Chat with Jerry Crasnick
Crasnick is the author of "License to Deal: A Season on the Run With a Maverick Baseball Agent," which chronicles the ins and outs of what happens off the field.
Send your questions now and join Crasnick Wednesday at 4 p.m. ET!
Jerry Crasnick (4:00 PM)
Hey, everybody. I have a story on the site with my Cy Young and Cy Yuks of the Decade. But it looks as if most of the questions are Hot Stove related. Send 'em along!
Jerry, Keith Law mentioned how the losers in the Halladay trade appears to be the Phillies. However, aren't the real losers the Angels? They lose Lackey, miss out on Halladay and Cliff Lee goes to their division rival.
Jerry Crasnick (4:02 PM)
Dave, I agree with you that this trade has tightened the vise even more on Angels GM Tony Reagins to make a move. Yes, the Phillies farm system took a bit of a hit. But I'm sure the Phillies think they countered it by locking up Roy Halladay to a multiyear deal. That was huge.
Hi Jerry. Any update on the Holliday-Cardinals negotiations?
Jerry Crasnick (4:05 PM)
Mike, Buster Olney has done a good job putting the Holliday-Cardinals talks in perspective. I'm really wary of reports that the Cards are offering Holliday eight years and $130 million. If so, how would they ever be able to afford Albert Pujols? I think the Cards have made an offer they're comfortable with, and now they'll wait and see how much of a market Scott Boras has for Holliday. If there's a market out there, Boras will find it. If not, Holliday will fall back to St. Louis at a price the Cards can live with.
Harry (Ithaca )
What other players do you think the Mets are looking at besides Bay and Molina?
Jerry Crasnick (4:07 PM)
Harry, The Mets are serious about Bay, and they'd love to sign Molina, but not for the three years he's seeking. After that, the Mets will monitor the market for back end, innings-eating starters. (Jason Marquis, Doug Davis, Jon Garland, etc). I think the Mets regard those guys as pretty equal in what they bring to the table, so they don't have to rush out and sign one immediately.
Has anyone told Scott Boras that the off-season has begun? Beltre/Holliday/Mike Gonzalez/Washburn/Damon all have not signed anywhere!
Jerry Crasnick (4:08 PM)
Jason, Correct you are: Boras doesn't mind playing the waiting game. But you forgot that Alex Cora and Andruw Jones have found homes. So Scott has a couple of players out of the way.
What is the Cardinals plan B if Holliday doesn't come back?
Jerry Crasnick (4:09 PM)
Jason, There's no real free agent equivalent to Matt Holliday as an outfield bat (other than Jason Bay, and the Cards aren't signing him). I think one option is to shift the focus to third base and sign a Miguel Tejada or Adrian Beltre. The Cardinals would like to have David Freese win the 3B job, but he didn't help his cause any with that DUI arrest.
Mark (Walnut Creek, Ca)
Will A's fans be disappointed with Taylor, I thought Wallace was their man?
Jerry Crasnick (4:11 PM)
Mark, It's hard to tell with prospects. Scouts don't like Brett Wallace's physique or his defense, but he has a chance to be a really good hitter. I wouldn't sell Michael Taylor short. I've seen the kid in action; he's a physical monster. He's very bright and mature (Stanford guy) and he has a lot of tools. I can certainly see him flourishing in Oakland.
Joey (West Palm Beach)
Hughes, Joba, and Montero for Josh Johnson: fair deal?
Jerry Crasnick (4:13 PM)
Joey, Josh Johnson is terrific, but there's no way Brian Cashman would give up that much in trade for him.
Jerry, with the money starting pitchers have been getting this season, does Derek Lowe's $15m/yr salary look close to market value?
Jerry Crasnick (4:15 PM)
Satya, The salary might not be a huge problem, but Lowe is getting up and years and he really wasn't very good in 2009. I think the Braves have to gauge the market for Lowe and Javy Vazquez, who's a free agent next winter, and make their best deal. Frank Wren has put himself in a nice position by assembling an excess of starting pitching. Teams would rather trade for a Vazquez or Lowe, I think, than take a risk on a four-year deal for Joel Pineiro.
Brandon (RVC, NY)
What do you think of the Mets pursuit of Jason Bay. How do scouts view him at this point of his career, and do you believe he has 4 good power years left?
Jerry Crasnick (4:17 PM)
Brandon, Scouts say that 1) Bay's pull power and swing would play well in Citi Field; and 2) his defense isn't as bad as everybody makes it out to be. I'm sure the Mets would be more comfortable with four years. But if it takes five, they need to go ahead and get the deal done. Bay is a streaky guy, but he just turned 31, so I don't think five years is that big a risk with him.
Jerry,With the moves that have transpired within the AL West, are the Angels still the clear favorite?
Jerry Crasnick (4:19 PM)
Todd, I don't think so at all. With the addition of Figgins and Cliff Lee, the Mariners should be markedly better. And now the Angels have lost Lackey. It'll be interesting to see what else Jack Z has planned (Beltre, Bay or another bat), but right now I see Seattle as a chic pick with a lot of people come spring.
