If there’s ever a time when we can dream on trades, it’s now in the middle of November. There isn’t a ton of exciting news, but the GM Meetings are going on, so we can let our imaginations run wild. Yesterday, there was a fair amount of trade-proposal fodder. Let’s start with the biggest potential prize (and a personal favorite): Cole Hamels. *Author’s note: The Hamels portion of the show ran a little long, so we’re going to break this up with other players later*
Ken Rosenthal floated the idea out there yesterday:
Would the Phillies, for example, take left-hander Manny Banuelos or righty Dellin Betances plus shortstop Eduardo Nunez for Hamels? They certainly would be tempted.
Would the Yankees make such a deal? Not necessarily, considering that they would get Hamels at a high salary for only one year — and generally do not sign players to extensions before they reach free agency.
Um, Ken, are you sure about that one? I’m pretty sure the Yankees would do that as quickly as possible. Hell, if I were in charge, I’d say yes and volunteer to bring one of the B’s and Nunez to Philadelphia in a rickshaw. That package seems pretty small, especially compared to the projected one. To find a little balance, let’s run Hamels through the trade value calculator and see what we come up with. Using fWAR and contract data from Cot’s, I came up with a $35.4M of value, but that’s without a projection for 2012 or the value of free agent compensation. Adding both his projected salary of $14M, a conservative estimate of 4.0 fWAR, and the value of Type-A picks, we get $44.8M. To get an idea of what that means, we’ll borrow from here and here to see where the picks match up.
If we do Banuelos or Betances + Nunez, we don’t end up with nearly enough value. If we do the package from ESPN/BP, we come much closer. Assuming that Mason Williams makes it into the top 100 prospects for next year, here’s what we end up with:
Banuelos ($14.2) + Hector Noesi ($6.5) + Austin Romine ($11.1) + Williams ($11.1) = $42.9, which is pretty damn close to the TVC’s estimated value for Hamels. There’s no difference in value if we swap out Banuelos for Dellin Betances (but we should note that Betances’ value is probably down after last year).
In theory, the Yankees and Phillies match up for a trade. The Yankees (and every other team) could use a pitcher like Hamels, and the Phillies could use an infusion of young pitching with upside (Banuelos), proximity to the Majors and a solid floor (Noesi), as well as a hitter with a decent floor (Romine), and a young bat with great talent (Williams). That package definitely feels like a lot to give up, but if you want a pitcher of Hamels’ caliber, you’re going to have to give something up. Hamels is a young lefty who misses bats and generates groundballs. That sounds like a perfect fit for the Yankees. While it might hurt to part with those guys for just one guaranteed season of Hamels, I think I might pull the trigger on that deal (though I won’t hold my breath on Hamels being made available this Hot Stove Season).
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