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PostPosted: September 3 19, 5:04 pm 
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These comments came from a chat with MLB Trade Rumors' Steve Adams that occurred on September 3. (If you like him, you can find him on Twitter @Adams_Steve.)

The link to the entire chat can be found here: https://www.jotcast.com/chat/chat-with- ... -5949.html

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Cole Hamels a fit for the Angels on a 2 year deal? West Coast guy, Angels need some stability, seems to be aging well and he has pitched in the AL West.

Steve Adams
Sure, although if you're saying in addition to Cole (in the aforementioned free agent signing scenario I laid out), that's a lot of AAV to add to the books two guys who'll reject qualifying offers, meaning some pretty significant draft forfeitures.

I expect Hamels to pursue a three-year deal, for what it's worth. But there's no guarantee he gets that; teams have been increasingly wary of that length of deal for someone in Hamels' age range. I think he'll look for three but two at a strong AAV does feel likelier.
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Where do you see the market for Moustakas centralizing? Do you think he gets to 4 years and/or $20m a year?

Steve Adams
He hasn't come anywhere close to that in either of the past two offseasons despite being younger than he'll be this winter. He's been a similar hitter for three straight years now. I can't see him getting much more than $12-13MM per season on a three-year deal -- and that's a best-case outcome. He may land around $20-25MM over two years if the mutual option doesn't happen.

In fact, Moustakas is the first mutual option that's been there in awhile where I wonder if both parties will just pick it up. It's an $11MM option for the Brewers but comes with a $3MM buyout, so they're basically asking themselves if they want Moose on a one-year, $8MM deal. That should be an easy yes.

For Moustakas, who's struggled to find a nice contract in two straight offseasons -- maybe he just takes the option. If I had to guess, I say he declines ... but it's not crazy to think he's just burned out from two straight winters of hearing "nothing yet" for months on end.
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MVP of NL, Freeman or Acuna or someone else?

Steve Adams
I don't think either finishes in the top three -- Bellinger, Yelich and Rendon will all be ahead of them, barring superhuman finishes from the Braves duo. Both are having great seasons, but Yelich, Bellinger and Rendon have been three of the four best hitters in baseball this season.
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Is there any hope that the Pirates can contend under current ownership, or does Pittsburgh just have to wait for Nutting to sell the team?

Steve Adams
They've been to the Wild Card game recently under Nutting/Huntington. Having actual payroll support from ownership would obviously make things easier, though. I think they can get there, but the struggles of their pitching -- which used to be a strength -- are becoming increasingly concerning. They haven't had much vintage "Ray Searage magic" lately.
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Alex Reyes, Flaherty, Carlos Martinez, Hudson in 2020... Do I bother getting my hopes up?

Steve Adams
At this point, you just cannot pencil Alex Reyes into the pitching plans. He's never shown the ability to stay healthy. If they can somehow coax even 80 innings out of him, that's a huge bonus, but you have to stop planning around a guy at a certain point.
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80 innings? There's a sobering kick in the giblets.

Steve Adams
Alex Reyes has never even thrown 120 innings in a season and a grand total of 67 innings over the past three years. I wish he'd stay healthy, because I love watching elite pitching -- but he's been pitching professionally since 2013 (mostly as a starter) and has a total of 462 innings.
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Reds fans hate David Bell and think he is doing a terrible job, what do you think?

Steve Adams
I think Bell is an easy fall guy after Reds fans entered the year with expectations that were probably too high. I get labeled a "Reds hater" frequently because I didn't buy them as contenders in 2018 or 2019. I don't think the team was that good this season.

Next year, if they can get Bauer going and pair him with Gray and Castillo, I'll be buying that rotation core much more as the foundation for a contender.
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I see so many teams out there that just refuse to rebuild: Mets, Reds, Pirates, Giants, Angels, Rangers, etc., that should rebuild because they aren't going to be contending with what they have.

Steve Adams
The Reds "rebuilt" for like 4 years just to get to this point. Large-scale rebuilds don't always work -- particularly when so many teams throughout the league are embarking on them. (The more teams that rebuild at once, the more diminished the returns on rebuilding are.)

The Reds are proof of this. The White Sox are in a similar position (albeit a more favorable one). At a certain point, the trend of aggressive tanking is going to fade a bit -- likely as more and more teams fail over a period of 3-5 years with nothing to show for it.

I don't think the Angels, for instance "should" rebuild. They have Trout, Ohtani, Simmons, a wildly improved farm system, several good young relievers. If anything, I applaud teams who resist the urge.

Well, I should say I applaud teams who resist the urge of doing so when it's unnecessary. A point can be reached where it is absolutely needed (see: Orioles, Tigers).
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Has the Cubs' window closed? Are the Cardinals the team to beat in the NL Central moving forward?

Steve Adams
The Cubs are 3 games back in the NL Central. They'll have Bryant, Baez, Contreras, Rizzo and others back in 2020. They might need to make some moves with a long-term outlook this winter, but the "window" on the club hasn't even closed for 2019 -- let alone over the long haul.
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