Would a rotation of Santana, Sheets, Perez, Garland/Marquis & Maine be able to compete in the NL East?
Jerry Crasnick (4:21 PM)
Harry, That group would be able to compete -- if healthy. But geez, there are some ugly injury histories in that contingent. With Santana coming off surgery and the recent injury woes of Perez and Maine, it's hard to see the Mets taking a chance on Ben Sheets.
Where does the M's projected rotation of Hernandez, Lee, Rowland-Smith, Morrow and Snell now rank in the AL? Just behind Boston? Too many back-end questions?
Jerry Crasnick (4:23 PM)
Justin, That's a potentially very, very good rotation. I talked to a baseball guy yesterday who said Ryan Rowland-Smith might be poised for takeoff, and we all know how electric Morrow's stuff is. If they can get Ian Snell's head screwed on straight, that's a very nice 5. One other thing: Jack Zduriencik has assembled a terrific defensive club behind them.
Will the Cubs and Hendry get anything done this offseason? The Bradley deals seem to be at a stand still. I would love to have Byrd but unless we move Bradley that seems impossible. The reality is that they were an average team and haven't done anythign to make themselves better. What hope should I hang on to as a Cubs fan?
Jerry Crasnick (4:24 PM)
Darrin, I wouldn't call it frustration, but from hanging around the lobby in Indy last week, it was clear the Cubs are dying to get this Milton Bradley situation resolved. I don't think the John Grabow signing has done much to pacify the masses.
Melquisedec Reyes (Houston ,Tx)
Hey Jerry what starting pitchers in free agency help the Houston Astros if they sign them.
Jerry Crasnick (4:27 PM)
Melqui, I thought the Astros were broke, and they've already signed Brandon Lyon and Pedro Feliz and traded for Matt Lindstrom. I'm not sure what else Ed Wade has planned. As I mentioned earlier this winter, Wade loves to collect former Phillies, and there's a connection to Brett Myers. But I have no idea if that one is on the Astros' radar at the moment.
Michael (Sacramento, CA )
Any chances the Giant's get a bat this Winter? We keep hearing Bay or Atkins or Laroche or whatever but there doesn't seem to be any urgency from the front office.
Jerry Crasnick (4:30 PM)
Michael, The Giants have been mentioned on a lot of fronts, with trades (Dan Uggla) and free agents (LaRoche, Nick Johnson, etc.). Atkins just became available as a non-tender, and they just got rid of Ryan Garko, so I'm sure Brian Sabean is in the middle of a lot of stuff. Atkins' bat is definitely worth a flyer, but an infield with Pablo Sandoval and Atkins at the corners and Edgar Renteria at short isn't exactly Gold Gloves on parade. The pitching staff might stage a revolt.
Jerry, how come most people are saying the Phillies are clear cut losers in this? They locked up the best pitcher in baseball long-term, they re-worked their farm to meet their needs (and its not like Taylor or d'Arnault was going to play for them anyway... so they were essentially worthless anyway) and they still have enough room to acquire someone else in FA. Sounds to me like they played it smart and built for the now and the future. Why all the negativity?
Jerry Crasnick (4:33 PM)
Daniel, As I mentioned earlier, I don't see the Phillies as big losers. I don't think the Blue Jays did badly either, landing Drabek, Wallace and D'Arnaud. In hindsight, I think one team that came out poorly is Cleveland. I really wonder if they got much of value when they acquired Carlos Carrasco and three other minor leaguers for Cliff Lee in July.
Jerry, which pitcher just missed out on your best of the decade list?
Jerry Crasnick (4:33 PM)
Dan, Thanks for posing the first Pitcher of the Decade question. I would probably go with Roy Halladay. He had a heck of a run.
Tyler (San Jose,CA)
is there any chances the giants can get someone like an uggla or a beltre? jerry
Jerry Crasnick (4:35 PM)
Tyler, There's a chance, but the Marlins aren't going to give Uggla away. And my understanding is that Scott Boras wants a big pile of money for Adrian Beltre. We're looking at multiple years and at least $12 million a year. I can't see the Giants being too enthused about that.
Ben (Lincoln, NE)
Do you like the Juan Pierre acquisition by the White Sox? I thought it would be a good move last May/June when the Sox were struggling for leadoff help and I still like the move today... plus it seems surprisingly cheap...
Jerry Crasnick (4:36 PM)
Ben, I wouldn't have liked it if the White Sox had to pay the $18.5 million still owed Pierre. But the Dodgers are picking up more than half that total, which makes me like it a lot more from Kenny Williams' end.
Michael (Sacramento, CA )
Ponson worse than Hampton? I mean statistically maybe but Hampton torpedoed not one but two franchises.
Jerry Crasnick (4:37 PM)
Michael, Yeah, but Hampton bombed because he got hurt so often. Most of Sidney Ponson's problems were self-inflicted. I draw a big distinction there.
