Jays/Phillies Halladay deals – who wins?

Since the buffoons that get tv time on TSN couldn’t be bothered with actual insight yesterday, it’s left to the online world to do the real number crunching so a proper discussion can take place as to whether or not the Phillies deals are enough for the Doc.

The Facts:

Jays asked for Happ, Drabek, and Brown.  Phillies countered with Happ, Taylor, Carrasco, and Donald.

To determine if either deal is enough, we have to determine the value of Halladay’s upcoming season and a half (his contract is up after 2010) to the Phillies vs the value of the prospects coming in return to the Jays.

Roy first.  To determine his value we have to determine how much he costs vs what his expected return will be.

Jays have 40% of their schedule left for 2009.  Roy makes 14.25 million this season.  That means he is still owed 5.7 million for the rest of 2009.  In 2010 his salary is 15.8 million, for a total salary commitment of 21.5 million.  This is per Cot’s Baseball Contracts excellent salary site.

Now we need to determine his expected return.  Wins Above Replacement (WAR) is the right stat for the job.  It measures how many wins a player contributes each season above the level of an easily available replacement player. Fangraphs Roy Halladay page has the info we need. It show’s that the Doc has accounted for 5.0 WAR already this year. So for the remaining 40% of the season a team should expect him to produce 3.3 WAR. Since it looks like he’s going to make his Seattle start in a Jays uniform this week and since he’ll probably be ever so slightly less productive for the rest of the year (he’s having a massively good year), we’ll call it 3.0 Wins Above Replacement that the team acquiring Doc can expect to get out of him till the end of this season. Next year we’ll assume he has a slightly less stellar year, inline with his career stats, and give him 6.5 WAR for 2010. For a grand total of 9.5 Wins that Doc’s new team can expect him to contribute to their cause.

How much are those wins worth? Based on the 2009 price for Free Agent’s, we know that each point of WAR is worth approximately 4.5 million. But that number comes from averaging long term deals, where there is a much higher risk premium (chance the player could get injured/performance tails off) for the team. Since Halladay’s deal only has 1.5 years left, the risk premium is much much reduced. A good estimate for this shorter term is 5.5 million/point of WAR. So he’s worth 5.5 million/Win times 9.5 Wins. Which gives us a value of 52.9 million.

We also have to factor in that if he walks from the Philliles to free agency at the end of 2010, they would receive two TYPE A draft pics in compensation (assuming they offered him arbitration, and they would). The value of those picks is approximately 8 million, per Hardball times draft research.

Lastly we need to in some fashion account for the extra revenue that Halladay’s new team stands to reap from making the playoffs due to his adding 3 Wins to their record. Right now the Phillies chances of making the playoffs are estimated to be 77% by Baseball Prospectus and 88% by Beyond the Box Score. Let’s split the difference and call their chances of playing in October 83%. So how much more likely will the Phillies be to make the playoffs if they pick up Roy? Again, per Beyond the Box Score, the three wins Roy is likely to add to the Phillies increase their post season chances by 10%. So that would give them an all but uncatchable (sorry Mets) 93% likelyhood of playing in October.

So how much is post season play worth? Baseball Prospectus’ Nate Silver did some excellent work on this very question in the BP book Baseball Between the Numbers. Taking into account direct gate increases in the post season and all the ancillary revenue going forward, Nate estimated 25 million in extra value for a given team by making the playoffs.

So with no Halladay the Phillies have an 83% shot at 25 million, which equals 20.75 million.
With Halladay they increase that to a 93% shot at 25 million, which equals 23.25 million. The difference is how much Halladay contributes to their chances of lapping up all that post season cash. 2.5 million.

So, adding up all the individual components of Halladay’s worth we have:

Regular season performance (9.5 WAR) – 52.9 million
Type A free agent loss compensation – 8 million
Increased post season shot (specific to the Phillies) – 2.5 million

TOTAL – 63.4 million in expected return he brings to Philadelphia.

As we mentioned above, his salary is 21.5 million.  Thus by subtraction, Roy Halladay’s value to the Phillies is a rather massive 41.9 million dollars.

God damn he’s so fucking good…must focus, must focus.  No emotion allowed here.  Save it for the 24 hour binge when an announcement is made.

Okay back to it.  Now all we have to determine is if the possible players coming back to the Jays in the proposed deals are worth more or less than 41.9 million.

Not as difficult as it sounds (thank God).  Victor Wang of Hardball Times did some ground breaking research on how to value prospects.   It is reproduced in nice, easy to read chart form at BtBS by Eric Manning. Basically by looking at past drafts we are able to evaluate just how much value a Top 10, Top 25, Top 50, Top 100 pitching or hitting prospect brings to a team for the 6 years they are under direct control of their original club.

So let’s have a look at those deals!

DEAL #1 – The deal the Jays offered but the Phillies rejected:

J.A. Happ, lhp – 16.2 million – pitching well at the MLB level right now for the Phillies but preseason was only projected as a B- prospect. The former means he’s worth upwards of 25 million. The latter only 7.3 million. We’ll split the difference.

Kyle Drabek, rhp – 15.5 million – Phillies top pitching prospect in the minors

Dominic Brown, of – 23.4 million – Top 50 hitting prospect for Phillies, just ranked 17th in BBA midseason poll.

TOTAL – 55.1 million

DEAL #2 – The deal the Phillies offered but the Jays rejected:

J.A. Happ, lhp – 16.2 million

Michael Taylor, of – 23.4 million – similar Top 50 hitter to Brown, closer to being MLB ready, but 2 years older.

Carlos Carrasco, rhp – 9.8 million – was Top 50 but having a rough 2009. We’ll call him Top 100 now.

Jason Donald, ss – 14.2 million – Top 75 hitting prospect, ranked 69th in BBA’s preseason poll.

TOTAL – 63.6 million

Deal #1 would net the Jays 13.2 million in value.

Deal #2 (oddly enough, the one the Phillies are pushing…this just show’s how big a difference an extra prospect makes since the likelihood of any ONE prospect working out is so risky) nets the Jays 21.7 million in value.

As a quick aside, given that the Jays want Deal #1 and the Phillies are pushing for Deal #2, the most likely outcome may be some slightly different combo where the Phillies get to keep Drabek (the player they really seem to not want to deal) and the Jays get Happ, Brown, Donald, and perhaps the Phillies single A 18 year old fireballer Jason Knapp.  This deal, if it were done, would net the Jays 24.0 million, again perversely more than Deal #2, even though the Phillies would probably prefer this one.

What does this all tell us?

That regardless of which deal the Jays eventually accept, they will be anally raping the Phillies with Gary Roberts like intensity. The only difference being that in Deal #1 the Phillies get to use lube.

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3 Responses to “Jays/Phillies Halladay deals – who wins?”

  1. RAMAGE.08 Says:

    Very well structured…and perfectly capped off by the Roberts analogy – transferable to so many situations.

    I’m thinking you must have consulted Griffin in order to arrive at such an in-depth analysis (hahahaha!!!).

  2. gambler23 Says:

    Thought you might enjoy that last line.

    Good to see the Red Sox are now in the bidding too. Makes it much more likely for the Phillies to pony up Drabek in the deal. Although that 18 yr old fireballer sounds like he might even be better.

  3. The Captain Says:

    Wow… that was fucken’ great! Really good writing. You should be writing for T.O. Sports Magazine.

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