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Hypothetical: Would you have traded Joe Mauer for Fielder or Kinsler?

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#1 Alex

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 01:23 PM

If Mauer would have been willing to waive his no trade clause, would you have traded him for Kinsler of Fielder?

With such an odd trade that involves so much money, and with Mauer moving to first base I think it's an interesting question that puts Mauer's value and contract into perspective, especially for those that are so critical of him.

My answer would be no for both. Even as a 1B, where so many argue his bat isn't as strong relatively and his contract loses value, I still would not have wanted Kinsler or Fielder for him, even if Fielder returns to previous form for a year or two and Kinsler plays a harder position to fill. Mauer's still going to provide more value than either one I think, over the course of the rest of his contract.

What would you have done?

#2 ashburyjohn

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 01:31 PM

Wow, great question. Given how the team isn't currently making much use of the salary "space" they already have, I can't see trading for a lower salary (Kinsler) except if it were a starting pitcher of great talent. And while defense isn't the first attribute you look for in a first baseman I dislike Fielder's game enough to not want to make that trade either.

#3 Willihammer

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 01:39 PM

I'd think about Fielder. He's the anti-Mauer in terms of durability and obviously has greater power potential.

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 01:42 PM

I'd have to consider Fielder. Not sure, but its at least interesting.

#5 notoriousgod71

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 01:45 PM

Yes to Fielder, no to Kinsler.

#6 SpiritofVodkaDave

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 01:45 PM

God no. Prince and Kinsler are both declining, Prince is going to only get worse as his body won't hold up. Mauer doesn't have the durability (yet) Prince does, but at least he is an average base runner and provides defensive value.

#7 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 01:54 PM

No and no. Kinsler isn't good enough and I've never liked Fielder... His dad imploded at what, age 33? I think it's very possible that Prince follows the family mold.

#8 halfchest

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 01:55 PM

I agree with the above, great question. I hadn't even considered it. I'm a Joe apologist though, I like the hometown angle all that sappy stuff. However, you'd have to give it thought when it comes to Fielder. Do they still include the 30 million for Fielder? Because that would make a bit of a difference too. Or because they're getting paid about the same is it a straight up 1 for 1 no money deal? I can't justify Kinsler though, especially with Dozier looking pretty good last year and some decent prospects getting close.

How about Andrus for Mauer? Assuming the Rangers didn't just do the Kinsler deal though? I would be curious if he came up in conversation between the two teams at all. I would have to think long and hard on that one. You lose a lot of offense there but then you've got a stud young SS for the next decade.

#9 Thrylos

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 01:57 PM

Short answer: No way.
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#10 70charger

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 01:58 PM

I don't think I'd go for either one either. I think Prince Fielder is going to remain good for awhile, but his prodigious weight combined with his prodigious contract are more thank likely going to make his decline phase an absolute dumpster fire. I think Mauer will age gracefully.

#11 nicksaviking

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 02:00 PM

Detroit did kick in $30 million for Fielder, that brings his annual salary down to less than $20 million. That's less than Mauer. But while I'd like Fielder over the next couple of years, I think he's playing on borrowed time with that body, I don't think he's productive at all in a few years.

#12 Siehbiscuit

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 02:11 PM

Not trying to be a jerk, but what other than Fielder being fat gives ANYONE any thought that his body wont hold up? He is currently the leagues "ironman" and he plays first base and DH's! Even if he gets bigger (is it possible?) he can become a full-time DH. Why is he going to breakdown again? Evidence to this?

#13 Monkeypaws

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 02:25 PM

Not trying to be a jerk, but what other than Fielder being fat gives ANYONE any thought that his body wont hold up? He is currently the leagues "ironman" and he plays first base and DH's! Even if he gets bigger (is it possible?) he can become a full-time DH. Why is he going to breakdown again? Evidence to this?


His home runs and ops have declined two seasons in a row, 38, 30, 25, and .981, .940, and .819. He is well-protected in a stacked line-up, yet his walks have also dropped over the same period. He turns 30 in May. This may add up a trend, maybe not.

However, you'd have to ask if those numbers are worth that money, even more than with Mauer.

Edited by Monkeypaws, 21 November 2013 - 02:29 PM.


#14 spycake

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 02:27 PM

Fielder is worth a thought, especially if the Tigers kicked in cash -- so far his decline is mainly just one season, and the Twins DH spot is perpetually open.

But given his contract runs even longer than Mauer's, the answer is pretty clear. (And that's without getting into questions of marketing, where Mauer obviously has more value to this club.)

#15 spycake

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 02:41 PM

His home runs and ops have declined two seasons in a row, 38, 30, 25, and .981, .940, and .819.


The first of those seasons is barely a decline, certainly well within normal variation. He was switching teams/parks/leagues too.

Last year is definitely a big dip -- worse year since his rookie season. I wouldn't want to take a chance on him until that was cleared up... of course, if he starts hitting better, his team wouldn't want to trade him. :)

#16 Alex

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 02:50 PM

Great to see the responses so far and it's pretty interesting and maybe even surprising to me that there's only been one "definite" for Fielder and few other that would consider it at best.

I'd have thought that with the way people sometimes talk about Mauer, they'd be jumping at the chance for a bona-fide power hitting 1B like Fielder over him, especially if they're both playing 1B and their contracts are pretty much the same at this point.