Jake (Honolulu, HI)
I highly doubt Jack Z is done this off season.. What else do you expect him to do for the Ms?
Jerry Crasnick (4:39 PM)
Jake, We'll see. The Mariners could make a late push to sweep Jason Bay off his feet, or go with the kid, Michael Saunders, in left field. They could move Chone Figgins to second base and try to re-sign Beltre. Or they could play Figgins at third and concentrate on the right side of the infield. Zduriencik has put himself in an advantageous position with two bold strokes early. And he still has some money left to spend, I believe.
Why do guys like Ponson and the like keep getting chance after chance along with big contracts? Is it collective delusion?
Jerry Crasnick (4:41 PM)
Greg, Sidney Ponson got one big contract with Baltimore, and then he kept hooking on with clubs because they thought they could sign him for cheap and catch lightning in a bottle. Carl Pavano got that $40 million deal from the Yankees and spent most of his time in NY on the DL. No matter how well he pitches from here, I don't see him cashing in like that again.
Michael (Sacramento, CA )
Lupica reports Mets as "Close" with Bay and that the deal may be 6 years, overpay much?
Jerry Crasnick (4:43 PM)
Michael, As of this morning, I don't think the Mets had definitively gone to five years. I don't think they're going to 6. That said, I wouldn't be surprised to see things move quickly if Bay feels comfortable about playing in New York. The Mets really want him.
A blog for the Baltimore Sun said that the Orioles should make a run for A-Gon. First, could the O's put together a package to swing the deal. Second, do you think the O's should try to land a big bat to compete in the AL East.
Jerry Crasnick (4:45 PM)
Grant, Adrian Gonzalez only works as the missing piece for a contending team with a deep farm system and a lot of prospects to trade. That's why Boston is a potential fit. The Orioles aren't even a .500 club right now. And to land Gonzalez, they'd have to give up so much young talent, the team around him would stink. It just doesn't make sense.
Jerry, as a dbacks fan im not sure about trading scherzer away even though we got back jackson and kennedy. Do you think ian kennedy has a legit chance to be special for us in the future?
Jerry Crasnick (4:47 PM)
Matt, I think Ian Kennedy is strictly a back-end-of-the rotation guy. Edwin Jackson has talent, but we need to see if he can put together a good season from end to end. The question on Scherzer is, is he the next Kevin Brown (as Scott Boras maintains) or a power reliever? I'm not smart enough to know the answer to that one.
Jerry, how serious do you think the Braves are about starting Jason Heyward in right field next year?
Jerry Crasnick (4:49 PM)
Satya, The kid is super-talented, but still awfully young. The Braves would like to find a veteran bridge to him and give him half a season in the minors. With his surplus of pitching, Frank Wren has a nice trade chip to make that happen.
Jerry who was the Reds biggest cy yuk of the decade?
Jerry Crasnick (4:51 PM)
Colt, Josh Fogg went 2-7 with a 7.58 in his year with the Reds. I imagine the good fans in Cinci don't remember him too fondly. It's probably unfair to jump on Paul Wilson; the guy had so many injuries. For what it's worth, Fogg and Wilson are both outstanding guys.
Biff (Norwood, MA)
Jerry, if you were Theo, would you give up BOTH Elsbury and Buchholtz for AGon?
Jerry Crasnick (4:54 PM)
Biff, I'd have to think pretty hard about it. That's a steep price, but can you imagine the damage Gonzalez would do in Fenway? Regardless, I think Jed Hoyer and the Padres would be looking more at high level prospects than established big leaguers in a deal with Boston. Ellsbury and Buchholz will be very expensive relatively soon. Makes no sense for the Padres.
chad billingsley. stud or dud?
Jerry Crasnick (4:56 PM)
Luis, He's 25 years old with 580 K's in 634 innings, and he made the All-Star team this year. If the Dodgers are ready to bail, I know an awful lot of teams that would be interested.
Andrew (Boca Raton)
Jerry who was the Mets biggest cy yuk of the decade because i can think of a few
Jerry Crasnick (4:57 PM)
Andrew, I keep wanting to say "Anthony Young," but I'm dating myself with that one.
Jerry Crasnick (4:57 PM)
Just time for one more question, folks.
Why is it that every time I heard a rumor regarding the Royals, it's for an overpriced aging player well passed his prime? (Kendall, Pudge, Bradley, Podsednik) Any hope for Royal fans?
Jerry Crasnick (5:00 PM)
Steve, Hey, you've got the Cy Young winner in Greinke, a top notch closer in Soria, and a budding star in Billy Butler. And a lot of people liked the Josh Fields-Chris Getz for Mark Teahen trade. I have faith that Dayton Moore, Mike Arbuckle and that group will straighten things out. But they have to do it through the draft, and unfortunately, that takes time. A breakthrough season by Alex Gordon will also help. We'll see on that one.
Jerry Crasnick (5:01 PM)
Thanks for the questions, everybody. If I don't catch you before Christmas and New Year's, have a safe and happy holiday season.