12:15 pm December 9, 2009, by David O'Brien
December 9th, 20094:52 pm
Chop Chop,you don’t scare me- I’ll say zero. What’s that? Time for my meds? OK
Jay212033 – Ohhhh. You’ve got it all figured out then.. With Eric Byrnes, Carl Crawford, and Coner Jackson. the Braves would have a great team in 2006!!
Poll answer – $0
They don’t “have” to eat any. They have several other options, including actually holding onto a 15 game winning pitcher.
When making a poll, it’s important to use words that mean what you intend. Even if the Braves trade him today and eat 15M, they didn’t “have” to do so. They “chose” to do so for a reason.
Macon Braves (RIP)
ugaaccountant–I sure hope you’re right. I don’t see Liberty Media ever letting the Braves spend like Ted Turner did. And I certainly don’t see them letting the Braves get up there with the Red Sox, Mets, etc as far as payroll goes (won’t even mention the Yanks since NO ONE is up there with them). But again, I hope I’m pleasantly surprised in the next couple of years and Liberty let’s the Braves have at it on payroll.
December 9th, 20094:53 pm
OJ How do you know what Wrens wants?
Wayne in Utah
It’s not about who we want, but who we don’t want.
Chief Nock A Homa
You know you love me DOB!
Seriously, you did make the connotation, correct???
And, then criticized the comments about potential trade scenarios involving him….
December 9th, 20094:54 pm
Soriano to the Rays for a backup player? That’s fantastic. This offseason is going swimmingly.
Question. Do the Braves pay players throughout the year, or only once the season begins? My point being, are the Braves responsible for Soriano’s salary immediatley? If the answer is no, if you dont get what you want, hang on to him until someone offers a better deal.
December 9th, 20094:55 pm
Rafael Soriano deal could get done today, sources say. Rays very interested but balking at $ and player(s)
NC Braves fan: I don’t know, really. I mean, they’ve only had a couple of meetings with agents of hitters, and have spent most of three days trying to trade pitchers. So that tells you where the priority is. But is it a necessity to clear up that pitcher’s part of the payroll or be sure they can, at least, before signing a significant-salary hitter? Probably not. On the other hand, if they decide they can’t trade Lowe and turn to Vazquez, well, then it’s a different pool of players opened up to them, because they can probably trade Vazquez for a good hitter if they want to.
But if they were to sign a Cameron or Nady or whoever now, they could also instead ask for a package of big-time prospects for Vazquez. So many ways this can still go….
December 9th, 20094:56 pm
Would the Rays be interested in a swap of Soriano for Pena or Burrell, or a swap of Soriano & Schafer (or another good prospect) for Crawford? The salaries, contract lengths, and needs seem to match up.
dmack: No, they don’t start paying players’ salaries until the spring. Not in offseason.
Desmond Jenning?????for Sory
Nova Scotia Steve - #40
Today is a very difficult day for us all…because nothing happened.
In particular…I had to take my girlfriend to the hospital last night at 2:30AM…she had some major explosions coming out of a variety of areas.
I don’t think i can ever look at her the same again.
I’ve had the cold sweats all day thinking about it. Just not cool….not cool at all
December 9th, 20094:57 pm
I would love to see the Braves acquire a bat that other teams are actually afraid of. It would be amazing to have a guy like a Pujols or Howard that teams actually have to worry about. Heck, I’d take an Adam Dunn. It seems that Andruw Jones used up the last to the Braves big homer mojo when he managed those 92 homers in a two season stretch.
Sure, McCann is a great batter, but teams are afraid of the homer, not a double.
New pole question:
Shut up, ugaaccountant. Who’s with me?
What are the Rays offering Willy Aybar?
Oh and Link to my last post
Lowe – 15 million
Jones – 13 million
Hudson – 9 Million
Kawakami – 6.6 million
Wagner – 6.75 million
Saito – 3.2 million
Vazquez – 11.5 million
The Braves have a little over 65 million dollars invested in 7 players who are all 34 years old or older(past their prime). 6 out of the 7 are pitchers.
