Colby Rasmus’ Trade Value

9 10 2010

Rasmus' .860 OPS and .366 wOBA were first among full-time NL CFs

Posted by D-Dizzle

Ok, so it has been around the baseball news recently that several teams will pursue the center fielder Colby Rasmus.  Well great, but guess what? He won’t be cheap.  In fact, it will probably take an overwhelming package for the Cardinals to even move him in the first place.  Let’s begin there, shall we?

1.  The Cardinals have no real successor to Rasmus in center field.  If they move him, that just opens up another hole in a lineup that already has holes at third base, shortstop, and second base.

2.  Rasmus is a cost-controlled player.  This isn’t a one year or 1.5 year rental like we’ve seen with some other recent blockbuster caliber trades.  he has *4* years of team control remaining with still one year to go until he reaches arbitration.  What does that mean exactly? Well, it means even the small market teams with budget constraints will be in on Rasmus, thus driving the price up even more.

3.  Recently, FanGraphs did a piece on players who they feel have the most trade value.  Note, that isn’t a list of the best players in that order, rather they take everything into consideration (age, contract status, performance, project performance, etc).  Rasmus was rated at #14,  just ahead of Robinson Cano and behind David Wright.  Granted, this list was made during the season and some of these can be debated, but I think for the most part, it is a pretty accurate listing.

Rasmus is one of the few 5-tool center fielders in baseball

4.  My favorite, the UPSIDE.  Quick, tell me one other center fielder in NL  this season with a higher OPS than Colby Rasmus.  Too late, The correct answer?  There is none.  Rasmus had the highest OPS among all center fielders in baseball this season.  He turned 24 during the season and still has lots of developing to do still.  Science even shows that the human brain doesn’t stop developing until the age of 25 for most males.  Other center fielders to have an OPS of .850 or better at age 23/24 recently:  Grady Sizemore, Carlos Beltran, Ken Griffey Jr, Jim Edmonds, Andruw Jones, and Vernon Wells.    Add in the fact he is also a 5-tool player.  In fact, in 2008, baseball America rated him as the #3 best prospect in all of baseball, and in 2007, had him at #5.  Some people are saying well we don’t want to give up Kyle Drabek, Julio Teheran, Travis Snider, etc because they have too much upside or are untouchable or whatever the reason maybe.  Well, guess what? That was Rasmus just a few years ago.  Now, he has done something that a small number of super-prospects do, live up to their hype (to an extent, as I have said, still some developing to do).

5. Competition.  That’s right folks, there isn’t going to be just one or two teams eying him.  Even the small market teams like the Royals to the big market teams like the Red Sox will show interest in him if he is available.  The sky’s the limit. Everyone can use a guy like him.  Small market teams with budget problems can fit him in their plans and large markets with holes in the outfield will show interest as well.  That means one very important thing: BIDDING WAR.

It would be difficult to set an exact value on him because there just have not been many Rasmus-type players traded in recent memory.  It is also unclear if the Cardinals would be seeking players already on a team’s MLB roster, prospects, or a mix of the two.  However one thing is for sure, he won’t be cheap.

Here are some trade proposals that I think would fit the bill:

To the Yankees for: Brett Gardner, Manny Banuelos

To the Braves for: Craig Kimbrel, Arodys Vizcaino, Omar Infante (one year until free agency)

To the Blue Jays for: Shaun Marcum, Zach Stewart

To the Marlins for: Mike Stanton straight up

I think you can get a good feel for his value with these somewhat generic proposals.

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134 responses

15 10 2010
Ben

Listen, I know that Colby Rasmus is a very good, young player, but both the Braves and the Marlins would never even consider the trades that you think would be reasonable to receive Rasmus. The Braves are looking at Kimbrel as their next closer, even as soon as next season, and they see Arodys Vizcaino as a front line rotation man within the next three seasons, and Omar Infante is one of, or if not the best utility man in the league. The Marlins as well, will not trade Mike Stanton, especially straight up. They have been waiting for his arrival into the majors, and although is average did not seem promising, his power, especially to the opposite field, and his defense make him and Hanley Ramirez players to base their entire franchise around for the next 10 seasons. Colby Rasmus may be great, but not worth it for either the Braves or Marlins. I am not leaving them out of the equation of acquiring him, but the Braves and Marlins will not give those players up.

15 10 2010
Brian

Vizcaino could be traded easily by the Braves. I think the only minor league arm that is off limits would be Teheran. Typically the braves have been willing to trade their pitchers they pick up in trades like Vizcaino who they got from the Yankees.

I would HIGHLY doubt that Infante would be asked about in any trade talk at all. He’s not a prospect, and while he was an All-Star and had a career year, his career numbers don’t justify him as an everyday player, and he proved it down the stretch with a prolonged slump. He’s a great bench player, but teams are more inclined to take minor league players, not utility players in trade.

You’re more likely to see a trade with Vizcaino, Milligan/Harilchuck, Edward Salcedo & Robinson Lopez or something like that, with a minor league player tossed in from St Louis.

A 4 for 2 with all prospects coming in return makes more sense.

15 10 2010
Jay212033

Lopez has already been traded!

15 10 2010
Brian

Oops, was looking at an old prospect list, trying to pick someone lower in the top 30……still the points there.

16 10 2010
Tyler

No way the Braves trade Salcedo. They see him as the shortstop of the future. I think a much more realistic trade would be Rasmus for Jair Jurjjens and a minor leaguer. You should check out the article on ajc.com advocating a Jurjjens trade for a power bat.

15 10 2010
jah

Infante can go. They’d be selling high. Package him with Teheren (sp?) or a highly-acclaimed pitcher they know won’t pan out (like they seem to have a knack for).

15 10 2010
Jay212033

Sigh……..I’m not understanding why everyone thinks the Braves would trade Teheran!

15 10 2010
D-Dizzle

your contradicting yourself. you basically said that Rasmus might be great(did you read my article, best OPS among all centerfielders), but it wouldn’t be worth it for the Marlins and Braves because they are giving up too much. You make it sound like the players i proposed have done something great, which they havent.

16 10 2010
CAM

D-dizzle…. you are a d-dumbass if you think the Braves would give you the package you spoke of……….i was wondering if the Cardinals were throwing in Holliday or Pujols……a MORE realistic scenario would be for the braves to trade Jordan Schaeffer , Arodys Visciano and Cristian Martinez for Rasmus and a lower level position prospect..

