Cabrera for Walters....was it worth it?
Asdrubal Cabrera was a guy who everyone knew would be traded. His expiring deal and the Indians depth at shortstop made it pretty clear he would end the season with another team.
Indians fans grew to dislike Asdrubal over the years. It got to the point where fans could not see the value in him despite what the numbers showed. Is Asdrubal a great player? No. He isn’t really a good player anymore.
Cabrera is just a good player for shortstop. There are so few shortstops that can post an OPS near .700 anymore. Half the league can’t find such a player. People say he had a down year and wasn’t worth much, yet he was still top 10 among all shortstops in OPS and home runs. Yet the dislike runs deep, and I am sure the comments section for this piece will reflect that.
The other thing which should have helped the Indians in a deal is the fact that there were a lot of teams looking for up the middle help and there were not a lot of players on the market. It was basic supply and demand.
The Indians received a single player back from the Nationals in Zach Walters, a utility bat. In 2013 he was the 10th rated prospect for the Nationals by Baseball America. He has played a few games in the majors but has been a guy who has bounced back and forth from the minors.
Walters is a mixed bag as player.
The positives on him are excellent pop for a middle infielder. He lead the entire International League in home runs last year with 29 and is on pace for 30 home runs again this year. He also has a very strong arm which has allowed him to play all over the infield. He is a switch-hitter who has played shortstop, third, and second in the minors. He has legit power. He has taken a step forward this year in almost every stat, but it is also his third year in Triple-A.
The downside is outside of the power I don’t see any average skills with the bat. Last year his strikeout to walk ratio was 6:1, one of the worst I have ever seen in a player. It has improved this year to 3:1 this year, but again, this is after 200 games in Triple-A. Another point is he is much stronger from the left side so in spite of being a switch-hitter he doesn’t help the team issues from the right side. Typically by now a player who teams consider a priority player would have had more than 47 at bats in the majors.
The Indians have had some success with lesser players in deals over the years. Yan Gomes was a virtual no one in prospect circles before the Indians targeted him. In Walters maybe the Indians feel his improvement this year is legit and just not the results of a player repeating the level. He brings some much needed power to the Indians organization and some versatility.
The upside to Walters is pretty much Mike Aviles but with much more pop and worse on-base skills. Again, to me that is his ceiling at this point, but then again I thought Gomes was a future backup as well. So hopefully I am wrong here too.
I just can’t be as happy as I was yesterday as Ramsey was a much better prospect. As a matter of fact, Ramsey is one of the top three prospects to be traded at this year’s deadline, at least to me.
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Korey, Danny, Trevor being our three pitchers that will battle very hard, these are our core. 4th and 5th pitcher should be Carlos C, House or bring up someone in system like we did last year with Danny and see how they pitch in the big leagues. If it is Carlos C., then bring Josh Tomlin to bull pen.
I hope that management realizes that we must get on a roll stay with a set line-up for the rest of the season. Let the hitters hit and the other bat in bottom of order or ride the pines. Please Terry listen. Cleveland fans desire it. If we lose with our best team on the field, we lose. No more letting everyone play to be nice. Go Tribe!!!!
I still believe the crush of ML ready middle infield prospects will arm us best for a trade for a pitcher, hopefully left handed and hopefully under our control for several years to come. When Houston briefly was being talked about as making Dallas Keuchel available, for example, I was very excited about the idea of trading for him.
Sounds to me like you're describing Russell Branyan without the massive power.
but if Price had to land in Detroit we were not going to overtake them this year and next years staff will consist of Porcello Price Verlander Sanchez which is still very good but Verlander is not the same Sanchez is showing he is human and there is a void left by Smyly Not sure if this is going to help that team get where they want to go I love Oaklnds staff at this time
Walters can play all four infield positions and the corners. He's 6'2 220, but he gained 25lbs since becoming pro so he has lost some range at SS, but could still man it in a pinch. He's also lost some foot speed, but gained some power with the added bulk.
I'd profile Walters to any of 3b, RF, LF, 2b, and 1b. The Tribe reportedly will have him working at 2b. He has the arm to play 3b, RF but defense is not his forte. I likened Walters to LH hitting Kelly Johnson, now of the Red Sox. Johnson can play 1b, 3b, 2b, RF and LF. Johnson is a career .250 hitter avg. about 15 hr 20+ dbls and 110+ K's.
