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Poll: What do you think of the Matt Capps trade?


By washingtonpost.com Sports editor  |  July 30, 2010; 12:17 AM ET
Categories:  Matt Capps , trade deadline  
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Next: The Matt Capps-Wilson Ramos trade from all angles

Comments

First!
Not unexpected with Storen set to be the closer of the future. Not sure Ramos is as good a prospect as Flores at catcher, but he's a better bat than Will Nieves and Pudge is only good for about a half season at his age. Now if we could only get more STARTING pitching.

Posted by: daddy00 | July 30, 2010 1:41 AM | Report abuse

Well Adam Kilgore, I think Minnesota benefitted mightily immediately in making this trade move. Everyone can only guess and wait as Washington is building for a dream of having a great young cast of future potential talent. Wilson Ramos would never replace Joe Mauer and he was not exactly burning up his first half year at Rochester. I know nothing about left hand Joe Testa. I know Minnesota badly acquired an "All-Star" closer to replace their fallen "All-Star" closer Joe Nathan. I think Billy Smith looks like a genius. Minnesota threw two unproven minor league players at Washington, and got a classy major league kid who can really help his new team. Jon Rauch was an emergency closer when All-Star Joe Nathan blew his elbow out in spring training. Every Twin feared their new season at Target Field could be lost, and at worst Nathan could be done forever. Nobody knew who would come-in and fill the closer role. Would it be Matt Guerrier, Jon Rauch, or Francisco Liriano? Neither Guerrier or Rauch throw hard. If Francisco Liriano had assumed Nathan's role I can tell you Minnesota's starting rotation would have been lost because both he and Carl Pavano are basically Minnesota's only two top consistent throwers. Franky does throw hard but also had no experience as a closer. Things currently in fact are so unsettling in Minnesota's starting rotation that middle reliever Brian Duensing replaced Nick Blackburn's spot last week. Duensing's move harms an already depleted bullpen that suffered losing Rauch to close to begin 2010. Rauch did admirably as a set-up guy promoted to close, saving 21 of 25, but I see this as way over achieving. Rauch had minimal experience prior to 2010 saving just 18 combined with Arizona and Washington. Rauch remains well-suited as a set-up guy, but not as a closer. He has poise, guile, and he has savvy, but he pitches to contact. This is scary for a closer to do. He has four great pitches particularly his curve ball, but he cannot throw heat something that a closer essentially needs. Every outing makes every Twin nervous because Rauch usually puts runners on base pitching to contact. Coming out of the All-Star break Rauch was edgy and out of sorts. He did not get his first save of the second half until last Wednesday! Now, Matt Capp comes in and completes Minnesota's bullpen. Capp comes to a true Major League contender and has the best catcher as his receiver. Rauch returns to his true role as a set-up guy and finally solidifies Minnesota's bullpen again. Every Twin can breathe a sigh of relief. Matt Capp is Minnesota's big piece to the missing puzzle. They waited and waited to find a closer and now they got one for a big run and moreover he is around for 2011. Washington looks like they traded their only All-Star for Wilson Ramos. This is big victory for Minnesota.

Posted by: JBarghini | July 30, 2010 5:07 AM | Report abuse

DaddyO - I tend to agree with you on the prospects of both catchers but Flores can't get on the field. If this guy can get on the field that would be a distinct advantage at this point...hitting some singles and throwing some people out would be a bonus compared to Flores.

Definitely agree about the pitching!

I watched the O's game last night and they stink! I mean, they really stink.

Posted by: authorofpoetry | July 30, 2010 8:21 AM | Report abuse

I think that Mr. Rizzo deserves a standing ovation for this one. I really enjoyed hearing the "Final Countdown" as the Mad Capper ran in from the bullpen, but he was having a career year and the Nats were able to sell high.

If this team is to compete in 2011 and beyond, it needs to be about stockpiling top flight prospects and creating the types of clogs in the system that the Twins have (i.e., Ramos wasn't going anywhere with Mauer ahead of him). Even if Flores gets right again, it is a great problem to have.

Posted by: FromBuccostoNats | July 30, 2010 9:45 AM | Report abuse

Daddy00--Flores and Ramos don't necessarily have to work out. Because of the injury to Flores I'd actually be pretty surprised to see him regain his previous status as a prospect. The real prospect is Derek Norris, who's playing in Potomac this year and will (hopefully) be ready for MLB in 2012. IMO if Norris works out whoever's at C in 2011-2012 will end up switching positions or get traded.