December 9th, 20094:58 pm
N8–Does McLouth have the arm to play in RF? I look at him as fitting perfectly into LF with good defense over there and just a decent arm. But I guess if the other alternative in RF would be Diaz, his arm isn’t much better than McLouth’s.
Would be sweet if Heyward blows everyone away in Spring Training and basically forces the Braves to make him their RF from day one. Then McLouth slides to LF and Cameron (if signed of course) plays CF. You have one heck of an outfield defense with that alignment.
Don’t go changing your posts…
And, are you that self-absorbed, really, to comment that we’re so focused on you…
You ARE the host, correct?? And, the information gatherer, right?? Who else are we going to be focused on??
NC Braves Fan
When it comes to money, the folks in Tampa are “tight as ticks” as the saying goes. Which is kind of dumb since they play in the AL East and have a really good core of players.
Soriano could really help them out.
And people want Mike Cameron signed to push that number over 70 million.
If we can’t get good value for Soriano, just hold on to him until spring training when someone’s closer blows up. I’m looking at you, Cubs. And you, ’stros.
Dotel will never be a reliable closer. He’s a pure heart attack when the game is on the line.
We should’ve kept Jeff Francoeur.
I wouldn’t worry about Mike Cameron, Marlon Byrd, etc.. I might pursue Jermaine Dye as a short-term solution, but he’s about it.
You want pop? Re-sign Adam LaRoche. He’ll give us 28-34 homers more than likely. I don’t see why a team needing pop is so quick to show LaRoche the door—–especially seeing as how he’d probably TAKE the offer and NOT be a Mark Teixeira-like, highest bidder-pursuing guy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
We need to give Kelly Johnson 600 at-bats. Believe me; he’ll give us some numbers if we use him properly. If we don’t start him, let him at least be our fourth outfielder! Trust me; we don’t need to pursue a fourth outfielder!!!!!!!!!
If we’re going to trade Javier Vazquez, let’s pursue Evan Longoria or Carlos Pena.
Another option: Trade Derek Lowe and Jordan Schafer for B.J. Upton. Upton would provide speed, defense, hitting, and probably slugging again.
Lowe struggled last year, particularly down the stretch, but in many ways he’s our best pitcher. I think he has the best mound presence and seasoning of the bunch.
This team doesn’t have to trade Soriano to help these other guys out. Byrd and Dye, or Byrd and Gload, or Byrd and budding Kotchman-esque prospect can certainly fit into the payroll with Soriano once Lowe’s contract is moved. And I tell ya, all those possibilities make for some filthy strong line ups.
December 9th, 20095:00 pm
The Braves have a payroll that allows them to be very competitive. 90-100million puts you in the top 10-12 teams and allows you to do well.
1. New York Yankees $201,449,289 $7,748,050
2. New York Mets $135,773,988 $4,849,071
3. Chicago Cubs $135,050,000 $5,402,000
4. Boston Red Sox $122,696,000 $4,089,867
5. Detroit Tigers $115,085,145 $4,110,184
6. Los Angeles Angels $113,709,000 $4,061,036
7. Philadelphia Phillies $113,004,048 $4,185,335
8. Houston Astros $102,996,415 $3,814,682
9. Los Angeles Dodgers $100,458,101 $4,018,324
10. Seattle Mariners $98,904,167 $3,532,292
11. Atlanta Braves $96,726,167 $3,335,385
Rays have alot of young good players. Wren should be able to settle on one. Maybe add 2 or 3 more players for a bigger Fish!
jimmie Joe, players do reach an age where their talents start to diminish. That age isn’t usually 35, some are at their prime at 35…
“Rafael Soriano deal could get done today, sources say. Rays very interested but balking at $ and player(s)
This stuff just writes itself. Even if the deal is completed 10 minutes from now, he can say that he used the word “balking” to mean “negotiating”. This is actually really entertaining to watch everyone act like every deal needs to happen by tommorow at noon.
If we’re getting some sort of mid-level prospect for Soriano, I have to assume the team needs at least a day or two to actually look into the prospect we’d be getting. I know we have scouts, but I doubt they have instant values for every single average minor league player who could potentially be offered for him.
