Thursday, July 31, 2008

The Deadline Has Passed

You'll never know the ups and downs we have experienced over the past 24 hours, and unfortunately, I'm not permitted to share the details with you per MLB rules. Obviously, our conversations ended in troughs rather than peaks, but it was a wild ride nonetheless.

In the past two days we were serious enough to exchange names with seven different organizations in wide-ranging deals. A number of those deals even went through multiple iterations of players involved, which generally gives any deal life and a much better chance of happening. In some instances, the deals were just too skinny for us to accept, and in others our trading partner decided to move in another direction (or not move at all). At the end of the day all of our deals fell within the 95% that get discussed but never happen.

That does not necessarily mean that the players we have now will automatically be with us for the remainder of the year, though, as a number of deals happen after this July 31 deadline every season. The August waiver trading period is a bit tricky, so I'll attempt a point-by-point explanation:
  • No player can get traded after July 31 without being placed on trade waivers.
  • Unlike outright waivers, August trade waivers are NOT irrevocable. In other words, if we place a player on trade waivers, and another organization places a claim on that player, we can take him off waivers if we don't want to lose him or trade him.
  • Once a player is placed on trade waivers, the other 29 organizations have 48 hours during which to place a claim. If a player is claimed by another organization, one of two things can happen: a) the player can be traded to (or simply given to) the claiming organization only or b) the player can be pulled off of waivers by the originating Club. Any trade with the claiming Club has to be consummated within 48 hours.
  • If a player is claimed on trade waivers, and the originating Club pulls that player off of waivers, he CANNOT be traded for the remainder of the season unless... the originating Club puts the player on trade waivers a second time. If they do this, however, the waivers become irrevocable so any claim would result in the automatic assignment of the player to the claiming team.
  • If a player goes unclaimed, he can be traded to any other team at any time.

Due to these rules, many teams will place virtually there entire 25-man Major League roster on trade waivers at some point during August (maximum of seven per day) even if they have no intention of trading any of them. Furthermore, many teams will place claims on players with absolutely no intention of acquiring them. They do this in order to block another organization from being able to trade for that player. This can get tricky, though, as the originating Club can choose to dump the player on the claiming Club along with the player's entire contract.

Ok, I'm not sure I've made it any clearer. The point of it all is that trades can and will be made during August. However, there are many more obstacles in the way.


Chris said...

What moves would you like to see?

Unknown said...


Thanks for the insight.

I do have a question regarding Maddux. Say he gets put on waivers, and gets claimed, does he have the option of not reporting and then he gets placed on a restricted list? or he can just block it?

I do not know how it would apply to the "no trade" clause.

Wazzel Sport's Humor said...

I'm not a Padres fan, but I'm sure Randy Myers comes to mind to many of an example of a team claiming a player to block another team (unfortunately for the Pads, the O's let him go and the Pads got stuck with his salary).

I do have a question regarding August waivers though, what are the rules regarding prospects that get traded? Are players on the 40-man roster the only ones subject to waivers? Is it only the 25-man roster? Could two teams swap players not on the 40-man without any problem?

Poolie said...

I have been a hardcore fan since 1967 and I have only one comment/request: the Pads should show some cojones and release at once Khalil Greene.
You'll never get anything but dead wood for him anyway.
Call up Stansberry for now as at least I guarantee that him he can hit better than 210 and at least he wont throw childish selfish hissy tantrums that hurt the team.

If Towers and you guys dont release him, or at least suspend him severely, it will be yet another disrespect to the fan and even more to the other non-selfish players on the team

Unknown said...

Paul, what do you think was the main reason the padres couldn't deal Maddux, or make any other significant deals at the deadline?

Leading up to the trading deadline I expected the team to make a deal which would give the fans some hope for 2009. Like most things that have happened this year it just didn't work out. Its going to take a lot of work between now and the beginning of next year to restore hope and faith to the padres fanbase.

Andrew Hicks said...

Thanks for the explanation. I finally understand trade waivers.

AztecAlum said...

Poolie - That is a pretty short-sighted comment thinking that they should 'release' Khalil Greene. Sure he has had a bad year but he finally shows some emotion (and bad judgement) and you want to send him packing? Of course his value is minimal right now, but that doesn't mean he won't be respectable next year and he still plays very defense (and is still a fan favorite).

Shizane said...

So, I'm curious as to what the waiver wire is exactly. Is it a website that every team has access to? Is there an official e-mail that is distributed to all clubs notifying everyone of the player being placed on waivers?

