Saturday, July 31, 2010

Deadline day thread

Updated at 4:23 p.m.

It's July 31 at last, and the final hours leading up to the magic 4 p.m. trade deadline are sure to be hectic as always as teams make last-ditch attempts to pull off a blockbuster.

Quite often, these deals don't happen until the very last minute. A year ago, the Nationals were in Pittsburgh on deadline day, with players sitting around the clubhouse watching MLB Network to find out what was going on. When the clock struck 4 p.m., Nick Johnson left the clubhouse and went down to the batting cage to take some hacks, assuming no news was good news. A couple minutes later, Johnson learned he'd actually been traded to the Marlins right at the deadline; it just took several minutes for the word to actually get to him.

So don't be surprised if something dramatic happens in those last few moments later this afternoon.

For now, here's what we know...

Adam Dunn, of course, still remains a National. The list of potential suitors appears to have dwindled after the Yankees acquired Lance Berkman and the Rays acquired reliever Chad Qualls (using up some of the little money they have to spend right now).

The White Sox still are the team that most covets Dunn, but it's going to take a change-of-heart from GM Kenny Williams -- who up til now has been unwilling to part with major-league position players like Gordon Beckham, Carlos Quentin and Dayan Viciedo -- in these final hours for something to get done.

Could another team swoop in and make Mike Rizzo an offer he can't refuse? Sure. But again, that offer would have to include big-time talent (I believe both a major-league-ready position player and a pitcher).

There's also a reasonable chance Rizzo could strike a deal with one of his lesser, role players before 4 p.m. Perhaps someone out there is willing to give up a low-level prospect for Willie Harris or Adam Kennedy. Perhaps someone really wants Livan Hernandez, though at this point Rizzo might be more inclined to keep the veteran right-hander because he looks like he could return in 2011.

I'll be sure to pass on any pertinent updates throughout the afternoon, so check back here for that. Until then, two other important items to share...

-- John Lannan will indeed be recalled from Class AA Harrisburg to start tomorrow's series finale against the Phillies. Several of you subscribers noticed I included Lannan's name in my emailed series preview yesterday; with all the trade talk, I completely forgot to post the news on here.

-- Many of you have asked about the status of Yuneski Maya, the Cuban right-hander who agreed to terms on a contract last week. Well, I've been told Maya has been granted his visa and has traveled to Washington. I expect a formal announcement of his signing will come in the very near future, perhaps as soon as today.

More trade updates coming later this afternoon...

2:43 P.M. -- Just got to the ballpark, and the biggest news to report is that Adam Dunn is in the Nationals' starting lineup. That doesn't necessarily mean he still can't be traded before 4 p.m., just means he's still on the team as of this moment.

The rest of the lineup, for those interested...

CF Morgan
2B Kennedy
3B Zimmerman
1B Dunn
LF Willingham
RF Bernadina
C Rodriguez
SS Desmond
P Detwiler

4:23 p.m. -- If you haven't heard already, the deadline passed and Dunn was not traded. Check the homepage for the full story. Also check the homepage for news on Stephen Strasburg's throwing schedule.


SteveRep44 said...

The Nats already have a well-defined list of positions that are of high priority for their off-season attention (2B, RF, C after '11). Those could be addressed w/ someone already here or in the system; via trade or an FA signing.

Maybe Ramos is the down-the-road answer at catcher.

Trading Dunn adds 1B to that list.

I'd rather secure that one with AD and concentrate on the others.

Andrew said...

Gordon Beckham's sophomore season hasn't been great. He is barely sniffing a .300 OBP which is horrible for a powerless 2nd baseman. He will end up with around 15 errors this season too on the defense.

That may satisfy some Nats fans but I ain't buying it. The Nats need a 2nd baseman and didn't pull the trigger on Orlando Hudson. Just another case with the Nats taking 2nd or 3rd best.

They need big compensation for Dunn or hold out to re-sign Dunn or play the Free Agent arbitration route or worst case get your Type A compensation picks which will probably yield better prospects in the long run!

