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July 30, 2009

Orioles: The deal

SherrellAP.jpgBy now, you all know that the Orioles have agreed to trade closer George Sherrill to the Dodgers for pitcher Steve Johnson (yes, Dave's son) and a 22-year-old power-hitting third baseman named Josh Bell. Everybody's still digesting this, and the clubs are scurrying to get the paperwork together to make it official, but it tells me at least one thing:

The Orioles must be planning to bring back either Melvin Mora or Aubrey Huff for one more season.

Why do I think that? Because Bell is a big kid with a big swing, but he's not a spring training away from the major leagues. He's a switch-hitting third baseman who has shown good power in the low minor leagues, but he's also got very wide splits between the left side (his good side) and the right side (where he has struggled pretty badly at the Double-A level). Oh, and he also made 38 errors in 108 games in 2007 and has 17 in 91 games at Chattanooga this season.

He's a work in progress who could end up playing either third base or first, but I can't imagine the Orioles are projecting him to play either at a level higher than Triple-A next year.

Of course, you've got to be happy for Dave Johnson, who won't have to drive to Michigan or some other distant spot to watch his son pitch anymore. Steve had some ups and downs after signing with the Dodgers out of St. Paul's, but he was 8-4 with a 3.82 ERA in the California League before being called up to Double-A Chattanooga recently. He was only there for two starts, but he pitched well in both (1-1, 1.69 ERA).

It's only logical to presume both players will be assigned to the Double-A Bowie Baysox.

Do you think they O's got enough for Sherrill?

WBAL plug: We'll throw that question out tonight at six on Sportsline (WBAL, 1090 AM) right after we bring you fresh sound from the Michael Oher news conference that is going to start at about 5:50 p.m. at the Ravens facility in Owings Mills. If you're outside of WBAL signal range, go to WBAL.com and click on the "Listen Live" icon.

Associated Press photo

Posted by Peter Schmuck at 5:00 PM | | Comments (181)
Categories: Just baseball
        

Comments

the erik bedard deal is just the gift that keeps on giving.....great news with dave. I heard him on the radio basically crying. My dad loved the new york mets when he was a kid, and i cant even imagine me playing for the team he grew up loving. Great story

if we have to put up with another year of mora, im going to vomit...

It's always easier to criticize, obviously, but if 10 teams actually were calling about Sherrill, then I kinda feel like maybe the O's could've gotten more. Bell in particular doesn't seem like the kind of guy you trade for -- there are lots of mediocre big lugs out there to pick up cheap when you need one. Andy has done a great job remaking the O's so far, though, so I am hoping for the best.

It doesn't sound like the sort of deal you hold out for.

I'm with Mikey. Mora must go-a!

Not nearly enough. For this why not keep him especially when he's not even going to be a free agent. I need an explanation - I thought the plan was to start competing possibly next yr if not definitely 2011. I just can' see how this helps that cause. I believe in AM, but need to hear the reasoning.

Joe i couldn't agree more. You have to take in consideration that george was a 2 time all star.Closers and premium set up men are vital for a team in contention. I really think we sold ourselves short on this trade. I would have thought we would have wanted somebody a little closer to being major league ready. I hope the pressure of making a trade to to make a trade didn't enter into this. I think andy does way better with off seasons trades then during the season. If all those teams were really interested in traded for george then i think we got stiffed. Very disappointing.

It's important to put Steve Johnson's stats in perspective. An ERA of under 4 in the California League is outstanding. The Dodgers' team there plays in a bandbox and the entire league is known as an extreme hitters' league. I would have rather had Brandon Wood than Bell, as Wood is ML-ready and who knows if Bell ever will be ML-ready. However, getting two solid prospects for a 32-year old pitcher is a great deal. But the other poster is right, Mora is done and there's no way the O's can go into next year expecting him to be a regular. MacPhail has done a great job getting minor league prospects, but I'm still waiting to see him put a halfway decent major league team on the field. If 2009 is the last "hold on until we're ready year" than you can't go into 2010 with Mora or Huff as regulars.

I agree Pete, This kid needs at least one full year in Norfolk , as does Brandon Synder. So I see the O's cutting ties with Mora, and signing a low cost 3B to platoon with Wiggy and getting Huff back for one more year until these guys are ready in 2011. (this will save some money too) Lets face it 2010 is all about getting the young pitchers seasoned and fine tuning the bullpen. We can always buy a bat if needed to knock off the Dead Sox in 2011!

Congrats, Pete--you called it. You said they'd move Georgie for a corner infield prospect. Even got a bonus, with a local arm to boot. So the question is, do they pick up Mora's option or do they offer Aubrey arbitration?


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Pete's reply: One or the other, I think.

Pete,
as well as we had stolen the M's bank 2 years ago, i think we got robbed big time this year. And for once i'm going to criticize AM. This is a bad move for the O's and is just a business decision since G.S was going to demand lots of money in the off season. The 2 prospects we got in return were never near any of the prospects we have at the same position already (Snyder). What are you thoughts on this?


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Pete's reply: I don't think they have a better third base prospect than Bell, though I don't know how much that is saying.

Dodgers fans are already bragging they got a top quality lefty closer without having "to give up much"...enough said.

two time all star? I think he was a one time all star because somebody has to make the all star team from the orioles whether they deserve it or not . . . not to say he didnt.

Horrible move!!!!

You give up a top closer in the game the past two years for hitter that won't even play in the Bigs next year and for a pitcher that was drafted in the 13th round, 406 overall??? If he is anything like his father, we're doomed. What next. Make Dave Johnson, his father the new manager?

How dumb is this trade?

And please, I don't even want to imagine another year of torture with Huff and Mora. Are you kidding me?

A trade that will live in infamy. AM got his pocket picked. The deal makes no sense. He loses one of the game's best closers and picks up two very, very remote prospects. The Dodgers made out like the Dutch buying Manhattan for $26 worth of beads. Did Angeloser insist on a salary dump?

I'm in agreement with the majority here. Bell is at least 2 seasons away and the other guy is just a local feel good move. Plus we are already suseptable to left handed pitching and I don't think bell will ever make it as a switch hitter. This is the first Mcphail move I haven't liked.

Horriable!!!! that it I quit.... someone please fire the front office get rid of Angelos and get this team out of this city.... I'm done with the Orioles. This was the last straw. Horriable......I'll believe in the Orioles when they make it to the world series.. wait i'm 28 years old... guess I won't live to see that. Horriable move.

And there you have it. Why the Dodgers are in first the O's in last. Their only viable trading chip for two unproven AA players who very well may never make it to the show. Poor trade.

I'm far from thrilled with this deal. Couldn't we have held on to Sherrill for the rest of his contract? Why the rush to deal him anyway? Who closes now, Jim Johnson? He's hardly looked a closer lately. Couldn't the O's have signed a free agent to play third and held on to a very good closer? Seems like this team is further away from competing now.

At first glance and review, it sure looks like we are "making a move to make a move." Andy McPhail said earlier in the month that he wouldn't "make a trade just to make a trade," but it sure does look like we're giving George Sherrill away for a whole lot of mediocrity.

The guy with the pizza box for a hat actually WANTED to stay and pitch here.....and fans actually liked him for the most part. He was something of a cult favorite with the flat breezy.

Can AM still change his mind? Somebody stop him from chucking our closer for middling "prospects."

Terrible move. Only two prospects for an All-Star caliber lefty? This sounds like going out to get a few guys to say that we did something, when in reality, we only brought in a guy with very questionable defense at the AA level; and a broadcaster's son, which could be beneficial, or nothing more than PR. If I'm Andy MacPhail, I don't take anything less than three prospects, or those two prospects and two journeymen to fill the gaps for the remainder of this season. Does he realize that the back end of our bullpen has been crippled by this? J.J. has been terrible lately, and no one else is a legitimate closer. Closer-by-committee isn't the way to go.

I thought I'd step away and reflect on this with a cool head, but I came back angrier than I was before.

WTF!!!!!

Unless you're packaging these two losers we just got for Sherrill with another 4 prospects for Roy Halladay, this is, I repeat, HORRIBLE MOVE!

"Joe i couldn't agree more. You have to take in consideration that george was a 2 time all star." actually he was only an all-star once: last year. thats it.

Looks like it will be Wigginton at 3b and Huff at 1b next yr, in other words, next yr we'll have essentially the same team. Looks like "the plan" is now for winning in 2011, that is until 2011 gets here. LMWAO

NO they didn't get enough.

They should've gotten Elbert to replace Johnson or DeWitt to replace Bell. I can't see how they couldn't have gotten someone who was more major league ready for a pitcher or Sherrill's ability.

Were those two names discussed?


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Pete's reply: The people I talk to say Bell's a better prospect than DeWitt, just farther away.

Some pretty good comments here but there are several soft stepping a bit. Let's call it what it is.....unbelievably STUPID and this "STUPID" is why the Orioles are where they are and will be for YEARS to come. McFail strikes again!!! Sure, Sherrill has had some staggering blown saves and losses BUT he was their only real trading chip and it's blown now.

To "mike": Why don't YOU leave the city? What a ridiculous thing to write, "get this team out of the city." If you're 28 then you were three years old when the Colts moved out in the middle of the night. You don't remember how rotten that was.

You want to quit on the team....you go right ahead. Get this team out of the city? Hop on a Greyhound, kid, and drive west 'til your hat floats.

So just what is it that the geniuses on here think we should have been able to get for a 32 year old set-up man? He did a good job for us, but he's not a premier closer as evidenced by the fact that he won't be the Dodgers' closer and wouldn't be the closer on most good teams. We got two legitimate ML prospects for him, including one at a position of major need. That is a great return for this guy. Those who don't think so are very unrealistic.

I think they will offer Huff arbitration and he'll probably accept. No way they pick up Mora's option. Also, I don't think this means they wouldn't consider signing Chone Figgins or Adrian Beltre in the off season. Bell could end up at first and he and Snyder could platoon and or share time at 1B and DH.

Trading Sherrill needed to happen and I am glad it did. I like the trade.

I already made my miserable, cranky feelings known in the previous post, so I won't drag it out other than to say that I look forward to hearing MacPhail's rationale for this disaster. The deal is so bad on so many levels, poor Andy will be talking all night.

I can only say that it's a really lucky break that this deal was not the first deal he made in this town or Mike Flanagan and Jim Duquette would still be performing their magic.

I wish them luck with their careers in Baltimore.

However I can't but help feel a bit of meh when thinking about these two. Nothing about them says ML roster is a sure thing. As you noted the splits on Bell are pretty severe and his defense is less than good.

I feel we should have done better, oh well, it is what it is.

I find it interesting how everyone is moaning about losing Sherill. He made the all star team once this past year. I imagine as much due to the fact that every team has to have a player on the team.
He is a good player, but can you imagine him being the closer of the Yankees, Red Sox or Rays? If we was that good I imagine we would have gotten more for him. Sherrill is a good player on what this year has been a poor team, but not a top shelve closer.

This is a very good trade for the O's they turned a 32 year old relief pitcher into two solid legit prospects. Besides the fact that Sherrill was a throw-in on one of the best trades in o's history, he's on the downside of his career age-wise. Relievers are not typically valuable assets, not to mention their value can be extremely volatile.. And he's not "one of the top closers in the game", not even close. As Rob Neyer wrote over on ESPN.com "If I were an Orioles fan, I would be organizing a party right now." And that Bedard deal just keeps getting better and better, we get a season and a half of Sherrill, plus two more prospects on top of Jones, Tillman, Mickolio, and Butler. Andy Macphail is doing a superb job, he wins yet another trade!

