Goatriders of the Apocalypse

The Player to be Named Later

Just to clear up any misconceptions about the PTNL rule, I thought I'd post it directly so we'll know how it works should that be what Rich Hill gets traded for.

According to a handful of sources: The "player to be named later" (PTBNL) is generally used to postpone a trade's final conditions or terms. This is often done for two reasons. First, the team receiving the PTBNL might not be certain which position they want to fill, so this type of deal gives them more time to figure it out. Second, this type of arrangement gives the team receiving the PTBNL more time to evaluate the available talent on the other team. When one of these PTBNL transactions occurs, the negotiating teams usually agree on a list of 5-10 players (typically minor leaguers) that the PTBNL will ultimately be chosen from. If the teams can't agree on who the player will be, then they will agree on a price to be paid instead of a player. There are two rules to a PTBNL transaction. The deal must close within a six-month time frame following the conclusion of the rest of the trade, and the player must change leagues.

Just for clarifaction to what HC was saying in the shout box ... the list does not change based on Rich Hill's production.  If Rich Hill doesn't make it out of Spring Training in Baltimore, the Cubs list of players do not change.  if Hill becomes the Cy Young of the American League, the list of players the Cubs can pursue does not change, either.

The list of players is decided before the trade is completed and the Cubs can choose from those guys at any point.  Should they not choose anybody, they get cash.

Them's the rules, HC.  The PTNL is not performance-based.


Rob Neyer of ESPN "Sometimes, at the time of the deal the team receiving the player will provide the other club a list of minor leaguers, and later the club will have their pick of the players on that list. This list is negotiated at the time of the trade." (emphasis mine)
Biz of Baseball which says "At the time of a trade, clubs sometimes agree on a list of players from which the player to be named will be selected. They also may agree on an amount of money to be exchanged in lieu of a player."

I never said the list

I never said the list changes. But thanks for your wisdom and a non-needed correction all powerful Oz

You said "if the deal goes

You said "if the deal goes through, the player the cubs get will depend on how well Rich Hill plays in Baltimore "

That's just not the way the rules work. The rule is "This is often done for two reasons. First, the team receiving the PTBNL might not be certain which position they want to fill, so this type of deal gives them more time to figure it out." If you weren't wrong, I wouldn't have corrected you. I'll be sure to ignore your mistakes in the future though since it annoys you.

Its great that you pull

Its great that you pull baseball rules from Wikipedia, but you act as though the Cubs are the only team that gets any time to make a decision here. The trade can be completed up to 6 months later, which would give both teams plenty of time to evaluate how Hill plays. Usually the teams put together their list of players, but once the cubs go to choose a player they don't just get whoever they pick - the teams have to agree. As both teams evaluate Hill's performance the cubs will be watching the 5-10 guys on their list to pick from and so too will the Orioles. The time is given to complete the deal so that both sides can evaluate the players involved, and in the end both parties will have to agree on the PTBNL that is ultimately chosen. So without a doubt, Rich Hill's performance along with the performance of the players on the list, will decide who the cubs get if the deal is even made. I have every reason to believe that the cubs could get more for Hill or at least more teams involved in the process.

HC. Buddy. Once the teams

HC. Buddy. Once the teams agree on 5-10 players, the Cubs get to pick any of those 5-10 players at any point during the process. If Rich Hill gets released in April, the Cubs still have their pick of 5-10. Thems the rules.

And if that's not the rules, evidence - any evidence at all - would go a long way toward shutting me up and leaving you alone about it.

I have to show evidence but

I have to show evidence but everything you say is golden? So by your logic the cubs can trade Hill to the Orioles and then sit back and choose any of the 10 players on the list that they so choose since the decision is up to them and they can make the deal whenever they want. Gee 6 months down the road I think that even I, without the help of your wisdom, could choose the player that played the best for the season. I clearly see how that benefits the Orioles, where they get a player they have no idea what to expect and the cubs get 6 months to take any player off the list they want without the Orioles having to agree. Show me your evidence from Wikipedia Great and Powerful Oz, but be sure to only use the parts that help your argument.

Actually I found a source -

Actually I found a source - not wikipedia, by the way - and posted it. If I couldn't find a source, or evidence, I would be sitting here with my dick in my hand.

So yes. You have to show evidence. Surely you have heard it or read it somewhere - just find it, post a link, and I'll happily apologize and retract my obviously wrong factually-based opinion that the Cubs can choose at any point any of the 5-10 players agreed-upon before the Rich Hill trade would be completed without worry or concern of the performance of Hill.

