Brian Roberts for Gavin Floyd? The Orioles need somebody to slot behind Jeremy Guthrie pretty badly.
Guthrie and Floyd are 29 and 25 respectively. Teamed up with young outfield studs Adam Jones, developing at 23, Nick Markakis, a veteran at 25, and wunderkind catcher Matt Wieters, the O's could have something really nice developing here. Luke Scott, Cesar Izturis and Ryan Freel are useful little pieces. Melvin Mora and Aubrey Huff may still have a few decent seasons left in their bats as well.
If someone can step up and help out Jim Johnson and George Sherill in the bullpen, and Mark Hendrickson and the rest of the scabs from the O's rotation can step it up next season, this team could be a problem for the rest of the division. They aren't going to finish first, second, or probably third, but they could depress wins throughout the division and move the Wild Card out of the East. They also could make it a very long summer for Toronto.
1/6/09 UPDATE: The Orioles, apparently were demanding Gavin Floyd and some change from the White Sox in exchange for Roberts. Not surprisingly, a story surfaced on ESPN.com's rumor mill that the Sox are not moving right now on Roberts and focusing on a youth movement instead. Though I have read some good points about the repeatability of Floyd's success based on his numbers, I still look first at the fact that Floyd is 25-years-old and just went 17-8 with a 3.84 ERA and a (just calculated) 127.10 ERA+. As I mentioned in a previous blog, the average ERA+ is 100. Now that Floyd's a pitcher and a quarter. I'll take three more just like him and fill out my five man rotation any day.
Am I the only one who thinks that Brian Roberts is overrated at this point in his career? He's 31, with just about 2-4 more peak seasons. He hit .296 this year with a .378 OBP, both of which are very solid numbers. But his homer total dipped to nine in comfy Camden Yards this year and he only knocked in 57 runs. Granted, he stole a ridiculous 40 out of 50 bases, but his speed should start to decrease any season now. Don't get me wrong, he is a top second baseman, but he seems to me to be the wrong kind of player to hold past his peak, as he relies so heavily on his speed. I think I should maybe tell that to Rickey Henderson. But Floyd is still three years from reaching his peak.
By the way, for all of you wanna be statisticians not reading this blog, you can calculate ERA+ by multiplying the league average ERA times the park factor times 100. You then divide that total by the pitchers ERA and you have your score.
This year's averages were 4.29 in the NL and 4.35 in the AL. The park factors can be found here. And Floyd's ERA for the year was, again, 3.84. Do the math yourself!