FanPost

Reply on Randy Johnson

Not sure why entries in a diary tend to 'shut down' after a certain amount of time; maybe an anti-spam measure? Thought I'd respond to comments on my comments in the 'Randy Johnson?' thread by cmathewson.

I admit I'm not an expert on the Twins minor league system, and certainly am no expert on the D'Backs system, so I just went with John Sickels's top-20 lists and chose players with similar grades and in similar positions in the top-20. I picked Winfree instead of Paul Kelly as a 'comp' both because the Twins don't have any top-20 shortstop prospects, as well as that Kelly is rated and ranked higher in the Twins system than Gonzalez was ranked in the D'Backs system. (Though it's interesting to note that, post-trade, all three prospects are higher ranked in the Yankees system - see Sickels's revised Yankee list - than they were in the D'Backs system.)

It's possible to argue that Winfree is the Twins best 3B prospect, but based on Sickels's list I'd object: from the looks of that list, Garrett Olson and Matt Moses are basically interchangable with Winfree, from a prospect perspective, so the Twins could afford to ship one of them out (assuming, of course, they didn't know in advance which one would pan out).

I was also confused about the terms of the trade, though I apparently wasn't alone - I thought the Yanks were picking up all but $2 million of Johnson's salary, but it looks now like they're picking up only $2 million, which is a huge difference from a Twins perspective; that alone would be enough to eliminate Ryan's interest, I'm sure.

cmath's characterization of Reyes as 'the most effective LOOGY in all of baseball last year' is probably accurate but overstates Reyes's value; if anything, now would be the time to trade him, when another GM might consider that a great season by a near-40-year-old reliever might indicate he's likely to repeat his performance, and the Twins could then do what they did last year when finding Reyes in the first place; pick someone up off the scrap heap and bring him into Rick Anderson's system.

Lastly, ubelmann is right - the trade gave D'Back fans reason to go to 12-15 more games, given that Webb is already good. Of course, it's an open question of how big a draw even Randy Johnson will be if the club is a dozen games out by the end of May - for example, Johan Santana pitched a home start against Cleveland on May 23, with the team six games below .500 and looking well out of the race, and drew less than 20,000 paid at the gate.

Unless one of those prospects the Yankees got goes on to have a solid career as a Yankee, I'm thinking this trade is largely meaningless in the grand scheme of things.

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