I could care less if you

I could care less if you apologize. I never said anything wrong in the first place. The deal wouldn't be completed with a player to be named later if Rich Hill's performance really didn't matter. Also I haven't seen any evidence showing that the cubs can send Rich Hill to the Orioles and then wait back 6 months and choose the player that performs best on their list even if Hill doesn't make their team out of spring training. So obviously Rich Hill's performance matters in this trade.



Here's mine, from multiple sources:

"When one of these PTBNL transactions occurs, the negotiating teams usually agree on a list of 5-10 players (typically minor leaguers) that the PTBNL will ultimately be chosen from. If the teams can't agree on who the player will be, then they will agree on a price to be paid instead of a player."

"Sometimes, at the time of the deal the team receiving the player will provide the other club a list of minor leaguers, and later the club will have their pick of the players on that list. This list is negotiated at the time of the trade."

I don't dictate the rules of

I don't dictate the rules of baseball, I just try to report them accurately. I get the feeling that you think we've been busting your balls a lot around here. As I said the other day, I truly value and appreciate your contributions to the site - at the very least, you drive debate, and at the most you provide a fresh and alternative perspective on a lot of things that people like me have very strong opinions about.

If you don't like me correcting you when you make a mistake - and your concept of "the Cubs can choose from different players on the list based on how Hill performs" is very much mistaken - then you should be sure that what you are Stating as Fact IS a fact.

But what you don't need to do is get sarcastic and confrontational, calling me "Great and Powerful Oz." As much as I appreciate the contributions you've been making, you don't need to come here and post if you are going to act like a dick.

I'm not going to take every

I'm not going to take every word you say as fact, its that simple. I only said that Rich Hill's performance will help to determine the player the team gets in return. Thats pretty basic. If you disagree thats up to you, I could care less. I honestly think you need to take it down a notch man. You and everyone else sits on this site just waiting to pounce and argue with someone about something all day long. Your opinion is your opinion, but its nothing more than that.

Look I'm not here to preach to anyone and I'm not going to just throw out BS information to mislead your congregation either. I'm a fan of the game of baseball. I enjoy hearing what other people have to say about the team and the game, but I'm not here to change anyone's opinion about anything. I'm also not here to be talked-down to. If you feel I was confrontational, then you're probably 100% correct, and I apologize. But I would have to say that 7 shouts and 1 post later to argue with what I said is just as confrontational, especially after you mention my name in every other sentence. I like this site and I enjoy talking to you and nearly everyone I've ran into here. If you think I'm a dick and want me to go elsewhere that can be done without a problem. In either case, if you want to talk and act like anyone else on this site, then I suggest you stop thinking & acting like your above everyone first.

Harry, I feel your pain. I'm


I feel your pain. I'm a longtime and loyal GROTA reader who, a short time ago, posted my first comments regarding a posting. I was immediately ridiculed and basically told to go elsewhere if I didn't like it. It's unfortunate that some who run this site have such thin skin and can't accept being challenged or criticized. Readership of GROTA may be on the rise but, quite unfortunately, the good will and sense of community seems to be disintegrating. Maybe with the increasing readership some of the GROTA staff are getting a little too big for their proverbial britches.

I'm reminded of law school and the absolute dorks who, at the slightest and most objective challenge to their given stance on an issue, lost all sense of reason and converted the discussion into a series of patronizing, thinly-veiled personal attacks. Might we have some law students in our midst? Wouldn't surprise me in the least.

Oh well, it's probably time to turn in my GROTA membership card and look for another forum where one can speak their minds freely without fear of being spoken to like a child. There are lots of up-and-coming Cubs blogs, as well as several high-quality ones that are well-established and have a more welcoming attitude. You know, kinda the way GROTA used to be. Sigh.

Its unfortunate that you've

Its unfortunate that you've experienced what you have here, but I am in no way trying to start trouble or lead a revolt. I am pretty much the new guy here, as I've only been a member of this site for a little over a month now. I hold the belief, that with or without this site I will continue to discuss, enjoy, and learn about the cubs and major league baseball in any way I can. I know little about the history or staff of this site, and to be perfectly honest neither would have brought me to the site in the first place. I simply enjoy talking baseball with anyone that is genuinely interested in the game, and fellow fans are usually the easiest to relate and talk with. My suggestion to you, would be to not take statements personally made by those that don't know you personally. Many on this site do hold very strong opinions, but as far as opinions go we're all created equally. It can be tough to sit here and try to take continual jabs from everyone, but that is the other readers' right as long as they can stick to the point and not turn it into a personal attack. In my view, this site should value its readers even if they don't value their opinions, as that is the only way that readership will continue to increase over time.

