Wrapping Up The MLB Trade Deadline

We’re going through every trade since Tuesday.  Quite a deadline, but not as chaotic as last year.

Royals get: Ben Zobrist, cash

A’s get: Sean Manaea, Aaron Brooks

The Royals were the favorites for Zobrist after the Mets bowed out.  I’m not sure this is the piece the Royals needed.  They addressed pitching, but I didn’t feel like they needed anything else.

Zobrist is mostly going to play outfield for Kansas City.  He’s so versatile, and was the best utility player on the market by a mile.  Outfield, if they were going to add something else, was the top priority for them, in my opinion.  Sure, they got that, but I feel like they over-paid for Zobrist, when they could have gotten strictly an outfielder like Justin Upton or Carlos Gomez.

The prospects going to Oakland are juicy.  Sean Manaea now ranks as the A’s No.4 prospect, and top pitching prospect.  The A’s got great value for Zobrist, and they were going to coming into it.  I just didn’t expect that team to be Kansas City.

Nationals get: Jonathan Papelbon, cash

Phillies get: Nick Pivetta

The Nationals now have one of the best bullpens in baseball, and look around.  Teams aren’t building super rotations as frequently as monster bullpens.  The Nationals, since they have a faulty defense with a -14 DRS, need good pitching, whether it’s starting or relieving.  They’ve now completed the relieving side, as they had already taken care of the starters long ago.

The Phillies were going to get value out of Papelbon, and they did with Nick Pivetta.  Pivetta is now the Phillies No.10 prospect, in what’s a deep farm system.

Angels get: David Murphy, David DeJesus

Rays get: Eduar Lopez

Indians get: Eric Staments

These were really two separate trades, but I’m putting them together since they were made within 10 minutes of each other.

Everyone was confused with the Angels when this went down.  First, they traded for two outfielders with the name David.  Secondly, this gave them a 3rd left fielder on their active roster.

Everyone then settled down and figured it out:  With Matt Joyce struggling, the Angels were going to platoon Shane Victorino and David Murphy in left field, then platoon at DH with David DeJesus.  That’s their thinking.

I mean, I guess.  Murphy hasn’t exactly been great in left since he joined the Angels (Did you see Wednesday night’s Angels-Astros game?? LOL).  They’re in the middle of a division race, so I guess they’re doing what they think will work.  Good luck with that.

Neither prospect is in either teams’ top 30, nor have I heard of either.

Rangers get: Cole Hamels, Jake Diekman, cash

Phillies get: Nick Williams, Jorge Alfaro, Matt Harrison, Jake Thompson, Jered Eickhoff, Alec Asher

We knew Cole Hamels was gonna get moved.  We’d been talking about it for almost a year now.  After a huge race, the Rangers ended up the winners.

After Hamels threw a no-hitter Saturday, offers from teams were increased, but I didn’t expect the no-hitter to play a huge role.  I thought his value would remain the same.

Turns out, the Phillies over-sold Hamels.  He desperately wanted out, which was something I’d thought decrease his trade value.  Teams dropped out as the price got higher.  Now that we see what that price was, I totally get why teams like the Giants, Dodgers, and Astros dropped out.

Look at what the Phillies got.  Three of those names are future stars, and all five prospects are in the Rangers’ top 30.  Matt Harrison seemed to be a throw-in since the Rangers got more than Hamels out of the deal.

Jorge Alfaro has huge upside as a catcher, with a Yadier Molina-like arm.  Nick Williams is a huge name, and will be a great offensive outfielder.  Those are only two of the five prospects the Rangers gave up, in a deal that’s gonna have huge repercussions in the future.

The Rangers currently sit 8 games back in the AL West, and 4 games back in the Wild Card.  However, unlike most pitchers on the trade market, Hamels is locked up.  His contract is through 2019, where he’s owed a ton of money till then.  This move isn’t only about this season for Texas.  It’s about the future of their rotation.  Paring Hamels with Yu Darvish next season (and for many seasons to come) will be fun, especially for Rangers fans.

But is giving up five top 30 prospects, including two future stars, worth it?

It depends on what a team values more.  Position players or pitchers.  Free agents or the draft.  The Rangers have been able to sign free agents for awhile now, and draft really well (as this trade shows).  Texas may not make the playoffs this year, but they sure have some promising pieces.  Pieces that they know will turn out.

That’s the risk everyone has to take.  Unless the trade totally backfires, there’s no way all five prospects the Rangers traded will live up to their potential.  That’s a win right there for Texas.

Again, this is not going to be a trade that we immediately know who’s the winner.  This may go on until Hamels’ contract is up.  Or until the Phillies call up the prospects the obtained.

Then there’s the argument of “Well, the Rangers made this trade without giving up Joey Gallo, Chi Chi Gonzalez, or Nomar Mazara.”  Ok, well, they still gave up three of their top 10 guys, where two of those will be stars.  It did seem however, that Mazara and Joey Gallo were untouchable, and had the Phillies asked, there might have been an “How dare you?” from one of the Rangers’ front office people.

This was all about the future for both teams.  Who gets the higher reward, that remains to be seen.

Pirates get: Joe Blanton

Royals get: Cash

After the trade above, this is a little bit of a dud.  Again, super bullpens.  More on the Pirates later.

Cardinals get: Brandon Moss

Indians get: Rob Kaminsky

With Matt Holiday being out again with an injury, this makes perfect sense for the Cardinals.

Holiday being hurt again isn’t only bad for the Cardinals, but it just sucks as a baseball fan.  This just isn’t his year.

Anyways, Moss is a huge get for St. Louis.  He gives them the offense they lack without Holiday, and man, Moss is clutch.

It came at a price though.  Rob Kaminsky is now the Indians 3rd best prospect overall.  The left hander has dizzied batters in the minors with his curveball.

This trade is gonna get underrated, and’ll be important down the road.  I just don’t know what side of it that’ll come from.

Blue Jays get: David Price

Tigers get: Matt Boyd, Daniel Norris, Jario Labourt

The Blue Jays needed an arm, badly.  Their pitching is what’s keeping them out of the playoff hunt, as they sit 6 games back in the division and 2 games back in the AL Wild Card race.

For now, Toronto has to get back into the race.  Getting David Price is huge for that.  He immediately becomes their ace.

Detroit was gonna get a nice package back for him, and they sure did here.  Daniel Norris is promising prospect who’s had a rough year, but ranks 25th overall in the MLB Prospect rankings.  Matt Boyd, a rookie who’s gone 0-2 in the majors so far this season, is also promising.  Though his ERA is an ugly, ugly 14.85, his WAR in his two starts is only a -0.5.  It could be a lot worse.

