Rockies news and links for Monday, August 31, 2020 On the cusp of a crucial month of negotiations on a post-Brexit trade deal between the European Union and the U.K., France has lambasted British Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s government for what it sees as deliberate stalling and for harboring unreasonable expectations. The Dodgers didn't obtain a top starting pitcher for the playoffs. Meanwhile, the Padres picked up nine players, including ace Mike Clevinger.
Rockies trade for Orioles reliever Mychal Givens | Purple Row
This news of the Rockies acquiring RHP Mychal Givens hit social media right before game time yesterday. Shortly after the news broke, we learned that the Rockies had traded away Tyler Nevin and Terrin Vavra and a player to be named later to complete the deal.
Givens’ role in the bullpen is still a big unknown. Many expected the Rockies to seek out a left-handed relief pitcher before the trade deadline, as discussed in yesterday’s Rockpile. Is is still possible that Rockies are looking to make some more trades before today’s deadline? I’m sure we’ll find out soon enough. Is it possible they will try and seek out some offensive upgrades as well?
I know despite carrying three catchers right now the Rockies could really use some improvement in that specific position. Unfortunately, the Padres acquired Jason Castro and Austin Nola, so it looks like there might be very few trade options left for the Rockies. The Padres had a very busy weekend filled with quite a few trades.
Padres acquiring catcher Jason Castro from Angels, sources tell The Athletic.
Rockies’ offense a no-show while Padres hit 5 homers en route to 13-2 shellacking | The Denver Post ($)
Speaking of the Padres, yesterday’s game was a lopsided affair. The Rockies offense has been lacking and the Padres, well, has not. When asked about the offense, General Manager Jeff Bridich said, “I think that offensively, there are some better days ahead.”
You just know they’re going to hit, right?
And, if you didn’t look closely at the schedule, the series isn’t over yet. This four game set isn’t a traditional weekend or mid-week affair. Tonight’s series finale against the Padres will be broadcast on ESPN in addition to ATTSNRM and has a later, West Coast-like game time of 7:40pm.
How MLB Travel Directors Control Chaos at the Trade Deadline | Sports Illustrated
With all this talk about trades, we know things are very different this year. There are very strict travel regulations in place this season due to COVID-19. In a normal season it would be as easy as getting the player on the next commercial flight to meet up with his new team, but the new regulations make that less than ideal.
Scott Boras has told owners that if any of the players he represents are traded, he is offering a private jet to transport them to their new team. Unfortunately, Scott Boras only represents a small amount of players in the league. Teams will have to see if they can arrange for private jets or car services to transport players, but if not, the commercial route might be the only option.
In addition to overcoming travel hurdles, players arriving and joining a new team will have an extra layer of intake testing for COVID-19. So, despite a flurry of trades yesterday, and possibly today, players might not be able to get to their new teams as quickly and efficiently as they would like.
This is just another way that 2020 is strange and will be remembered for years to come.
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In case you needed another visual reminder of #NolanBeingNolan to start your week…
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Author: Becca Guillen
France accuses UK of stalling in post-Brexit trade talks
PARIS (AP) – On the cusp of a crucial month of negotiations on a post-Brexit trade deal between the European Union and the U.K., France has lambasted British Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s government for what it sees as deliberate stalling and for harboring unreasonable expectations.
The 27-nation EU and the U.K. remain deadlocked in their talks on future trade ties after a transitional divorce period ends on Dec. 31. That has raised concerns that no agreement will be in place in time and that tariffs and other impediments to trade will be imposed on Jan. 1.
“Negotiations are not advancing, because of the intransigent and unrealistic attitude of the United Kingdom,” French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian told his nation’s ambassadors Monday in Paris.
His comments underscored the recent pessimistic tone of the EU’s chief negotiator, Michel Barnier, who has said the talks seem to be moving backward.
Britain left the EU on Jan. 31 but both sides hoped that a chaotic Brexit departure could be avoided by striking a comprehensive trade deal during the 11-month transition period.
Both sides say September will be a crucial month in the discussions. The EU, for its part, insists that the talks conclude before November to allow time for parliamentary approval and legal vetting of the trade deal.
And Le Drian insisted that the 27 EU nations won’t buckle under pressure from London.
“On Brexit, we always showed unity and proved wrong those who saw signs of an overall implosion of Europe,” he said. “It is in staying united that we can stick to our line of a global accord.”
The main differences appear to center on rules for state aid for businesses and on fisheries.
The EU is insisting on a “level-playing field” for companies from both sides, so British firms can’t undercut EU firms by disregarding stringent EU rules on environment or workplace and social standards. The U.K. is also vexed by EU demands for long-term access to British fishing waters.
Britain accuses the bloc of making demands that it has not imposed on other countries it has free trade deals with, such as Canada.
