Thursday, 8 May 2008

Risk/Reward Ratio

During all the speculation about the Jays going hunting for another hitter, there have been several names come up which I like. If we are only talking about putting Stairs together with a platoon partner who hits lefties well and who, btw, maybe can sub somewhere else, then Kevin Mench makes a ton of sense, Josh Phelps though not an outfielder has some appeal in that regard. Another guy with a good record at that task that I have not seen previously mentioned is Bobby Kielty.

But I have another thought in mind. Not that I really like Stewart as the DH v. LHP but that seems to be out of my hands so I just have to accept it. My larger concern is whether or not this team wins with Shannon Stewart as the full time LF. i understand Gibby's reasoning that Stewart will never achieve his (limited) potential this year without the reps that playing full time will get him, but my concern is whether or not Stewart at his current best (which is a .730ish OPS) is enough. Just acquiring a platoon mate for Stairs concedes LF to Stewart.

My thought is this - can we put a solid hitter in LF, nevermind whether or not Stewart ever justifies his job on the team, without breaking the bank for an expensive slugger like Adam Dunn. There are a lot of names out there which might require some roster manipulation, but one I have not heard mentioned (except by me back in the winter) but who makes a great deal of sense to me is the enigmatic Milton Bradley.

YES, the man is a big time flake, YES he has not been the most physically solid player in his career, but if you can get the man on the field for a full season you still have a special player. The guy had a 1.004 OPS in San Diego of all places last season in 105 AB. And he's off to a fine start in Texas. He's a balanced hitter vs. LH and RH, he's a good fielder and with Texas having two major league caliber OF on hand in AAA they can afford to deal him - especially given they are looking at another unsuccessful season. If we could do something like Thigpen and Frasor (or Tallett) and maybe a minor league second tier guy like Nathan Staner if they need convincing, then i think the potential reward is worth the risk. Unless someone can give me something concrete that shows his attitude within the clubhouse is a serious issue.



G said...

Bradley is many things but a flake is not one of them. He's actually considered a good teammate by his peers who busts his ass to win. I think he is one of these guys that the media doesn't like because he is a hothead or whatever. I'm not sure he is a great value. I'd rather have Juan Rivera. His salary is much less and he hits for more power with similar avg. And, give Stew a chance. If guys like wells, hill, overbay, etc would hit like they can I think Stew would be fijne in this lineup. Really, the jays should sign Barry. I wanted to puke when I heard Ricciardi say there are no boppers available on Wilner's show.

The Southpaw said...

I'm a big fan of Rivera, too, but the Angels aren't the easiest club to deal with. Remember how it made eminent sense to everyone to swap Adam Kennedy for Shea Hillenbrand back in '06 and we just couldn't get it done? They just don't trade much out there...

Jon Daniels is a bit of a wheeler-dealer. I'm all for MB if he could be had at the right price. Hell, we should've just signed him in the offseason. But nevertheless.


The Southpaw said...

g: did you say earlier that you're on the west coast?

I have some friends in Vancouver who are having trouble getting JaysTalk streamed online, was wondering how you swing it...


The Southpaw said...

Bradley's definetly a good option.

Mind you, I'd rather see Lind, but Bradley would radically change this lineup.


sp said...

Yea, why not just play Lind? If indeed this is what JP planned to do all along, Lind makes the most sense. I don't get it either.

Milton Bradley? I don't know about him. Is he really that much better than Stewart to give up Tallet and Thigpen?

My dream scenario would be Lind in LF and JP picking up Mench or Piazza to mash LHP. If only Shannon could play SS.

G said...

I am indeed in Vancouver. Yeah the streaming of JaysTalk does suck here for some reason. I assumed it was the station. There is a solution though. When it starts to cut out and buffer, I just quickly press stop, then play. It seems to work. Otherwise it doesn't usually come back, which is probably happening to your buddies. There is pretty much an embargo against the jays on local sports radio out here. Driving home last night during the jays game, and they didn't even give the Jays score. They were sure to tell us about the Boston game however. Those Bastards. Our only local ball now is the short-season A-ball, which doesn't start until late June. At least the beer is cheap (relatively).
And, you are right about the Angels. In truth I'm not totally sold on anyone other than Bonds, especially depending what the Jays would have to give up. I'm not willing to give a starter unless Micah Owings is coming in our direction and that ain't happenin'.
Hopefully the streaming works for your buddies. I should tell Wilner there is a problem, maybe the engineers can do something.

G said...

And, I'm coming around on Bradley.