Aaron Miles and Jake Fox Traded To A's

Few details at the moment but Aaron Miles and Jake Fox plus a $1M are going to the Oakland Athletics for RHP Jeff Gray and two more prospects. Refresh for updates...

UPDATE #1: The other two prospects look to be 21 year old RHP Ronny Morla and 23 year old OF/1B Matt Spencer.

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Comments

that is such bullshit.

we give away mike weurtz to the A's cuz lou won't play him and now we give away jake fox in order to lure the A's to take a couple million of our payroll.

just cuz the manager won't play the guys doesn't mean we gotta give them away...yeesh.

btw...that rant is based on it being ronny morla and matt spence as part of the deal as i was told...

So let me see if I have this straight. To free up $1.7MM in payroll that he utterly wasted on Miles last winter, Hendry has to give Oakland a player better than the three "prospects" combined that he's getting in return? Nice gig if you can get it, huh? Remind me again how this fat fuck keeps his job.

Prediction: Jake Fox has 11 big league homers. I predict that these three prospects will never combine for as much as 11 big league innings played.

I will take that bet for a cool $1,000,000.

Before you accept, please note that Gray already has 31 innings.

Aaron Miles follows Macias and Ne!f! and the rest down the path of Hendry MI Shame.

Fox has the better minor league track record and is slightly younger, but Hendry did in fact acquire the player who had the higher MLB value in 2009 according to FanGraphs. Yes, stats can lie, but so can your eyes. Maybe we'll get lucky for once.

some craziness about Vicente Padilla and the Cubs

http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2009/12/cubs-an...

It's Hendry's continued testing to see just what level of headcase player his $4 million manager can actually manage.

Jake Fox is viewed as a hitter without a position. In truth, he can play several positions, but none of them very well. Hitting is his strength and he probably is better suited for the AL.

Trading Miles was a good move on Hendry's part. I didn't think anyone would take him, so getting anything for him is good.

The problem I have with the trade is that it uses up two trade chips that could better be used in a more important trade (i.e. for a player the Cubs actually need).

It uses up one trade chip that could have been used to get something the Cubs need, Jake Fox.

Aaron Miles would likely detract value from most potential deals because he is overpaid and easily replaceable (from within most teams' farm systems).

don't have time to do dossiers on these guys at the moment, but Gray's one of those great stuff, can't control it guys. Can never have enough bullpen arms and I assume he has some option years left.

the other 2 from their numbers look like a 22-yr old kid that K's a lot of hitters and a corner outfielder/1b type with a lot of power and not much else but from the left side...Jake Fox's mirror image in other words.

in 08 gray suddenly added 2-4mph on his fastball (low 90s to mid 90s) and traded some of his control for it.

he had a VERY straight-as-an-arrow low 90s fastball for years. by dialing it up it gives his fastball more movement, but at the expense of his control.

The first thing that jumps at me as to why Gray probably had much greater MLB success in 09 than AAA/MLB success in 07 and 08 is because of the drop in BB/9. Of course, the K/9 comes down too, but at least at first glance it seemed to work for him last year (116 ERA+).

So just stop him from walking guys somehow and then settle for less K's.

Disclaimer: I've never seen this guy pitch, and I don't suppose to know what I'm talking about.

see comment above.

he's also extremely athletic with a great work ethic.

i don't like how he throws, myself. he keeps in great shape at least. also, don't fool yourself looking at numbers...he's still hittable.

when he's "on" he can control his high velocity FB low in the zone making it look like it's got some sink. he still throws a lot of stuff straight even at the higher velocity even though it added more movement than he used to have.

What else does he throw?

he actually throws just about f'n everything.

he's one of those guys who never really found a secondary pitch, but can throw a slider, change, curve, etc because he's tried to throw them all over the years.

his slider is his main secondary.

So he's somewhat similar to Kyle Farnsworth, with less heat and a little more movement on his fastball?

Can we call him Albino Farns? What ever happened to Black Farns?

Wait a minute... Why are the Cubs paying $1 million to Oakland? Isn't getting the short end of the stick on the players enough?

Welcome to Jim Hendry's way of thinking, Sweet Lou.

Hendry makes another bad signing with Miles and we lose Fox and a million bucks for the privilege of getting 3 fringe players. Nice move, Jimbo. If Piniella can't see the value of Fox, despite his mediocre glove, being a cheap, team controlled player for 4 more seasons who can fill in when Soriano and Aramis get their yearly injuries, we're just screwed. It just smacks of being hypocritical. We have crappy fielders at almost every position and Lou rants about Fox. Typical Cubbery.

fwiw, Spencer was traded as part of the Blanton deal

his numbers look a lot like Jake Fox's when he was 23..

