Mack’s Morning Report – 12-27 – Ryan Reid, Masahiro Tanaka, Willie McCovey, Mike Hegan, Oakland


28-year-old righty Ryan Reid was claimed by Mets off waivers from the Pittsburgh Pirates on Monday. Reid had a very nice showing with a 1.65 ERA in 11 major league innings with the Pirates in 2013 and had a decent 7:3 strikeout to walk ratio. In Triple-A Indianapolis, Reid threw an additional 59 1/3 innings with a 2.73 ERA, 1.20 WHIP to go with 56 strikeouts and 18 walks. - http://gradingonthecurve.com/2013/12/25/pre-christmas-waiver-wire-musical-chairs/  

This should come as no surprise… the Mets will not be bidding for the services of Rakuten Golden Eagles SP Masahiro Tanaka (what do you expect here… the guy only went 24-0, 1.24).

Frankly, I side with the Mets here. It’s completely ridiculous to have to pay some foreign team the sum of twenty million dollars just for the privilege of offering someone who hasn’t thrown on inning of major or minor league ball over one hundred million dollars. This just isn’t fiscally responsible.

I could take the $120mil and sign me both Stephen Drew and one of the top relievers still out there on the market.

The Dodgers and Yankees are expected to lead the way here, for different reasons. The Dodgers, under their new ownership deal, and just cash rich and seriously profitable. The Yankees, on the other hand, are just money stupid. They derive tremendous profit from the Yes Network and are pre-spending their new TV deal money that kicks in next year. They also didn’t invest their real estate profits with a Ponzi crook or build a new stadium using wise guy loans.

Willie McCovey was born in Alabama in 1938. As an aside, think about Alabama for a moment. Willie Mays was born in Westfield, Alabama in 1932. Henry Aaron was born in Mobile. Alabama in 1934. Two-time All-Star pitcher Bob Veale was born in Birmingham in 1935. In 1938, McCovey was born in Mobile, Billy Williams was born in Whistler and two-time All-Star Don Mincher was born in Huntsville. Tommie Agee was born in Magnolia in 1942 and Lee May was born in Birmingham in 1943.

McCovey was the seventh of 10 children. He dropped out of school to help support his family. At 17, he attended a New York Giants tryout camp. In a twist of fate that would affect both men’s lives, McCovey ended up at the same tryout camp as another future Hall of Famer, Orlando Cepeda. The two young men — both huge first baseman with immense power and born just four months apart in age — would find themselves banging heads for the next 10 years. http://joeposnanski.com/joeblogs/no-72-willie-mccovey/ 

Marty Appel –

“Two Yankees of the '70s passed away in recent days.....catcher Ed Herrmann, and first baseman Mike Hegan. You won't find this in his stats, but Hegan's first MLB at bat came with the '64 champion Yankees, and he flied out deep to right field in front of Yankee bullpen. Another 10 feet and it might have caught by his father, coach Jim Hegan, seated on the bench right at the bullpen gate. Wouldn't that have been something. Mike came back in '73-'74 and was the team's regular first baseman until Chris Chambliss arrived early in '74. Terrific defensive player. "Hoggy" Herrmann was Thurman Munson's backup catcher for a season; a bulldog of a guy. Both gone too young; players of the '70s shouldn't be leaving us."

The Oakland Athletics finished 2013 with baseball's fourth-lowest payroll, fourth-best offense, and best clubhouse chemistry. Debate has centered on whether the latter two are related. There’s nothing objectionable about “good guy” genes—it’s a solid organizational goal to have. But chemistry alone doesn’t put runs on the board, and if a team is missing the talent, they better find the runs elsewhere. The 2002 Athletics discovered them in walk deities and college arms; once those methods pervaded front offices, the A’s slipped back into losing. Was chemistry the only undervalued commodity of their recent resurgence?
As the baseball community obtains more knowledge, roster construction strategies evolve. Previously undervalued talents like walks and defense are now accepted constructs. The A’s are Hollywood-infamous for adopting them before their competitors while prices were low. After a 74-win 2011, they cheaply signed Brandon Inge and Jonny Gomes, who Brandon McCarthy claimed bolstered the clubhouse DNA to the tune of 20 wins. But Inge and Gomes were two of several players who also bolstered a less-visible statistic: fly ball-to-ground ball ratiohttp://regressing.deadspin.com/a-decade-after-moneyball-have-the-as-found-a-new-mark-1489963694 


Unknown said...

