The Jim Hendry Way to Build a 40-man Roster

My latest little pet project at Wiklifield after completeing the team-by-team transactions is to put together player pages on the entire Cubs organizations from the majors to the minors. I got through the basic info on the 40-man roster this weekend and have discovered with some very simple coding, that I can start putting together some interesting lists. One such list is how the Cubs' 40-man roster was put together, so I thought I'd share.

So here's the breakdown from the Cubs' 40-man roster found at Wiklifield (not to be confused with the 40-man roster maintained by Arizona Phil):

Amateur Free Agent Signings (5): Esmailin Caridad, Welington Castillo, Rafael Dolis, Angel Guzman, Carlos Marmol, Carlos Zambrano*

Drafted (10): Mitch Atkins, Tyler Colvin, Sam Fuld, Micah Hoffpauir, Sean Marshall, Blake Parker, Jeff Samardzija, Geovany Soto, Ryan Theriot, Randy Wells

Free Agents(5): Marlon Byrd, Ryan Dempster, Kosuke Fukudome, Ted Lilly, Alfonso Soriano

Minor League Free Agents(2): Andres Blanco, Koyie Hill

Rule 5 Draft(2): Mike Parisi, David Patton

Trades(13): James Adducci, Jeff Baker, Justin Berg, Mike Fontenot, John Gaub, Tom Gorzelanny,  John Grabow*, Jeff Gray, Derrek Lee*, Marcos Mateo, Aramis Ramirez*, Carlos Silva*, Jeff Stevens

The * indicates players that were originally acquired via some other method than free agency, but then were either signed to extensions before hitting the open market or resigned once they did. There's also the case of Carlos Silva who was traded for a player signed through free agency and then basically a swap of big and bad contracts. That's 4 players that although originally acquired on the cheap, eventually cashed in big time with the Cubs and make it 5 with Silva who already cashed in with the Seattle Mariners.

So for this exercise, you could give a half credit for originally acquiring Lee, Grabow, Ramirez and Zambrano through cheaper methods than free agency, but were eventually paid free agent bucks (or close to it) by the Cubs. Silva you might as well call a free agent. So doing a little fuzzy math gets you 7.5 via free agency, 4.5 through amateur free agent signings and 10.5 via trades. That still means Hendry has certainly earned his "Trader Jim" moniker.

Of course, the next thing to do is compare this with other clubs, first in the division and then by payroll to see how Hendry compares to his peers. Breaking down the entire league would probably take more time than I have, but I did go through the St. Louis Cardinals. Here's what I came up with:

Drafted(23), Free Agents(9), Rule 5(1), Amateur Free Agents(2), Trades(3).

A lot of the free agents are bullpen arms which aren't going to break the bank and Chris Carpenter was signed on the cheap originally as a rehab project and then cashed in, very similarly to Ryan Dempster. I counted Ryan Ludwick as a free agent signing although I guess he could be considered a minor league free agent signing if you wanted to. Pujols was originally drafted and of course cashed in since then.

What does it all mean? I'm not sure other than I found it interesting and there's probably a 100 different ways to build a better mousetrap.

Comments

interesting article on evaluating sinkerballers http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/index.php/staring-down-the-sinkerballers-part-two/ here's Part 1 http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/index.php/staring-down-the-sinkerballers-part-one

This is an interesting concept, but in order to make it a useful tool, you're missing an awful lot of info, IMO. Eventually, you'd want to look at all teams across a number of years to try to identify correlations between how rosters were constructed (relative to expenses available) and on-field performance. Also, I think "trades" is definitely too broad of a category. Aramis Ramirez as a Cub and Bobby Hill as a Pirate are not really comparable. Even though both players were acquired via trade, the circumstances were so polar that they almost deserve to be coded as separate categories. That creates another problem - the subjectivity of whether a certain player's trade was a salary dump (Ramirez) or a shrewd move by management (Dontrelle Willis). I like the idea that you've touched upon here, but there's a lot of missing information before this could be a useful tool.

more an exercise of interest than anything...didn't mean to imply anything useful...at least not without going through the rest of the rosters. BP had a neat article recently that I can't seem to find the link to, breaking down the number of wins each team got from premarket and postmarket players.

