Tag: Trade Deadline

Fallout from DeMarcus Cousins All-Star night trade

By: Bill Tewes

All-Star night was primarily dominated by the likes of Anthony Davis, LeBron James, Giannis Antetokounmpo and Isaiah Thomas. What no one expected, was to learn of a trade between the Sacramento Kings and the host town’s New Orleans Pelicans, which had the Kings send superstar center DeMarcus Cousins and forward Omri Casspi to the Pelicans for rookie guards Buddy Hield, Tyreke Evans and a 2017 1st and 2nd, the deal first reported by Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical.

This monster blockbuster deal sent ripples throughout the NBA. Many think of this trade as highway robbery, with the Kings being heavily taken advantage of. Some see this as a good move for Sacramento, as they can now freely enter a true rebuild without the distraction that Cousins has brought to the team. What are the implications of this trade for both teams?

Cousins and his Designated Player Max Deal

The Sacramento Kings would have had to commit to a designated player max deal of $209 million over five years. It would be a massive risk that both sides seemingly were interested in, even though Cousins has clashed with the organization since he was drafted 5th overall in 2010. According to ESPN senior writer Brian Windhorst, the Kings had this option via the new CBA agreement, because the dedicated player max is designed so that teams can sign the players they drafted and also so that the player has an extreme incentive to stay with that team.

The Kings are now free of a player who matured into a dominant big, but one who also failed to mature in other aspects of the game. Cousins leads the league in technical fouls with 19. Sacramento is now able to completely tank out this season and build around players such as Hield, Rudy Gay and their slew of young centers.

Pelicans and the scariest front court in all of the NBA

One would be hard pressed to find a front-court that is even remotely close to as good as what now exists in New Orleans. The Pelicans made a huge splash, as they simply could not compete with Golden State by having Anthony Davis surrounded by average guards, or ones that need to mature like rookie Buddy Hield. Cousins and Davis are 4th and 5th respectively in the league in points per game with essentially 28 per game.

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New Orleans will be not be forced to pay the Dedicated Player Max contract that Sacramento would have had to pay Cousins in order to keep him. If they had to, Cousins would become the highest paid player on the Pelicans roster by about $16 million per year over Davis, who already makes $17 million per year. This signing will cost $30 million, according to a report by CBS Sports. Cousins can now only sign for five years $180 million, which still makes him the highest paid player on the Pelicans.

New Orleans has no guarantee that Cousins will even stay with them, as he can hit the open market and become the highest paid player in the NBA after the 2018 season. It would be a massive blow for New Orleans to only get a season and a half rental out of Cousins if he indeed decides to test free agency and walk away from New Orleans, considering the assets they gave up in order to get Cousins.

The final verdict

Rumors have swirled for quite some time regarding a Cousins trade with multiple teams. Phoenix was rumored to be involved as well as in state rival Los Angeles. No one knows for sure how substantial these trade talks were and on the surface it looks as if Sacramento gave up Cousins for an oft-injured Tyreke Evans, an unknown in Buddy Hield and a 1st round pick that will be coming from a playoff team. The truth of the matter is that Sacramento just could not see the long term benefit of committing to Cousins, who has been with them for six seasons and the Kings have yet to make the playoffs. While definitely not on Cousins, the Kings have a lot of work to do before they can become a real contender and an organic rebuild is what they truly need.

For the Pelicans, they create a ridiculous mismatch that teams will have a terrible time defending. Can they put sub par players around Davis and Cousins and hope that these two superstars cover for the rest of the team? Will Cousins stay and form a dynamic duo with Davis that will haunt the Western Conference for years to come? The risk is certainly high, but may prove to be worth it for New Orleans in the long run.
Winner: New Orleans 

Lucroy expresses no trade clause and kills deal to Cleveland, where will he end up?

By: Bill Tewes

UPDATE: According to MLBTraderumors.com, the Rangers are back in the mix for Jonathan Lucroy. The talks are “productive” and we may see Lucroy dealt today after all. Texas is not one of the eight teams that Lucroy can veto a trade to, so we’ll see if Stearns and company get a deal done!

Deadline day is upon us and it was only a matter of when we see Jonathan Lucroy in a jersey other than Milwaukee Brewer blue. Brewer fans were expected to wake up this morning and read the headline: “Jonathan Lucroy traded to Cleveland Indians for package of prospects.” Not so fast Brewer fans! As it usually is, MLB Trade Deadline day has many twists and turns. Lucroy has nixed a deal sending him to the Cleveland Indians due to the fact that Cleveland is one of the eight teams listed on his limited no-trade-clause. ESPN’s Buster Olney tweeted suggesting that the Brewers are working feverishly to convince Lucroy to waive his no-trade-clause and accept a deal to Cleveland. 