16 10 2010
Nick

what did Braves give up for JD Drew to cards?? Oh yeah Adam Wainwright one of the best pitchers in baseball. Safe to say braves will give up anything

16 10 2010
d-dizzle

funny, i like how i can make a conversation without using profanity. You lost a lot of credibility. You also think i made those proposals without consulting some of my other friends about it first? they all gave their ceil of approval. Their giving up their 3rd or 4th best prospect, a utility player who has 1 yr left on his deal, and a good bullpen guy. Call me crazy, but i think you the dumbass here for not taking that.

-D

15 10 2010
Aaron

Any chance the Redsox are in on him? Could we expect an Ellsbury for Rasmus deal straight up?

15 10 2010
RH

No. Rasmus has a lot more upside than Ellsbury, and less service time. Rasmus also had a better season by far. Plus, Ellsbury has a bit of an injury history. Ellsbury plus something significant would be needed.

15 10 2010
Aaron

What about a prospect like Kalish (I personally don’t care to much for Ryan Kalish and hope the Sox sell high, like they failed to do with Reddick)

15 10 2010
cubs223425

@Aaron

I don’t think that Kalish is someone that would interest a team getting Ellsbury to add to Holliday, Allen Craig, and Jon Jay.

It would probably have to be a MI prospect or a pitcher, and the back-end of the rotation and the MI offense are their two biggest weaknesses at this time.

15 10 2010
Austin

I think the Cardinals would pass on Ellsbury. There would be no gain whatsoever.

15 10 2010
cubs223425

Well, they would gain in speed. They don’t have a good leadoff hitter, IMO, but Boston would definitely have to add to the deal.

15 10 2010
nightcrawler

i think that if the Red Sox were interested they would need to offer Lowrie and Ellsbury…that would fill the needs of the Cards. I don’t think it is all tht likely because the BoSox tend to like their young players.

15 10 2010
Rob

The indians could be an option, they could trade Michael Brantley, and a few other prospects possibly.

15 10 2010
RH

I agree with the Braves package you listed. That’s why I don’t see it happening. If the Cards would do that for Kimbrel and Infante, the Braves would have a charter on the runway at Hartsfield within the hour.

15 10 2010
cubs223425

Well, I doubt they trade a 24-year-old CF with good hitting abilities for a young bullpen arm and a year of a decent utility hitter. I think Boggs might be able to handle closer duties in the future, and they have Franklin for this season, so I’m not sure how much the Cardinals would want Kimbrel.

16 10 2010
CAM

kIMBREL IS OFF LIMITS , BUT NICE TRY……KIMBREL IS THE REAL DEAL!

16 10 2010
Bernard

#1 thanks for all the caps lock
#2 unless Kimbrel is Mariano Rivera 2.0 he really isn’t all that valuable. The Braves need OF offense a hell of a lot more than they need an unproven closer.

15 10 2010
Braves' Fan

Yeah, the Braves will jump all over that one. Sure they will.

15 10 2010
CraZyTRaDeMaN

Rasmus to the Braves for Craig Kimbrel, Arodys Vizcaino and Omar Infante

If you take the contracts of Kinshin Kawacrappy and Nate McOut that deal could work. No way would the Braves do that deal. Not with a big??? with Chippers return Omar is his Backup and Kimbrel is set to be the Braves closer next year. Vizcaino is the only player tradable in your scenario.

15 10 2010
D-Dizzle

You make it sound like Rasmus has a replacement for the cardinals. Listen, St. Louis is in the drivers seat on this. They have almost all the leverage and thats not even deniable or arguable in any way.

18 10 2010
jb5540

Huge Braves fan here – if the Braves were offered that deal and Wren turned it down, he should be fired on the spot. 24 year old CFers with an .850 OPS and a $400K salary don’t exactly grow on trees. Also, think about the future with 24 year old Rasmus and 21 year old Heyward as 2/3 of your outfield.

They would have to be insane not to give up a high-level (but not their highest) pitching prospect, a bullpen prospect, and a utility man that has proven time and time again that he can’t play everyday for Rasmus.

15 10 2010
Braves' Fan

Trade the third leading NL hitter, an All Star at that, the Braves closer of next season for a player that has already caused problems with the Cards and barely makes the Braves better while weakening their strengths? You really think Rasmus hits 23 HR at Turner Field?

Guess again. If the Braves deal for him, it will be with minor league talent (which the Braves have in spades). They won’t trade those two pieces for someone who is largely unproven and not worth that good a package.

15 10 2010
RH

Rasmus would not “barely” make the Braves better. He would address a glaring need (run production from the OF) without severely weakening the big club or the farm system.

I think Infante’s year was an outlier. Because he rarely walks and he doesn’t have much power, if he played everyday his numbers would probably look more like his career line pre-2010: .264/.423/.687. If he couldn’t play five positions he’d have a hard time making a major league roster.

Kimbrel may be a dynamite closer, but for how long? Three years? Five? K-Rod and Papelbon may already be on the downsides of their careers. Guys like Hoffman, Rivera and Wagner are extreme exceptions. Most closers flame out after a few seasons.

An everyday CF with power, plate discipline, and OF tools can carry a club for a decade.

15 10 2010
GoBraves

I agree that Rasmus would be an upgrade, but you’re kind of trying to have your cake and eat it too. You can’t say a guy (Rasmus) with a season and a half of MLB experience and a career line of .263/.334/.452 is a guaranteed star for ten years, and in the next breath say that Kimbrel and Infante’s proven numbers should be dismissed.

If you want to say that Rasmus is valuable for 4 years because of his low price, you can’t very well turn around and say Kimbrel is not valuable because he’ll only be good for 4-5 years (which would also be on the cheap). By the way, Kimbrel is 22…K-Rod is 28 (and hasn’t flamed out physically) and Papelbon is 29. Also, there’s no evidence that pitching as a closer leads to some sort of “flame out” 3-5 years later…more than likely, it’s usually just coincides with the pitcher getting old.

Also, as for Infante, your argument doesn’t make sense. He did play almost everyday (for the first time in years) this year and you’ve seen his line. By the way, even if you want to exclude 2010 (which I don’t think you should), a better line to look at is his last 3 years (not career) which is .309/.353/.411. Hard to say that’s not good.

