2012 Reds

Reds, Cubs talking trade

Travis Wood for Sean Marshall? Ummm…

I love Sean Marshall. He’s great. I don’t think I like this trade proposal, however, for any number of reasons. Just doesn’t make sense to me.

What do you think?

107 thoughts on “Reds, Cubs talking trade

  1. FWIW, Marshall was tied for third (with the Yanks’ Robertson) in WAR for relievers, right behind Kimbrel and Papelbon, and right above Rivera. He was tied for fifth the season before, and the only other guy in the top 10 each year was Axford.

    That = pretty good.

  2. Fayman: Marshall would not be slated to close.

    Reading some outsiders takes – I think we are overvaluing Wood a little. Still not loving the trade.

  3. Yeah, I think its possible we’re over projecting Wood’s talents…maybe he’s more of a #4/5 instead of a #3/4. We’re not overvaluing his contract though.

  4. @CP: Right, a ceiling of a #3 doesn’t mean he IS a #3.

    Marshall is great, but a cheap #4/5 is valuable. I think of the Cards signing Lohse when they did, and that strikes me at the time as them signing a #4 on the open market and they paid around 10M per season.

    As Aaron said, I’m not interested at all if he’s not going to close.

  5. @Dave Lowenthal: When he was the centerpiece of the Reds team the trade wasn’t bad. Pitching beats hitting and Volquez gave them that. The same reason they traded Hamilton is the same reason they traded Alonso – the possibility of having a true 1-2 punch at the top of the rotation was too much to resist. Volquez-Harang or Cueto-Latos, it’s the same philosophy. If Latos’ elbow explodes and he doesn’t return to form immediately, I’m sure there will be some saying it was an awful trade.

  6. I still see plenty of positive value in Marshall even if he isn’t signed to close.

    1. Utterly locks down the 8th inning.
    2. Back-up closer if we need one during the season.
    3. Locks Chapman into starter role.

    I’d like it even more if he closed – not because closing is necessarily more valuable than a great 8th inning pitcher – because it would prevent us from wasting the money signing an ‘established’ closer like Cordero or (gulp) Brad Lidge.

    Marshall may be the best value to receive for Travis Wood, depending on how others view him.

    Travis Wood isn’t going to be the #4 or #5 on this staff.

    Maybe Walt has another move in store for the closer besides Cordero/Lidge/David Weathers. Someone else’s right-handed set up guy we could use as a closer.

  7. @Dave Lowenthal: It’s simplistic to believe that batting order is the reason why teams win and lose. Most of the criticisms on Baker are simplistic. Overextending relievers is much more of a concern if you want to get to actual issues with Dusty Baker.

  8. I agree that often a cheap #4 or #5 is a solid asset. But I don’t see the Reds as going that route right now. Their rotation is:

    1. Cueto
    2. Latos (yay)
    3. Chapman/Bailey
    4. Leake
    5. Arroyo

    We can complain all we want about Arroyo, but he’s going to be there, one way or another.

    Where do you see the need for Travis Wood here?

  9. I think a stronger argument against the trade would be based on making the case for Travis Wood as a LH relief pitcher.

    Compared to Marshall, Wood is cheaper, under control for five years instead of one, and has experience starting if we need a swingman or suffer several injuries on the starting staff.

    That’s how I thought the Reds were going to use Wood this year, anyhow, as the second LHP in the bullpen.

  10. @Steve Mancuso: Well don’t forget, the Reds started last season minus Bailey and Cueto, and probably should have been down Arroyo for his mono. Wood is the best thing they’ve got left in AAA if the injury bug hits. That doesn’t make him untradeable, but it should give them pause.

  11. @Dave Lowenthal: “You don’t trade 131 OPS+ position players for a pitching prospect with a history of control issues”

    “You don’t trade for ex-crackheads that could fall off the wagon at any second for a pitching phenom that has carried the Reds to a Pennant” is what Rangers talkingheads would be saying if things worked out in favor of the Reds.

    Anything can be cherry-picked, Dave.

  12. @Steve Mancuso: Every team ends up needing 8-10 starting pitchers by the time a season is over. Remember how quickly our perceived starting pitcher glut dried up just last year?

  13. @secondguessingfanbase: I will not say it’s an awful trade if Latos gets hurt. Alonso and Hamilton are not the same thing. One was a major league player putting up huge numbers in CENTER FIELD, the other is a player who plays first base and in my mind is still a prospect. Moreover, there’s an enormous difference in trading:

    a relatively established hitter for a pitching prospect with control issues


    a not established hitter (a prospect!) for an established pitcher with no control issues

  14. @Steve Mancuso: I don’t think anyone questions whether Marshall makes the 2012 team better (unless a couple pitchers get hurt at the same time). The issue is whether we’re significantly overpaying for the improvement. I think we’d all feel better if there was a sign-and-trade or something like that.