Jario Labourt is a throw in here.  I’ve honestly never heard of him.

For Toronto, while Price will most likely be a rental, this gives them an ace moving forward.  Whether they make the playoffs or not, this move shows they’re truly all in.  Not everything pays off, but the Blue Jays are making themselves playoff contenders with their moves.  Now they need a run, and that’s something they’re plenty capable of.

Yankees get: Dustin Ackley

Mariners get: Jose Ramirez, Ramon Flores

Dustin Ackley was the best utility player on the market after Ben Zobrist got traded.  New York has had issues at 2nd base and shortstop this season, as they’re last in WAR at 2nd base with a -1.4.  Ackley’s been sub-par on offense this season, but is big upgrade at 2nd base per DRS.  Ackley can move around, as said above, but his defensive production drops at other positions.

Dodgers get: Mat Latos, Alex Wood, Jim Johnson, Michael Morse (more on him later), Bronson Arroyo, Luis Avillan, Jose Peraza, cash

Braves get: Hector Olivera, Paco Rodriguez, Zach Bird, draft pick

Marlins get: Kevin Guzmen, Jeff Brigham, Victor Araujo

Before this trade was completely finished, we’d been talking about it for 48 hours prior.  When the whole thing was confirmed, it totaled to a three team, 13 player, blockbuster deal, where the Dodgers receive multiple impact players, the Braves get a very nice prospect, and the Marlins continue to be the Marlins.

Let’s break it down team by team…

The Dodgers acquired two starters in this deal, after losing out on Cole Hamels and David Price.  There were rumors that Alex Wood could be flipped, but that was when we thought the Dodgers were landing one of the two bigger pitching names.  Los Angeles was looking to upgrade their rotation, and they end up getting two guys who’re solid.  Mat Latos has had a rough year, partly due to the offseason trade that sent him from the Reds to Miami.  However, it gives the Dodgers a reliable arm.  They know what they’re getting out of Latos.

Alex Wood is only 24, and has had a good year at 7-6 and a 3.54 ERA.  This is a guy who still has development to go through, but it gives the a promising young arm, who can help them immediately.  Jim Johnson has had a pinball career, but it pitching well this season with a 1.4 WAR.  He gives the Dodgers another bullpen arm, which again, we know what teams have done so far with this deadline:  Super bullpens.

Michael Morse got DFA’d, then traded, and Bronson Arroyo got traded again.  Nothing to see here.  Jose Peraza is ranked as the No.30 prospect in baseball, which seems like a straight up swap for Hector Olivera.

The Braves get one big piece out of this, and that’s international prospect Hector Olivera.  After signing a major contract with the Dodgers in the offseason, he hadn’t been called up, and was battling injuries.  The Braves were happy to have him, since they were the runner-up to the Dodgers for his services.  Getting rid of Alex Wood can’t feel good, but when you’re trading with multiple teams, lots of players get tossed around.  Wood happened to be one of those.

Then there’s the Marlins, who continue to be the Marlins.  Trying to save money by letting solid players go and getting nothing back for them.

That’s a tad bit of a stretch, but they basically got two prospects who have some potential back for a solid starting pitcher and good outfielder.  Jeff Bigham and Victor Araujo rank in their top 30, but the Marlins could have, if they wanted to, gotten more back.

Pirates get: Joakim Soria

Tigers get: JaCoby Jones

I think the Tigers should just put a pitching machine out there for the other team to hit when their starters come out.  Detroit needed bullpen, even though they are in fact sellers.  The last thing they should of done was trade relievers, and that’s what they did with Joakim Soria.

It came at a price for Pittsburgh.  JaCoby Jones is now the Tigers No.11 prospect in their farm system.

However, the Pirates are doing what many other teams are.  Building a super bullpen in front of their defense, which in the Pirates case, is pretty average.  Soria is reliable, and gets out of the disaster which is the Tigers’ bullpen.

Astros get: Carlos Gomez, Mike Fiers

Brewers get: Josh Hader. Adrian Houser, Brett Phillips, Domingo Santana

After one of the weirdest trades not to happen, Carlos Gomez got sent to Houston instead of the Mets.  There was no question the Brewers were going to move him, it was just a matter of when.

With George Springer hurt, the Astros have been struggling in right field.  Getting Gomez gives them a solid outfielder and a bat, which the Astros seem like they can’t get enough of.

Houston was also looking for another pitcher, and they got one in Mike Fiers.  The Brewers were unlikely to move Fiers earlier this week, but obviously the Astros threw in more prospects to make them move him.

Speaking of those prospects, two of them are Top 100 in the MLB.  Brett Phillips is the 39th ranked prospect in all of baseball, and could be the outfielder of the future for the the Brewers.  Domingo Santana is another promising outfielder, who has an insane OPS in the minor leagues.

The Astros, with this deadline, have established themselves as a serious threat, and look like the best team in their division.

Giants get: Mike Leake

Reds get: Adam Duvall, Keury Mella

San Francisco has had a sketchy rotation all year when it comes to injuries.  The Giants pushed for Cole Hamels, but as we read above, the price was way too high for them.  Mike Leake became officially available yesterday, so the Giants jumped on a cheaper, but still solid starter.  Leake will jump right into the rotation with Tim Hudson hurt.

The Reds got a good deal here, and I’m very sad to see Adam Duvall go from San Francisco.  However, the Giants are thinking long term, and hope to re-sign Leake when he becomes a free agent at the season’s end.

Orioles get: Gerardo Parra

Brewers get: Zach Davies

The Orioles have had trouble making up their minds at this deadline, but now it’s clear they were buyers.  Gerardo Parra is a good bat, and is exactly what they were looking for.  However, I feel like the Brewers over-sold him, as Zach Davies was the 3rd best prospect in the Orioles system prior to the trade.

Cubs get: Dan Haren

Marlins get: Elliot Soto, Ivan Pineyro

I like this move for the Cubs.  It wasn’t expensive, as neither prospect is in the MLB Top 100.  Dan Haren is getting old, but is having a good season at 7-7 with a 3.42 ERA.  They needed one more arm.

Blue Jays get: Ben Revere

Phillies get: Jimmy Cordero, Alberto Tirado

Hey look!  The Blue Jays traded for someone who doesn’t hit home runs!  It’s a miracle!   Anyways, Revere is having a nice season offensively, but I don’t really see why the Blue Jays did this.  They already got what they needed.  They over-exceeded going “All in”.  It’s low risk considering what they’re giving up.  There was a team who could’ve used Revere more than Toronto.

