The Giants are considering some of the top names on the free agent market. Guys like CC Sabathia, Rafael Furcal, Orlando Cabrera, Casey Blake, Joe Crede, and Orlando Hudson are possible players the Giants could have interest in. The goal is to upgrade the infield where there is no sure thing. A couple of young, decent players are on the team, but they really need a veteran. Emmanuel Burres could be a solid middle infielder. Pablo Sandoval could take a corner position. John Bowker is decent and so is Kevin Frandsen. Overall, I think they just have to add somebody.
Sabathia makes some sense as they could then deal Matt Cain to the Brewers for Prince Fielder. Or just trade Jonathan Sanchez and head into ’09 with 3 stud pitchers. I talked in depth about CC to the Giants here.
Furcal would make a particually good aquisition. He could lead off for them and would really change their image as a slow, old team. I would shy away from Furcal, however, because of the price. It will take a lot of money to lure Furcal away from all the other teams seriously interested in him such as the Dodgers, A’s, Royals, Cardinals, and Blue Jays.
Cabrera would be easier to sign than Furcal, but he doesn’t do much anymore. Yes he can play good defense and hit for a decent average, but he has no power and little speed. It might be a better idea to save the money for a different position and continue playing Frandsen and Burres everyday.
Blake and Crede could be solid additions as well. I would rather pursue middle infield help, though. Pablo Sandoval is a pretty solid prospect. I know he could move to first if there is a third baseman aquisition, but he would then block top prospect Akinori Iwamura.
Hudson is the one that makes the most sense to me. There won’t be many serious bidders for him; only the Cardinals and Indians seem truly interested. Both teams have other big holes, so it wouldn’t be that hard to make them shy away to fill a different hole. Hudson would make a very nice aquisition for San Fran.
The Giants don’t have to get the infield bat via free agency, however. They could always just trade Jonathan Sanchez for an infield bat. They might even make a signing and a trade. Sign Furcal and trade Sanchez for Kelly Johnson. Just like that you have a middle infield. Whatever they do, it will be tough to compete in 2009 unless the Dodgers screw up in free agency.
It seems like the Marlins will make slugging second/third baseman Dan Uggla available this offseason. There will probably be tons of suitors. Lets check them out.
Cardinals (frontrunners) Bryan Anderson for Dan Uggla. This trade just makes too much sense for both teams. The Marlins get a catcher significantly better than Matt Treanor and open up a position for the fast, good defensive Chris Coghlan. The Cardinals get the bat they want to protect Albert Pujols, and Bryan Anderson has no role on their team because of Yadier Molina. I’d be surprised if either team got a better offer for their player.
Indians (frontrunners) They also have a catcher they could trade. They would be reluctant to do it, but Kelly Shoppach could get a deal done for both sides. I explained how it made sense for the Marlins above, and it makes sense for the Tribe, too. They’d have to be 100% sure Victor Martinez is healthy or else they shouldn’t do the deal. Dan Uggla can play either second base or third base, so it gives them even more flexibility as to who they will sign. This trade also makes sense.
Marlins (frontrunners) Unless they can get a good, young catcher in return, it might make more sense to trade Jorge Cantu or Mike Jacobs instead. Both players could bring back a hard throwing pitching prospect: the kind of player the Fish are looking for. Plus, it improves the defense by moving Jorge Cantu to first base or another team. If they want to build around pitching, defense, and speed it makes sense to move someone other than Uggla.
Twins (possible) If the Marlins are willing to take young pitching for Uggla, then the Twins are a good fit. They could offer one of their young guns and play Uggla at third base. I don’t know if the Marlins would do this trade, though.
Giants (possible) It is pretty much the same thing here as with the Twins. If the Fish will take pitchers, the Giants could trade Jonathan Sanchez for him. If the Marlins don’t accept starters, then Uggla won’t be in a Giant uniform next year.
A’s (possible) It’s possible the Marlins would rather have hard throwing prospects instead of proven young pitchers. If that is the case, don’t be surprised to see Uggla heading down to the bay area. The A’s could play him at second base until Adrian Cardenas is ready, then they could move him to third base. This makes sense for the A’s, but maybe not the Marlins.
Dodgers (possible) They could offer James McDonald. He’s not the best prospect, but could get the deal done with an added player and poor offers for Uggla. Or, the Marlins could decide to keep him and trade someone else.
White Sox (not likely) They would be interested, but I don’t see them giving away their farm for another slow player. I don’t know if they could even pull off a trade. They’d be much more interested in Brian Roberts.
