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Chat with MLBTR's Steve Adams: 3/21/23
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Steve Adams
Good morning! We'll get this underway at 1pm CT, but you can start leaving questions at any time if you'd like. Talk to everyone in a few hours! Looking forward to it, as always.
I finally have come up with a possible IKF trade scenario that could make sense involving undesirable contracts: IKF to San Francisco in exchange for Alex Wood (or maybe Jakob Junis). Could that work? SF has a lot of SP depth and seems to need a middle infielder on paper.
Steve Adams
I don't think either really holds much appeal for the Giants. Wood is coming off a 5.10 ERA, but his K, BB and GB rates all remained strong. He also comes with double the luxury hit that IKF does, so the Yankees wouldn't want that in return anyhow. Junis isn't what I'd call an undesirable contract for the Giants. He's some nice rotation depth and a solid long man out of the 'pen at a pretty reasonable rate.
In general, I don't think the Yankees can/will trade IKF for much in the way of immediate MLB help
Maybe they can get a marginal reliever for him or something, but I don't see them getting meaningful rotation help.
Please tell me they aren’t going to increase the pitch clock times…..loving these snappier games
Steve Adams
I don't think they're going to completely restructure the current setup. The pitch clock is going to stay in place. Tacking a few seconds onto each limit would still markedly increase the pace of play and could help players ease into the change in 2023. It's always possible they could back it down by a second or two in subsequent seasons once everyone's more on board with the more brisk pace of things.
WBC Final
Who you got Tonight ?  Merrill Kelly toeing the rubber  .....
Steve Adams
It's just so hard to bet against the USA lineup. I can understand being underwhelmed with Kelly starting the championship game, but I think he's an underrated guy in general, and the bullpen for the US is strong. Both are really, really good teams though. I don't think there's a runaway favorite, and if you felt strongly that Japan had the edge, I couldn't push back too strongly.
Who will win tonight's WBC final?

Japan (28.6% | 138 votes)
USA (71.4% | 345 votes)

Total Votes: 483
Rocco Rox
do the Rockies actually think Profar is going to make a difference?  last with him, last without him
Steve Adams
The Rockies are constantly making additions like this even though most onlookers -- myself included -- think they're a fourth- or fifth-place team at best in every given year.

I don't think they're a good team, but as I've said before, I kind of admire that they keep making win-now moves and don't really seem to want to commit to a years-long rebuild. In general, I think we've seen that strategy is far from a silver bullet to fix a franchise, and with the draft lottery now in place that's even more true.

I don't know if the Rox think Profar pushes them into Wild Card contention. Dick Monfort thought he had a possible .500 team on his club pre-Profar. I strongly disagree, but I like seeing teams try.
why did they send grissom and shewmake down to aaa?
Steve Adams
Presumably, the Braves want Grissom to keep working on his defense at shortstop, which is a legitimate question. Shewmake still only has like 220 total professional games under his belt.

I get being irked by it, but in general, the players that make the Opening Day roster aren't being handed a season-long run with their roles. If Grissom keeps improving at short, hits well, etc. -- he could be up before long.
It's definitely not the "service time!" thing that I saw some people decrying on Twitter. If they cared about Grissom's service clock, they wouldn't have called him up from Double-A last summer.
WBC Game Length
Can’t help but notice how not a single person has complained about the games being over 3 hours long… Maybe baseball fans just like baseball and will watch fun games.
Steve Adams
I've seen plenty of people saying they love the games but miss the crisp pace the pitch clock brings about. With the WBC, it's also a pretty short tournament, at least relative to the MLB season. Easier to say "Well these games are long, but that's fine because the regular season will be shorter."

I think it's a reach to suggest that most fans just don't care about the length of games. They definitely do.
I keep hearing Alexis Diaz being named as a potentially replacement target w/the Mets for his brother Edwin, but 2 questions. 1, why would the Reds trade a guy like that w/5 years of control left? & 2. Considering what will likely be a very high pricetag for him, he is he worth that, considering he really only has 1 good year on his resume, & 1 year above AA?
Steve Adams
The Alexis Diaz stuff seems like a nothingburger to me, which is why we haven't really addressed it on MLBTR. It's speculative, and if Alexis weren't Edwin's brother, I doubt people would even be talking about it.

Scott Barlow and Alex Lange are also closers on rebuilding teams, and yet no one' s fixating on them as options for the Mets (even though both would be good pickups).