I would project Zach Walters to be a UTL type playing 2b, 3b, 1b, RF, and LF over his career. He will play avg to fringe defense, but will bring his bat off the bench. I would project Walters to hit about .225-.250 15-20 hrs 20-25 dbls 100+ K's. Walters won't earn very many walks, but can impact a game with his power. He's got legit 30+ hr power. Honestly, he's a guy I think could really frustrate some fans (and mgmt), bc he seems likely to post a near 20% K rate. If he learns to pick and choose his swings a bit he could be a nice add to the bench long term.
After seeing the Cards trade Joe Kelly and Allen Craig to Boston for John Lackey and prospect Corey Littrell, I thought - would have liked either one for Masterson. I think Craig may have been too expensive with the risk involved for the Tribe. Kelly is a talented young SP that has been hampered by a hamstring injury.
The Tribe was reportedly in on Alex Rios. No word what TX wants in return, but I would have offered Murphy back and a cpl prospects.
Some of the Tribes biggest (potential) trade chips were injured...Naquin, Wendle, and Anderson. I'm curious if those names came up in trade talks or if their injuries hindered moving them.
I wouldn't be surprised to see the Tribe make a few moves during August. They might acq. a piece or two or just dump Murphy or Axford. They might net a fringe prospect in return or a young bullpen arm (like they need more). Then there's Scrabble, who might get some attn if he is placed on waivers. The Tribe has Hagadone and Crockett, but doesn't need to move Scrabble. However, he's likely due $2-$2.5M in arb. this offseason so there is a possibility the Tribe tries to move him for a young SP in return.
They try to make deals for many, many players. How serious those pursuits are is another question. As for the reasons I mentioned, I think those dictate why their pursuit of Milone was not an all out endeavor.
The Tribe has stockpiled a good amount of young middle infield talent and that will come in handy I suspect this off-season when looking for young SP talent.
I don't have a problem on the Cabrera return- Cabrera didn't have much value- I seen where Walters was the 9th-rated prospect, I think, heading into this year (via Baseball America, I think; was 10th going into 2013, I believe).
And, again, Francona's slow response to making changes is costing the Indians- how long is he going to keep sending Shaw out in the 8th inning? Shaw hasn't been good in that role for two months now, and you can't use the excuse he's been overused anymore. Why they don't shift Carrasco to that role if they're not going to put him back into the rotation is baffling to me. Personally, I would put Carrasco back in that rotation since McAllister appears as if he is going to be erratic all year, and House has been more erratic of late as well, never mind the fact Carrasco has a higher ceiling than both of them.
Still, if you're not going to do that, or not this year, at least, put Carrasco in the 8th inning- he's thrown far more strikes and been far more effective than Shaw the last two months. Just as Francona took too long to move Kipnis and Swisher out of the middle of that order (and Swisher's still there!), he's doing the same thing with Shaw. I would have moved him out of there not long after the All-Star Break at the latest. He's already cost the Indians a few wins the last few months, and every win is crucial, especially now, if the Indians have ANY chance of making the postseason in 2014.
Milone is arb eligible after this year and his adjusted ERA is league average; to boot, he's 27. Not worth it and doesn't fit the age/contract we are shooting for.
Zach has shown little this year. Very disappointing.
4.4 ERA outside of OAK Coliseum, 4.55 from 2011-13 too.
We already have TJ House and he won't hit arbitration the next 3 seasons like Milone does. And even if they got him, I'm sure that half the fans would have moaned that he's a soft tossing lefty, but the Indians simply did not have what the A's were looking at, a rental vet CF with speed.
I really think Walters becomes a Zobrist or nothing at all and keep in mind that Zobrist looked like nothing for lengths of time in his career. That's the kind of player I see in Walters without Zobrist's on base skills though, which is a big part of his game and value of course. Kelly Johnson is a good comp though, but he has more pop and a higher ceiling still.
Watching Chisenhall's two horrible ABs tonight vs a very hittable Young, I started thinking that the Indians might trade him in the offseason for SP help, probably thinking selling high on him and go with a Walters/Urshela platoon or competition at 3B. Part of me is intrigued by that thought, as I never fully bought into Chiz. He just has so many frustratingly horrible ABs time and again and while not a complete butcher, turned out to be a pretty disappointing defender at 3rd. If his numbers still look good at the end of the season, trading him could become a possibility, especially if the other guys step up.
