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Doug Fister Traded to the Nationals

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But Fister isn't high priced. He certainly isn't high priced relative his production or what is available in free agency.

It makes little sense to trade a guy to save money so that you can then take that money and use it less efficiently in free agency.

That is why the move is vexing from the 'it frees up payroll' perspective.

He's not expensive relative to production, but if we are at 149 mil in payroll and are only allowed to spend 150 or 155, 7 million is quite a bit of money. It might be spent less efficiently in free agency, but efficiency isn't the goal, filling out the roster for the sake of competing for a WS is. We need a closer and a LF/3B at the very least and even though we traded a good player, the trade created zero holes compared to our roster 2 days ago.

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I am just now having my first coffee, I'll happily use that as an excuse :)

I have a rule at work to not do any email before coffee.

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I think this is probably a big factor as well. If its a straight payroll dump, you can afford to wait until the FA SP market has dried up.
I have to imagine DD could have moved Fister for a similar return after these hypothetical moves are made (but before the season starts), so I guess I am not understanding why Fister has to be moved first for the other moves to take place.

.

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I still think we are pretty much ripping on Dombrowski for the part of the transaction he didn't control, and ignoring what he was doing in the parts he could. I will argue again that if you start from the premise that the best chance to win is to get your 5 best pitchers into the rotation then the only question is what do you need to do team wise to accomplish that? You have to get a LH bullpen arm to replace Smyly there, you have to add system pitching depth since you had been holding a starter in reserve. So the trade accomplished exactly what it had to do to get Smyly in the rotation. All the rest is complaint about the total value Fister returned - that is really out of DDs control. All he can do once he decides on the piece he is moving is take the best package offered that fits the need. Again, it's just pretty silly to argue Dombrowski didn't make a serious attempt to maximize the return of the player he targeted to trade.

Argue that Fister was the wrong pitcher to target, argue that he shouldn't have traded pitching at all, but arguing that he got 'fleeced' because there was some much better deal he walked away from is just not very credible.

And this is the downside of the long term DD strategy to build pitching depth and then trade it. Like pregnancy - you can't have a starting pitcher "a little" in a starting rotation. If he's going to have any value you have to give him the spot in the rotation and once you decide you don't want him there, your options are more limited than with a position player you can platoon, etc.

Edited by Gehringer_2

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He's not expensive relative to production, but if we are at 149 mil in payroll and are only allowed to spend 150 or 155, 7 million is quite a bit of money. It might be spent less efficiently in free agency, but efficiency isn't the goal, filling out the roster for the sake of competing for a WS is. We need a closer and a LF/3B at the very least and even though we traded a good player, the trade created zero holes compared to our roster 2 days ago.

If the aim of the trade was to fill holes in the roster, why not acquire an MLB ready 3B or corner OF prospect in the deal to fill out the roster?

The meat of the deal was a prospect who is unlikely to help the team in 2014.

Edited by Mr. Bigglesworth

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But Fister isn't high priced. He certainly isn't high priced relative his production or what is available in free agency.

It makes little sense to trade a guy to save money so that you can then take that money and use it less efficiently in free agency.

That is why the move is vexing from the 'it frees up payroll' perspective.

Fister is on a sub prime contract, he's cheap now based on production but the Tigers are staring at a major rate increase on four over their core guys.

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I still think we are pretty much ripping on Dombrowski for the part of the transaction he didn't control, and ignoring what he was doing in the parts he could. I will argue again that if you start from the premise that the best chance to win is to get your 5 best pitchers into the rotation then the only question is what do you need to do team wise to accomplish that? You have to get a LH bullpen arm to replace Smyly there, you have to add system pitching depth since you had been holding a starter in reserve. So the trade accomplished exactly what it had to do to get Smyly in the rotation. All the rest is complaint about the total value Fister returned - that is really out of DDs control. All he can do once he decides on the piece he is moving is take the best package offered that fits the need. Again, it's just pretty silly to argue Dombrowski didn't make a serious attempt to maximize the return of the player he targeted to trade.

I contend you can accomplish much the same by acquiring a corner OF or 3B.

I don't think it was necessary to get a LH reliever or minor league starter or a utility player to justify moving Smyly to the rotation.

