After hemming and hawing a little too long, John Middleton realizes all the good GM candidates are either hired or locked up with other teams, and besides, who will move in a pandemic? Enter Doogie10, the desperation move made by a desperate man!
On to the roster!
LUX. TAX SALARY
|3||FA||Jose Quintana||SP3||$8,000,000||$8,000,000||2 yr. $16M|
|5||FA||Ian Nova||SP5||$1,000,000||$1,000,000||1 yr. $1M|
|6||FA||Alex Colome||Cl||$8,000,000||$8,000,000||2 yr. $16M|
|7||FA||Brad Hand||Cl||$9,000,000||$9,000,000||2 yr. $18M|
|10||FA||Keone Kela||RHP||$3,000,000||$3,000,000||1 yr. $3M|
|15||FA||James McCann||C||$12,000,000||$12,000,000||3 yr. $36M|
|18||FA||Andrelton Simmons||SS||$8,000,000||$8,000,000||2 yr. $16M|
|26||FA||Josh Reddick||OF/DH||$3,000,000||$3,000,000||1 yr. $3M|
Notes on the additions:
Most of the salary information comes from Spotrac's site, with estimates for arbitration eligible players. The free agent acquisitions are based on Spotrac's market value estimation, where available; generally I rounded up a little to get to nice even numbers.
JTR is not likely to come back here, as much as it pains me to write that. I believe we should jump quickly on McCann as the replacement. We don't have anyone close to being ready on the farm and the FA Catcher market is thin. It is flat out hard to find a quality backstop on the open market. While we might be able to approach what JTR eventually signs for, I'm afraid we'll still fall short and he won't decide where he signs for several months, by which time any replacement would be off the market. Trading for JTR in the first place is not my mistake to correct (which I'm not necessarily saying it was a mistake), so I don't have to feel like I must back up the Brinks truck to sign him at all costs.
Our rotation is beefed up with Quintana and Nova. Both pitchers have some risk, but good upside. Quintana will require more money and commitment, but he would be a nice addition as a #3 who is also a lefty. I would like to have a lefty in the rotation just to offer different views to teams during the season. Having him as a #3 also bumps Eflin down and removes some pressure and expectations from him. Nova is a nice bounce back candidate who played for $1.5 million last year. He has some good upside and would offer competition for VV and Howard. In this scenario, I would expect Nova to win, send VV to the bullpen, and let Howard get lower pressured reps in AAA.
The bullpen needs a major overhaul, so I spent the most collectively here. I generally believe it is way to risky to invest too much money in veteran relievers (see Robertson, Mike Adams, Papelbon, etc.; bad for different reasons). Colome and Hand are not necessarily the best closers out there, but between those two and Neris, we should be able to lock down the 8th and 9th pretty well. I think Keone Kela is still young enough to be effective also. His year was cut short by injury, so I think he might be a bit more affordable to get important outs in the 7th.
I wanted to upgrade the infield defense, so I went with Simmons at short. He is not quite the defender he used to be, but should still be the best we've had defensively since Galvis. His bat is not great, but still has potential to be useful at the bottom of the order. I moved Kingery to utility. I would give him a short leash, though. I would not hesitate to send him down to AAA to get regular at-bats if he struggles.
In the outfield, I added Josh Reddick for a veteran bat. I have Herrera on the active roster. I believe it is worth seeing if he has any ability to contribute. He would also have a short leash. He isn't my mistake, so I would have no qualms with just waiving him and eating his salary if needed.
I'm not sure if this team is any better than last year's version. I think there are definite upgrades with the pitching staff. Bohm would be up for the whole year. We'd lose Didi's and JTR's bats and JTR's defense (but I think McCann is not a far drop defensively). I think I would sign as many non-roster invitees as possible for the bullpen and rotation; especially in the rotation I would try to stash established guys in AAA since injuries are bound to happen and we never seem prepared for that.