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Lowry: Part MLXVII

If the Giants are trying to find a trade partner for Noah Lowry....

  1. Payroll should be a constant concern for the acquiring team. A lot of Lowry's value is tied to the idea that he'll be underpaid by about $30M over the life of his contract. The Yankees wouldn't need to give up a good young player for Lowry if they can just throw $50M at the league average starter of the week.
  2. The acquiring team would probably already have the lineup of a contender, but their starting pitching would be suspect-to-terrible at the back end. If a team has a solid one through four, it wouldn't make much sense for them to dole out a bunch for Lowry. And the Giants should only be in the market for "a bunch."
  3. The GM of the acquiring team isn't likely to be a stat-driven evaluator. Lowry's declining K/BB rates scare me, but I still hold out hope that he'll rediscover his strikeout pitch. Maybe that's because I'm ignorant. If I knew how to tickle a statistical database a little bit, maybe I wouldn't hold out hope. A stat-based evaluator might hold out a little hope -- perhaps they'd see Lowry as a good "value" buy -- but they certainly wouldn't give up prized young players.
  4. The acquiring team would have something the Giants want. No A-ball pitching, no potential fourth outfielders -- corner infielder, catcher, or shortstop would seem to be the only positions that would work, and the players would need to be pretty solid. On that note, the other team would have to be willing to give up said player. The Giants would love Ryan Howard, for example.
  5. Teams with little shot at immediate contention probably wouldn't want to trade young players for a veteran with three years left on his deal. It could happen, but it probably isn't likely.
Them's the ground rules as I see it. Here are the 29 other teams in MLB. The number next to the team is the above qualification that would suggest the team is not especially interested in Lowry. A "soft 2" means that I might be giving too much credit to the team's current rotation, or at least that organization's internal perception of their own rotation:
Angels (1, 2)
Astros (4)
A's (3, 5)
Blue Jays (3)
Braves (soft 2)
Brewers (2)
Cardinals (4, 5)
Cubs (2)
Diamondbacks (2, 3)
Dodgers (1, 2)
Indians (soft 2, 3)
Mariners (soft 2)
Marlins (5)
Mets (1, 4)
Nationals (4, 5)
Orioles (4, 5)
Padres (2, 3, 4)
Phillies (soft 2, 4)
Pirates (soft 2, 5)
Rangers (5)
Rays (soft 2)
Red Sox (1, 2, 3)
Reds (...?...)
Rockies (soft 2)
Royals (5)
Tigers (2)
Twins (soft 2)
White Sox (5)
Yankees (1, 2)
A couple of things become apparent with a list like this: First, it's easy to see why Brian Sabean has been underwhelmed with the offers for Lowry. Second, it's easy to see why we're inundated with mock trade proposals involving the Reds. They're the perfect storm of Lowry need, though they might want a strikeout/groundball pitcher to play in that park. If the Reds don't really have much interest in Lowry, the Giants are probably better off keeping him.

Unless the Mariners decide they simply must have another starter, that is. Ohpleaseohpleaseohplease. If there's another GM would could out-Sabean Sabean, it's Bill Bavasi.

Next in the series: Lowry's favorite restaurants across the country. Could they make a difference?