Is it possible the Brewers would consider trading Prince Fielder this offseason? I don’t think he’ll be traded, but could be shopped around for the right arm. There is only one destination I think he could possibly go: San Francisco. If the Giants would trade Matt Cain, which I said they could consider here, then there could be a match. The Brewers would love to get their hands on Cain, whom is signed at 13.15 million through 2011 (assuming the 6.25 million option for ’11 gets picked up). So, he’s dirt cheap. Fielder’s salary is on the rise, however. He is arbitration eligible for the first time next year, and I wouldn’t be surprised if he got more than the 10 million Ryan Howard got last year to set a new arb. record. Fielder is a better player than Cain, but because of salaries and position scarcity, the Giants may value Cain more than Prince. That doesn’t mean the Brewers would love the trade, either. This may be one of the few trades where neither team would accept. It could possibly work, especially if the Giants can lure CC Sabathia to San Fran. The Brewers may be forced into making the trade if they can’t find a good match for JJ Hardy. But, if the Giants get a great offer for Jonathan Sanchez, then they probably wouldn’t do it. I doubt the Brewers trade both Fielder and Hardy, probably only one. Same goes for Cain and Sanchez, only one. This is a trade that could happen under the right circumstances.
This is a post where you can click on any tag you want to. It will be a side-bar link.
I am going to make a trade market post, where I put down all the meaningful players on the trade block. I will put this in order of how good the players are the same way I did it in the Free Agent Market series. There will be a link on the players I have done in my player market series. Any player already traded will be underlined. This will be a sidebar link.
- Bengie Molina
- Jarrod Saltalamacchia
- Gerald Laird
- Kelly Shoppach (If the Indians keep Victor Martinez at catcher)
- Ramon Hernandez
- Prince Fielder
- Ryan Howard
- Mike Jacobs
- Garret Atkins
- Dan Uggla
- Brian Roberts
- Kelly Johnson (Only if Braves rebuild)
- JJ Hardy
- Jack Wilson
- Matt Holliday
- Rick Ankiel
- Randy Winn
- Josh Willingham
- Juan Pierre
- David DeJesus
- Rick Ankiel
- Randy Winn
- Juan Pierre
- Brian Giles (Only if the club option gets picked up)
- Rick Ankiel
- Randy Winn
- Roy Halladay (Only in the Blue Jays decide to rebuild)
- Jake Peavy (Only if blown away)
- Zack Greinke (Only if blown away)
- Matt Cain (Only if blown away)
- Nick Blackburn (Only for a good, young hitter)
- Edwin Jackson (Only him or Sonnanstine)
- Jonathan Sanchez (Only for a good, young, hitter)
- Andy Sonnanstine (Only him or Jackson)
- Scott Olsen
- Huston Street
- George Sherrill
- Ron Mahay
- Kevin Gregg
- BJ Ryan
You can see there are not many so far. I will update this as I think of more.
The Milwaukee Brewers are probably not going to be as good in 2009 as they were in 2008. Their top two starters: CC Sabathia and Ben Sheets are both free agents. They have a few holes. They need one arm in the rotation, and one or two in the bullpen, as well as a center fielder. They have a good trade chip in JJ Hardy and could possibly entertain trading Prince Fielder. They need to open up spots for top prospects Alcidies Escobar and Mat Gamel. Hardy is more likely to be dealt because his bat would be easier to replace than Fielder’s. Plus, a lot of other good first baseman could be on the market with Mike Jacobs and Ryan Howard in trades and Mark Teixera and Jason Giambi on the free agent market. There should be a huge market for Hardy, with only two above average shortstops avalable via free agency. I have previously said that JJ Hardy for Nick Blackburn would make sense, and I still believe that. Another possibility is Hardy to the Oriols for George Sherrill and Daniel Cabrera. Or to the Blue Jays for maybe Shaun Marcum or Dustin McGowen. The Brewers could always add a piece to make it work. To the Royals for David DeJesus or Ran Mahay and a piece. To the A’s for one of their several pitching prospects. Or maybe for Huston Street instead. To the Giants for Jonathan Sanchez. Or the Dodgers for Scott Elbert or Justin McGownen and a bullpen piece. There are many options. They should pick up the option on Mike Cameron. 10 million is a lot for him, but they have a lot of money to burn and could afford him. I think they’ll spend a lot of money on their bullpen as well. Although, they did that last year and it didn’t work. They could look into resigning Sheets, but Sabathia has no chance of coming back. If they resign Sheets they could be just as good as they were last year, with Yovani Gallardo coming back from injury. The Brewers can still be a very good team in ’09, probably just not as good as they were in ’08.
The San Fran. Giants need to rebuild! They have been a bad team for a while now, but their bad GM Brian Sebean continues to try to fix this team in free agency. That is not going to work. I think he will sign Joe Crede. I don’t think he should, but he will. This team has a great nucleus of young pitching with Tim Lincecum, Matt Cain, and Jonathan Sanchez. That part of this team is done. What they need is offense. They have several holes in that department. They have no on at shortstop or third base. The outfield is good, though. They have the young Fred Lewis and the last year’s free agent signee Aaron Rowand. They also have a pretty good right field prospect in Nate Shierholtz, and should trade Randy Winn in the offseason to make room for him. Also, they could trade catcher Bengie Molina to fill a need. The Winn trade would be more of a salary dump. This team’s plan is a lot like the Mariners plan. They have to not sign any major free agents, and trade away part of its team to open up room for the younger players.