We have some new details from my Mets source concerning a possible trade of Alfonso Soriano to the Mets. The latest report is that the Mets would send Lastings Milledge and Steve Trachsel to the Rangers for Soriano. The deal would be contingent on Soriano signing a long-term extension to play second base (not outfield).
The 35 year-old Trachsel would be a decent, affordable addition to the back-end of the Texas rotation. Jon Daniels may express concerns about Trachsel’s performance away from Shea Stadium in his last full season (2004). That year, Trachsel posted a 5.65 ERA with 16 HR allowed on the road. On the other hand, Trachsel was actually better on the road than at Shea in 2003. Trachsel’s 2006 option will pay him anywhere from $2.5MM-7MM based on innings pitched. He could be worth 4-5 wins in 2006.
Lastings Milledge was ranked the 4th best outfield prospect in baseball by Baseball Prospectus before the 2005 season. He did nothing to change that perception in ’05, batting .318 at Single and Double A stops. He projects to be worth 3 wins at the Major League level in 2006.
The OBP deficient Alfonso Soriano would be a curious addition to the Mets’ lineup. He was especially poor away from Ameriquest in 2005, hitting .224/.265/.374 (AVG/OBP/SLG). The power splits are tough to decipher, as Ameriquest is known to boost HRs for right-handed hitters by only about 6%. Soriano hit .315/.355/.656 in Texas in ’05.
Defensively, Soriano placed 17th among regular second basemen in range factor in 2005. According to Baseball Prospectus’s WARP statistic, which combines offense and defense, Soriano was the 19th best second baseman in baseball in 2005. He projects to be worth 6 wins in 2006 and should get a raise to about $10MM through arbitration.