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David Samson | Former Marlins Team President, MLB Insider

Amy Lawrence Show / Amy Lawrence
The Truth Network Radio
January 12, 2023 6:09 am

David Samson | Former Marlins Team President, MLB Insider

Amy Lawrence Show / Amy Lawrence

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January 12, 2023 6:09 am

Former Florida Marlins Team President and current MLB Insider David Samson joins the show to talk Carlos Correa, Rafael Devers, & more MLB Hot Stove!

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I'm Larry Mullins, host of the podcast, Your Weirdest Fears, the show that explores the odd things that make your heart stop. I am so scared of the Grinch. He is bad vibes. We talk to everyone from therapists to exterminators to lizard man. I was 25 when I actually got my tongue split.

I have one tattoo that covers my entire body. Listen and subscribe on the Odyssey app or wherever you get your podcasts from. Your playoffs, your Odyssey.

Get in the game and download the free Odyssey app today. We are pleased to welcome longtime Marlins president, Baseball Insider podcast host extraordinaire David P. Sampson to the show. And generally I jump in with a hard hitting question, but in order to kind of butter you up first, David, I will say Happy New Year. How are your holidays? How are you doing? Happy New Year.

Everything was great. I thought we were past that. I think when you get to double digits in January, I think it's too much. But that said, we haven't spoken, so Happy New Year and healthy New Year to you and yours. All right, well then gloves are off. Okay, let's go. Let's go toe to toe, David. So if you're in a front office, well, let's start.

I'm going to go each of the front offices that were involved with Korea. If you're in the Twins front office, how are you feeling right now about six years, two hundred million and everything that just happened? Well, I had the player last year and I was willing to give him two hundred and eighty five million dollars for ten years. And now I'm giving him at most two hundred and seventy over ten years and I control the last four years. So I feel pretty good about what deal I was able to do. I'm not so sure I'm happy that the player wanted to be here or I'm sure the player wanted to be here. But that said, we've got him and he's going to be a centerpiece to us winning. So if I'm the Twins, I'm very happy.

All right. So a guaranteed six year deal and a lot of money in terms of average annual value, but not the years that the Mets or Giants were willing to give. From the Mets perspective, if you're in the Mets front office and you see what it took to get him or get him back to Minneapolis, what's your reaction? I'm a little surprised if I'm the front office, because unless I was told the truth by Steve Cohen, I'm not sure I understand why we didn't get our player. While we initially offered three hundred and fifteen million dollars, we tried to renegotiate and it didn't happen. But then he only got two hundred million from the Twins and we offered one hundred and fifty seven. Why did my owner just offer another forty four million dollars, go two hundred and three, let's say, or two hundred and two million dollars and he would have been in New York? So in the front office, I would find it strange for Steve Cohen.

He had a change of heart. Maybe he realized that the other owners were quite unhappy with what his payroll was going to be. Maybe he was told, don't put your payroll in that area because the Dodgers, Yankees and Marlins are all upset about it. So I think there was a lot going on from the Mets standpoint. So I'm not at all surprised that he's not on the Mets. OK, so maybe this wasn't just about Correa, David. It was also about the astronomical figure, the numbers for his payroll. Had they signed Correa to the original deal?

I happen to believe that. And the silence coming out of the Mets organization, their simple 13 word statement, I think they put out that they didn't have an agreement with him and they wish him well in the future. I like it when teams say that because we used to say that, too, but we never meant it. We don't wish the player well when they choose someone else and not us or when we don't get the player we want or when we have to release a player or fire. We always do that when we fired our manager.

We wish him and his family well and thank them for their service. That's not how we ever felt firing a manager. We were despondent that we didn't win and had to fire the guy.

So that made me laugh. But but I think that if I'm the Mets, I'm trying to figure out whether or not, you know, Steve Cohen went too far. And from Steve Cohen standpoint, he has to figure out where he's going to live in the ownership ecosystem because everyone knew that he was going to spend like a drunken sailor. But I don't think they realized that his payroll would be so far above everyone else's. See why we love David Sampson, especially when he joins us live in the early morning hours. He's got no V chip.

He just kind of puts it out there into the stratosphere and entertains us, but also gives us good info. All right. So then completing the trifecta, the Giants, they barely had him. It was a couple of days. They started to balk and Cohen swoops in. So if you're the Giants watching this, what's your reaction? So I know Giants fans are upset.

