Trevor BauerWell, now we know why Bauer was available. Let's revisit these trades:
One year of Choo (plus a draft choice) plus Donald plus some cash brought us Gregorius and Stubbs. This should be surprising enough for us. To mean, this supports Gregorious' middling hit tool. They don't know if he will hit so they will stick with Cozart. Bottom line to me: Gregorious is not a sure thing to be able to hit enough to start in the big leagues.
Now, we traded Gregorious for Bauer with spare parts thrown in both ways. If I don't like Gregorious that much, how could he bring Bauer? Well, Bauer, as it turns out, is quirky and a questionable teammate. Hey, but this is Clevleand and Albert Belle played here. Maybe we can hire Belle as a counselor for Bauer, helping him to navigate the intricacies of playing for the Indians and dealing with suburban Cleveland trick-or-treaters? I hope it turns out for the Indians like it turned out for them with Belle. Sometimes, as a small market team you have to gamble on a young, cheap guy, especially when it comes at the cost of Choo, Donald, Sipp and Anderson...and you net Stuffs, Albers and Shaw, too boot.
Now to trade Joe Smith in a deal with someone else to get good, young ML-ready players back.
Mark ReynoldsThis is a bad signing. Now, Mark Reynolds at $2.5 million on this team is a good signing. But $6 million? Russell Branyan was as good in his prime and Russell Branyan barely earned $6 million in his entire freakin' career!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
BTW, compare Branyan's and Reynolds career stats:
G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS OPS+ TB GDP HBP SH SF IBB
Eerily similar, no?
So, how can Reynolds be worth that much more than Branyan? Answer is ONLY because the Orioles were stupid enough to pay him $5.3 million and $7 million over the past two seasons, thus inflating his value beyond belief.
The Indians were suckers to continue this trend. In another life, this guy would have gotten Russell Bramyan type deals.
Shame on the Indians for getting caught up in the Orioles overpayments. Typical Indians' waste of money. Reynolds
Nick SwisherI like this guy, to be sure. But gosh folks, the guy is asking for the moon. If we sign this guy he instantly becomes the highest paid player on the roster....BY A FACTOR OF TWO! Yes, we will be paying him more this year than we are paying Asdrubal and Chris Perex, COMBINED.
Hey, I like this guy. I really do. But I don't think he is worth that much money for one year let alone 4 years. Look, we were like 30 games worse than the Tigers last year and the Tigers have already gotten better. this winter, signing Torii Hunter, maybe even negating the gains we could get by signing Swisher.
Plus Swisher costs us our 2nd round pick next year if we sign him. That hurts us in two ways:
1. With the lack of compensation free agents any more our second round pick this year is likely to be about the 43rd pick. Last year it would have been about the 60th pick. Small market teams that had almost 100 losses last year and who have one of the weakest farm systems in baseball shouldn't be losing draft picks, period.
2. Losing that draft pick gives us less flexibility in signing guys. Here is how it works, using last year as an example. If you have high picks you are granted inflated signing bonus caps for that pick. By that I mean that, if you sign a guy who will accept a lower bonus, like we did with Naquin, you have extra money to throw at later round picks. However, if you lose that draft pick you lose it's value in your budget. Thus, you now have LESS money to throw around if you want to go cheap on your early picks AND your second pick is now in the 3rd round and will be in the 80s, where the talent is thinning out IF you have to stay close to slot, as we will,
Basically, signing Swisher gives us an inflated payroll and the loss of a draft pick which will hurt us more deeply in the draft then just the loss of the player we would have picked.
For me, I say no to signing Swisher. It is probably a moot point, anyway. If Swisher sees what I see, why would he want to come here? Little chance of winning and the chance to become part of a rebuild. Who would want that if they can get close to the same money elsewhere. No one, as Shane Victorino can attest to.
The Mark Reynolds signing took us down a bad road. Let's not compound that by signing Swisher.
I don't know who to sign (Cody Ross now looks too pricy and may be a fool's bet) but I wouldn't sign Swisher.
Just my take. .