Twins get: Kevin Jepsen

Rays get: Chih-Wei Hu, Alexis Tapia

The Twins had to upgrade their bullpen.  I was telling friends that, if a move was going to happen for them, it would be in the bullpen.  Kevin Jepsen has a 0.6 WAR on the season, which is fine.  His low ERA is a better sign at 2.86.  Minnesota got a better setup guy for Glen Perkins.  With their starters 18th in innings, they need a strong bullpen to take over.  That’s been part of the problem this season… Why they blow leads and such.

A’s get: Felix Doubront

Blue Jays get: Cash

Remember when Felix Doubront was good?? Yeah, happier times then.

Mets get: Yoenis Cespedes

Tigers get: Michael Fulmer, Luis Cessa

The Mets, after flopping on Carlos Gomez and Jay Bruce, finally got their bat.  Yoenis Cespedes has been a pinball the past two seasons, but he makes impacts offensively and defensively.  He loves Citi Field, as the Home Run Derby two years ago showed.

This completes the Mets’ week.  They landed Juan Uribe, Kelly Johnson, Tyler Clippard, and Yoenis Cespedes in a week, filling holes and boosting offense.  This is huge for Mets fans.  They’ve been complaining forever.  Their ownership has realized the time is now.

Cubs get: Tommy Hunter

Orioles get: Junior Lake

This deal came across late, as did the one below.  I love Junior Lake, though he’s had a rough year and hasn’t played much.  I think it was a little tough for the Cubs to move him.

The Cubs wanted to get someone for the bullpen, and they got that in Tommy Hunter.  He’s been solid this season with a 3.63 ERA, but has a small WAR value, and gives up a lot of hits.  The Cubs were desperate, and when you’re desperate late, Tommy Hunter’s the type of guy you end up with.

Pirates get: Michael Morse, cash

Dodgers get: Jose Tabata

Oh there’s so many storylines with this trade.  First, Michael Morse did end up getting flipped, as many expected him to.  However, we thought the Dodgers would trade him to get some big name.  I’m pretty sure they weren’t trying to trade for Jose Tabata, who became famous after this.

Morse gives the Pirates some more offense.  He was DFA’d after being acquired by the Dodgers.

Pirates get: J.A. Happ

Mariners get: Adrian Sampson

Pirates making moves late!  I’ve always liked J.A. Happ.  His story’s very cool after he was struck by a line drive in the head in 2013.  Anyways, he’s struggled this year, and the Blue Jays were probably going to pull him out of the rotation had he not improved.  The Pirates are gonna do something with Happ.  I don’t know….   It’s pretty surprising that Seattle got an actual person out of this trade.  I thought, when it first went down, it’d be for cash.


That’s all the trades from Tuesday onward!  Here’s a list of winners and disappointments.


  • Royals
  • Blue Jays
  • Mets
  • Astros
  • Phillies
  • Dodgers


  • Padres
  • Yankees
  • Red Sox
  • White Sox
  • Twins (kinda)
  • Marlins
  • Reds
  • Diamondbacks

Breaking Down All Of The Recent MLB Trades

Friday’s MLB Trade Deadline has gotten quite a head start.  We’ve had multiple moves over the weekend, and are expecting more.  I’m gonna run through all the latest trades.  And trust me, there’s more coming.  That’ll be addressed later.

I am so, so bad at writing intros.  

Marlins get: Kyle Barraclough

Cardinals get: Steve Cishek

I was a little surprised the Cardinals were trading for bullpen help out of anything.  Heck, I’m surprised the Cardinals traded for anything at all.  Just don’t screw it up St. Louis.  Cishek has struggled bit this season, with a 4.50 ERA and six losses as a reliever.  It’s low risk for St. Louis, which is okay with the way they’re playing.

Mets get: Juan Uribe, Kelly Johnson, cash

Braves get: John Gant, Robert Whalen

The Mets aren’t done with moves, even after getting Tyler Clippard (more on that later).  Juan Uribe gives the Mets a huge boost to a desperate offensive team.  Uribe’s produced a 1.1 oWAR this season, and has already surpassed that as a Met after hitting a walkoff double on Sunday.  Kelly Johnson can slide in anywhere with the Mets.  He’s a utility player, which makes trading for Ben Zobrist unlikely.

Again, the Mets aren’t done.  They’ve realized the time is now.

Royals get: Johnny Cueto, cash

Reds get: Brandon Finnegan, John Lamb, Cody Reed

With this trade, the Royals have gotten their ace.  Kansas City’s rotation ranks 23rd in WAR at 4.5.  Their starters are getting 6.1 innings per start, which is good compared to the rest of the MLB, but the Royals need an ace that’ll get them seven innings or more.  That’s what you need in the playoffs.  They didn’t have that last year.

This’ll probably be a rental for the Royals, but Cueto has a ton going for him with this move.  A playoff chance, a great defense behind him, and a more pitcher friendly ballpark.  And he’ll look good in blue.

Losing Brandon Finnegan is a tough blow for Royals fans.  He was fantastic in the playoffs last season, but Finnegan didn’t have the starter potential we once thought he did. That’s what made this easier for the Royals to part with him.  Neither prospect was in the Royals top 30, which is a cover UP way of saying I have no clue who they are….  Sorry.

Angels get: Shane Victorino, cash

Red Sox get: Josh Rutledge

Boston has finally cleared a little bit of space in that crowded outfield with this trade.  Shane Victorino was huge during the 2012 postseason, but he’s been battling injuries for awhile now.  The Angels are the perfect fit.  They’ve been wanting that third outfielder for awhile, and with Matt Joyce struggling immensely this year (slash line of .178/.274/.298), Victorino immediately becomes an upgrade.  Los Angeles now has quite an outfield with Mike Trout, Kole Calhoun, and Victorino.

Mets get: Tyler Clippard

A’s get: Casey Meinser

Lots of people weren’t happy with the Mets trading Casey Meinser, their 15th ranked prospect.  It made prospect expert Keith Law unhappy.


Yes, there’s some risk here.  But the Mets were about average when it came to bullpen WAR, at 2.3.  Tyler Clippard is a fantastic setup man. He has a 2.79 ERA on the season and strikes out a ton of guys.  Yes, he won’t pitch much, especially with the depth of the Mets rotation, but he’ll get you out of jams when others can’t.

Blue Jays get: Troy Tulowitzki, LaTroy Hawkins

Rockies get: Jose Reyes, Miguel Castro, Jeff Hoffman, Jesus Tinoco

The first blockbuster to happen prior to the deadline went down while I was sleeping last night.  When I woke up, I checked my phone, and the headline was “Carlos Gonzalez on trade block following Troy Tulowitzki deal”.  I had no clue.

