Sunday, November 26, 2006

Depodesta's Reign Part 2: Trade Deadline Fun

Here's part two for your reading pleasure, the article will most probably be posted Tuesday if not earlier. I'm also working on a free agent review for the hitters as of yet utilizing *gasp* sabrmetric statistics.

9: Traded Paul Lo Duca, Guillermo Mota and Juan Encarnacion to Florida for Hee Seop Choi, Brad Penny and minor leaguer Bill Murphy

This was THE trade completed by Depo. In the end, people will point to this trade as the most significant deal he made. He traded lifetime Dodger and catcher Lo Duca, a fan favorite however overrated he was, along with fire-baller Mota and outfielder Encarnacion to a Marlin team that was very much in the race for the NL East title. In return he acquired a player that, for critics, would come to represent the fault in sabrmertic logic; walk machine Choi along with starting pitcher Brad Penny and a minor league player. Unfortunately, Depodesta didn't factor in his manager's feelings about the trade, and Jim Tracy often took his anger out on Choi, even benching him in favor of Jason Phillips. Choi was lost on waivers to Boston after the Nomar signing, but for a minimum salary for parts of two seasons, he provided the Dodgers with a total Value Over Replacement Player of 10.1 and an OPS+ in his first full Dodger season of 110. Penny meanwhile is the gem of this trade, he is the only player still playing for one of the teams and has performed well for the Dodgers. In the past two seasons he's won a combined 23 games and has posted ERA+ of 104 and 106 with VORPs over 30 in both seasons. However, he was injured in 2004; barely threw for the Dodgers during their playoff run, and threw only one inning in the playoffs.

LoDuca performed well for the Marlins until his trade to the Mets before the 2006 season. He's a below average hitter (OPS+ of 82 and 92) but brings a better value than a replacement player (VORPs of 4.2 and 21.5) along with leadership for pitchers. Mota regressed upon his arrival to Florida ; after a 2003 ERA+ of 204 (with an ERA of 1.97 in 105 innings) and an ERA+ of 193 in his 63 innings with the Dodgers in 2004, he posted an ERA+ of 85 with Florida after the trade. The following season, he threw 67 innings and managed only an ERA+ of 85 before being traded to the Red Sox. Encarnacion would not help the playoff chase either with an OPS+ of 85 and VORP of 1.9 but would perform well the following season with an OPS+ of 113 and a VORP of 28.3 before leaving Florida as a free agent.

As previously stated, this is the trade that critics will point to when talking about Depo. The sabrmetric beauty that was Choi did not work out as planned (although he did give good production for his salary) and pundits say Depo was stupid to trade so much for him. But, he acquired a starting pitcher who has been effective for the Dodgers and is still on the team without giving up anyone with a larger statistical value. It can also be argued that Choi almost played as well as Encarnacion in the season following the trade!

10: Traded Koyie Hill, Reggie Abercombie and minor leaguer Bill Murphy to Arizona for Steve Finley and Brent Mayne
Originally, according to some sources, the deal with Florida was to pick up pieces in order for the Dodgers to acquire Randy Johnson. Obviously that trade did not happen and instead the Dodgers acquired Finley and Mayne from the D'backs to help improve their playoff bound team. Both would only spend the remainder of the season as Dodgers with very different productions during this time. Finely would perform well as evidenced by his VORP of 12.2 and his OPS+ of 112 and helped the Dodgers fill a void in centre field in their playoff chase. Mayne would bring some experience at catcher after the loss of Lo Duca but horribly at the plate (-6.3 VORP, OPS+ of 29). Both Hill and Abercrombie would be plucked off waivers from the D'backs with Hill only getting 114 at bats in Arizona and Abercrombie getting none. Murphy has not made the Majors to this date and is not ranked as a top prospect from any list I've seen.

11: Traded Tom Martin to Atlanta, Received minor leaguer Matt Merricks
*Yawn* Tom Martin threw 19.3 total innings for the Braves before being released in 2005, although he did post a VORP of 3.8 in his short time there in 2004, while Merricks hasn't made the Majors.

12: Traded Dave Roberts to the Red Sox, Received minor leaguer Henri Stanley
I can't quite remember if Roberts had an impact on the Red Sox during the 2004 season…it's really just not coming up! OH WAIT. Roberts would perform well in his partial season with the Red Sox with a VORP of 1.7, OPS+ of 94 and 5 stolen bases. He will be forever remembered for the steal in the ALCS that changed the Red Sox' fortune and being traded for a loot including Jay Payton immediately after the World Series. Legend has it, that the trade involving Roberts and Payton was actually negotiated during the World Series. Stanley has not made the Majors and is not a top prospect to my knowledge.

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