I think it made sense for the O's to trade Sherrill since I think he is playing as well now as he ever will. And let's be real, we really don't need a closer that is going to be a FA before we are really in contention. If we like his so much, we could sign him when he becomes available at the end of his contract. Did they get enough for him? I don't know since I'm not sure what else was being offered for him. If 10 teams wanted to sign him, I have enough faith in the GM to take the best offer on the table. At least 2 top prospects would seem to be the minimum but I will withhold criticism to see how it plays out. The Bedard trade has done us quite well.

Get a grip of your self there "terpfan". I would not call a 13th rounder, 406th overall anything remotely close to a legitimate prospect. Don't think for one second he wasn't part of the deal because of his father. I could understand if his father was Jim Palmer, but David Johnson? GIVE ME A BREAK!

um Andy - you've been taken to the cleaners - this isn't a bad deal ...it's perhaps one of the worst I have seen in the past 5 years (although to his credit - the M's version of the bedard trade was much worse)...this is a terrible trade and a huge disappointment. these are marginal guys??? What in the world is he thinking? Just awful.

I think this trade absolutely stinks. Sherrill was under control for another few years, and defintely would have signed a long-term deal with the Orioles if approached down the road. In return we get two prospects, both of whom may never play a game at Camden Yards.

This probably means we will hold on to Jim Johnson as our closer and build around him (Albers, etc.), but the reality is now we have a pen with a lot of ? marks behind those two I just mentioned (Hendrickson is a FA, Baez will be gone, Sarfate inconsistent, Mickolio not enough MLB experience, Bass is so-so). We still have way too many voids/holes to fill and we just shipped off a proven closer and left a big gap in the pen for two potential busts. Oh well. . .I guess this is why we have sucked for so long

Seems pretty good to me. Most baseball sites like what the Orioles got--Bell in particular. Dodger blogs seem to be a little wistful at how much they gave up. I haven't found a single source that thinks the Orioles made a mistake here.

With 10 teams supposedly bidding on him, you have to think that MacPhail had a pretty good idea what the market for Sherrill was. Bell is a 22-year old batting .296/.386./497 in his first year at AA (remember, before this year Wieters had never played a game above AA either). If he keeps up this progress, he should make it to Baltimore at the beginning of 2011 at the latest.

For everyone dumping on the trade, please tell me which of the publicly leaked offers for Sherrill you liked better?

I hate how in baseball the day before the trade deadline the small market teams have to trade away talent to better large market teams to go on and win. Look at the standings all the major markets are in first place and all the teams failing are small markets. This is a totally broken game and ol Bud should be embarrassed today on his birthday that it came out the sox cheated to win a championship and teams like the O’s and Pirates are making questionable trades that don’t make them better to aide good teams.

Another interesting note to those that think we were had by the Dodgers.
Josh Bell was ranked the 8th best prospect in the Dogers organization by Baseball Prospectus and Steve Johnson was one of three players noted has having hust missed the list of eleven players listed by BP as the Dodgers best prospects .
It appears Andy got pretty good value for a good reliever.

Sounds like they acquired the wrong Johnson.

We just got the second screwing of the ghost of Glen Davis. What in God's name are McFail & crew thinking? This deal is beyond horrible...I am actually sick over this.
How can you justify sending a great closer, a great guy & someone actually happy to be here for 2 AA players years away? If the O's were supposed to be ready to compete beginning next season...who the hell is going to close...Jim "homerun" Johnson?
Don't McFail & co. get tired of picking up corner castoffs from other clubs that can't make it beyond AAA...please refer to last years pickup of Costanzo.
Sorry guys, this trade, if it can qualify as one, has all the makings of a trade just to make a trade. Why do I even bother with this team anymore? This management is no better than Flanagan & Beatty & disgusts me now even more with this stupid/STUPID move.
Thank you George...you were a pleasure to watch & great at what you do. Too bad the same will NEVER be said for morons running the show here.
Andy one last thing...how do you justify to all of us that have stuck with this club year after lousy year how an All-Star of George's calibre can be dumped for nothings in the world of MLB? You have a RESPONSIBILITY to all of us to explain this move. This trade stinks to the high heavens & I pray old Pete gets the word from his "private advisor" that O's fans are up in arms & he kills this deal now.
Go back to Chicago & take Pie, Costanzo & Hill with you!

To answer a few points:

1) For those who don't like the trade, have you actually looked at the stats of these two players?

2) It doesn't matter where someone was drafted--it matters how good they are now.

3) Two months ago we were ready to run Sherrill out of town, and now two strong prospects aren't good enough for him.

4) To the comments that strongly imply that the very fact that these two players are in AA means they won't be useful in the near future: Wieters was in AA last year. Matusz is in AA right now. Bell in particular could be in the majors at this point next season or the start of 2011.

5) For those who think the McFail moniker is cute or clever--given that the man's name is MacPhail, maybe it should be MacFail instead?

I'm disappointed that the third base prospect has defensive issues. Sounds like a future DH -- not a third basemen -- to me. For those of you who are worried that Mora might be brought back for next week, relax -- Wiggy will be the man at third next year!

Prospects are AA and AAA players last time I checked the Orioles are a major league team. What is wrong with this front office?!?! AM has made some good moves but lately they either take too long to pull the trigger and don’t trade players in their prime or have had bad luck with players they want to move slumping. I like AM and I really think this season had a lot of quirks beyond his control not to mention he has to work with king angelos but I have no idea what direction this team is going…. Bud Selig has to step in and do something to help small market teams. The revenue sharing isn’t being used properly.

Hey Slugger, you're just the kind of "genius" I was talking about. I don't give a rats a$$ where a guy was drafted. I care what he is doing on the field. If you had bothered to read anything before just spewing the kind of negativity you always spew, you would know he is viewed as a legitimate back of the rotation ML prospect. He was the Sun's player of the year coming out of high school, throws pretty hard and is doing even better since his promotion to AA than he was in a very good season in A ball. Why don't you answer my question. Just what were we supposed to get for Sherrill instead?

Jack Lance, what rock did you crawl out from under?

I am sure some have seen this already, but Rob Neyer of ESPN.com loves the trade. He says:

"Some deals just barely need any comment at all. Like this one. The rebuilding Orioles will receive third baseman Josh Bell and right-hander Steve Johnson, both of whom were playing at Double-A Chattanooga.

"I'm not going to criticize the Dodgers for trading Josh Bell. Who knows? Maybe Casey Blake will live forever.
What I will do is send up a big hip-hip-hooray for the Orioles, because the single best thing any rebuilding manager can do, ever, is trade a relief pitcher in late July for a couple of solid prospects.

"Let me repeat for anyone not paying attention: a relief pitcher.

"Relief pitchers are, well, I would say that they're "fungible" except that word always makes me think of a massively fun and rigid airship. Instead I'll say that a relief pitcher, purely in terms of value, is not worth two solid prospects.

"Bell and Johnson are solid. Bell opened the season as the Dodgers' eighth-best prospect, and has done nothing this season to damage his credentials -- he's got mid-range power and a .364 career on-base percentage. Johnson is 21, almost 22, certainly throws hard enough (90-93) and has struck out nearly a batter per inning in his five minor-league seasons.

"If I were an Orioles fan, I would be organizing a party right now."


I think this is one of those deals where you have to just wait and see.
Sherrill is a 32 year old middle reliever on a contending team. He probably only has a few good years left in him. We all know he is no Trevor Hoffman.
In return, the O's get a potential long term answer at either 3rd or 1st base and another promising young pitcher.
I am a bit surprised the O's did not get more for this trade based on MacPhails previous comments. But he has shown good judgement so far in the prospects he has acquired.
I think you got to wait till next year and see if these guys play well in AAA.

Pete,
Who is going to fill his roster spot? Ray, Sarfate, Mickolio?


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Pete's reply: Mickolio.


Less-a of Mor-a is bett-a.

Oh, and I think the trade stinks, too. Best of Luck, George!

Apparently no one here is familiar with the "sell high" concept.

Is everyone forgetting that Sherrill fell apart in the last two months last year?

Yes, he had some of the best closer stats in the league this year, but I still held my breath every time he came to the mound in the ninth. He's just not "lights out" closer material, and I'd much rather use the rest of the season to audition Johnson or Meredith, or let Ray win his job back so we can have a closer for years to come.

As for what the O's got in return...no one wanted Sherrill as a closer, they wanted him as a set up guy, which are traditionally less valuable.

Terpfan,

It appears that you haven't done your homework. Johnson has pitched in the minors for 5 years with an ERA of 4.25. I don't consider that worthy of a legitimate prospect. Can he be a good pitcher? Anything is possible, but the numbers are not eye popping.

Before you get your panties in a bunch, who says we had to trade Sherrill? He is only 32. Pitchers can pitch well into their late 30s. You reward him. Give him a new contract. Perhaps not as a closer, but you keep him. He is a good pitcher and he wants to stay here. He was an allstar last year and all star caliber this year, by anyone's standards.

Why make a trade only just to make one. If what you're looking for is not out there, don't make the trade.

Now that I answered your question, why don't you answer mine. You don't think that the fact that he is David Johnson's son had 99.9% to do with it?


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Pete's reply: I doub it had very much to do with it at all. Andy knows Dave and, I assume, likes him, but they aren't so close that he would do something for that reason.

Interesting take......

From Rob Neyer ESPN

Orioles turn reliever into prospects

July 30, 2009 6:07 PM

Some deals just barely need any comment at all. Like this one:

The Los Angeles Dodgers and Baltimore Orioles have agreed in principle to a trade that would send former All-Star reliever George Sherrill to Los Angeles for two minor league prospects. The Dodgers will pay the approximately $1 million left on Sherrill's salary this year.
--snip--

The rebuilding Orioles will receive third baseman Josh Bell and right-hander Steve Johnson, both of whom were playing at Double-A Chattanooga.

I'm not going to criticize the Dodgers for trading Josh Bell. Who knows? Maybe Casey Blake will live forever.
What I will do is send up a big hip-hip-hooray for the Orioles, because the single best thing any rebuilding manager can do, ever, is trade a relief pitcher in late July for a couple of solid prospects.

Let me repeat for anyone not paying attention: a relief pitcher.

Relief pitchers are, well, I would say that they're "fungible" except that word always makes me think of a massively fun and rigid airship. Instead I'll say that a relief pitcher, purely in terms of value, is not worth two solid prospects.

Bell and Johnson are solid. Bell opened the season as the Dodgers' eighth-best prospect, and has done nothing this season to damage his credentials -- he's got mid-range power and a .364 career on-base percentage. Johnson is 21, almost 22, certainly throws hard enough (90-93) and has struck out nearly a batter per inning in his five minor-league seasons.

If I were an Orioles fan, I would be organizing a party right now.

HELLO!! Anybody have a brain today? Do you want Sherril coming into A playoff game facing Ryan Howard. Not me. Sherril was good, but shakey. I see Sherrill blowing up and having the dodgers not like him much. I cannot say I 100% love the deal, but Sherrill in my opinion is good but not great. Jim Johnson was a closer at AAA. I belive he was lights out.

AND to the idoit who claims this is the straw that broke his heart to be a fan of the orioles anymore, you where never a fan to begin with. Which means you will be back once we have turned it around in a few years.

Please tell me that was the best offer McPhail got for Sherrill. A corner IF who, if we're lucky, makes it to Baltimore as a role player, and a pitcher whose the offspring of a part-time local announcer. And if that was the best deal for a two-time All-Star, then he would have been better off holding on to it. My God, you see the young guys play and you get a little optomistic, and crap like this reminds you of just why it's so hard to go all in. So next year, it's possible they will bring back at least one of the this year's offensive anchors, doesn't matter which one because they both stink. If it's hard out here for a pimp, they've never met a Oriole fan.