Well, looks like its going to be a week or so before we know if and where Lowe will be headed to. I am willing to bet that Lackey takes his time and lets the teams fight over his services and he will go to top dollar. Sabathia didnt sign until December 18th, which isnt that far off, but still not today. We wont get anything from Soriano. Which, I wonder if we can file a grievance for him screwing us out of draft picks and us getting nothing in return.
December 9th, 20095:01 pm
DOB, any BJ Upton or Carlos Pena speculation going around? What would the Rays be balking at you think?
they don’t start paying players’ salaries until the spring. Not in offseason.
Spring! Gees these guys just scrape by on top-ramen and water for five months?!
How’d Wickman keep packing on the pounds?
December 9th, 20095:02 pm
RM Sure, McCann is a great batter, but teams are afraid of the homer, not a double.
Don’t be knockin’ doubles, now…
(That doesn’t apply to BMac, though–he cann knock them all he wants! Buh-duh-bum…KSH!)
But seriously, forks…
If somebody asks for Vasquez with a reasonable deal, you scream at the top of your lungs “OMG, yes, we’ll take the trade!”
Vasquez’s stock is not going to get higher and there’s no guarantee he’ll repeat next seasons’ performance. When you have a Hanson and JJ, who are only going to get better, you can afford to give up a Vazquez instead of a Lowe.
Millsaps don’t start that CRAP again.
Hot stove on espn 2 now
Dob: on behalf of all bloggers and Braves fans I want to say Thanks for all the hard work you have done this week trying to keep us updated!! Keep up the good work!!
They just announced that three-team deal with Granderson, the only major deal at the meetings so far. that podium they have set up here has gone largely unused for the past two Winter Meetings at Vegas and here.
Wren addressed that while ago, the lack of activity at the meetings. He thinks most of the problem is the fact that the meetings fall between two dates, the arb-offer deadline for free agents and the non-tender deadline (Saturday) for arb-eligible players. And so many teams overemphasize the non-tender deadline, on the off chance that a bunch of attractive players might become available.
But he also added that he and his staff have been far busier at these meetings, even though they haven’t done any deals. Said they’ve had about 20 formal meetings with other clubs here (most of it having to do with pitchers Braves are trying to trade). And guess how many formal meetings he said they had with clubs last season in Vegas? One. Yes, one.
By formal, he’s talking about where a team’s officials come to your suite, or you go to theirs, for a formal meeting about a proposed trade. There are many other informal meetings that take place daily, anything from one GM cornering another GM in the lobby and talking about a possible deal, to seeing another GM at dinner and mentioning a possibility, etc.
December 9th, 20095:04 pm
By the Way DOB:
You make it sound as if you are not a “regular” blogger, the tone of our comment or question is not worth anything…
Not a very good host, are you…
I’d be glad to provide some tips to you if you ask nicely….
December 9th, 20095:05 pm
Well I guess you have it all figured out huh?!?!
TennesseePaul, again, good stuff at 4:58.
December 9th, 20095:06 pm
Your hard work and dedication is greatly appreciated! Hope you can get some much-needed R & R in the near future! You have to need some with the hectic pace you’ve kept up. Just sayin – lol!
“N8–Does McLouth have the arm to play in RF?” Macon Braves (RIP)
It was a typo on my part. I meant LF. I think Heyward is out RF from opening day this year. If not, Diaz can serve as the RF until Heyward is ready. Let’s not forget about Schafer either. Who knows?
December 9th, 20095:07 pm
Jimmy Joe: That chart is a little alarming. Then again, do a similar chart for the Yankees last year, show the salaries of their over-34 players. I’m guessing it’d be even longer, though I haven’t actually looked into it.
Canadian Braves Fan
December 9th, 20095:08 pm
Hey Chief Nock A homa do us all a favor and SHUT UP, just SHUT UP
Derek Lowe and Rafael Soriano for B.J. Upton. Nothing against Jordan Schafer, but throw him in as well if you have to.
Also, forget this fourth-outfielder pursuit. Please forget it! Please forget it! It’s not necessary!