Doc said...

Good for John Lannan starting Sunday. But I would have preferred to see Batista get another shot. The Nats are on a bit of a roll right now, and Batista deserves to be part of it. Lannan hasn't really impressed anyone in his minor league stint.

Anonymous said...

So where can one find a list of power-hitting 1st basemen who will be free agents after this year?

I understand that Rizzo wants a lot in return for Dunn because the Nats would get 2 draft picks if Dunn re-signs elsewhere in the offseason. But, if we trade Dunn or don't re-sign Dunn, we still need a 1st Basemen...hopefully someone with power. So, who's available this offseason?

Anonymous said...

Here you go Anon 12:03:

Anonymous said...

I meant Anon 12:08. Sorry. But it looks like Dunn and Carlos Pena are the only two good power options.

Anonymous said...

A fantastic deal could change my mind but I hope they keep Dunn. His power protects Zimm from being pitched around every game.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Natsone. I'd like them to keep Dunn and sign him to a 3-year deal. With a thin free agent class and no power prospects in our system, just seems like a no-brainer to extend Dunn. Then, Rizzo can spend the offseason filling other holes - pitching, 2nd base, center, right.

Anonymous said...

The Nats already have a well-defined list of positions that are of high priority for their off-season attention (2B, RF, C after '11).

2B : Kennedy/Gonzalez->Espinosa/Desmond.
SS: Desmond/Espinosa possibly Hague
C: Rodriguez/Ramos -> Norris/Freitas
LF/CF/RF: Willingham/Morgan/Bernadina/Morse -> Perez/Hood/Burgess/Ramirez
1B: Dunn->Bloxom

I still agree with Rizzo its still starting frontline top-of-the-rotation pitching that is missing. Other than Strasburg WHO?????? WHO????
Lots of maybes ... another in Yunieski Maya. They've covered the catching position NOW they need top-of-the-rotation starting pitching
other than what basically amounts to two rookies in Strasburg and Zimmermann.

greg said...

andrew, i call shenanigans on your bashing of beckham.

yes, he had a sophomore slump to start this season. he was awful for a couple of months. but did you bother to look at the whole picture? great rookie season, considered a top prospect coming in, and look at his july numbers as he comes out of that sophomore slump.

372 avg
395 obp
603 slg
998 ops

sorry, i think you're on a very short list of people who think he's not all that and a bag of chips.

i'd love to see them keep dunn, but if they can get beckham, they have to do it. young, controlled, good bat at a MI position, average defense.

Anonymous said...

In other news Chelsea Clinton is getting married. Adam Dunn was invited but Jim Riggleman had that little chat with him about visiting Bob Uecker during the game ... so no dice for the big Dunn-K. He's on everyone's AAA list dontcha know?

Anonymous said...

andrew, i call shenanigans on your bashing of beckham.

Agree wholeheartedly and completely with Greg. Typical fan looking at home run stats and their ilk? No, Beckham is not another Adam Dunn but he could actually be, perhaps even probably be, another Ryan Zimmerman who could play shortstop or second base. I think that qualifies as value-for-value. Two Zimmerman like players shoring up the infield seems alright by me.

Andrew said...

People, get Orlando Hudson in 2011 and you have a better 2nd baseman then Beckham may ever be. Sorry, Beckham is not all that and a good July only skews how bad his numbers were up until July.

This game is about stats. I don't care what he did last year, what has he done for me lately?

Keep DUNN and worse case take the 2 Draft Picks!

Dunn right now is the best player on the shelf along with Prince Fielder. Hold out, just like Rizzo did with Matt Capps.

Dunn-Key-oteeee said...

What's for lunch anyway? 6'6 Dunn-K's need lots of feed.

Gus in FFX said...

While we are waiting, was wondering whether
Peralta has ever been connected with any PED's in his past? Given number of minor league Nat's busted this year, I question whether Peralta at age of 34 has suddenly come of age via PED's with the flashy bicep he's intent on showing off whenever on the mound. I guess the real question is what is his pedigree? He seems quite impressive based on AAA results this year and brief stint with Nats to date.