Posted by: CJMARTIN04 | July 30, 2010 9:57 AM | Report abuse

Ramos is the real deal; the Twins like the way he handles pitchers and throws out runners. He also hits well with RISP. He was not going to be anything but a back up with Mauer and the Twins thought it better for him to get playing time in the minors rather than sit on the bench behind Mauer. I agree that Flores has problems staying on the field and is a big question mark. That said, you can't have enough good catcher prospects and a number of other clubs were trying to get Ramos. He is a good pick for building the club and can play for the Nats or be used to trade for other quality prospects/players. Finally, Matt Capps has been good for the team and is a good guy- I am glad that he got traded to a contender and wish him all of the best; now is the time to see if Storen is the closer of the future,

Posted by: Phillip258 | July 30, 2010 10:08 AM | Report abuse

The Nats were sorely in need of good backup catching and now they have someone who can figure into their future while they give up someone who they only had for one year and would have been costly to retain. Capps did a great job as a Nat and brought a level of excitement to the game - he will be missed, but the Nats' bullpen is fairly strong and resilient - they should be able to absorb the loss without too much, if any, downside. Overall, the team is stronger with this trade - good job Mr. Rizzo! Long-sighted Nats fans should praise and support this move and look forward to more like this.

Posted by: kenkeller48 | July 30, 2010 10:38 AM | Report abuse

I know there's plenty to pick over with Capps (Opp. Batting Avg., etc.), but he IS a proven, All-Star reliever. And I know they've got Storen, and perhaps the catcher prospect fills a hole.....

But it's hard not to feel like the driver here was $$$. Lerners don't want to pay what they would have to pay the $7M-$8M to keep Capps. To me, keep your bullpen deep and robust - when the Nats have been winning this season, in the spring and now, the bullpen has been the key. And take a little more time to see what we've got with Storen at the ML level. This move jeopardizes what has been a strength.

Hard not to feel like we've got another ownership where the bottom line is not winning, the bottom line is the bottom line. (Light a candle for Steinbrenner, my friends - he may have been infantile, but he didn't water down the beer.)

Posted by: JefComment | July 30, 2010 10:53 AM | Report abuse

It all boils down to whether you want a great closer now, or another prospect waiting in the wings. I don't like the deal. What good is a strong pitching rotation these days without a closer? I am getting tired of all the stockpiling of prospects. Its time for some of these guys to step up. I will wait on purchasing more tixs till I see some results from all these trades. And DO NOT get rid of Dunn.

Posted by: dougw3 | July 30, 2010 10:58 AM | Report abuse

I think this comment thread has the one of the only people who really think this was a bad deal for the Nats.

Ken Rosenthal: "Twins trading young C (Ramos) for a reliever under one more year of control (Capps). Classic short-term, impulsive move"

BA: "It's a sound move by Washington, kicking in cash to buy low on a solid catching prospect. A quality reliever like Capps has little value to a last-place club like the Nationals... Ramos, 22, has ranked as the Twins' No. 3, No. 3 and No. 2 prospect the last three seasons"

Keith Law: "Will write up later, but as you'd expect I love the Capps deal for the Nationals."

Rotoworld: "What in the world did Twin GM Bill Smith just do? Ramos has struggled at the Triple-A level this season and has no future with the Joe Mauer-led Twins, but to deal a top catching prospect for a middle relief rental seems misguided."

I'm sure somewhere, there's a professional baseball person outside of the Twins front office that likes this deal for them, I just haven't seen it yet.

Posted by: CharlieF | July 30, 2010 11:06 AM | Report abuse

I think this comment thread has the one of the only people who really think this was a bad deal for the Nats.

Ken Rosenthal: "Twins trading young C (Ramos) for a reliever under one more year of control (Capps). Classic short-term, impulsive move"

BA: "It's a sound move by Washington, kicking in cash to buy low on a solid catching prospect. A quality reliever like Capps has little value to a last-place club like the Nationals... Ramos, 22, has ranked as the Twins' No. 3, No. 3 and No. 2 prospect the last three seasons"

Keith Law: "Will write up later, but as you'd expect I love the Capps deal for the Nationals."

Rotoworld: "What in the world did Twin GM Bill Smith just do? Ramos has struggled at the Triple-A level this season and has no future with the Joe Mauer-led Twins, but to deal a top catching prospect for a middle relief rental seems misguided."

I'm sure somewhere, there's a professional baseball person outside of the Twins front office that likes this deal for them, I just haven't seen it yet.

Posted by: CharlieF | July 30, 2010 11:07 AM | Report abuse

@JBarghini,

First off, Matt Capps is not signed through 2011. His contract expires this year so the Twins essentially traded a good prospect for a rental. Capps is going to command a hefty raise after his performance this year so if the Twins want to keep him they will have to pony up. I do believe the trade is worthwhile for the Twins because Ramos' path is blocked by Joe Mauer anyway but it is an excellent trade for the Nationals because Capps wasn't going to be here next year anyway. The only way this trade can be a win for the Twins is if they catch the Sox. If they don't it will be a huge failure.

