Bricks from the Warehouse

August 8
Transaction Analysis: Mike Bordick to the Mets

The Orioles give up: 33 year old Mike Bordick, who needs no introduction. Peter Gammons reports that the Mets would like to re-sign him long term, which would make us happy beyond belief. Not because Mike Bordick is terrible, but because he is one of the symbols of this franchise's woes: a fascination with mid-30s veterans.

The Orioles get:

  • Melvin Mora: a 28 year old utility player who is basically a younger version of Rich Amaral who can also play shortstop. Mora is a career minor leaguer (1991-1998 without ever sniffing the majors) who has been hitting 260/317/423 for the Mets this year,which is about what his minor league career suggests he will do. The Mets traded him because they felt his defense was inadequate for a starting shortstop on a contending team.
  • Mike Kinkade: a 27 year old career minor leaguer. To be fair, he has had some very very good minor league seasons, but has never come close to a major league job either. It might have something to do with the fact that he has always been far too old for his leagues.
      1995  22 in Rookie Ball, he hit 353/452/477
      1996  23 in low-A, he hit       303/394/475
      1997  24 in AA, he hit          385/455/588 (!)
      Oddly, this failed to earn him even a major league cup of coffee.
      He was playing for the screwed up Brewers franchise, which might have
      something to do with it.
      1998  25 in AAA, he hit         300/372/457
      1999  26 in AAA, he hit         308/359/452
      This year, he's tearing up AA (366/429/713).  He wasn't demoted; he was
      sent there to learn catching.  He's played mostly third in his career.
  • Leslie Brea: A 21 year old RHP in his fifth season of minor league ball who was a reliever for the Mariners until last year, when he was traded to the Mets. They converted him to a starter. He had a good year in A-ball. Now he is in AA, and has been holding his own at 21:
      W-L    ERA    G GS CG SHO SV  IP     H   R  ER HR HB BB  SO WP   AVG
      5- 8   4.24  19 18  0   0  0  93.1  85  53  44 10  7 61  86  8  .246
      He's always had very good strikeout rates -- this is the *worst* rate of
      his career, and his control has suffered some.
  • Pat Gorman: 22-year old minor league RHP. Still in low-A ball, for the third straight season. He's a relief pitcher, and minor league RHRPs are about a penny a dozen. He's having a good year this year, but it's low-A and he's 22 already, and it's his third year at the level:
      W-L    ERA    G GS CG SHO SV  IP     H   R  ER HR HB BB  SO WP   AVG
      2- 2   1.93  30  0  0   0 15  37.1  24  10   8  1  1 28  54  9  .182
      He's also always had very good strikeout rates, but has had lousy
      control and gives up a lot of hits.

    Clearly, this was not a blockbuster deal, which makes it look even more strongly as if they intend this to be a rental and they intend to re-sign Bordick. A good deal, though, whether they do get him back or not. He was having a very good year, but that was not sufficient for the Orioles to contend, and there's nothing less valuable than a good year from a 34 year old player on a team 10 games below .500. If they do re-sign him, they have picked up some useful bench players and a Grade B pitching prospect for nothing. If they do not re-sign him, they have given up an old player having a career year, nothing more. The Orioles are not likely to contend until 2002 at the earliest, and Mike Bordick is not likely to be a good player at that point. Moreover, letting him go frees up the Orioles to go after free agent Alex Rodriguez this offseason, without having it being seen as an insult to their incumbent shortstop.

    © 2000 The Orioles Warehouse
    Offer expires 8/31/00.
    Last Updated: August 8, 2000