I'm just glad Hendry didn't throw in Marmol or Vitters to sweeten the deal for Oakland.

The answer Sweet Lou is because Miles was completely miserable last year. 1,000,000 dollars out of the 140 million we are going to spend is not much. The result is that we no longer have a 5'2" worthless "utility" player taking up a roster spot...well worth the money. The bad move was signing Miles in the first place, not trading him for prospects. In my opinion, the odds of Jeff Gray being productive are about as high as the odds of Aaron Miles being productive...plus you save 1.7 million off of his terrible, terrible contract.

For those angry about Fox...clearly we weren't getting better offers for Fox. I think all the Jake Fox lovers actually love him more than they should simply because when he played, he was NOT Soriano and NOT Bradley. Let's remember who Fox is...a nice guy but a guy that can't play the field and can't hit a breaking ball.

Lol...yes, and it's getting so late in the off season that they had to get something done. Kudos for getting rid of Miles I suppose.

As for Fox's fielding, I've seen a lot worse players out there than him He'll never be conssidered a good fielder, but taken into consideration how little 3B he played in the minors, he did well enough in short stretches.

Meh...off to a roaring start?

http://blogs.dailyherald.com/node/3023

confirms the $1M being sent over..

lame.

that's one thing Bradley did last year...

come on down, Carlos Silva....

http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2009/12/mariner...

holy crap their web site design keeps getting worse. at least their ad servers are intelligent...they fed me horticulture ads. woo tracking cookies.

Crunch.......grows weed

I wish...

Unfortunately, part of working in horticulture is avoiding that whole "getting a felony in the field you want to work" thing.

It's like a trying to be a bus driver with a DWI conviction on your record.

Also, I'm not into prison buttsex or lawyer's fees.

Have you tried prison fees with lawyer buttsex? It's aces.

"Also, I'm not into prison buttsex or lawyer's fees."

That's not what I was told...

bwhahaha.

hola c-los.

Mwahaha; win. I miss you guys.

According to comments in this blog, Moria only has one more year before the Rule 5 and he was in A ball in 2009. Sounds like a waste of a body for the organization.

http://www.nesn.com/2009/12/cubs-may-be-prime...

Cubs May Be Primed to Throw Loads of Cash at Jason Bay

and

Evans Clinchy graduated from Tufts University with a degree in English. While at Tufts, he was a columnist for the Tufts Daily.

obviously not one in economics, or one that teaches you to read newspapers or research

I read the article and was hoping I would find a well-reasoned argument for why the Cubs are players for Bay. I didn't find it. The article makes no sense.

If Jimbo was going to throw "alot" of money at Bay, it would make more sense to throw a little more money for Holliday who actually is a compant OF who could play RF.

that would be nice. he can play CF, though he never got the chance to too much in PIT. decent ball tracking skills up the middle (it's hard for some to track the ball initially off the bat playing center-straight facing the batter).

he can't even play LF

http://www.chicagobreakingsports.com/2009/12/...

Cubs' GM Jim Hendry called Gray a "power arm who can come in and compete in the bullpen" when the team reports to spring training.

"He's got the stuff to be able to pitch in any area of the bullpen if he would harness it better," Hendry said.

and

As for Miles, he was on the outs with manager Lou Piniella going back to spring training. He is owed $2.7 million for 2010, so moving his salary helps the Cubs trim some of their payroll and eliminate a player who would have seen little playing time.

at this point if you actually speak to Lou during the 162-game season, he doesn't like you...

Miles musta woken a sleeping Lou in dugout. Let the man sleep.

I'm fine with the deal. Fox really didn't have a role here, and considering his age, along with the probability that we may have to take Pat Burrell, plus the 1.7 million savings (which might really be the key, considering how tight things are financially), we got a usable pen arm in Jeff Gray (I don't buy him as a late inning type), an upper level positional piece (granted, I don't think Spencer is more than a Quad-A type, although there is some pop that if he improves on things, maybe his bat develops into Jake Fox-ish), and Ronny Morla.

Morla's the intriguing one to me. Big, lanky guy who likely will physically mature some more. Low 90's fastball, throws strikes, and a decent change so far. There's a lot to like.

Considering what we gave up, and where things stand for the organization now and in the near future, I'm fine with this deal.

my main issue is with the 2 others besides gray.

i'm not a gray fan, but he's not some value-less piece of crap.

overall, this comes off as pretty unsatisfying to me. as much as gray is a neat gamble i'd settle for the RH power option off the bench gamble.

i don't feel hendry got fleeced, but it doesn't do anything for me.