Thanks in advance for answering this question.

Cpt Top Off said...

Just an idea here - lets make a play for Rickie Weeks after the season ends. At this point I'm convinced all he needs is a change of scenery. He probably can be bought cheap and the club might be getting lightning in a bottle. If Antonelli pans out, Weeks could definitely play the OF (which might be his ultimate position anyhow). I still think he is a star in the making, but Milwaukee's patience is obviously waning.

field39 said...

Is there any truth to the rumor, that the Padres sent a gaggle of suits to the American Legion tournement, in Yountville.

Paul DePodesta said...


Great question. Players with no-trade clauses can block assignments made through the waiver process.

Paul DePodesta said...


Another good question. Trade waivers are only for 40-man roster players.

Paul DePodesta said...


Unfortunately, Stansberry also broke a bone in his hand on the same night in Portland.

Paul DePodesta said...


It is a bulletin (email form these days) that is transmitted to each club at the same time everyday. The players names are supposed to remain confidential, so only a handful of people per team receive the email.

Paul DePodesta said...

I've had a lot of comments asking my opinion of the other moves that have happened with other teams over the past few days. Per MLB rules, I'm not allowed to discuss players on other teams, so I haven't been publishing those comments. Sorry.

Also, as it relates to publishing comments in general... I publish nearly all comments that come in. The only ones that I don't either: a) ask me/comment about my career (though many of the comments have been much appreciated), b) ask me about players on other teams, c) use profanity, or d) rip some member of the Padres.

If you want to critize me or the organization in a somewhat professional/constructive way, it'll get posted. It always has to date. However, I won't post items that trash my colleagues. There are plenty of other places for that on the web.


Anonymous said...

How far apart are you and the Mooneyham camp? Are there still contact between sides or have contract talks become rock (School) hard place (offer).

Have our scouts been following his progress in Legion play? Have their reports differed from the original?

Steve Adler said...

This would seem like a great window in which we could attempt to claim some players. Of course this could just be wishful thinking, however it would be nice if we could pick up a couple guys that we could plug into the team this year and next.

Unknown said...

Could you clarify the rules if more than one team wants to claim a player?


mweldon said...

I am glad you guys stood your ground with Maddox. Don't take the Dodgers' scraps. If they want him, make them deal for him. He should pass through waivers and they may change their tune in a month.

And if they don't, then all the better that he retire as a Padre.

Unknown said...

I am the belief that a borderline prospect is better than no prospect at all. The Padres were put in this situation by Maddux, they have zero leverage... I am very disappointed in the Professor. The Padres have been good to him and viceversa. The Padres deserved better...

Editor said...

Again, thank you for letting us gaze into this process.

I recently read an interview with Grady Fuson, and apparently the team is still negotiating with Darnell and Kipnis. Can you maybe help explain the process(a little) regarding signing certain players after the draft. Does the team in a sense prioritize, and this year it just happened several picks taken earlier weren't of a higher priority after the draft ended? If it cannot be explained by prioritizing picks, does the lack of signings with players rounds 2 through 10 have something to do with eligibility, as players like Zornes, Kipnis, and Darnell each have one more year{but then again, Carroll signed early and has been playing for a while now}? Furthermore, could the delay be because the minors right now don't have a bounty of room for them, so you are trying to stagger the signings to prevent congestion in Eugene, AZL, and Fort Wayne?

Anonymous said...

Is it just me...or does it make too much sense to take a flyer on the just released Felipe Lopez? Greene is done for the year, and Lopez's ability to lead off, plus 2005 and 2006 numbers can't be ignored.

Unknown said...

Hey Paul, this question is off topic so I don't really plan on you posting it but I was wonder what the rules are for taking someone off the 40-man roster? If you could perhaps take the time to e-mail back the answer or even if you published the post and answered it, I'd greatly appreciate it. Thanks.

Tom said...

Hector, how does Maddux deserve ANY blame for this? He and the Padres negotiated the no-trade clause. Usually the player leaves some money on the table when that happens, and Maddux signed a reasonable deal instead of playing hardball. The Padres held an 11M option on him and he signed for 10M, essentially giving the Padres a 1M discount. Now you're blaming him for exercising his contractual rights? Does a car company have a right to blame you if you bring your car in for a warranty repair?

Gavin said...

