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Report: Wagner Thinks He Will Be Gone from Astros

Discussion in 'Houston Astros' started by Manny Ramirez, Sep 29, 2003.

  1. Manny Ramirez

    Manny Ramirez The Music Man
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    Wonder what you guys think about this, if it happens:

    Closer thinks club will reduce payroll

    HOUSTON -- Astros closer Billy Wagner expects to be traded before next season because he thinks owner Drayton McLane wants to reduce the team's payroll.

    Wagner has one season remaining on a three-year deal that pays him $24 million and is due $9 million for next season. Richard Hidalgo is due $12 million next season in the final year of his contract, and Wagner thinks the two big contracts will force general manager Gerry Hunsicker to make trades.

    "I think it will happen, I really do," Wagner said Sunday after the Astros finished the season with an 8-5 win over Milwaukee. "Gerry's got his hands tied with this whole budget for salaries. We're just in a wanting-to-compete situation, it's not a get-better situation.

    "If that's the case, they're probably going to have to cut me and probably Hidalgo. If they can get the trade, we'll definitely be gone next season."

    Astros owner Drayton McLane, who began this year with a $70 million payroll, was surprised at the remarks.

    "You have to evaluate every part of the team, and the financial side of it is the most important," McLane said. "But it's way too premature to make any kind of statement or even consider anything like that. We would like very much for Billy to be part of the Houston Astros next year."

    Hidalgo said he knew there was a possibility he could be dealt.

    "I've got in my mind that they might do it," he said. "I don't think about it. I'm going home, relax and wait, work out and wait for the season. I'd love to be here, but if they make the decision, there's nothing I can do about it. I just have to do my best."

    Wagner thinks it would be a good business move, especially with Octavio Dotel available to replace him as a closer.

    "I hope I will be here. I hope things change," Wagner said. "I know my contract allows me to be trade eligible, and I have a lot of value based on this year. This team could get younger and better with me being gone."

    Wagner thought the Astros should have made a bold move after the All-Star break to improve the team for the stretch drive.

    "This year we had an opportunity to really do something special," Wagner said. "We had a lot of kids overachieving. When it came time to get somebody to really help us, they wouldn't. There wasn't much out there, and there wasn't much we could do."

    McLane said the organization had not even started its evaluation process.

    "Billy came up through the Astros organization and we're extremely proud of him," McLane said. "This is probably the best season he's had, and I'd hate to think of the Houston Astros without Billy."




     
  2. rrj_gamz

    rrj_gamz Contributing Member

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    I would hate to have them both go, but I definitely think Dalgy will be gone, but I'm not so sure about Wags...

    We need another quality arm, and I think Lane can pick up were Dalgy left off...
     
  3. codell

    codell Contributing Member

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    AP Report: Billy Wagner expects himself and Hidalgo to be traded

    http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=1626125

    HOUSTON -- Astros closer Billy Wagner expects to be traded before next season because he thinks owner Drayton McLane wants to reduce the team's payroll.

    Wagner has one season remaining on a three-year deal that pays him $24 million and is due $9 million for next season. Richard Hidalgo is due $12 million next season in the final year of his contract, and Wagner thinks the two big contracts will force general manager Gerry Hunsicker to make trades.

    "I think it will happen, I really do," Wagner said Sunday after the Astros finished the season with an 8-5 win over Milwaukee. "Gerry's got his hands tied with this whole budget for salaries. We're just in a wanting-to-compete situation, it's not a get-better situation.

    "If that's the case, they're probably going to have to cut me and probably Hidalgo. If they can get the trade, we'll definitely be gone next season."

    Astros owner Drayton McLane, who began this year with a $70 million payroll, was surprised at the remarks.

    "You have to evaluate every part of the team, and the financial side of it is the most important," McLane said. "But it's way too premature to make any kind of statement or even consider anything like that. We would like very much for Billy to be part of the Houston Astros next year."

    Hidalgo said he knew there was a possibility he could be dealt.

    "I've got in my mind that they might do it," he said. "I don't think about it. I'm going home, relax and wait, work out and wait for the season. I'd love to be here, but if they make the decision, there's nothing I can do about it. I just have to do my best."

    Wagner thinks it would be a good business move, especially with Octavio Dotel available to replace him as a closer.

    "I hope I will be here. I hope things change," Wagner said. "I know my contract allows me to be trade eligible, and I have a lot of value based on this year. This team could get younger and better with me being gone."

    Wagner thought the Astros should have made a bold move after the All-Star break to improve the team for the stretch drive.

    "This year we had an opportunity to really do something special," Wagner said. "We had a lot of kids overachieving. When it came time to get somebody to really help us, they wouldn't. There wasn't much out there, and there wasn't much we could do."

    McLane said the organization had not even started its evaluation process.

    "Billy came up through the Astros organization and we're extremely proud of him," McLane said. "This is probably the best season he's had, and I'd hate to think of the Houston Astros without Billy."

    ----------------

    Billy is now officially, the most outspoken person on the team.
     
  4. codell

    codell Contributing Member

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    Here is another excerpt from the Chronicle:

    "We'll be looking at a tape job and fill-ins and no marquee additions in the offseason," said Wagner, whose no-trade clause expired Sunday. "I can see myself being here, but only if they have to keep me if somehow they can't get the trade they want. I don't think it's something they want to do. I just think it's something they need to do to fulfill their budget. Of course you have Octavio Dotel or (Brad) Lidge, who have shown that they can fill my shoes and pitch in my role.
     
  5. xiki

    xiki Contributing Member

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    The ONLY good thing that can come out of trading Wags would be if the 'stros received three good, solid studs, including at least one strongly established plus two on the verge.
     