I don't like the trade at all because it feels like we're giving up next year already. Relief pitching is kind of fleeting..but now we have another Big hole and we really didn;t fill the already existing ones with this move. Hopefully one of these 2 turns out to prove us all wrong.

Also - if MacPail & Angelos are going to try to sell this fan base on another season of Mora (bless his heart but he's about done) and Huff, this is one die-hard Orioles fan that is NOT buying that.

~~ I would not call a 13th rounder, 406th overall anything remotely close to a legitimate prospect.~~

exactly right. It is also a joke how overrated Johnny Unitas was for a mere 19th round pick.

It's a bad deal.

For a closer with Sherrill's numbers, only 32, and few years from free agency, we should at least get two major-league ready, near can't-miss prospects, not two guys a year or more away, if they ever make it all.

I think Bell and Johnson werer rated the #8 and #15 propets in the Dodger system. I would think for a proven major league closer you should be getting something like a #1 or #2 propsect.

On the outside chance that the Os will be in contention this time next year, you can bet they'll be trying to land a guy like Sherill and it will cost them more than Bell and Johnson. They just should have kept him.

What are becoming, the Pittsburgh Pirates. trading stars for low level prospects.

Hey horseshoe,

Unitas played football. This is baseball talk in case you didn't know.

From what I've been reading it is not true at all that Dodger fans think they put one over on the Orioles

http://www.truebluela.com/2009/7/30/969590/dodgers-acquire-george-sherrill

This is a great haul for Sherrill.

Dear god, though, I fear Schmuckie is right. I can't bear the thought of either one of those guys (Huff or Mora) back in the black and orange for yet another year at yet another ridiculously over-inflated salary for yet another disappointing performance in the field and at the plate... but I guess that's what I deserve for being an O's fan.

Slugger, no, I don't. Anyone who honestly would think that a ML GM would make a decision to make a mediocre post-game show announcer happy really is delusional. By the way, that was an ingenious retort to Horseshoe's comment. It really makes it easy to see what you're made of Slugger (not much).

Ry, great post. The second half says it all. Repeating it for those not paying attention. Neyer said--

What I will do is send up a big hip-hip-hooray for the Orioles, because the single best thing any rebuilding manager can do, ever, is trade a relief pitcher in late July for a couple of solid prospects.

Let me repeat for anyone not paying attention: a relief pitcher.

Relief pitchers are, well, I would say that they're "fungible" except that word always makes me think of a massively fun and rigid airship. Instead I'll say that a relief pitcher, purely in terms of value, is not worth two solid prospects.

Bell and Johnson are solid. Bell opened the season as the Dodgers' eighth-best prospect, and has done nothing this season to damage his credentials -- he's got mid-range power and a .364 career on-base percentage. Johnson is 21, almost 22, certainly throws hard enough (90-93) and has struck out nearly a batter per inning in his five minor-league seasons.

If I were an Orioles fan, I would be organizing a party right now.

I'm disappointed to lose Sherrill, one of my favorite players on the team, and while you can always wish you got more in a trade, I can't say this is a bad one. "Reliever for prospects" is generally the right move to make. Bell should be considered a left-handed hitting first baseman unless he improves in the minors both in fielding and in switch-hitting, but we can use a power hitting, left-handed hitting first baseman. And you never know which pitching prospects will work out. Steve Johnson is just another one who may or may not rise to the big leagues; he has the same shot as any other minor league pitcher -- it doesn't really matter which one we got in the trade.

So, yeah. I'll miss Sherrill, but this is certainly not a "terrible" or "stupid" trade.

Lots of talk about minor league stats and draft positions given the O's dealt a guy who wasn't drafted and pitched in the independent leagues. In the spirit of Moneyball, closers are a commodity and healing a org deficiency (corner prospects) is good. And no one knows if Sherrill had the stamina to go strong into September since he broke down last year and was heading towards the same workload this year. I wish Sherrill the best, but there's a chance this deal could be like Gagne to the Sox in 2007. And he likely would've commanded $5M+ in arbitration next year.As someone who believes that the combo of Ray, JJ, Mickolio, and Sarfate (all under 30 and part of the long-term plan) could serve as the setup/clsoer duo next season, this clears room and adds budget for a big bat.

As for the return, I am betting MacPhail would've taken Wood, but I don't think the Angels were ready to do that. Instead, you've got a guy with an enormous ceiling and the MVP of the AA All Star game despite coming off a surgery-shortened season. Next spring training, I think corners will be like this year's pitching--stockpile folks, invite everyone and see what happens. Brandon Snyder, Bell, Michael Aubrey, Brandon Waring. Except for Snyder, none were in the org 12 months ago, but they'll all get a shot.

2009 will be rough (I wish JJ was pitching better before this deal was made, but not like Andy had a choice), but this is consistent with every other MacPhail deal. Oh, and for all those people who want to keep slagging the deal, go look at what you wrote in 2007 when the O's got Luke Scott. Probably not much different...

It's amazing that alot of these posters who think the O's got ripped off are the same ones who wanted to cut Sherrill in April when he was struggling. Relief pitchers are easy to replace. We got a couple decent prospects for a 32-year old reliever. These are the kinds of trades the O's need to make to get better next season and the future. So far all the professionals who have commented on the trade think the O's did a good job. But what do they know since they only write about baseball for a living.

I like Sherrill but he made me nervous everytime he came into a game. Give the prospects time and see if they develope. Besides, Johnson HAS to be better then his father.

I am not going to say this is a bad trade but it seems like its going to make us worse for a season or so. Really hope it works out but I dont think we needed to make it.

Terpfan,

Isn't ironic how you and the rest of Peter Angelo's army of posters wait until all the true fans who see their team becoming a reflection of the Pittsburgh Pirates post, to only pick apart their comments. How long can you keep defending the moves made by a filthy rich business man who could not give a rats behind about being a fan? How long will it take before people like you will see the light and realize that he is just buying time? Do you really think that they're building a dynasty here? They're plan is to make the playoffs perhaps once in the next 3 years, and keep dangling that in front of us for another 10. I'm not delusional like you are.

I don’t know about AM. Guy made some good trades but some highly questionable ones this season especially in regards to our pitching staff Hendrickson Eaton Hill Simon Koji etc and now Sherrill. Not saying hes bad but before you bash Trembley take a look at what’s been given to him by AM and co

~~Please tell me that was the best offer McPhail got for Sherrill.~~

Nope. He turned the offers of Pujols or Halladay for Sherrill to intentionally take the worst offer.

``A corner IF who, if we're lucky, makes it to Baltimore as a role player,~~

And you make this assessment based on watching him play just how many games?

~~and a pitcher whose the offspring of a part-time local announcer.~~

What are you intimating? Why does his father's identity make any difference? His stats are decent and he just won a move up in class.

~~And if that was the best deal for a two-time All-Star,~~

again with the two time all star stuff. what am I missing? What year besides 2008 was Sherril an all star?

~~then he would have been better off holding on to it.~~

holding on to it? what is this "it" you refer to. And maybe you are right but many disagree. Time will tell. Until then, you dont know any better than anyone else.

Chill out everyone. This is just like the NFL draft--we won't know if this was a good deal or bad deal for two years. I do know this-AM pulled one of the all-time great heists from Seattle in the Bedard deal and he got pretty good value for steroid-boy Tejada (plus a salary dump). Lets let time tell on this. AM has a great track record in his short stay here and in Minnesota. He knows what he is doing. And don't worry--Mora is as good as gone. Yes they might keep Huff but at probably half the price. If he walks, we'll pick up someone else.

~~Hey horseshoe,
Unitas played football. This is baseball talk in case you didn't know.~~

the point transcends the sport, but sorry for confusing you. I am sure it was a strain to have one of your brain cells on baseball and the other one on football.

1. I can not take seriously, criticism from someone, who thinks calling AM, McFail, is cute or witty.
2. Those who think AM has made a foolish trade, please tell me at what point did he loose the knowledge and expertise that allowed him to rape Houston and Seattle?

Wow, some seriously delusional people on here.

I don't know which LA fans you guys are reading, but TrueBlueLA is tearing out their hair over this, and can't believe how much they gave up.

We got a 3B prospect who started the year as the #8 prospect in the LA system and has hit better than projected. Most analysts would put him as the #3 or so positional prospect in their system now.

We also get a 21-year-old pitcher who had a sub-5.00 ERA in a league known for eating pitchers alive. Chris Tillman only managed a 5.40 or so ERA in that league, and the Dodgers' affiliate home park is a bandbox. He had a 2.43 K/BB ration in A+, and in his first two starts in AA has a 5.00 K/BB.

Reality says George Sherrill is a 32-year-old lefty specialist who's a closer only because he's on one of the worst teams in baseball without a better option. You don't get "elite" prospects for a LOOGY, which is what Sherrill is to the rest of MLB.

And George would cost us serious arbitration $$$ for the next two seasons while we waited for the team to develop. At best, he would be in his last year of team control in 2011, just as the rest of the team is ready to contend.

Andy did good here.

Almost feels like Andy got "rent-a-closer-for-the-rest-of-the-year" value in return for George rather than keeper closer/set up man value in return for George. I say almost cause the guys we got in return are certainly a step up...but not much when you consider proven lefty closers are very, very hard to find.

I also would have kept him rather than deal him for two longer term prospects. Like Gil Arenas says about his team, I too am tired of living in the "projects". Seems like that is all we have on our baseball team lately.

Almost feels like Andy got "rent-a-closer-for-the-rest-of-the-year" value in return for George rather than keeper closer/set up man value in return for George. I say almost cause the guys we got in return are certainly a step up...but not much when you consider proven lefty closers are very, very hard to find.

I also would have kept him rather than deal him for two longer term prospects. Like Gil Arenas says about his team, I too am tired of living in the "projects". Seems like that is all we have on our baseball team lately.

Wow, some seriously delusional people on here.

I don't know which LA fans you guys are reading, but TrueBlueLA is tearing out their hair over this, and can't believe how much they gave up.

We got a 3B prospect who started the year as the #8 prospect in the LA system and has hit better than projected. Most analysts would put him as the #3 or so positional prospect in their system now.

We also get a 21-year-old pitcher who had a sub-5.00 ERA in a league known for eating pitchers alive. Chris Tillman only managed a 5.40 or so ERA in that league, and the Dodgers' affiliate home park is a bandbox. He had a 2.43 K/BB ration in A+, and in his first two starts in AA has a 5.00 K/BB.

Reality says George Sherrill is a 32-year-old lefty specialist who's a closer only because he's on one of the worst teams in baseball without a better option. You don't get "elite" prospects for a LOOGY, which is what Sherrill is to the rest of MLB.

And George would cost us serious arbitration $$$ for the next two seasons while we waited for the team to develop. At best, he would be in his last year of team control in 2011, just as the rest of the team is ready to contend.

Andy did good here.

Frank: I agree that most of the pitchers you named didn't work out, but they didn't cost us much of anything, either. They were part of an attempt to fill in a nearly empty rotation.

To others: I realize that the last ten years of losing have put a damper on things, but let's try to evaluate the new front office based on their work, not whatever happened long ago. Let's put it this way: if Sherrill were on another team, would you trade any of our top prospects for him? Tillman, Matusz, Arrieta, Wieters? Of course not. That's how you end up with a team with Kris Benson, David Segui, Marty Cordova, etc.

We got someone who might be our 3B for a long time (if he improves his defense) and another pitching prospect who could be in the back of the rotation someday. I like Sherrill and his flat brim, but this was a good trade for a team in our situation.

