Evaluating A Potential Kevin Slowey and Wilson Ramos for Cliff Lee Trade


Last night on Baseball Tonight Buster Olney stated that there is reportedly an offer of Kevin Slowey and Wilson Ramos for Cliff Lee. I can certainly see why the Mariners want Slowey: His biggest detriment is fly balls and the resulting homers, and the one thing Safeco does is kill fly balls (on right handed hitters). Not to mention I’m sure he would pitch much better with Franklin Gutierrez in center rather than Denard Span.

But does it make sense for Twins fans?

I have already looked at Cliff Lee’s trade value, so with that behind us let’s look at Slowey’s: (of course these come from Sky over at BtB. I have it in the Cliff Lee link but forgot to put it here. My bad)

Quick explanation of how I arrived at this: Slowey is due about another 280 grand this season, but the closest I could round to on the sheet was one decimal point, so tough noogies. Then his arb years should be pretty self-explanatory. As for his WAR values, Slowey has been worth 5.7 wins in 400 career innings, and estimating around 80 innings for him in the 2nd half you get just under 1.3 wins, which was bumped up due to rounding and pitching in Safeco. Then I estimated his innings for the next three years, and projected him to improve slightly. It is entirely possible (and probable)  he will improve more than that, I just don’t want to be a homer, plus there are legitimate injury concerns which keep his projections down.

So we have:

Kevin Slowey = 19.0 million

Cliff Lee = 17.1 million

So already Kevin Slowey is worth more than Cliff Lee. Now, I should stress that this is without factoring in the fact that with Cliff Lee the Twins have a much better chance at winning the 2010 World Series, which is obviously the goal of such a trade. But when you factor in that Wilson Ramos is worth at worst 12.5 million (as a top 100 hitting prospect) this looks like quite the overpay.

Still, if the Twins win the World Series, it will all be worth it. Flags fly forever.