Tagged: Randy Johnson

Giants Sign Randy Johnson, Could Pursue Manny Ramirez

GiantsI know that this is old news, but I wanted tLo write about it anyway. The Giants signed Randy Johnson the day after Christmas for 1 year, 8 million. There are incentives that could bring the final total of the deal to 13 million. This is a fantastic signing by the Giants.

The Big Unit came at a very cheap price. Only 8 million per year is a huge steal in my opinion, and I think that a number of teams should’ve matched this offer. I thought that the Dodgers were the best fit for Johnson because Randy Johnsonthey had a lot of money to spend and could get him on a 1 year deal. LA has 34 million left to spend with only 2 holes – the rotation and the outfield. Manny Ramirez or Adam Dunn or whomever could come in for at the most 22 million per year. That would leave at least 12 million to spend. That is the offer I would’ve made if I was Ned Colletti, the GM of the Dodgers. He got beat by Brian Sebean on this one, and it could cost them big time.

Randy enters an already good rotation to solidify it. The Giants can now boast a rotation of Tim Lincecum – Matt Cain – Randy Johnson – Jonathan Sanchez – Barry Zito. In my opinion, that is the best starting rotation in the NL West. This team could be in some major competition for the division. I think they have already pasted up the Diamond Backs in terms of talent. San Francisco has much more depth in the rotation, and one could make a case that they have a better offense as well. Right now, they are still a step behind the Dodgers. If because of nothing else, the Dodgers still have the much better offense and bullpen. There is only one thing that could make the Giants favorites to win the NL West…Manny Ramirez

Manny Ramirez. They are said to be aggressively pursuing him, but I don’t know how true that is. There has been zero competition with the Dodgers for his services. Because of this, he should come pretty cheap. Of course, Manny will still probably get at least 2 years, 40 million. I don’t know if the Giants could fit that into their payroll. They have about 88 million committed for ’09. Their highest payroll since 2000 has been 90 million. I don’t know if they will be able to go any higher, but if they have permission to go all the way up to 100 million, a signing could occur.

First, they would have to trade Randy Winn, both to clear salary and to open up a spot for Manny to play. One suitor that I think makes a lot of sense is the White Sox. They need a center fielder, and Winn would be the best available via trade or free agency. The ChiSox would probably be willing to take on the entire 8.25 million he has coming. So, if a trade like this does go through to dump Winn’s contract, the Giants would have 80 million committed. Give Manny 20 million in his first year and call it an offseason. They can then head into the season with a lineup of Fred Lewis – Edgar Renteria – Aaron Rowand – Manny Ramirez – Bengie Molina – Pablo Sandoval – Greg Bowker – Kevin Frandsen / Emmanuel Burris. Very good. If they make this move, they are the favorites to win the NL West in my opinion.

All of it is possible if they get approval to raise payroll all the way up to 100 million. If not,  they’ll be in a dog fight for second place with the D’Backs.  

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Andy Pettitte Possible for the Dodgers

Andy Pettitte has been in touch with his former manager, Joe Torre. The Dodgers have some interest in adding Pettitte. He would be a pretty solid addition to the back of their rotation, but I would rather have Randy Johnson. If you look at the stats, Randy was better than Andy in every category except for innings pitched. And that was because The Big Unit was hurt at the start the season. I wouldn’t mind adding both of them if the price was fair. A rotation of Chad Billingsley-Hiroki Kuroda-Randy Johnson-Andy Pettitte-Clayton Kershaw would be solid. The only only hang-up on this idea would be the money. If Unit gets 14 million, and Pettitte gets 12 million, the Dodgers would have only 24 million left to lock up Manny Ramirez with. That might take up all of the money, leaving the Dodgers with next to nothing to fill the third base and shortstop holes with. So I find both player signing in LA not very likely. Despite the possibility of Pettitte reuniting with his former manager I think he will resign with the Yankees. The Dodgers will sign Randy Johnson as their veteran arm, and will also sign a pitcher returning from injury to compete with James McDonald for the final spot.

Analizing the 2nd Tier of Free Agent Starters

CC Sabathia, Derek Lowe, AJ Burnett, Ben Sheets, and Ryan Dempster have all been generating a lot of buzz this winter, but I also want to analize the second tier of starters; the players beyond the top 5. Oliver Perez, Jon Garland, Randy Johnson, Greg Maddux, Andy Pettitte, Braden Looper, Jamie Moyer, Randy Wolf, Odalis Perez, Paul Byrd, Freddy Garcia, and Tom Glavine represent this tier. Some of these players will take one year deals with their former team, while others will look to sign 3 or 4 year deals. Of the above mentioned names, it seems that Maddux will retire. Glavine, Moyer, Pettitte, and Odalis Perez seem destined to resign with their former teams. That would leave Oliver Perez, Garland, Johnson, Looper, Wolf, Garcia and Byrd as the players who could truly be available. Johnson seems like the best bargain of the bunch; he had the best stats and will take a one year deal. He could generate the same buzz that Curt Schilling did last year. Garcia, Looper, and Byrd are solid back-of-the-rotation options that could come in on 1 year deals. The latter two have a lot of experience, and could be attractive to bad teams looking for veteran guidance. The Pirates seem like a team that could fit in well. Garcia has a lot of upside and should be a hot commodity once bigger names fall. The Giants, Brewers, Astros, Tigers, Indians, and Braves could find themselves a match in this cheaper group. The only players that will atempt to get a multi-year deal out of this group are Oliver Perez, Garland, and Wolf. Scott Boras will try to get 4 years for Perez because he is a young player with great stuff that racked up 180 strike-outs last year. All of this despite his 4.22 ERA. Garland will be a much tougher sell. He was bad last year with an ERA of 4.90 and very few Ks. However, he is about as solid as it gets when it comes to eating innings. He’s gone at least 190 innings per year for 8 straight years. If you want a young innings eater that won’t get hurt and could give you league average production, you’ll look at Garland. Wolf was very solid last year. He had an ERA of 4.30 to go along with 162 strike-outs in 190 innings, his most since 2003. He is quite a gamble because of his health issues, however. I could see him netting a 2 year deal under the right circumstances, though. So teams may find many bargains in the second tier because only 3 players will most likely look for multi year deals.

