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Friday Rockpile: The Marquis of Sod

According to a Tracy Ringolsby post this morning, the Rockies are getting outgunned in their pursuit of a pitcher that they want, Tim Redding, so rather than competing with other teams in the matter -which correct me if I'm wrong, competing with other teams is the point of sports, right?- they're thinking of opting for an expensive player that nobody else wants in Jason Marquis. The path to victory doesn't usually go the way of least resistance, last I checked, and I was about to go off on this idea, but at half salary Marquis isn't a bad option, with an ERA + the last two seasons of 101 and 99, and a tRA+ of 99 and 98, he's pretty much the definition of league average. If you're talking about that from a guy you want in the middle of your rotation in the NL West it would be scary, but if you're talking about that guy as a safety if your better hopes don't work out, then I can think of far worse directions we could go (Josh Fogg). CHONE's projection for Marquis sees a decline this year to #5 starter level, but still values him at $4.6 million for 2009 which is just a bit below what a 50% share of his salary would entail. Redding figures to be less valuable, but could cost more, and certainly will come at a greater premium over his projected $2.9 million value.

The one aspect that isn't factored in at all is if a trade of Marquis would also involve a player cost, which could tip it into an unwise use of resources category, but there are a few options that could work. A Marquis for David Patton and cash considerations trade makes some sense, for instance, since Patton's already on Chicago's roster after the Rule 5 draft and there's already some risk of the Rockies losing him, but he would have to clear waivers before that could happen. I was originally thinking I was going to be upset about this plan, but there's little reason to be at this point.

About a year ago I did an audit of Rockies player contributions for 2007 by the year of original acquisition, and I'm working on a similar study for 2008 to be up sometime this weekend, hoepfully tonight, but I've got my traditional Boxing Day festivities to work around.

Ringolsby also did a Winter Ball update, I just wanted to add a couple of other notes. Xavier Cedeno is doing very well out of relief in the Puerto Rican League, with a 1.35 ERA and 2.83 GB ratio. Carlos Gonzalez, meanwhile, is struggling after an initial burst in his return to DWL play with a .216 average and a 1/10 BB/K ratio in his last ten games.