- Yusmeiro Petit at least has the chance to be good someday, making Arizona the clear winner of the Jorge Julio trade. That said, his low groundball rate and high homer rate limits any possible short-term optimism.
- Doug Davis simply isn't the same pitcher he was in 2005. The K-rate isn't going to come back, and his ERA, particularly in that park, should rise.
- Will Jose Valverde carry any baggage from his "walk-off walk" in the playoffs against the Rockies? Even without that, it's not that likely that he'll be as valuable as he was in 2007. The Diamondbacks provided a ton of save situations with all the close games that they played. While he's a legit closer with a fantastic strikeout rate, his walk rate, HR rate and lack of stamina are all legitimate concerns.
- Do you want to get me to spend money early in an auction? Bring up Chad Billingsley. Whether by accident or design, the Dodgers used the "Earl Weaver" manner of developing him by sticking him in the bullpen to start the season before moving him back into the rotation, with awesome results. Young stud pitchers tend to get overvalued (wait until you see the results of the Mock Auction that we had for the magazine), apparently not just by me, but this is one I'm comfortable overpaying for.
- Derek Lowe's three seasons in Los Angeles have been remarkably (with apologies to Ken Tremendous for using this term) consistent, at least in terms of ERA/WHIP/BB-rate. The contract that former GM Paul DePodesta signed him to doesn't look too bad in light of the current market.
- Were the Giants seriously contemplating trading Tim Lincecum for Alex(is) Rios prior to signing Rowand? Isn't that borderline insane? Rios has been fine the last two seasons, and sure, they need offense, but Lincecum screams potential ace for the next 10 years (the next two of which will be insanely cheap, and the following three reasonable as well). I can't see that working out well for them.
- Noah Lowry's K:BB really deteriorated last year, yet he lowered his ERA from 4.74 to 3.92 - how did he do it? Mostly by inducing more groundballs and fewer homers, with a little help from the bullpen as well. He might have been a good decline candidate anyhow, following the bone spurs in his elbow that ended his season. But from a statistical point-of-view, he's certainly not a good bet to repeat his sub-4.00 ERA.
- Nominally there's a job battle for the closer's job in San Francisco, but Tyler Walker really isn't an alternative. Count on Brian Wilson winning that battle fairly easily.