January 10, 2007

For the love of Gerut!

Lately a lot of people are discussing Jody Gerut, probably due to the PG article talking about his recovery. That is just a wild guess on my part, in reality people have been talking about him since he was acquired for Matt Lawton in 2005.

Most people claim it was another poor move by Dave Littlefield. Some say it is more a standard DL move. I disagree with both. This was actually one of DL's better moves when you look into it deeper.

No, I am not on cold medication again.

Gerut is one of those players the Pirates should look for and target. A young talented player with upside, remember he did win ROY with the Indians. Gerut had the potential to be a perennial all-star. Unfortunately he has been injured almost since day 1.

I like to say DL is afraid to take a chance, this time he did. So far it has not paid any dividends. I can't blame DL for that, at least he attempted something out of character for him. This is why I actually still like the move, DL actually took a chance.

But wait, there is more. You don't honestly think I could go an entire entry praising DL, now, did you?

The apparent chance DL took on Gerut was nothing more than another salary dump. Lawton arrived in an attempt to unload salary from Arthur Rhodes, who was acquired in the Jason Kendall deal. Over the course of 2005 DL was able to cut nearly $10M from payroll with that series of moves. It was nothing more than a glorified A-Ram deal.

Or was it?

At least some talent has stayed with the team from the series of deals spawned by trading Kendall. In 2003 any Pirate fan would have taken Gerut straight up for Kendall and would swear we ripped off the Indians, not so much so in 2005.

At no point would even a complete moron trade A-Ram for Bobby Hill straight up. At least we still have Jose Hernandez to remind us of the trade. I guess we do have talent left over from that deal after all.

The bottom line is every move DL makes needs to be analyzed from top to bottom to see where the cost savings is actually coming from. DL is not a GM, he is a Financial Manager for the Nuttings. Let's just call him a "Flexibility Manager".
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