Who backs up 3rd?

Jeff Baker.

Who plays second?

you are asking questions that need to be asked in two months. clearly they are rebuilding the bench. no more miles, no more fox, no arbitration for Johnson...let's pump the brakes a little bit.

not that I remotely agree with any of this, but I imagine the plan would be move Baker to third and then Fontenot or his replacement plays 2b, could call up Castro and move Theriot to 2b, Blanco as well could play middle infield...

basically what they did with DeRosa, he shifted to third and Fontenot played 2b...

I agree with scenarios where we don't replace Ramirez's bat with Neifi Perez's, I mean with Blanco's or Scales's bats.

Right now I would guess Barney and Blanco duke it out for the middle infielder spot.

What's gotten into the Mariners? They're players for Bay, they're interested in Harden, and now they are front runners for Figgins. That's $35-$40 million per year right there.

Look at all the money they had come off the books - something like $50-60 million I think I read.

I was trying to come up with a Jake Fox comp, best I could was Chris Shelton, but that's pretty tenous...

BP has names like Matt LecRoy, Jason LaRue and Ryan Garko
guess they still count him as a catcher...

Fox reminds me a bit of someone like Julio Zuleta, I doubt he'll be missed.

It does free up a little money for Rob's snowball chance in hell (aka Figgins) or Hudson or a 4th starter.

I like the deal. Even organization soldiers, which is the worst that Morla and Spencer are going to be have some value, and Hendry frees up $1.7 million to spend in a market that looks like it will yield better values than last year's did.

Jacques Jones wants to come back and play in 2010. The Cubs outfield problems are solved.

http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2009/12/odds-en...

"Let's remember who Fox is...a nice guy but a guy that can't play the field and can't hit a breaking ball."

Jake Fox is Matt Stairs but younger, and he cannot hit a breaking ball as he did not "adjust back" to the league.

As we said all last year, Jim Hendry is just out of it. Half of me wants the team to fail miserably in 2010 (which they look like they are working on already), so that Ricketts just has to let the knucklehead go.

Jake had no position on the team, is an AL DH (where he should get some AB's) and Miles, like Bradley were TOTAL fuck-ups by the aforementioned GM. Its the usual "our crap for yours". Jake was a cut above crap, but the NL does not have a DH.

No one hits breaking pitches. Good hitters lay off them and wait for hangers or fastballs.

Sure Neal, of course, but from what I have read, he can't hit breaking "strikes" on the inner part of the plate.

I liked him, and he was useful last year - but really there wasn't much room for him - even though like many here, I think that the Cubs will struggle to be around .500 in 2010.

I don't remember that so much. What I remember him having trouble with was laying off pitches that broke off of the plate. Things on the inner half got pretty much clobbered.

If I am reading fangraphs correctly, it looks like he hit approximately the same % of pitches in the strike zone that Derrek Lee did.

Shin-Soo Choo, Ryan Howard and Kendry beg to differ.

Take out hanging sliders and curves from those numbers and get back to me.

Did you read the article?

2010 is going to suck

As for the trade, I dont really know what value Fox had. He is a horrible defensive player who cant layoff sliders so I think it a fool's errand to say he was a good trade chip. I think Gray and the 1.5 mil we save on payroll by dumping Miles is a decent return.

he's just got nice power, a nice effortless swing, and doubles/HR power.

i doubt he's the next big thing, but honestly, i'd like to see fox on the bench in 2010 finding 250-350 ab's.

i think they could use that more than another pen option like gray in 2010.

The swing doesn't look effortless to me, but I still would've liked to hold onto Fox in case of injuries to Aram/Lee/Soriano/Whoever is in RF.

I assume this means that Hoffpauir has a place on the bench?

Fox was working pretty hard when he hit #11. Nearly fell over doing it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_DxD9Ob_Vqg

Quit talking about Soriano
Let's stay on topic here

This off season will be about clearing $$$$ so big Jim can eat more of bradleys salary i guess he just ate about 2 million more.
This sounds like last two years lets focus on one move publicize it so all teams know what we need to do.
Somehow i think some rather good teams are more gaurded
in press statements.

I'd feel better about the 1.7 in savings if I had more faith in Hendry to not give the money to Paul Bako or Koyie Hill.

Dave Kaplan is doing some more harding hitting journalism involving hot baseball wives and girlfriends...

http://www.chicagonow.com/blogs/david-kaplan-...