    For example, Sergio Santos was signed to a 3 year, $8 million deal w/ 2 club options, then traded to Toronto for Nestor Molina. Molina was a reliever, wasn’t even in the top 30 in the Blue Jays system, (but was coming off a great year so he’ll probably be top 10 this year).

  15. Anyway, in terms of Wood’s value, I think it’s probably right on his career averages.

    2010 – Wood had a very good year (102 IP, 3.51 ERA, 1.08 WHIP), but largely on an unrealistically low BABIP (.261).

    2011 – He was pretty bad (106 IP, 4.84 ERA, 1.49 WHIP), but it was largely on an unrealistically high BABIP (.333).

    Career – His overall career BABIP now is .299, which I think is right around league average, so I’m estimating that his career totals (4.18 ERA, 1.29 WHIP) are reasonable guesses for what he is.

    The only other noteworthy thing that jumps out at me is that he’s very much a flyball pitcher (GB/FB ratio = 0.48 career, league average being 0.81). His HR’s allowed have been OK so far, largely b/c a low percentage of flyballs allowed have gone out of the park (5.3% HR/FB vs. a league average of 7.3%). I don’t know enough about it to know if that’s something that’s repeatable or if that’s probably fluky?

    To sum it up, I’d say Wood is basically a healthy, 24-year-old, league-average lefty starting pitcher. Cheap and under team control for 5 more years. That has value.

    How does that compare to 1 year of a great lefty reliever? I don’t know, but it seems to me Wood has more value than that. (Not in 2012, but over 2012-16, yes.)

  16. My goodness, the Reds MUST use Chapman as a starter if they trade Wood. After Wood on the current 40 man roster, the next guys up to start are Kyle Lotzkar and Pedro Villareal. I think that might have to change in the spring.

  17. @Aaron Lehr: I dont’t read Grantland but do talk regularly with a pretty large group of fellow sabernerds. I’m not surprised these type of things filter down!

  18. @Steve Mancuso: It’s probably better if Marshall isn’t slated as the closer, because that’s not always the highest-leverage situation to use your best reliever (which he will most likely be), and Dusty is going to use the closer almost exclusively in save situations.

    I like Wood, but the Reds can always just sign Paul Maholm if they need a Paul Maholm-type to fill out the back of the rotation or pitch in long relief. He wouldn’t cost all that much. But I have a feeling, based on the most recent reports, that the Cubs are more interested in the unnamed prospects than Wood. That could either kill the deal or make us hate it.

  19. @Travis G.: It makes sense that Theo would be looking to replenish a neglected farm system. He must think Walt wants this real bad.

  20. @Travis G.: Something in mlbtraderumors.com also mentioned that Theo had some interest in Wood last year, when Theo was still in Boston.

    He may just have identified him as someone he thinks is undervalued by his current team. (And he may be right!)

  21. Prospects are just that prospects. To me this deal is Wood for Marshall/draft pick.

  22. @Dave Lowenthal: I liked Hamilton, thought the babysitting was a bit much, notwithstanding his talent was worth telling others about.

    If Edinson’s talent could ever make me not miss Hamilton in CF, the guy must’ve been something else. Sad the way it ended for him but I think he had to go for his sake.

  23. The thing we should not forget is that the original report says Wood AND additional prospects.

  24. the issue i have with this trade is that bailey is out of options and wood is not. that means if we keep bailey, he has to be on the big league team, so that pushes chapman to the minors, and i don’t see the point of that.

    trading bailey makes more sense, because then wood can really be the 6th starter in AAA, ready to take chapman’s place if his innings get too high, or step in if there’s an injury.

    the other option is to just keep them both, forget marshal, and see what bailey can do out of the pen. i bet it would be pretty good (see lecure, sam) and we wouldn’t have to give up more prospects etc.

    not saying bailey would be as good as marshall, who i really like, but he’s cheaper, and keeping wood gives us more depth/flexibility.

  25. @al: Bailey and Wood aren’t interchangeable. Bailey’s peripherals indicate a higher ceiling. Options are not important enought to make the switch between the two.

    Wood and 2 PTBNLs is more than alright in this deal. I would be thrilled if the deal were effectuated after the Cubs renegotiated his contract to extend for 3 years – 12 million or something.

  26. @secondguessingfanbase: I’m sorry, but you just don’t trade a good hitter in the major leagues, or a good pitcher for that matter (but especially a good hitter), for a pitching *prospect*. Especially one with control issues. I don’t care how much talent he has.

