Tuesday, July 24, 2012

You Have to Give Cashman Credit

Most people, if they got completely fleeced by a team in a trade would be reluctant to deal with that team for a while. Maybe try some other teams. But, not Cashman. When he realized that he needed a washed-up former all-star, he got right back on the phone to Seattle. I bet he didn’t even wonder if the erosion of Ichiro’s skills was due to an injury of some sort, as opposed to simple old age. That takes some guts. Kudos.

The Yankees move prompted a Yankees fan to ask me today when the Red Sox would sell. I’m not really sure what he meant.

To me, the term “sell” or “seller” refers to the team that parts with a star player for prospects. The idea being that the team isn’t going anywhere with the star, so it’s better to cash him in and try again another year. The “buyer” is the team that tosses prospects to another team for its star to win now. When the Expos traded Pedro Martinez to the Sox for two prospects, they were the seller.

Frankly, the Sox don’t seem to fit either of those terms. Are they going to trade away any of their stars for prospects? I can’t imagine who. Are they trading away prospects to land a star? Maybe. Are they more likely to trade some middling guy for another middling guy? Probably. Let’s look at this logically.

Barring some major blockbuster, Salty, Gonzalez, Pedroia, and Middlebrooks are staying right where they are. They’re too good. Gonzalez may be expensive, but he’s worth it. You might see Ellsbury moving if the Sox wanted to get something before Boras asked for $300 million. But, who would rent a player coming off a half-season injury? He’s better than anything the Sox would get for him. Same goes for Crawford. Even if you foolishly wanted to trade him, he’s better than anything you’d get. That leaves you with Ross, Sweeney, and Aviles from the list of starters that could move. Personally, I think they should move Ross, since they can get the most for him. He may be the most valuable chip they have from the starting line-up that might be available. Would moving Ross constitute a “sell?” Not to me. But, if you want to, I guess that’s up to you.

What about the pitchers? You’re not getting anything for Lester or Beckett that’s any better than what you have. Unless you go for the old “change of scenery” idea and swap Beckett for another guy who is his equal, and just hope they remember how to pitch in Boston. Doesn’t seem like all that useful of an idea to me. Really, there’s nothing there either. I guess this is a long way of saying I don’t expect much to happen at the deadline.

I think I’m OK with that.

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