I’d been under the impression that if the Rockies were going to move Tulo, it’d be to the Mets, and that was even after their (Mets) trade Friday.  I really didn’t think the Rockies would move him at all, but he’d been on Toronto’s radar for awhile now.  The Blue Jays had the pieces to get something done.  Colorado was open for business, apparently, and that’s how this deal was made.

My biggest problem with this trade was the fact that Toronto got rid of pitching prospects they haven’t replaced, yet.  Jeff Hoffman is the 69th rated prospect in all the Majors.  The Blue Jays surrendered three of their top 30 prospects to get Tulo, and 42 year old LaTroy Hawkins (who is effective!  I just like to make fun of his age.)

Getting rid of Jose Reyes was a no-brainer with Tulo coming in.  Tulo’s a huge upgrade at that spot, as he’s batting .300/.348/.471 compared to Reyes’ line at .285/.322/.385.  Tulo’s been below average defensively this year, but his -1 DRS is a lot better than Reyes’ at -9.  There’s also questions as to whether Reyes will remain in Colorado.  Reports suggest they could flip him somewhere, as they have multiple shortstop prospects.

Getting Tulo gives Toronto’s offense even more potential.  They’re already the best scoring team in the MLB, and with Tulo’s 1.8 oWAR, gap hitting and power (the power may diminish a bit with the new park), it gives Toronto a whole new dimension on offense.   It’s a huge splash.  A splash that tells us they’re all in.  Now they just have to catch up to the Yankees.  Toronto has a run in them, they just need some arms.

After the deadline, there will be a column wrapping up all the moves…. 

Figuring Out Who’s Getting Traded Or Not Before The MLB Trade Deadline

The MLB Trade Deadline is a week away.  The rumors are flying.  It’s amazing nothing happened prior to this column going up. 

See thoughts on the two trades that occurred yesterday below. 

Here, I put the biggest trade names into categories, to help figure out whether they’ll get traded or not.

“See ya later”

  • Cole Hamels
  • Jonathan Papelbon
  • Johnny Cueto

Pitchers!  This crop of trade candidates is all about the pitchers.  And there’s a lot of teams who want pitchers.  The Blue Jays, Yankees, Royals, and Red Sox are, or at least should be, interested in pitching.  Boston’s the biggest question.  If they want to make a 2nd half run, Boston has to trade for pitching.  The starting rotation has been terrible.  The ERA of their starters this season is 28th in the MLB, only in front of Colorado and Philadelphia.

These aren’t the only starting pitchers available (more on Papelbon later).  Names like Mike Fiers, Mat Latos, Kevin Gausman, Jon Niese have floated around.  But we know Boston is team that likes big names.  They’d be tempted to make a move for Cueto, but giving up guys (or prospects) for a one month rental (if a 2nd half rally failed) isn’t great.

I’ve been on the Hamels-Dodgers side for awhile.  Sure, Los Angeles would like Johnny Cueto, but would they run the risk of losing him in free agency?  The Dodgers would be, especially if they traded for him, a spot Cueto would look at.  However, the price on Cueto is gonna be higher than it will be Hamels.  The Dodgers don’t want to give up too much, but would be more willing to dump people than other teams.

I’m not sure what a Cueto deal would look like.  It’s hard to predict returns with MLB trades, since a lot of them involves prospects I’ve never heard of.  The Reds would be looking for prospects, as they enter a re-buidling phase.  Teams with strong farm systems would be better trade partners for Cincinnati.

Before the report of the Tigers looking to sell, Jonathan Papelbon made sense for a team that hasn’t been able to close games for the past couple seasons.  The Cubs now seem like the front-runners for Papelbon, as they’re 26th in save percentage.

Philadelphia is trading Hamels and Papelbon.  And maybe more, depending on how bad they want to be.

“Look, this was a tough decision”

  • Todd Frazier
  • James Shields
  • David Price
  • Jonathan Lucroy

The Lucroy thing is insane to me, but I won’t be shocked if it gains steam.  Reportedly, the Brewers weren’t interested in giving him a contract extension, which led to calls being made about Lucroy’s availability.  I floated on Twitter that if Boston is going to be buyers, then this would be the move to make.  Sure, they have Blake Swihart, but again, Boston likes big names.  They’d get a ton for Swihart, if a flip at catcher were to be made (say bring in Lucroy, and flip Swihart to Arizona or something… homer alert).

Oh look!  More pitchers!  These two pitching names are huge surprises.  No one saw either name being available at this year’s deadline, but this is the season of disappointments, and the Padres and Tigers have not met their projections.  Both pitchers have had good seasons, Price especially.  Shields has a good record with a high ERA, which can be attributed to his poor outfield, who’s DRS ranks 26th in the MLB.  Furthermore, Shields’ poorer stats can be blamed on his team.  He’s striking out 10.2 batters per nine innings, which is a great number.

Price is more likely to be moved.  The Tigers thinking, if they’re in fact sellers, is that they have the talent, but don’t have the ability to catch up to everyone else.  The AL Wild Card is a cluster, and the Royals are running away from everyone in the AL Central.  Selling makes this season a lost one, but gives them a cleaner start for next season.  Plus, they’d get a ton back for Price, even though whoever gets him will get a rental.

“How dare you offer me that?”

  • Carlos Gonzalez
  • Jordan Zimmerman
  • Jonathan Lucroy

These are guys who probably won’t be moved.  I talked about Lucroy above, and how that could gain some steam.

But Carlos Gonzalez is a huge name, and great player, who could be a huge offensive boost to a team.  The Mets would be a nice option, but they need left side infielders, not outfielders.  Gonzalez has had a down year, but the Rockies would get a good return, and might be able to oversell him to a desperate team (Cough, Mets, cough).  Again, the move by that certain team would more about offense, rather than defense as Carlos’ DRS is +1 on the season.

It’s not likely to happen, and it’s hard to pull a team out of a hat that could use him, but we’ve seen surprises before at the deadline.

“I think we need to make a splash”

  • Ben Zobrist to the Mets
  • Johnny Cueto to the Dodgers
  • James Shields to the Blue Jays
  • Adrian Beltre to the Giants

The last one is insane, and wasn’t thought of by me.  Matt Duffy has been fine.

The other three trades involve three big names.  The three teams I have listed all want a big name.  Whether it’s for the team itself, for the fans, or for true fit, they want a name.

I’ve tackled Cueto and Shields.  The A’s already made one move (more on that later), and many think the next one will be Ben Zobrist.  It’s not a matter of if, it’s a matter of when.  There’s a ton of teams interested, but the Mets make most sense.  He may not be the biggest offensive producer they could get, but it’ll give them a bit more power and more sturdiness on the left side of the infield.  Another plus: You can play him anywhere.

