It’s been a busy week since last Sunday, and with free agency officially beginning earlier this week, I’m sure we’ll have plenty more to come! Let’s take a look at some of the more notable stories of the week…
- I was completely shocked to see that Matt Holliday was acquired by the A’s on Monday. The A’s gave up a great deal of value, sending Greg Smith, Huston Street, and Carlos Gonzalez to Colorado for one year of Holliday. I don’t get this move unless the A’s aren’t done yet, or they’re planning on dealing Holliday again in July. I don’t feel that the move makes Oakland a contender, especially given how tough McAfee is on right-handed hitters. The Rockies, in my opinon, got a great package, and the A’s can either deal Holliday again or perhaps emerge as surprise contenders in the West, depending on what other moves they make. There’s been speculation that the Rox could turn around and deal Street immediately, with the Twins being mentioned specifically. We heard later that Colorado may just keep him as well, however. Here’s some more reactions to the trade.
- The Yankees made a surprise move as well, acquiring Nick Swisher and Kanekoa Texeira from the White Sox in exchange for Wilson Betemit, Jeff Marquez, and Jhonny Nunez. I like this move for New York, as Swisher could rebound nicely and be a big-time producer in New York, while none of the pieces acquired by the Sox offer overwhelming promise. This could push the Yankees out of the running for Mark Teixeira, which means more money to throw at the top free agent starters. Here’s some additional reactions.
- The Nationals acquired both Scott Olsen and Josh Willingham from the Marlins, in exchange for Emilio Bonifacio, and minor leaguers P.J. Dean and Jake Smolinski. It seems like the Marlins could have gotten more for these two, and a second baseman is a curious acquisition, with Dan Uggla obviously occupying that slot in Florida. Is a trade or a move to third base is on the way for him? I love this deal for the Nationals, giving them a little added power and even a league-average arm is an upgrade for their rotation. Olsen’s just 24, though his effectiveness has been going in the wrong direction. Still, it seems like a pretty unspectacular return for a young left-handed pitcher and an affordable outfielder who can hit for respectable power. Here’s more reactions for this one.
- The Cubs also acquired a Marlin this week, when they traded Jose Ceda for Kevin Gregg. This is another one I don’t get at all. It seems like this makes it a guarantee for the Cubs to part ways with Kerry Wood, and while Carlos Marmol can take on the ninth inning with ease, Gregg won’t offer the same security for the eighth inning that Marmol did. Gregg/Marmol is hardly the 1-2 punch that Marmol/Wood was. Wood even said he would do anything to stay in Chicago, including signing a one-year deal. Ceda put up very good numbers at AA this year, and seems like far too great of a price for Gregg. A year ago, Ceda was deemed "untouchable" even in a trade for Brian Roberts. Now he’s being dealt straight up for Gregg? I don’t get the thinking here. Here’s the additional reactions.
- The Yankees made an outrageous, six-year, $140MM offer to C.C. Sabathia. Can he really turn that down?
- A few signings this week, as the Yankees brought back Damaso Marte at a cheaper price (3 years, $12MM) and the Phillies also brought back a lefty reliever – Scott Eyre. Eyre will get a one-year, $2MM deal. Both seem like solid signings to me.
- A few other reliever notes: Trevor Hoffman is likely done as a San Diego Padre. It’s hard to imagine, but it looks like he’ll be pitching elsewhere in 2009. Here’s a recap of the whole situation. The Brewers could be a fit for Hoffman, considering their best option is off the table. Salomon Torres announced his retirement (again) this week.
- Once again, just to put Dodgers fans at ease… Russell Martin isn’t going anywhere.
- A few notes for Twins fans: Bill Smith doesn’t understand where the Delmon Young trade rumors came from, but also doesn’t affirmatively say he won’t be traded. It’s been speculated Young could be moved for a third baseman, but that may not be necessary, because they’re reportedly preparing to make an offer to Casey Blake.