15 10 2010
Jax

I’m a Braves fan, and I actually agree with you on this. I love Kimbrel, but the Braves have Venters and Moylan who could close, plus some $$ to spend if they addressed CF cheaply (Rasmus).

Losing Infante would hurt because our infield is unsettled (due to Chipper), but not a deal breaker.

And Vizcaino… well, we’ve still got a solid staff at the major league level, plus Teheran, Delgado and JJ Hoover waiting in the wings.

Assuming Rasmus is not a head case (not saying he is… just don’t know), I think I’d pull the trigger on that deal.

15 10 2010
Jamie Oakley

Have you seen the distance on some of Rasmus’s HR’s… He can hit them out of turner field trust me.

15 10 2010
Bernard

I look at those trade proposals you outline and I actually think you’re undervaluing Rasmus with those ideas. I should say I’m a Yankee fan, but if they were willing to deal Montero (and others) for 3 months of Cliff Lee you can certainly get more than Banuelos and Gardner from them. Now I don’t think the Yankees would seriously bid on Rasmus unless they could move Granderson (neither hits lefties well), but I think a reasonable package to expect would be Montero, one of Banuelos, Andrew Brackman and Dellin Betances (Banuelos is considered the safest, but probably lowest upside of the three) and lower upside, close to the majors arm like Adam Warren or Ivan Nova.

In terms of the Braves, why go after Infante? This was a career year never likely to be duplicated – Martin Prado’s success is more likely to be duplicated and is under team control for a number of years. I’d also look at Julio Teheran instead of Vizcaino (Vizcaino was injured most of ’10). Kimbrel (or Venters) seems like a good choice to target.

I would want more than Stanton back from the Marlins for Rasmus. Rasmus plays a great center field, Stanton plays a mediocre corner outfield – I’d want to get an arm too (Chad James? Jhan Marinez?) and I’d target the uber-underachieving Andrew Miller as a toss-in (he might be non-tendered) and see if Dave Duncan can help him find his talent.

With the Blue Jays, I’d be targeting Ricky Romero or Brandon Morrow for Rasmus long before Marcum…

I think a trade that would make sense for both teams would be Colby Rasmus to Boston for Jacoby Ellsbury (team control until 2014), Casey Kelly (ultra talented, had a down year), Junichi Tazawa (untapped upside, injury seems to have lost him his spot in Boston pecking order) and a low-upside corner OF likely to contribute immediately like Ryan Kalish.

15 10 2010
GoBraves

Ha. You want our best player last season and our best (and possible the best in the minor leagues) prospect (Teheran) and our closer of the future for Colby Rasmus?! Good luck with that. You’d have to give us two Jason Heywards (maybe 2.5) back for that haul.

15 10 2010
Bernard

Colby Rasmus, at the age of 24, was arguably the best center fielder in baseball last year not named Josh Hamilton.

Teheran is a fantastic prospect – but he hasn’t thrown a single pitch in the major leagues. The best prospect in baseball (assuming we’re talking players to not see any time in the majors last year) is almost certainly Mike Trout. Teheran had a respectable 3.38 ERA/3.30 FIP at AA this year, he’s only 19, of course, so those numbers are even better – but I don’t think many non-Braves fans are looking at Teheran as the best prospect in baseball.

The best closers are never as valuable as even a decent starting pitcher for the simple fact that they pitch too few innings.

Heyward is worth so much more than Teheran/Kimbrel/Prado it staggers the mind. He has the 5th best OBP through his age 20 season in baseball history. He’s a hall of fame sort of talent.

15 10 2010
cavebird

As a Braves fan, you bet. Infante is a good utility guy, nothing more. He is solid, but not great. He wasn’t our best player this season, he wasn’t even in the top 5. (Heyward, McCann, Prado, Hudson, Hanson, Wagner, etc.) It was Vizcaino listed, not Teheran (at least by the time I saw it), and he can be dealt. And we can replace Kimbrel, too. The Braves would jump on that deal. The Cardinals, however, would pass.

16 10 2010
CAM

Rasmus is a strikeout machine 148 so in 464 abs

15 10 2010
Aaron S.

Those proposals with the Yankees and Red Sox are over the top. Both packages you propose are not even remotely feasible. First, because you include players that would never be dealt for Rasmus (i.e. Montero and Kelly). I know the Yankees were willing to deal Montero at the trade deadline but that was for Cliff Lee, not a 24 year-old kid who potentially has clubhouse concerns and hasn’t proven enough yet to warrant giving up one’s best prospect. And the Sox are so high on Kelly (with little other high end pitching in their system) that they wouldn’t deal him straight up for Rasmus, in my opinion. Second, the total packages you propose are just far too much to give up.

Rasmus does have some value, I agree. A young pitcher plus maybe two additional players – either prospects or young but needed change of scenery types.

15 10 2010
Bernard

If the Yankees didn’t have Granderson and Gardner, they’d deal 6 years of Montero for 4 years of Rasmus in a heartbeat. Montero is an ELITE bat, but his long term position may well be DH. Many see him as more of a Carlos Delgado/Paul Konerko (catchers that became 1B because they simply couldn’t cut it as ML catchers).

Let’s not presume to know everything about how the Sox feel about Casey Kelly. Every team is high on every one of their prospects, if not how would you negotiate? Regardless of Peter Gammons’ propaganda, Casey Kelly had a poor year: 5.31 ERA, 7.67 K/9 and 3.32 BB/9. The walk rate is especially concerning and the strikeouts are not what was advertised of Kelly.

15 10 2010
Jay212033

There’s no way the Braves are going to trade Julio Teheran PERIOD!

15 10 2010
Bernard

#1: you aren’t Frank Wren.
#2: every single player has a price, if not an organization is foolish.

15 10 2010
mikerc

absolutely no way the jays would trade marcum and stewart for rasmus…marcum is the leader of the jays pitching staff and probably of the team….

stewart is considered by many to be better than drabek….

maybe one + mark rzepchinski

15 10 2010
Spencer

I think if Marcum and Stewart for Rasmus was on the table for the Jays, Alex Anthopolous would jump all over it. It’s a great deal for both teams, Toronto has so much pitching coming up through the system, they wouldn’t have much of a problem dealing those two.

Not too many people would rather Stewart, he’s looking more and more like a reliever, and he wasn’t even on BA’s Top 20 EL prospects published recently. While Drabek doesn’t exactly has ace material, he’s still a 5-star pitching prospect.