The Mets have to do something, and I think there’s multiple moves coming.  One for Zobrist, one for someone else.  They certainly don’t need pitching.  New York’s owners have to realize the time is now, unlike the Knicks.  This team could be really, really good, better than they are now, with some moves.  The owners have to green light the front office by next Friday.  The Mets have to convince them that what they’re seeing is true.

On the Scott Kazmir trade…

I had to do some editing above, because I had Kazmir mentioned with other teams.  Kazmir got dealt prior to his scheduled start against Toronto yesterday.  The move was official after video caught Scott Kazmir hugging teammates, triggering a #hugwatch.  It was then learned the team was the Astros.

It’s perfect.  Houston didn’t want or need a big name.  They wanted a solid addition who’d boost the rotation, already ranked 10th in the MLB by WAR.  Kazmir’s had a solid season with a 2.38 ERA and a  3.0 WAR.  He’ll be a free agent in the Fall, but the Astros feel confident that even with the trade, they’ll have a shot at re-signing him.

This was the first domino to fall.  Whether the next one comes out of Oakland or not remains to be seem.  Bottom line:  The market price has been set.


On the Aramis Ramirez trade….

The biggest subplot of this trade is that Pedro Alvarez’s time with the Pirates is over.  Trading for Ramirez is a smart move, which’ll give them an offensive boost.  This is more about Ramirez himself though.

Drafted by the Pirates in 1998, he’ll be returning to his original team, in his last season as a big leaguer.  Aramis is retiring at the end of this year. Milwaukee did the right thing by shipping him to a contender.  Pittsburgh’s really coming on, and are destined to make a playoff run.  It’s pretty cool Aramis will be a part of that.

The Pedro Alvarez trade should be announced soon, and it sounds like Pittsburgh is shopping him to everyone.  Any takers will be hard to find.

More content coming next week.  I’ll be at Yankees-Twins tonight.  

Why Getting Dez And Demaryius’ Deals Done Are Huge For The Cowboys and Broncos

We came into Wednesday’s Franchise Tag Deadline with five names to watch:  Dez Bryant, Demaryius Thomas, Jason Pierre Paul, Justin Houston, and Stephen Gostkowski.  Out of those five players, four deals got done.

The five players above were all Franchise Tagged in the Spring, in the midst of the free agent frenzy.  Wednesday’s deadline was simple:  If those players wanted long-term contracts, they had to be signed before the deadline.  If they weren’t, they sign the Franchise Tender (or tag; I’ll refer to it as both).

Jason Pierre Paul was the only player who wasn’t signed Wednesday, and that makes plenty of sense.  After almost blowing his hand over July 4th weekend (in which he lost his right index finger and sustained other hand injuries), it was no shocker that he wasn’t signed to a deal.  After the incident occurred, the Giants pulled a deal they were preparing to offer JPP, which was reportedly worth $60 million.

We don’t know what the Giants’ plans are for JPP.  He could sign the tag, go on some sort of injury list, or the Giants could cut him.  It sounds like he’ll definitely miss some games early this season.  There’s a lot that could happen with him.  Not all of it I care about and/or understand.

Now that we’re passed who didn’t sign, let’s go through the four deals that were signed Wednesday.

Justin Houston, six years, $101 million

As a Chiefs fan, I’m stoked this deal got done.  I didn’t want to risk Houston hitting the open market next Spring, and I’m sure the Chiefs didn’t either, especially if he had another monster season.

Out of the $101 million, $52.5 million of it is guaranteed.  That’s a lot of guaranteed money.  In fact, it’s the 2nd highest amount in the league for a defensive player, behind Ndamukong Suh.

This is a good deal from a short-term view.  It locks up one of the most underrated players in the league.  However, this is a long term contract.  It’s six years, longer than most deals.  My main concern with the contract is that the Chiefs paid him for what he’s done, not what he’s gonna do.  Houston had 22 sacks last year, most in the NFL.  Kansas City is paying him like he’s gonna keep doing that.  This deal pays him an average of $16.8 million.

There’s a chance this contract could look bad in year four or so if the Chiefs over-valued him.  But as a Kansas City fan, it bothers me too much to have that outlook.

Stephen Gostkowski, four years, $17 million

I found this hilarious.  Pay your kicker $3 million (though he’s gonna average $4.3 million) and make he’s hitting over 90% of his kicks.  That fact he was gonna be tagged for the 2nd straight year was ridiculous.  The fact I’m spending this many words on this is ridiculous.  Good for Gostkowski.

Dez Bryant, five years, $70 million

Demaryius Thomas, five years, $70 million

Coming into Wednesday, I didn’t think either one of these deals would’ve gotten done.  Both players were threatening with long holdouts, that included missing regular season games.

While all this was going on, reports came out that the two teams colluded about their two players’ situations.  Which, incase you’re not aware, is very much against the rules.

Here’s my biggest question about the possible collusion…. If the Broncos and Cowboys deny colluding, and wanted to truly show that they didn’t, how about giving your players different contracts!?  Dez Bryant and Demaryius Thomas got the same exact contract; the only difference is a $1.5 million increase for Dez when it comes to guaranteed money.

Whether they did or didn’t collude, it wasn’t smart of either team to give the players the same contract, because that’ll only give more fuel to the reports.

As for the contract themselves, this was huge for each team to get these deals done.  Had contracts not been signed, each player would’ve hit the market next Spring.

Let’s start with the Dez.  He was easily the bigger story, since he plays for the Cowboys.  Dez was threatening to holdout without a deal, which included missing games.  While negotiations were going on, I wasn’t sure there was anyone to blame.  I thought that Cowboys should’ve been doing all they could to get this done before the deadline, because there, in my opinion, was a chance Dez left after this season, due to a tense relationship with the Cowboys, part of it spurring from these negotiations.

Dallas is gonna be throwing the ball a lot this season since they have no running backs who can make it three weeks into the season.  If Dez was gonna be absent, it would’ve been a huge deficit for Tony Romo and the offense.  Dez is a top five receiver in the NFL.  Him hitting the market in the Spring would not have been in the Cowboys best interest.  The same goes for the Broncos with Demaryius Thomas.

I think the reason Demaryius’ situation was dimmed to the media was because the Broncos have other weapons.  OK, that’s a stretch, but there’s that group of people who still think Peyton Manning is 2013-2014 Peyton Manning.  People thought: “They’ll be fine, they have Peyton Manning.  He doesn’t need great weapons.”  But that’s the problem.  He’s not that guy anymore.  That’s why locking up Demaryius was so important.  Manning gonna have to rely on his receivers more, not himself.

