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Tony

What should the Sox do with James McCann?

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It was a topic in the game thread today and I think it probably deserves a thread. 

James McCann has had a very good Sox career in his 130 games. Sporting an .801 OPS while being a leader on this team, reliable defense behind the plate and maybe most importantly.....provides stability and comfort to the ace of this staff. It's crystal clear Lucas really enjoys having James behind the plate. 

McCann just recently turned 30 and will be a FA at the end of the year. He's currently making 5.4 million this season. In theory, James is looking at his one big payday this offseason, and wants to be a starter. I'm sure there at least a handful of teams that can promise him that. With Grandal here......what should the Sox do with McCann? Does a 3/30 deal make sense for the Sox? For McCann? Do the Sox keep their flexibility and use their qualifying offer on him this offseason? Does McCann accept it, or still test the market? 

Lots of questions and I think it's a good conversation to have, a lot of different variables at play, might not be a right answer...

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Sox will let him walk in the offseason. No sense in spending your resources on a second catcher when management has already said they don’t really want to use him at DH part time

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I consider James a leader and a core player. Do the Yankees have pricey veterans on the bench? Yes. I would make a serious 3-4 year bid and see if someone outbids the Sox. You can cut costs somewhere else like DH. When you have value its OK to pay a fair price. Most of their pitching is cost-controlled. Losing James will hurt the team. 

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6 minutes ago, pcq said:

I consider James a leader and a core player. Do the Yankees have pricey veterans on the bench? Yes. I would make a serious 3-4 year bid and see if someone outbids the Sox. You can cut costs somewhere else like DH. When you have value its OK to pay a fair price. Most of their pitching is cost-controlled. Losing James will hurt the team. 

Comparing the Yankee spending to the Whitesox spending is apples to oranges. They are in their own world when it comes to spending. They’ve chosen their catcher for the next few years in Grandal, highly doubt they splurge on his backup catcher 

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29 minutes ago, pcq said:

I consider James a leader and a core player. Do the Yankees have pricey veterans on the bench? Yes. I would make a serious 3-4 year bid and see if someone outbids the Sox. You can cut costs somewhere else like DH. When you have value its OK to pay a fair price. Most of their pitching is cost-controlled. Losing James will hurt the team. 

My heart says to keep him but my brain says what will you give me for him.

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James is going to want someone's starter money and he's earned the shot to get it, and he is not going to get that with the Sox

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What’s McCann worth to the Sox just based on the fact that their top two pitchers prefer pitching to him and perform better when pitching to him? That alone makes him worth $10M/year imo.

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It is almost becoming an awkward situation. We have Grandal off to a really slow start and a really big contract. And then we have McCann picking up right where he left off. Plus the fact that he has a great flow/ game plan with Giolito.  And he has history with Keuchel too (teammates at Arkansas). I  think there is a way they both could coexist on this team. They both bring alot to the table. 

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McCann is considered a poor framer by fangraphs but how does fWAR account for this?

*Giolito ERA pitching to Grandal: 5.66

*Giolito ERA pitching to McCann: 1.29

and then there’s this as well which I don’t believe even accounted for today’s game...

https://mobile.twitter.com/CST_soxvan/status/1296509695633620992

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54 minutes ago, Tony said:

It was a topic in the game thread today and I think it probably deserves a thread. 

James McCann has had a very good Sox career in his 130 games. Sporting an .801 OPS while being a leader on this team, reliable defense behind the plate and maybe most importantly.....provides stability and comfort to the ace of this staff. It's crystal clear Lucas really enjoys having James behind the plate. 

McCann just recently turned 30 and will be a FA at the end of the year. He's currently making 5.4 million this season. In theory, James is looking at his one big payday this offseason, and wants to be a starter. I'm sure there at least a handful of teams that can promise him that. With Grandal here......what should the Sox do with McCann? Does a 3/30 deal make sense for the Sox? For McCann? Do the Sox keep their flexibility and use their qualifying offer on him this offseason? Does McCann accept it, or still test the market? 

Lots of questions and I think it's a good conversation to have, a lot of different variables at play, might not be a right answer...

Unless the Sox are willing to spend big on a Frontline SP or OF, If 3/30 is an option, then sign him up. Having him and Grandal together will likely increase their effectiveness for the duration of their contracts. They are both good enough to get at bats at DH and Eloy will stay in left for a couple of years. Vaughn, Abreu, backup C will cover DH. 

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36 minutes ago, lostfan said:

James is going to want someone's starter money and he's earned the shot to get it, and he is not going to get that with the Sox

Yup I love what McCann brings but there's zero chance he signs here.  He wants 3/50 and a starting gig.  Not happening on the South Side.  I'm bummed but hey good job acquiring him for cheap and helping sheppard  gio  and this young team.

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2 minutes ago, chitownsportsfan said:

Yup I love what McCann brings but there's zero chance he signs here.  He wants 3/50 and a starting gig.  Not happening on the South Side.  I'm bummed but hey good job acquiring him for cheap and helping sheppard  gio  and this young team.

3/$50 off of 4-5 really solid months and the All-Star berth, compared to the relatively pedestrian rest of his career with DET?

How would we feel if we were fans of another team and they signed McCann to that kind of deal?

Really not that far off from Grandal's numbers, 1 year less for contract, "only" $2 million more per season for Grandal, who has an established track record and playoff history of performances dating back over a number of years.

 

5,2

5.8

4.1

4.7

5.2=25/5=5.0 fWAR average over the last five full seasons for Grandal

 

James McCann is at +2.1 for his ENTIRE career.    Including 2.3 last season.  That would have to be about his max, right?

 

 

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26 minutes ago, JUSTgottaBELIEVE said:

McCann is considered a poor framer by fangraphs but how does fWAR account for this?