This is the thread you

This is the thread you posted in, cfowen: http://www.goatriders.org/node/3055

Where were you ridiculed or told to go elsewhere?

Generally, cfowen, my

Generally, cfowen, my perspective is pretty simple. Don't make it personal, don't name call. You're coming in and getting behind somebody who, frustrated that I have regularly disagreed with him of late, has begun resorting to sarcastic name-calling.

You, on the other hand, have demonstrated 1) that you are too impatient to handle reading TWO articles in a short span on a topic you don't care about and 2) that you are so thin-skinned that when I JOKINGLY said I would write a third article because you'd complained, you took it as me "ridiculing" you and telling you to "go elsewhere."

If anything hurts an online community, it's thin-skinned complainers.

All next week, we'll have a series on blogging in memory of you. Every day, another article about blogs.

Kurt I'm not frustrated that

Kurt I'm not frustrated that you disagree with me. I could care less what you do, look past the end of your own nose and maybe you'll see that. I call you the great and powerful Oz because thats what you act like, whether anyone else has said it or not. I don't come here looking for a professor to talk down-to me like I am their student below them - I already pay to go to classes where real professors do that, so I don't need you to. Its funny to sit here and listen to Professor Kurt tell everyone else not to make it personal and do personal attacks in the very same post that they are attacking someone. Whenever it is that you're able to get over yourself, soon after you'll probably have a lot easier time talking to others.

Harry, did I attack you? If

Harry, did I attack you? If so, what did I say? What names did I call you? You remind me of me when I was your age.

Anyway, my consistent rule is that if you strongly disagree with somebody, attack the idea, not the person. When you were at your worst, you were acting like a dick, I did not say "Harry, you are a dick." I said you were acting like one. I don't think you ARE a dick. But like everybody else you are very capable of ACTING like one, and today you absolutely have been.

Another rule that we try to enforce here: if somebody is wrong, it's not enough to tell them that. You've got to be able to back up your opinions. What you said about Hill and the Cubs getting a player of a different value based on his performance contradicts what I know about that kind of trade. I provided evidence about what *I* know about it. I simply asked you to show me yours. If you'd done it sooner, this wouldn't have gotten so ugly.

I'm not sure if you've noticed by now, but I write here pretty much every day. Every single day, I say things that people can argue, contradict, shoot down, and disagree with. More often than not, somebody does. I'm not so thin-skinned as to call them "professors" or "the Great Oz" or whatever other ridiculous name you have for me. But here's the point - if you have a blog in which you express an opinion, there will always be people who tell you that yours is wrong. It comes with the territory.

In this case, regarding "seeing past your own nose" and "getting over yourself," I think you should turn it a little introspective there, Harry. If you can't handle one person disagreeing with you or telling you that you're wrong, I worry for you when you get out into the real world, and for when you express your opinions in other forums.

But what I said earlier is true. If you don't like me, or if you don't like it when I disagree with you, or contradict you, or tell you when I think you're wrong, then understand that I'm not forcing you at gunpoint to frequent this blog. I value your contributions, I appreciate your passion, but you need to understand that there will ALWAYS be disagreements, there will ALWAYS be arguments, and sometimes those arguments WILL go on too long. Sorry if you don't like it.

Thats all incredibly

Thats all incredibly inspiring, I might climb a mountain now. But, I was referring to you talking to the other guy and preaching to him right before you blast him at the end. Practice what you preach. Re-read that long schpeel there that you just wrote - do you do half of those things? Also I'm sorry but you're no older than I am, if I were to wager a guess on that one - but I won't how old are you? You've done little to prove anything other than the fact that you like to argue and that you're an excellent name-dropper. The same sources are available to the both of us and everything I have read to this point has yet to clear a thing up, even what you were so kind to have posted with your good deeds. The fact of the matter is that the player to be named later is a gray area of the game, little is known except what has happened in the past. There are two rules that we can agree on, but after that the whole idea is little less clear. We can agree or disagree all day long, but not today or any day am I going to be talked-down to by you. Do you honestly expect everyone else to continually sit here and take jabs from you and take the high road while you live by a different set of rules than what is expected from everyone else? Hold your breath waiting for that one.

I don't know how often I can

I don't know how often I can say "I appreciate your contributions" before you accept that I'm not taking jabs at you, and I'm not sure how you can tell me to stop talking down to you when you have been the one with the incredibly sarcastic, confrontational tone. But I guess we'll go back to one of the first things I said to you today. I'll be sure to ignore your mistakes in the future since it annoys you to be corrected.