Demaryius may not be a top five receiver in the league, but he’s darn near close.  The way the Broncos are paying Demaryius is like a top five receiver, which is fine, but it’s about the player’s value to the team, not how he compares to the rest of the league.

On the Brady Appeal, which is coming out today or nine months from now….

The most likely dates for the Brady Appeal to be released:

  • Right before the first game of the year
  • My first day of school
  • Christmas Eve
  • Never

Seriously, Roger Rabbit (I’m calling Roger Goodell that from now on.  Why?  Because remember, Roger Rabbit does comedy skits, but preforms them poorly, that’s JUST like Goodell.) this is getting ridiculous.  How long does it take?  I could figure this out faster.

The latest report is that if Roger Rabbit doesn’t whack off all four games of the suspension, he’s taking the thing to federal court, and’ll handle it there.  I don’t think Goodell has the testicular fortitude (this is becoming one of my favorite phases.  At least it won’t get me fired from anything, or suspended from school, which isn’t in session yet, thank god.) to whack all the games off, which is gonna tick Tom Brady off.

The bottom line:  Brady’s gonna make sure he doesn’t miss any games.  Whatever it takes.

2015 MLB All-Star Game Preview

The logo, once again, is great.

Since I attended last year’s MLB All-Star Game in Minneapolis, and wrote a preview, I figured I’d keep the tradition going.  While I won’t be in Cincinnati for the game, I am writing a preview.

This is always a fun game, with all the star power and excitement behind it.  However, it does mean something.  The winner gets home-field advantage in the World Series, which is huge, though it didn’t matter last year.  I love the idea, and always have.  It makes it watchable, in my opinion.  If there weren’t the stakes behind it, I wouldn’t write a preview.

Last year, I picked the AL to win, which they did.  That experience was unbelievable at Target Field, and I’ll never forget it.

This year, I hope to make that right pick again.  Let’s dive into each roster first.

NL Lineup:

NL Starting Pitcher: Zach Grienke

The NL is loaded with power.  Everyone on that roster has the potential to launch a ball.  As we saw last night, the ball flies in Great American Ballpark.  It’s the best hitting park in the league.  The NL will have to rely on the long ball, since they don’t posses many gap guys on the starting lineup.  However, off the bench, there’s more situational guys.  Guys who can get that double or single that brings in two runs with two outs in an inning.

There’s a lot of strategy that goes into this game.  The talent on the bench is just as good as on the field.  Some guys will only play one or two innings.  No one will play the whole game.  The fun part is giving guys chances to play.  That’s what this is about.  Everyone dreams about playing in the All-Star Game, not just getting voted in.

Zach Grienke has been quietly phenomenal this year, and gets the nod for the NL.  However, he’s got a lot of arms behind him, bullpen guys or not. If he’s in trouble, the NL can quickly recover.  That though, is an unlikely event.

AL Lineup:

AL Starting Pitcher: Dallas Keuchel

It’s funny, I like the AL’s bench more than I like their starting lineup.

First, I thought Chris Sale deserved to start.  It’s the All-Star Game.  He’s the bigger name.  No disrespect to Dallas Keuchel.  He’s been phenomenal this year, and is budding into a star.  The start for him will give his name a very big introduction to the casual fan.

The AL has a good balance of power and basic hitting.  The AL once again has the better defensive players, thanks to the heavy presence of Kansas City Royals.

An interesting side note exists in this game, and that’s the park itself.  While Great American Ballpark is a already a great place to hit, it favors lefties much more than righties, due to the way the Ohio River sits next to the ballpark.  Lefties will hit toward right field, which is where the river is This’ll have an impact, and’ll favor the NL more than the AL, due to their possession of more lefty batters.

I think the AL is gonna have a tough time swinging the bat.  However long Zach Greinke pitches might give them an advantage, but the NL’s staff in this game is so good.  There’s so many ERA below 2.00 guys.  The AL’s best hope in this game is to get in a pitcher’s duel, hope Keuchel was the right choice to start, and rely on their gap hitters.  That’s a lot that has to go right.

You get the point.  I’m taking the NL in this game.  They have so much power, which translates very well at Great American Ballpark.  The pitching staff is ridiculous; no matter who they put in will shut the AL down, at least from a power standpoint.  The AL has too much against them, offensively and defensively.  I hate the lineup, and am not thrilled by Keuchel starting instead of Chris Sale (though he will pitch tonight.).

This game is always fun.  I love watching it.  It was great in-person last year.  Keep in mind, this is for home-field advantage in the World Series.  This game is a big deal.  Most people aren’t fond of the whole home-field advantage thing.  I think it adds an element that no other sports have.  It makes it mean something.

Prediction: NL-7 AL-2

Categorizing All 30 MLB Teams At The Season’s Mid-Point

We’ve reached the mid-point of this strange, confusing MLB season.  Personally, I thought it’d be more exciting than it has been.  There’s been too many teams that’ve been underperforming. Like, way underperforming.  That’s our first category.

“We were supposed to be good” Category:

  • Boston Red Sox
  • Cleveland Indians
  • Seattle Mariners
  • Miami Marlins
  • San Diego Padres

When I talk about the season of disappointment, these are the teams I’m talking about.  Some of these have similar issues.  The Red Sox and Padres aren’t pitching too well, Boston especially.  The Red Sox have a rotation that’s ERA is 28th in the bigs by ERA.  The walk rate by the pitchers is horrendous.  Their offense has improved, as they’re 9th in runs scored, but certain players just aren’t producing.  The massive Hanley Ramirez contract has been a disaster, as he’s generating a -0.2 WAR.

Bottom line with the Red Sox:  The money they spent hasn’t paid off.  It might be time to truly turn to the young talent they have.

Quick Hits on this category:

  • The Mariners and Indians have both been killed by their bad defense.  The two are 24th and 25th in DRS.  Both teams have great pitching, which is keeping them where they are, sadly.
  • I’ve completely given up on the Marlins.  Jose Fernandez’s return was a great sign, but losing Giancarlo Stanton was devastating.  Their division has two competitors, which actually does help Miami.  Then again, this is a team managed by their GM.
  • I don’t think San Diego needs to blow it up at the Trade Deadline.  They need outfield help.  Flip someone for stronger arms, and a better bat, hopefully on the left hand side of the plate.

“See you next season!” Category:

  • Philadelphia Phillies
  • Oakland A’s
  • Milwaukee Brewers
  • Cincinnati Reds
  • Colorado Rockies
  • Chicago White Sox

The Reds and Phillies are the two biggest sellers at this upcoming Trade Deadline, and depending on what they do will shift the bigs.  Ryan Howard, even with the huge salary, could be a target for a team like St.Louis.  Chase Utley and Cole Hamels could be moved.  Hamels will be traded.  I’ve been pushing for the Dodgers to make that move, but I really don’t think, at this point, they’ll do it.  They’re fine for now.