Additionally, it appears that the major stumbling block in this trade as reported by Jeff Passan, is that Lucroy was expecting the Indians to do away with the 2017 Club option as part of his contract. The Indians would have been foolish for doing so as they would surely lose Lucroy to free agency after this season. Brewer fans should be rightfully upset with Lucroy if he seriously expected the Indians to do that (after he complained about not being on a contender), but it is also the ugly side for the organization of the no-trade-clause.

The 30-year-old catcher fetched a substantial offer from the Cleveland Indians, which was expected to yield four prospects with catcher Francisco Mejia (#6 prospect in Indian’s organization) being the top prospect of the trade. The Brewers and Indians had a deal in principle and now that deal is for naught.

In a tweet from MLB.com writer Ken Rosenthal, the Brewers were expected to get Indians’ prospects Yu-Cheng Chang (#12) and outfielder Greg Allen (#22) plus a fourth player yet to be named. The Brewers were allegedly heavily interested in Justus Sheffield, but the Indians just traded him to the Yankees as part of a deal to get reliever Andrew Miller. It would have been an incredible trade for the Brewers if they could have received Sheffield as part of the Lucroy package.

Jonathan Lucroy was very vocal about wanting to play for a contender in the offseason and Cleveland has been making moves to solidify them as a top flight contender this year. For everything Lucroy has said, it is hard to believe that he would outright deny a trade to a team that looks like a serious threat in the AL.

The Brewers had multiple trade partners for Lucroy and it seemed as if the cost would rise for his services. Now the Brewers have to go back to the drawing board and hope that they can get as good of a deal or possibly slightly better now that the Indians are out. The Mets offered what I think is a lowball offer for Lucroy. They offered catcher Travis D-Arnaud and outfielder Brandon Nimmo (#5 prospect in their system) plus a player yet to be named. The other substantial trade partner was the Texas Rangers, but they fell out of the running early yesterday as it appears they do not want to part with a top prospect like Jurickson Profar or Joey Gallo.

It would behoove the Brewers to take their time today and wait this trade deadline out as long as possible. Brewers GM David Stearns is not going to sell low on Lucroy just because a deal fell through with Cleveland. Lucroy would still have one year left on his contract and can easily be traded in the offseason, so that a team can get a full year of his services behind the plate. In that aspect, it might be better for them to keep Lucroy in Milwaukee for the rest of this season.

The Brewers still have their relievers they could move and it is encouraging to see the haul that the New York Yankees received for reliever Andrew Miller. Milwaukee should be able to move Jeremy Jeffress and Will Smith to contenders or teams on the verge of contending. It also would not surprise me to see Chris Carter moved for a team in serious need of a power bat, but so far there have been no rumors regarding Carter. By the end of the day, the Brewers should net some nice prospects, adding to their continued pursuit of a better future.

All-Star Break Yields Deadline Talk. Brewers Rangers Discussing Lucroy?

By: Bill Tewes

The trade deadline is fast approaching and there is no doubt that Milwaukee Brewers GM David Stearns is going to be a busy man. Coming off a rough series against the rival St. Louis Cardinals, the Brewers are going to be heavily focused on players they can unload at the deadline and hope to get a haul of prospects in return.

Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports wrote an article today suggesting that there may be renewed trade talks between the Texas Rangers and the Milwaukee Brewers regarding Jonathan Lucroy. Rosenthal quoted a scout that was on hand at a Class A Rookie League game and noted that the Brewers had “multiple scouts” in attendance.

The Brewers and Rangers are no strangers to trade discussion regarding Jonathan Lucroy as these teams discussed a potential trade in the offseason. Rosenthal quoted a scout as suggesting: “He surmised that the home team, the Rangers, was involved in multiple trade discussions. And he noted that the Brewers had multiple scouts watching the Texas youngsters — an indication, perhaps, that the Rangers are plotting to acquire Brewers catcher Jonathan Lucroy.”

While Rosenthal notes nothing is concrete, it is peculiar that the Brewers once again are heavily invested in scouting Texas Ranger players. Jonathan Lucroy is also fresh off his second All-Star nomination and that will definitely add value to any trade that the Milwaukee Brewers may entertain as Lucroy struggled last year which definitely hurt his trade value. We have recently touched on what the Brewers may do at the deadline and it is certainly not surprising that the Brewers are beefing up their scouting efforts with less than a month to deadline day.

If the Brewers do end up trading Lucroy, they could easily pair him with numerous other players on the roster. They could end up pairing Junior Guerra, the 31-year-old pitcher who the Brewers called up in May. Guerra has had somewhat of a sensational season since being called up in May and the Brewers could use him to make a similar trade to last years’ deadline deal; which sent Carlos Gomez and Mike Fiers to Houston for a haul of prospects. There are also rumors that scouts are heavily interested in relief pitchers Jeremy Jeffress and Will Smith. The Brewers would be wise to trade both of these players as they are not of any value to a team in the middle of a complete rebuild.