EMails I've gotten about this situation from readers who wish to remain anonymous:

"Gee, I'd post and ask HarryCarry if he's taking classes in junior high, but I guess that would be a little personal.
I've noticed from day one with him that he has too much time on his hands and that he thinks an awful lot of his opinions. "

"He needs his own blog."

If you or anyone else would

If you or anyone else would like to know personal information about my education feel free to ask. It has little to do with anything, but I have nothing to hide. I can send diplomas, passports, or fingerprints - you know any evidence you might need in the proceedings Your Honor. Readers' opinions are readers' opinions, I'm not here to change any of them. The fact of the matter is that no one on this site has any idea who I am, but at the same time everyone seems to know everything about me. So again, you or anyone else assume of me what you will, but its really not that hard to ask. I won't be launching my own blog anytime soon either, sorry to disappoint, I'm not really sure if that comment was a compliment or an insult.

Look, Kurt, i'm not trying

Look, Kurt, i'm not trying to start a personal argument with you or anyone else on this forum. As one can see, my first posting you linked to was posted with respect. I was merely expressing my opinion. Your response was sarcastic and, in my personal opinion, an attempt to be somewhat demeaning.

Today I read your exchange with Harry Caray and it struck a chord. Therefore, I once again expressed my personal opinion as it was clear to me that you were talking to him like a child. I felt bad for him and wanted to share with him (and anyone else who wanted to read my comments) my two cents.

I believe anyone with a modicum of objectivity can see that you were, for lack of a better term, a patronizing jerk to HC. That's unfortunate as I, as stated before, have been a loyal GROTA reader. On numerous occasions, in fact, I have shared this website with fellow friends and family who are true Cubs fans. In other words, i'm a good customer. No one likes being treated poorly in their favorite establishments. And I consider GROTA one of my very favorite places on the internet. It's a shame that all of this childish banter had to take place.

Was my shot-in-the-dark comment about law school correct? Just curious.

Your opinion was that

Your opinion was that because we posted two times on a subject you didn't care about, you thought we were acting excessive. I guess you could say that that struck a chord with ME.

In the case of how you sharing your "two cents," you described a situation which you completely blew out of proportion as I neither invited you to go elsewhere nor did I mock you. But if joking that I would post a third article about blogging was upsetting to you, I can only remind you that, among other things, this is a humor site.

The patronizing jerk that I am, we will have a 5 part series this week about blogging. And this time I'm not kidding.

P.S. Dork yes, law school no. I just don't deal well with people who clearly act as if they have excessively thin skin and whine unnecessarily about ridiculous things like two posts in two days on a topic they don't care about. It's the same thing as when one of our readers voices a complaint about one of our writers. If you don't like somebody's opinions, don't read their posts. I've got absolutely no interest in satisfying people who can't exercise judgment in skipping a topic they don't care for, as opposed to complaining about it

I never said you were

I never said you were "acting excessive" (sic). I merely expressed an opinion about the types of articles I like to read on GROTA and those that I do not.

It's clear from your countless postings on this thread that this is, as you stated, a "humor site." Thanks for a good chuckle, Kurt.

Among other things, yes.

Among other things, yes. Then again, I'm responding to somebody who said much earlier today that it was "time to turn in my GROTA membership card and look for another forum" etc. etc. In spite of that, thanks for coming back and being one of our biggest fans.

Check again, Kurt. I said

Check again, Kurt. I said "...it's probably time to turn in my GROTA membership card..." Emphasis on the word "probably." It's a subtle but important distinction.

Keep those jokes coming, buddy! You're hysterical.

Loooooooooooooooooooove the blogging article today. Can't wait for parts 1-4. Yawn. Kurt.

To paraphrase Gene Lasker,

To paraphrase Gene Lasker, I'm glad you get to read me.

I only wish it were better

I only wish it were better written, Kurt. Keep practicing. And, above all things, keep those jokes coming!

And that is actually the

And that is actually the really funny part. If you don't like how I write, or my kind of humor, how exactly am *I* suffering from *you* reading this blog? Isn't that like volunteering to stick a fork in a light socket, complaining about the shock, and then doing it again repeatedly?

I never made any comments

I never made any comments about "[you] suffering from [my] reading this blog." Not really sure how you came to that conclusion, Kurt.

This is going nowhere.

Let. It. Go.

Actually you did when you

Actually you did when you complained about the content and when you implied that I'm not funny.

I guess my point is that if there's a blog out there written by somebody who isn't funny or compelling in any way, I don't read the blog. You've made it clear the last few days that you don't find me funny or compelling, and yet here you are. They have a word for that: masochistic.

