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Scott Rolen To Milwaukee Rumors

Apparently intra-division trading is no problem for John Mozeliak and Doug Melvin.  Here are two takes on the rumored Scott Rolen to Milwaukee deal.

  • Tom Haudricourt talked to Doug Melvin and learned that nothing is imminent with the Cards.  What's more, Melvin hasn't talked to the Cards for weeks. Hmmm.  This trade would require the Cards eating some salary.  Theoretically Ryan Braun would move to left field to accomodate Rolen.  The Brewers could send over Chris Capuano and might try to act like Kevin Mench would sweeten the deal.
  • Buster Olney said this morning that the Cards "have had their most extensive talks with the Brewers" regarding Rolen.  He also names Capuano as the likely target.  Olney ponders whether the Cards would be compelled to pursue Miguel Tejada to replace Rolen at third base.

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Do the Cardinals really need to eat any of the contract?

Next year, Mench and Cappy are scheduled to make $4 M/each. So, they'd basically be trading $8 M for $12 M and getting the player they want in return.

They could clear even more space by moving Capuano and Hall for Rolen and Reyes.

Rolen and Reyes shouldn't cost more than $13-$15 M over the next 3 years.

Capuano doesn't become a FA until 2010. Bill Hall is due $4.8 M in 2008, $6.8 M in 2009, and $8.4 M in 2010.

So, they'd be trading:
Year: Cards for Brewers
2008: $12.6 M for $8.8 M
2009: $13 M for $10.8 M
2010: $15 M for $8.4 M

Obviously, the Brewers are taking on considerable more payroll here (about $12.6 M) but it would work within their contract restraints.

Of course, who really knows that those are anyways. They are going to pay Jeff Suppan $12.5 M in 2009 and 2010.

I guess my concern is do you really want to do all the position swapping? Braun is a terrible 3rd baseman, but an incredible hitter. I heard he's taking 1000 ground balls a day to fix his defense over the winter though. I think he deserves another shot. Plus I think Bill Hall is a pretty good player still and that his postion move is what has made him uncomfortable and is it worth the risk to do the same to Braun. I say this because I'm a Twins fan and they tried moving cuddyer to 3rd, he went from a good offensive prospect to terrible offensively in the Majors. Moved him to right and he's averaged .270 20hr 90rbi the last 3 years (maybe only 2, pretty sure 3 though). Some guys just dont handle position swaps, that why I dont think they should give up on Hall yet, give Braun another shot and Hall another shot where there at, CF and 3b. Maybe Hall will get comfortable, otherwise if Weeks struggles again maybe try him there to gain some trade value atleast. They have Hart to take over CF if it doesn't pan out and there still will be plenty of teams who want to give Hall a shot in the infield. The Brewers have a good window here to win and I know Melvin is just trying to take the most advantage of it, but I'm just worried he may do too much. Plus Rolen is a huge injury risk , and the brewers can't afford to pay a guy that much and get hurt. cough Ben Sheets, cough

I guess my concern is do you really want to do all the position swapping? Braun is a terrible 3rd baseman, but an incredible hitter. I heard he's taking 1000 ground balls a day to fix his defense over the winter though. I think he deserves another shot. Plus I think Bill Hall is a pretty good player still and that his postion move is what has made him uncomfortable and is it worth the risk to do the same to Braun. I say this because I'm a Twins fan and they tried moving cuddyer to 3rd, he went from a good offensive prospect to terrible offensively in the Majors. Moved him to right and he's averaged .270 20hr 90rbi the last 3 years (maybe only 2, pretty sure 3 though). Some guys just dont handle position swaps, that why I dont think they should give up on Hall yet, give Braun another shot and Hall another shot where there at, CF and 3b. Maybe Hall will get comfortable, otherwise if Weeks struggles again maybe try him there to gain some trade value atleast. They have Hart to take over CF if it doesn't pan out and there still will be plenty of teams who want to give Hall a shot in the infield. The Brewers have a good window here to win and I know Melvin is just trying to take the most advantage of it, but I'm just worried he may do too much. Plus Rolen is a huge injury risk , and the brewers can't afford to pay a guy that much and get hurt. cough Ben Sheets, cough

The Brewers don't gain any salary relief by including Mench, because they'd otherwise non-tender him.

Give Braun a chance at third. He'll slow the game down, and be acceptable. not great, but not bad. It's not like Rolen was amazing his first year in the big leagues either, and now he's not too bad.

