1. Padres acquire Cameron Maybin: The San Diego Padres and Florida Marlins have executed a trade today. The Marlins have agreed to trade Cameron Maybin to the Padres in exchange for relievers Ryan Webb and Edward Mujica. In 322 plate appearances this year for Florida, Maybin has hit only eight home runs with a batting average of .234 and had an on-base percentage of .302. He had a 75 OPS+, which is terrible. In 610 plate appearances spread out through four seasons, he has a 82 OPS+, which still is terrible. Not sure what San Diego plans on doing with Maybin, but he is going to need some extra work to try to get him to be good. They already have Tony Gwynn Jr. not playing well in San Diego’s outfield (75 career OPS+ in 1054 plate appearances).
While they are upgrading slightly with Maybin, it isn’t going to be getting the job done for San Diego. Webb was rated the 24th best prospect in the San Diego’s farm system according to Baseball America who has a 94-96 mph fastball with a strong mid-80s curveball according to Baseball America’s report. In 54 big league games for Ryan Webb, he has a 2.90 ERA, with an ERA+ of 127 which is very good. In 84.2 career innings pitched, he has a career ERA+ of 117 which is way above average (average is 100 remember) so that’s a good pick up for Florida. In 59 games this year, Mujica, who is arbitration eligible this winter for the first time, had an ERA of 3.62. He had an ERA+ of 102 which is just slightly above average. So last season was a good season for Mujica, but over his career in the majors, 233.1 innings pitched, he has an ERA+ of 88, which isn’t good. I think that Florida wins this trade as they get a very good young pitcher in Webb and a player with some upside in Mujica while San Diego gets another bad outfielder.
2. Oakland adds Edwin Encarnacion: The Oakland Athletics have claimed Edwin Encarnacion off of waivers from the Toronto Blue Jays. He hit 21 home runs this year for Toronto, which was more than anyone hit on the Athletics this season. While holding a batting average of .244 and having an on-base percentage of .304, Encarnacion had an OPS+ of 111 meaning that he had an above average season. Over a career that has spread six seasons and 2540 plate appearances, he has a batting average of .258 with an on-base percentage of .336. His OPS+ of 103 is slightly above average which is a good thing. I think that he should be able to provide the Athletics with some power to the lineup and he’ll supply his above average play as well, which is exactly what the Athletics are going to be looking forward to at third base since they got rid of Eric Chavez as he entered free agency.
3. Justin Morneau complains about Target Field: Target Field, the new home of the Minnesota Twins, is making small renovations to the stadium this offseason. Morneau is a little upset about the changes because they are not moving the fences in to fit what Morneau wants, which is an easier ability to hit home runs. This is totally selfish because the Twins did very well at Target Field this year having the best record in the American League at home with a 53-28 home record and 41-40 away record. While he said that the comments were not meant to come out selfish, that he was just looking at the team’s success doesn’t make much sense to me since the team did BETTER at home than they did on the road. Also, the team had a home record in 2009 of 49-33 and a home record in 2008 of 53-28 meaning that the fences being moved out and it being harder for the Twins to hit a home run isn’t really effecting the team as much as Morneau is thinking. Then Morneau makes the excuse that he isn’t fully recovered from the concussion yet. I guess that gives him the excuse to make whatever stupid comments he wants to make.
The Twins had a .282 batting average at home, .265 batting average on the road. The Twins had an on-base percentage of .354 at home and .328 on the road and the Twins’ slugging percentage at home was one point higher! (.422 at home, .421 on the road). So the demensions being pushed out are not only helping the Twins get their batting averages up, but it is also helping out their pitchers as the Twins’ pitchers have allowed 64 home runs at home and 91 home runs on the road while the Twins have hit 52 home runs at home and 90 home runs on the road. Don’t move the fences anywhere as they seem to be helping the Twins more than hurting them and stop Morneau from making public statements that make him look uneducated and selfish.