The Rich Aren’t Beyond Dumpster Diving — Dodgers ink LHP Maholm

We don’t often get a chance to see the Los Angeles Dodgers being pragmatic with money, so here you go. 

After missing out on Bronson Arroyo, the Dodgers inked an incentive laden one-year $1.5 million deal for Maholm. 

In a vacuum one can argue the merits and projections of Arroyo and Maholm. After all, they’re pretty much the same — low strikeouts, pitching to contact, letting the “d” and the wind do some magic. 

But Maholm is a lefty, is five years younger, with a career 52 percent ground ball rate. And he’s one year and close to $20 million cheaper than Arroyo. Maholm’s already said he’s willing to work from the bullpen if Josh Beckett — the projected fifth starter — gets healthy. 

Maholm is essentially filling in for the fifth spot on the rotation, and will cost about $5 million less than Chris Capuano, whose player option was not picked up at the end of 2013. 

Maholm’s at least gong to get some starts, and playing in a bigger home stadium might help his home run-to-fly ball ratios, which doubled from Pittsburgh to Atlanta. 

Arroyo would have been more perfect for the Dodgers, given the quality of pitchers they have and the money they tend not to care much about. But Maholm’s even better. 

What to do About the Dodger Free Agents

What are we possibly gonna do with this guy????

Let’s discuss the 2014 postseason:

Fuck that.

Cool! Now that we got that out of the way, we can move on to what really matters: the offseason! 113 days of rumors and front office hires and narratives and winter meetings and countdowns and Friedman and more rumors and scott boras and fuck everything in 2014. It is an exciting time because the future is now. And with the World Series ending yesterday, we can bid adieu to a few contributors and other awful pieces, and get right back in it with the next 25 guys that we will live with everyday for six months and likely more.

Think about it: it’s Halloween, then Thanksgiving, then the Holidays, then Christmas, then New Years, then the Super Bowl, AND THEN OMG IT’S SPRING TRAINING. The offseason may seem long, but it will thankfully be here before you know it.

To tidy you over until the team moves back to Glendale, Drank presents the newest list of free agents and what the Dodgers should realistically do with them. Don’t worry, there is plenty more exciting inside Dodger content to keep you excited for 2015!

SP Josh Beckett - retiring

Farewell to a wonderful career, Josh. It was great watching you fight and overcome the medical hardships and the excessive number of fried chicken jokes to throwing one of those flawed and funny no-hitters. 2 World Series rings, World Series MVP, and a no-hitter to end the resume. Most importantly from this year, I learned that his middle name is Patrick—which only reminded me of a leprechaun. Drank likes leprechauns.

With that said, nothing to do, here. Retirement is retirement. Farewell, Patrick.

SP/RP Kevin Correia - shoot into the sun

The Dodger fan base still has no idea what we gave up for the awful that is Kevin Correia. Whatever it was, it was way too much. On a side note, it would be funny if Butera was traded for him.

Enjoy the sun’s unbearable, radiant heat on your way to death, Kevin.

SP Roberto Hernandez - shoot into the sun

We gave up 2 prospects for Correia-levels of awfulness with Fausto. At least one of them could have netted something even semi-useful. Fuck everything.

Enjoy your ride to the sun. Carpool with Kevin.

RP Jamey Wright - Hope he signs elsewhere

Wright was not a bad investment—in fact, he did exactly what the Dodgers paid him to do. He was mediocre at relief pitching, which has value. The problem was, he wound up being like the third most reliable relief pitcher, which is a huge problem.

Given that LA has Howell, Wilson, and League all under contract for next year (*__*) and that the bullpen is still a fucking tire fire, LA is probably going to have let Wright go elsewhere, as his spot presents one of the few opportunities to upgrade.

Maybe Wright winds up in San Diego, then can throw mediocre pitches to Dodger hitters. That would be swell.

SP/RP Paul Maholm - Tevs

I would put him on the same space ship to the sun, except his knee is still reattaching itself. So, he is guaranteed to not pitch for LA in 2015, and Drank is totally fine with that. Yes, Drank is totally fine not having a -1 WAR pitcher pitch for his favorite team.

The deal was good, but LA refused to let him go. He logged actual innings until that knee asploded. Rehab that knee and sign with San Francisco, Paul. Just kidding, you would probably turn into a hall of famer there.

RP Chris Perez - shoot into the sun

Yeah, join that carpool, Chris Perez.

Let us remind ourselves that the Chris Perez signing was okay. It really was. That is, until Colletti and co. refused to take Perez off of the roster. General suckitude through May? No! Walking 4 straight batters in July? NO! Perez somehow survived 2014 on the roster. Every single day.

Keep in mind that the Oakland A’s—those fucking penny-pinching A’s—cut the more expensive Jim Johnson from their roster mid-season. The team that can’t afford to cut a guy who made up like 10% of their payroll was cut. Meanwhile, the money-dominated Dodgers refused to cut Perez who made less money. All kinds of stupid.

Enjoy that sun, Perez. You’ll never need a ligher for you or your dog ever again while you live there.

SS Hanley Ramirez - QO and try to resign

Ah, now it gets interesting.

Hanley Ramirez: incredible bat, awful glove, questionable clubhouse attitude, fun instagram account, a novel of DL stints… but man, that bat.

So what do you do? The Dodgers scored the 2nd most runs in the National League—much of that because of his bat in the middle of the order. The Dodgers defense also suffered up the middle, because his defense is bad.

What do the Dodgers do?

In Drank’s opinion, it is quite simple: give him the qualifying offer, which he will decline. DRAFT PICK GUARANTEED.

Then, when the free agency bidding opens, try to bring him back. Play the waiting game! But… yes, his defense is awful! So try and bring him back to play 3rd base.

Hanley at 3rd base: defensive contributions are mitigated, because Drank projects the slick glove of Erisbel Arruebarrena to be at SS. That alone improves the defense, even if the downgrade at 3B is noticeable—Drank very much buys superb defense up the middle to be of utmost importance moving forward.

Offer Hanley a 4-year, $100 mil contract, with the hope that other teams are wary of the lost draft pick from the QO. The higher AAV should be appealing. To make this contract more appealing, offer Hanley an opt-out clause after years 1 and 2 of the deal, essentially giving Hanley an out if he has a 2013ish season, and another chance to earn bigger payday after his age 31 and 32 seasons.

Obviously, that does not guarantee a Hanley return. In fact, the odds of a Hanley return at that point might be like 30%. It is a risk worth doing as means to keep Hanley’s bat in the lineup, but his glove at a less important position. For Hanley, if that 6-year offer does not show up, it provides a redo of a contract year, and another chance to earn that big payday.

Or if he walks, then the Dodgers get that draft pick. YAY!

Of course, Friedman probably won’t do that. But Drank would! This blog is called Think Purple Drank, and not Think Andrew Friedman… yeah!

I’ll miss you, Hanley.