Dammit - that's another reason to hate the Chad Gaudin trade! Holly ballz!! She was smuggling midgets!

Interesting notes from Levine on his blog:
http://espn.go.com/chicago/columns/blog/_/pos...

Hendry compares Gray to Guzman and sounds excited about him. Also says that this deal had nothing to do with Milton. Yeah, sure.

Gray: Doesn't matter.

Submitted by Rob G. on Thu, 12/03/2009 - 5:53pm.
don't have time to do dossiers on these guys at the moment, but Gray's one of those great stuff, can't control it guys. Can never have enough bullpen arms and I assume he has some option years left.

the other 2 from their numbers look like a 22-yr old kid that K's a lot of hitters and a corner outfielder/1b type with a lot of power and not much else but from the left side...Jake Fox's mirror image in other words.

==================================

ROB G: Jeff Gray has one minor league option left.

Submitted by John Beasley on Thu, 12/03/2009 - 6:33pm.
According to comments in this blog, Moria only has one more year before the Rule 5 and he was in A ball in 2009. Sounds like a waste of a body for the organization.

===========================

JOHN B: Ronny Morla and Matt Spencer will be eligible for the Rule 5 Draft for the first time post-2010.

I have seen quite a bit of Morla out here over the past three years (he was at Extended Spring Training 2007-09), because the Cubs play mostly the A's, Giants, and Angels in Minor League Spring Training, EXST, and Instructs. He is somewhat comparable to Robert Hernandez, a bit raw but with some upside.

And I saw Spencer play quite a bit in his college days at Arizona State and then a little bit in Minor League Camp (ST), and I would compare him to Micah Hoffpauir (1B-LF-RF). While Hoffpauir is the better defender at 1B, Spencer has a stronger arm and is a better corner OF, although he can play 1B, too.

The Cubs had to throw in Jake Fox just to unload Aaron Miles. Real smooth, Hendry.

I'm not all for Jake Fox or anything... I like him, but he's not an impact player (nor future impact player for that matter), so whatever. My biggest problem is how shitty Hendry was at his job last off season and how it is still affecting the team, even in December '09.

The silver lining to all this: Aaron Miles is gone. Fuck him. Kind of wish he was stuck in Kansas City, Canada, or Minnesota or somewhere besides warm, sunny Oakland, but oh well... he's someone else's problem now.

More scouting reports from Mayo...

http://muskat.mlblogs.com/archives/2009/12/12...

http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2009/12/asking-...

DeRosa wants 3/yrs at $9M each, Beltre wants $10M a year

no wonder they signed Polanco

Yikes. I'll take the under on DeRosa and the under on Beltre unless he signs a one-year deal.

Now that Fox and Miles are off the roster, I've been thinking about what the cubs should do with the rest of the lineup this offseason.

1. Offer Orlando Hudson a 1 year deal in the 3 to 3.5 range. Make the offer with a must sign date of 12/12 because he will effect the next chain of events.

2. Assuming Hudson agrees, Non-Tender Fontenot. The 1.7 from the Miles/Fox Deal plus Fontenot's likely 1 million will be almost enough money to pay Hudson.

3. Get Lou,Milton Bradley and Hendry in a room together to see if the relationship can be salvaged. The more I hear, the more I don't see a way to improve from Milton's production in 2010. Better to keep him and hope he builds value at this point.

4. Target Rocco Baldelli as a 4th Outfielder, 3 outfield postion defensive, Kfuk platoon mate. Figure 1 Million plus some small incentives would be enough. He should be in line for 250-400 At bats with a Soriano-Bradley-Fukudome Outfield.

5. Target a AAAA corner OF slugger to stash in Iowa. (Mike Restovich?). Cubs organizational Outfield depth is thin.

6. Offer Koyie Hill his old job back for 750K max. If he doesn't agree then replace him. Surely he would accept.

Looking at a Lineup of

Cf Kfuk
2b Hudson
3b Rammy
1b DLee
LF Soriano
Rf Bradley
C Soto
SS Theriot

Bench of

Koyie Hill: Backup catcher

Blanco: SS backup, late inning defensive wiz

Hoffpauir: 1b, corner OF backup. Primary LH Pinch Hitter

Baker: 2b,3b primary backup

Baldelli: All 3 OF position backup, Fukudome platoon mate

is Fuld the backup when Baldelli gets injured?