I did a radio show locally in San Francisco yesterday and the fan base was disappointed. And I would say that no good decision is ever made by a front office based on emotion. And again, I would know because I made so many decisions based on emotion and they were all wrong.

Remember what happened here. They didn't get Aaron Judge and they felt disappointed, left at the altar. And all of a sudden they turned around and offered Korea this crazy deal of three hundred and fifty million dollars over 13 years. I feel like they dodged a bullet and they found a way. They found God during the physical and realized, wow, this sort of pivot that we did was really a knee jerk reaction to losing Judge to try to satisfy a fan base. That was so excited and lathered up about getting Aaron Judge.

And I think they realized that they ought not do that. So I think that it's going to work out very well for the Giants not getting Korea. However good he is, it's still going to work out for them, because remember, there's always another player and owners can forget that sometimes. But there's always another player. Maybe they'll bid for Otani next year. You never know. Yeah, there is that possibility.

A lot of buzz about him already. So then, David, let's just put you back in a front office. So you've given us kind of the perspectives of these three teams that were involved.

If it's you, how would you have handled this, physicals at all? I think that when you sign a free agent. So here's how it works. If you if it's your own player, you really know the player, you live with the player. When you're signing a player that you've never had, you've just seen him in the opposing dugout. You do a physical, you do blood work and urine work and you have the orthopedic surgeon look at him. You put him in the MRI tube and take pictures of every part of his body.

And then you have to calculate sort of your risk assessment and what your risk tolerance is. And if I know that he had an injury in 2014 that had not cropped up again and the doctors had cautioned me that there's future arthritis as an example. I've heard that with players or there's some fraying of the elbow ligament that maybe he's got a 32 year old elbow. We've heard that a lot.

But the players only 26. So there could be danger going forward. My view always was I'm going to worry about tomorrow later.

I'm going to worry about today now. But when you've got a long term deal, like a 10 year deal or longer, you do tend to be more concerned about what could happen or what the doctors are saying. And I think the Giants just got some cold feet. And I think the Mets, it was a different story. And I think the Twins did a deal that sort of guaranteed that they're not going to get totally screwed if he ends up with some sort of injury that the doctors had that is possible. So I think everybody ends up where they should in this deal, including Correa, by the way, who still gets 200 million dollars guaranteed. And if the Twins don't pick up the last four years of his deal, he'll be a free agent again at 34. And he can sign another two or three year deal if he's been healthy the whole time. Well, good.

I'm glad you made that point, because I said that on our last show. Hey, this is not necessarily a bad situation for him to be in. If it continues to not be a problem, he's still only 34.

And if he's productive, he could sign another deal that would be guaranteed moving forward at that age. It's After Hours with Amy Lawrence on CBS Sports Radio, longtime Marlins president and baseball analyst and podcast host Nothing Personal with David Sampson here on the show this morning. So we were just also letting fans hear from Rafael Devers.

I like him. He's a great ambassador for baseball, obviously homegrown for the Red Sox. But I was asking the question of whether or not this is enough to satisfy Sox fans who are kind of disgruntled over the number of players who've left. So the mass exodus almost of the Stars. So your perspective, kind of big picture with the Red Sox.

Is this enough? Well, big picture. When you sign your own player back, one of the things that fan bases get wrong, the Yankees aren't better this year than last year. They have the same Aaron Judge. They're just paying him more. They didn't add to their team.

They just took their same team in theory and paid more. And the question is, could Aaron Judge have a better season than he had last season? You look at Rafael Devers and you have to make choices when you run a team. Even the Red Sox do. They had Mookie Betts and they didn't sign him long term. They had Bogart. They didn't sign him long term.

They chose to get into bed with Devers. And what a great player he is. But I sort of worry about his long term. I worry about the projection of his body and how long he can stay in the infield and stay productive. Having the D.H. in all baseball is obviously helpful because I think that these players signing these deals at this age for this amount of time, they're all going to be DHS by the end at best. You know, just think about Albert Pujols as an example. Or Miguel Cabrera as an example.

It's very hard to be productive later in your career, late in your 30s. It just doesn't work that way in baseball much anymore. And from the Red Sox standpoint, if you're a fan, man, you've gotten four World Series. There's not a fan base out there since 2004. Maybe the Giants with three in 10, 12 and 14.