It's pretty simple, really. If you don't like the topics I write about - or the style of my writing - then don't read them. But if you whine and complain because you don't like what we're doing or saying, then I will grudge post you all day long.

Also I found little to

Also I found little to support that the cubs have free reign in terms of using the full 6 months time or that they can choose anyone from the list without the teams agreeing on that player at the time he is chosen. The commissioner's office must also sign off on any deal the teams look to complete, so I wouldn't necessarily say that the cubs can choose any player they want without it being approved. Nearly everything I have found on the matter is extremely vague and uses alot of "sometimes" and "usuallys" to describe the terms of how a PTBNL works. As far as where I have heard that the player the cubs will receive depends on Hill's performance, that actually comes from a couple different sources: mlbtraderumors.com mentions this fact, as do both of the sports writers whose articles are linked to the post, and I have also heard the same things said on ESPN during their HotStove coverage as well.

I have found 2 rules to be consistent throughout all sources; there is a 6 month window to complete the deal & the player being traded (Rich Hill in this case) must change leagues. Historically there have been instances where the teams can't agree on a PTBNL and the player traded has been returned to their original team. There are also cases of the team accepting cash instead.

"little to support" = every

"little to support" = every single document written about the topic. Harry, just say you've got nothin'. It's pretty clear that you don't. Actually, strike that, you have something.

The MLB Trade Rumors thing is interesting ... but you will be happy to know that I have EMailed the writer of that website, along with Rob Neyer and MLB Trade Rumor's source on the story for a confirmation about how the rule works. But I'll give you credit, HC, at least you didn't pull it out of thin air, you had a source.

I don't come on here to make

I don't come on here to make things up. It only makes sense, whether you think so or not, that the better Hill plays for Baltimore the better player the cubs will be able to get for him off of that list. Any trade that is going to be approved by MLB has to be somewhere near a fair or level deal, regardless of the players that made the list. The only point I was making is that if Hill goes over to the O's and plays well the team will have a better chance of getting something respectable in return later. Its not a performance-based swap of players, but Hill's performance will certainly be taken into account before a deal is likely to be completed.

And seriously, I have looked and found nothing concrete citing any official rules other than the 2 we both already stated to describe the process of a PTBNL. Rulebooks don't use uncertain terms like, "usually", "typically", and "sometimes" to explain how something works, most of what I've seen are statements about prior deals in past years. The problem is that using internet search engines to look up topics such as this usually returns anything that has been discussed on the topic. Case in point, go google PTBNL and the post that you just put up today will be in the top 5 returns, and as we both know that what you posted earlier today did very little to clear up the actual rules in this process.

No, you're right. You read

No, you're right. You read it somewhere, that somewhere had cited a credible source - a Baltimore paper - and I totally get where you're coming from.

It flies in the face of everything - literally everything - I've ever read on the subject of the PTBNL and how that trade works, but you didn't just make it up or have a misconception because you misremembered something you read somewhere. I give you credit and retract my "you've got nothin'" stance from earlier.

I still *think* I'm right, but I *am* looking into it at this point. If I get back information from more credible sources than me, I'll be sure to let you know about it.

I'm looking around too, but

I'm looking around too, but to this point I haven't found much. I will let you know if I am able to come across anything worth passing along. Relax the Super Bowl is on here in
a bit.

Also I would say that we

Also I would say that we each equally have nothing on this one so I wouldn't be so quick to tell me I'm wrong again. Why did you email other sources if you're so sure I'm wrong? First I had to have made it up, now either I'm wrong or those that published the information must be wrong. Gee, your a peach to talk with today.

I think you're sort of

I think you're sort of missing the point here. I really DO think you're mistaken, but the point is that you ACTUALLY HAD SOURCES.

If somebody told you something that you were entirely confident they were wrong about, I'm sure you'd tell them that. And if they decided to continue arguing it, the only way to find any kind of resolution is to back it up with proof. I've shown you documented proof from three independent sources that back up my take on how a PTBNL trade works, including one from baseball guru Rob Neyer. I asked you to show evidence to back up your view of how I was wrong and you BRISTLED at the idea! But you actually HAD proof! That's ASTONISHING to me!

So, having discovered that your source ultimately comes from an article at the Baltimore Sun, I'm taking the next step by saying "ok, I see that you didn't just make it up or misunderstand something you'd read" and because I AM ACTUALLY CURIOUS about it, I've EMailed people to find out if they got it wrong or if every other thing I've ever read on the subject got it wrong.