“The EU is still insisting not only that we must accept continuity with EU state aid and fisheries policy, but also that this must be agreed before any further substantive work can be done in any other area of the negotiation, including on legal texts, making it unnecessarily difficult to make progress,” the U.K. government said.
Both sides say they want to avoid a “no-deal” scenario and want their divorce not to impede cooperation in the fields of defense, security and fighting crime.
The next round of talks between Barnier and his British counterpart, David Frost, begins in London on Sept. 7.
Casert reported from Brussels. Jill Lawless in London and Geir Moulson in Berlin contributed.
Follow all AP news about British politics and Brexit at https://apnews.com/Brexit.
Copyright © 2020 The Washington Times, LLC.
Author: The Washington Times http://www.washingtontimes.com
Hernández: Dodgers again defer to process at trade deadline rather than acquire a starter
So, it’s back to Walker Buehler and Clayton Kershaw again, and that’s assuming the blister on Buehler’s pitching hand doesn’t turn him into a harder-throwing version of Rich Hill. As for the remainder of the Dodgers’ postseason rotation, that still has to be sorted out.
The trade deadline expired Monday without the Dodgers improving their suspect pitching or any other part of their roster. If anything, they temporarily weakened themselves by trading surplus starter Ross Stripling to the Toronto Blue Jays for a couple of prospects to be named later.
Their inactivity was completely on brand.
Think of how they don’t overcommit to any deal, unless it’s a mid-level free-agent contract that won’t seriously hurt them if the player fails to perform. This isn’t an organization that takes major gambles.
In a season in which a shameless cash grab by Major League Baseball bastardized an already questionable postseason format, there was virtually no chance the Dodgers would solve a short-term problem by trading coveted prospects.
“It’s certainly a factor,” president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman said. “It can’t not be.”
The playoffs will have an extra round this year, with the first round a three-game series.
“I definitely think it introduces more variance,” Friedman said.
If the three-game series is an argument against paying the typical trade-deadline surcharge for reinforcements, it’s also a reason to do what the second-place San Diego Padres did.
The shorter the series, the more valuable a frontline starting pitcher becomes, and the Padres obtained such a starter in Mike Clevinger from the Cleveland Indians.
The Padres have what is arguably the best farm system in baseball, and they used their prospect capital to acquire nine players in five trades in the two days leading up to the deadline.
October will determine which approach was right — the Dodgers’ or the Padres’. This is a results-oriented business, after all.
In recent years, many front offices have talked about the importance of remaining process-oriented, a neat carnival trick to skirt responsibility when a season ends without a championship.
That isn’t to say organizational philosophies aren’t important. Obviously, they are.
The Dodgers have won seven consecutive division championships. They have a balanced roster and well-stocked minor league system that ensures they will remain competitive for the foreseeable future.
They owe this to the principles to which they have adhered since Friedman was hired to run their baseball operations department.
But trophies aren’t awarded to the team with the best roster-building methodology. Cities don’t stage parades for teams that exercised the most discipline at trade deadlines.
Ultimately, a process is worth as much as the number of championships it delivers. So far, Friedman’s hasn’t won any.
Which could explain the adjustment Friedman made before spring training when he executed his first nine-figure investment.
At the time of his trade from the Red Sox, Mookie Betts technically cost the Dodgers only the outfielder’s $27-million salary, half of the $96 million David Price was owed over the next three seasons and three prospects. But the hope from the start was to sign Betts to a new contract, which the Dodgers did by extending his deal by 12 years for $365 million.
The Dodgers were one of the highest-scoring teams in baseball last year. They are again this year, but they now have in Betts their best hitter since Hanley Ramirez in 2013. There’s no way to entirely safeguard against a lineup disappearing in the postseason, but a hitter of Betts’ caliber is as close as it comes.
With a championship offense in place, the team’s World Series window is about as wide open as it’s been over the last three decades. Ordinarily, the opportunity would call for them to be more aggressive than usual at the trade deadline to improve the team’s pitching, perhaps to where they would be willing to overpay in ways Friedman has avoided in the past. But this isn’t an ordinary season. The expanded playoffs aren’t the only consideration, as there’s still a possibility the season could be shut down because of a COVID-19 outbreak.
“I think October looks different this year than it has in any other year,” Friedman said.
Friedman didn’t think that significantly affected what he did or didn’t do, but he conceded, “Of course, it’s something that’s at least on our minds.”
The result is the Dodgers will enter the postseason counting on Buehler and Kershaw to be dominant. They will hope for a capable playoff starter or two to emerge from a group that includes the still-injured Alex Wood, inconsistent Julio Urias, and inexperienced Dustin May and Tony Gonsolin.
This was the safe choice. This didn’t compromise their future.
But if the Dodgers don’t ever win a World Series under Friedman, this will be viewed in hindsight as one of the many opportunities they wasted by not pushing all in. They will wish they were as bold as the Padres.
Author: Dylan Hernández