15 10 2010
Dave

Marcum and Stewart for Rasmus ? Heck yah! Two number three starters for a star center fielder ? With the added benefit of shifting Wells to Left ? Assuming we keep Bautista in RF.

Stewart though I have to admit has been ranked higher then Drabek at times (Sickels, BBA) so he could have a ceiling of a number 2. But you have to give value to get value. And having a ready excuse to shift Vernon to Left is worth a lot considering we have no one in our system for the next few years who can give reason for that shift.

I don’t agree with your Brett Gardner Manny Banuelos idea though. Brett Gardner is Melky 2.0 and on a normal team would fall considerably. If I was the Jays though, its tough medicine but it could cure a few weaknesses on the Club.

15 10 2010
Bernard

This is to Dave – Gardner is nothing like Cabrera. Not only is lineup protection a myth, but Gardner’s skill set is that of a poor man’s Carl Crawford. This year he actually had a better OBP than Crawford has ever had in his entire career. Gardner also has, possibly, the best strike zone control of any player in baseball – he has the highest rate of pitches seen per at bat of any player as far back as those statistics exist (the last 70s). The real key to Gardner though is his defense: he’s one of the top defensive outfielders in baseball, something no one ever accused Melky Cabrera of.

16 10 2010
Adam

AA does that trade in a second. Not because it’s a steal for the Jays, I actually think it’s a pretty fair trade, just because it plays right into the plan of young, controllable, high ceiling talent. If you consider the fact that Rasmus if he were to just duplicate the numbers he put up this year would improve the team in Average, OBP, Slugging and defence AND is only 24, that sounds like a good guy to have to me.

16 10 2010
The 5th Starter

I disagree, I actually think the Marcum + Stewart offer is completely reasonable. Marcum and Rasmus had nearly Identical WAR last year, and Rasmus has more upside, so Stewart would be added to compensate. It’s a well crafted offer that helps BOTH teams.

15 10 2010
Maddogg

Rasmus for Stanton straight up? Are you high? You must be. Also being a Blue Jays fan Marcum & Stewart is complete lunacy. You’re off your rocker kid. I’d give up Henderson Alvarez, Chad Jenkins, JP Arencibia, Jesse Litsch. I think that would get it done & if it wouldn’t I’d swap out Jenkins for Stewart & it would. Marcum’s worth that much, he’s amazing.

15 10 2010
Dave

I don’t agree with the Blue Jays perspective here. Alvarez and Jenkins are so far away from the majors its not worth a contending team (like the Cardinals) time since they wouldn’t help for another couple of years. I know we are Jays fans, so we aren’t familiar with this idea, but contending teams like to contend every year. especially with the uncertainty around La Russa and Pujols signing after next year. Marcum can help now and so could Stewart.

Marcum would fit very well behind Jaime Garcia in the four spot and then if Lohse could get his act together he could hold the fifth. Stewart would be an immediate upgrade over Franklin in the back of the pen, even if you ended up moving him to the rotation anyways.

And I feel you frustration, no matter how much you want to think it, no one wants Litsch, the Ginger bread doe boy has to much of an injury history. And JP would probably introduce you to Yadier Molina, perenial allstar and one of the best catchers playing right now.

So yes, your proposal makes sense in a way, but only if the Rasmus played for the Royals or the Orioles, not for a contender like the Cardinals.

15 10 2010
D-Dizzle

Kid? excuse me while i skoff.

if you don’t like the proposal, read the article and take it from the cardinal standpoint. why would they move him with no replacement? why would they want anything short of a massive haul for a player they don’t want to trade to begin with? The answer my friend is they wouldn’t trade him for anything short of that. Your package has more quantity than quality, which is bogus in the baseball world with how much prospects flame out, no go. gotta give to get.

-D

15 10 2010
Mark

As the article notes, the Cardinals are in the power position and will drive the deal. If they see an offer they like, they move him. If not, they have a future All-Star CF on the cheap, batting fifth behind Holliday – where he succeeded most in 2010.

Offers the Cards might like:

Braves – Teheran OR Minor, plus Kimbrel (Braves fans are overstating the value of a closer – you can go buy a closer on the FA market this winter, you cannot go get a legit, middle of the order bat for CF)

Blue Jays – Snider OR Drabek, plus a deal sweetener. (As good as Snider COULD be, he hasn’t shown it yet. Rasmus has and plays a premium position.)

Red Sox – Bard, Ellsbury and Bowden

Rays – Hellickson or Davis straight up

Brewers – Unlikely trade within the division, but Escobar and Gamel would warrant some attention. Brewers need a LH bat to replace Fielder and they need a CF – no, Lorenzo Cain is not Colby Rasmus, nor will he be.

15 10 2010
Mark

Mozeliak would have a field day if it came to it:

D’Backs – Drew and Parker for Rasmus and prospects

A’s – Green and Taylor OR Weeks

Orioles – Matusz straight up

Point being, realistic or not, Mozeliak can be a total prude if he wants to be. Unless Rasmus and TLR flat out refuse to work together, this is a win-win for the Cardinals. Pillage another team for what you want or suffer the consequences of having a 25HR, 90 RBI, 15-20 SB CF’r on your hands.

15 10 2010
Mark

GoBraves loves his team’s prospects :) If Frank Wren feels the same way, Nate McClouth will be the Braves 2nd best outfielder for the foreseeable future and Heyward and McCann will again be relying on protection from an aging Chipper Jones.

15 10 2010
GoBraves

Yeah, I like them, and I think most of the prospect ratings like them too. I think all of MLB knows that trading Teheran for Rasmus would be idiotic by the Braves. They could get the same (or more) for less.

I don’t mind the offer in this post…however, I think STL fans may be overrating Rasmus’s value. Some of these replies are asking for a Texieria-like haul for a guy that hasn’t shown that type of talent yet in his 1.5 seasons in the MLB.

15 10 2010
Mark

He has made steady progress, and would have probably hit the 30HR, 85 RBI mark as a second year guy – imagine what he could do for Fredi Gonzalez if he were out from under La Russa’s thumb?

And for the record, I prefer to keep Rasmus if TLR doesn’t come back.

But we are talking about a cost-controlled player who is making progress and shows all of the tools you want to see in a future All-Star. The only thing he lacks is concentration and you see that in any 23 year old kid.