But who else do you want to be other than a Red Sox fan for the past almost 20 years? They've really done well. But as far as this team is concerned in this division, they've added, you know, some pitching. They brought in Justin Turner to replace J.D. Martinez. They lost Nathan Evaldi. They got a new closer, Kenley Jansen. What does it all add up to? My guess is at best a third place finish in the A.L. East. Definitely is a competitive division. All right.

Shifting quickly on you, just because I love to do that, try to get you off your game. But that rarely ever happens, actually. I don't know that it's ever happened.

Trevor Bauer was designated for assignment by the Dodgers, which means he would soon be available. If you're a GM or a president, do you touch him? Do you even think about bringing him on board? Well, I think about everything, but no. So here's the question that front offices have. What do you say during the press conference? So just think about that for one second. Let's talk about it.

You go, you walk into the room, you're presenting a uniform or you just do it as a statement. But what are you saying to the press when you signed Trevor Bauer? You're just saying, listen, he went through the process. He served his suspension and now we're giving him a second chance.

But there's zero tolerance. Don't forget, this is the same player who threw the ball into center field when Terry Francona, the most respected manager in baseball, went to take him out of the game. This is somebody who's always been on his own program, always been a selfish player, never been popular in the clubhouse, always been someone where the juice is not worth the squeeze, even when he's been as good as he's been later in his career. But he hasn't pitched in well over a year. So there's just so many negatives about signing him. The positive is that there's so much a lack of pitching around baseball that if you can get a good starter, you want it. But I just don't think any owner right now can come up with what to say to their fan base. That would possibly be good enough to excuse getting him and what you would say to your existing players. So I do not think he will pitch another inning in Major League Baseball. I got to hand it to you, David. I never did think about it from the jump with the opening press conference. But you're right, how awkward and uncomfortable would that be and the tone that it would set? Because there isn't anything you can say other than, hey, we're really hoping he's a good pitcher and can help us win baseball games, which rings hollow. All right, one more before I let you go.

And I'll just leave it wide open for you. What is a storyline from this hot stove that we haven't talked about that floats your boat? Well, I think the number one story for me and I'm definitely biased because I spent my whole career there in the National League East. Look at a team like the Braves, who took all their young players and locked them up into long term deals. They won a World Series. They exchanged Freddie Preeman for Matt Olson last year. Then they get the Mets who are all of a sudden acting like the Yankees or even the Yankees on steroids. And don't forget about the Phillies, a team that went to the World Series and brought in Trey Turner. And the way it works in baseball, only one of those teams is going to win a division.

Maybe they'll all get in the playoffs, but one of them is going to lose in the wildcard round. And so somebody is going to be really unhappy in only a matter of nine months from now. And so we're talking about the gestation of a human being.

And that goes fast for those of us who've had children. Somebody is going to be miserable come October in that division. And that's the thing about the off season. Winning the off season is not very helpful because I've done that, too. And it's led to a disastrous season in season. The key is winning in October. And by definition, somebody is going to be losing in October or maybe not even get to October.

And that's going to be the storyline of the season. Well, think about it. Of course. One more, Amy.

Sorry. While I have you while I'm awake. If you thought the Aaron Judge sweet steaks were exciting or you remember Carla Palooza from back in the day when he came to the Yankees as a free agent to show.

Hey, Otani, free agent. It is going to be outstanding. And maybe I'll take up permanent residence at five o'clock in the morning with you because they're going to be teams lathering themselves, trying to figure out how to find a guy who can be at the top of their rotation and in the middle of their lineup. Crazy. I was only going to say that there were two teams in the NL East that won one hundred and one games and neither one ended up in the World Series.

So, yeah, a very competitive division. But the show, hey, that is on the horizon. Oh, there's so many other things that I could ask you. So we'll talk again before pitchers and catchers report. But find David on Twitter at David P. Sampson, S.A.M. S.O.N. He's got the nothing personal podcast, which is daily. You can see him on CBS Sports HQ, but really he brings his best stuff for us. A longtime Marlins president who is so awake at this hour.

I don't understand it, but it works for me. Thank you, David. Happy New Year, Amy. Happy New Year to you. You're a goof.

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Whisper: medium.en / 2023-01-12 09:09:22 / 2023-01-12 09:16:37 / 7

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