One of the classic tactics of someone losing a debate is to change the argument topic to something else. We were discussing this trade and Slugger wants to change to an overall indictment of Peter Angelos. I'm not going to sit here an defend Angelos. I think he ran the franchise into the ground. He seems to have allowed Andy the latitude to put it back on the right track, however, and I am happy about that. I'm not grateful to Angelos; it's about time. In my view, today's trade was just one more step in the right direction.

~~Isn't ironic how you and the rest of Peter Angelo's army of posters wait until all the true fans who see their team becoming a reflection of the Pittsburgh Pirates post, to only pick apart their comments.~~

Actually no, it isnt ironic. I would suggest you look up the definition of the word but I am sure your brain is still hurting from that cross sport adventure I put it through.

~~How long can you keep defending the moves made by a filthy rich business man who could not give a rats behind about being a fan?~~

I have been in the same room with Angelos and he doesnt look or smell filthy to me. As for the rats behind, he did much more. He put up millions to keep the team in town when that was in doubt. I know it hardly matches the sacrifice you make in making attacking, negative, angry inch posts daily but he risked millions. You only risk those two last brain cells.

~~How long will it take~~

7 inches or two city blocks. I havent decided yet

~~before people like you~~

ahh people like you . . . gotta love when haters pull out that one.

~~will see the light~~

let there be light!

~~and realize that he is just buying time?~~

wow, he really IS rich if he can afford to buy time. Or did you just mean the magazine?

~~Do you really think that they're building a dynasty here?~~

Sometimes I think they are building a dynasty. Sometimes I think they are building an empire. Sometimes I am convinced they are building a megalopolis. Last night I had a nightmare they were building a transformer that changed from a hot dog vendor to a designated hitter.

~~They're plan is to make the playoffs perhaps once in the next 3 years, and keep dangling that in front of us for another 10.~~

Sure beats the nonsense YOU are dangling in front of us.

~~I'm not delusional like you are~~

No, I am sure you are delusional in your own very special way.

Pete -

Like some of the others here, I need to hear this trade explained a little more to me.

Sherrill has good performance for low $$. He's a steal for anyone. He's also 32 and doesn't fit into our immediate future, so trading him makes sense. High value for the short term. I get it.

Bell is the 17th ranked minor league 3B prospect. Billy Rowell is ahead of him, and no one is talking about him playing 3rd any time soon. Bell's career fielding % is .899.

I was disappointed not to hear any speculation about a possible B Rob for Jake Fox trade. Considering the number of ex-Cubs on our team, this seemed great for both sides. Promote Turner to 2nd, Fox plays 3rd, Cubs get their 2B.

I guess I was expecting at least one AAA or semi-ready major leaguer...again, would like to hear what Andy says and I hope the press (hint hint) ask about Bell's defense and ranking.

thetruth: I think the idea that the O's are perpetually rebuilding made sense a few years ago. But with Markakis, Jones, and Reimold in the OF, Wieters behind the plate, and Bergesen and Tillman in the rotation, we might finally be moving out of the projects. Not to mention Matusz, Arrieta, and now Bell coming in behind them.

Pete,

I think the trade is fine, we have an up and comer with some pop in his bat and he switch hits, and Dave's son has done fine and will be a nice addition as well. As another blogger wrote, this is a sign that 2010 is going to be another 2009. I however don't believe Melvin will be back, and Huff might be the best of the 1B free agents anyway! So get used to Wigginton and Huff on the corners for 2010. Yeah, it makes getting to .500 next to impossible, but REMEMBER: Peter Angelos is going to get his checkbook when the time is right, that would be the third full moon of the month following a 12 game winning streak by the O's! NOT

They didn't land Elbert. That makes it a lousy deal.

Steve Johnson is the son of Dave Johnson, analyst, former player, and overall nice guy.

You know what they say about nice guys.

i guess we should have gotten manny ramierez and klayton kershaw back for a guy who is seen by everyone else in the league as a SETUP MAN. We made out in this trade, two prospects a guy who is a powerhitting 3B or 1B and a pitching prospect who is projected to be a back end starter or at worst a reliever.

actually research a subject before you cry and you may feel alot better about this move and others. most EXperts have said the Dodgers OVERPAID for SHerril by the way

I am not a huge fan of the move. But I have no idea what other offers MacPhail was getting for Flat Breezy.

But I do know that no closer has even been traded for much more then spare parts.

Another view of the trade from SI.com


Trade Talk.Buzz leading up to July 31 non-waiver deadline.
Dodgers gave up too much for Sherrill

Views195Comments0Posted by: Cliff Corcoran08:16 PM ET 07.30 Share ..I don't understand why so many people seem to think the Dodgers need pitching. No, Jason Schmidt doesn't appear to be the answer as the fifth starter, but as my colleague Tim Marchman explained in his own inimitable way on Tuesday, simply moving Jeff Weaver into the rotation would be enough, given the Dodgers' comfortable lead in the NL West (seven games entering Thursday's action) and the fact that teams only need four starters in the postseason.

The Dodgers have the second-best team ERA in the majors (behind the Giants), and the third-best relief ERA in the game (3.37). According to Baseball Prospectus' win-expectancy-based metric WXRL, the Dodgers' bullpen has been the best in the major leagues this. True, they've lost Ronald Belisario, who was having a fine season before a drunk-driving arrest and elbow trouble derailed him, but Belisario was just sixth on the team in WXRL and the other top seven Dodgers relievers in that category remain on the 25-man roster.

So why did they just trade two solid prospects to the Orioles for closer George Sherrill?

I expect there are two reasons. First, Joe Torre likes to have a lefty in his bullpen and rookie Brent Leach has had a rough July, giving up a total of seven runs in four of his last seven outings for a 31.50 ERA over that short span. Hong-Chih Kuo only just returned from three months on the DL due to elbow problems. Torre thus lacks a lefty he feels he can trust. Second, the Dodgers are eyeing another NLCS matchup against the Phillies, who just ratcheted up their chances of getting that far by adding Cliff Lee to their rotation. Three of the big guns in the Philly batting order -- Chase Utley, Ryan Howard, and Raul Ibañez -- are left-handed, and Howard is especially susceptible to left-handed pitching (.182/.265/.297 on the season vs. .322/.405/.695 against righties).

There's a certain logic to that, but it's tenuous. Good pitchers can get good hitters out no matter what arm they throw with, and good hitters can hit good pitchers no matter what arm they throw with. Utley, for example, is hitting .286/.407/.541 against lefties this year, a bit below his production against righties, but only a bit. Ibañez is hitting .310/.379/.680 against lefties this year, which is a bit better than his line against righties. Sherrill has been unbelievably dominant against lefties this year (.133/.200/.156 on the season, or 6-for-45 with just one extra base hit, a double), but the rejuvenated Guillermo Mota has been nearly as good, posting a reverse split with lefties hitting .188/.289/.250 against him (12-for-65, just four extra-base hits, all doubles). Lefties have also hit just .229/.309/.313 against Ramon Troncoso, whose slight reverse split is closer to even than Mota's more extreme split.

Given the Dodgers' lack of regular-season need for relief help and the fact that Utley and Ibañez are not intimidated by lefty throwers, it seems to me that the Dodgers have acquired Sherrill to stop Howard and lefty pinch-hitters Matt Stairs and Greg Dobbs, who unlike last year are now complimented by righty bench bats Ben Francisco and John Mayberry Jr.

The 32-year-old Sherrill certainly will have value beyond this season given that he'll remain under team control beyond this season and is well established as a reliable lefty reliever, but it's debatable how much more valuable he will be than the 26-year-old Leach or the 27-year-old Kuo, neither of whom is making as much as a half a million dollars this year.

So what did the Dodgers give up to avoid a replay of last year's back-breaking Stairs homer? Too much.

Steven Johnson is a solid if uninspiring right-handed starter who, at age 21, has continued to impress having just made the jump to Double-A. He's not a big loss for the Dodgers, who have a tremendous young duo in their rotation in Chad Billingsley and Clayton Kershaw and the money to fill in behind them with reliable veterans, and he's not guaranteed to make a dent with the Orioles, who despite their dreadful major league staff have a farm rich with pitching prospects. Still, he's a decent throw-in and adds to the pitching depth in the Baltimore system.

The reason the Orioles should be clicking their heels over this deal, and Dodgers fans should hot under the collar, is Josh Bell. He's not true blue-chipper, but as a 22-year-old switch-hitting third baseman who was hitting .296/.386/.497 in Double-A this season, he has a high ceiling and fills a big hole in their organization. Bell's defense at the hot corner could use some work, but he's already shown an ability to improve in the field. Meanwhile, he receives top marks for his power, which suggests he could carry first base should he need to slide across the diamond. With top young talent in the outfield and behind the plate, Bell gives the O's a big bat for their infield and gets them that much closer to a lineup that can swing with the big boys in the AL East. Similarly, the Dodgers just lost a player who appeared to be on his way toward filling an organizational hole, be it in the wake of the 35-year-old Casey Blake at third or in place of the disappointing James Loney at first base. For a player who projects as a major league starter and potential middle-of-the-order bat in the near future, the Dodgers didn't get nearly enough, nor did they address a significant need. Before this trade, a playoff exit would have been disappointing, now it will be unacceptable.

if fate would have it and the dodgers make it to the world series.and wind up playing the yankees. he just might be the guy to put the yankees away. he sure wasn't going to go anywhere with the orioles. i say good luck to him.

Hey there "Anonymous" Angelos fan or Horseshoe or whatever you call yourself,

Thanks for proving the points of the very post you were replying to. I was right about your type and your admiration of Angelos. Would not surprise me if he signs your paycheck.

My brain is actually amused with your pathetic attempt to dismiss valid points by using tasteless retort you perceive to be humorous.

At least I have brain cells. Your brain cells have been washed away by the propaganda you subscribe to. I'm capable of filtering truth from BS. You are incapable of doing so because your brain is a pile of BS.

McPhail got snookered on this one. This is the type of deal that could have been done in the off-season as Sherrill was going to lose value due to lack of usage the next 2 months. His peak value was now: 4 year minor leaguer and an A ball pitcher are very poor value. McPhail must have taken advice from the fire sale GM of the Pirates for this one.
Boo Hiss!!!

What a great deal! Superb! Getting good value for an unnecessary piece on a rebuilding 70 win team, and a 32 year old reliever at that! Unbelievable...Another young arm in the mix with tools, including some know-how. And a real young 3b prospect who can hit! Are you kidding me?? This is exactly the kind of deal the O's should be making. AM, Mr Practical, sizes things up and pulls the trigger. How could anyone be trashing this trade? Cliff Lee, last years CY Young winner, was traded for prospects, with the Phils
holding on to some coveted minor leaguers. AM does another great job.
And how about Pie today? Couple of hits, rbi, and they got him for nothing.
All you naysayers, present your resumes before blasting the baseball guy who knows what he's doing! Go O's- see you in 2012! And I mean that in a good way. There's work to do, but the pieces are falling into place.

looks like the os made the move to go deeper into the draft playoffs while the dodgers go for the real playoffs...

I like George Sherrill, but I like this deal. You have to know when to hold them and when to throw them. Flat Breezy is a great guy and all, but he was not going to close out game 7 in the WS for the O's in the next two years [age 34] anyway.

It's not 2010, and probably not 2011. 2012 is more like it. You have to give Tillman, Matusz, Bergy, et all time to mature at the big league level. Sure their ceiling is high, and 2012 is when Tillman etc, including Josh Bell just start to see the light at the MLB level.

Andy's sights are correct and correctly timed. That's why he signed Roberts and Markakis to long term deals.

He knows what he's doing.

Bell seems like a project to me. Does not hit righties well and subpar fielder. May be a salary dump.