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I'm still content with this trade.

I think the team is about as good today as it was yesterday. I think smyly and fister are comparable, and krol should be able to fill smyly's role. Lombardozzi is comparable to any number of utility players, and might have a bit of upside given his age. He could become the bench player that people always wish we had. If not, he's still just a bench player.

Ray isn't an elite prospect but he's a good prospect, and they had to add to the system.

I understand if people feel that fister should have brought back a better package. I think that's hard to say.

I'm fairly confident that this wasn't the only deal available so I trust that the org valued this package more than the others.

I think Smyly will be OK in the rotation, but his ability to pitch a full season of innings is still unproven, so I won't say that he and Fister are equivalent. They also lose insurance if there is a major injury to another starter.

Smyly was one one of the best relievers in the league last year. I have no confidence that Krol will replace him or be anything more than a LOOGY. The Tigers always have young relievers that everyone says will be good and they rarely are.

Lombardozzi does not interest me at all and can't be considered a significant piece in a big trade like this.

Ryan is really the only interesting piece they got back as far as I'm concerned. They needed another good piece for me to have liked this trade.

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But Fister isn't high priced. He certainly isn't high priced relative his production or what is available in free agency.

It makes little sense to trade a guy to save money so that you can then take that money and use it less efficiently in free agency.

That is why the move is vexing from the 'it frees up payroll' perspective.

Agreed. It was not a move to free up payroll.

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Fister is on a sub prime contract, he's cheap now based on production but the Tigers are staring at a major rate increase on four over their core guys.

Right, but I am not understanding how they are filling holes in the roster without spending more.

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What people are missing is that Fister just isn't that good. Facts are facts: He's a marginal 500 pitcher for his whole career. I'll be stunned if he becomes a 20 game winner for the nationals. Because that would be the complete antithesis of his statistical norms, which players inevitably return to when they have a career year. And you could argue last year was his career year at 14-9. He has enough major league service time that we can safely call him what he is- a borderline 4th starter, maybe 3rd on a weak team. I'm just not that broken up over this. We essentially traded this generation's Milt Wilcox- one really good year and alot of average, 500 years. I like Milt alot and Fister was a very nice person too. But that doesn't mean someone is giving us a top 20 prospect for either of them.

Are your "statistical norms" based completely on win/loss record? If so, hahahahahaha.

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I guess I have to say I'm surprised that people are criticizing the fact that a major piece in the deal won't help in 2014.

They turned a 2014 surplus into a 2015+ asset. That's not a bad thing.

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If the aim was to fill holes in the roster, why not acquire a 3B or corner OF in the deal to fill out the roster?

The meat of the deal was a prospect who is unlikely to help the team in 2014.

I doubt they turned down a starting 3B, but we'll never know. I don't know how else to put it really. They have 7 million less in committed payroll and one less hole(though a cheap one). If the money freed up between this trade and the Fielder trade is the reason we sign Granderson or Nathan, that's part of the trade. Assuming a hard budget at least. You have made your roster cheaper,deeper and more flexible. I think that's inarguable.

-that doen't make it a good trade necessarily

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They turned a 2014 surplus into a 2015+ asset.

Maybe. Prospects aren't sure things. We turned a known asset into a big old maybe asset.

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Right, but I am not understanding how they are filling holes in the roster without spending more.

But maybe they are going to spend more to fill roster holes and this move was not about roster holes but getting Smyly into the rotation. Sometimes the cigar is just a cigar.

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I'm still content with this trade.

I think the team is about as good today as it was yesterday. I think smyly and fister are comparable, and krol should be able to fill smyly's role. Lombardozzi is comparable to any number of utility players, and might have a bit of upside given his age. He could become the bench player that people always wish we had. If not, he's still just a bench player.

Ray isn't an elite prospect but he's a good prospect, and they had to add to the system.

I understand if people feel that fister should have brought back a better package. I think that's hard to say.

I'm fairly confident that this wasn't the only deal available so I trust that the org valued this package more than the others.

I think this is where I am at. I would add in that I would rather have Perez playing every day in Toledo rather than sitting the bench in Detroit.

