Thursday, February 19, 2009

Jose Guillen M.D.

Happy Thursday.  Today was a bit slow news-wise as ST goes, but there was definitely some pertinent things that happened.  First off, the Royals added a middle infielder.  Dayton Moore claimed Tug Hulett off of waivers from the Mariners, and subsequently DFA'd RP Neal Musser.  I see this overall as an improvement of the team.  Hulett is younger than Musser and besides Musser will probably accept a re-assignment to AAA Omaha anyway.

You may remember Hulett's name from last offseason, when he was sent from Texas to the Mariners for 1B Ben Broussard.  Broussard went on to be released by the Rangers before June, and so I'm sure the Mariner's didn't have much problem letting go of Tug.  Hulett isn't much of a power hitter, although he did hit 14 homers last year for PCL Tacoma on his way to a .518 slugging percentage.  He's prone to strike outs (204 in 253 games in his last two years between AAA and the majors) but he also is willing to walk (118 in that same time period).  Hulett will turn 26 before the season starts, but has never really had a shot in the big leagues.  Overall, I definitely rate this as a positive move, Hulett could very well end up being a serviceable big league 2nd baseman with a .280/.350/.450 line in his prime with maybe 10 home runs.  He could also flounder in AAA and we could never hear from him again.  Either way, moves like this make me excited that DM isn't just passing over the details, he is actively searching to improve his team in any way possible.  As a sidenote, "Tug's" actually name is "Timothy"... interesting.

Musser was going to turn 29 before the season was over and while he has posted a career 4.18 ERA in the majors that goes along with a 1.83 WHIP, strong proof that his ERA was not sustainable.  Musser is a lefty, so even if he doesn't accept an assignment to AAA I imagine he will stick on someone's 40 man.  His stuff is passable, his strikeout rate of 7.7 batters per 9 in the minors is very good and is HR/9 of 0.7 is excellent.  I don't have information for his splits in the minors but he has done much better vs. righties in his big league career (granted in 25 innings).  He has a .262/.368/.431 vs righties and a .385/.442/.692 vs lefties.  Neither is very good, and definitely does not show that he has LOOGY potential.  However, he really hasn't had much of a chance in the ML yet and may very well end up sticking somewhere.

On to the Orlando Hudson front.  As each day passes, it looks more and more like the Dodgers are going to wind up with a 50% off deal on O-Dawg.  While this may stunt the growth of Blake DeWitt for a season, it would allow the Dodgers to plug in another big league hitter into their lineup.  Also as each day passes I get more and more frustrated that we haven't seen O-Dawg's press conference announcing him as a Royal.  Hudson would fit in so well as a leadoff or #2 hitter for the Royals and fills a position of need.  Even in his sub 100 OPS+ days in Toronto he could still talk a walk and hit for some decent power.  And as always, he is easily one of the three best defensive 2nd baseman in the majors.  

Another piece of news from today: Jose Guillen is performing minor surgery on himself.  How this happens, I don't know.  This is nearly as bad as Tracy McGrady announcing through his website that he would have season-ending surgery on his knee before even discussing the matter with his coaching staff.  That being said, at least TMac didn't break out a steak knife and do the dirty himself.  I will always have beef with Guillen, as I feel like he doesn't care about the team at all.  That being said, he is a Royal and I do root for him.  I would imagine that Nick Swartz SHOULD take some flak for this.  After all, the players' health is his job.  However, Nick Swartz has been around for a long time, and I doubt anything comes of this.  Shouldn't someone be responsible for explaining to the players the implications of something like this?  What if his toe gets infected and he misses half the season?  aye aye, anyway enough of JoGui for now.

Andy Marte was DFA'd today. While I realize there is very little room on the Royals 40 man for another corner infielder-type, I think it is important to improve your roster with every chance you get, even if that improvement is small.  Who would you rather have as a backup infielder? Ross Gload, who is capable of playing 1B and the corner OF spots or Marte who can play 3B or 1B and is 7 years younger.  Gload is a proven commodity.  And it is also proven that Hillman (and Buddy Bell for that matter) way overuse him.  Why not bring in Marte and allow him to work with Kevin Seitzer to work on getting his swing back.  After all Marte was rated the number 11 prospect in baseball by Baseball America as recently as 2006.  Another important factor to consider is that if Mark Teahen is traded or released, this team has no 3B to back up Gordon.  Sure, German can handle the position, but at this point there's no guarantee he makes the roster out of spring training.  Besides, watching him throw from 3B is like watching David Eckstein throw.. from anywhere.  Anyway, I feel like ditching Gload for Marte would be a net positive for the Royals roster.

Well that's about all of the information I found useful for today.  As always, thanks for reading.


  1. Marte is interesting but its those logistics man, those damn logistics.

  2. Would you rather have Marte or Shealy take Gloads spot? Before today, I wanted Shealy to take Gload's spot.

  3. I'd prefer Marte take Gload's spot. Shealy is older, was never as good of a prospect (though he did win a few minor league HR titles) and can only play one position. Marte is younger, can play multiple positions, and was a can't miss prospect for a long time, as opposed to Shealy who kind of worked himself into being a "good" prospect who was still stuck behind Todd Helton.