*Giolito ERA pitching to Grandal: 5.66

*Giolito ERA pitching to McCann: 1.29

and then there’s this as well which I don’t believe even accounted for today’s game...

https://mobile.twitter.com/CST_soxvan/status/1296509695633620992

Yeah, just for the record,  Gios worst start of the year was against the Twins. I really don't think having Pudge himself catch that hame would have made a difference. 

He has a 5.34 career era against them, so it isn't like this was a big outlier.  He was great against Cleveland,  Detroit, and a depleted Milwaukee offense.  Again is there a real difference to be made there? It's not like shut down the 27 Yankees there.

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11 minutes ago, JUSTgottaBELIEVE said:

McCann is considered a poor framer by fangraphs but how does fWAR account for this?

*Giolito ERA pitching to Grandal: 5.66

*Giolito ERA pitching to McCann: 1.29

and then there’s this as well which I don’t believe even accounted for today’s game...

https://mobile.twitter.com/CST_soxvan/status/1296509695633620992

And these are the kind of tweets that are helping to make their situation awkward. But it is what it is. There's 5 weeks left. At this point that is definitely one of the things everyone is looking at - pitching era/catcher. I do think the ERA will come down as Grandal continues to catch. I also think that Grandal is a super talented player who has a good eye for the strikezone. Who can take a walk and get on base. At the same time, McCann has the pitchers pitching with a better flow to the game. 5 weeks left.  they have to work this out.

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Do people not realize we are talking about a catcher that strikes out ~28% of the time and doesn’t walk more than 5%? He doesn’t have the launch angle to make me think he can sustain a high iso if he isn’t squaring the ball up well. I like him a lot, but at most he gets 10m/y for 1+1 or maybe 2+1. He’s no more valuable than Tyler Flowers was at his peak

I’d keep him. He’s not going to be expensive

Edited by MackowiakYakYak
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4 minutes ago, southsider2k5 said:

Yeah, just for the record,  Gios worst start of the year was against the Twins. I really don't think having Pudge himself catch that hame would have made a difference. 

He has a 5.34 career era against them, so it isn't like this was a big outlier.  He was great against Cleveland,  Detroit, and a depleted Milwaukee offense.  Again is there a real difference to be made there? It's not like shut down the 27 Yankees there.

2/3 of those “great” games this year were caught by McCann as well as majority (if not all?) of Giolito’s all star season last year. Finished 6th in Cy Young voting coming off a season in which he sported a 6+ ERA, again without McCann. Sorry, it’s not a SSS or coincidence at this point.

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We have to spend the money wisely, on a pitcher, whether it's Lynn, Gibson or Minor last season (and Lynn continuing to be great at a bargain basement price of $8 million), Kenta Maeda (trade)/Odorizzi for the Twins.  Examples from just a few teams.  The Reds come to mind here as well with Sonny Gray/Bauer/Miley.

We know all the FA names out there, it's just a matter of finding the right one.

That way, they don't have to completely rely on Keuchel outperforming again, Cease pitching over his control issues, Lopez/Rodon, Kopech (who knows what we actually get out of him) and Dunning.

Edited by caulfield12
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1 minute ago, JUSTgottaBELIEVE said:

2/3 of those “great” games this year were caught by McCann as well as majority (if not all?) of Giolito’s all star season last year. Finished 6th in Cy Young voting coming off a season in which he sported a 6+ ERA, again without McCann. Sorry, it’s not a SSS or coincidence at this point.

That is waaaay to simplistic.

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1 minute ago, southsider2k5 said:

That is waaaay to simplistic.

How so? Those are the stats. And Giolito himself has constantly praised McCann over the last two seasons and attributed much of his success to McCann. Did it again today.

Giolito’s a smart dude. This is his not so subtle way of telling Ricky that McCann needs to start when he’s on the mound (while also avoiding a rift with Grandal).

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Catcher ERA being important is the biggest lie in baseball. And if Giolito doesn't feel comfortable pitching to other catchers, then he's just not as good as we thought

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50 minutes ago, JUSTgottaBELIEVE said:

McCann is considered a poor framer by fangraphs but how does fWAR account for this?

*Giolito ERA pitching to Grandal: 5.66

*Giolito ERA pitching to McCann: 1.29

and then there’s this as well which I don’t believe even accounted for today’s game...

https://mobile.twitter.com/CST_soxvan/status/1296509695633620992

Grandal has made 13 starts at catcher for the White Sox.  He’s literally only caught these guys a couple of times.  I know you want to see Grandal fail to prove you were right about McCann, but at least try to objective.  Quoting CERA at this stage of a season for a catcher just getting to know his staff is quite frankly ridiculous.

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53 minutes ago, shakes said:

Unless the Sox are willing to spend big on a Frontline SP or OF, If 3/30 is an option, then sign him up. Having him and Grandal together will likely increase their effectiveness for the duration of their contracts. They are both good enough to get at bats at DH and Eloy will stay in left for a couple of years. Vaughn, Abreu, backup C will cover DH. 

We don’t need to spend $10M on backup catcher and part time DH when we have Grandal, Abreu, & Vaughn in front of him.  It’s a poor use of our resources when we have gaping holes at the top of our rotation and in RF like you imply.

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4 minutes ago, Chicago White Sox said:

Grandal has made 13 starts at catcher for the White Sox.  He’s literally only caught these guys a couple of times.  I know you want to see Grandal fail to prove you were right about McCann, but at least try to objective.  Quoting CERA at this stage of a season for a catcher just getting to know his staff is quite frankly ridiculous.

Nah, I don’t want to see Grandal fail. He’s a huge piece of the puzzle considering they paid him to be the starting catcher for the next 4 seasons. But I’m still upset they didn’t extend McCann and use the Grandal cost savings to upgrade RF and/or SP.

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