Eric Byrnes released: http://twitter.com/dbackswriter/statuses/7998298088 At least he as a TV career.

to Blue Jays... More on Sheets http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/story/MLB-offseason-buzz-012010

Kinda eye-opening to see the Cards have outdrafted our 40 man roster 23-10. You never really think of them as having top notch Minor league systems.

what's interesting about the Cards is they seem to have absolutely no presence in Latin America, their 2 amateur free agent signings are Francisco Samuel from the D.R. and Josh Kinney who they signed from independent ball. of course you need a more robust examination of the entire system, but thought that was intriguing.

The difference between the two is explained almost entirely by drafted and traded. If the Cubs trade the guys they draft, which they do, then they wind up with fewer drafted players and more traded players.

Brewers, 1/4.25M with 6.5M option and 1M buyout

Looks like Carrie Muskat was weighting for everyone else who wanted to write about Geo Soto "losing" 40 lbs before she finally weighed in with this, <a href="http://chicago.cubs.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20100120&content_id=7943056&vkey=news_chc&fext=.jsp&c_id=chc"> Soto slims down prior to season </a>. An article about how Geo has slimmed down has turned into a rite of spring for Carrie. She wrote basically the same thing last year and the year before that and the year before that. Last year's column, which you may have forgotten about, was called <a href="http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20090212&content_id=3821240&vkey=news_chc&fext=.jsp&c_id=chc"> Soto maintains aggressive approach</a> and even though Geo was around 20 lbs heavier than the year before at that time it didn't stop Carrie from writing this <blockquote>2-12-09 Pitchers and catchers report on Friday. Soto looks as if he's lost weight, but says that he's at his playing weight. "I just tried to do the same thing," Soto said of his workout program. "You have to prepare for the season for eight months. You might as well go to the track and the field and work on what you need to work on. When you're down [weight-wise], it's easier to keep it down." </blockquote> But then Geo went off to join the WBC Puerto Rico team where he ballooned another 20lbs up to around 250. 4 springs in a row, same news about Soto. He's in great shape when he shows up. So, I'm just guessing but it looks to me like Geo's problem isn't showing up in great shape, it's keeping the weight off once he starts playing baseball again.

heath bell empathizes.

http://sports.yahoo.com/mlb/blog/big_league_stew/post/Big-League-Stew-Blogbook-Chicago-Cubs?urn=mlb,214605 thanks to Carlos for the heads up to get us included

You know who would make a lot of sense as a RH setup man who could step in if Marmol continues to implode? Kevin Gregg.

Kevin Gregg is steadily mediocre.

You're right. I retract my suggestion of Kevin Gregg, and put forth Mariano Rivera as the reasonable target for an 8th inning reliever.

lol I can see The Real Neal and I are both ready for the season to start already.

Pssh. The season's over. At least there's always 2011.

It will be heaven in two thousand eleven.

http://twitter.com/KenDavidoff/status/8007943374 Angels seem to be his top choice http://twitter.com/KenDavidoff/status/8007710081 probably makes Mets more interested in Sheets unfortunately

cubs sign scott mcclain to a minor league deal...lulz.

needed there Jason Dubois AAAA'er for the year...

http://www.baseballamerica.com/blog/prospects/?p=7444 signed C Mark Johnson as well Clay Rapada signed with Rangers

http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/story/chicago-cubs-kiko-calero-012010 entered negotiations, he wants 2 years, Cubs offering 1

that took long enough to leak...wonder how long the years thing has been a sticking point.

Two year deal for a guy coming off rotator cuff issues, is Jim Hendry smart. He does K a lot of people though. Plus he has his own intro song: http://www.clevver.com/music/video/138986/los-lobos-kiko-and-the-lavender-moon-video.html

Calero made $500,000 last year with the Marlins, and his highest salary ever was $1.6 million with the A's in 2007. If Hendry offers $1.5 million (perhaps some incentives for games finished) on a one-year deal and signs Nady/Dye for around %3.5 million, the roster should be finished at close to $137 million. Nady and Dye are two of the most liked and repsected players in the game, and either one would bring substantial intagibles to the clubhouse.

Los Lobos is probably my favorite band, and Kiko is probably their best album. Excellent.

http://www.wrigleyville23.com/2010-articles/january/peavy-wanted-to-be-a-cub.html

According to Fox News in Phoenix: A source close to the Ricketts family says they want to keep the Cubs spring training in Mesa. http://www.myfoxphoenix.com/dpp/sports/mlb/cubs/source-cubs-likely-to-stay-in-mesa-1-20-2010

The price of TCR stock just jumped in after-hours trading.

Did you just call bullish on Arizona Phil? : )

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