The Mayor’s Offseason Plan

PREAMBLE

We’re right on the cusp here, but a few key additions are needed.  I’m not expecting an enormous, top-tier free agency signing, but this is the offseason for Rick Hahn to get bold (you’ll see what I mean below).  I’m banking on an aggressive offseason where we can hopefully make a run at a postseason spot thanks to a cost-cutting Indians roster and a (hopefully) sure to regress Twins team.  2020 was always the year, no more moving the goal posts.  So, here we go:

ARBITRATION-ELIGIBLE PLAYERS

  • Alex Colomé, $10.3M
    • Non-Tender – Not feeling $10.3 million here.  Let’s see what some of the younger guys can do in the pen
  • Yolmer Sánchez, $6.2M
    • Non-tender – no chance at that money
  • James McCann, $4.9M
    • Tender – no-brainer, we got no one else
  • Carlos Rodon, $4.5M
    • Tender – not ready to give up on a first round pick yet
  • Leury García, $4M
    • Tender – Lightning Leury’s earned a role as a super utility man
  • Evan Marshall, $1.3M
    • Tender – was good enough in 2019 to warranty a spot
  • Josh Osich, $1M
    • Tender – Why not
  • Ryan Goins, $900K
    • Non-Tender – meh

CLUB OPTIONS

  • Welington Castillo: $8 million/$500,000 buyout
    • Decline – at half this price maybe, at $8MM happy trails

OTHER IMPENDING FREE AGENTS

  • Jose Abreu (made $16M in 2019)
    • Retain – 3 years $45MM.  No brainer for me.  He’s still a solid first baseman, and if he’s hitting 5-6 in the order his value goes up given his production.  Plus the intangibles are important.
  • Iván Nova (made $9,166,167 in 2019)
    • Gone – not worth the spot
  • Jon Jay (made $4M in 2019)
    • Gone – no chance at Manny this year
  • Hector Santiago (made $2M in 2019 on split contract)
    • Gone – I’d like to get off the Hector Santiago ride now

FREE AGENTS

No. 1: Madison Bumgarner – 5 years, $90 million

The biggest surprise is he’s only 30.  Yes, this is absolutely overpaying, but we have salary to work with.  When healthy, he’s a lock for 200 innings and he knows how to win in the playoffs.  Plus, having a no nonsense starter that can bring a little fire might be just what the doctor ordered.

No. 2: Tanner Roark- 3 years, $30 million

Steady back end starter we can use as a bridge for a few years until some prospect depth gets here.  Should be able to get us 2 WAR in his sleep, anything over that out of the 4-5 slot is a bonus.

No. 3: Eric Thames – 2 years, $14 million

Not the flashiest move, but assuming the Brewers move on Thames is a guy that should hit 25-30+ HR from the left side at the Rate.  Absolute textbook KW signing, plus he can spell Eloy in left and allows for flexibility between DH, OF, and 1B.  Win-Win.

No. 4: Daniel Hudson – 2 years, $6 million

Who doesn’t love a comeback story?  Not to mention he throws absolute smoke.  Plus, I don’t really want to spend big on a higher tier guy like Will Smith, so this works.  Plug him in the back and see what happens.

No. 5: Stephen Vogt – 1 year, $700K

Don’t read too much into this.  We just need another catcher.

TRADES

I’m using https://www.baseballtradevalues.com/trade-simulator/ for values below to at least evaluate legitimacy of these.

No. 1: Trade Dylan Cease, Steele Walker, and Micker Adolfo (52.80) for Mookie Betts (51.40) ($27.7MM projected salary)

Obviously, this is predicated on being able to get an extension done.  We don’t spend big in free agency, which leaves the door open here.  This might be wishful thinking, but I’m thinking Rick Hahn sees an opportunity and blows the doors off.  Of course dealing Cease is a risk given the injuries in the minors, but you need to take risks now and then.  For an MVP when we can try to buy some arms to buy the guys in the minors time?  Sign me up now.

SUMMARY

Total Payroll: $117.4MM (if my math is right). If Jerry is ok paying an MVP real money, then bring back Colome and we get to $127ish

Lineup:

C: James McCann

1B: Jose Abreu

2B: Nick Madrigal

SS: Tim Anderson

3B: Yoan Moncada

LF: Eloy Jimenez

CF: Luis Robert

RF: Mookie Betts

DH: Eric Thames

Bench: Zack Collins and/or Danny Mendick, Stephen Vogt, Leury Garcia, Adam Engel

Rotation:

1: Lucas Giolito (R)

2: Madison Bumgarner (L)

3: Michael Kopech (R) (someone on a Minor League Deal til he’s ready, don’t care who)

4: Tanner Roark (R)

5: Reynaldo Lopez (R)

Rodon as possible depth when/if he can throw in 2019.

Bullpen:

Aaron Bummer (L), Kelvin Herrera (R), Daniel Hudson (R), Jace Fry (L), Carson Fulmer (R), Josh Osich (L), Evan Marshall (R), Ian Hamilton & Friends from AAA Until We Find Someone Who Sticks

Overall feeling?  If we’re not gunning for a playoff spot in 2020 what’re we doing?  Time to actually sit at the table.

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