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Pierzynski’s Trade Value

2010/04/21

I’ve been busy, busy, busy this week, but I thought I’d quickly comment on this:

Pierzynski understands if this team continues to falter, he could be an important trade chip for general manager Ken Williams.

Pierzynski’s 10-and-5 rights kick in on June 14, meaning he’ll have 10 years in the Majors and five straight with one team, while also possessing veto power over any trade at that point. With Tyler Flowers waiting in the wings and seemingly correcting spring issues with his swing at Triple-A Charlotte, then the free-agent-to-be Pierzynski becomes a veteran candidate to be moved.

“I’m the one guy that they probably can move. I have an expiring contract; they can’t trade [Paul] Konerko because he has a full no-trade clause,” said Pierzynski.

Is he the one guy they could move? While A.J. has been terrible so far this season, I expect him to bounce back. Catcher is a position that seemingly is always in demand, so despite his prickly personality, ┬ásomeone should want him. I thought I’d consult Sky Kalkman’s trade value calculator, re-jiggered for 2010 free agent rates.

A.J. Pierzynski
Year Sal (M) WAR Val (M) Net (M)
2010 $4.9 1.3 $5.5 $0.6
2011
2012
2013
2014
2015
2016
2017
FA Picks $2.5
Total $4.9 1.4 $8.4 $3.1

You can add $2.5 million to his value if you think he’ll be ranked a Type A free agent. He’s on the bubble now as a Type A, if I understand Elias’ stupid ranking system correctly. This is figured he’s traded just right before he becomes a 10-and-5 player, so the salary and WAR figures are adjusted accordingly.

And here are Victor Wang’s prospect surplus values, adjusted to today’s values.

Top 10 hitting prospects 31.20
Top 11-25 hitters 21.45
Top 26-50 hitters 20.00
Top 51-75 hitters 12.14
Top 76-100 hitters 10.68
Top 10 pitching prospects 12.99
Top 11-25 pitchers 13.59
Top 26-50 pitchers 13.59
Top 51-75 pitchers 10.34
Top 76-100 pitchers 8.38
Grade B pitchers (as graded by Sickels) 6.24
Grade B hitters 4.70
Grade C pitchers 22 or younger 1.79
Grade C pitchers 23 or older 1.28
Grade C hitters 22 or younger 0.60
Grade C hitters 23 or older 0.43

So A.J. could net a B grade hitter (think a Brent Morel type player) or a couple of C grade pitching prospects. Or they could just keep him and net an extra draft pick, but that would involve offering arbitration, running the risk he’d accept. Flowers might be an upgrade over Pierzysnki now, and at worst he’s not much of a downgrade, so moving now would be wise, even if the return isn’t that much.

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