So, while Texieria was a bigger name at the time, he was a rental. Rasmus will be an immediate roster centerpiece for the next 4 years. It’s not the 90’s anymore – cost-controlled, young talent is often times as valuable if not more valuable than the big names. Even if the Cardinals ate some of Holliday’s contract, I doubt he could fetch a bigger package than Rasmus at this point.

I agree that Teheran is a stretch. But last I checked, you have to deal from a strength to improve a weakness. The Braves have pitching depth, but aside from Heyward, McCann and maybe Prado, the 2011 offense looks bleak. With or without Teheran, the Braves pitching should roll in 2011 once again.

15 10 2010
Mark

I feel the Braves and Cardinals match up the best. I also see Rasmus having more success a couple hours from his hometown where he is obviously more comfortable, and I don’t see Fredi messing with his rythym as much as TLR does.

That said, this is one deal Mozeliak cannot get hosed on. If he is not getting legitimate, front line pitching or a future offensive centerpiece in the deal, then no deal. Rasmus can learn to be happy in STL.

15 10 2010
Jay212033

Mark, the Braves have to deal from strength but not be stupid as well.

15 10 2010
Mark

While I don’t agree with Rasmus for Stanton straight-up, I don’t think it is far off. The Cardinals have several guys with 8th/9th inning stuff (McClellan, Motte, Eduardo Sanchez (eventually) that they could throw in.

And who is to say Rasmus has to be the headlining name in the trade? Last I checked, the Cardinals could use guys like Wright, Zimmerman, Hanley, etc. – and a package of Rasmus + prospects could entice a team like the Mets or Nationals to take a flier on 2011 and look to 2012, while investing the money they save in younger guys to surround Rasmus with down the road.

15 10 2010
Purple_Haze

It’s pretty much beyond consideration that this would happen, but if Zimmerman could come in a deal, I would package together Rasmus + Matt Carpenter/David Freese + A reliever like Eduardo Sanchez. Think they would bite on that?

15 10 2010
Jonathan

You’ve left the Angels off your list of potential trade partners. They would likely package Napoli, Bourjos and a high minors pitcher or AAA/MLB middle infielder for Rasmus, freeing them from the Carl Crawford bidding war and allowing them to spend that money to pursue Adrian Beltre for 3B and bullpen needs.

15 10 2010
Aaron S.

And where would Napoli play? St. Louis has first base filled with Pujols and Napoli is not going to displace Molina behind the plate.

15 10 2010
D-Dizzle

why would they want Napoli? their best prospects aside from Trout is Conger and he is a catcher. they have Yadier Molina, i’m sure you’ve heard of him…

15 10 2010
Stlchris11

You guys are missing an obvious need for the cardinals, second base, Dan uggla would fill in nicely in the 5 or 2 hole in the birds line up and fill our need for a solid second baseman, rasmus for uggla and prospects.

15 10 2010
Mark

They could probably get Uggla without including Rasmus. Just depends how much they want him.

15 10 2010
Stlchris11

That would be my hope , then you could have rasmus and uggla in the line up uggla Albert Holliday rasmus ouch that stings

15 10 2010
Andrew Bailey

The Braves are not going to do a re-enactment of the J.D. Drew deal unless the Cardinals include Jaimie Garcia. In other words, it’s pie in the…

15 10 2010
Brian

JD Drew was a 1 year rental where as Rasmus is still controlled for 4 years so your statement makes no sense. The Braves NEED!!! Rasmus and will have to deal a pitching prospect or 2 to get him which as a Braves fan I am ok with. I’m tired of the Braves having the worst outfield in the league.

16 10 2010
Wes

I’m reading your ideas and it’s all reasonable if you look at it from your obviously biased angle. I have no idea who u r but I’m sure you’re a cardinal fan, all good. Anyway I’m a Rays fan and can look at my team and see several “cost controlled” 25 and under types. Price, Longoria, Jennings, Wade Davis, Niemanm ( he was hurt in the minors and developed later), Hellickson and John Jaso. I could list another 5 high upside youngsters but I ask you this. Would you take Garza and Upton for Rasmus? Garza has 2 more years of arb left and Upton , I believe, has one. You would probably be favored to win it all next year bit would probably lose both those guys to free agency. Honestly as a Rays fan I think that the reason these two haven’t put it all together yet is because they are in a haze of anticipation of their impending freedom.

15 10 2010
Josh

Nobody thought they Braves would trade Adam Wainright either, but…..

15 10 2010
Dennis

I’m a Blue Jays fan & if the cost of getting Rasmus was Marcum & Stewart, I’d take those guys to the airport myself – and I really like both those guys. Hell, if the asking price was Drabek + 1 more, I’d give it very serious thought. You have to give up quality to get quality & as AA has said, to compete in the AL East you need stars – Colby Rasmus has that kind of upside…I mean, he’s on the cusp as is.

16 10 2010
Matthew

You’re post is very intelligent. Most seem to be “Old guy” + “so-so prospect” for Colby Rasmus…a player with legitimate HOF upside. I’m not a Jays fan, but if I were: I’d do Drabek AND Stewart for a possible franchise cornerstone player like Rasmus. And…Toronto, with young arms like Romero, Cecil and Repwhathisname, has the depth to make that kind of trade.

16 10 2010
The 5th Starter

You guys are both spot on with this. Centre Field is one of the super-premium positions in baseball, and offense from that position is even more valuable. Anybody on the Jays should be available if Rasmus is on the block. They have pitching depth to spare.

15 10 2010
Stlchris11

Maybe the marlins would give us Josh johnson then he can beat the crap out of johnny cueto next time we fight the reds like he did to Morgan

15 10 2010
BleacherGM

How about the Tigers:

A Jackson & Ryan Perry for Rasmus…

15 10 2010
Aaron S.

Detroit won’t be trading the guy who very likely will win the AL Rookie of the Year Award this season. Overall potential wise he and Rasmus may be very similar players when you look at their careers as a whole once things are all said and done. And Jackson’s a year younger.

15 10 2010
Tomcat

Rasmus to the Royals for Soria, and Betemit

16 10 2010
Matthew

That’s one of the more realistic scenarios I’ve seen. Since it’s a seller’s market on CR, I suspect there would be a low-level minor leaguer or two in addition, but SL would have to at least look hard at that one…

15 10 2010
Ryan

How about Franklin Gutierrez and Jason Vargus/David Aardsma? M’s could use the bat, Cards maintain the WAR and fill a hole.

