In case you haven’t heard, Billy Beane made a major trade for his Oakland A’s last week. He got 2 quality starting pitchers for the #3 Rated prospect in baseball and another elite prospect. There’s more parts to the deal, but those are main players, and they get to the heart of the matter: Beane is going all in.
On one hand, there is something admirable about this: Oakland has people coming up for free agency and arbitration here very soon, and as a small market and budget conscious team, they probably can’t afford to keep all of those players. This is their time.
On the other hand, one of those players acquired, Jason Hammel, was a one year rental for Chicago, so he’s a free agent after this year, and as he’s having a good year, his price tag will undoubtedly increase from the 6 million he’s making this year.
Then there’s Jeff Samardzija. He’s a free agent after next year, and if he continues his strong performance, he’ll be due a large payday, one Oakland like cannot afford.
Also, remember that the A’s play in a pitcher’s park with a huge foul ball territory. This’ll enhance these two pitcher’s numbers, helping drive up their prices.
So chances are neither pitcher will be around after the 2015 season, and neither will Addison Russell, the #3 prospect in baseball.
It’s a heck of a gamble. I hope at the very least is pays off for Beane in the form of a League Championship, followed by a loss to the Cards in the World Series. (Sorry, I couldn’t resist.)
It’s also a gamble I hope the Cards don’t make IE trading our prospects for David Price. I like our prospects, and I think they deserve a chance over some of the players already on the team. (cough) Allen Craig and Mark Ellis (cough) (and yes I consider Wong a prospect until he plays everyday and gets a chance for steady play for a long period of time instead of 2 games on, 3 games off, 2 games on again, etc.)
So bravo to Beane. He’s got balls. I hope it pays off for him.