I agree that the pieces are falling into place for the future. I see alot of young talent in this organization but I don't know how much this deal will help. Time will tell.

I do see losing 100 games as a real possibility this year. We have no one to replace Sherril. No lead will be safe.

Pete,

What is your opinion on revenue sharing in baseball? From watching Pitt, Cle and Bmore it seems like small market teams need something more like a cap to be able to compete, keep players and build. Baltimore and Pitt are good sports towns and have won Superbowls and Stanley cups etc but cant make it in baseball. I think somethings gotta change but whats your take?


.............................................................................................
Pete's reply: I agree that the game would be better served with a more balanced economy, but don't know how they are going to get there.

~~Hey there "Anonymous" Angelos fan or Horseshoe or whatever you call yourself,~~

I dont "call myself". I put in the name I use just like you and sometimes it registers and sometimes it doesnt. I am not the only one with this problem.

~~Thanks for proving the points of the very post you were replying to.~~

That where someone is drafted has no bearing on how good they will ultimately be? You are quite welcome.

~~ I was right about your type ~~

nice try but you made your smarmy comment about "one's type" to someone else, not me. Again, that poor brain of yours isnt up to the task you ask of it.

~~admiration of Angelos~~

nowhere did I express admiration of Angelos (although I do admire his legal skill, his philanthropy, and his bio of achieving success from meager beginnings). I merely made fun of your obvious jealousy of his ability to achieve a level of success you cannot even dream of.

~~Would not surprise me if he signs your paycheck.~~

actually no one signs my paycheck, in fact a small fraction of my income is W2 related. But so what if I did work for Angelos? What if that IS "my type" . . . whether you are slurring lawyers or Greeks or whatever class of people you feel it is ok to slur as obviously "not your type."

~~My brain is actually amused with your pathetic attempt to dismiss valid points by using tasteless retort you perceive to be humorous.~~

There was NOTHING valid about the draft reference. It has ZERO bearing on the value of Bell or Johnson. THAT was the point of the Unitas reference which you couldnt quite wrap your amused brain around. And there is NOTHING valid about your making these grandiose proclamations about kids you have never seen play a single game.

~~At least I have brain cells.~~

lol and I bet you think you have maturity too . . . I can only say NUH-UH!!

~~Your brain cells have been washed away by the propaganda you subscribe to.~~

And just what subscription are YOU selling?? Hatemongers Weekly? Opinions Based on Nothing Tribune?

~~I'm capable of filtering truth from BS~~

which would mean you are aware the posts you dish out here daily are all BS and post them anyway?

~~You are incapable of doing so because your brain is a pile of BS.~~

grow up lol

Totally unrelated but does anybody think today Jose Canseco was talking about Cal being that roid user in the Hall of Fame?
I dont like listening to that bum but....

I don't see that much of a drop off with sticking Jimmy Johnson as the closer.

But with Melvin Mora gone next year and zero prospects until now, this a major win for next year and for many years.

Being a losing team with a solid closer is a wasteful luxury. We survived the loss of BJ Ryan, this is no different.

PANIC IN BIRDLAND!

let's evaluate this in 2 years when we are looking at how well the minor leauguers turn out, and how well Sherrill's arm holds up. We are probably more than a year away. so Sherrill would have been a gamble to keep with his value remaining high.

Good trade:
Closers are expendable - we have a vast array of young pitchers who will fill that void one way or another. Might take awhile to figure out who but someone will step in and do well. My guess is JJ. But we'll see. So we got "probably" our 3B of the future and maybe a "sleeper" of a future starter or BP guy. Keeping Sherill would only ensure a few more W's for this season, maybe, which does nothing for our future. Andy has not failed yet in any deal and I don't believe he has done so with this one. If there was no trade all the complainers out there would have said just that, "Why no trade?"

Peter,

Any chance Koji becomes to closer when he comes off the DL if JJ cant get it done? He was a closer in Japan..

This trade is hard on the fans but it might work out. Also we might be able to salvage Koji as a closer or setup man and have JJ step it up

Pete,

I heard we are trying to trade Mark Hendrickson to the Rockies. Any truth to that?


.............................................................................................
Pete's reply: I've heard some Hendrickson chatter, but I think those teams just want him for free, and he's only got a third or so of his small salary left, so why not keep him while he's making a contribution.

For all trying to rationalize this trade because Sherill was old at age 32, consider:

Dennis Eckersley converted to closer at age 33.

John Smoltz converted to closer: 34.

If I'm Georgie, I'm chomping at the bit to prove all the doubters in LA and BAL wrong. Hey LA, remember the original FAT TUB OF GOO Terry Forster? His bald-headed step child is coming to Hollywood with his flat hat in tow.

A great move for Joe Torre, as well, with Utley, Howard, Ibanez stepping to the plate in late innings. Phillies have too many lefties (Lee, Hamels, Happ) and The Dodgers crush lefties. Looks like another WS for Manny.

Can't wait to see Georgie in the World Series! Thats when I can say, "How come the Orioles can't get guys like that?"

On the surface it appears as though we could have gotten a little more in return but I have faith in Andy Mcphail and will believe he see's something in these two prospects. If in a year or so if Steve Johnson turns out to be solid major league pitcher and the sluggers stroke develops and fits the dimensions at Camden Yards then we will be singing a different tune. Hate to see George go though, but at age 32 and arbitration eligibility right around the corner and current state of the O's....well that's business.

Key issue is can Johnson fill the role as closer? What do you think.?


.............................................................................................
Pete's reply: Yes, I do. He has given up a couple of home runs at inopportune times, but he's a talented guy with good stuff.

you know who else was a 3b taken in the 13th round (402 overall).... albert pujols

if brandon snyder stays at third base i can see the transition now. a power hitter that plays average defense due to his throwing inaccuracies that switches to first base. that would provide the best opportunity for bell to concentrate more on switch hitting and fielding.

you know who else was a 3b taken in the 13th round (402 overall).... albert pujols

if brandon snyder stays at third base i can see the transition now. a power hitter that plays average defense due to his throwing inaccuracies that switches to first base. that would provide the best opportunity for bell to concentrate more on switch hitting and fielding.

you know who else was a 3b taken in the 13th round (402 overall).... albert pujols

if brandon snyder stays at third base i can see the transition now. a power hitter that plays average defense due to his throwing inaccuracies that switches to first base. that would provide the best opportunity for bell to concentrate more on switch hitting and fielding.

go o's

Keep him at third and Synder at first. No need for a closer on this team anyway.

Everyone on this post needs to settle down a bit. A 32 year old pitcher who wills himself to be successful on a bad team is hard to give up, but if Bell turns into a starter this is well worth it. Building for 2010/11 and beyond.

Dodgers are just got a lot more popular in bmore!

If one of these young guys ends up with the O's in 2011 I think we'll all think this deal was the right one to make. Building a team that competes from year to year requires the nucleus of the team to reach their prime at approximately the same time. I've never thought of G.S. as a top notch closer; in fact, there are times when he's very difficult to watch (especially towards the end of the year). G.S. has already peeked and is likely on his way down, and I'd never expect him to be around when this team reaches its maximum potential. But its likely one of these new prospects will be around when that time comes and if Bell continues to improve its much more likely he'll be a heavy contributor. Good trade if you ask me.

Pete, I think this is the kind of trade the Dodgers will look back on in a few years and regret when Sherrill is long gone from their organization and Bell is hitting 5th to protect Wieters. But, please, tell me he is not a relative of Juan "Tito" Bell, the so-called future replacement of Cal Ripken in the late 1980s?

What a joke! The Dodgers must be laughing their a$$e$ off. Giving up Sherrill for 2 so-so prospects who might be ready in 2011. I sure hope Johnson Jr is a better pitcher than his father. I guess the only option we have is to sign prospects since no veteran in their right mind would want to come to such a dysfunctional organization. Good luck George! At least you now have a shot at going to the playoffs.

I think it was not a good deal for the Orioles. Josh Bell has had a steel glove in the past that was his big knock. So is he really going to be a good everyday third baseman? That is a question that is 8 miles high in the air. So that part of the trade is not good for the Orioles, because Sherrill has proven himself in two areas, one as a left handed specialist the other as a premier closer. So it comes down to Johnson for Sherrill, even though some might think that is crazy, but really Bell is more than a year off. Happy as can be that Steve is in the Orioles system now, great story first Bumbry now Johnson and to top it off a Flacco, all good stories, but this is the big leagues and we do not have a closer. I think your right Pete, Mora or Huff will be here next season, maybe even both. I would not want my corner infield to be Bell and Snyder.

The trade sucks

The dumb ass Baltimore fan strikes again. I seriously can't wait until football season starts and the Steelers start kicking in the Ravens' a@&. Comparing Sherrill to Eckersley and Smoltz? You even realize the 2 were dominating starters before they became closers. I love how in 2 seasons all of a sudden people think Sherrill is an elite closer. He's not even going to be in the role of closer w/ the Dodgers. If you think Wood would have come in a trade for Sherrill you live in a dream world.

Pete, What do you think the next if any trade might be? Could D. Baez or A. Huff be traded for the famous PTBNL???? I personaly would like to see that idiot Buck Martinez traded to any other club so I don't have to listen to his winey drivel ever again! More Palmer is what MASN needs


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Pete's reply: They won't trade Huff for a PTBNL, because he might get them draft picks as a free agent.

Here's my 1.3 cents, adjusting for the economy:

I don't love the deal, but I would have made it. Bell's a legitimate if flawed prospect. I'd be surprised if Sherrill has this much value this winter, much less next year. Without steroids, players are declining at more normal rates.

Maybe the O's will get nothing out of this deal. But I would also bet that Sherrill won't be worth much in 2011, which is still the prime objective.

Trades are risky. This was a risk worth taking.

O’s fans seem to have developed Stockholm syndrome from the AngelO’s years… I cant believe this trade is making people excited on here.. What a joke!

This trade is terrible. I was never a big Sherrill fan, but he was productive. I would have rather seen a trade with the Angels to get Brandon Wood - at least I get the feeling he's ready for the Majors. A kid, 22 years old that needs to lose 30 pounds to play, would scare the hell out of me. And with the prospect of Jim Johnson closing (16 straight appearances yielding 1 or more hit), it's bad short and long term.

Horsesh.. ,

Clearly a pathetic demonstration of incoherence on your retorts. You are incapable of organizing your thoughts into a paragraph that makes sense or proves/disproves a point. You chose disjointed words or a sentence as topics for your feeble argument.

It would not be surprising for you to reply in the same fashion to this post as well. I am sad to say that lowering myself to your level, might have just lowered my IQ by a couple of points. I apologize to the rest of the posters here for even giving you the time of day, however your ignorance is intolerable.

Horsesh.. ,

Clearly a pathetic demonstration of incoherence on your retorts. You are incapable of organizing your thoughts into a paragraph that makes sense or proves/disproves a point. You chose disjointed words or a sentence as topics for your feeble argument.

It would not be surprising for you to reply in the same fashion to this post as well. I am sad to say that lowering myself to your level, might have just lowered my IQ by a couple of points. I apologize to the rest of the posters here for even giving you the time of day, however your ignorance is intolerable.

There are 2 factors that will prevent the Orioles from ever winning anything significant. Number 1 is that there is no salary cap so basically we find talent for competitive teams with money like LA or NY and even for some reason if we are on the cusp of sneaking into playoff territory where we don’t belong the team is still owned by a man with a history of making epic blunders and recently won an award by Sports Illustrated as the worst owner in sports. Sports writers and fans need to step up and question this Orioles front office.

Slugger,

Pipe down boy. You're making a fool of yourself.

