I blogged a few days about how stupid it was for someone like Ray DeRousse (or others) to propose trading Shelby Miller PLUS David Freese for Texas Ranger phenom, unproven at the MLB level, Jurickson Profar to upgrade at shortstop above Pete Kozma.
But, to revive 2013 trade talk that was happening between the Cardinals and the Los Angeles Angels near trade deadline, for Erick Aybar? Hey, sign me up.
Aybar is a solid fielder, per Peter Gammons he's one of the top 10 batting shortstops in MLB, and, at $8.5M a year for the next three years, the price is definitely right.
And, agree or disagree, with me or or Gammons, I've got a poll up now,
and you can make your comment on best shortstop upgrade options.
We know the Haloes need pitching. We also know that Freese would be an moderate upgrade at third over the Alberto Callaspo they had until making a trade with Oakland and a definite upgrade over the Chris Nelson that replaced Callaspo. (Given his cup of coffee and minors performance before that, I don't think the Haloes view Luis Jimenez as a real solution at third, either.) This is a win-win. (That said, Cards fans, as much as you might want to dump Lance Lynn, that won't get this trade done, I don't think. That said, it might be worth a test run to start the offer with Lynn plus Freese.)
I would put this deal ahead of signing Jhonny Peralta as a free agent, well above a free agent overpay for Stephen Drew and at least somewhat ahead of a stop-gap resigning of Rafael Furcal.
And, as of Nov. 14, no thanks on Peralta, if he's wanting "much more" than 3/$45M, a massive, massive, overpay. Hell, 3/$45 is an overpay itself, let alone "much more," whatever that means. (What it really would mean is Tulo-range money, and in that case, I'll trade for Tulo if the price is halfway right.)
There's also an attitude issue, and I don't care what fellow Tigers
players said about his clubhouse presence. There's an attitude issue for
him wanting that much money coming off the roiding suspension, and
who's only busted 115 on OPS+ twice since 2005?
As of Nov. 16, Christina Karhl, in her weigh-in, for some reason, ignores Aybar entirely, and also thinks Drew is available for less than $10M/year. I kind of doubt that, but ... if he is, I'd take him over Aybar for sure. Because then, we're near a salary wash, without trading anybody. Sign me up.
Also, although his stolen-base percentages aren't always fantastic, Aybar offers the Cardinals more speed than any of the other options above, with the possible exception of Profar. And, as I blogged about a week ago, the Cardinals need more speed, and more general improvement in base-running.
The move offers the Cardinals other benefits, too.
Opening up a spot in the rotation, the Cardinals can give Trevor Rosenthal his wish and let him compete for a shot as a starter along with Carlos Martinez. (Doorknob bless Joe Kelly, but, long term? I see him as another Lynn. And, we don't know about John Gast, post-surgery, or Tyler Lyons period or Jaime Garcia for that matter. I'm a sabermetrics guy. If Rosenthal has got the pitch array to start, he's worth more there than as a closer.
If you're worried about how well Jason Motte will come back from surgery, then deal with John Axford, or even Edward Mujica. You still won't keep both, and you can bid the two of them against each other. (The Cards should do that anyway, pending any trade that moves one of the starters somewhere else.)
So, to me, this is a no-brainer. It's win-win for both teams as far as immediate needs. It tidies up the pitching staff as far as longer-term needs. And, by the end of 2015, the team will know for sure if Greg Garcia is the longer-term answer or not. (And again, Cards fans, we already know Ryan Jackson is NOT the answer to replace Kozma.)