In case you weren't hanging with the night shift last night, Jeff Passan dropped what can only be called a truly Rubenesque (no, not that kind) rumor. Behold, the Passan scoop:
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p>Source: Phillies strongly pursuing eighth-inning relievers, including Edward Mujica. Believed to be willing to go three years for setup man.</p>— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) <a href="https://twitter.com/JeffPassan/statuses/401218184188932096">November 15, 2013</a></blockquote>
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In case you were having trouble believing your eyes, yes, Jeff Passan is suggesting that Ruben Amaro, Jr, he of the utterly disastrous 2 year, 12 million dollar Mike Adams contract, is thinking of signing another setup man, this time for three years. One hardly knows what to say anymore.
To be fair, Edward Mujica was fairly good last year, with a fairly middling 6.4 K/9, but a sound 2.78 ERA and 3.71 FIP over 64.2 innings. Oh, and he had 37 saves...not as if those are predictive, though. He's apparently looking for a three year, 21 million dollar commitment. And the other names the Phillies have been linked to? Joe Smith and Joaquin Benoit, according to MLB Trade Rumors. Benoit, you may remember, was pretty awful in the playoffs, but quite good in the regular season, with 9+ K/9, and a FIP of 2.87, to match an ERA of 2.01 over 67 innings. And Smith is a fine pitcher in his own right, as well, looking more like Mujica than Benoit, with a 7.71 K/9, and a 2.20/3.60 ERA/FIP balance.
But are any worth a three year deal? With so many young projectable pitchers -- Bastardo, De Fratus, Aumont, etc -- in the fold already? Didn't we hire an analytics guy? What is going on?
I tried to work this out a bit in what follows. Maybe it will help you, too.