Rosenthal notes that the Brewers might demand a top prospect such as Joey Gallo or Jurickson Profar. But I highly doubt the Rangers are interested in shipping out players that can make an impact in the near future and would instead trade younger prospects who are not nearly as established. Adam J. Morrison of Lone Star Ball suggests that the Rangers would be unlikely to “pay a premium” in trading for a 30-year-old catcher. But Lucroy is not just any 30-year-old player, he is a significant upgrade over any catcher on the Rangers’ roster right now and is signed through next year. According to spotrac.com, Lucroy’s contract ranks 54th overall as far as value is concerned, which is tops for a catcher.

The Brewers have the luxury of waiting on a trade for Lucroy and getting the best possible value. I definitely trust in Stearns to get maximum value for Lucroy and it would be excellent to get him to a contender or a team that can utilize his services for a playoff push. There are multiple teams in desperate need of a catcher and I fully expect Lucroy to be moved by the deadline.

 

           

 

           

Brewers Deadline Discussion: Braun, Lucroy and more

By: Jim Boyce

As we approach the July 31st trade deadline, it is time to examine what David Stearns may or may not do.

The calendar has hit July and with it comes the mayhem known as the MLB trade deadline. Our local nine has at times shown signs of being a competitive baseball team (at home anyway). With Ryan Braun hitting well over .300, Jonathan Lucroy regaining his all-star form of 2014, Chris Carter mashing homers, and players such as Junior Guerra and Jonathan Villar have unexpectedly made the team watchable.

However, the Brewers are not going to finish anywhere near the NL playoffs and will be sellers at the deadline. Trading for prospects and landing in the top 10 of the draft does the Brewers more good than chasing 75 wins, so let’s take a look at some trade chips David Stearns has at his disposal:

RYAN BRAUN & JONATHAN LUCOY

The two obvious names are Ryan Bruan and Jonathan Lucroy. The only rumor of real substance so far was reported by Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports and had Braun headed to San Francisco. There are some major roadblocks to this particular deal and it seems unlikely at this point. Due to his contract, his past, and his no trade clause, moving Braun may be difficult to do. Lucroy seems far more likely to be traded, as his affordable contract and All-Star level production should be able to net the Brewers a nice haul of prospects. Lucroy may be able to fetch the Brewers a top 1st or 3rd baseman or starting pitching.

As a fan it would hurt to see Lucroy go, but sentiment must be put aside during rebuilds. After all most of us loved watching Carlos Gomez play, but the Brewers clearly won the deal that landed them a future starting pitcher, centerfielder, and a current starter in Domingo Santana. If the Brewers can get a similar deal for Lucroy, the future becomes very bright in Milwaukee.

CHRIS CARTER, AARON HILL & MATT GARZA

Last season Chris Carter was bad, no other way to describe a .199 BA. As a result the Brewers were able to sign him on a cheap one year deal. While currently batting .231 and being on pace to strikeout over 200 times is not good, his power has returned as he currently sits at 20 HR as of this writing. I think there is a good chance David Stearns will receive calls from contending teams looking to add a power bat for the pennant race. The Brewers most likely will not receive a top prospect in return, but could get a guy who at least has a chance to blossom into a major league contributor.

Aaron Hill, after a slow start, has rebounded nicely and is currently batting .273 with 7 HR and 25 RBI. Derek Harvey of Brew Crew Ball wrote a nice piece recently likening a Hill trade to that of last seasons Aramis Ramirez deal. The player in return would be unlikely to become an MLB contributor, but as a rebuilding club it’s worth getting as many chips as you can.

Matt Garza is an interesting case. My bet is he will not be moved, as he has spent most of this season on the DL and was beyond awful last season. However he did have a few nice starts after coming back followed by a poor outing in St. Louis. Maybe some team takes a chance? Again I doubt it, but it’s worth keeping an eye on how he performs in July.

EVERYONE ELSE

Beyond the players already mentioned I do not see anyone else being traded. Players like Jonathan Villar and Scooter Gennett have played well, and possibly could be traded to clear space for Orlando Arcia coming up. But they are both young players on affordable team controlled contracts, exactly the kind of players the Brewers are looking to acquire.

My final prediction is that Jonathan Lucroy, Chris Carter, and Aaron Hill are moved either at the deadline or off waivers at the end of August. Ryan Braun and Matt Garza finish out the season in Milwaukee. In the end though, the trade deadline can be a wild time, and no one really knows what Stearns might have up his sleeve.