Matthew, priority is given to the team with the worst record in the waived player's league. So if said player was in the NL, the worst team in the NL would get first stab, followed by 2nd-worst, etc etc. If all NL teams pass, the same process begins for the AL teams, worst to best.

Hector, regarding Maddux, this is something that the Padres agreed to while negotiating his current contract, and he probably left some money on the table in exchange for this right. So I don't think its fair to expect him to give in. IMO the enjoyment we will get watching a legend finish his career in SD has more value than whatever non-prospect we would have gotten in return anyhow.

Unknown said...

This is not the subject, but I would like to give my opinion on the dimensions at Petco Park. I say leave them as is.
It is part of having a home field advantage, and also an advantage in signing a pitcher.
One thing I like about low scoring games at Petco is that it feels like a playoff game.
If a player complains about the dimensions, trade him. This is our home.

Sakei said...


Quick question as reagards to the MLB rules of discussing other players. I understand why front office personnel such as yourself shouldn't be allowed to comment. OTOH you and Billy Beane are famous for MoneyBall, a national best seller where the two of you don't exactly mince words in discussing other players. Isn't a book a much worse case than posting on 'some blog'.

Also JP Riccardi is famous for his harsh comments on Adam Dunn this year as well as just plain insulting the Gil Meche contract in the past. Not only did he comment on other players but he flat out critized them. How was he not punished by MLB and what are these supposed penalities if you do comment on players?

Paul DePodesta said...


I'm not completely sure, because I haven't looked in a long time, but I don't think there are any quotes from me about non-Oakland A's players in Moneyball.

As it relates to JP, some action may very well have been taken, but I wouldn't know.

Wazzel Sport's Humor said...

If memory serves, all of the references to other "non-athletics" players were made by Lewis, not direct quotes. I remember Barry Bonds was discussed at some point in the book with high praise by the A's front office, but I don't think there were nay direct quotes. Just Lewis reporting what he'd heard. I'm not sure if that would count since there is no direct quote

Unknown said...

Gavin & Tom,

The Padres gave Maddux the 2 innings (he pitched 198) he needed to basically guarantee this year. Both sides have been amicable and classy.

I am not saying I am mad, just disappointed that he did not give the club more flexibility, and in return some nice prospects.

Sean said...

I think it is very cool and original that someone in a high position with a major league baseball team such as yourself is reaching out to the public through blogspot.

FLG said...


Could you please clarify how long a player can stay on the DL. Take the case of someone who has exhausted the 60-day DL and done his 30-day minor league rehab assignment. Can he continue on the DL if still hurt? Does it have to be a new injury?



FLG said...


Question on player options. If a player is on the 40-man roster and isn't called to the majors in a year, does he use an option by merely being on the 40-man roster for the full year.

Also, if you come off the 60 day DL and are optioned to AAA, does that consume an option?



GTH said...

Regarding Maddux I don't think the Professor has acted in an unprofessional manner. Considering the career he has had he gets to make a few conditions and it's not like he sprung this on the FO suddenly. If he only wants West Coast, then West Coast is what he gets. To me, he is worth keeping around. I think we have seen his influence on pitchers like Peavy and more recently Banks.

Paul, mostly I wanted to say thanks for the insight into this whole waiver claim. Obviously you can't comment on the Brian Giles situation but I will be watching closely (and crossing my fingers for Bay!).

My question involves the preseason predictions. This year I want to say the Padres front office predicted 89 wins. With the way the season has gone and the frustration fans have shown, does the FO plan to make another preseason prediction next season. To me this team is one year removed from a playoff game (163 game) and not much has changed other then a collection of players all having sub-par years in the same year. Out of the ashes we found Gerut and Banks who to me have been pleasant surprises.

This rambled a bit, sorry about. Keep up the great work. Keep the faith!

Ziola said...

How does a team win a claim? For example - I heard that a bunch of teams put in a claim for Huston Street. But ESPN's Buster Olney says a non-contender won the claim on Street and brief trade talks didn't go anywhere.

How did this particular team win the claim?

Paul DePodesta said...


It's very similar to the draft in that it goes in reverse order of record (however in this case in goes through your league first from bottom to top and then the other league from bottom to top).

REDSOX1 said...

In Major League Baseball How does a player get blocked from a trade? Is
there anyway that they can get unblocked? Is there anyway the Red Sox
could get rid of Julio
Lugo since he is a blocked player? Is there anyway that someone can
contact the GM of teams? If so how? Thank you (not in fantasy baseball
but real baseball).