Browsing Archive July, 2011

Zach Attack: The Wheeler Era Begins

So, who is this Zach Wheeler and why should we be happy he is a New York Met? Well, for openers, Wheeler is the textbook example of “live arm,” having a 10.7 K/9 ratio in low-A in 2010. Zach is a groundball machine and has the stuff to become the front end starter the Mets need if they are ever to return to contention. This year, pitching for San Jose in the California (high-A) league, he has gone 7-5 with 98 Ks in 88 IPs. Walks continue to be an issue, as he has also issued 47 of them this year, a slight improvement to his 5.89 BB/9 ratio last year. So he’s got some work to do, but at 21 and in his second pro season, he certainly has the time he needs to work things out.

Kudos to Sandy Alderson on a getting a player with the potential to become the Mets next great ace. For what it’s worth, he immediately becomes the Mets best prospect. Not a bad haul for an aging outfielder with a stupid clause in his contract. My guess is that Wheeler will finish the year in the Florida State League and maybe get an invite to Spring Training next year. One thing for sure, with Wheeler, Harvey, Familia and Mejia, plenty of trips to Eastern League Reading and International League Lehigh Valley will be in my travel itinerary next summer when the Mets farm teams come to town.


Blog Roundup: Steve Zabriskie Edition

“The inevitable has finally become a reality.”

Pending player and league approval, Carlos Beltran has been traded to the San Francisco Giants for top pitching prospect Zack Wheeler.  In the deal, the Mets will reportedly pay $4MM of Beltran’s remaining $6MM salary.

As you would imagine, the blogosphere has exploded with reaction:

  • Ted Berg pays tribute to Beltran like only Ted Berg can.
  • Amazin’ Avenue examines the newest member of the Mets’ organization, Zack Wheeler.
  • Hitting Things with Sticks thinks Sandy Alderson is 2 for 2 in the trade department. 
  • Daily Stache says goodbye to Beltran with the help of Sarah Brightman and Andrea Bocelli.
  • Joe Petruccio uses watercolors to explain the trade.
  • Mets Fever has video of Wheeler.
  • MetsMerized has Beltran’s final statistical rankings as a Met.
  • In other trade deadline news, MetsBlog reports that the Mets turned down a trade offer from the Angels: SS Erick Aybar for Jose Reyes.  Some guy named “One NL Executive” thought it would have been a good deal for the Mets.

And keep checking Mets Today for the latest news on the Beltran trade and much more.


Cardinals Trade Colby Rasmus to Blue Jays

While we’re waiting to get the official word on the Carlos Beltran deal, you may be interested to know that the Cardinals have traded young centerfielder Colby Rasmus to the Blue Jays in return for Edwin Jackson, Octavio Dotel, Marc Rzepczynski, Corey Patterson, and either players to be named later or cash considerations. In addition to Rasmus, the Cardinals also dealt Trever Miller, P.J. Walters, and Brian Tallet.

Jackson had been acquired by the Blue Jays only hours before the Rasmus deal, in a trade with the White Sox that also netted Mark Teahen and sent back Jason Frasor and Zach Stewart to Chicago.

Got all that?

I have to say I’m stunned that the Cardinals received as little as they did for Rasmus. Though they acquired several players, none of them will have an impact in St. Louis beyond this year. I realize that Rasmus had a major personality conflict with Tony LaRussa and his teammates, so I understand why he was traded. But what I don’t get is why the Cardinals didn’t insist on getting at least one youngster who is a potential stud. It reminds me a little of when the Mets traded Scott Kazmir, in that we understood that they wanted to ship off the young lefthander, but why not get something better than Victor Zambrano in return?

Looking at this trade from the perspective of a Mets fan, I wonder if Sandy Alderson would have been able to obtain Rasmus from St. Louis in return for, say, Mike Pelfrey and Jason Isringhausen? Or maybe Chris Capuano, Angel Pagan, and Tim Byrdak (or Isringhausen)? I personally am hesitant to believe that Rasmus would have been a good fit in New York, but his raw talent is such that I’d do either of those deals in a second.

Baffling to me that the Cards did this deal and didn’t get back a package that would provide more long-term impact. Also, the timing was awful. If they waited until after Beltran was traded, they likely could have elicited competition from more teams bidding for Rasmus’ services — because with Beltran off the market, there are less big outfield bats available and many teams looking to add one.

What are your thoughts? Did the Cardinals make a bad deal? Would you have made a play for Rasmus?