Monday, May 16, 2005

The trade-for-Mike-Sweeney idea has hit a snag - he's signed through 2007, and his contract increases if he's traded. I still think he'd be a perfect fit, but it looks a lot less likely.

However, as is evidenced by the Pirates's recent claiming of Mike Restovich off waivers, there is no shortage of right-handed hitters who can play arguably the easiest defensive position there is (1B) and put up some solid offensive numbers. There's no need to break the bank looking for one. I guess the silver lining to Bagwell's injury is Morgan Ensberg can finally rest easy knowing that he should start pretty much every game at 3B this year, barring injury.

GM Tim Purpura has made, in my opinion, some solid 'cheap' moves in the last month or so, nabbing Tom Martin, Brooks Kieschnick, and Humberto Quintero in the Tim Redding trade. Here's hoping he can make at least one more, and find a cheap RH bat to platoon with Lamb and Self at 1B.


Anonymous said...

either trade biggio or move him to first and get chris burke in the line up. he is our best prospect. what is hard about this. the astros sure do not need sweeny, they already have a broken down first baseman. you do not win championships by being loyal to old players.

Scott Barzilla said...

Mike Sweeney is a nice player, but he is not the answer. We need to face the fact that we are not going to win this year. Therefore, we need to spend the rest of the season finding out which players we want to keep and which ones we want to replace.

When I think of free agency (or trades involving young players for expensive veterans) I have two golden rules

1) It must be at a position you do not have.

The Jeff Kent acquisition broke this rule. He's a nice player, but we might have been in a different position had they kept Biggio at second and brought in either a catcher or shortstop for the same money as Kent.

2) It must be rare in the marketplace.

First basemen that have OPSs between 800 and 900 are not rare in the market. Besides, either Berkman can move there or we can put Self there (Self needs to be where Berkman is not). If a GM can't find any corner outfielder or infielder that can produce a 750 OPS or better for a decent rate he needs to resign.

On the other hand, we have a definite problem in the middle of the diamond. Taveras and Burke look to be good future pieces at their positions, but this team is really hurting for a catcher and shortstop. Instead of spending money on Sweeney, go out and find yourself a top-notch catcher and shortstop in free agency this off-season or trade for one. Those positions are positions we do not have here or in the minors (to speak of) and they are rarer in the market.