Rumor: “Nothing alive” with Mike Morse yet, but Yankees/Nats will talk trade

michael-morse

There is supposedly “nothing alive” in trade talks between the Yankees and Nationals for outfielder Mike Morse yet, according to Chad Jennings of the Journal News. However, the Yankees have already called and even though the Nationals were not yet ready to talk trades at that time the two teams will eventually get together to discuss it, says Jack Curry of the YES Network.

Morse has been on the trade block since the Nationals re-signed Adam LaRoche and the Yankees are seen as a good fit. Not a wonderful outfielder (he had a negative-8.9 UZR last season), the Yankees would likely use Morse as their regular DH against right handed pitching and in the outfield against lefties.

The one problem is that Morse is supposedly against being a DH. He doesn’t have a no trade clause so there isn’t anything he could do to stop a trade, but the Yankees would be weary of trading for a player who could become disgruntled if he’s forced to play a position against his will.

If that weren’t a problem there is still the price tag to consider. Morse will earn $7 million next year and then will be a free agent. From there it is hard to tell if the Yankees will be in a position to re-sign him as Morse could be in line for a big payday if he has a healthy and productive season in 2013. Normally it wouldn’t be a problem for the Yankees, but they have tightened their purse strings as they head toward a $189 million budget and there might not be room to re-sign him.

That would mean they can only count on Morse playing in Pinstripes for one year if they traded for him. The rumor is that he’s going to cost at least an elite prospect plus a lefty reliever to acquire. A lefty reliever is no problem, with Boone Logan, Clay Rapada, and Cesar Cabral they have that covered. The problem is that they might decide that the cost is too much for one year of Morse as dealing an elite prospect will also hurt them toward their budget goal.

Don’t expect them to get lucky and grab him on the cheap. It will take a lot more than Adam Warren and Logan to swing this deal. At least five teams are already interested in him with the Red Sox and the Rays both in the mix so far.

Injuries limited Morse to just 102 games last year, but he still hit .291/.321/.470. Since becoming a regular in 2010, he has hit .296/.345/.516. He’s a poor defensive outfielder, but he can also play first base which is good considering the Yankees don’t really have a backup for Mark Teixeira at this point.

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10 Responses to Rumor: “Nothing alive” with Mike Morse yet, but Yankees/Nats will talk trade

  1. ldubinsky says:

    a lefty reliever and a middling prospect would likely get it done and would be worth it.

    • Doubt it very much. If the Yankees were trading Morse would you be happy if all they got back was one reliever and a middling prospect? I don't think so. Considering there are a half dozen other teams involved already I don't see why they would have to settle.

  2. ldubinsky says:

    there could be 40 teams "involved" but not offering more than that.

    Morse is a poor defender and has only one-year before free agency….

    we shall see what return he brings to the Nats.

  3. wally says:

    Boone Logan for Morse straight-up is not an unreasonable deal. Logan has been a doli ron man for Yanks and is often under-rated. He should also be much easier to re-sign thamn Morse. Don't see why Morse — with his injury history, defensive deficiencies, and one-year of control at much higher salary should command much more than Logan. The only reason, really, is that other teams always consider Yanks desperate and willing to overpay. And in this case, short a solid RH hitter, there is some deperation. I would just give Hairston a one year deal at pretty much what he could get for two years elsewhere, even if it's an overpay in 2013. If for some reason this doesn't work I'd consider sweeetening the Morse offer. But I woudn't go beyond an Addam Warren. Maybe a CoJo. Yanks can't afford to keep overpaying — those days hopefully are over.

  4. wally says:

    *a solid iron man*

  5. Talk about overvaluing your own and undervaluing somebody else's player. Logan for Morse doesn't even come close to a fair deal. Take off those Yankees colored glasses. You talk like $7 million for an outfielder who can post a .850-.900 OPS. is expensive. It's not. There are plenty of teams out there that need bats, but don't want to spend a lot or want long-term commitments. As evidenced by the fact that there is no shortage of interest in Morse. And trust me, every team interested would love to trade one lefty reliever for a quality player like Morse.

    More realistically to land Morse it might take a player like Joba Chamberlain or even Phil Hughes.

    • ldubinsky says:

      Boston Herald speculates that Sox might get Morse….. for a left-handed reliever and a mid-level prospect.
      http://bostonherald.com/sports/red_sox_mlb/clubho

      • You might want to go back and re-read that article because those Red Sox prospects it mentions are their top pitching prospects. No mid-level guys mentioned.

        "GM Mike Rizzo wants young pitching and a left-handed reliever in exchange for Morse and reportedly has fielded calls from several teams."

        "they have closely guarded their top prospects, including pitchers Rubby De La Rosa, Allen Webster, Matt Barnes, Steven Wright, Henry Owens, Anthony Ranaudo and Brandon Workman."

        Like I said, this is going to take something significant to land Morse. The Yankees don't really have many elite pitching prospects so it could potentially be guys like Hughes or Joba. Maybe Mason Williams or Slade Heathcott if they go the younger prospect route. Either way, it's not Boone Logan and Adam Warren for Mike Morse.

        • ldubinsky says:

          I did. it mentions those prospects as ones that the Sox would not wish to offer for Morse.

          I understand that you believe scarcity will prompt somebody to offer more than Morse, with his lack of D and one-year under contract, is really worth, but it ain't necessarily so.

          it may well behoove us to instead offer more for a better player. Upton is available (though not exactly wonderful) and Stanton may well be and is likely worth dealing a FEW top-shelf prospects.

  6. I'll have a post up on this early tomorrow morning, but I wanted to point out that Morse was traded for the 57th overall prospect in baseball, another very good, but still undeveloped pitching prospect, and John Jaso (Jaso actually went to Oakland for another prospect to be named later). Even if that prospect to be named later isn't anything great, this is still a much better package then Boone Logan plus a middling prospect. The Yankees don't even have a pitching prospect that healthy and as good as A.J. Cole.