In other words, you are reading intent into what I'm doing that isn't there. I'm not maliciously trying to prove you wrong, or arrogantly trying to prove me right, I'm TRYING to learn what's TRUE so I'll know in the future!

And apparently THAT makes me a dick.

player to be named

I have no doubt that your sources are correct. But, there may-be a kernal of truth to what Harry is saying or why he thinks he is correct. According to the rules you posted there is the line that states "If the teams can't agree". Based on that line I would assume that some how player performance would be involved by one if not both teams. My quess is that it is somthing as simple as if Hill makes the major league roster the Cub's get one of 5 players from list A, if not then one of 5 from list B. I may-be wrong, but I can see how that gentleman's agreement may-be part of the trade.

From the different sources,

From the different sources, if the teams can't agree in advance it turns into a for-cash trade but a list of players must be made up beforehand.

What Harry wants to suggest is just generally incorrect - once a player is traded, if something happens that said player is a bust, his new team can't go back to the old team and demand compensation -- unless there is evidence that the old team had kept secret information about injury possibilities.

The whole point of the PTBNL is that it's bottom-of-the-barrel. The Cubs would be giving up Hill for the modern day equivalent of a box of baseballs. Hill's trade value is next-to-nil, the player they get back for him will have moderate-at-best potential, and if he doesn't work out then the Orioles will have rolled the dice and lost for next-to-nothing.

I'm not suggesting that at

I'm not suggesting that at all. What I'm saying is that this entire process is a hedging strategy for both sides, not just the cubs. Rich Hill, at this point in time is useless. Likely all 10 players on the list of available bodies are also in large part useless. But no one on either side really knows exactly how useless any of the aforementioned bodies are, so time is given to both parties to evaluate this miserable group of players. The possibility still exists that Hill has a breakout year or one of the guys on that list does the same thing, so both teams and MLB have to be ready in that case. I agree the cubs are likely to get the equivalent of squadeuche in return, but an attempt will be made by both teams and the office of MLB to make as even a deal as possible. I would say that this entire idea in no uncertain terms is a bad one, and that if the team wants to get nothing for Rich Hill they may as well allow him to fail in our system with the off-chance that he can turn it around. However the team simply has too many arms that are without options (Hill, Guzman, Weurtz, and Gaudin) to even attempt to carry them all, so understandably players will have to be moved.

Kurt I don't see anything

Kurt I don't see anything inconsistent with what you've cited, and the notion that teams could agree to two lists of players - the PTBNL to be chosen from one of the lists, depending on certain performance benchmarks in the 6 months following the trade.

What you cite is how the trades typically go down, not how they HAVE to go down. Teams could creatively agree to structure the trade in a variety of ways that remain within the strictures required by MLB. These kinds of conditional trades are rare, but they happen.

Further, even if you're correct that there can only be one list, the teams could still structure alternatives: here's the list, and if Hill pitches X number of innings, the Cubs get to choose from the list; otherwise, the Cubs get $50k.

Your comment that PTBNL somehow = bottom of the barrel is not accurate. The method is simply a way for teams to get a trade done when they can't yet agree on a player. Yes, it is often because the player coming back is going to be of little value, so it doesn't matter which player the receiving team is going to get - but that is not always the case. Ask Jason Schmidt or David Ortiz, for example.

We read that differently

You say:

a list of players must be made up beforehand

Rob Neyer says (emphasis mine):

Sometimes, at the time of the deal the team receiving the player will provide the other club a list of minor leaguers, and later the club will have their pick of the players on that list.

Your own source says the list is only sometimes, not a pre-requisite to the trade Logically, if a list is optional to a trade there's an ability to have clauses in the list. I like Maddog's logic of a tiered list actually, although I'm not sure how easy it would be to negotiate many clauses.

He outlined both situations.

He outlined both situations. Either they do a list of players beforehand, or they go with cash.

I also don't think the list

I also don't think the list is 5-10 players as stated here. Only a few GMs talk about this stuff with the media, but of the ones who have, it seems a common number of players to choose from is between 2 and 4. I've never heard 5 or anywhere near 10. I find it highly unlikely that the teams could come to an agreement on 10 names, which is also why I don't think when this trade (Hill to the O's) is done that it will be any different than most PTBNL trades.

Most importantly though, these trades often take place when players cannot be traded. I'd say that is the most common reason why PTBNL's are traded. I can't say for certain and I'm not going to look back through transactions of the past 30 years, but I think you'd find that most PTBNL's were either traded between November 20th and the end of the Rule 5 Draft (the so-called roster freeze) or a player who has not yet been with an organization one year after being drafted.