16 10 2010
Matthew

The Cards would want more youth than that. Sadly, the M’s have one guy they wouldn’t trade (Ackley) and a bunch of guys SL wouldn’t want (everyone else in the M’s minor league system). I don’t see a snowball’s chance on Venus for Seattle. Love to see Rasmus there (I’m from Boise), but I just don’t see them getting into this discussion after all the years of pissing away draft picks on garbage.

16 10 2010
Bernard

Hey don’t forget when they trade away starting pitchers, like Morrow who strike out nearly 11 per 9 innings in the AL East, for pennies on the dollar…

So at least they can draft well even if they can’t trade well…

17 10 2010
ryan

You can’t be serious about STL not wanting M’s prospects. The M’s are a top-ten farm system. Smoak, Saunders, Pineda, Franklin… you’re misinformed in Boise, Matthew. Your comment- and the follow up below you- smacks of unfounded bias and makes no sense. STL wants more youth? Aren’t they a team trying to stay in contention now? I don’t think they’re building for the future these days, at least not with that farm system. They’re trying to keep that party rolling. Maybe Gutierrez, Vargas, Aardsma aren’t guys they want, and maybe they aren’t sexy 19 year olds in A ball, but they deliver major league goods and they make sense. As far as the M’s not getting in the discussion, who are you fooling? On what grounds do you make these statements? Because they blew some draft picks? Is that your argument?

15 10 2010
Jay212033

If that’s what it took from the Braves then I’d do it in a heartbeat!

15 10 2010
Brian

That was my thought too. The big loss there is Kimbrel, but I could live with that.

I just doubt Kimbrel or Infante even enter into trade talks. If Infante does, all the power to them. He’s a great bench guy, and his versatility is good, but it can be found elsewhere.

16 10 2010
Tomas

If Rasmus were righthanded, I’d consider it…….But Kimbrel can really be awesome, and the Braves just lost their closer to retirement.

15 10 2010
Spydog

What about the Rays? I could see Garza/Bartlett for Rasmus as the core of a deal with Tampa Bay.

15 10 2010
Bernard

One year of a 31 year old Jason Bartlett has negligible value especially coming off a .254/.324/.350 season. I could see Garza/Jennings or Garza/Brignac/McGee as something that St Louis would at least seriously consider.

15 10 2010
Wilchiro

Rasmus had a great season, as shown by him leading CF’s in OPS, but is he really worth some of those packages? If so, the Cards better atleast listen to offers…

15 10 2010
Alstein

You think the cards would take:

Jurrjens+Infante?

15 10 2010
WAMCO

As a Jays fan I’d do Marcum and Stewart for Rasmus in a second. I think Marcum is already the 4th best pitcher on the Jats staff, and with Drabek almost ready to take his place, I would definitely do this. Guys like Rasmus don’t come available, ever. So if he was, I’d be all over this deal.

15 10 2010
Tomcat

To the Giants for J. Sanchez, Torres, and F. Sanchez

15 10 2010
nightcrawler

Nope. J Sanchez is showing his ability, FINALLY.

I think a real possibility (at least it should be) is a trade of 2 young Super Star capable prospects.

Colby Rasmus for Pablo Sandoval and possibly Nate Schierholtz.

Sandoval is going to be a very good player, fills a need at 3B for the Cards and fits nicely in the order behind Pujols and Holliday.

Rasmus fits the Giants better than Sandoval does. The Giants need speed and quality defensive outfielders. Rasmus could play CF and they would move Torres to RF. This makes them more athletic.

The Giants could fill 3B next season with a platoon of Mark DeRosa and Mike Fontenot. The Cards could fill CF with either skip Shumaker or Jon Jay with Schierholtz fighting for the RF job.

Each team gets a All-Star calibur young player with a lot of team control and they each fill the teams needs. Cards need another power bat, while the Giants need another outfielder and quality all around hitter that is more focused on OBP.

15 10 2010
Tomcat

The panda is intriguing but as a fat man who does not walk, has average at best defense and is coming off a .314 wOBA it seems unlikely he would be the return they are looking for. Schierholz cannot get on the field in San Fran he has little trade value.
Torres fills the CF hole nicely, and as he is coming off the best year of his career SF would be selling high, F Sanchez is a possibility but on second though I doubt he would be in the trade. Jonathan Sanchez fits the Duncan mold of trading velocity for control and sadly in a trade situation you have to give to get.

16 10 2010
Matthew

The Panda is a great story, but does not have a fraction of the upside of Rasmus. Sanchez would add a lot of interest to StL, I suspect, but they’d probably want at least one or two decent minor leaguers as well. It would be a great trade for SF, but SL should be able to much, much, MUCH more than Sandoval.

15 10 2010
Alstein

For the Jays one idea: Vernon Wells for Derek Lowe, Ed O’Flaherty and Nate McLouth?

Unsure if that’s good for the Jays though.

15 10 2010
Eric

in a heartbeat
especially if they’ll eat THE CONTRACT

16 10 2010
Alstein

You guys would be taking on salary in the short term, saving in the long term.

I might say take Kawakami also.

15 10 2010
Andrew Bailey

I was against the Drew deal (yes, I realize he was a one-year) rental and the Texeira deal because they both lacked foresight as this deal would — unless one is a Cardinal’s fan. If the Cardinal’s add Jaimie Garcia to the mix, I resume talking as I would be willing to add a minor league prospect or two.

15 10 2010
Mark in Memphis

I love all the “hindsight” on the Texeira trade.

If the rest of the team had performed in the second half the way they played in the first half (which was what was expected), they would have contended for the world title that year and the next.

But injuries and such hampered them. Texeira played as advertised.

We tossed the dice, took our chance and lost.

You pretty much have to play the game one of three ways:
1) You develop players in your farm system, selling good ones for prospects till you have enough of them come up to the majors at the same time for you to be “playoff competitive” (Tampa did it, Pirates are still trying to make it work…)
OR
2) You develop players in your farm system until you have a pretty good nucleus, trade some prospects for veterns and/or pick up some FAs when you are close to put you over the top (Atlanta)
OR
3) Trade farm system to win today and buy what you can’t trade for (Yankees)

Most teams are unwilling to spend the dollars for option 3. Most fans are unwilling to wait for option 1. And most fans will kill the team when optin 2 doesn’t work out.

