Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Blockbuster Jays and Marlins Trade

And with a wave Josh Johnson and the rest of the Marlins hopes for finishing over 50 wins next year disappears into the night! This is just like the years after the Marlins won the World Series - minus of course the World Series. It is just another firesale from a joke of an MLB franchise. Make a big splash by signing Heath Bell, Jose Reyes, and Mark Buehrle last year just to send them off a year later is a joke. I pity those poor Marlins fans. Well the ones they might still have after this trade.

The Marlins ended up giving up Reyes, Mark Buehrle, Josh Johnson, John Buck, Emilio Bonafacio and $4 million for Yunel Escobar, Adeiny Hechavarria, Jeff Mathis, Jake Marisnick, Henderson Alvarez, Justin Nicolino and Anthony DeSclafani. Now that's a blockbuster deal if I have ever seen it. Let's look at this deal from the Toronto Blue Jays perspective first. The get 2 potential All-Stars in Reyes and Johnson. That is, of course, if they can stay healthy. With Toronto's history with injuries to players, don't plan on both of them not missing any time. If healthy, they will make Toronto considerably better. Mark Buehrle will be that solid veteran who'll eat innings that the Jays have desparately needed. He's a vet who will school the young guys on the Jays' pitching staff while being that solid 3-4 guy in rotation.

John Buck will probably back up JPA or Travis D'arnaud in Toronto, but I am fully expecting another deal to happen involving one of those 3 catchers before winter is over. He had an All-Star year here in 2010. I don't expect that, but he will definitely give better offense then Jeff Mathis did. Bonafacio will probably start at 2nd base for the Jays over recent pick up Maicer Izturis, if not split most of his playing time there and being utility around the field. The problems for the Jays with this deal is the history of injuries for Reyes and Johnson, and the amount of cash taken on by the Jays. The $165.95 Million will probably handcuff Alex Anthopoulos from making any more moves unless the owners are finally opening the wallet. Expect that AA will be done adding salary, but look for a deal to get another SP back in a trade with one of the young Jays' catchers heading to another team.

On Miami's part, they do get back some good interesting pieces in Hechavarria and Alvarez who will most likely thrive in a National League environment. Hech is a slick fielding middle infielder who will hit for average and hit 10-15 home runs a year and will be dynamite in that infield for Miami. I project him to be a fringe All-Star down in the National League and put on many a defensive clinic in the Fish Tank. Alvarez is a ground ball pitcher by nature. He's not overwhelming but can get the double play. The National League's style small ball might be more of his calling than the big bats of the American League. Expect him to bounce back this year with something close to 8-12 record and 3.75 ERA. I'd give him better stats, but who knows how bad that Marlins team is going to be this year. Jeff Mathis is a cheap throw in back-up catcher who gives defense and not much else. He calls a good game and can help the young staff in Miami. Handsome Jake Marisnick will be a force in Miami if he can get his swing back to the level it was in High-A ball. He is athletic as balls and if he gets his stuff on right, Marisnick will be an All-Star one day. Nicolino was one of the studs in Toronto's A Ball team of the Lansing Lugnuts along with Noah Syndergaard and Aaron Sanchez. Projected to be a solid pitcher anywhere from a 2-4 guy in a rotation, Nicolino should be solid for the Marlins in a couple years. The hit isn't too big to the Jays considering Syndergaard and Sanchez are both projected to be better than Nicolino. DeSclafani, drafted by Toronto in 2011, had solid numbers in A Ball for Toronto. With a 3.37 ERA and 92 K's to only 25 BB's, I project him to be a 3-4 guy in 3 years - very similar to Nicolino. He'll a solid mid rotation guy if everything works out right.

This deal clearly sends signs to the AL East that Toronto is for real this year. The kiddy gloves have come off after being being 4th in the division behind the Yankees, Orioles, and Rays this year. Watch for a strong push for the Wild Card from the Jays if they stay healthy. Miami on the other hand are in full rebuild mode... again! Expect extreme struggles this year and a high draft pick in 2 drafts from now.

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