Thomas at Purdue
December 9th, 20095:09 pm
So its safe to say that things will pick up after the Saturday tender deadline?
Did Wren say anything about the KJ situation?
December 9th, 20095:10 pm
What’s going on with Kelly Johnson?
That chart is a little alarming. Then again, do a similar chart for the Yankees last year, show the salaries of their over-34 players. I’m guessing it’d be even longer, though I haven’t actually looked into it.- DOB
I’d expect the Yankees to have that type of roster makeup, DOB. They are always involved in free agency and looking for player that could provide value right now. But the Braves have way too many 25 and under and 35 and older players. How about some guys in the prime years of 27-32? Who do we have in that range? McLouth? The departing Soriano? Alarming, indeed.
Chief, you here to talk baseball or talk about yourself? Save it.
December 9th, 20095:11 pm
This time last year this team was desperate for a starting pitcher that could, more than anything, eat up innings. I am not so eager to move a guy that can do just that, and a few games aside, Lowe gave this team a good chance to win most times out. Nice guy, great work ethic…It’s funny too, that his contract is not-so-big it now could be unloaded after all. Why does it seem this team is almost desperate now to move two such valuable pieces?
Four of six starters and the setup guy and closer are of advanced ages… What’s wrong with insurance?
Marc in FL
Soriano is landing us Carlos Pena, now this isn’t official or anything, but it’s going to happen, and I bet we’re including a prospect before it’s said and done to make it happen, probably Freeman or Schafer, and Wren might do something like add KJ and eat his salary or a portion just to make it happen.
It stands to reason that every team would have a large percentage of it’s payroll dedicated to older players, simply because younger players are usually still under team control and don’t have the ability to become a free agent yet. You could make a similar chart showing Escobar, Prado, Jurrjens, Hanson, and McCann, and the salaries would be remarkably low. That’s because 4 of those players have yet to reach arbitration, and the other signed a long-term contract that pays him less than he’d have likely gotten in arbitration, but gives him security should anything happen to shorten his career.
December 9th, 20095:12 pm
That chart isn’t quite as alarming to me, because you have to expect your younger players to make less money, what with them having not been to free agency and all…
December 9th, 20095:13 pm
I understand we do not want to keep Soriano, but why are we panicking ourselves into taking less than we should? If it is not done in the next day or two,do telephones,e-mails or texting stop working? Slow down a little bit and something good could happen.
But the Braves have way too many 25 and under and 35 and older players. How about some guys in the prime years of 27-32? Who do we have in that range? McLouth? The departing Soriano? Alarming, indeed.
That’s kind of the life of a mid to upper market team. And especially one that has tried to compete, and been mostly successful, for close to 20 years.
Marc in FL,
If you comment based on anything other than pure speculation? Not trying to be smarmy, I’m actually curious.
If there is one thing the Rays have is minor lllleague depth, But thats what you get for having the worst record for 10 years. But now that they have a good team they need to go for it and we could reap some great prospects for it.
Ben Zorbrist, BJ Upton, Carl Crawford, and Carlos Pena.
Upton arb eligible he may get 3-5 million. Zorbrist 3-5 million. Crawford 10 million. Pena 10.3 million.
Carlos Pena for Kelly Johnson, Rafael Soriano, and Jordan Schafer. Zorbrist can play 1B, Kelly would play 2B, Schafer can play RF(which they dont have…Gabe Gross??), and Rafael Soriano who would be the closer that they desperately need.
December 9th, 20095:14 pm
“We should’ve kept Jeff Francoeur.”
This is like missing a venereal disease.
If that is true, then what is the rush to deal Soriano? Wait for a deal that makes sense.
December 9th, 20095:15 pm
Canadian Braves Fan –
Do you have your visa to be here on this discussion board??? Eh??
Knox – didn’t realize I was talking about myself… Thought I was talking about DOB and his comments like everyone else here…
Braves have 70% of their payroll into those 7 players. All of which are 34 and older. I don’t care what you say, that’s alarming.
Tomas, you and I wish.
