Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Laughing at Trade Rumors

Ah, the trade deadline; a time when teams stop, reassess their position, and make the decision to upgrade their arsenal or find the best way to screw their competitors with a fire sale. With Manny's name flying around the rumor wire like a kitten chasing a laser light we're looking at a particularly vibrant crop of rumors this year, but there are a couple of other areas (*cough* bullpen *cough*) that deserve some attention, too. Here's my thoughts on the latest rundown:
  • Manny for Miggy: Wasn't this trade a bad idea two years ago? Why would it be any better now, when Tejada's not only having a subpar season, but has in fact become a demonstrably poorer hitter in the two years since 2006 and is only likely to get worse (Mitchell Report, anyone?)? Revising DC's metaphor from the time, trading Ramirez for Tejada would be like getting 75 cents on the dollar. And I'm being generous. Good thing both sides have shot this rumor down.
  • Manny for Andruw Jones: So laughable I'm not even going to comment on it. I will, however, mock the gentleman who suggested (in the comments section) that the Sox trade Manny for Jones, Chin-Lung Hu, and Andy LaRoche. I understand that LaRoche is supposed to be a bit of the second coming, but since neither he nor Hu have been hitting very well (to put it mildly) and Jones is a bit of a joke and the Sox would need to replace Manny now to have a chance of getting to the playoffs this season, I'm not sure why that deal is anything close to a good idea. Good job, buddy. We're all glad you're not in the GM's chair.
  • Manny to the Mets (for prospects): Same general problem as Manny for LaRoche and Hu, but worse because the prospects aren't named, preventing me from judging their relative value. Besides, the Sox aren't rebuilding, they're trying to win another ring. Everyone does understand why trading for prospects is a bad idea during a playoff run, right?
  • Ron Mahay / Doug Brocail: Mahay was pretty good with the Sox a decade ago, though his K:BB ratio and WHIP did start to get pretty ugly in 1998. He's also phenomenally streaky, but importing a replacement part with an ERA+ of 140 percent above average for 2008 definitely has my attention. Brocail is far less enticing: his best years were in the late 90s, he gives up a run for every three men he allows on base, and he's 41, which kinda makes him like a Mike Timlin the Sox would have to trade players to get. On the plus side, he does have almost a strikeout an inning...I still can't see the value, though. It's also unclear who Boston would lose to gain the services of either one of these two pitchers.
  • Jarrod Saltalamacchia: Salty hasn't really proven himself to be much of a hitter in his first two seasons, but he's also playing backup backstop to Gerald Laird and his Bat of Power, so he hasn't really had much of a chance to shine. Coming to Boston might give him the chance to improve his eye and train to be Varitek's eventual successor, but can he catch a knuckleball?