Bradley's gone though, it ain't being salvaged

we may not have a choice but to salvage things with bradley. I hate it but at the same time I would relish in the punishment he would take day in and day out in cubbie blue......... I wonder if he would void his contract after a few weeks of abuse. that would clear up some money for us :D

He would just sit on the bench and collect his money, smirking at Lou the whole time.

if he refused to play then that would be legal grounds for termination of his contract.

But he wouldn't refuse to play, he would be faking an injury and limping around and half-heartedly swing when he was at the plate.

At least that's how the story goes.

If you were Hudson would you sign a $3.5 one year deal this early in the off-season? He made what, about $7 million last year?

Hill is pre-arb, right? We can give him whatever we want.

He made 3.38 and was declined arbitration.

Koyie Hill is arbitration eligible according to Dr. PHil's sidebar.

http://spreadsheets.google.com/pub?key=p4ew-f...

base salaray was $3.5 or whatever but it had very easily attainable PA incentives to protect themselves from his wrist injury...

http://www.insidesocal.com/dodgers/2009/02/co...

my rough math came up with about $8M, although $.5M is deferred...

Agreed. O-dawg won't go for less than 7 mil... easily. Derosa will get his money and it won't be the Cubs. The only recession going on this off season is the talent recession felt by the Cubs organization.

Beltre... $10 mil a year? I hope no one falls for that. There's always a dumbass GM somewhere, though.

You know how Aaron doesn't like the facts. Why bring them up?

Dick

I got the info from Cots. The Espn the mag this month speculated that he would have to take a paycut from the 3.38 he made last year. Neither mentioned the incentives.

I would have liked to have seen what Rudy Jaramillo could do with Fox and Hoffpauir. Now, I guess that's just Hoffpauir.

I'm not particularly angry by the trade, just confused that the Cubs don't want to put any more organizational effort behind Jake Fox when it seems he's been game to try anything to add value to the team.

via Rotoworld and Olney

Rival executives have informed ESPN.com's Buster Olney that the Tigers will listen to offers but are not actively shopping Curtis Granderson.
"I think they might be reconsidering their position on that," said one official. "Maybe they reacted to the response they got (in Detroit) to the news that Granderson might be moved. I think they would have to be overwhelmed."

Levine has updated his blog to indicate that Hendry is looking to involve an additional team or two into the Bradley-Burrell-Castillo swap.

Hendry has shown an ability to pull off these more complicated multi-team deals, and one has to wonder if teams like the Angels (Matthews, Jr.) will bring their bad contracts to this white elephant sale. By involving more teams, the Cubs may be able to spread around some of Bradley's 2011 contract and actually save some money.

http://espn.go.com/blog/sweetspot/post/_/id/1...

a case for Edgar making the HOF

http://mlb.fanhouse.com/2009/12/04/expect-fas...

asked for Scherzer back from Diamonbacks

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/12/02/sports/base...

The total of 108 players who received exemptions for attention deficit disorder is about 9 percent of the roughly 1,200 major league players.

A study commissioned by the National Institute of Mental Health in 2006 found that 4.4 percent of adults ages 18 to 44 in the United States experienced symptoms of attention deficit disorder and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.

neifi perez approves.

I can read this an conclude if your kid is male and has ADD he's about twice as likely to be a major league ballplayer.

Although it looks like 90% of Cubs fans like the trade, an awful lot of people are looking at it from a Chicago-centric point of view. Basically they see it as a hat-in-hand Hendry knocking on doors and begging GM's to take Aaron Miles off his hands and asking them what it would take to make that happen. "Jake Fox and a million bucks? You got it. He's yours! Thanks man."

Which would have been pathetic if it had gone down that way.

More likely though, it was a case of the A's approaching the Cubs because they wanted Jake Fox. They sure seem happy to have gotten him, as opposed to Miles who is getting second billing.

With Fox as the centerpiece, the deal looks a lot better. Having fallen out of favor with Lou, Jake didn't have a role with the Cubs next year. But he helped us unload Aaron Miles, freed up a couple million bucks, opened some roster spots and restocked the farm (at least for one year) in preparation for some losses there when the inevitable Bradley trade goes down.

The Bay Area media are looking at this trade the same way I am. John Shea of the S.F. Chronicle posted:

To help convince the Cubs to part with Fox, the A's agreed to take on most of Miles' 2010 salary, $1.7 million of $2.7 million.

Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/...

FWIW, Fangraphs says Miles has on average been worth $1.6 million per year.

Per MLB Trade Rumors, Figgins close to signing with Mariners for 4/$36 million, and Rockies interested in Orlando Hudson.

new thread up is up and Figgins trade is mentioned fwiw...

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