Randy Johnson Not Likely for D’Backs

The D’Backs held a meeting with Randy Johnson and his agent last night. They would’ve either signed him last night or he would not return. Things didn’t go well, and The Big Untit won’t be back. He was willing to strike a deal for 8 million (a 50% pay cut), but the D’Backs were looking for the deal to be in the 3-5 million range. They were being awfully cheap because they barely have anything to spend. Only 10 million. Well, what is done is done I guess. “Where will he go?” is the question people will be asking now. I honestly have no idea where. Wanting to stay near Arizona and compete, I think he takes a deal with the Angels or Dodgers. Neither are particualy great fits, but both could work. The Dodgers are looking for a starter, and might feel that Randy Johnson makes more sense on a one year deal than signing a guy like Oliver Perez to a big multiyear contract. The Angels could decide to play it safe and not risk trusting Kelim Escobar. Even if he comes back, Big Unit would still be a solid first half option and the Halos would then have the option of trading a starter at the deadline. They overall don’t seem like a great fit, however. I don’t know where Big Unit will go, I just can’t wait to see him get his 500th win somewhere. 

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Offseason Plan: Arizona Diamond Backs

While the D’Backs look like they are going to make it to the postseason this year, you don’t know about next year. The Dodgers look like they’ll be big spenders in the offseason, but they also have many holes ot fill. The D’Backs, however, don’t. If you look at our Offseason Needs post, you’ll find out they only have three: second base, reliever, and starter. If they retain Randy Johnson, which I think the will, that sloidifies the rotation. The need to add a reliever or resign either Jaun Cruz or Brandon Lyon, most likely Cruz. They will have a hole at second base with Orlando Hudson reaching free agency. It is unlikely they will be able to afford him, but they need to sign a different in free agency. Mark Grudzielanek or Ray Durham make a lot of sense here. This team obviously won’t resign Adam Dunn, because he is looking for 100 million. They don’t need him, though, because they have Eric Byrnes returning from injury. The team has a solid trade chip in Chad Tracy. They don’t have a spot for him when Byrnes gets back. They could move him for a bullpen piece. I know this doesn’t help them for next year, but the D’Backs are going to have a draft bonanza next year when Dunn, Hudson, Lyon, and possibly Cruz all walk. This is a team that can stay pretty much the same as it was last year. It more depends on what kind of signings the Dodgers make witch will depend on who wins this division.

Starting Pitching Free Agent Market

The hitters market isn’t that good, but now we get to the best part, the pitching. I labled the starters with what kind of starter I think they are. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, C5, (Which means competing for the 5th spot) and DL. (Which means they are returning from the DL, or an injury)

 

Free Agents

  • 1. CC Sabathia
  • 1. Ben Sheets
  • 1. John Lackey (9 million club option with a 0.5 million buyout)
  • 2. Ryan Dempster
  • 2. Mike Mussina
  • 2. Derek Lowe
  • 2. AJ Burnett (Can opt out)
  • 3. Oliver Perez
  • 3. Jon Garland
  • 3. Kyle Lohse
  • 3. Tim Wakefield (4 million club option)
  • 3. Greg Maddux
  • 3. Andy Pettitte
  • 3. Randy Johnson
  • 3. Brad Penny (8.75 million club option with a 2 million buy out)
  • 4. Jamie Moyer
  • 4. Braden Looper
  • 4. Odalis Perez
  • 4. Kenny Rogers
  • 4. Tom Glavine
  • 4. Randy Wolf
  • 5. Paul Byrd
  • 5. Jon Lieber
  • 5. Livan Hernandez
  • C5. Mark Hendrickson
  • C5. Brett Tomko
  • C5. Josh Fogg
  • C5. Kip Wells
  • C5. Tony Armas Jr.
  • DL. John Smoltz (12 million club option)
  • DL. Roger Clemens
  • DL. Freddy Garcia
  • DL. Curt Schilling
  • DL. Pedro Martinez
  • DL. Jason Jennings
  • DL. Mark Mulder (11 million club option with a 1.5 million buyout)
  • DL. Orlando Hernandez
  • DL. Mark Prior
  • DL. Esteban Loaiza
  • DL. Carl Pavano (13 million club option with a 1.95 million buyout)
  • DL. Mike Hampton
  • DL. Matt Clement
  • DL. Kris Benson

Teams in Need

  • Mets
  • Yankees
  • Dodgers (get 2)
  • Braves
  • Blue Jays
  • Astros (get 2)
  • Rangers
  • Brewers
  • Phillies
  • Red Sox (Only for a #1)
  • Tigers
  • Indians
  • Nationals
  • Padres
  • Rockies
  • D’Backs
  • Royals
  • Cardinals
  • Orioles
  • Pirates