Latest from the Winter Meetings:
– The Rangers traded RHP Kevin Millwood to the Orioles for reliever Chris Ray
– LHP Randy Wolf and RHP Latroy Hawkins both signed with the Milwaukee Brewers
– The Atlanta Braves GM officially stated that Rafael Soriano will be traded
– The Cardinals officially signed RHP Brad Penny
– The Marlins sent RHP Matt Lindstrom to the Astros for 2 minor leaguers and a Rule 5 pick
– 2004 Rookie of the Year SS Bobby Crosby signed with the Pirates
– The Phillies signed PH/1B Ross Gload
Let the Winter Meetings begin ! And since we’re on the free agent topic of starting pitchers, let’s stick with Jason Marquis.
Marquis was drafted in 1996 by the Atlanta Braves. His debut was in 2000, and he spent the following 3 years in the ATL. These years were rough for Marquis, as he never really showed improvement stats wise, going 14-15 with a 4.45 ERA. He lost his starting job for nearly all of 2003. In 2004, the St. Louis Cardinals took the risk of signing Marquis and naming him a starter. That year, Marquis broke out with a 15-7 record and a 3.71 ERA in 200+ innings. In his 3 seasons in St. Louis, he gave up 26, 29, and 35 home runs, which is a ridiculous amount. Marquis’ worst year in STL was in 2006, in which he went 14-16 with an awful 6.02 ERA, as the Cards went on to win the World Series. He spent the next two seasons in Chicago with positive records, and this past season in Colorado, where he was 15-13 with a 4.04 ERA; people thought he was the mid-season MVP before his ERA shot up.
Now, the question: should the Yanks sign him? While his career record is 94-83, his ERA is 4.48, which is very high for a longtime starter. His home runs allowed have gone down dramatically since his 3 years in STL. Marquis could be a good fit as the Yankees fourth or fifth starter, definitely not third. His inconsistency can be scary, and you know Yankee fans would jump on him if he does poorly as the 3rd starter. He isn’t a strikeout machine, but he does have accuracy. Another concern would be expecting him to jump into the AL, considering his entire career has been in the NL. He’s 31 years old and has good stuff. Look for a 4 year, $41 MM deal (around $10.2 mil/year) if he should get one.
Marquis grew up in Manhasset, NY, on Long Island. He went to the Little League World Series in 1991, where he pitched two no-hitters in the quarterfinals and 3rd Place game. He grew up a huge Yankee fan, and a Don Mattingly fan. This could effect his decision to play in pinstripes if the Yankees pursue…
In the first-part of my suggestion series I have a suggestion to the Redsox.
The Redsox need a capable MLB shortstop that can play every day. Sure, Nick Green has been pretty good, but they need a starting shortstop. The Redsox did claim Christian Guzman off waivers, but we do not know what will become of that. Guzman, 31, has 2 years (including this year) left on his contract. I do not believe he is the answer.
What I do believe is that the Redsox need to trade a top prospect, such as a Michael Bowden, Lars Anderson, or even Jacoby Ellsbury for Yunel Escobar of the Braves.
While I do not know if the Ellsbury-Escobar trade would work salary and teams agreeing wise, I do believe this fits the needs of both teams. The Braves need an MLB Outfielder that is young and lively, while the Redsox need a shortstop of the same kind. I would do it if I was either team, personally.