If you take a few minutes and rummage through yesterday’s two big trades, it’s hard to find a way either will hurt the Mets. In fact, both should only help them.
Let’s take a look…
Matt Holliday (COL) traded to Oakland (reportedly) for Huston Street, Carlos Gonzalez and Greg Smith
1. It keeps Holliday away from NL rivals, namely the Phillies and the Cardinals, and the Mets probably didn’t have enough to trade for him
2. It weakens the Rockies, who, despite a disaster in ’08, did make the World Series 13 months ago
3. It puts Street on the active closer market (he was probably available on the A’s, but reportedly the Rockies are looking to move him)
4. The A’s are unlikely to re-sign Holliday in 2010, putting his bat on the open market next offseason
5. If it doesn’t out for Oakland, he may be available in July
1. The Mets didn’t acquire Holliday, a three-time all-stars and one of the five best hitters in the NL
2. According to several reports, the Rockies got a haul, and probably retooled for the not-too-distant future
Josh Willingham and Scott Olsen (FLA) to Washington for minor-leaguers P.J. Dean, Jason Smolinski and Emilio Bonifacio
1. The deal weakens the Marlins in the short-term, removing a 20-HR bat from their lineup and a starter with a 4.00 ERA from their rotation
2. The Marlins hardly received an overwhelming package â€” P.J. Dean is a 20-year-old low Class A pitcher, Bonifacio is a speedy second baseman with no power and little history of success with the bat and Smolinski is a 19-year-old Class A second baseman
3. The deal signals the Marlins are still shedding payroll; both Willingham and Olsen are both now arbitration eligible
1. It clears the logjam in the Marlins outfield and rotation
2. The Nats should become a more formidable foe
3. The Met hitters won’t have Olsen the Marlin to beat up on anymore (Olsen is 1-5 with a 4.74 ERA vs. the Mets during his Marlin career)
Final thought: One thing I’ll say…If the Rockies-A’s trade is real, Street, despite a rocky ’08, is almost as strong a potential closer for the Mets as K-Rod and Brian Fuentes. He has a high strikeout rate in his career (more than one per inning), has a superior WHIP (1.07 career) and simply doesn’t give up home runs (18 in 269 career IP).
Street is a classic buy-low case. The Mets could try to deal for Street â€” who made just $3.3 million last season and has two more years yet before he hits free agency â€” and save their money to fill holes in the rotation, the outfield, the bench, and the ‘pen.
Again, we shall see…