ken rosenthal's latest column shoots down my trade musing from yesterday morning, viz. isringhausen to the dodgers. for one thing, rosenthal says, the chances of an isringhausen trade are remote: "Isringhausen, who turns 35 on Sept. 7, might require a team to exercise his $8 million option to waive his no-trade protection. Many clubs would balk, given Isringhausen's history of injuries." for another thing, the dodgers are no longer looking for relievers --- after a rash of injuries in their rotation (brad penny is the latest to go out, with a groin injury), they need starters. looper? well, maybe they'd take him, but i wouldn't expect them (or any team) to give up much. after last night's win, loop has an era of 4.85 and an era+ of 83; mike maroth had an era of 5.06 (in the dh league) and an era+ of 87 when the cardinals traded for him --- and the cards gave up nothing more than a PTBNL. both players are under club control for one more year, so they're pretty comparable, right? not so fast:
(thru jun 18)
looper is definitely a more attractive trade chip than maroth. in fact, having looked at his numbers, i now wonder if the cardinals can even afford to trade him. he has ably filled the suppan role, and done it for cheap --- a league-averageish starter making below-market money is a valuable player, no? particularly on a team that's desperate for stability in its rotation. unless jocketty can convince some team to give up a high-ceiling prospect for him at the deadline (unlikely), i think they should hold on to him.
oh, but wait. it says here that tony's thinking of moving looper back to the bullpen next season (???). . . . .
. . . . which also means, apparently, that tony's still thinking of managing the team next year.
changing subjects: last week i lodged a request with the palm beach club to interview standout minor-league pitcher pj walters --- whereupon he promptly got called up to double A, his second promotion this year. this morning's post-dispatch has a profile about walters by derrick goold; not a hard thrower, despite the gaudy strikeout numbers, but he throws all his pitches for strikes and isn't afraid to challenge hitters. double A will be a big test; he got knocked around a bit in his debut for springfield the other night, but he'll have another half-dozen starts before the schedule runs out --- and springfield's already in the playoffs, which might add another start or three to walters' workload.
as long as we're talking minor leagues, erik summed up the early returns on the 2007 draft class yesterday. good reading. one guy he left off the list is antonio dejesus, the slap-hitting centerfielder out of kentucky (16th round). this guy debuted at batavia and posted a .407 on-base percentage despite batting .186 --- that's what 14 walks in 73 plate appearances will do for ya. they bumped him up to quad cities two weeks ago and inserted him into the leadoff slot; he's batting .300 and still drawing walks like crazy (9 in 49 p.a.). now here's the bad news: this guy has only 1 extra-base hit (a double) in 99 professional at-bats. i reckon the guy must be fast, but he only has 5 steals; if it were more like 15 steals, i might actually be excited about him. he's probably not a big-leaguer, but i find him pretty fascinating as a novelty player --- he's got as many walks as base hits this year. his line is a freakish .232 / .421 / .242. maybe it's just a matter of adjusting to wooden bats; maybe he simply goes up there looking to foul pitches off until they walk him. maybe he's eddie gaedel. . . . . he had a typical night last night --- 1 basehit (a single), 4 runs scored.
erik also had a link to this article about arnoldi cruz. more information about that player forthcoming shortly --- i've got a new batch of questions pending with jeff luhnow. also, i'll be attending a SABR presentation today by sig mejdal, whom luhnow hired as the cardinals' "senior quantitative analyst" --- ie, head stat guy. will report out this p.m. if there's anything interesting . . . . .