It takes good prospects to get good guys because everyone (except maybe for the Pirates) are playing this game to WIN. You have to make it worth while to the other team or they will get “killed” (by the media, by the ownership, etc.)

The Braves bargin shopped this year. They gave up relatively little for Troy or Alex because they weren’t “high end” guys, but they were guys with relatively high “upsides”. You want to get folks with that are already showing their upside, you better have value to trade.

Back before the trading deadline, I would have liked to see the Braves pursue the Jay’s Bautista. He was playing OF, but he also had experiance at 3B (and we haven’t exactly been stockpiling third basemen for a while). In hindsight, I venture to say that our infield of Lee, Prado, Gonzales and Bautista (after Chipper went down) would have been pretty strong (might have even prevented Prado from getting injured). Even with the Prado injury, I think Infante would have performed much better at second than third and Conrad keep pinch hitting instead of starting.

But I shudder at the backlash of the fans at the Texeira-ish price it would have taken to get him (which, in hindsight Saltalamacchia was not going to play first or catcher for the Braves – or would have retarded Freeman’s arrivial-, shortstop Elvis Andrus was not going to “unseat” Escobar until maybe this year, Matt Harrison/Beau Jones are still in the minors and, yes, it would have been nice to have Neftali Feliz – but you couldn’t be sure at the time)

You have to spend “quality upside” to get “proven”…

15 10 2010
drumzalicious

For the Braves to get Rasmus they would have to give more ML talent than that. More than likely Prado and McLouth for Rasmus and a lower prospect. Prado and Rasmus are both cost controlled for a few more years. McLouth gives the Cardinals back a CF who showed signs of turning it around this year.

In the end though I doubt the Braves can get a hold of Rasmus. The Cardinals dont need Starting Pitching and thats all the Braves really have to offer. The SS prospect we got from the Jays might be of some value in a trade but he is a wild card at this moment and I doubt the Cardinals want an all glove no bat SS.

15 10 2010
Bernard

What the hell would the Cardinals want McLouth for? Why would they want to pay 6.5 million for a guy who went .198/.298/.322 this season? Let’s get serious with these offers…

16 10 2010
Alstein

They need a CF to fill the gap, and McLouth’s got a good shot at a bounceback.

16 10 2010
Matthew

The Cards would ask for Heyward. (Wouldn’t you?) The Braces would hang up. (Wouldn’t you?)

The discussion would be over.

16 10 2010
CAM

I keep hearing a reoccurring theme from Cardinal fans, they keep wanting a middle infield player “prado and infante are mentioned” …i think there’s desperation all right , but it comes from the Cardinal not the Braves !

16 10 2010
Alstein

Hmm, one possibility. A-Gon+Jurrjens for Rasmus.

Gives the Braves a big hole at Short, but Infante or Diory could fill as a stopgap.

15 10 2010
Pharryn

NYY wouldn’t have a problem including Gardner in the deal, but would have to give up significantly more than Banuelos. I would imagine that they would be hard pressed not to include Montero. Montero and Gardner would be very close to a deal, but NYY may not want to trade Montero considering Austin Romaine’s less than spectacular 2nd half and Posada’s age. If NYY offered Gardner, David Adams and Brackman would that be enough for St. Louis?

15 10 2010
Bernard

A few problems with that offer (from a Yankee fan): Adams isn’t all that good of a prospect and is coming off major ankle issues. Brackman is inconsistent and he’s actually kind of expensive as prospects go (he’s paid comfortably over a million next season) – ultra high upside but I think St Louis would prefer Banuelos or Bettances. As much as I love Gardner I’d do this offer in a heartbeat if I was Brian Cashman, which means it’s probably not a good trade for St Louis…

15 10 2010
Josh

To the Marlins for Stanton straight up? That’s so bonkers I don’t know where to start.

15 10 2010
D-Dizzle

ok, let me help you out.

read the article and realise you have to give to get. Both have superstar upside, both are very cost controlled, both play the outfield, your simply either overvaluing Stanton(which isn’t hard, he’s very good) or undervaluing what the Cardinals would want for Rasmus(read the article, not just the proposals and it will make more sense).

-D

16 10 2010
Matthew

Stanton is not equal value; Rasmus is a CF who hits to all fields while Stanton is a RF who strikes out too much. He’s going to be somewhere between Mark Reynolds and Adam Dunn as a hitter. Nowhere near the all-around hitter Rasmus can become. Florida would have to throw in prospects with Stanton.

16 10 2010
d-dizzle

probably wouldn’t have to throw in prospects, but its fair straight up.

-D

15 10 2010
Bernard

What the hell would the Cardinals want McLouth for? Why would they want to pay 6.5 million for a guy who went .198/.298/.322 this season? Let’s get serious with these offers…

15 10 2010
Tomcat

Fowler, Eric Young Jr and Seth Smith

15 10 2010
Scott Cohen

You make Rasmus sound awesome, but his statistics are terrible. 23 homers and just 66 RBIs. That is pitiful. 63 walks but 148 strikeouts. 12 steals but 8 caught stealing. Statistics wise he is lousy. .361 OBP is decent buy he is nothing special

15 10 2010
Bernard

23 Homers from a 24 year old center fielder in only 534 plate appearance is fantastic. He slugged .498, which is far more reflective of power production than home runs, which is behind only Hamilton, Gonzalez and Wells (and Gonzalez spent more time at the corners) among CFs in all of baseball. That “lousy” .361 OBP is the 5th best for a CF in baseball (behind Hamilton, Gardner, Gonzalez and McCutcheon).

RBIs are a function of the line-up around him, the fact that the line-up, aside from Pujols and Hollidays, is full of junk is not his fault. Molina is tolerable, the rest is barely replacement level.

16 10 2010
Tomcat

not to mention He was lights out for three months and below average for the other three, his potential looks more like his April than his Julby

16 10 2010
Tomcat

July

15 10 2010
D-Dizzle

statistics, huh? what about the centerfield leading .860+ ops and a near .500 slugging percent? those are statistics, and please don’t bother with RBI’s, you lose a lot of credible with me(and probably a lot of others) as a major way to gain success.

-D

15 10 2010
Raph

Braves would trade J.J + prospect + cash (around 3mil) for him.