I agree, the Reds have little motivation to move five years of Diaz unless the Mets make the type of offer they've been reluctant to make for the past 12+ months on the trade market.
Big 3-Run Jack last night for Japan for Yoshida. He’s the real deal and is going to be a solid signing for Boston. Agree?
Steve Adams
Was a good-looking swing, and he's had a nice tournament, but I'm not going to judge a half-decade contract that set the Red Sox back more than $100MM (when including the posting fee) based on like 20-25 plate appearances.
Kim Ng
If Avi Garcia continues to be terrible (what an awful spring), am I simply too committed to let him go? Would giving up an Avi cost me my job?
Steve Adams
The Marlins aren't going to cut Garcia less than two years into a four-year deal. It just doesn't happen, even in cases where it arguably makes sense (e.g. Braves/Ozuna, Reds/Moustakas, etc.)
Who will get the start at SS for the Yankees? Peraza has done nothing to lose the job. Volpe has played well, but has limited AB above AA.
Steve Adams
Yankees' starting shortstop on Opening Day?

Oswald Peraza (56.5% | 165 votes)
Anthony Volpe (24.3% | 71 votes)
Isiah Kiner-Falefa (19.2% | 56 votes)

Total Votes: 292
Havana Marlins fan
Have we Signed Gurriel yet ?
Steve Adams
They signed him 11 days ago:

He's already appeared in four spring games with them.
What sort of contract is Giolito likely to get if he hits free agency next year? Thoughts on his fit with the Giants rotation?
Steve Adams
With a good season he has a pretty clear path to a nine-figure deal, and the Giants just haven't given that type of commitment to pitchers or even really considered it.

I expect the only real way he signs with the Giants next year is if he has pretty poor results for a second straight season and is looking for a rebound on the type of short-term gambit they seem to love.
Are the Marlins finally desparate enough for hitting that they are ready to trade Eury to Pittsburgh for Bryan Reynolds?
Steve Adams
I don't think the Marlins are trading Eury Perez for anyone, no.
Altuve replacement
Any chance Elias links up with his old team and trades Houston a middle infielder? I don't see a great fit, but curious if they're exploring those kinds of moves.
Steve Adams
I think Houston's just going to go with Hensley and Dubon for the most part. Could see them grabbing some infield depth off waivers or something to help safeguard against further middle-infield injuries, but as for something like Jorge Mateo to Houston? It's a bit of an overreaction. I guess they could look into Ramon Urias if the O's decide they want to clear space for a prospect, but they're not going to have everyday ABs for Westburd, Ortiz, etc. with Mateo/Frazier up the middle anyhow.
Bold prediction
Which is more likely- Nick Gordon jacks 20 HR or Byron Buxton hits 40
Steve Adams
Gordon made some real swing changes last year and hit eight homers in his final 290 PAs. I don't think 20's a crazy reach if he gets 450-500 PAs. Buxton has obvious 40-homer power (28 HR in 92 games last year), but he's only reached the number of games played he'd need to hit that level once in his career.

I'll narrowly say Gordon, but I don't think either is super likely. If you'd set Gordon at even 22-23 homers, I'd probably have gone Buxton.

Sure hope we can get a few years with Buxton playing 140+ games. Such a fun player.
Ernie Whitt
Will Ryu return to the jays this year (either as a reliever or starter) and how effective do you think he'll be?
Steve Adams
No reason to think he won't be back at some point mid- or late summer. Role will be dependent on the rest of the rotation's health/performance. If I'm guessing right now, I think he can slide into the back of the rotation.

Ryu's 36, but he's pretty much always been well above-average when healthy. Silly to expect him to return to 2020 levels of performance, but no reason to think he can't be an average starter so long as he's healthy. He was exactly that for 31 starts in 2021 and clearly not healthy in 2022. If he's a slightly better-than-average starter, I wouldn't be surprised.
Do you believe Ohtani's performance in the WBC has added suitors and value to his next contract?
Steve Adams
I think everyone pretty much already viewed Ohtani as the most talented player on the planet. Performing on the big stage can't hurt that perception, but I don't think there's a team who viewed themselves as "out" on Ohtani for whatever reason that is now suddenly saying "Never mind we need to get in on this."

It's still a pretty limited number of teams that'll be able to reasonably offer the type of contract the top the market will bear for him.
Do you think Pearson ever gets a shot at the rotation again with the blue jays?
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