Sorry Mack I disagree with you. If tanaka cost you $120 mil for 7years, you would make about half of that back just off selling his jerseys in Japan. And not to mention the extra tickets they would sell at the gates.
If we got him we can then package Gee or Niese to Arizona for one of their young shortstops.
So 18 mil a year minus half in extra jersey sales (compared to gee). So that leaves you with a 9 mil payroll, now minus Gees 3mil and that leaves you with roughly 6mil extra. Even it cost you $10 mil extra I would prefer tanaka/gregoriuos to Gee/drew.
I know it's a gamble but so is every other international free agent.
Also next year you can package niese for some more youngsters and keep the farm stocked with youngsters.
Just my 2cents worth

Reese Kaplan said...

1. I understand Paul Blair also just passed away. He is a comparable for what we hope Juan Lagares can become -- a former shortstop forced to switch to CF known more for his glove and arm than his bat but he became respectable at the plate, too.

2. Given the Mets' highly questionable offense, I agree with Mack that bidding on Tanaka would not necessarily be in their best interest. However, there's no excuse why they weren't in on Jose Abreu or other position players over the past few years -- Yasiel Puig, Yoenis Cespedes, etc. -- who most definitely could have helped them in their greatest need. I hear the conventional wisdom about "Oh, he hasn't played an inning of MLB yet so he's not worth the risk." How about Jason Bay or Oliver Perez or Barry Zito or Vernon Wells or Carl Crawford? They had played MLB yet turned out not to be worth the long term contract risk. It's a gamble either way, but being conservative is not necessarily going to win ballgames and more than taking chances will. However, if you do nothing, you ensure mediocrity. If you take a chance, at least you're TRYING to improve.

Mack Ade said...

Zozo -

From "a reader" of Mack's Mets:

ZOZO is wrong regarding jersey sales. All of those sales are put into one giant pot and split equally among the 30 MLB teams. Having Tanaka on you team doesn't equal more jersey money so in those terms it doesn't make more sense to sign him.

There are other financial benefits to having him on your team, but Jerseys are certainly not one of them.

Thought you'd like to know that Mack.

Mack Ade said...


Also, the point I was trying to make was the $20mil posting fee.

Herb G said...

The "fly ball/ground ball" concept is interesting. I have long thought that fly ball pitchers were much better suited to Citifield than ground ball pitchers, but I never thought about it for hitters. Actually, I've thought that it all depended on the individual skills of the hitters. Those with speed should concentrate on hitting grounders which they could beat out or which could find a hole, while those with pop should hit 'em in the air, hoping they clear the fences or find a gap. How many times did we hear Gary Cohen say that Jose Reyes wasn't paid to hit fly balls after he popped up? Maybe I need to rethink my philosophy.

Ernest Dove said...

Tanaka makes no sense for the Mets on a 7 year deal....unless they turn into the Yankees or Dodgers, that would mean that either Harvey, Wheeler or both would be gone before they hit free agent market. Lets put our trust in the homegrown pitching meeting their expectations....
And someone/anyone please sign Drew already so we can move on.

Ernest Dove said...

There's only so many prospects named wheeler, d'Arnoud and Syndergaard that the Mets can pluck from other teams every year........and for every Marlon Byrd, there are at least 2-3 Colin Cowgill's.
I guess I'm still the same dope who thinks the Mets can win 81+ games with their current 25 man roster in 2014.

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