The Reds could be floating Johnny Cueto, who’s a free agent in the Winter.  There’s no way he’s coming back to Cincinnati.  Getting rid of him now would give the Reds value out of losing him.  As we saw with Jon Lester last season, the team that trades for Cueto would get two months of him, depending on a playoff run or not.

Quick Hits on this category:

  • As much as I’d like to see Troy Tulowitzki moved, it won’t happen
  • Why are people surprised about the White Sox being bad?
  • All of these teams are going to be sellers.

(Sing it!) “Don’t you…. forget about me” Category:

  • The Whole AL East
  • Cleveland Indians
  • Seattle Mariners
  • Los Angeles Angels
  • New York Mets
  • San Francisco Giants

The Mets are getting overlooked simply because they have the World Series favorites Washington Nationals up three games on them in the lonely NL East (both East divisions suck this year).  The pitching has been phenomenal, and is 3rd in the NL.  I could keep going and going about the names in the rotation, and the insane stats their putting up.  The reason the Mets are getting overlooked is because they can’t score.  New York is 28th in the bigs in run scored, and the highest oWAR (offensive WAR) score they have is being put up by Curtis Granderson at 1.3.  That’s not good.  No one’s batting close to .300 (though almost no one is this year in the bigs).

I listen to Boomer&Carton quite a bit in the mornings on CBS Sports Network, and they’re always complaining about the offense.  It seems like something will happen, I’m just not sure who the right person is.  Maybe Adam Lind?  Or is that a big enough name?  It’s tough.  They’ll do something, and when they do, it’ll make them a whole lot scarier than they already are.

Quick Hits on this category:

  • Still deciding whether the AL East is a disaster or if it’s really good.
  • Yup, it’s a disaster. Boston is 5.5 games back of 1st place and has 41 wins.
  • I still have hope for the Indians and Mariners.  Those were my AL Wild Cards.  That’s as good as they can do at this point.
  • The Angels are in the Mets position.  They’re overshadowed by a more popular team who has a better story.
  • Yeah, the season’s been down.  But they have the AL MVP.  You can’t count them out.
  • The Giants fit this category perfectly.  It’s been and up and down year, but they’ve beaten projections.

“In a galaxy far, far away” Category:

  • St. Louis Cardinals
  • Los Angeles Dodgers
  • Washington Nationals
  • Kansas City Royals

These are the big boys.  The teams that are blowing away everyone.  And not unexpectedly!

Notice how three of these teams are NL teams?  Yeah!  Because the NL actually makes sense!

The NL has the true contenders.  The AL has a bunch of teams we can’t figure out.  When it comes to contenders, we know how they play.  There’s no questions.

The Cardinals have overcome major injuries and off-the-field distractions, yet have 56 wins.  Matt Adams is gone for the year.  Matt Holiday has been hurt.  Jon Jay is hurt.  They keep getting injured, and are still producing.  Their pitching staff hasn’t fallen off since losing Adam Wainwright.  All their starters are above .500, win-loss wise.  The ERAs are in check.  They’re definitely getting help, as St. Louis’ offense is first in the NL Central.

While the NL Central is tough, there’s no reason why the Cardinals will dip in production.  They’re too talented, and don’t forget, they’re playing like this, injured.

“Wait, you’re here?” Category:

  • Pittsburgh Pirates
  • Minnesota Twins
  • New York Mets
  • Arizona Diamondbacks
  • Houston Astros
  • Baltimore Orioles

The Twins and Diamondbacks, my local (Twins) and my favorite (Diamondbacks) team (thought I’d make that clear), were the two teams I thought would be terrible this season.  I joked at school before the season “Who’d be the first team to win 70 games?”.  Or, “Will the Twins win 70 games?”, just to piss my friends off.

Technically, we were both wrong, because I got equal amount of crap about the Diamondbacks.  We were both wrong because, well, each team will win 70 games, eventually.  Both teams are doing much better than expected.  Insanely better than expected.

Even though the Twins are five games back in the AL Central, they’re tied for the 3rd best record in the AL.  It only shows you how good Kansas City and their (Twins and Royals) division is.

Look, I’ve finally realized that this team is good.  They aren’t great, but they’re good.  I kept driving the fluke thing before I gave up.

There’s a lot of good things going on with this team, but nothing really explains it.  Their stats aren’t that great.  It’s amazing that this team is doing this well, because there ain’t a lot that can explain it.  Their prospects that they’ve called up aren’t making immediate impacts like others around the league (though they’ve been very fun to watch and are exciting).

Is it luck?  Luck’s a bad term overall, though if there is a sport to use the word in, it’s baseball.  Why?  Because in baseball, we have stats and other things that explain stuff to us.  Those can usually tell you what’s up.  With the Twins, that’s not telling us much.  In other sports, (hockey, really.  Other sports don’t really have advanced stats, yet.) the advanced analytics don’t tell us nearly as much as they do in baseball.  Other sports take chemistry.  Baseball is individual.  One bad performance by one guy can swing a game, or even a season.

But there isn’t a swingman, good or bad, on the Twins.  There’s nothing that explains it.  And that’s why they’re taking everyone by storm.

Quick hits on this category:

  • I’ve ignored the Orioles most of this year because I find them very boring.  Well, it’s probably time to start paying attention to them.
  • The Pirates have won 50 games, and like the Cardinals, have battled through injuries.  The run they’ve gone on has been incredible.  This is a team that’ll become more fun soon.
  • I’ve talked about the Mets, but I really didn’t think they’d be this good.  I thought the offense would struggle too much… Which is starting to come true.
  • The Astros have surprised everyone this season.  Don’t deny your prediction.

All stats are current through Wednesday’s games.

Did The NHL’s Awards Go To The Right People?


This column is primarily focused on the NHL awards, but since the Draft provided us some trades, I’ll cover those too.  Also, even though I didn’t cover the Draft (due to lack of knowledge), I have a couple thoughts on the top prospects.  Oh yeah, we’ll touch on the latest signings too.

Let’s hit the podium first:

Hart Trophy (MVP): Carey Price

I’ve typically been in the “We need to separate goalies from the rest of the players.” group, but Carey Price’s season was so ridiculous, I let off that gas.  Price led the league in wins (44), save percentage (93%), and GAA (1.96).  64% of the time, Price’s starts were considered quality.

