The Braves have aquired pitchers Javier Vazquez and Boone Logan from the White Sox for catcher Tyler Flowers, shortstop Brent Lillibridge, third baseman Jon Gilmore, and pitcher Santos Rodriguez. I like this deal a lot for both teams.
The Braves get the established starter that they want to add. Vazquez is more of a #3 or #4 starter rather than the #1 or #2 they wanted to add, but he is a solid addition nontheless. Atlanta has stated that they want to add two starters, anyway. This guy seems more like the second tier aquisition.
Javier Vazquez had a down year; his ERA was 4.67. His other stats were still solid, however. He threw 200 strike-outs and 200 innings despite his ERA. I think the most likely reason for his poor performance was bad luck; his BABIP was second highest in the MLB. If Javy just continues doing what he has already done, he will really nice pick-up for the Braves. I love this move for them because I truly believe he can bounce back.
I still like this trade for the White Sox, but I’m confused on their direction. They have already dealt two veterans, Vazquez of course and also Nick Swisher. If the Sox are trying to compete, I don’t know why they are trading these guys away. There has also been rumors swirling of Jermaine Dye and/or Bobby Jenks getting shipped out as well. I’m at a loss.
On the package of players they got, I think the Sox recieved a great haul. Tyler Flowers is one of the best catching prospects in the game. If they want to, they could move him to left field or DH eventually because they have AJ Pierzynski at catcher and Flowers’s defense is awful. He will be a great hitter no matter where he plays. Brent Lillibridge comes in and brings depth to the second base position. (I think Alexie Ramirez is definately moving to shortstop) The two other prospects they recieved aren’t bad; they are solid C prospects. I like this haul, just confused why they wanted it over an established starter like Vazquez.
Replacing Javy will be tough. The White Sox depth at starting pitching was tested last year because the starters they called up once Jose Contreras went down were very ineffective. Now one of them will be starting the season in the rotation. An additional transaction will have to be made in order to accommodate for the loss of Vazquez.
My letter grade for the Braves: B. My letter grade for the White Sox: C.
It is looking more and more likely that the Braves are going to be big players for Jake Peavy this winter. They have the need, the money, and the prospects to get a deal done. The popular package right now would be the Padres sending Jake Peavy along with Khalil Greene to the Braves for Tommy Hanson, Yunel Escobar, and Jordon Schafer. The Padres add a great pitching prospect, their shortstop of the future, and their center fielder of the future all in one deal. The Braves bring in an ace under team control for many years. They also add a player in Greene that might be extra motivated in his contract year to replace Yunel Escobar. If he has a good year, he might even want to resign with the club since they play on the east coast. If not, the Braves still have Brent Lillibridge waiting in the wings. It will hurt for them to lose those three great young players, but they’re all expendable to certain degrees. Because of Jason Heyward, Schafer would be moved to a corner possition, anyway. He wouldn’t be very valuable there. Tommy Hanson is a great pitching prospect and is very under rated, but the Braves are good at drafting, so they could replace him with the right picks. Escobar is replaced by Greene and Lillibridge. So it hurts losing these guys, but to bring in a legitimate ace under contract for four years, it’s worth it. These teams could both get cold feet and decide not to make the trade, but it sure could happen.
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