It’s only July 9th, and we’ve already seen two huge names moved. Today let’s round up the Rich Harden links.
- Susan Slusser says the A’s weren’t discussing Harden with any other teams. Jim Hendry was persistent for weeks, while Billy Beane has had his eye on Sean Gallagher for years (however, Buster Olney says this deal was pulled together within the last two days). Chad Gaudin was included in the deal as insurance for Harden. Slusser wonders whether Joe Blanton could be next to go.
- Rob Neyer is reminded of the Mark Mulder trade, and thinks the A’s might even be better this year from this deal. Similarly, Dave Cameron thinks the deal favors the A’s.
- Keith Law notes that no available pitcher had better stuff than Harden and that Gaudin is "an outstanding second player." He thinks the move to Oakland will help Gallagher and that Harden was at risk of breaking down at any time. He seems to consider it a fairly even swap.
- Joel Sherman sees a Kerry Wood/Mark Prior parallel here.
- The Phillies didn’t get involved due to Harden’s injury history.