Usually, I’d be against a goalie winning MVP.  It’s kinda the same argument with pitchers in baseball (though pitchers and goalies each have their own award).  However, if you don’t have a goalie, your defense faces pressure, and your offense has to score, a lot.  Just ask the Wild.

Norris Trophy (Best defensemen): Erik Karlsson

Perhaps the most impressive stat for Erik Karlsson this year was his PGA.  The abbreviation is a little confusing.  PGA is simply how many power play goals were scored when that player was on the ice.  Karlsson played in all 82 games, and in those games, there were only six power plays goals scored against him and his team.  Trust me, he’s a big part of that.

His +/- was a +7, only increasing his value.  This was finally his season.  I’m expecting even bigger things next year.

Vezina Trophy (Best goalie): Carey Price

I already covered this above.

Calder Trophy (Best rookie): Aaron Ekblad

My first problem with this award was that Filip Forsberg wasn’t even nominated.

If anything, I thought it should have been Forsberg in Ekblad’s spot.  Forsberg’s +/- was an insane 15, while Ekblad’s was a very good 12.  However, Ekblad’s point shares barely beat out Forsberg.

Though, did Ekblad’s team make the playoffs?  Did Ekblad’s team dominate the conference for a good portion of the season?  Didn’t think so!

Among the other nominees, I thought that there were better options.  Johnny Gaudreau was insane all year on that very young Calgary team (more on them later).  Mark Stone helped the Senators make the playoffs after a disastrous first half of the season.  Maybe I’m relying on winning too much.  But, there were guys who meant more to their team.  Guys who made an impact.

Selke Trophy (Best defensive forward): Patrice Bergeron

I guess I was a little surprised by this one.  Bergeron continues to preform, but this season was a rougher one for him and his team.  First, the PGA was really high, at 17.  While that’s not all his fault, it’s definitely not a good stat to have under your belt.  Bergeron’s +/- dropped to a 2, compared to a 38 last year.  I thought one of the finalists, Anze Kopitar, deserved this award.

Jack Adams Award (Best coach): Bob Hartley

There wasn’t any other option for me.  Peter Laviolette in Nashville was a very deserving nominee, but what Bob Hartley did with Calgary was stunning and surprising.  No one saw that young Calgary team in the playoffs, let alone winning a series.  Perhaps the youth helped them, since they played with a tempo that murdered Vancouver in the first round.  Hartley got these guys to play above their potential.

GM Of The Year: Steve Yzerman (Tampa Bay)

This might be a silly award, but what Steve Yzerman has done with this team has been outstanding.  First, getting them to the Stanley Cup was a shocker, for me at least.  Secondly, the pickups that this team has made under his management have been great.  Tyler Johnson went undrafted.  Tampa Bay found him and developed him to the point where, well.  Just take a look at those post-season stats.

It was the way this team was built that got them to the Cup.  A great goalie, an insane offense, and a defense that, in the postseason, stepped up.

Quick Hits:

We had a lot of trades during the Draft, which I didn’t cover due to lack of knowledge.  However, I do have thoughts on the top two picks.

  • I’ll start with trades.  Boston started cleaning house by sending Carl Soderberg to Colorado, where he ended up signing a lucrative deal.  The Avalanche need a bit more development and leadership, but Soderberg was a great pick up.
  • Dougie Hamilton got sent to the Flames, which gives them even more youth.  That was the one move by Boston I didn’t like.
  • Milan Lucic got traded to the Kings… which, ugh, those Kings.  I hate them so much.  But hey!  They finally got someone who’s better on offense than defense!
  • Goalie trades!  Wow!  Eddie Lack to Carolina.  Antti Niemi (who’s name, even as a Sharks fan, I could never pronounce) to Dallas.  Anton Khubobin to Anaheim.
  • The Rangers traded Carl Hagelin and Cam Talbot during the Draft.  We knew Talbot was getting moved, and Edmonton had the best offer.  Talbot was amazing when Henrik Lundqvist was out.
  • Yeah, Hagelin was really good, and super fast, but it got to the point where he didn’t seem needed.  The Rangers were plenty deep, and he was playing 3rd line for New York.  He only makes Anaheim faster.
  • The Zac Rinaldo trade was comical by Boston.
  • After trading Niemi, the Sharks got Martin Jones, who was traded from the Kings to Boston in the Lucic deal.  Really like what Boston has gotten back on their trades so far.
  • Sharks GM Doug Wilson said they’re making more moves…. maybe with bigger names.
  • I was, of course, on a bike ride when the Brandon Saad trade went down.  I was shocked, as everyone was.
  • Look, we knew Chicago was gonna lose guys this Summer, but the one guy they weren’t supposed to lose was Saad, and if it meant trading Patrick Sharp, they would’ve.
  • The problem was that Saad wanted more than Chicago could afford even with trading Sharp.
  • I don’t blame him for asking that.  It’s just a matter of situation, and we knew this was coming with Chicago.
  • Columbus can give him that money.  They’ll do it… Give them some leadership.
  • He’s restricted, though.  So there will be teams tapping out if the price on him rises.
  • I wish that Chicago could have gotten back more on the return.  One friend I talked to wanted more picks, rather than players.  Then again, the players they got don’t cost much on the cap.
  • It was a Saad day in Chicago, and for Blackhawks fans everywhere.
  • Connor McDavid and Jack Eichel went No.1 and No.2 in the Draft.  No surprise.
  • I have no doubt that McDavid will be a star.  The kid has so much talent at such a younger age.
  • Eichel won’t be a McDavid-level star, but he’ll be very good.
  • McDavid is a generational talent.  We haven’t been able to say that since Sidney Crosby.
  • Also, congrats to Jack Becker.  He graduated Mahtomedi High School, which is 10 minutes from my house and a big rival of my high school.  Was drafted by the Bruins at No.195 overall.
  • Detroit knows that their stars don’t have a ton of playing time left.  They took care of that today.
  • Mike Green, who was, in my opinion, the best free agent out there, was signed to a three year, $18 million contract with Detroit today.
  • The move is perfect.  They have offense, and Green gives them that blue-line presence they need.
  • It’ll be interesting to see how Brad Richards plays this upcoming season.  It’s a one year deal for him in Detroit.  Might be his last contract.
  • Then the Phil Kessel trade happened.  Man, I really didn’t think this was coming after they hired Mike Babcock.
  • For Pittsburgh, they wanted more talent to avoid what happened this past season.
  • They now have three of the top 13 highest payed players in the league.
  • That return Toronto got… WOW.
  • The returns everyone has gotten in trades have been great.
  • Boston signed Matt Beleskey.  It’s risky, but a necessary move for a re-builidng Boston team.