December 9th, 20095:16 pm
Lowe and Soriano for Upton? I don’t know who gets the worst end of that deal. The Braves would get a lead off type hitter with a horrid average and poor obp. However, they’d dump 20 something million of their 2010 salaries off on the Rays.
I’d imagine the Braves would take it, laugh at the Rays and go spend their freed up money on a real player or throw Upton in on another trade.
I asked Wren how many teams were still in on Soriano: “I won’t say how many. There’s several, I’ll put it that way.”….
He also said there have been “no discussions on money,” meaning the Braves paying part of Soriano’s salary has not been discussed….
Resident Cynic: I asked Wren if they’d made any progress on moving Johnson, with the Saturday non-tender deadline coming up and all. “We’ve had conversations on some of our guys,” he said. “Yeah, there’s some interest.”
“the tone of our comment or question is not worth anything…”
He’s not the only one who feels that way about you. Seriously, this is one of the strangest running bits I’ve ever seen on the internet and I was on the old prodigy boards in the mid-80s. Why spend so much time and effort telling a complete stranger who is 100% apathetic to you that you don’t like them? There is so much to do on the net and, even if you don’t have the creativity to enjoy any of that, there is still porn. Find a new hobby.
December 9th, 20095:17 pm
And Vazquez brings that age range down. Lowe(37), Chipper(38), Saito(40), Wagner(38) and Kawakami(35). Old.
18 Wheels of Love
December 9th, 20095:18 pm
I keep going back to DOB’s statement that the Soriano thing was and will continue to be a problem. Bowman downplayed it and so did Wren but I think the Soriano thing has taken Wren’s eye off the ball during the meetings. Probably not a huge deal a deal nonetheless that should have been avoided.
I’m probably missing something here, but if the Braves deal Soriano for anything at all and don’t have to pay any of his salary, how are they worse off than they would have been if they had never offered him arbitration?
It’s not looking good re: Soriano. Hope I’m wrong. I thought it was good news when I saw the tweets that Milwaulkee signed Hawkins, who the ‘Stros wanted pretty badly. But now Houston is close on Lindstrom.
Is the only player really the Rays at this point? What I feared before Soriano accepted arb (that there were too many relievers/closers available either via trade or as a FA) looks like it might be affecting his market, even after he accepted arb. Ouch.
The asking price is gonna have to fall even more. Where there were 3 teams interested this morning, it looks like it’s only the Rays now? What happened to LA, & the O’s? Anyway, either I’m tweeting too much looking at all the updates, or there are other options available that aren’t public yet.
“All of which are 34 and older. I don’t care what you say, that’s alarming.”
This isn’t the NFL. Veterans are the ones who know the tricks of the trade and help teams win. One of the best fantasy baseball strategies you could ever adopt is to draft all of the mid-30s guys who are underrated in later rounds rather than wasting picks on kids with “upside”. There is a reason why a very old Yankees team just won the World Series.
December 9th, 20095:19 pm
The Braves should be going after Bay and/or Holliday…
If they trade Lowe and Soriano, that frees up $23 million. Add to that the $3 million that Church had (DFA), the $4 million on KJ (who is likely to be traded), and $5 million that Gonzales left in FA. Also, $1 million from Norton and $7 million from LaRoche…
That’s a total of $43 million MINUS $10 million (Wagner/Saito signings) equals $33 MILLION OFF THE BOOKS for the Braves to find an OF, 1B, and bench player…
WHY could’nt the Braves make a RUN at JASON BAY or MATT HOLLIDAY with that kind of $$$$$$$$$$?
December 9th, 20095:20 pm
JimmyJoe: Just want to point a couple things out…
1) baseball like any other industry rewards experience with higher paychecks. Look around baseball and I would bet that most teams have the same “problem”. It is simply the way things go.
2) For a group that is past their prime that group seems to perform pretty well. Vazquezx had a career year last year and is a work horse. Lowe and Jones both had career years the year before. Everyone else on your list is under 10M
December 9th, 20095:21 pm
Just one other thing. I was talking to a manager of an AL team about the Braves trying to trade Lowe and the three remaining years on his contract, and this manager said, “He’s pretty good, isn’t he? They can move him.”