    Let’s try to find something as close as possible to Hamilton for Volquez. It’d be, say, Mat Latos for Brad Boxberger, if Boxberger was a starter. He strikes out more than Volquez and walks more than Volquez in the minors. He’s a phenom in terms of talent. The Pads would have been out of their mind nuts to do something like that. Obviously, Boxberger is a reliever (though some think he could start, though that’s nuts IMO), and Latos is younger and not an ex drug user), so it’d cost a bit more. But instead, an established major league player cost the phenom pitching prospect AND a lot more. The Pads extracted a fair price. The Reds extracted Danny Herrera in addition to Volquez. I now want to go throw up recalling it.

    The Reds made an incredibly stupid deal from a philosophical point of view.
    (Note: obviously, you do make such a trade in a contract year, a dump trade. Hamilton was not a salary dump trade.)

  27. @dn4192: Is this back to your dartboard theory of prospects? I wonder if the Pads agreed to throw three darts at the Reds minor league system and it just happened to come up Alonso, Grandal, and Boxberger.

    • @dn4192: Is this back to your dartboard theory of prospects? I wonder if the Pads agreed to throw three darts at the Reds minor league system and it just happened to come up Alonso, Grandal, and Boxberger.

      I will move any prospect at any time for a proven major league player. There is zero proof that any of the prospects we sent to SD will ever be major league players on a good/great level. Now may they be serviceable, sure, but we know Latos can pitch on this level.

      Give me a proven player any day over a prospect.

  28. @rightsaidred: i disagree, i don’t think that much of bailey, and he’s going to be more expensive for the reds. i would gladly move him instead of wood. i think wood is more valuable to the reds than bailey.

  29. @secondguessingfanbase: No need to be a jerk. And if for some strange reason your comment which reads “unemployed individuals who sit on blogs all day are lazy” was directed towards me, then you need check yourself. I’m getting ready to head to Afghanistan for another 6 months as an NCO. Lazy is not a good description of me or my job. But Edinson Volquez IS LAZY. Watch games from the last year. It’s obvious. He couldn’t pitch at first in spring training because he waited too long to apply for his work visa. Hustle, work ethic, and desire are not a measurable stat. They are still vauable traits though. Volquez didn’t have it.

  30. To me as this drags out the odds grow nothing happens. I mean there was little to no press on teh Latos deal and BAM it happened. I think the Cubbies are geting greedy and Walt is going to look elseware…

  31. I wonder who the 2 minor leaguers we are giving up will be? Anybody seen the names yet?

  32. Wood for Marshall I can see … MAYBE. Wood + 2 (I don’t care who the two are) is silly wrong.

  33. Two prospects better be someone I’ve never heard of. Either that or I hope its a journeyman that gets his shot. Maybe a Danny Dorn-type. Bad business decision but at least makes me feel good for the player.

  34. fay is saying that he doesn’t think the two players will be prospects. all i can say is that i hope he’s right.

    sorry to see wood go, but as an extreme flyball pitcher, he really wasn’t a good fit.

  35. Man, the Cubs fans comments on the mlbtraderumors site make me ill. Clearly most think nothing of Wood nor of the fact that Marshall is insignifcant to them if their (lack of a) starting staff can’t get the game in good shape to him. No way this trade should garner the Cubs anybody near the Top 10 list. By near I mean top 25. Good luck Mr. Wood.

  36. @Dave Lowenthal:

    I think the more appropriate point is that Volquez wasn’t exactly lighting the prospect rankings on fire, and thus trading Hamilton for he and Herrera was an example of selling absurdly low. If the deal had been made for the equivalent of Matt Moore right now (sans contract anyway), or Michael Pineda this time last year, I could understand the move if you had a strong need for pitching.

  37. The minor leaguers were involved to send some cash back to Reds country most likely. What if the Reds were to give Marshall a shot at closing? Think it might improve the odds of an extension? If that’s the thinking, I am not as turned off by the trade. I still believe that a few seasons of a cost controlled #4 lefty are more valuable than any eigth inning set up guy, but using Marshall as a rather inexpensive closer and extending him makes it much easier to swallow. Of course I really hope I’ve never heard of the minor leaguers.

  38. @Tanner Lewis: If you want to find out if the Reds are emptying their minor league teams of all the prospects, you need to go to the sights that are their minor league affiliates. They are the Louisville Bats (AAA), The Pensacola Blue Wahoos AA(but look up the stats for the Carolina Mudcats)Bakersfield Blaze (High A),Dayton Dragons (Low A)and the two rookie clubs Billings Mustangs and Arizona Leaue Reds. Many of the Reds best prospects are in High A and Low A. They should be in AA this year and maybe AAA. Both Dayton and Bakersfield made the playoffs this past season.

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