You'll notice that both of those are examples of teams stretching, if not entirely breaking the rules. This is why I am certain if teams wanted to do a deal based on around a players performance or playing time they could. There may be some rule that you cannot do that, but I don't think it would stop teams from doing it.

My eyes!!!

If you hear someone screaming, "My eyes, my eyes!!!" it's me. And I'm screaming because I just read the post and all of the associated discussion.
I suspect that this is a discussion about common practice, as I doubt there are detailed, hard and fast rules on the topic. No? The ugly thing about common practice is that every once in a while somebody wags his or her middle finger at the notion.

player to be named

I am not trying to add fuel to the fire. I just remembered 2 weird twists to PTBNL deals. The first was that the Braves included Brett Butler in a mid season deal as a PTBN, because they wanted to keep him for the play off/world series. Last year M. Owens was a PTBN in a D-Back deal because he was on the DL and you can not trade a player on the DL. It would seem, based on a very small sample size, that GM's are allowed flexability in how they structure deals involving PTBNL. So could there be more than 1 list of players that the Cub's get to choose from based on how well Hill performs. Only 2 people know and I doubt if they would tell. Will we get a shot a one of the O's top 10 prospects, I doubt it. I would like to think/hope that if Hill is able to shake whatever his problem is we would get a player of better value than what we get if he does not. I am not sure how much additional information I could gather on the 2 mentioned trades other than they did happen. If you want I will look at them in more detail and see.

I think one of the

I think one of the interesting things I read while researching this was that the PTBNL trade was basically designed to get around "the rules."

I don't mind being wrong on this. I wish that Harry was willing to provide earlier in this discussion his sources that contradict what we know about PTBNL trades, and I'm not really sure why he's so offended that I'd strongly second guess him on it, but to each their own.

Either way, some people aren't thick skinned enough to handle being contradicted, but it's not a big deal.

your reply

I don't know if you are wrong Kurt. So far there is so much grey in the rule other than the player changing leagues who knows what is allowed. As a matter of fact didn't the Cub's trade Dickie Knowels for a PTBNL and it turned out Dickie was that player?I can not remember exactly, other than the Cub's traded a pitcher in 85 or 86 and got him back as the PTBNL. Think he was traded to the Brewer's. I can not wait for spring training so we have something to talk about besides this BS. Good Luck finding someone who understands the rule.

The player was Dickie Noles. He went to Detroit late in 87 and saved 2 games for them. The Cub's got him back in the off season and ended up in Balt.. I think it was a bit of an issue because the 2 saves made a difference. Can anyone fill in the holes on this one?

Micah Owings couldn't be

Micah Owings couldn't be traded because he was placed on waivers and another team claimed him. He was still the player to be named later, he just could not be traded until the season was over as a result of the waiver claim.

trade date

The trade to the Red's was completed 9-12-08. I googled him and got the date from 2 different sources. I am still sure, but can not prove it yet, that I read a newspaper art. saying that it was a stint on the DL that held up his moving. The only reason I mentioned his name was there something weird about his involvement as a PTBNL for whatever the reason.

Players on the DL can be

Players on the DL can be traded as a player to be named later. The player can't be traded if they were placed on waivers and a claim was made on that player by another team.

Right ... PTBNL trades occur

Right ... PTBNL trades occur to get around the DL. A player who's on the DL at the time a trade is announced cannot actually be traded until he comes off the DL. Hence, if somebody had a stint on the Disabled List, it would "hold up" the trade until he was off it.

Exactly, Owings had to come

Exactly, Owings had to come off the DL first, before he could clear waivers, after which doing both of those things he could then be traded as the player to be named later.

PTBNL are often involved in

PTBNL are often involved in trades from November 20th until the Rule 5 draft ends. Players not on a team's 40-man roster cannot be traded in that span and therefore are often PTBNL. The source you quote above saying it happens for 2 reasons is wildly inaccurate. It also happens when a team cannot yet trade a player (a player they drafted this past season cannot be traded for one calendar year) so teams may include a PTBNL in a deal knowing exactly who it is, but they are just unable to name him in the deal.

Also, even with what Kurt wrote above, there's nothing that says you cannot have tiers to select a player from. It just says that a player must be selected from the list or the team will get some already agreed upon cash. This does not mean you could not put Players A, B and C in Group 1, Players D, E And F in Group 2, and Players G, H, I and Group 3. As long as the Cubs selected one of the players they would still be following these rules if these rules are even accurate and I seriously question they are. These are someone else's interpretation of the rules and oftentimes interpretations are inaccurate.

