Tuesday, August 13, 2013

What Should Curtis Granderson Do and a word on Phil Hughes

I had a customer last night tell me that I was "Out of my mind" in talking about what Curtis Granderson should do during the upcoming offseason. I find that telling that to someone who you are having a conversation with is simply a form of dismissing their point of view without giving them a real chance to express their opinion. Its really not the way to have a discussion. I felt that history worked in my favor in what I felt Granderson should do.

As we know, Granderson has had an injury plagued campaign in his 2013 season. First a broken hand and then a broken pinky has caused him to miss a significant amount of time during his walk season. Where Granderson could have seen himself signing a multi-year deal at over $15 million a year, his limited play this year could have limited the bonanza he could have gained in a non-injured season. Consider that Granderson made $15 million this season and keeping in mind the free agency rules dictate that if a team wants to receive a compensation pick for losing a potential free agent, they must offer a qualifying offer to their free agent to be.

To clarify what I mean about a qualifying offer I'm going to post an explanation from the article As expected, new rules impact free-agent market by Matthew Leach dated February 12, 2013 from MLB.com:
Under the terms of the new Collective Bargaining Agreement, the structure has changed. The old Type A and Type B designations are gone. When a player reaches free agency, his former team may make him what is known as a qualifying offer, worth the average amount of the previous season's top 125 salaries -- $13.3 million this offseason.
If the player accepts the offer, again he is considered to be signed to a contract for the next season. If he declines, the team that signs him gives up a Draft pick, while the team losing the player gains one -- though not the same pick.
The signing team gives up a first-round selection, unless it possesses one of the first 10 selections. In that case, the team gives up its next selection after that. The team losing the player, meanwhile, gains a sandwich pick at the end of the first round. This applies as long as the player signs before the start of the next Draft.
I would believe that the amount for the qualifying offer for this year's free agents is higher than last season's $13.3 million dollars, probably even closer to the $15 million dollar mark that Granderson made this season. Given that, here is what I suggested that I was told I was "out of my mind" about.

I said that Curtis Granderson should take the qualifying offer the Yankees are sure to make. In doing so, he would be signed to a one year deal for 2014 near or around the $15 million mark and gives himself an opportunity to have the kind of offensive season that he would like to have going into a walk season than the one he is having now.  While the customer stated that he didn't believe that Granderson would be offered anything more than $10 million a year and that he would be stupid to not take a secure deal in the range of three years $30 million dollars. My point was (though I wasn't able to present it since I did have other customers to serve drinks to) you only needed to look at the example of Granderson's teammate Alfonso Soriano.

When Soriano's contract with the Rangers expired after the 2005 season the offers for a long term deal that Soriano wanted just weren't there for the taking. He signed a one year deal with the Washington Nationals and put up a slash line of .277/.351/.560 with 46 homers and 95 RBI which was an improvement from .268/.309/.512 with 36 homers and 104 RBI the season before. The next offseason, Soriano signed an eight year $161-million deal with the Chicago Cubs.

The only difference between Soriano and Granderson is that Granderson is only one year older than where Soriano was when he decided to sign with the Nationals. My point is why settle for a lesser long term deal when Granderson can redeem himself in one season and bang out a bigger deal afterwards since he will be 32 years old.

On a side note, we also spoke about Yankees starter Phil Hughes. The customer places the full blame on his season squarely on Hughes' shoulders. I felt somewhat differently. Hughes has not helped his cause with his performance this season but my point to him was that a pitcher doesn't do it all alone (I guess the sabermetricians are rubbing off on me after all). The offense is to somewhat to blame since the team has not backed him up with runs in games where he pitched.

Consider this, the Yankees have been shutout twice in starts by Hughes. They lost 6-0 to the Dodgers where Hughes gave up five runs in six innings and 2-0 to the Rangers where he gave up two runs in eight innings. They have also been held to one run four times (2-1 1 run allowed, 11-1 5 runs allowed, 5-1 2 runs allowed, 4-1 4 runs allowed) and two runs four times (12-2 7 runs allowed, 3-2 2 runs allowed, 5-2 3 runs allowed). That's 10 of 22 starts of two runs scored or less in his behalf. The team has only scored five or more runs in five starts made by Hughes which were all games won by the Yankees (3 wins for Hughes).

The run support has not been there whether he had a mediocre or a great game. Granted, Hughes didn't pitch like Mike Harvey or Clayton Kershaw in those starts but the offense didn't back him up either.

I believe that Phil Hughes would greatly benefit from a new start with another team like San Diego, Houston or even Pittsburgh maybe even becoming a number two pitcher on those staffs to which I was also told that I was wrong and out of my mind for thinking that. So goes the life of a bartender in NYC. Oh well.

Any suggestions? Agree? Disagree?

Sisco Kid

For Further Reading
- Click Here for Curtis Granderson's career statistics from Baseball Reference.com
- Click Here for Alfonso Soriano's career statistics from Baseball Reference.com
- Click Here for Phil Hughes's career statistics from Baseball Reference.com