I think this could work out ok for both teams, but the Cards have GOT to find some offensive help anyway, especially if they get rid of Rolen. For what the Orioles are asking for Tejada and his 20 HR, I'm not totally sure thats the answer.

mykenk,

Rolen is one of the best, if not the best defensive 3rd basemen ever. To say he's "not too bad" is a HUGE understatement. Braun will have to come MILES to get league average...there is a big, big difference.

The acquisition of Rolen would make it easier for the Brewers to trade for Joe Nathan, which has also been rumored. It would make the loss of someone like Bill Hall or JJ Hardy easier to swallow.

I'm pretty sure I'm stealing this idea from Keith Law, but I would love to see the Brewers switch Weeks and Hall. With this trade you could have a very solid defensive infield with Rolen, Hardy, and Hall. There's also the potential for a good outfield with Hart, Weeks, and Braun. Plus, LaPorta is on the way, so if one of the players don't work out, there's a replacement in the wings. I understand MillerTime's concerns, but Braun is going to an easier position in left and should be more than athletic enough to handle it. Braun playing an average LF would make him even more valuable than he is now due to his crummy defense at third.

"The acquisition of Rolen would make it easier for the Brewers to trade for Joe Nathan, which has also been rumored. It would make the loss of someone like Bill Hall or JJ Hardy easier to swallow."

The Brewers will not and should not trade either one of those guys for Nathan who they'll only control for a year.

The Cardinals can really use Kevin Mench to platoon in that all-lefty OF (Duncan, Edmonds and Ankiel).

"Rolen is one of the best, if not the best defensive 3rd basemen ever. To say he's "not too bad" is a HUGE understatement. Braun will have to come MILES to get league average...there is a big, big difference."

I know, I was being sarcastic. I'm saying, his FP was under .950 his first year, and he got much better. Braun is NOT MILES away from league average. He makes very very few fielding errors, the majority of his errors are throwing errors, which will decrease as he gets more experience and slows the game down. Exhibit A: Rickie Weeks.

I'm not saying he's going to be Scott Rolen. He's a much more valuable player than Rolen.

"Braun is NOT MILES away from league average."

Yeah I don't know what you've been watching but he is.

And Weeks isn't a good example because he's still a bad defender.

I think that if this trade goes down, it has to be along the lines HL is talking. The Brewers may not be averse to raising payroll, but unless they trade a contract like Hall's in exchange for Rolen's, they're going to be commiting a large % of their payroll for the next 3 years to 1 guy who's a bit of an injury risk.

But, I don't think this trade happens because they're division rivals who both have intentions on winning next year. Usually the Crew are smart enough to avoid situations like that.

Also, if I were Rolen, I'd start thinking about moving to 1B, which obviously wouldn't happen in Milwaukee. He could still be an above-average defensive 1B.

BTW, the "smart enough" comment was supposed to go at the end of the first paragraph, not the second.

I card read good.

Also, if I were Rolen, I'd start thinking about moving to 1B, which obviously wouldn't happen in Milwaukee. He could still be an above-average defensive 1B.
------
Rolen's shoulder hardly impaired his defense at all last season. It's his offense that his shoulder affects, so moving to 1st would actually decrease his value because you'd expect less D and more O from 1st base than you would 3rd.

What happens then in two years when Matt LaPorta comes up? Move Braun back to 3B?

"What happens then in two years when Matt LaPorta comes up? Move Braun back to 3B?"

IF LaPorta actually does pan out then I'd trade Hall, move Hart to CF and Braun to RF.

"IF LaPorta actually does pan out then I'd trade Hall, move Hart to CF and Braun to RF."

laporta looks like the real thing to me.
and if this all goes down, I'd think about moving laporta to RF (depending on his arm) in the minors instead of moving Braun twice

Rolen is washed up. If I were the Brewers I wouldn't make this trade. I still think Capuano can bounce back, his past numbers show he is a 4.00 ERA pitcher, which is valuable. Maybe last years problems were just an aberration. Braun's defense can only improve. Oh, and did I mention Rolen is WASHED UP!

so Onley suggests the deal is close....
Haudricourt says they haven't even talked...
and I leaned from brewers.com that Melvin says he hasn't talked to the cardinals at all lately.

so someone is wrong or someone is lying.

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