Also glad to see the club getting some youth back in return. People have commented about the current window, and how dealing Fister might affect that. The playoff window is still there, and maybe it is a little shorter this season (at this point, still early in the offseason) but this is a move to help widen it.

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I guess I have to say I'm surprised that people are criticizing the fact that a major piece in the deal won't help in 2014.

They turned a 2014 surplus into a 2015+ asset. That's not a bad thing.

It's a bit encouraging to me that the regime is still thinking longer term. There's a twinge of uncertainty in my view between Ilitch's health and DD's commish courtship.

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I doubt they turned down a starting 3B, but we'll never know. I don't know how else to put it really. They have 7 million less in committed payroll and one less hole(though a cheap one). If the money freed up between this trade and the Fielder trade is the reason we sign Granderson or Nathan, that's part of the trade. Assuming a hard budget at least. You have made your roster cheaper,deeper and more flexible. I think that's inarguable.

-that doen't make it a good trade necessarily

I doubt they turned it down a 3B as well.

Just so we are clear, this is my position:

If I were the GM, I would have been targeting a MLB ready or near MLB ready 3B or corner OF prospect in trade for Fister.

If I couldn't get it, then I don't trade Fister.

If I later had to cut payroll because FA signings took me over my budget, I trade Fister at that time for the best return I could get.

Edited by Mr. Bigglesworth

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But maybe they are going to spend more to fill roster holes and this move was not about roster holes but getting Smyly into the rotation. Sometimes the cigar is just a cigar.

I agree in that I think this move signals means the Tigers decided to spend to fill their holes and payroll will go up.

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One more thing regarding whether or not this return for fister was good enough.

Fister is basically under contract for 2/18. That's a good deal, but it's also a short deal. It's great for a team that doesn't want to hand out a 3 or 4 or 5 year deal for a starter.

At the same time, he's going to need to be extended in a couple years for what is likely a large amount of money, or he's going to walk.

Any team looking at fister could also address their need for a SP through free agency. There are a good number of free agent starters that are comparable to fister. Maybe not quite as good, but comparable.

Nolasco signed for 4/49.

Obviously, fister is on a better contract, but how much better, really?

The difference between the two is covered by the value of the players that Washington gave up.

No team is going to give up an elite prospect or two to upgrade from nolasco at 4/49 to fister at 2/18.

The return for fister was more than fair, and was exactly the type of trade the tigers needed to make if they want to remain competitive in the coming years.

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I doubt they turned it down a 3B as well.

Just so we I clear, this is my position:

If I were the GM, I would have been targeting a MLB ready or near MLB ready 3B or corner OF prospect in trade for Fister.

If I couldn't get it, then I don't trade Fister.

If I later had to cut payroll because FA signings took me over my budget, I trade Fister at that time for the best return I could get.

I agree with this. It feels like Dombrowski jumped the the gun and got little value for Fister. I feel it was simply a mistake by Dave.

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I'm still content with this trade.

I think the team is about as good today as it was yesterday. I think smyly and fister are comparable, and krol should be able to fill smyly's role. Lombardozzi is comparable to any number of utility players, and might have a bit of upside given his age. He could become the bench player that people always wish we had. If not, he's still just a bench player.

Ray isn't an elite prospect but he's a good prospect, and they had to add to the system.

I understand if people feel that fister should have brought back a better package. I think that's hard to say.

I'm fairly confident that this wasn't the only deal available so I trust that the org valued this package more than the others.

I'm not worried about the package per see because I have no idea what was available, but I don't see the team being as good today as it was yesterday. If Smyly is as good as Fister why wasn't he in the rotation last year? It's still an open question as to whether Smyly is going to be better in the rotation than Porcello. And if Smyly is that good a pitcher then for Krol to replace him comparably Krol has to be a really good pitcher and I'm just not seeing it.

It looks to me like we lost a win or two overall plus opened up a small hole in an already questionable bullpen (unless you think Kroll is going to be a primary reliever for the 7th or 8th).

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I agree in that I think this move signals means the Tigers decided to spend to fill their holes and payroll will go up.

That is the optimistic way to look at this deal. If they think they can fill their holes with cash then this deal gets Smyly into the rotation while netting a prospect in exchange for a small dip in overall team strength that they can throw money at to fix relatively easily.

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