BP-fest here of late (which is freeee today!), but Jason has posted the latest episode of our podcast. This week we spoke to Todd Zola of Mastersball.com centering our conversation on player valuation and some of the best ways to approach the process. It was a very good discussion. Additionally we discussed the three-way trade between Seattle-Oakland-Washington, Mike Napoli‘s contract finally getting done, and Matt Harrison‘s extension. We read some emails and discussed some favorite reads catching up after missing that segment for a few weeks. Stupidly, I forgot to include the Rafael Soriano signing. It’s probably because I was too focused on trying to make Manti Te’o girlfriend jokes so here are my thoughts on the signing:
I love it for Washington. It’s costly, sure, but they’re in win-now mode. Soriano now gives the Nats a ridiculous three-headed monster that they can use to shorten games to six innings on many nights. Soriano joins Tyler Clippard and Drew Storen to form the lockdown triumvirate (not to mention Craig Stammen kicking butt in his first full season as a reliever) with Soriano likely getting the first crack at the closer’s job if for no other reason than his salary. Not that he isn’t every bit as capable as the other two.
The last time Soriano was in the National League, he posted a 33 percent strikeout rate in a career-high 75.3 innings adding 27 saves as well. Craig Kimbrel (50 percent in 2012) and Aroldis Chapman (44 percent) think fanning just a third of the batters you face is cute, but for a mere mortal it is fantastic. Known as injury prone, health has eluded Soriano a bit over his entire career, but he has been a 60+ inning pitcher in three of the last four years and five of seven so he seems to have outrun the legitimacy of that tag in his late-20s and early-30s.
Sorry to those with Storen in keeper leagues. Clippard and Storen will be among the more expensive middle relievers in NL-only/deep mixed leagues and they will deliver plenty of value even if they only end up with a save or two all year. Meanwhile back on Soriano’s former team, David Robertson‘s value ticks upward again as the incumbent behind a now 43-year old Mariano Rivera returning from a torn ACL.
As for the articles referenced:
- Soccer-style Baseball Jerseys by M.Willis
- Craig Robinson’s Infograpic on the Blue Jays Draft
- Bernie Pleskoff on Robbie Erlin
- Bill James IQ App