Posted by: ouvan59 | July 30, 2010 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Once they get rid of Willingham and Dunn for more "prospects", then Lerner should change the team's name to the Washington Prospects, or the Rookies, because that's all they're going to have in the team with Zimmerman as their "veteran". Stop chasing mirages and lets get some proven ballplayers on this team. I know its good to build for the future but you build around your veterans and established players. With no one filling out this description..Whatare they going to build around of? Good thing I decided not to renew my season tickets. Should go see the Potomac Nationals, the quality is about the same as their MLB team and cheaper to watch too.

Posted by: jtorres007@yahoo.com | July 30, 2010 11:22 AM | Report abuse

@dougw3
I am getting tired of all the stockpiling of prospects. Its time for some of these guys to step up.

----------------------------------

So you want the young prospects to step up but are mad that the Nats are trading the guys in front of them? This move clears the way for Drew Storen to "step up."

Posted by: ouvan59 | July 30, 2010 11:56 AM | Report abuse

I am tired of hearing fans say that we should stop trading for prospects - It does a disservice to the Nats because it implies that's all they've been doing. Where did Capps, Willingham, Dunn come from? The acid test of whether a trade is good should be if the team overall improves as a result, which only time will tell. Besides, it's unreasonable to expect a team to go out and purchase only proven players when their fan base is still only developing and they don't have deep pockets to go out and be competitive in the big league market place. If fans want the team to spend big bucks, they have to realize that home game seats also have to be filled. It flies in the face of common sense to expect a team to buy big names when the fans aren't yet making that possible. First fill the seats at home games, then you can reasonably expect the team to spend some of it to acquire established players; otherwise, be content with the occasional bargain that you can get (like Dunn).

Posted by: kenkeller48 | July 30, 2010 12:08 PM | Report abuse

I will fill my seat once the team win some games. Oncethe team had Alfonso Soriano in it and a lot of people went to see him play myself included. Now who are we going to see once they get rid of Dunn & Willingham? Bernadina? Yay the Washington Prospects! (Or should I say Rookies or Nobodys?)

Posted by: jtorres007@yahoo.com | July 30, 2010 3:57 PM | Report abuse

I think a smart trade and very shrewd move in getting Capps in the first place. But do not trade Dunn. Other than Strasburg, he is the best thing the Nationals have going.

Posted by: bamboo3 | July 30, 2010 4:01 PM | Report abuse

Its always difficult to give up proven guys like Capps for relatively unknown players like Ramos.
But Capps' salary in arbitration is likely to double. That's IF he were to stay...he could have not been offered arbitration and left for NOTHING(like what happened with Pittsburgh).
Exactly why does a team not in the race need an established closer for the final 2 months of the season? To finish a few games better but still out of the race?
You may well have a productive position player for the next 5-10 years and picked him up for a player whose chances of returning were 50/50 at best.
To me this is a great deal for the Nats and not a great one for the Twins.

Posted by: BigDaddy651 | July 30, 2010 4:42 PM | Report abuse

Its always difficult to give up proven guys like Capps for relatively unknown players like Ramos.
But Capps' salary in arbitration is likely to double. That's IF he were to stay...he could have not been offered arbitration and left for NOTHING(like what happened with Pittsburgh).
Exactly why does a team not in the race need an established closer for the final 2 months of the season? To finish a few games better but still out of the race?
You may well have a productive position player for the next 5-10 years and picked him up for a player whose chances of returning were 50/50 at best.
To me this is a great deal for the Nats and not a great one for the Twins.

Posted by: BigDaddy651 | July 30, 2010 4:43 PM | Report abuse

I think they should have held onto Capps until they have a proven closer...with Capps now gone if Storen is a flop then what??? The old bird in the hand philosophy still applies here...same thing if they get rid of Dunn...who will replace his bat????

Posted by: pentagon40 | July 31, 2010 1:28 AM | Report abuse

Well Adam Kilgore what was the line on Wilson Ramos last night? I could not seem to find it anywhere readily, but Matt Capps on the other hand did just as I supposed he would straight away. He participated in a mop-up job for his new team and notched his 27th save and first in the American League. Manager Gardenhire, AKA Gardy used him at the end of a 32/3 inning stint of bullpen relief. Wow! I can see clearly now how instantly a Matt Capp trade benefits both teams because after baking Oswalt and his Phillies, Washington is soooo goooood they they don't even need a closer.

Posted by: JBarghini | July 31, 2010 3:18 AM | Report abuse

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