Shame

Ridiculous hysteria from the George Sherrill and Luke Scott are baseball Gods-Matt Wieters and Adam Jones are bums crowd. A realistic assessment says Sherrill is a good relief pitcher and the return was perfectly appropriate. Andy continues to install more and more real potential in the minor league system to replace the Fiorentinos and Majewskis of the past, who have no chance of long term success at the major league level. They are young, getting better and competing for positions with a clear channel to the bigs if they perform. Bring in the new blood.

I don't know what to think but I do trust Andy when it comes to these types of trades. The last two large trades he's made have turned out quite well for us - see Tillman, Jones, Mikolio, Sherrill, Scott, Albers, Patton - so I'm willing to give the benefit of the doubt here.

I don't care where someone was drafted. Look at Marques Colston of the Saints. I think he was a 7th rounder and is the best receiver on a potent Saints passing team. Mike Piazza was a favor pick in something like the 35th round. I actually have been going through some baseball cards from the early to mid nineties. there are a ton of "1st Round Draft Pick" cards of players I've never heard of. It doesn't matter where you're picked. It matters how good you end up being.

Checking in from Ohio,were I learned of the awful trade that McPhail just made.Let's see,we trade an All Star closer,for the Dodger's 8th best and 15th best prospects.The more Andy trades the worse they get.That means we still won't have a corner outfielder for either spot unless we sign Huff or Mora.It's not good when your best option going into next year is resigning Aubrey Huff.I posted a week or so ago that the eventuality of this happening was possible and most likely.You can look it up.For those of you who think we are going to win next year,think again.In my opinion this is a horrible trade for everybody but Dave Johnson.What are we going to do with the arms we already have.I'll believe we have a shot when Angeloser buys the bats.Until then we just weakened our team.My opinion of McPhail has dropped drastically this year.The Bedard trade was good but this trade weakens that.The Tejada trade was average.Getting anything for Hernandez was a plus so he couldn't lose there.Getting Eaton,Hill,and Pie were stupid moves.Remember folks we got the Dodgers 8th ranked and 15th ranked prospects,not exactly an awe inspiring deal.Quick can anybody tell me who the Orioles 8th and 15th ranked prospects are?Not you,pete,and no looking it up.Didn't think so.Jim Johnson as our closer that ought to be fun.Still think we finish close to 100 losses this year.Did ya miss me Pete?How's the Achilles?

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Pete's reply: Jeez Burt, I know we disagree sometimes, but I didn't want you to move to Toledo.

So far I like the trade, Its all about Josh Bell, Johnson was a bonus. I am concerned about the Closer spot though , I am not sure if Johnson can handle that role. I like someones Idea of Putting Koji as a closer or atleast auditioning him . I will feel better once we get our closer in place for next year.

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Pete's reply: I don't think Uehara as a closer next year is a wild idea.

I think we got about an even deal on both sides. I don't view Sherrill as an elite closer. In fact after last year's second half and the beginning of this year, we got exactly what we needed from him. Work out your mechanics, go on a run of sucessful saves, lower the era to the low 2's and now you're our only real bargaining chip. We should be happy all those things fell into place. I don't think Sherrill will be consistantly dominating so I really believe that we sold high on this one. For George he gets to go to a winner, which he wanted. And the Dodgers get a lefty specialist that they needed, pretty much specifically for the Phillies. Win, win.
Of course Wood from the Angels was the most attractive option but obviously they weren't going to make the deal. MacPhail waited it out until exactly 24 hours before the deadline so this must have been the best deal. And a good indication of what the experts and scouts paid to evaluating talent think of George Sherrill.
Bell certainly fits what we need and Johnson could still offer something. We simply don't know right now. I like the comparison to the NFL draft and I see the parrallels. Remember everyone freaking out when the Raven's drafted Ogden over Laurance Phillips? That one worked out ok.
On a personal note, I rarely find myself getting sentimental these days, but I was glad to be listening to Dave Johnson on the radio when the news broke, to hear his reaction, and how excited and emotional he was about his son coming home to his team.

Why do people fixating on the one All-Star game Sherill made. He made the All-Star simply because the Orioles had to have at least one. Do you people honestly believe this guy is still an All-Star if he stays with the Dodgers? God, no. Just because he appeared in one All-Star game doesn't make him an "All-Star closer". The fact we got such young players for a relief pitcher is well worth the trade. I just love how Baltimore fans think they know more than the scouts that actually watch these players.

Oh and Slugger, the man who pitched a perfect game and retired 45 straight batters at one point (Buehrle); 38th Round Draft Pick. Really you need to stop talking out your rear end.

Hey Slugger did you really call George Sherril the top closer in baseball the past two years?

This was a very fair trade, anyone who is complaining is doing so just to complain.

I felt that trading Sherrill would be a good move if we received a great return. The 8th best prospect from the Dodgers is not enough. If there were 10 teams we should have held out and received a prospect that actually prjects to fill one of our voids. Bell is an awful fielder and most likely projects as a first basemen.

I actually felt sad and still feel sad about the news. I like George and I can only imagine this will more hurt the morale of the team.

On a good note maybe if Johnson makess it to the bigs soon, Dave will stop talking about his awful career and start talking about his son.

Just a thought...

If a 21 year old male came up and punched you in the face would you say "Awwwww...,,that KID just punched me, that is so cute"

You would probably say...."That MAN - That DUDE - That GUY - That ADULT just punched me"

They are not KIDS people.

It is only a fair trade if you want to save money, and that is exactly what the Orioles want. Whoever says closers are a dime a dozen is crazy. Left handed closers are even harder to find. I love the spin of this deal with Steve Johnson coming to the Orioles but really look at Bell's scouting report and you will notice that he has made 81 errors in 308 minor league games at 3B, that is not even a .900 fielding percentage. He has a erratic arm to go along with his lack of fielding skills. He has to get a lot better to be considered MLB material.

Someone mentioned Rowell, FYI - He has been converted to a right fielder. So we still do not have a first baseman or third basemen anywhere close to being ready.

Get ready the Orioles will keep Huff and Mora here for one more year. Maybe the best thing out of this trade will be the great local story of Steve Johnson, instead of the dumping of salary.


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Pete's reply: Coach, I gotta ask, are you saying the Orioles are too cheap to keep Sherrill for $5 million in arbitration next year but are willing to spend nearly $20 million to roll over Huff and Mora?

Just a quick note about Johnson:

Why people say McPhail (who is a professional) is going to go out of his way to ensure a local product is included in the trade is crap. He has proven to be very professional and diligent in his workings.
Second thing, every is bashing Johnson as sub-par, not even a legitimate prospect based on 2 things: where he was drafted and his ERA. First of all, where he was drafted? Jesus, we all know that has no weight in how they turn out so if someone brings that up you do not know baseball. Sherril was in the international league and really was lucky he got a shot in the majors. Not everyone can be a #1 pick. And tha was when 5 years ago?
and his ERA? wow, 4.25 in the California league, a hitters league? And he was 20-21 at that time. Tillmans ERA in the California league was over 4.00 roughly when we got him. Now he was a better prospect, but I would not judge him by that yet

George was a good "chemistry" guy, and someone the O's certainly could build around, but he's also the only player the O's deemed to have value and able to trade per their rebuilding. What McPhail did was not gut the team, he took one step backwards to allow the team to keep moving forward - the core is still here, and still developing, and bullpen help is where we have some depth. It's not going to be hard to fill the roster spot of George, so there isn't a gaping hole. We got a 3rd base prospect that we can either promote ro flip depending on his progress, and we can also always sign a free agent to replace Melvin, whom I sincerely hope is not back next year.

On the flip side, I think "chemistry" guys are really important to rebuilding clubs. George's mindset wasn't saddled down by a losing mentality, and Andy didn't have to move him. He could havd had the same trade value next season as well, since he would still be under control through 2011.

I would have hoped a major-league level guy could have come back in the deal. Sherrill proved he had that type of value. I think the Dodgers got the best of this one, but let's see how it plays out over the next year or so.

Pete - maybe they're slotting Chris Ray back into the closer's role in their plans, whic made this an easier deal to swallow?


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Pete's reply: Maybe, but Chris will be one of the right-handed setup guys immediately upon his return.

Just read thisanalysis on SI.com (credit: Cliff Corcoran): The reason the Orioles should be clicking their heels over this deal, and Dodgers fans should hot under the collar, is Josh Bell.... Bell gives the O's a big bat for their infield and gets them that much closer to a lineup that can swing with the big boys in the AL East.... For a player who projects as a major league starter and potential middle-of-the-order bat in the near future, the Dodgers didn't get nearly enough, nor did they address a significant need. (http://www.fannation.com/si_blogs/mlb_trade_talk/posts/72521?eref=fromSI)

Most of the negative comments are based on knee-jerk emotion because Sherrill is a likeable guy and a lot of the younger fan base have grown attached to him. These fans have short attention spans and a near-delusional expectation that any trade will satisfy their juvenile lust for immediate gratification. This team is coming from a long, dark place in the depths and isn't going to rise to the heights overnight. If you think the Orioles are going to contend next year, think again. 2010 will be a year of seasoning for the young pitching staff and the young position players that have come up. With another year of experience, Josh Bell and Brandon Snyder may be the the missing pieces that complete the puzzle and put the team over the top. Sherrill is 32 years old and not the kind of talent that gets you a premiere, majors-ready position player in return. If you think he is, you simply aren't being realistic. I liked the trade a lot.

A lot has already been said, passionatly in many cases, but this deal needs a little thought. I think this is a bit of a gamble, but what did the o's REALLY do? Is Sherrill really a ML closer? Didn't everyone think he should have been traded LAST year? Bell could be an excellent player, Johnson could be a useful pitcher..AND Sherrill may explode on a contending team. The O's got younger, got a pitcher for a pitcher, and added a young, powerhitting 3rd baseman. Between Bell and Brandon Waring now in Frederick, the O's could have a 3rd baseman, 1st baseman or both. Time will tell. When we traded Bedard and Tejada there were posters who insisted we made terrible trades. How about Turner, now hitting .300 at Norfolk? Could he be next yrs 3rd baseman? Again, lets see how it goes, so far MacPhail has done REAL well for the O's.

Good move for the club. Sherril is 32, overweight and to me is kind of a fluke. Don't get me wrong, I like the guy and he did well for the birds but how will he hold up physically over the next couple of years? Smart to get a couple of prospects now then have him worth nothing down the road.

One question I'd like to make that I haven't seen already posted:

How much will Sherrill's absence hurt the development of all the O's young starters?

The fact of the matter is, Chris Ray isn't closing this year, and we can't point to anyone who can right now. How many blown saves and leads are we going to have the rest of the year? How is that not going to demoralize the young, developing staff?

This is what the Nationals did and look at what happened there!

I think that saving 51 of the last 100 games that the Orioles won, says he is probably a pretty good closer.

Yes some people thought he should be traded, but the Oriole fans also wanted Huff to pack up after the 2007 season..

The fact is Sherrill is a proven commodity, the others are suspects. Really Waring strikes out often, Turner does not hit with enough power to be a corner infielder and if the Orioles are going to be competitive in 2010 they need to acquire someone who can consistently drive in runs. If we are not planning to be competitive next year, they should have never given Roberts a long term deal. The O's are good in the outfield and solid up the middle at catcher, second and short, but weak at third and first right now. A lot has been fixed but by next spring they need to fix the weakness of clutch hitting. I have always liked Mora, but his best days are behind him and Huff seems to be coming out of his two month slump, but you cannot win that way. There is no one in our minor league system now that will hit 35-40 home runs and drive in 120 in the major leagues. The Orioles management needs to correct this, I do not know how much more the fans can endure.

I think that saving 51 of the last 100 games that the Orioles won, says he is probably a pretty good closer.