However, when scanning his history, I get stuff like "For the last two seasons, Peralta has been nearly abysmal. ERAs of 5.98 and 6.20 in 2008 and 2009, playing a total of 67 games in both seasons combined. Peralta will likely play the majority of the season in AAA. Don't expect him to be called up unless in an emergency. Peralta's 2009 stats: 27 games, 0-3 record, 6.20 ERA, WHIP of 1.58."

Did he learn a new pitch at 34? I haven't heard or read a story regarding why his career suddenly took of this year.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, Beckham is not all that and a good July only skews how bad his numbers were up until July.

Sorry the stats and scouting reports don't back you up on this?

Gordon Beckham all of age 22: .270/.347/.808 with 14 HR, 28 2B, 1 3B
41 walks against 65 K's in [378 at bats]. 4th or 5th in range at second base. WAR 0.9.

Xtrapolating to match the # of at bats Zimm got at age 22: 28 HR, 52 2B, 2 3B.

Ryan Zimmerman all of age 22: .266/.330/.788 with 24 HR, 43 2B, and 5 3B in [653 at bats]. 2007 2nd in errors committed at 3rd base. UZR first at third base. WAR 3.1. Right now he is at 3.2.

HHover said...

Gus in FFX - his number of innings pitched is so small I don't think the numbers really tell us much--or at least, they could easily tell us as much about his luck as anything else. (But if I were to try to explain it, I don't think I'd start off by insinuating PED use--that's a pretty inflammatory thing to throw out there).

Brian G. said...

Here's my hope: Rizzo is holding out for a queen's ransom and, if he doesn't get it this afteroon, then tomorrow the Nats offer Dunn a 3-year deal, possibly with a club option on year #4. Dunn may want to wait and see what the market looks this off-season, but at least Rizzo would have reached out to Dunn instead of continuing to leave him hanging like he's done all season.

greg said...

a) hudson isn't anything special offensively
b) his numbers will only go down, he's on the downside of his career (as opposed to beckham's, which will get better)
c) he's getting kinda injury prone at this point in his career.

seriously, if you think orlando hudson is a better fit for this team going forward, i'm not sure what i could say that would convince you otherwise. that just doesn't make any sense at all.

Anonymous8 said...

Kilgore was nice enough to do a DUNN POLL

Gus in FFX said...


I'm searching for a explanation. Peralta has thrown over 50 innings between AAA and majors and has sub 2.0 ERA and continues to impress. There could be many explanations for such a turnaround at age of pitch, new velocity, new attitude, new strength/training regime. I'm curious. Don't get me wrong, I'm very pleased to see this type of performance and am routing for him. At the same time, given the history of the game over past decade and more specifically the number of Nat's in minors who have been suspended, I am curious to learn more and don't know much about him, his story or his previous history.

"Peralta went 2-0 with 20 saves (no blown saves) and a 1.08 ERA in 28 appearances with the Chiefs. The 34-year-old posted a 5.4/1 strikeout-to-walk ratio (38 K/7 BB) and 10.3 strikeouts per 9.0 innings in 33.1 innings pitched. Peralta's 20 saves rank second in the International League, and his 1.08 ERA is third-lowest among pitchers who have logged at least 30.0 innings.

Peralta is 4-11 with two saves, 31 holds and a 4.61 ERA in 221 appearances during five big-league seasons with Los Angeles-AL, Kansas City and Colorado."

HHover said...

If you look at his stats, it's been a long time since he had that much trouble with AAA hitters. And if you look at his fangraphs page, you'll see that luck indeed seems to play a factor in his MLB #s this year--his BABIP this year is .222, vs. .292 career (and .335 last year), and his xFIP is 4.09.

Anonymous8 said...

Beckham bashing is all over the internet this year. Ben Grieve, Travis Lee, Austin Kearns all come to mind about position players that had great Rookie years and sophomore slumps and become others problems.

