For this AAOP I'm considering Neil Walker back on the QO so my moves will come with that already assumed.
By my calculations our current contractual obligations break down to this....
- Wright - 20
- Grandy - 15
- Bruce - 13
- Cabrera - 8.25
- Lagares - 4.5
- Walker - 17.2
77.95 in guaranteed contracts.
ON to our Arbitration eligible players. I have brought back everyone that hasn't been explicitly let go...... except Rene Rivera, sorry 2.2 million for your services is a bit much.
- Harvey - 5.2
- Duda - 6.725
- DeGrom - 4.5
- Flores - 1.9
- TDA - 1.7
- Reed - 10.6
- Familia - 8.7
- Wheeler - 1
- Edgin - .8
- Rivera - 2.2 --- Non-tender let him walk.
Totaling out to 41.125
Moving on we have to take a look at our young guys on the roster, can't forget the cost of them.
total of 3.5 mil
After looking at these 3 areas of payroll our total before any additions or subtractions will be around 123.775. This seems to be an issue with our limit at 140 mil. I can't say I'm too pleased with Neil Walker back on a QO, seems like a waste of 17.2 million and to be honest screwed up my main AAOP plan. That's neither here nor there and we will roll with the punches here. SO lets take a look at the moves. Right now we are looking at 22 players on the 25 man roster. I will fill this out to a full 25 man group.
First things first we will address Bruce, in this plan he is going to be a salary cap hit. Realistically I can't see them moving Granderson or Conforto before him. Conforto has an unknown ceiling and Granderson is excellent for community relations. Therefore we need to move Bruce to relieve some money to make some moves! In this scenario we will go after the team that has already been rumored to be interested, the Blue Jays. What we want from the Blue Jays is one of two pitchers, Connor Greene or Ryan Borucki. They are respectively the 12th and 17th ranked prospects in the Jays organization. Greene a RHP with projections to be a mid range starter, and Borucki a LHP with the same projections but some early injury troubles on his chart. I feel we will be able to pry away one of the two if not both in a deal. So say goodbye to Bruce and hello to a new pitching prospect or two. 13 Million off the books.
This drops our committed salaries to 109.575 million.
Our first addition of free agency. We can go right ahead and offer him what MLBTR predicts at a 4 year 52 million contract. Melancon has been a top tier closer for years, he is a wise investment for a team looking to go deep in a few playoff runs. Even better he gives us some insurance in case Familia isn't back early in the season. Either way he joins a the bullpen to create a 3 headed monster with Reed and Familia. His annual of 13 million will bring us right back to where we were before Bruce, but we now have a necessary piece for the BP.
Brings our committed salaries back to 122.575
Solid lefty for our BP all year, wants a muti year deal in and we need him back to turn this BP into something really special. I think 3 years at 12 mil is going to get it done. Giving him an annual salary of 4 million. We get our lefty specialist and a solid piece back, and it further strengthens our BP. I would venture to say that the BP might be the best in the league after the addition of Melancon and resigning of Blevins.
Our committed payroll is up to 126.575
Gomez is a bit of a question mark, but the upside is too great to pass up. He had a terrible year in Houston, but once he got out of there into Texas he got right back on track. Can we expect the Gomez from the Brewers and Texas or are we getting the Gomez from the Astros. Even if it's somewhere in between the production will still be better than Lagares for everyday CF. We take the chance and hand Gomez a deal for 3 years 33 mil. Fangraphs had him at 3 years 30 and MLBTR at 3 yrs 36, so I'm going to pay him right in the middle. Raises our payroll by 11 mil.
We are up to 137.575, getting close to that cap.
Lastly we are going to explore a trade........ Adam Eaton for Matz, Dom Smith, PJ Conlon, and Wilmer Flores.
Now we can discuss the last part of the plan. Adam Eaton is going to be our new RFer for the next 5 seasons. Someone to hit in the 1 or 2 hole and provide the grit and flare this lineup needs. Bringing speed, excellent defense, and the excellent contact skills. We are parting with a lot but from areas of strength. Eaton is also only costing the team 4 million for 2017, an amazing bargain for a player worth 6 WAR last season. Eaton adds 4 mil, but we subtract 500k for Matz and 1.9m for Flores.
139.175 is where we stand after this move.
Just throwing in that replacing Matz and Flores on the roster will be Smoker and TJ Rivera. Bringing our final total to
1B - Duda
2B - Walker
3B - Wright
SS - Cabrera
LF - Conforto
CF - Gomez
RF - Eaton
C - TDA
Plawecki, Lagares, Granderson, Rivera, Reyes
Lineup doesn't have the star power of Cespedes, but the production from Eaton and Gomez should offset that. Our bullpen will be fierce, probably one of the best in the league. The rotation should perform well enough, Matz had durability issues and the trade got us a core player for RF.