The Cubs sent Campana to the Arizona Diamondbacks for a pair of low-level, 17-year-old, minor-league pitchers — Erick Leal and Jesus Castillo. That’s right, SEVENTEEN years old, and both already have a professional season under their belts (well, half-season, but who’s counting?). I know nothing about Leal nor Castillo, but at that age, does it matter? There so much projection, it’s hard to guess what these arms may turn out to be. The last 17-year-old professional pitcher I remember was Deolis Guerra, who is now 23.
Do the Mets have comparably young arms that they could spare? Not sure, and not sure it would be a price I’d be willing to pay for Campana. Not because I don’t like Campana — I do — but when kids are so young and projectable it can be dangerous to trade them away. Chances are, a 17-year-old will be out of pro ball before he’s old enough to drink. But then every once in a while, a team like the Mets trades a 20-year-old like Nelson Cruz for a utility player like Jorge Velandia. Bottom line is I’d be more comfortable trading a less-projectable, better-known entity — like a 23-year-old having a hard time jumping from A to AA. But, then, the Cubs may not have been interested in such a deal.
What would you have done? Would you have traded a pair of 17-year-old hurlers for Tony Campana? Why or why not?
About the Author
Joe Janish began MetsToday in 2005 to provide the unique perspective of a high-level player and coach -- he earned NCAA D-1 All-American honors as a catcher and coached several players who went on to play pro ball. As a result his posts often include mechanical evaluations, scout-like analysis, and opinions that go beyond the numbers.