Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Trading Mark Teixeira

This website: does an outstanding job of linking to and discussing Teixeira trade rumors.

Reading the chatter, you get the idea various teams (Angels, Dodgers, Braves, Tigers) will trade the Rangers a major league ready first basemen (Casey Kotchman or James Loney or Jarrold Saltalamacchia), plus a near major league ready center field prospect, plus a decent low level pitching prospect.

Well, horsefeathers.

The Rangers must demand a top flight pitching prospect - someone with solid potential to be a number one or a number two pitcher on a World Series team. If the Rangers can extract a CF prospect also, that would be good.

As for a first baseman: why? This is an easy position to play. Frank Catalanotto came up as a second baseman, and he can man first base for the Rangers for the remainder of his three year contract. Travis Metcalf could play first base. Jason Botts could play first base in a pinch. Gerald Laird could play first base. Who needs a first baseman?

Get a top pitching prospect. If the kid is still at Class A, that's a risk we must take. Stock the minors with top pitching prospects. We don't want "good" prospects. We want top flight prospects - the kind that make veteran baseball people whistle and say: "Wh-shew. That kid can throw." We want to stuff our minor leagues with pitching - stuff them to the gills. Pitching is a numbers game.

All that said: I like Saltalamacchia as a player. And I've nothing against Kotchman or Loney. I just don't see the need to actively seek out a first baseman. Put Catalanotto at 1B, and turn the OKC outfielders loose against major league pitching.

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