Rays Should Make a Push for Halladay

July 28, 2009 at 11:38 pm Leave a comment

Roy Halladay and Joe Maddon

The price is very steep for Toronto Blue Jay ace Roy Halladay. The Jays have already turned down offers from the Phillies and there was supposedly an offer on the table from the Red Sox for at least Clay Buchholz, Michael Bowden, and Ryan Westmoreland. If the Red Sox get the ace then they could probably run away with the AL East and have extra arms, like Brad Penny, that they can deal to get some prospects back.

Now is the time for the Rays to jump in and make a run at Halladay. They have been rumored to go after Victor Martinez and Cliff Lee but they don’t need offense and Lee, while a very good pitcher, may find the AL East very tough. This is why Roy Halladay is a must for the Rays.

Halladay has also killed the Rays this year. His numbers against the Rays are: 22 innings, 25/5 K/BB rate, and an ERA of 2.45 (although he did not register a single win). Halladay knows the AL East and how tough it can be; he has done all of his work in the AL East his entire career. Oh, and his career numbers against the Yankees are 16-5 with a 2.90 ERA in 223.1 innings.

The Rays will have to not only wow the Blue Jays but clear payroll to get Halladay. Here is what I suggest the Rays do:

1. Offer a starting package of Wade Davis, Reid Brignac, Nick Barnese, Alex Cobb, and Mitch Talbot. This is a package of three major league ready prospects and two high-potential lower level arms. This package has probability, depth, and upside. If this deal can get it done the Rays will still have other potential top of the rotation starters in their system like Jeremy Hellickson, Matt Moore, and Kyle Lobstein but it is possible one of those three might have to replace a name in the above deal to get a trade done.

2. To save money, do not re-sign Troy Percival, Gabe Kapler, Brian Shouse, Chad Bradford, Joe Nelson, Jason Isringhausen, and Akinori Iwamura. That clears over $14M from the books. The Rays have internal options and can find free agents at league minimum that can offer the same value.

3. Explore trades that involve: Scott Kazmir, Pat Burrell, and Dioner Navarro. Kazmir is owed $8M in 2010, $12M in 2011, and a $13.5M club option ($2.5M buyout) for 2012. He also gets an $800K bonus if traded. Burrell is owed $9M next season, and Navarro is robbing the Rays of $2.1M this season and is arbitration eligible for the second time in the offseason. The Rays could clear a ton of money if they trade any two of these players.

The Rays do have raises coming for a lot of their starting players, which makes a move even more difficult, but, the Rays also saved money in the draft this year and will likely save next year due to having picks in the latter half of the first round rather than in the top 10 like every other year of their existence.

With the addition of Halladay, the Rays immediately gain at least 3 wins and mightily increase their chances of making the playoffs, further increasing incoming money to cover the expense of Halladay’s contract, which is a complete bargain.

If the Rays have to give up a deal of Wade Davis, Jeremy Hellickson, Nick Barnese, Mitch Talbot, and Reid Brignac, which is by far the best offer the Jays would receive, then I think it would be worth a year and two months of Halladay and two first round picks once he leaves via free agency.

It may be a little far-fetched but the Rays have a chance to add Halladay and I think they must pull the trigger on him if they want to overtake the Red Sox and Yankees in the AL East.

Entry filed under: Uncategorized.

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