ERVIN SANTANA MARKET BEGINNING TO DEVELOP
We are finally starting to get an indication of the market that is developing around Ervin Santana. Ken Rosenthal writes that the Toronto Blue Jays are considered the favorites to sign either Santana or Ubaldo Jimenez, and it would not be a surprise if the Blue Jays acquired two starting pitchers.
The Jays are a leading candidate to sign either Santana or Jimenez; they have two protected first-round picks, Nos. 9 and 11, and would sacrifice only a second-rounder and the accompanying pool money for one of those free-agent right-handers.
The second starter seems likely to come via a trade, according to Rosenthal.
The team also remains involved in trade discussions for Samardzija and other starting pitchers.
For those who would really like to see the Royals re-sign Santana, here’s the first major test. Toronto is a team that has the money to offer what Santana is looking for while not having to give up a first round pick because their’s is protected. Should Toronto sign Jimenez over Santana, then that would be considered a huge blow to Santana’s potential contract value. Of course, there are teams like the Yankees or Seattle who may not care about their first round pick and choose to sign a player like Santana anyway.
JEFF SAMARDZIJA TRADE VALUE
There is an interesting paragraph in Rosenthal’s piece discussing Samardzija and a potential trade.
[I]f the Cubs cannot sign Samardzija to an extension, the Jays probably could not, either. Indeed, the Jays need not rush into anything. Samardzija still might be available in spring training or July. And other possibilities could arise; some team is bound to disappoint and trade off veterans, the way the White Sox did with Jake Peavy last season.
Keep an eye on Samardzija as the season progresses. It appears the Cubs are not going to get an extension done with Samardzija, and the longer they wait, the less Samardzija is worth in a trade. The Royals may be in the market for him come July if they cannot find the second starter they need/want in the next six weeks.
MORALES MARKET VALUE SLIPPING
It also might be that, as with the closer market, the market for all-bat players and 30-something sluggers is correcting itself to a degree. A team need look no further than Ryan Howard‘s five-year, $125MM deal with the Phillies to see why signing an aging slugger of limited athleticism might turn out to be a problem. Or Travis Hafner‘s four-year, $57MM deal with the Indians, or Albert Pujols‘ ten-year, $240MM contract with Angels. Sometimes, these sorts of players remain productive through their mid-30s — who would have thoughtDavid Ortiz would age so well? But often they don’t, and that’s even before considering Cruz and Morales are nowhere near as well-rounded offensively as Pujols or Ortiz.
It may have slipped enough that the Royals may consider signing him, according to one rumor.
A sleeper team interested in Morales, as confirmed by a source, are the Royals – love that lineup with him in the middle of it !!
— Jim Duquette (@Jim_Duquette) January 2, 2014
Should the Royals sign Morales, which seems like a long shot at this point, the Royals would most certainly have to trade Billy Butler. What the market would be in a trade for Butler is unknown, but teams like Baltimore, Pittsburgh, and Texas may be interested.
Tags: Kansas City Royals