Then he asked me, “How much is he making? Nine million?”
And I said, “Uh, no,” and looked skyward.
“11 million?” he said. And I continued to look skyward.
“$15 million?” he asked. And I said, “Bingo.”
He paused, smiled and said, “They might not move him.”
He was joking. Sort of.
Point is, there are those who believe Braves will have to eat fairly significant amount of Lowe’s remaining salary if they hope to trade him.
December 9th, 20095:23 pm
Eat 6 million. And trade for a solid bat
I would take Pena for Soriano. There’s your cleanup hitter. The Rays would save money, especially if they renegotiate a 2-year deal with Soriano. Pena is a very good power hitter, and I think he’s a free agent either after next season or after 2011. Perfect timing for Freeman.
December 9th, 20095:24 pm
Who was this manager that doesnt read newspapers or the internet to know that Lowe was getting paid 15 million a year. That guy must live under a rock.
Picture of Boras this afternoon…they sure do want to hear from him it seems lol
Also JimmyJoe about 20M is set to come off the books next season a potential Lowe trade is not included
Gone Viral – Thanks! I appreciate the comments… Very insightful…
On to better things – UNC Brave – that’s what I’m not getting… We’ve got the cash, it seems, to be making a run at Bay or Holliday…
DOB – what’s the holdup with them making the run???
And I bet they are okay with that, so long as the return isn’t a couple of fringe prospects/org. guys.
December 9th, 20095:25 pm
Given the (in)accuracy of your reports last year, I’ll take all of this with a grain of salt.
I wouldnt trade Lowe if you have to eat salary, he is a good pitcher and proven inning guy and winner…trade Vasquel and get value if no one wants Lowe but I think someone will.
Man some people are crazy, Pena for Soriano,.
In our dreams
I wouldn’t eat 6 mil of Lowe’s salary – maybe 3
December 9th, 20095:26 pm
I’ve asked the same thing. I think they could afford Bay too.
ronald millsaps, here’s an idea: the rays should just toss all their players into a glass cage. frank wren sends soriano down the coin slot and gets to use the mechanical claw to grab any player (or players if he’s really skilled) he desires. if he can get a good grip on longoria, it’s a no-brainer. if longoria slips out of the claw’s grasp before he can be dropped down the chute, frank wren can toss vazquez down the coin slot and give it another go. that’s really the only fair way to make this trade happen.
I will j in my pants if we Carlos Pena! Add Cameron to the mix and look out for us baybeeee!!!!!!!!
December 9th, 2009
“All of which are 34 and older. I don’t care what you say, that’s alarming.”
That works until the fantasy playoffs in September when most of these guys are injured or resting every few days. Like Raul Ibanez. He was the single most valuable player in fantasy baseball, until he got hurt. Then he was basically worthless the rest of the year as he’d sit out every 3 or 4 games.
But I agree, old guys like Wagner are going to look really nice in April, I just hope his health holds on most of the year.
December 9th, 20095:27 pm
DOB, any idea of the type of prospects Braves are looking to get? Middle infield, third base, outfield? Or just best prospect available?
It’s amazing what a difference a year can make. Last off-season, we had a decimated pitching staff. Grabbing Vazquez was brilliant, snatching Lowe out from under the Mets was applauded. Now, some fans act like we were morons to get Lowe.
Last off-season, he was the savior of our pitching staff. This off-season, he’s a weight dragging us under. It’s not the end of the world if we can’t trade him. I’m not going to blame Wren for giving Lowe a big paycheck. Re-signing Tim Hudson is looking dumber as the days pass though.
If Wren can pull off a trade, no harm, no foul. If he doesn’t, he overloaded our pitching staff and spent money we needed.
Nick in PA
Please post a comment telling people to stop with the Crawford, Upton and Pena talk, it ain’t gonna happen!
4:22pm: The Astros have acquired Lindstrom, reports ESPN’s Peter Gammons. He’s flying to Houston for a physical.
December 9th, 20095:28 pm
Looks like Soriano is going to Rays, unless Red Sox or Yanks jump back in, lindstrom deal is offical.
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