Archive for trade

why don’t you and i

Posted in baseball, Sports with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on July 26, 2008 by AccountKiller

Mark Shapiro continues to amaze me. He is as smart as Ned Colletti is dumb. While Cleveland hoped to be in a pennant race, they are not, but that doesn’t mean their front office is just going to stand-pat. Having already obtained one of the best bats in all of the minor leagues in Matt LaPorta, Mark Shapiro went at it again this weekend.

The Indians shipped off Casey Blake and Luis Perdoma, a minor league relief pitcher. Perdoma brought Anthony Reyes over from the Cardinals, who was once a top pitching prospect but never quite put it all together in St Louis. A change in scenery may be all he needs. However, the real coup was the deal involving Casey Blake.

Blake went to the Dodgers in exchange for Carlos Santana (explaining my obscure post title) and Jonathan Meloan. Carlos Santana is a young catching prospect signed as an IFA back in ’04. He has the arm strength to remain at the all important catcher position, just needs to improve his receiving skills. If he can remain a catcher, this is a great acquisition because he can absolutely rake. He currently sports a .323/.431/.563/.993 line at Advanced Single-A.

Then there’s Mr. Meloan. He’s been the single best reliever in the minors over the last couple seasons, however his interest is in a starting role. His control has been suspect, so many have doubts about his ability to be a starting pitcher at the major league level. It remains to be seen how the Indians will want to use him, but if they wanted to he could end up with the 9th inning role as early as September this year. Meloan sports an electric fastball, with two above average breaking pitches: a mid 80s slider and a pitch I’d classify as a knuckle-curve of sorts that sits in the high 70s. An absolute gem of an arm, providing further evidence of Ned Colletti’s stupidity.

Mark Shapiro on the other hand, is nothing short of brilliant.

Indian fans, you have a lot to look forward to.

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Posted in baseball, Sports with tags , , , , , , , , , , on July 8, 2008 by AccountKiller

The Chicago Cubs recently acquired Rich Harden and Chad Gaudin from the Oakland Athletics. This is quite the coup for the Cubs, acquiring Harden who is just 26 years old, and has a $7 million dollar club option for ’09. However, Harden is oft-injured and already spent time on the shelf this year and is reportedly experiencing dead arm and decreased velocity lately.

My prediction? While it’s unlikely this will backfire on the clubs, it probably won’t help them this year when Harden finds himself hurt yet again. However, it must be noted that the Cubs didn’t trade any player that they may really regret giving up. Matt Murton is serviceable, but not an outstanding player. Sean Gallagher is alright, but nothing special. Eric Patterson has a nice combination of power and speed for an infielder, but he is probably behind where the Cubs had hoped he’d be development wise at 25 years old.

The only real intriguing prospect the Cubs gave up, in my opinion, is their young catcher Josh Donaldson. Drafted in the 1st round in 2007, Donaldson had a phenomenal showing at the Cubs low Single-A affiliate Boise last year, where he led the Northwest League in OBP. That is likely what caught Beane’s eye, along with the scarce and important position he plays, but Josh has been struggling in Single-A Peoria this year where he’s shown very little competence at the plate. However the talent is there, and he should hit for both power and average with some more development. He also has a good release from behind the plate, so he should be able to stay at catcher as long as he improves upon his receiving skills.

So with the MLB Hot Stove heating up, who is next? The St Louis Cardinals find themselves only 3.5 games behind the Cubbies in the NL Central, and leading the NL Wild Card, so you’ve got to think their front office is working overtime now.

what are you waiting for?

Posted in baseball, Sports with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 4, 2008 by AccountKiller

Rumor has it the Milwaukee Brewers have offered Matt LaPorta to the Cleveland Indians in exchange for CC Sabathia. If this is true, Cleveland needs to just accept this before the Brewers change their mind.

LaPorta was drafted by the Cubs out of high school in the 14th round, however he did not sign and instead went to the University of Florida. Despite putting up fantastic numbers in his first 3 seasons with the Gators, his stock did not improve much at the end of his Junior year when the Boston Red Sox selected him in the 14th round. Again LaPorta decided to return to school, and he responded with a monster senior year. In just 52 games, LaPorta hit .402/.582/.817 (.1399 OPS!!!!!!) with 20 HRs, 55 RBIs, and just 16 strikeouts vs 55 walks. He was expected to be a late 1st round pick, but the Brewers wasted no time selecting the talented hitter in the 1st round, 7th overall.

LaPorta has since been an absolute beast, arguably the most productive hitter at any level in the minors. Through 82 games this season in Double-A, LaPorta is hitting .291/.404/.584 with 20 HRs and 66 RBIs.

The Brewers can probably afford to lose LaPorta, as they already have a multitude of great offensive players with sub-par defensive skills. With a core of Ryan Braun, Rickie Weeks, Prince Fielder, and Corey Hart already producing for the club, the Brewers also have Matt Gamel, who is absolutely dominating at Double-A Huntsville, as well as Matt Salome who is a top catching prospect. Assuming the Brewers can also sign 2008 1st round draft pick Brett Lawrie, they’d be an embarassment of riches.

The Indians badly need offensive help. With Victor Martinez out, and Travis Hafner hurt and completely lost when he’s healthy, it’s been Grady Sizemore shouldering the entire load himself. They should jump at the opportunity to get LaPorta, rather than mess around with using this as a chance to cause a bidding war.

 

UPDATE: It’s official. The Cleveland Indians sent LHP CC Sabathia to the Milwaukee Brewers in exchange for OF Matt LaPorta, LHP Zach Jackson, RHP Rob Bryson, and a player to be named later (possibly 3B Taylor Green). Great move by Indians GM Mark Shapiro. As for Brewers GM Doug Melvin, he only comes out a winner in this if the Brewers make the playoffs and put up a decent run at a World Series title.