Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
December 17, 2002
BASEBALL: Caveat Emptor

Not sure I exactly understand this Russ Ortiz for Damain Moss deal, other than that it appears to be driven by the Giants dumping salary. The two pitchers are not terribly different in quality; Ortiz has more experience and is more of a known quantity, Moss is lefthanded and if healthy has a bigger upside. There are signs for concern: Ortiz' K rate was way down this year, while Moss gave up too many walks and home runs to sustain an ERA in the mid-threes unless he shows improvement. But both are basically guys who are likely to be productive pitchers but could go either way in any given season.

IF healthy, I say of Moss. The health and performance record of pitchers traded away or let go by the Braves is pretty grim - Neagle, Avery, Mercker, Lilliquist, Jason Schmidt, John Burkett, Bielecki (twice), Terrell Wade, Clontz, Chen, Pete Smith, Rocker, Russ Springer, Andy Ashby . . . it's not an unbroken record; Chen pitched OK for the rest of the year before coming unglued, while Schmidt and Lilliquist recovered to become useful pitchers after initial struggles. Paul Byrd and Odalis Perez became All-Stars, and Mike Stanton's done just fine. And a few of those guys (particularly if you include Mark Wohlers) started struggling before they left Atlanta. Still, the overall picture very strongly suggests a team you shouldn't deal with for pitching.

(See, I nearly made it all the way through the post without slamming the T__ G______ signing).

Posted by Baseball Crank at 07:15 PM | Baseball 2002-03 | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
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