Chat With MLBTR's Steve Adams: 8/27/19
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Steve Adams
Greetings all! Apologies for the delayed start. Traveling for the better part of the past two weeks has my schedule and routine in shambles. Will do a better job of getting back on track moving forward.
Other than being in on Cole, do you think the Angels have the ability to sign a Cole and Wheeler/Miley?
Steve Adams
Well, I wouldn't expect Wheeler and Miley to be particularly close in price tag. Wheeler should easily command more -- if not in total years then certainly in AAV. The Angels have $119M in luxury considerations and $114M on the books in 2020 without any massive arbitration commitments on the horizon.

They have the ability to do that type of thing if they wish, but doing so will limit the scope of their other moves (catcher, most notably).
A's and Rays front runners for the Wild Card game now that J-Ram is a goner?
Steve Adams
They're my picks... whether that makes them the statistical favorites, I'm not sure. Both FG and B-Pro have the Indians' chances ahead of Oakland and Tampa Bay, but I'm not sure if those projections reflect the definitive loss of Ramirez through season's end.
Do the Braves extend a QO to Donaldson in the offseason? If so and he accepts what do you think the Braves so with the rotation and bullpen? Both definitely could use an upgrade.
Steve Adams
Issuing a QO to Donaldson is an easy call.

So is rejecting that QO if you're Donaldson, though. Why accept a ~18M one-year deal when he commanded more last winter coming off a mostly lost season? He's a slam dunk to reject and collect a two- or three-year deal at a hefty annual rate. I wouldn't pencil him into Atlanta's 2020 lineup.
Also -- I have to point out that it's rather amusing how quickly the narrative has changed in Atlanta. It's not that long since the overwhelming sentiment was "Anthopoulos only signs his buddies and we'd be better off with Riley at 3B."

Not a comment on you specifically, of course. But a reminder that this is a long, long season and things change in a hurry.
The Jays have roughly $35mm committed for next year and have recently had payrolls well in excess of $100mm. Do you see them adding a top of the rotation starter this offseason in preparation for 2021 and beyond?
Steve Adams

A) There aren't many top-of-the-rotation arms available. (Cole in free agency ... maybe not any in trade)
B) Adding a front-line arm right now would be wasting one of said arm's best seasons on what looks highly unlikely to be a competitive year.
If the Cubs miss the postseason, how extensive do you expect the rebuild to be (or do they just pour more money into the current roster)?
Steve Adams
I don't think they'll rebuild -- nor do I think they should. But they could very well move guys like Schwarber, Happ, Russell, Almora, etc. who aren't key pieces in a reshuffling aimed at reloading for next year. They'll still have Bryant, Baez, Rizzo, Contreras... not a bad quartet around which to build your lineup.
Eric C
With next year’s change to a 26-man active roster, will there be a limit as to how many pitchers can be on that roster? 14 would seem like an exorbitant amount to me. Thank you!
Steve Adams
There'll be a limit, yes. I don't believe there's been a formal announcement just yet, but it was reported when the new rules were announced that a 13-pitcher limit had been proposed.
Same old mets
It seems as though the Mets are going to have payroll issues in 2020, any chance they trade deGrom in the offseason for a haul?
Steve Adams
The Mets hired Brodie Van Wagenen because he was the only GM candidate they interviewed who didn't want some kind of rebuild. They've been on fire in the second half, made a win-now move to add Stroman, held onto Syndergaard, etc. They're not going to trade deGrom this winter.
Would Donaldson accept a 2yr 45 million dollar deal to stay in Atlanta?  He is from Alabama and the Braves do have a nucleus to win for the next 5 seasons.
Steve Adams
I doubt it.
I'm sure he's open to staying in Atlanta, but I don't think that's a large enough offer
Free Agent Starting Pitchers
What free agent starting pitchers will take a QO to get rid of the draft pick? Cole, MadBum who else?
Steve Adams
There's no chance either of them accepts a QO
I could see Wheeler accepting if the Mets make one. Jake Odorizzi is a possible candidate to accept, I suppose, but I think he'd reject if he got one as well.
To be clear, I'd still bet on Wheeler rejecting -- I just wouldn't be shocked if he accepted. We'll see how his final month goes.
Jose Abreu
How much does my agent love me saying that I will resign with the White Sox? I do not care about negotiating power
Steve Adams
I think that's been the general expectation for so long that it doesn't really matter. They've been talking about a new deal forever; I imagine both sides are pretty much operating as if a deal is a foregone conclusion, and both know each others' price levels.
Who’s better realistically? Astros or Yankees?
Steve Adams
I think the Astros are the best team in the American League by a fair margin.
who has the most to gain money-wise last month+?
Steve Adams
Any impending free agent can bolster or torpedo his stock with a total collapse in the final five weeks. I'd say Zack Wheeler is among the top candidates for what you described, though. A strong finish puts the shoulder issue in the rear-view mirror. If he just crumbles, teams could shy away due to trepidation about that shoulde.r
Luis Robert
Do you think the 28 man september roster instead of the 40 man is why I wont be called up? (honestly though what are your thoughts on 28 instead of 40)
Steve Adams
That rule goes into effect in 2020.
(And I like it)
Lou S.
Any chance someone claims Jeff Samardzija on waivers? If yes, do the Giants dump him? He could help a contender and I'm sure Zaidi would love to get rid of the last year of his contract.
Steve Adams
I don't think a team would claim him, nor do I think the Giants would just outright him.

I've said this every week, but it's a new concept so it bears repeating: putting a player on waivers now is nothing like it was in previous years. Putting Shark on waivers right now is effectively the same as releasing him. I doubt he'd be claimed, but he'd reject his outright assignment, elect free agency and sign with a club that's more clearly a contender. That team would only owe Samardzija the prorated league minimum. The Giants would pay everything else he's still owed.
There's no way the Giants would do that when they could hold onto him and attempt to move him in a trade this winter where they might be spared some of next season's $18M salary.
The only way they'd do that now is if they were planning to release him after the season anyway, and I highly, highly doubt that is the case.
Is the Indians season basically over? Ramírez and all how’s this team winning it all?
Steve Adams
The injury sucks for them, of course, but I don't think their season is a total lost cause. Despite my previous picks of Oakland and TB to take the Wild Card spots, the Indians are still a good team with a legitimate postseason chance.

I wouldn't pick them as a World Series contender, no, but we've seen worse teams than this make deep playoff runs. There's a lot of talent on the roster, and a postseason rotation with Bieber, Clevinger and a possibly healthy Kluber would still be formidable (though Kluber is obviously a wildcard right now)
Astros are overrated
why do you mean by a fair margin that Astros are the best team? cause of Verlander and Cole?
Steve Adams
And Bregman, Springer, Brantley, Greinke, Altuve, etc. The team is stacked, it's deep, and it's healthier than the next-best team at the moment.

There's been plenty of talk about the Yankees' injuries in '19 -- rightfully so -- but the Astros have lost quite a few key players for a month or more. Springer, Correa, Altuve, Pressly ... they've had issues as well but are healthier at the moment.
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