Yesterday, I posted a piece musing on whether or not Mark Buehrle and/or Chris Carpenter would be come available during the season and whether or not the Yankees should be interested in trading for either one. For the purpose of this post, let’s assume they both are available and the Yankees are interested in trading for both (but would, obviously, only trade for one).
With help from Larry, I ran over to BTBS and looked up the trade value calculator, which is really fun to play with. I used Cot’s to get each player’s salary data, and used CAIRO projections and the WAR spreadsheet to calculate the pertinent WAR data.
The trade calculator asks us to put in salary and WAR data, and we’ll start with Carpenter. In 2011, Carpenter is scheduled to make $15M. He also has an option for 2012 that would pay him $15M as well. For the first iteration of Carpenter’s trade value, I assumed the option would not be picked up, so it’s a one year deal. He’s projected by CAIRO to pitch 175 innings at a 3.69 FIP. Punching those numbers into the calculator gives us exactly $8M of trade value, if we assume Carpenter is a Type-A free agent. If he’s a Type-B, he takes a hit down to only $5.5M of trade value. I’m not an expert, but I’d assume Carpenter will be a Type-A at season’s end.
Of course, that WAR projection and the value associated with it represents a whole season of Carpenter. Let’s assume they trade for him halfway through the year. We’ll cut his innings in half, since that’s (theoretically) what he’d pitch with the Yankees. 87.5 innings of 3.69 FIP gives us 1.9 WAR. We’ll also cut Carpenter’s salary in half to $7.5M. With this projection, we get $6.5M of value if he’s a Type-A.
There is no language I can find on Cot’s that says Carpenter’s option is guaranteed if he’s traded, so I’m not going to factor that in; I doubt the Yankees would pick up his option anyway. So where does this leave us? If the Yankees do, in fact, trade for Carpenter mid-season, that’s $6.5M of value. What exactly does that mean in terms of what the Yankees would have to give up? Let’s go to Minor League Ball to find out. Given the information in that post, we see $6.5M matches up perfectly with “Grade-B” pitchers. If we take a look at John Sickels’ prospect grades for the Yankees, he has Manny Banuelos and Hector Noesi as exactly Grade B pitchers. Dellin Betances came in at B+ while Ivan Nova, David Phelps, Adam Warren, Graham Stoneburner, and Andrew Brackman came in at B-. In theory, basically in the vacuum that is this trade calculator, half a season of Chris Carpenter could be had fairly with a one-for-one trade with one of those players. In reality, though, would any of us want to trade Manny Banuelos, Andrew Brackman, or Dellin Betances for half a season of Chris Carpenter and (maybe) some draft picks? I don’t think so. For what it’s worth, I would definitely listen on Noesi, since his upside is the lowest of the pitchers mentioned above. Of course, that’s just one way we could reach the $6.5 number. The Yankees could get creative and do a package instead of a straight up swap.
The “guide,” so to speak says that Grade B hitters and Grade C pitchers under 22 would add up to $6.8M. The Yankees have Grade B (including B- and B+) hitters in Austin Romine (B-) and Slade Heathcott (B-) and Grade C pitchers under 22 in Jose Ramirez (C+) and Brett Marshall (C+). Again, in our vacuum, the Yankees could pair two of those guys and land Carpenter. This seems like something the Yankees could be more willing to do, since these guys are farther off than the ones mentioned above and don’t have the same upside.
Will Chris Carpenter be available? Who knows? Will the Yankees be in on him? Who knows? This is all very far off, considering we’re still a week away from our first Spring Training game. I just thought it would be worthwhile to run some scenarios through the trade calculator to see what quantities could change hands if a trade does go down. Check back over the weekend (or on Monday depending on how many lessons I write this weekend) and I’ll do one of these for Mark Buehrle and his value.