Archive for December, 2016

How the Mariners Could Find the Next Cy Young Winner

The Mariners traded for Chris Heston last week. Last year he was injured for most of the season, but Heston threw a no hitter in 2015, which was cool for him and the San Francisco Giants (a franchise that needed more things to go their way, obviously). Now he will compete for a spot in the rotation with Ariel Miranda and other pitchers who will fall somewhere between pedestrian and intriguing as spring training begins.

With that in mind, it comes as no surprise that the Mariners are looking for another major league arm. Ivan Nova is probably the best arm on the free agent market (yikes), and although I expressed a desire for the M’s to (gulp) sign him this offseason in the first JDFC episode, an interesting report came out yesterday via twitter linking the M’s to the Reds and the Rays:

Morosi is generally a reliable source when it comes to these things. Discussions could mean absolutely nothing, but it’s the offseason! So why not irresponsibly speculate a little bit?

The Rays have an assortment of interesting guys, but for various reasons they do not interest me as much. Maybe that’s another blog post. The guy that jumps to my mind immediately is the Reds’ Anthony DeSclafani, and not just because I enjoyed his work on a couple of my fantasy teams last year. He still has four years of team control and he has had some success at the big league level, so the Mariners would have to give up a player or prospect with good value, or several riskier prospects with high upside. Bearing in mind that the Mariners farm system remains thin (especially as Jerry Dipoto continues to wheel and deal this offseason), this potential trade is certainly unlikely. Not to mention the fact that the Reds will most likely lose more games than they win in 2017 as well, so DeSclafani could be a guy on the next winning Reds team, so they may not be interested in moving him unless they get an offer they absolutely cannot refuse (Kyle Lewis or Tyler O’Neill maybe).

After all, DeSclafani could potentially win a Cy Young in the near future. Check out his stats from his age 26 season compared with another pitcher with good command and slightly below average strikeout rates (all stats come from Baseball Prospectus. For an explanation of Deserved Run Average, read this):

Pitcher A: 28 GS, 172 IP, 47% GB, 4.92 ERA, 4.14 DRA, 101 DRA-, 1.36 WHIP, 1.9 WARP

DeSclafani: 20 GS, 123.3 IP, 44% GB, 3.28 ERA, 4.22 DRA, 101.3 DRA-, 1.22 WHIP, 1.6 WARP

Pitcher A is Rick Porcello’s age 26 season in 2015. You may have heard that he just won the Cy Young Award in 2016. Both guys lean on a Sinker and a Fourseam fastball, while DeSclafani throws more sliders and Porcello mixes in more Curveballs and a Changeup. Clearly we need to be penciling DeSclafani in for the 2017 AL Cy Young if he is traded to the Mariners!

Jokes aside, DeSclafani is a pitcher that the Mariners should be interested in. He probably overachieved last year, but their window to win is now, and a guy like DeSclafani could help them maximize this window while also helping them for a few years down the road. There is potential for possible growth here at a very low salary, and Felix and Kuma are not getting any younger. A guy like DeSclafani would not be cheap to acquire, but as long as its not Kyle Lewis or Tyler O’Neill, the M’s making a deal for DeSclafani would make a lot of sense for 2017 and 2018-2020.

Plus, what if he really did win the Cy Young?

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JDFC Episode 3: Do we like the Jean Segura trade?

Joseph and I discuss the Jean Segura-Taijuan Walker (plus some more interesting players) trade that happened on the eve of Thanksgiving, before saying goodbye to the M’s 2014 first round draft pick, Alex Jackson, who our beloved Jerry D also traded. Slow down Jerry!!

Joseph also references Jason Marquis and gets extra spicy in the second half of the episode? Was I able to pair with Joseph’s spiciness? The only way to find out is to listen and share with other interested friends, family, pets and ghosts of Christmas past.