Yes some people thought he should be traded, but the Oriole fans also wanted Huff to pack up after the 2007 season..

The fact is Sherrill is a proven commodity, the others are suspects. Really Waring strikes out often, Turner does not hit with enough power to be a corner infielder and if the Orioles are going to be competitive in 2010 they need to acquire someone who can consistently drive in runs. If we are not planning to be competitive next year, they should have never given Roberts a long term deal. The O's are good in the outfield and solid up the middle at catcher, second and short, but weak at third and first right now. A lot has been fixed but by next spring they need to fix the weakness of clutch hitting. I have always liked Mora, but his best days are behind him and Huff seems to be coming out of his two month slump, but you cannot win that way. There is no one in our minor league system now that will hit 35-40 home runs and drive in 120 in the major leagues. The Orioles management needs to correct this, I do not know how much more the fans can endure.

Everyone seems to forget Sherrill was a "throw in" in the deal with Seattle. Give the trade a chance.

Everyone seems to forget Sherrill was a "throw in" in the deal with Seattle. Give the trade a chance.

Man, the negativity on this board never ceases to amaze.

The deal might not work out, but to get a potential middle-of-the-order hitter in Bell and a pitcher with a chance to contribute at the major league level (who has improved by leaps and bounds in the last year) in return for a 32-year-old arbitration-eligible relief pitcher is a very good deal for the Orioles.

Now, Bell isn't Evan Longoria: he mashes righties but hasn't shown much success against lefties. He's not a slick fielder (but you should check out the minor league stats of some of your favorites some time..scorers down there aren't as kind as major-league scorers.).

Anyway, you don't get sure-thing guys like Longoria in trade for a relief pitcher: doesn't happen.

The fact that we have to keep picking up other teams' prospects in trades raises the question-what in the heck have our scouts been doing the last 5 years? You mean to say there aren't any 1b/3b at all worthy of consideration and we have to rely on other teams? We've been picking around the top for the last 10 years and all we have to show for is apparently marginal players at key power spots. In that regard, we are likely going to be even uglier in '10 because presuming Mora is brought back(UGH) he isn't going to be a force, Huff seems to have regressed far faster that anyone expected but he might have to come back out of necessity and Wiggy is signed for another year(double UGG).

Matt, Well said. Ray is no where close to the pitcher he was four years ago. A young staff needs the bullpen guys to finish games.

I do not call it negative talk, I call it being a realist. The Orioles do not have anyone in their system to step in and be a run producer. I am as positive as you can be, but I also know baseball pretty well, and this trade did not make us stronger in our weak areas, and we have just created another weakness with Sherrill leaving. Who knows maybe Baez can close games, maybe Johnson, maybe Ray will get back to his 2006 form or Hendrickson can get it done. We are so close, but taking steps backwards is not a god thing.

Bell is not a good defensive player. As mentioned you will not get a Longoria, who was lights out defensively in the minors, in exchange for a relief pitcher, so you have to go free agency. If the Orioles do not address the three weaknesses (First, Third and now Closer), they will lose more fans. That is not negative, it is a fact that has been proven over time, all you have to do is look at the attendance for games over the last ten years, and you see a 50% drop, it was slipping even before the Expos moved to Washington. The fact is the fans are not watching on TV also, so what are the fans doing now? My guess is waiting for football season, and the successful Ravens franchise to hit the field again.

With all that said I am not saying that McPhail is doing a bad job of rebuilding but the time has come to fill the holes.

Could you guys please edit these articles!!! How does a professional (and short) article contain obvious typographical errors?!!? (Won instead of Son, Their instead of there). Online reporting needs good editing too!


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Pete's reply: Sorry. Perfection is unattainable. And, generally, blogs do not have an editor. I'll try to do better.

~~Horsesh.. ,

Clearly a pathetic demonstration of incoherence on your retorts. You are incapable of organizing your thoughts into a paragraph that makes sense or proves/disproves a point. You chose disjointed words or a sentence as topics for your feeble argument.

It would not be surprising for you to reply in the same fashion to this post as well. I am sad to say that lowering myself to your level, might have just lowered my IQ by a couple of points. I apologize to the rest of the posters here for even giving you the time of day, however your ignorance is intolerable.~~

Please dont blame your lack of comprehension on the structure of my posts. They are broken down point by point precisely to assist those of you with such comprehension problems understand the simple points I make. I choose the form and structure of my replies, not you. I will reply in iambic pentameter or stream of conscience if the mood strikes me and Peter permits. It says plenty that you can only criticize the style of my reply and do not bother to even try to refute a single point I make. Paragraph structure does not prove or disprove a thing. It is merely a v2ehicle.

I am sorry to hear that you lost a couple points of IQ. I was not aware that one could have a negative IQ. You are truly amazing . . . in your own mind.

Thanks for your reply.

I feel very late to the party, but I like the trade and not just because of the reaction from Tom Davis and his Dave Johnson on air.

I know no one likes to hear about saving money, but getting the Dodgers to pay the entirety of the $1mil we still owe Sherrill isn't bad.

When Sherrill blew some saves he was a bum, a guy who didn't have what it took to close, and a ticking time bomb. Suddenly we're supposed to flip him for guys that aren't even on the block for a legit top 3 pitcher in Halladay. As much as I liked Sherrill, he wasn't top tier for his position, let alone premier talent in the league overall. He made the AS game because they needed pitching and who else on the O's were they going to take? We got lucky getting him and we got enough back for getting rid of him.

George Sherrill is the most overrated closer in baseball today. 4.7 ERA last season with 30+ walks in 50 some innings? Not so hot. He's doing better this season, but the O's got a steal with two early 20 prospects. Bell's going to be really good, Sherrill will tank.

I agree with most of the posters. Terrible trade. Don't understand why Andy M turned down all those much better offers. Pujols would have looked good in an Orioles uni.

Geez...I can't believe so-called 'knowledgable' O's fans think the team was fleeced here. Relievers are NOT 'prime trade meterial. George was a 'closer' in name only. He's a great situational lefty. That's it. Rebuilding teams do not have the luxury of holding on to situational lefties if they can turn them in a trade.

Even if Bell never plays an inning for the o's, this is a good deal, because he has genuine potential at a position where the O's currently have NONE.

I think this was a pretty good deal...for all the dummies out there that think we are close to contending next year....you are kidding yourself. If we get close to .500 that will be huge. Sherrill is 32 years old he is an average closer at best. He probably has another 2 good years left tops. He is going to command more money to resign, which I would rather see us spend elsewhere when we are actually contending. Closers come along all the time, there are only a few "great" closers, but tons of mediocre one, and Sherrill is mediocre.

I think it was another great move to help rebuild and get this club into contention for 2011.

I think this was a pretty good deal...for all the dummies out there that think we are close to contending next year....you are kidding yourself. If we get close to .500 that will be huge. Sherrill is 32 years old he is an average closer at best. He probably has another 2 good years left tops. He is going to command more money to resign, which I would rather see us spend elsewhere when we are actually contending. Closers come along all the time, there are only a few "great" closers, but tons of mediocre one, and Sherrill is mediocre.

I think it was another great move to help rebuild and get this club into contention for 2011.

Hey TFras,

I just checked all of the grammar, content and spelling and found 57 errors, good thing there was only one error in your post.

What do you expect from people, this is a blog, with post from everyday people, and I, I, I am everyday people, yeah yeah. Maybe you should let Sly and the Family Stone that they made grammatical errors in their gold record, number won in the charts.

Hey Pete,

Do you foresee the O's making any more trades this year, either by the deadline today, or by passing a player through waivers later?


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Pete's reply: Waiver deals are hard to make, but it's possible.

Hey Jim,

Sorry I totally disagree. They can be competitive next year, if they fix the three holes. I am not saying they will win 100 games, all I hope for is 82 to 88 wins. That will not be accomplished with deals like this. Unless they sign a third baseman and a closer that can finish games.

I would rather see them sign a free agent third baseman if there is one. You cannot have a third baseman with a fielding percentage lower than .900, that is not acceptable, and that is where Bell is at. Do you think at his age that coaching can make him into a top flight fielding third baseman? I do not think so. The kid has a erratic arm, steel glove and a weakness from the right side of the plate. He is big, but also not very fast and has been tagged as lazy in the minors, not saying it is fact but really when you are trying to show you can get to the next level, that is not a good thing to get tagged with. If Bell was the big name of the trade then it is not good, but I believe it is about saving money, maybe that is good enough, and the attention of having Steve Johnson here. Have Bell sleep with Brooks Robinson's glove under his pillow, maybe that will give him some good karma.

Pete, Sorry for the double post. Is the Sun having such a large financial issue that they cannot afford their internet hosting fee?


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Pete's reply: I have no idea why this is happening. I've asked about it and will try to find something out again.

Sometimes minies step it up when they see the big stadium at the end of the tunnel, maybe Bell will. It's stating the obvious, but we won't know the merits of this trade for a year or two. Right now, it's giving up a few months of a 32 yr. old reliever who was going to either skip town or cost a bundle. Plus, relievers are useless if you're not competitive for the first 7 or 8 innings.

I think some emotions are getting in the way of reason. Georgie was well-liked. A consistent player on a streaky team. A guy who seemed to like playing for the Os. Heck, I'm transplanted out here in Seattle and have been a Sherill fan since before the trade. I'm bummed to see him go. But I want to return the days when the Os were winners, and leveraging the short-term needs of contenders is a proven way to do it.

Pete,
What the devil is wrong with these cretins -- they have been aggressively ignorant and nasty?

Suggest you all go to ESPN.com to read Rob Neyer's take on the trade.

Then, try to dial back the negativity. Some of this piffle is really difficult to read, let alone enjoy.


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Pete's reply: Thanks for using the word "piffle." Made my day.

I like the trade. The fact that the Orioles got the #8 and #15 ranked prospects in the Dodgers minor league system is a good trade for a 32 year old relief pitcher who isn't good enough to be the closer on the Dodgers. Sherrill is a good pitcher and did a good job closing for the Orioles, but what value does a closer have on a team that can't even come close to making the post-season?

Yes, Sherrill made the All-Star team last year, but in my opinion, he doesn't have the value of a "real" All-Star closer like Rivera, Papelbon, or Nathan.

Both of these prospects are ranked higher than Brad Bergesen was a the beginning of the year. He was ranked as the Orioles 16th best prospect. Prospects are just that... some turn out to be good players, some don't, and some become pleasant surprises. We'll see...

To everyone who is freaking out: Why is a 32-year-old lefty specialist posing as a closer so important to a rebuilding ballclub that already has an arm stepping into the closer's role?

The thing that everyone is forgetting here is that George Sherrill would not, I repeat, would not, be a closer on 26 of the 30 big league teams. His only chances to close would be in Baltimore, Washington, Florida and maybe Philly. That said, it's obvious that none of the teams that were looking at him, aside from Florida, were looking at him as a closer. And since Florida wasn't going to give up a top corner infield prospect for Sherrill (ie: Logan Morrison or Mike Stanton), that option fell through.

So here we have a 32-year-old journeyman reliever who dominates lefties (.167 career OBA) and is pretty good against righties (.257 career OBA). He isn't, by any stretch of the imagination, a shut-down closer. He's just a good pitcher who's having a great year. Everyone seems to forget that Sherrill put up a 4.72 ERA with mediocre K/BB numbers last season.

Moving on, two years from now, which is the earliest this club will have a shot at contention, said 32-year-old reliever will be 34. If you're a betting man, you can't be too excited about putting money on Sherrill putting up this kind of season in 2011. Plus, you've got Jim Johnson and Kam Mickolio and maybe Chris Ray waiting in the wings. Three more talented pitchers who are also a lot younger and a lot cheaper.