Maybe that will change as the day goes on, but it's been interesting to read so far.

#17 Shane Wahl

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 02:51 PM

Absolutely not to both. Kinsler would clearly be a mistake and Fielder would be a mistake. There.

Seriously?

#18 Alex

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 02:52 PM

Fielder is worth a thought, especially if the Tigers kicked in cash -- so far his decline is mainly just one season, and the Twins DH spot is perpetually open.

But given his contract runs even longer than Mauer's, the answer is pretty clear. (And that's without getting into questions of marketing, where Mauer obviously has more value to this club.)


Fielder's contract takes him through age 36 and Mauer's through age 35. Assume Detroit pays the money and they're basically the same.

That said, I still have concerns about Fielder's potential for decline where I think you might see Mauer actually get better for a season or two.

#19 Shane Wahl

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 02:53 PM

You have to get to true upper-echelon players to consider a trade for Mauer straight up.

#20 bholmgren

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 02:55 PM

Not a chance with Kinsler. Possibly with Fielder, but only if there's cash kicked in by DET.

#21 James

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 03:00 PM

Great question.

Fielder's production has been trending the wrong way. It may not look that way next year when he's hitting home runs all over the place in June in Texas. But, even with that, I'm betting that his best years are behind him.

Kinsler is an absolute no.

You can come up with statistics to prove anything. Forty percent of all people know that.


#22 Alex

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 03:03 PM

You have to get to true upper-echelon players to consider a trade for Mauer straight up.


I'm glad someone else appreciates Mauer as much as I do, but Fielder didn't get $30M a year because he was a second tier talent. I'm not saying I'd trade Mauer for these guys either, but I'd be interested to get a couple of names of players that you'd consider.

Still, it was part of my point with the question is that, especially in Fielder's case, trading Mauer for one of the most durable power hitting 1B in the league isn't a no-brainer.

#23 Thrylos

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 03:25 PM

Not trying to be a jerk, but what other than Fielder being fat gives ANYONE any thought that his body wont hold up? He is currently the leagues "ironman" and he plays first base and DH's! Even if he gets bigger (is it possible?) he can become a full-time DH. Why is he going to breakdown again? Evidence to this?


Evidence? No, because it is speculation and risk management. Just a red flag that gets much bigger if you look at the fact that his dad broke down after his age 32 season.
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#24 spycake

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 04:07 PM

Fielder's contract takes him through age 36 and Mauer's through age 35. Assume Detroit pays the money and they're basically the same.

That said, I still have concerns about Fielder's potential for decline where I think you might see Mauer actually get better for a season or two.


I just meant Fielder is signed thru 2020, Mauer 2018.

If they were both FA, I'd probably like Mauer for 5 years more than Fielder for 7.

#25 Jim Crikket

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 04:14 PM

Joe Posnanski has a post where he looks at the "10 worst" contracts right now and Mauer's is one of them. Can't argue, but I didn't see any other contract on the list that I'd swap Mauer for straight up. If you're going to have a "bad contract," I'd keep Mauer and see if a less demanding defensive position means more offensive output and better durability, as opposed to guys like Kinsler or Fielder. I just don't see factors that would indicate either of them will do anything but fade at least a little every year at this point. On top of which, having just one of those other "superstars" wouldn't really improve the competitiveness of the Twins any more than just having Mauer does.

But the discussion gets different if you start looking at pitchers getting $20MM+/yr. A trade of Mauer for Verlander? He's 30 yrs old and signed through 2019, as I recall. Maybe you would or maybe you wouldn't, but I wouldn't dismiss it out of hand the way I would Fielder and Kinsler.
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#26 mike wants wins

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 04:16 PM

No. But there are probably others I'd trade him for.....but neither of those two.
Lighten up Francis....

#27 Shane Wahl

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 04:30 PM

I'm glad someone else appreciates Mauer as much as I do, but Fielder didn't get $30M a year because he was a second tier talent. I'm not saying I'd trade Mauer for these guys either, but I'd be interested to get a couple of names of players that you'd consider.

Still, it was part of my point with the question is that, especially in Fielder's case, trading Mauer for one of the most durable power hitting 1B in the league isn't a no-brainer.


Mike Trout
Miguel Cabrera
Bryce Harper
Evan Longoria
Wil Myers

Clayton Kershaw
David Price
Max Scherzer
etc.

Not a whole bunch of guys, but certainly not falling to Fielder levels.

#28 Alex

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 05:11 PM

Joe Posnanski has a post where he looks at the "10 worst" contracts right now and Mauer's is one of them. Can't argue, but I didn't see any other contract on the list that I'd swap Mauer for straight up. If you're going to have a "bad contract," I'd keep Mauer and see if a less demanding defensive position means more offensive output and better durability, a


I couldn't find a recent article on this. I saw just the one after the 2011 season and while he mentions Mauer, Mauer wasn't actually in the top 10. It's odd, too considering that he's actually been MORE productive since then.

#29 Monkeypaws

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 06:06 PM

At 1st, Mauer has a chance to age gracefully as a previous poster mentioned. Paul Molitor might be an apt potential comparison.

#30 snepp

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 06:24 PM

No and hells no.