What happened to the sweet swinging Beckham that had him looking so lost at the plate for most of this season? Can he be that .380 OBP guy that can be a difference maker going forward?

I like sure things and Beckham is far from a sure thing. .306 over the last 10 games. Heck, Adam Kennedy is 11 for 25 batting .440 over the last 10 games.

Anonymous said...

Did he learn a new pitch at 34? I haven't heard or read a story regarding why his career suddenly took of this year.

In fact there was indeed a story on him. He did in fact "learn a new pitch". In winter ball he learned to lead with his off speed pitches ... learned to get them in as strikes and follow with the fast ball. He now mixes and matches throwing the hitters off. He still is one of the leaders in Syracuse having accumulated 20 saves and around a 1.08 ERA and a 0.98 WHIP. Is that good enough for you? It should be ... he was doing a good job of keeping up with Capps save total until he was called up from AAA.

Yes, he might just be better than Capps believe it or not.

Anonymous said...

@Gus in FFX,

Here's your story dude:

Steveospeak said...

I hope the Nats move Dunn. I love the guy, but resigning him doesn't make this team any better, and getting two draft picks is the 3rd worst scenario.

Even if they resign Dunn and sign Cliff Lee (never going to happen) does this team compete for a ring in the next couple of years? I would have to go with no.

Getting Ramos was great, now trade Dunn for a couple other good prospects to build for a future. If they resign Dunn in the offseason great if not, sign another stopgap 1B (unless they get one back in the deal).

Not trading players like Cordero, Guzman, Dimitri Young at their highest value is part of the reason why the Nats still are as bad as they are (you could probably add not dealing Soriano as well, J-Zimm is great but we probably could have gotten him 3 picks later with our own 2nd rounder). No they would have brought a truck load of young talent, but they probably would have netted a couple young guys helping the Nats right now.

Anonymous said...

Even if they resign Dunn and sign Cliff Lee (never going to happen) does this team compete for a ring in the next couple of years? I would have to go with no.

If Yunieski Maya pans out as the next younger version of Livan Hernandez? And Cliff Lee? Strasburg doesn't have a "sophomore slump"? Zimmermann can manage as a #4 behind Stras, Maya, and Lee? Then you have a choice between Olsen, Detwiler, Marquis, et al?

Hell yeah they compete next year and the year after ... if they get rid of double-switch Riggleman ... who has hurt the team with by favoring players like Guzman, Harris and Maxwell as much as missing front-line pitching has. Make Foli or McCatty the manager ... sheesh.

sjm105 said...

Doubt if we can get Beckham but its a no brainer between he and O Dog. Hudson has played in only 80 games this year, been on the DL, he is 33 and on the downhill side of what he was. Beckham is 23 and can only get better. I agree that fans of Hudson won't be swayed but there is no way he would have helped us this year with his injuries.

sign Dunn and lets get moving on more starting pitching

Brian G. said...

Thought I'd share this -- footage of Capps' save last night in Minnesota:

Gus in FFX said...

Anon and HHover - thanks for additional background and link to Post article. Given the 2 explanations, luck vs. new pitching sequence cited by AK, I would tend to go with the BABIP/luck analysis, unfortunately. Either way, would be nice if Rizzo could find a way to trade him for a prospect based on current year "luck" performance.

Anonymous said...

sign Dunn and lets get moving on more starting pitching

Agree that this is the right approach. Sign Yunieski, Yunesky?, Dunn and then Cliff Lee.

Find out if Espinosa is ready, trade Marerro for prospects and let's move on.

Mark said...

When Beckham's numbers dropped last year and most of this year is it a case of the pitcher's finally figured him out or were the scouts right last year that he has a great swing. Which is it?

He has one more year before he is arbitration eligible. If the White Sox trade him then even they doubt his future.

And I agree that a sure bet in baseballl doesn't exist.

Souldrummer said...

@BrianG. Good look
"Welcome aboard Matt Capps! You're in a pennant race."
Matt Capps doing fine work for the Senators of Killebrew.