16 10 2010
Matthew

To: The Dodgers, For: Matt Kemp and mid-level minor leaguers. Kemp’s power will come out more in St Louis, and Rasmus has the line-drive pop to succeed in Chavez. It is a rare win-win trade.

16 10 2010
Wilchiro

The Jays and Braves deals are somewhat reasonable, as an outfield consisting of Heyward and Rasmus would be monsterous.

16 10 2010
Tomcat

Rasmus to the Indians for Choo and Cabrera

16 10 2010
Sam

The Cardinals would have to be awe-struck to deal Rasmus, i say Bautista, Drabek, Marcum, and Aaron Hill would be something along the lines of what would get it done

16 10 2010
Dwayne

For the Jays, I think Marcum and JP Arencibia makes more sense. St. Louis could use a power bat at C, and JPA was the AAA player of the year in the PCL, with over .300/30/100. The Jays are loaded at C prospects, and can resign Buck for a couple years till they are ready.

16 10 2010
Tomas

Kimbrel no way….I’d be willing to do it with Aroldys Vizcaino, but not Kimbrel, and would try to avoid trading Infante………….

How about Mike Dunn or Stephen Marek instead of Kimbrel. Matt Young, and Todd Redmond instead of Infante.

19 10 2010
Purple_Haze

jesus christ. this one is the winner for dumbest i’ve seen so far.

17 10 2010
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17 10 2010
showme

As a Cardinal fan, I wouldn’t make any of those trades. Rasmus has just two years of major league experience with only a couple years of minor league experience. He had a good year in 2009 and had even a better year in 2010. I think Rasmus will be an all star caliber player mjuch sooner than any of the players that were named as possible trades.

19 10 2010
Bravesfan 478

I do believe a braves package of Minor, Milligan, Diaz, and maybe a Pastornicky or someone of that level, a close to ready middle infield C+ prospect, This fills St. Louis’ needs for an extra outfielder, A major league ready arm to put in and solidiy the backend of their rotation, and a decent outfield prospect.

19 10 2010
joe

okay here is the trade the cards need to go after… which i dont know if the room is there with trying to sign pujols next yr… if they dont sign westbrook which i heard was around 8 mil… trade rasmus straight up for josh johnson… next yr his a fa ad will test the fa market… i know then the cards will have pujols and josh to sign…. alot… but on the 2010 season they would save 14 million… so even if u pay johnson 4 yr 48 mil, ur only lookin for a mil a yr extra cap room… and cards have the money… owners….. carp, wainwright, johnson, garcia, lohse and drop pennys 8.75 mil contract…. who cares who plays cf…. 4 of 5 nights we have a stud on the mound mowing down batters. put john jay in center and you have jay, holliday, and an open spot for say craig or another up and coming of…. i know the cards need bats… but on something this anticing, why not? carp isnt getting younger… this would also solidify the starting rotation for the future… johnson garcia and wainwright…. free salary with carp and lohse when contracts are up… i know we need bats… and we need to sign pujols… but… i think pujols will sign a decent contract to stay in st louis…. especially now that larussa signed…. cards were killing first half of the season … who did we lose in our lineup… ludwick and freese… we get freese back at third…. and jon jay came up… so is the bats really a problem… depth might be…. but…. we saw how the young guys did at the end of the yr…. COME ON!

20 10 2010
jeff

Reading the braves fans comments in this has hurt my head.

a classic case of overly evaluating your prospects.

From the Braves, we would need Teheran to get started, a middle infield prospect, and an outfield prospect/replacement that isn’t McClouth.

Four years of team cheap team control raw talent, and he has proven himself? and is very likely to continue to improve, and you think we want your 3rd best prospect and a back up middle infielder, and you are complaining about the closer?

haha….no.

And personally, I would have zero interest in Ellsbury.

There was a poster that is a Yankees fan that made a post that I liked, if I were to trade Rasmus, I would need a top end pitching prospect with a ton of talent, and someone that can potentially replace Rasmus, and another prospect, otherwise, I am keeping him. I have no need to trade him, I am very very happy to keep him.

21 10 2010
Brett

As a Braves fan I would prefer the following deal. It would be giving up quite a bit but Rasmus is definitely worth every penny

Braves get:
Colby Rasmus

Cardinals get:
Jair Jurrjens
Nate Mclouth
Steven Marek
Tyler Pastornicky
money (for mclouth’s contract)

21 10 2010
Carl

Rasmus isn’t just an average center fielder who can hit: he’s a gold-glove caliber defender in center field, whose natural growth progression should put him in the conversation with the 10-20 most valuable players in baseball in the next 3-4 years. He’s the best all-around center fielder since the heydays of Grady Sizemore and Carlos Beltran.

No way I trade him for any of the packages tossed around here, and if TLR forces the Cards’ hand that way, then Rasmus is worth more than TLR. Kimbrel? Give me a break. Closer = 9th-inning reliever, and relievers are fungible. The Cards have plenty of bullpen depth already, and Dave Duncan can work just fine with Franklin, McClellan, et al. The best prospect in baseball (and his name is not ‘Teheran’) wouldn’t be worth the best center fielder in baseball RIGHT NOW, and a minor league bullpen arm or four wouldn’t change that.

22 10 2010
Sk1310

Carl,
Kimbrels numbers at age 22:
ERA:0.44, 20.2 innings, 40 k’s, 1.21 whip and k/9 of 17.4….. Throws 97mph with a nasty slider, hence why everyone calls him the right handed Billy Wagner. Those type of young closers don’t grow on trees.

25 10 2010
Carl

But he also walked 16 in 20 innings. It’s hard to be a closer if you put someone on base for free almost once an appearance. Carlos Marmol somehow does it, but it’s almost not worth the ride. I’m not down on Kimbrel – maybe he figures it out, and maybe he doesn’t, but even without that kind of question mark, 60 innings of a reliever will never be worth as much as the best center fielder in baseball, which is what Rasmus is already at age 23.

You just don’t trade the best young center fielder in baseball with a 400K salary for a question-mark closer, or for any package of similar question marks. And the Cardinals have already shown themselves wise enough to realize that you don’t have to pay extra dollars for a ‘closer’ when you have half a dozen guys in your bullpen with low-3.00 ERA’s, any of whom would be happy to have the ninth-inning job. When you have Dave Duncan, Ryan Franklins do grow on trees.

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