…is going to be 28 in August.
…has a career ERA+ of 105, though most of his best work has come out of the bullpen.
…like most pitchers, has a much better strikeout rate as a reliever than a starter. For Correia, it’s the difference between an average and above-average strikeout rate.
…is already in his arbitration years. He’s only making a little over $1M this season, but he’ll probably be in line to make somewhere between $5M and $8M combined over the next two seasons.
…has Cory Bailey as one of his Baseball Reference comparables. Cory Bailey! I totally forgot about that guy. Bailey was supposed to be John Johnstone before John Johnstone was John Johnstone, but then he wasn’t. But I digress....
Last night was within the range of expected Correia starts. He pitched good, but not great, and got through six innings. You could say that Correia is the very model of a modern average innings-eater (of repertoire slider, change, and hittable-yet-decent heater). He has value to a team when he’s healthy, but he’ll never make the All-Star team. If he’s your ace, you’re in trouble. If he’s your fifth starter, you’re doing quite well for yourself. In cereal terms, Correia is a bowl of Corn Flakes. Tim Lincecum is a bowl of magic Cap'n Crunch that doesn't cut the roof of your mouth all to hell, but I digress....
Correia will never bring back fair value in a trade. Another organization wouldn’t give up a decent and young position player, especially one who is ready to start, for Correia. But if the Giants don’t get a player back who fits that description, why would it be worthwhile to trade Correia at all? He has more value to the Giants than would a utility player or questionable prospect. Not that the Giants should be looking to trade Correia right now, of course. This is all theoryland stuff.
My crazy idea, then: What about a three- or four-year extension for Correia? Buy out his arbitration years, and give him some instant security. A three-year deal shouldn’t cost more than $10M total, and perhaps the Giants could include a fourth-year option. Consider it overpriced mediocrity insurance. The premiums might cost a bit more than the team had planned for, but it could prevent a Carlos Silva-type deal in the future. If Correia never throws another pitch, the contract wouldn’t make a huge difference against future roster building efforts, but if he pitches at a league-average level, he’ll be very cost efficient.
Just a thought. He's a handy guy to have around, but maybe it's a little silly to talk extension with a pitcher who has thrown all of 50 innings after returning from injury.