I've figured out the Reds' left field situation. I've spent a lot of time on this blog touting guys from Juan Rivera and Andruw Jones to Jonny Gomes and Drew Stubbs (this morning). But now, I've got it.
Here's how it started: Watching Adam Rosales over the weekend was a real treat. I then started wondering if maybe Rosales keeps his job when Eddie is healthy. Could the Reds move Eddy to left? That's a tough sell in the middle of the season. (I don't think a minor league rehab assignment would give him enough time to get ready.) Plus, Eddy hasn't really been that big right-handed bat that the Reds need. He just signed for two years, so they're not going to bench him. The one thing he has done well is walk. And what do you think of when you think of walks? The Oakland A's. Moneyball wasn't really about on base percentage like everyone says, but the A's do like OBP. And who do the A's have at 3B? Chavez, who hasn't been healthy the last couple of years, Nomar, who's currently on the D/L, and to some extent Bobbie Crosby because they've got no other spot for him.
More importantly, who do the A's have in left? A slow starting Matt Holiday. It was a bit of a shock when the A's traded for Holliday. He's a free agent next year and a Scott Boras client, so you know he's hitting the market next year with no home-town discount. Because it was Billy Beane, everyone praised the move. At least the A's could trade Holliday to a contender or get the draft picks when Holliday walks at the end of the year. How would this look:
That's a much-improved line-up.
But Holliday is off to a slow start you say? And he can't hit outside of Coors Field. Well GABP is practically Coors Light.
So here's the deal: Reds send Eddy and a pitching prospect (in addition to walks, the A's love pitching depth) for Holliday. Eddy plays third for the A's and Holliday plays left for the Reds. Because it's 2009, we have to look at the money. Eddy only makes $2 mil this year and Holliday makes $13.5 mil. But Eddy makes $4.75 mil next year and Holliday is a free agent. This is a big bite for the Reds, but they had the money to trade for Jermaine Dye (reportedly) who makes $11.5 mil with a $1 mil buyout. Plus, when Holliday walks, the Reds have more payroll flexibility and the two draft picks for Holliday. Plus, if they do fade they can trade Holliday to a contender. But the Reds need to make this move now. Waiting won't give them full value for Holliday, and they need to make the trade before Holliday turns it around. (He'll do that faster getting back to the N.L. and another great hitters' park.)
As far as the pitchers, Bill Bray would probably do it, or they could send Daryl Thompson to the A's. Or they could send Josh Roenicke or Zach Stewart. The A's love those kinds of guys.
Let me know what you think of this trade idea.
Mike Mussina, Hall of Famer
4 weeks ago