OK....so everyone had Matt Holliday traded to the Cardinals or Phillies in packages that bordered on the obscene if the rumored trades were actually discussed. Yesterday, we learned that the Rockies traded Holliday to the Oakland A's for a package believed to include closer Huston Street, SP Greg Smith and OFer Carlos Gonzalez.
I can understand trading Huston Street. But, didn't the king of Money Ball just deal his three best starting pitchers, Dan Haren, Rich Harden, and Joe Blanton, in the last year to begin a rebuilding process? And now he trades FOR Matt Holliday? I don't get it. Especially when you consider Holliday is a free agent after the 2009 season, Scott Boras is Holliday's agent, and he ALWAYS has his clients test the market.
So, don't believe any story you read where Beane is looking to sign Holliday long-term, or thinks he can compete this season. He will be dealing Holliday for a better package than he just gave up come July 31st.
There are also reports that Dan O'Dowd will look to flip Street to a team looking for a closer. I see the Brewers, Mets, Cardinals amongst the teams looking for a closer or set up man. MLB.com's Thomas Harding concurred:
A source with knowledge of the situation also indicated to MLB.com that the Rockies are still intending to use Manuel Corpas as their closer, and indications are Street will be dealt.
And it sounds like Carlos Gonzalez could start in CF per Harding:
The Rockies gained flexibility because Gonzalez can play center field, which gives them added coverage should they trade Willy Taveras, the leadoff man and center fielder the past two seasons. The Rockies were prepared to put right-handed-hitting Ryan Spilborghs in center, but now they can place Spilborghs in Holliday's old spot in left. The Rockies also have one of their prospects, left-handed-hitting Seth Smith, bucking for outfield playing time.
In other trade activity, the Washington Nationals traded 2b Emilio Bonifacio and two minor leaguers for SP Scott Olsen and OFer Josh Willingham. On the face of it, this deal favors Jim Bowden and the Nats. He gets a solid young SP in Scott Olsen and a power hitting OFer in Willingham. Willingham could also play 1b if Nick Johnson isn't healthy, which is likely, but he is coming off a back injury, so I wonder if his power will return.
Does this mean Dan Uggla is on his way out of Florida?? I think it's very possible he will be dealt, possibly to the Dodgers, DBacks, or Braves(if they deal Kelly Johnson). Bonifacio is a speedy slap hitter who plays excellent defense at 2b. He could leadoff for the Marlins should they drop their stud SS Hanley Ramirez to the 3rd spot in the order where he belongs. Should Bonifacio leadoff, look for him to steal 40-50 bases if he can get on base consistently. As a result, HanRam should see an increase in RBI chances, the expense of a drop in stolen base opportunities.
This leads me to wonder if HanRam's value will drop if he hits 3rd in the Marlins lineup?