So why not trade Sherrill for a 22-year-old corner infield prospect and a local developing power arm? His value is as high as it will ever be and it's not like a 90-loss team really needs to hold onto it's closer, which, by the way, is the most easily replaceable position in sports. Look at the A's. They've had something like 9 or 10 guys save 15+ games over the past 10 years. Look at the Blue Jays. B.J. Ryan fell apart and Scott Downs stepped in. Look at the Padres. They lost Trevor Hoffman and Heath Bell might be even better. I'm not trying to downplay the importance of a good man at the back of a bullpen. As an O's fan, how could I forget the biggest difference between the '97 O's and the '98 O's? That difference? Randy Myers. But to have a good closer, all you need is to do is find a good reliever, tell him he's pitching the 9th inning and let him go. Isn't that what the O's did with Sherrill?

In short, stop freaking out about this deal. In terms of future gains, Josh Bell and Steve Johnson have a chance to be much more important to this team than George Sherrill. In terms of the present, it's not like the O's were going anywhere with Sherrill. And Jim Johnson is a solid replacement.

Fin.

cb coach -

Sorry, but since when was 82 - 88 wins considered competitive in the AL East?

For your consideration, here's where 88 wins would have put the O's over the past several seasons:

2008: 4th place, 9 games back
2007: 3rd place, 8 games back
2006: 2nd place, 9 games back
2005: 3rd place, 7 games back
2004: 3rd place, 13 games back
2003: 3rd place, 13 games back
2002: 3rd place, 15 games back

And I'm just wondering. What are your three holes that need fixed? Because I see three huge holes before getting past the starting rotation and there are certainly more after that.

Really B, Really a 90 loss team does not need a closer? You want the team to lose a 100? The young starters pushing to complete games? Do you want them to feel confident and have the feeling if they have the lead going into the 7th inning that there is a good chance you can win the game? You do not think that he could not close on more than 4 of the 30 teams? That is ludicrous, check the stats.This year Sherrill is tied for 17th in saves (on a last place team), and of those players that are tied with him or ahead, he has the 9th best ERA of all those closers. He started slow for the Orioles this year, but has been lights out for the last 30 games he has pitched in. There were a lot of clubs that wanted him, this is the deal the Orioles took, good or bad. The fact is the Dodgers have a closer, who knows how many save opportunities will be split, or if he will be just used as setup. But this is what winning clubs do, they get better. Time will tell if Johnson will be or can be a solid replacement. I would hate to see the best setup guy be pushed out. Now you have a problem, a staff with young pitchers that need help after 5 or 6 innings of work.

This is a savings of over 1 million in salary for a team that wants to compete in two years, and that is the deal.

Do not get too excited about this trade, it is great to have the Johnson spin.

I bet the ones who are screaming about yet another bad trade by MacPhail are the same ones who miss Tejada and Bedard. Also wonder how these "fans" would feel if they O's gave up a couple prospects for a go to guy for one inning before the closer. Is Jason Johnson were two prospects? Danys Baez? Chris Ray? Sherrill was good for the year and a half here but bottom line is what good is a closer on a last place team? Here's hoping Sherrill wins a ring with the Dodgers, and Bell and Johnson bring good returns in the future for the home team.

coach -

Maybe I was a bit off with my number. Sherrill might close for Cleveland, Texas or Arizona as well. But my points were that Sherrill isn't an elite closer, that non-elite closers are easily replaceable and that getting two solid prospects for a relief pitcher is a huge win. Maybe instead of saying that a 90 loss team doesn't need a closer, I should have said that the Orioles don't need Sherrill.

As far as the young pitchers go, I don't see a problem. Johnson steps into the 9th inning and Baez steps into the 8th. Hendrickson and Bass are the long guys and Albers, Meredith and Mickolio flll in when and where they're needed.

People are freaking out like the O's traded Mariano Rivera or Joe Nathan for a couple of scrubs. The fact is, they traded a replaceable reliever in Sherrill for two solid prospects. Any time you do that, you win.

And I am going to get excited about this trade because Bell is filling an area of need as a corner infielder and Johnson is a solid arm to add to the mix. And both of those guys were netted for a throw-in from the Bedard deal.

cb coach. I agree with what you say. Many posters here are in favour of the Sherill trade because we have been rebuilding for so long, they have become conditioned to accept that these type of deals will make us better, when in actual fact they make us worse.
At you hit on a key point, good teams like the Dodgers make these type of deals to get better and continue to contend; the O's make these type of deals for who knows why? A salary dump perhaps? There's no question that's what the Bradford 'deal' was but if we only save 1 mill then perhaps that's a stretch woith Sherill but then again maybe.
Hopefully someday , the O's will be in a position where they can talk some team into taking some of their 2nd tier prospects in return for a proven MLB player that can help them now but I'm not counting on that happening any time soon.
Fans here that are discrediting Sherill because of his age and record are off-base. Here's a guy who paid his dues, gets to the bigs via the independent league, works his way up to a MLB closer in the span of 2 years and is proud to be an Oriole to boot. Then he gets slammed because of one-up and down half season ofclosing, followed by a very solid '09 so far. There's no reason that Sherill can't be productive for another 4-5 years but unfortunately, he'll be doing it elsewhere.

For those commenting about Bell's fielding, Which player committed 25 errors in 1983, 26 in 1984, 26 in 1985 and 25 in 1997, 22 in 1998? Cal Ripken. Ozzie Smith won the first of his 13 career gold gloves while committing 24 errors in 1980, and in his rookie season in 1978 he committed 25. Bell is in AA where one is still learning to field his position and also where the fields aren't in a great shape, nor the lighting as good as in major league diamonds. Am I saying Bell will be a HOF? Of course not, but how about some perspective. Give the kid a chance.

You seem awfully sure that Bell won't be ready for the bigs next year. However I also remember back in April you said Reimold is at least a year away from being a major league player.


..............................................................................................
Pete's reply: Well, I hope you're right and I'm wrong again.

I don't think this was a great trade, but I don't think it was a bad one either. Sherill was a great closer for us, but he's not a great closer, good, but not great. He can get the job done, but sometimes he has you sitting on the edge of your seat hoping he doesn't make a mistake. And who's to say he would be as consistent in 2 years when the O's should be contenders.

In the trade we got a corner infielder which we need, and from everything I read seems to be a good prospect. Yes he needs work on hitting and defense, and probably won't be ready for next year, but it's still better than going for a quick fix 3rd baseman. Give the kid time before you write him off, he's only 22. I'm not sold on Johnson, but he's young too, maybe we can at least get a bullpen spot out of him.

All in all, if you look at the O's roster, I think next year and into 2011, we'll have a good, young baseball team. If bell comes up to 3rd, and Snyder to first, Andino stays at SS, outfield remains the same, you'll have a complete field under the age of 28 (aside from Roberts)

Pete, What I am saying is I do not think the Orioles will address the corner infield positions, with major league ready players. That is what I am saying, and if I am right (which happens sometimes, not often) they will exercise options although I do not believe that is the smartest move they can make. In my opinion, the Sherrill deal does not fix those holes, it creates an additional hole with not having a closer now. Does that make what I am saying more clear?

The corner infield positions are hurting the team, although I loved what they did last year, it is what have you done for me lately.

As far as anyone comparing Ripken to Bell in fielding is making a huge misjudgment , Cal was quickly moved to Shortstop by Earl and Cal learned on the job. Cal had a .970 fielding percentage while learning the shortstop position his first two seasons, not a sub .900 fielding position at 3rd base.

Maybe Scott can learn first base. he has played only two games in the majors, four in the minors, but it is worth the shot. Since we seem to be in a tear down mode, might as well try it,

Then maybe the new guy Bell can handle the DH role in a year or two, or learn first base. All I know is that the only strengths we have t trade with is our young pitching.

Regardless of all this discussion everyone has to come to the conclusion that we are weak a starting pitcher without a top flight front line starter, First Base, Third Base and now the closer position.

The middle relief has been real good, the outfield is solid, middle infield with Izturis, Roberts and Andino backing up is excellent and Wieters and Zaun behind the plate is very good.

The rebuilding process has been interesting to say the least. I do not think you can solve everything by 2011 this way, I believe they have to sign three or four free agents.

Pete, You graded the mid term progress for the O's how about doing the same for the rebuilding process?


..............................................................................................
Pete's reply: Good idea. When I get some spare time, I'll do that.

What we were doing before was not rebuilding. Signing Bradford, Walker, Baez in an offseason was not rebuilding. This club had not been in full rebuilding for years until last years offseason. I thought this whole city was all about going back to the "Oriole Way". How is keeping a 32 year old pseudo closer the "Oriole Way". We traded for a 22 and 21 year old both of whom are in AA, one was rated by scouts as an 80 in terms of his power, how does this make us worse? We can't expect anymore from Bell at this point in his career? He's shown improvement in his fielding over this season. And as I recall Riemold wasn't considered a good fielder while in the minor leagues either and y'all love him now. The fickleness is just amazing.

Terry -

Many posters here are in favor of the Sherrill deal because it gives the O's a chance to be better in the future. It's impossible to make an organization worse when you trade a relief pitcher for two solid prospects. The kind of deals that make a team worse are the stupid contracts (ie: Jamie Walker, Ramon Hernandez). Losing teams that hold onto their veteran players instead of dealing them for prospects continue to lose. It's as simple as that.

I'm confused about why it's so hard for some people to understand that George Sherrill was not a part of the future of this organization.

For those of you looking for a deal that makes no sense, check the third headline at this link: http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/story/9875596

Why trade a 26-year-old third baseman and a 22-year-old infield prospect for a 34-year-old third baseman when you're playing .446 ball in 5th place?

The knock on Reimold was his strikeouts, not his defense in fact they raved about his defense.

AM is trying to mold a club. But the plan is not as easy as just labeling it a rebuilding process. Find the players that are smart winning ball players is touch to do.

To me the keys to success is great pitching and defense and timely hitting. The fact is the Orioles use to be that way. The smart savvy players that would make plays, pitch smart and hit in the clutch.

The Orioles will have to address the closer issue.

Josh Bell is an excellent pick-up.

He has an on-base average of .386 with 50 walks and only 70 strikeouts which is great for a young power hitter. With those numbers, it appears he has great discipline at the plate. This is no wild-winging minor leaguer.

Bell had 30 doubles in 94 games. Projected to a 162-game season, this turns into 51 doubles-that's Roberts/Markakis territory.He's only 22, and more power will develop. A number of those doubles will be home runs a couple of years from now.

He needs to work on some things, but he could still be in Baltimore this rime next year.

MIke,
So that was you and all your buddies at Camden standing and cheering for the Botox to close out the game. Seeeee yaaa!

Who raved about Riemold defense? Other than his arm he's a rather average fielder.

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About Peter Schmuck
Peter Schmuck wants you to know that, contrary to popular belief, he is more than just a bon vivant, raconteur and collector of blousy flowered shirts. He is a semi-respected journalist who has covered virtually every sport -- except luge, of course – and tackled issues that transcend the mere games people play. If that isn’t enough to qualify him to provide witty, wide-ranging commentary on the sports world ... and the rest of the world, for that matter ... he is an avid reader of history, biography and the classics, as well as a charming blowhard who pops off on both sports and politics on WBAL Radio. That means you can expect a little of everything in The Schmuck Stops Here, but the major focus will be keeping you up to the minute on Baltimore’s major sports teams and themes, whether it’s throwing up the Orioles lineup the minute it’s announced or updating you on the latest sprained ankle in Owings Mills. Oh, and by the way, that’s Mr. Schmuck to you.

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