After the Holliday blockbuster last night, another trade has happened. The Marlins have traded Josh Willingham and Scott Olsen to the Nationals for second base prospect Emilio Bonifacio and 2 other minor leaguers, shortstop Jake Smolinski and pitcher PJ Dean. The Marlins needed to clear salary this offseason, and they have done that by trading Mike Jacobs, Willingham, and Olsen already. I’m going to say it right away: the Nationals won this trade by a large margin. Willingham is a solid left field option; Olsen is an OK #4 starter. They gave up only Emilio Bonifacio whom is probably going to become the Willy Tavares of second base, a middling pitching prospect, and a decent shortstop prospect. Finally, a good move by Jim Bowden. I have no idea what the Marlins were thinking on this trade. I’m not upset they traded Olsen; he had to go. I’m not thrilled with it but I can understand why they traded Willingham. I’m more angry that they didn’t get anything back they could use. Current second base prospect Chris Coghlan is just as good if not better than Bonifacio. With Hanley Ramirez locked in at shortstop, there’s no need for Smolinski. The pitching prospect is decent, but that’s all they could use in this deal. To me this was a waste of players by the Marlins. It was clearly a payroll motivated move. The two good things we can take from this is that the trading season has officially started, and that Jim Bowden is not mentally insane. At least, I don’t think so.
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