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DRaysBay 2014-2015 Offseason Simulation Day 4

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This might be the big one...

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The final day of the odd-season simulation concluded at 1:00 EST, and GM Hatfield decided to go all out. Particularly because Bryan Grosnick's Red Sox decided to go even crazier, including the following monster:

Marlins trade OF Giancarlo Stanton and 1B Mark Canha to the Red Sox for C Christian Vazquez, SP Henry Owens, SP Rubby de la Rosa, SP Allen Webster, 3B Garin Cecchini, OF Bryce Brentz, OF Daniel Nava, and OF Nick Longhi

Boils the blood, doesn't it? Let's get busy:

Move No. 8

Rays sign P Kwan-Hyun Kim to a 6 year $29 million deal, including two club options in 2019 and 2020

Anticipating some action involving the starting rotation, which we shall get to in a moment, the Rays struck the Korean market for the top pitcher of that league, Kwan-Hyun Kim.

Here's MLBTR's write up from yesterday:

The 26-year-old Kim is considered the country's ace, wrote C.J. Nitkowski for Just A Bit Outside.  However, Nitkowski feels Kim might be best-suited bullpen work in MLB.  In a new article, Nitkowski writes that he expects intense conversations between Kim and SK, with the pitcher pushing hard to be let go.

Kim pitched to a 3.33 ERA with 7.5 K/9 and 4.3 BB/9 in 167 2/3 innings this season in the notoriously hitter-friendly environment that is the Korea Baseball Organization. Though he's struggled with health in recent years, Kim has a lifetime 3.28 ERA in more than 1000 innings in KBO.

[...]

The Yonhap News Agency has a full English report on Kim's posting, noting that he features a fastball which sits around 93 mph and a sharp slider. However, Kim relies primarily on those two pitches and would like to develop a more effective changeup if he jumps to the Majors. Kim thanked the Wyverns for the opportunity and issued the following statement:

The Fake Rays intend on using Kim as a starter, at least until Matt Moore returns from Tommy John surgery, and then plan to use him in a long relief role mid-season. Develop the change up he shall.

Now on to the big one... deep breath!

Move No. 9

Three way deal!

Diamondbacks Get
3B Kris Bryant (CHC)
P Pierce Johnson (CHC)
P Dallas Beeler (CHC)

Rays Get
1B Paul Goldschmidt (AZ)
P Eric Jokisch (CHC)
P Justin Grimm (CHC)

Cubs Get
P Grant Balfour (TB)
P Chris Archer  (TB)
P Archie Bradley (AZ)
P Enny Romero (TB)
P Braden Shipley (AZ)
2B Ryan Brett (TB)
OF Justin Williams (AZ)
P Ryne Stanek (TB)
P Blake Snell (TB)
3B Richie Shaffer (TB)

Specifically, here's the Rays portion of the deal.

Cubs trade 1B Paul Goldschmidt, P Eric Jokisch, P Justin Grimm to the Rays for P Chris Archer, P Enny Romero, P Ryne Stanek, 2B Ryan Brett, P Blake Snell, 3B Richie Shaffer, and P Grant Balfour

This was a huge haul of Rays prospects for Chicago, including the three top ranked starting southpaws in the Rays system, in a deal that took the entire length of the simulation to work out, and the Rays walking away from the table three times, and GM Hatfield refusing to talk to the Cubs, leaving VP D-Russ to take on the mess. We think the work paid off. Why?

Paul Freaking Goldschmidt.

That's an MVP candidate on a $3M salary that peaks at $11M in the final year of the deal, 2018. The cost was great, and specifically the loss of Ryan Brett and Blake Snell from the system nearly made D-Russ cry, but off loading Grant Balfour and remembering we're talking about Paul Freaking Goldschmidt helped steady the course. That 155+ wRC+ and .400+ wOBA would sure look nice in Columbia Blue every other Sunday.

If you're worried about what this does to the pitching depth, Archer is immediately replaced in the rotation by Grimm, and Romero is replaced on the depth chart by Eric Jokisch. Don't worry about the rest, as those missing southpaws will be replaced in a subsequent trade DJ D-Russ had spinning on the back burner.

Move No. 10

Royals trade P Louis Coleman, P Sam Selman, and P John Lamb to the Rays for IF Sean Rodriguez and $1.4 million

For once the Rays are spending money in a trade. It's a brave new world under GM Hatfield.

Sam Selman and John Lamb are two southpaw starters in the Royals' top twenty prospects, the Rays drop $2M in salary by forgoing the last year on S-Rod's contract (you and your fine self will be missed), while the Coleman and cash was what the Royals needed to grease the wheels.