Oh, and Tomlin is a much better option to start than McAllister right now. Mariners hit him hard all day long. Tomlin allows the usual HR per game, but misses bats in between, McAllister looked like a batting practice pitcher out there
As far as projections- I think Zach Walters could compare to Kelly Johnson. That's the type player I think he could become, that's definitely useful.
I would have offered ACab for Milone, but apparently, the A's weren't in on him, or something may have came together.
you would think by now he would have learned another pitch besides a straight fastball that isn't that fast???
Instead of paying Aviles $3.5 million, Walters will probably take this role, offering a decent backup plan for Chisenhall and perhaps platooning with Ramirez at short instead of having to rush Lindor. It will be interesting to see how the Indians use the $20 million next year that they were paying to Masty and Cabby this year. Presumably with Ramirez, Walters. and Lindor they have shortstop covered for 2015 and beyond.
Maybe the Indians will trade for or sign a legitimate top of the rotation starter to pair with Kluber.
I agree with Larry in that the Indians should have been all over Millone, a consistent left-handed starter the Indians have lacked. The twins got him for virtually nothing! as they picked up Fuld off waivers earlier this year. Sometimes it is what you didn't do instead of what you do that deserves the most criticism. I guess getting a projected fourth outfielder and utility infielder was more important than getting a major-league proven consistent left-handed starter.
Walters is not the same qlty of prospect that James Ramsey is, but he's a good prospect with a chance to be at least a useful UTL man with solid pop in his bat.
Interesting the Indians added two more bats to the system. It seems the Indians have a lot of depth in the IF and the OF. I suspect they'll utilize some of it for SP this offseason. They'll need do bring in another veteran arm to solidify the rotation. Klubers emergence has really been a God send, but he can't pitch every night.
Now keep the youth movement going into offseason. I want a young athletic team next year. Try to move if possible, swish Bourn Murphy and Raburn.
Lindor and one of our better young outfielders better b up next year.
And jury still out on kipnis and Lonnie.
with comp pick in return, I meant another team's tradeable comp pick, like the one the Astros got from the Marlins.
Speaking of, who is the GM in Houston? Horrible trade, even with the pick added to it. They traded away a 24yo controllable ML arm plus a ML ready MIF who has performed and a speedy OF performing in AAA for a couple of over-hyped prospects who have underwhelmed. Marlins easily won that trade in my opinion.
This trade would seem to be the goodbye to Mike Aviles, since he and Walters play the same range of positions. I wonder if he will be traded in August.
As for the Tigers, they got Price for Smyly and gave up Jackson. Honestly, this year at least, Price is not that much of an upgrade and the Tigers are going to miss their speedy, good hitting CF.
No payroll relief here Roger. Indians are paying the rest of Cabrera's salary
and i doubt they were burning up the phones trying to trade for him. This saves 4 million dollars of salary. so essentually the moving of masty and strubel saves the tribe 8 milion in payroll this year. as for him being handsome mike clone i kinda doubt many players are as versitile as aviles. all we can do is watch him and see. I never bought into the lindor wasnt gonna be brought up this year no way anyway. Whether cabrera was there or not lindor was gonna be in cleveland labor day.
why are the indians wasting money on analysis as to why fans do not show up? it is pretty obvious when your competition runs circles around you in every aspect.
ive come to the conclusion dolans will spend money but the idiots tell them on whom to spend that money have go to go. so over mark shaprio era.
A worse OBP than Aviles? Is that possible?
I'm not upset with the trade. By June of last year, we knew ACab's trade value was had dwindled from where it was at during the 2013 winter meetings. We probably could not have net more for him even if we dealt him during this last offseason.
The positive in this is at least Ramirez and/or Lindor will see some PT in Cleveland.
Why? Because ACab playing SS the next two months instead of Aviles/JRam would have meant about 0.2 more wins, and that's being very genorous, as I actually think it will be a wash even with some upside possible from JRam.
Would have preferred a comp pick but this is a solid get either way you look at it.
That said, Walters is a boom or bust guy. His power will translate and Antonetti has made a Gomes redux trade or he will whiff his way into AAAA, so what. 50 more games of ACab would not have made any difference anyway this season. I can't come up with a good argument how anyone could say it was not worth it. Hater's gonna hate I guess...