Anonymous said...

@BrianG. Good look
"Welcome aboard Matt Capps! You're in a pennant race."
Matt Capps doing fine work for the Senators of Killebrew, Oliva and Carew

But The Wookie is none too happy about it ... ;)

Baseball still owes this franchise for the shameful way the Expo's were rifled and depleted by every major market team in the league. For the shameful way the Senator's expansion franchise was stolen away to Texas after the hallmark of disastrous trades: McClain for A Rodriguez, Brinkman and Coleman. And then there's the Griffith family ... who the Minnesotan's were smart enough to rid themselves of as quickly as possible ...

Baseball owes, Rizzo should make them pay, and pay, and pay, and pay some more.

Mark said...

Greg - you can come on here and spin stats to make anyone look good including Justin Maxwell.

Andrew was not bashing Beckham as you claim just speaking the facts as they are today. Greg, you are spinning.

You give mediocre July stats and then are shown the burn of the day. In the last 10 games Kennedy, yes Adam Kennedy, is batting .440 to Beckhams .306.

Your opinion has not swayed me at all.

phil dunn said...

XM Radio is reporting that it now looks like an Adam Dunn trade will happen in the next half hour, probably with the White Sox and probably including Jackson. Score another one for the cheap Lerners.

Brian G. said...

If he's not traded, he should get a rousing ovation tonight...

Anonymous said...


Without Beckham in the deal, I would not make it for just Jackson. Jackson and Beckham for Dumm I would consider.

Anonymous said...

periculum, when are you going to learn the difference between a question mark and an exclamation point?

Anonymous said...

periculum, when are you going to learn the difference between a question mark and an exclamation point?

I'm from Texas.

Arlington Big Fish said...

Rizzo says Ramos is a major-league ready catcher. Then why are we waiting? Bye-bye, Wil Nieves. Nice guy, but an OPS lower than most pitchers.

Anonymous said...

Without Beckham in the deal, I would not make it for just Jackson. Jackson and Beckham for Dumm I would consider.

Agree. But just consider it ... still might not do it.

Suicide Squeeze said...

Jason A. Churchill -- MLB Draft Blog/Rumor Central: Exec tells us Dunn is staying in Washington, the Nats want more than TB or CWS are willing to give up.

Bzl. said...

Adam Kilgore is reporting he's not traded (as of 4:03)

Anonymous said...

"I'm from Texas."

Having lived in Texas, I can say that explains everything.

greg said...


a) you're talking about 10 days (24 ABs) for kennedy and comparing that to 30 days (78 ABs) for beckham. i daresay my stats bear a little more weight. because there's a little more data.
b) in what world is a 998 OPS a mediocre stat? in what world is a 395 OBP mediocre?
c) when was this "drop" in his numbers at the end of last year? 928 OPS in sept, pretty good finish to the season. yes, he was uneven in his rookie season. oddly enough, that's what happens to rookies. perhaps you think heywood's 523 OPS in june is an indicator that he's not all that good. young kids do that, they slump. they recover. it's a little earlyk to declare beckham a bust.
d) beckham is 23 and in his second year in the majors. he's young and learning on the job. most 23 yr olds are still in A or AA.
e) i must have missed the month that maxwell played 80ish ABs and had an OPS around 1000 so i could have spun that to make him look good.

i'm not saying beckham is a sure thing, but he *does* have upside. hudson has zero upside, only downside (not to mention easily 10X the financial cost and years of team control). for a team in building mode, why would you advocate signing a 33 yr old on the downhill slide instead of a 23 yr old with lots of upside?

and the sox DON'T want to trade him (note that he's who the nats were asking for, not who the sox were offering). that's because they don't believe he's the april/may guy, they think he's closer to the july guy. an 800-850 OPS guy who'll play decent defense at 2B and who is capable of playing 3B (which he did last season).

i'm not spinning *anything*. i'm just echoing what most talent evaluators are saying: he's a good player who had a struggle adjusting early this year.

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