  6. ChucklesG

    ChucklesG Member

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    Wagner's a great closer, but he's just that, a closer, and a 9 million dollar closer at that. Getting one stud prospect is a given, 2 is a possibility, but any team giving up 3 stud prospects for a closer, no matter how good, would be completely mind boggling.
     
  7. Buck Turgidson

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    Well, he just perfectly summed up his attitude towards baseball.
     
  8. tierre_brown

    tierre_brown Contributing Member
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    Actually, as desperate as Boston is for a closer (they actually took Byung-Hyun, the notorious Yankee choke artist, as their closer?!), I tihnk they'd be willing to give up 2 studs and a very good prospect for Wags. Maybe we'll get another Jeff Bagwell?
     
  9. ChucklesG

    ChucklesG Member

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    Boston doesn't have 2 stud prospects in their farm system.
     
  10. RunninRaven

    RunninRaven Clown Toilet Advocate
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    I wonder what position they would trade for if they got rid of Hidalgo or Wags. Probably SP. I mean, where else do we have a player that isn't pretty well dug in? Lane will likely fill in if Richard is traded. Biggio will play CF for at least one more year, I imagine. Berkman is a lock. At first you have Bagwell, Kent at 2nd, AE at SS, Ensberg at 3rd. Perhaps they would let Ausmus go and get a different catcher, but I doubt it. So it comes down to SP (or maybe just prospects that could fill in for Bagwell or Biggio when they retire.

    Actually, if we could get a legit, "true" CFer that can hit for Wagner, I would be more than happy. But I don't see that happening.
     
  11. ima_drummer2k

    ima_drummer2k Contributing Member

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    Sure, Billy. It's not the player's fault, it's management's fault. :rolleyes:

    BTW, nice game against the Giants last week...
     
  12. tierre_brown

    tierre_brown Contributing Member
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    I was just saying get a Bagwell as in: get a prospect who turns out to be great for someone who isn't quite as good. I agree that SP is the position with most need; I heard even our farm system is depleted of SPs for the most part. I just think that Boston would be willing to give up a lot for a Wags type of player, a very good closer. If they don't have prospects (I don't know much about their farm system, but Chuckles says they have nothing), there are plenty of other teams in the same situation where they'd love to have a closer. I'm sure we'd get at least 2 quality prospects out of the trade.
     
  13. A-Train

    A-Train Running With Scissors

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    The Astros paid Wagner $93,023 per inning this year...That has GOT to be some kind of record...

    Your closer is definitely somebody that shouldn't be one of the highest paid players on your team. The Dodgers had the best closer in baseball history, and look at where they ended up...
     
  14. Manny Ramirez

    Manny Ramirez The Music Man
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    Hey codell,

    No fair! I posted this story first but I get no respect in this forum!;)

     
  15. codell

    codell Contributing Member

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    Holy cow. Thats the 2nd time in 3 weeks that I posted a dup thread. I had an unblemished record before that. :p

    Mods, please take away my thread starting priveleges.
     
  16. payaso

    payaso Member

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    Lopez's column in the Chronicle this morning was disturbing...
    http://www.chron.com/cs/CDA/ssistory.mpl/sports/bb/2126133

    Especially the part about Drayton's #195 ranking on the Forbes 400, when the likes of Steinbrenner, Colangelo, and Cardinals and Red Sox ownership are nowhere on the list.

    All he would have to do is spend the money one year for starting pitching and some clutch hitting to punch up the roster, win a World Series, and he could get a sweeter TV deal, and the money that goes with it, and probably do better than break even on the effort.

    I mean, c'mon- Drayton's no spring chicken and you can't take $1.2B with you when the Reaper comes calling.

    It is what it's always been with Drayton- the Astros are no more than a cost center for his grocery store empire. He will continue to run them like Wal-Mart- I expect self-serve will-call kiosks and one-wash-and-done team gear next.
     
  17. MadMax

    MadMax Contributing Member
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    payaso -- i wouldn't expect ANYONE to intentionally run a business in the red. these guys didn't get to be rich by throwing their money away.

    by the way...spending more money does not necessarily mean world series titles...ask the cardinals, orioles and rangers.
     
  18. pgabriel

    pgabriel Contributing Member

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    Thank you,

    I love how everyone wants to spend Drayton's money. I'm just glad Steve Francis never makes statements like these about the Rockets.

    But I know the real reason you defend Drayton Max, you Bears have to stick together.
     
  19. MadMax

    MadMax Contributing Member
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    1. the more billy wagner talks, the sicker i get. the guy needs to learn when to be quiet....particularly in a town that has treated him very well. he'll never have to worry about money ever again in his life...and that's drayton's money he's living on.

    2. i knew drayton's son at baylor...we had a few classes together. my closest friend from home and i sat next to him during the referendum. the day before the referendum my friend looked at him and said with a smile, "if your dad moves the astros to virginia, we're gonna kick your ass"....drayton's son kinda laughed uncomfortably...and my friend looked at him very seriously and said, "no...i'm serious." it was so funny!
     
  20. payaso

    payaso Member

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    Hey Max- if your team payroll is 7% of your net worth, and you're pushing 70, and your family is taken care of well into the 22nd century, WHY THE HELL NOT spend the money for Houston Joe Six-Pack, who plops down a piece of paycheck to fill a seat in your downtown palace, who pays airport prices for mall food-court food, to put a championship team on the field? It's a BASEBALL TEAM, for cryin' out load- he didn't need no damn SBA loan to buy it!
    IN spite of his book-cooking and poormouthing, Drayton has not lost money since buying the Astros. He needs to give something back. He could win back the confidence of his long time players, who might actually then go out and win a meaningful game, knowing that their owner has, in his words, "done what it takes to be a champion".
     
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