gotten a solid first step in fixing the farm system. THE FARM SYSTEM IS NOT GOING TO BE FIXED BY GETTING 2 CAN'T MISS PROPECTS THAT ARE GOING TO BE HERE IN WASHINGTON SOMETIME NEXT SEASON. Prospects does not mean "can't miss", it means prospects.

      Fixing the farm sucks, but it needs to be done if we're going to be a competitive national league team in 5 years.

      By Blogger platyjoe, at 8/01/2006 3:44 PM  

    • Exactly.

      But you're working under the assumption that other teams were offering can't-miss prospects.

      In everything I've read/seen, that's not the case.

      It's well and good to deal in hypotheticals, but that wasn't the reality of what happened.

      Teams WERE NOT giving up top prospects for players.

      By Blogger Chris Needham, at 8/01/2006 3:47 PM  

    • The other GMs with outstanding offers were playing chicken with Bowden. The best offer he got was probably early last week. After that, I'm sure the Sori's trade value actually went down.

      It seemed to me a number of other teams (notably the White Sox/Tigers/Twins) were each just floating the idea to see what the other two would consider parting with. Chicago and Minnesota think they can catch Detroit.

      By Blogger Ben Folsom, at 8/01/2006 6:07 PM  

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