Selman is a former Vanderbilt arm with a slick slider, paired with a major league fastball but slipping control as he climbs the minors (now at AAA). Uniquely, he bats right and throws left. Lamb has health concerns, but also steps in at AAA with some serviceable pitches in his fastball, curve, and change.

Louis Coleman is a year removed from rocking a 0.61 ERA and 2.04 FIP, and needs some salvaging from a rough 2014. Jim Hickey is up to the task.

Move No. 11

Rays trade P Brandon Gomes and OF Brandon Guyer to the Yankees for P Preston Claiborne and OF/1B Ramon Flores

To round out the Rays transactions, some bench clearing was in order. Gomes and Guyer were both out of options, but drew strong enough interest from the Yanks to strike a deal.

Claiborne has himself one hell of a change that fell apart last season, so he will be sent down to Durham to develop it back into what it once was. Flores is a guy who played well in his step up to AAA last season, reaching a .352 wOBA and 116 wRC+ at a level when he was among the youngest in his league (only 22).

Minor League Deals

Rays sign OF Ryan Ludwick to a minor league contract

Funny enough, Matt Joyce was traded to Cincinnati to make up for the loss of Ludwick from their line up. Completes the trade in heart by bringing him to Tampa Bay's system.

Minor league offers sent out to Japanese SS Hiroyuji Nakajima, and DH Raul Ibanez -- to join Durham as a player/coach! -- were not answered before the simulation ended.

***

Full List of Transactions

We will have a write up on the week's transactions tomorrow, but for now here's a full list of the moves made by the Fake Rays, GM Hatfield, and VP D-Russ.

  • Rays trade P Jeremy Hellickson and OF Mikie Mathook to the Pirates for OF JaCoby Jones, OF Andrew Lambo and P Jared Hughes
  • Rays exercise the option on IF Ben Zobrist
  • Rays decline the option on P Joel Peralta, making him a free agent
  • Rays trade IF Ben Zobrist and P Taylor Guerreri to the Cubs for OF Albert Almora and 1B Dan Vogelbach
  • Rays trade OF Matt Joyce to the Reds for P Ben Lively and P Ismael Guillon
  • Rays trade 1B James Loney, P Alex Colome, P Steven Geltz, IF Tim Beckham to the Brewers for IF Orlando Arcia, OF Victor Roache, and P David Goforth
  • Rays sign OF Michael Cuddyer to a 2 year $22 million contract
  • Padres trade OF/1B Yonder Alonso to the Rays for OF Kes Carter
  • Rays sign P Rafael Soriano to a 2 year $20 million contract
  • Rays sign P Kwan-Hyun Kim to a 6 year $29 million deal, including two club options
  • Rays sign OF Ryan Ludwick to a minor league contract
  • Cubs trade 1B Paul Goldschmidt, P Eric Jokisch, P Justin Grimm to the Rays for P Chris Archer, P Enny Romero, P Ryne Stanek, 2B Ryan Brett, P Blake Snell, 3B Richie Shaffer, and P Grant Balfour
  • Royals trade P Louis Coleman, P Sam Selman, and P John Lamb to the Rays for IF Sean Rodriguez and $1.4 million
  • Rays trade P Brandon Gomes and OF Brandon Guyer to the Yankees for P Preston Claiborne and OF Ramon Flores

Attempts to trade Jose Molina at the deadline went unliked.

Major League Roster

Player Salary Player Salary
C1 Ryan Hanigan $3,500,000 SP Alex Cobb $4,500,000
1B Paul Goldschmidt $3,100,000 SP Drew Smyly $3,000,000
2B Nick Franklin $550,000 SP Jake Odorizzi $550,000
SS Yunel Escobar $5,000,000 SP Justin Grimm $550,000
3B Evan Longoria $11,000,000 SP Kwan-Hyun Kim $4,833,333
LF Wil Myers $550,000 DL Matt Moore $3,100,000
CF Desmond Jennings $3,200,000
RF Kevin Kiermaier $550,000 RP Rafael Soriano $10,000,000
DH Michael Cuddyer $11,000,000 RP Jake McGee $3,800,000
RP Brad Boxberger $550,000
C2 Jose Molina $2,750,000 RP Jared Hughes $1,100,000
IF Logan Forsythe $1,200,000 RP Louis Coleman $700,000
IF Yonder Alonso $1,600,000 RP Jeff Beliveau $550,000
OF David DeJesus $5,125,000 RP Cesar Ramos $1,300,000

Total Salary: $83,658,333

The Rays salary to spend was $84M, and GM Hatfield brought us as close as he could push it. For the purposes of this exercise, the full deal to Kim wasn't backloaded as was intended, but when you also consider the Rays gave out $1.4M in cash, it evens out.

We'll have a full write up of the roster transformation tomorrow, including a new ranking of top prospects for the Fake Rays!