Sunday, July 30, 2006

Trading Deadline Nears... Time is Running Out on Hendry to Screw Something Up

The deadline is 18 hours away as a type this sentence. So far the Cubs have made one trade.. Scott Williamson to the Padres for two mediocre A-ball pitchers. Not exactly something to be excited about, but its better than nothing. This is a prime time for Hendry to set this team up for the future. We have many players with value now that should be traded, and most of those guys probably won't factor into our next legitimate run at the playoffs. With it being a seller's market and a lot of teams that need to make moves, this is a perfect time to do something. However, Hendry hasn't exactly been Branch Rickey the last couple years. In fact he hasn't made a good trade since 2004. Who should Hendry trade you ask? Well here's my list:

Aramis Ramirez(especially if reports that he'll opt out of his contract are true)
Juan Pierre
Jacque Jones
Todd Walker
Ronny Cedeno
Bob Howry
Scott Eyre
Ryan Dempster
Greg Maddux

Neifi Perez and Glendon Rusch should be DFA'd right this second. Angel Pagan probably shouldn't be on the 25 man roster either. I'll go through each player with possible desetinations and one(or maybe two) trades I would make with each. Minor league players have their stat page at linked to.

Aramis Ramirez. Possible destinations: Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, San Diego Padres, Houston Astros

All 3 of those teams think they have a good chance at the playoffs and need a 3B. The Angels are the most appealing team because of their system and that they seem to have failed on going after Miguel Tejada. The Padres really need a 3B too as they're currently deploying the decaying corpse of Vinny Castilla at 3B, but I don't think they really have enough to offer to get Ramirez without seriously hurting their major league team. The Astros also need offense and would be an intriguing trade candidate, especially if Ramirez is set on opting out of his contract. The two offers I would extend:

Aramis Ramirez and Ryan Dempster to the Houston Astros for Morgan Ensberg, Brad Lidge, and Jason Lane

Aramis Ramirez and Greg Maddux to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim for Brandon Wood, Ervin Santana, and a PTBNL(some low level high ceiling guy).

Juan Pierre. Possible destinations: Boston Red Sox, Chicago White Sox, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, Minnesota Twins

The Red Sox supposedly inquired about Pierre a few weeks ago... probably as a 4th OF/pinch runner, similar to how they used Dave Roberts in '04. That would make some sense for them, but with Pierre's hot streak his price might be too high. The White Sox like the Pierre type players and could use him in CF, especially if they acquire a better LF. Brian Anderson's defense has been great, but I have a feeling they would perceive Pierre's offense to be a huge addition to them. The Angels also like the type of player Pierre is and they don't really have a CF. Figgins is more useful to them when he can play 6 different positions than he is locked into 1. The Twins might be interested if the Hunter/Stewart injuries aren't healing that well. That team also prefers the toolsy/fast type player, so Pierre might be a good fit for them in either CF or LF. My trade offer:

Juan Pierre to the Chicago White Sox for Charlie Haeger.

Jacque Jones. Possible destinations: Minnesota Twins, Boston Red Sox, Houston Astros, St. Louis Cardinals, San Francisco Giants

Jones was a perfect fit for the Yankees until they took the better route and acquired Bobby Abreu for practically nothing. With Nixon's injury tonight, Jones might be a nice option for the Red Sox OF, and the Red Sox would be smart enough to make sure he never got an at-bat against a left handed pitcher again. The other teams could use a decent OF that can play any 3 OF positions and hit for some power. My trade offer:

Jacque Jones to the San Francisco Giants for Eddy Martinez Estevez.

Todd Walker. Possible destinations: New York Yankees, New York Mets, Detroit Tigers, Oakland Athletics

I kind of like Walker.. his offense is good, especially at 2B. But his defense isn't that good and he seems to not be liked very well by the team. He has value to teams that need a veteran 2B/1B that can hit. With Cano hurt, the Yankees could have Walker start in the short term and he'd be a nice bench player for them after Cano comes back. The other teams are pretty much in the same boat, could use his bat to help strengthen their offense and bench incase of injuries. My trade offer:

Todd Walker to the Oakland Athletics for Kevin Melillo

Ronny Cedeno. Possible destinations: ????

I don't really know who'd want Ronny because he wouldn't be a playoff run acquisition. However, I think he has some value to teams that overvalue AVG and undervalue OBP/SLG. Unfortunately the Cubs are one of them. I'd try to find a team that'd give me something of value for him. The Royals might be a possibility. A small trade for someone like Gathright or a minor leaguer might work. Only trade offer I can think of:

Ronny Cedeno to Kansas City Royals for Jeff Bianchi

Bob Howry, Scott Eyre, and Ryan Dempster. Possible destinations: Everyone.

Everyone needs relief pitchers. Even if they aren't performing well(hello Ryan Dempster). The Reds gave up two quality players and a minor league reliever for two decent relief pitchers. Howry and Eyre have been very good this year and Dempster has.. well he has a lot of saves, which some GMs really like. I've been pleasantly surprised with Eyre, but with how volatile relief pitchers are, and how much Dusty is overworking both Eyre and Howry, I'd rather get high value now then have them flame out next year. Some possible offers:

(As mentioned earlier) Aramis Ramirez and Ryan Dempster to the Houston Astros for Morgan Ensberg, Brad Lidge, and Jason Lane

Scott Eyre to the Boston Red Sox for Michael Bowden and a PTBNL(Lenny DiNardo perhaps?)

Bob Howry and Scott Eyre to the Chicago White Sox for Josh Fields and a PTBNL(low level high ceiling type guy)

Scott Eyre and Bob Howry to the New York Yankees for Melky Cabrera and Scott Proctor

Scott Eyre to the Detroit Tigers for Wil Ledezma and Clete Thomas

Bob Howry and Ryan Dempster to the Atlanta Braves for Joey Devine and Yunel Escobar

Greg Maddux. Possible destinations: San Diego Padres and Los Angeles Dodgers.

Every few hours it seems like Maddux is either really close to getting dealt or is absolutely not getting dealt. So its hard to say what is really going on, but the Padres and Dodgers are the clear frontrunners and I still think its likely one of them will offer something nice enough to entice Hendry. My offer to each:

Greg Maddux to the San Diego Padres for Ben Johnson and Chase Headley

Greg Maddux to the Los Angeles Dodgers for Etanislao Abreu and Greg Miller

Oh, I forgot about Phil Nevin. Attach him to any deal that might sweeten the pot for the other team. A bench player that can play a few positions(C/1B/3B/LF/RF), albeit poorly, and hit for some power could be useful, plus he won't cost them anything.


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