In other words, if the cubs and O's agreed to trade Hill to the O's for a player to be named later, there is nothing stopping the two teams from structuring the deal around how Hill performs in 2009. As long as the 2 teams exchange a list of names and the Cubs select from within that list (or accept money if they prefer) they've followed the rules (IF THESE RULES ARE ACCURATE!). The Cubs and O's could agree that if Hill makes less than 10 starts they get to select from Group 1, if he makes between 11 and 20 starts they get to choose from Group 1 or 2 and if hill makes 30 starts the Cubs get to select from all 3 groups. There is nothing stopping them from doing this based on what Kurt has written here. The list would never change this way and it's based entirely on how many starts Rich Hill gets.

I do not think you could structure it around how he performs though as you cannot base incentives on how a player performs, but only on playing time so I'm guessing any tiered selection like this would be based on Hill's playing time.

I don't know if this is accurate, but that's what a few O's reporters have said and based on what Kurt even wrote in this post there's no reason to believe it cannot happen.


Got proof? (Kidding, kidding.) It sounds plausible. Of all the sources I cited, I'd probably trust Neyer who basically put it the same way as what I saw elsewhere.

I would trust the details of

I would trust the details of the trade when or if it gets done and nothing until then. As good as Neyer may be, his Transactions Primer is as basic a piece of paper as it gets.

All I'm saying, based on what you have quoted and said in this post, there's no reason to believe that a deal can't be structured on how Rich Hill does as an Oriole. I was just pointing out an obvious example that would fit the parameters of the rules you listed in this thread.

Also, I have no doubt that general managers and owners cheat every bit as much as the ballplayers do and if the teams really wanted to structure a deal this way, they'd do it whether it's legal or not. I haven't read anything anywhere to suggest what the O's reporters have said would in fact be against the rules.

GM's & owners

GM's and owners cheating? The next thing you will be saying is there is no Santa or Easter Bunny.

Also, as mentioned above,

Also, as mentioned above, conditional trades take place quite a bit in Major League Baseball. Sam Mellinger who follows the Royals referred to this possible trade between the O's and Cubs as a conditional player to be named later.

I have no idea what the actual rules are as these things are very difficult to figure out, but I don't think there's any doubt you can make the player to be named conditional on how someone does (or probably how much someone plays). It wouldn't make any sense for that to not be allowed.

I'd still like to read

I'd still like to read something official, but it doesn't seem that there's a GM handbook scanned to the internet anywhere.

But, that said, I am happy to say that I'm very likely wrong about my understanding of the PTBNL rule - if it can even be *called* a rule.

With that in mind, let's hope that Hill has a great year wherever he lands so the Cubs get a better pick of talent.


A) Seriously? I leave for one day and everyone goes insane?


B) How is it possible that there even exists a rule in baseball that nobody understands. Did baseball get jealous of the NBA's salary cap.


this is a whole lot

this is a whole lot of reading. i am glad i stayed out of it, because honestly i had never looked into the PTBNL rules. after looking into their is really not much to find.

what i think we can all agree on is that we wont be getting anyone really worth talking about in return.


The best part is that HIll is likely to go somewhere else (Mariners) in a normal trade giving all of us no further insight on the topic. Ironic.
And ya'll made my point about common practice. Thanks.

I think this might be the only instance

..of a Rich Hill-topical post generating over 50 comments!

The first thing that came to my mind was the Harry Chiti trade, where he was traded for a PTBNL, and the PTBNL ended up being the guy himself. So I'm not sure how this one fits into the pre-posted list scenario.

That was when they changed

That was when they changed the rule to stipulate that the PTBNL has to be in the minor leagues when the trade is initiated.


I have been quiet until now, assuming that the Peavy deal would culminate the over all off season dealing. Now that it appears the major dealing is done, I must say I am disappointed and I feel as though the team is worse than last year. I would be interested in other opinions.

I believe Wood should have been brought back and with Marmol and Gregg he would have comprosed a great back end of pen and taken pressure off the other two.

Paul Bako is no Hank White, a terrible move. Who cares he's a lefty---he can't hit!! No one can convince me Soto will bond with him as he did Blanco!!

Why oft injured nut job MB in right with Bobby Abreu available??

Aaron Heilman is a Hendry favorite...so was Barrett. At least Olson was a lefty!

Miles is miles from being DeRosa.

The only plus I can see with Peavy talks over is keeping Josh Vitters. Rameriz is a dog. Note his total disinterest in attending Cub fest. I hope to see Vitters at third and SOON

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