Saturday, January 7, 2012

Transaction Reaction: Anthony Rizzo for Andrew Cashner

The Cubs sent RP Andrew Cashner and OF Kyung-Min Na to the Padres for 1B Anthony Rizzo and P Zach Cates.

  • At first glance, this looks to be a steal for the Cubs, and it's hard to see what the Padres' front office hopes to gain through this deal. Rizzo was a hot commodity that other teams were begging for, and it is hard to believe this is the best package a competitor was willing to offer. If patience is a virtue....what is selling off huge talent for peanuts?
  • It was obvious after the Padres would be looking to move Rizzo after bringing in Yonder Alonso in the Latos deal. In my eyes, this deal is so bad for the Padres that it actually weakens the return they received in the Latos trade. To clarify, the Padres gave up a pseudo-ace pitcher to the Reds and received a studly young bat that plays a corner IF position, which the Padres already had in Rizzo. (They also got Volquez, which was solid.) Bringing in another studly, corner bat was not a bad thing because it offered the Padres flexibility and created a VERY talented surplus. Having two young, top-tier bats could be useful to flip for almost anything they wanted. By missing the mark and only obtaining Cashner and a low-ceiling OF, they went backwards. They are in a worse place now than if they would have just held the surplus in hand, or if they would have kept Latos until they found a better package. The chain of events from the Padres front office looks confusing and underwhelming to say the least, with the usual caveat - Maybe the Padres know something about Cashner or Rizzo that no one else has figured out yet. (If this is the case, we will be praising this deal in 2017. Please do not attempt to hold your breath for this length of time.)
  • From the Cubs' perspective, it seems like a great play. The Cubs already had Bryan LaHair in the minors and many analysts thought he would be crucial to the rebuilding project given his huge triple A numbers. However, LaHair is already 28 while putting up those numbers, and no one really knows how long it will take for the Cubs to be relevant again. Enter Anthony Rizzo. Rizzo was almost equally as impressive in triple A when looking at league neutral stats, and he even got a cameo in the big leagues. The difference is that Rizzo is SEVEN YEARS YOUNGER. Holy cow.... See: upside.
  • (And do not fret loyal Cubs fans clamoring for Lahair. This still leaves the Cubs the option of working Lahair's bat into the lineup at one of the corner outfield spots. Both of these guys will hit, and they could be squeezed into a young lineup also featuring the newly acquired Ian Stewart.)
  • All of this potential, and the Cubs didn't have to give up much.... A young, enigmatic Cashner who will probably end up as nothing more than a right-handed reliever. Right-handed relievers also happen to be the easiest and cheapest thing to acquire in baseball. As we saw in the World Series during the late innings, the Rangers and Cardinals each have about 6 of these "Cashners" on their respective rosters.....only the "Cashners" we saw in October have much better control and less of an injury history than the 25 year old, actual Andrew Cashner. Obviously there was also a throw-in on each side, but neither of these players look like they will tip the scales in either direction.

No comments:

Post a Comment