TB trades Andy Sonnanstine to NYM; NYM trades SS Reese Havens and CF
Ezequiel Carrera to SF; SF trades Randy Winn, RHP Keiichi Yabu, and LHP Geno
Espineli to TB
So this is a three-team deal.
And yes, the Rays trade away one of their starters in the playoffs Andy
Sonnanstine. Still, this trade
makes sense for every team involved.
The Rays predictably will use their starting pitcher depth to acquire a
bona-fide starter in right field. In
this case it would be Randy Winn.
It’s true, the Rays have a lot of players
who play right field. Eric Hinske, Gabe Gross, Ben Zobrist, Fernando Perez,
Ruggiano all are capable. But
Hinske and Gross are not exactly the type of guys you want starting every day
on a team that is expected to compete for the championship again next
year. Zobrist and Perez are bright,
young players but at least at this point are most valuable being on the bench
because of Perez’s ability to play every OF position, and his blazing
speed. Zobrist also is very versatile
and is a valuable guy off the bench. He
might even have a reasonable chance to overtake Iwamura
as the Rays starting second baseman. Ruggiano
has done everything you could ask from him in AAA. Yet he just can’t seem to bring the same game to the majors. He had a .911 OPS in 66 AAA games versus
.576 with the Rays. So, with Winn
coming up, in it can put all of the right field questions to rest while adding
a veteran presence that can fill the #2 spot in the Rays order. That way Iwamura can move down in the order
where he should be. If Crawford
continues to struggle, Iwamura could easily come back to the top instead of a
guy like Upton having to be taken out of the heart of the order.
Although Winn will obviously make a huge mark on
the Rays, I think Andy Sonnanstine is the biggest impact player involved in
this deal. Simply put, to have a
Sonnanstine in the Mets rotation would be fantastic for them. Even if, at his best, Sonnanstine is only as
good as a #3 starter, his ability to eat up innings without eating payroll is a
quality invaluable to the Mets at this point.
This way the Mets can afford not resigning Oliver Perez. In my opinion, Jon Niese is
ready to be the Mets’ 5th starter next year. However, if the Mets do re-sign Perez their
rotation would be dynamite. Whether or
not Perez comes back, the Mets would have, for the first time in a while, a
young rotation that can last a long time.
To have a rotation where every pitcher in under control until 2012 is a
huge advantage over the other NL East clubs.
Of course since Sonnanstine is that
valuable, New York will have to give up a lot.
The big sacrifice that the Mets will have to make is their second pick
of the 2008 draft, slugging infielder Reese Havens.
Havens (left) was drafted 22nd overall
as a shortstop but is expected to wind up as third or second baseman by the
time he gets to the majors. Ezequiel
Carrera, a High-A outfielder, didn’t put up great numbers this year but if
you start thinking about his age (21) and the fact that he completely skipped
A-ball, his .344 OBP, 28 steals, and seven dingers are pretty impressive. The Giants have a fair amount of outfielders
like Fred Lewis,
Schierholtz and some nice prospects like Antoan
Richardson, Ben Copeland,
Martinez-Esteve. And yet, with the
decent chance that Rowand and Lewis could get traded in the near future,
Copeland’s and Richardson’s non-overwhelmingness, and Martinez-Esteve’s and
Schierholtz’s sudden lack of power, there is a reason to why the Giants might
want to add another outfield prospect.
Now when you think about it, Tampa Bay would be
trading Sonnanstine straight up for Winn, and that obviously wouldn’t favor
them. But if you add Yabu and Espineli to
the deal, it evens out. Those two will
add depth to the bullpen. And although
Espineli (right) probably will find himself spending some time in Durham, he provides a
lefty arm and the credentials of 2.66 in Triple-A last year in the hitter-friendly
Pacific Coast League. Yabu (below) is pretty old but if he can be effective when he’s 40 (3.57 ERA), how much much worse can he be at 41?
SO, when it’s all said and done, here’s how it
would work out for each team:
Receive Give Up
Randy Winn Andy Sonnanstine
Receive Give Up
Reese Havens Randy Winn
Ezequiel Carrera Keiichi
Receive Give Up
Andy Sonnanstine Reese
So, what do you think? Fair all around?
I guess since Monday marks the beginning of
baseball’s hardware week, I will give you my picks for each major award (with the
runner-up in parentheses):
Again, these are my picks for who deserves each
award, not my predictions for who will win:
Rookie of the Year
AL – Evan Longoria — (Jose Arredondo)
NL – Geovany Soto — (Joey Votto)
AL – Cliff Lee — (Roy Halladay)
NL – Johan Santana — (CC Sabathia)
AL – Kevin Youkilis — (Mark Teixeira)
NL – Wily Mo Pe, I
mean, Albert Pujols — (Manny
Manager of the Year
AL – Joe Maddon — (Ron Gardenhire)
NL – Cecil Cooper — (Charlie Manuel)