Ichiro dealt, Cole Hamels comes off the market, a former batting champ gets dealt, a former World Series MVP is designated for assignment and some Cardinals thoughts.
Cole Hamels, a free agent at the end of the year, has signed a 6 year $144 million deal to stay with the Phillies. Hamels is the most notable coveted starter to come off of the trade market in recent days follwing fellow lefty Wandy Rodriguez who was shipped off to the Pittsburgh Pirates from the Astros.
Whose left? Matt Garza, James Shields, Josh Johnson, Zach Greinke and Ryan Dempster all saw their stocks rise this week.
What does this mean for the Cardinals? Theo Epstein and the Cubs are likely not too interested in sending Garza and Dempster down highway 55 to the Cards. Same with Greinke and the Brewers; Although, as a Cardinals fan I’m not sure Geinke is realistic or ideal. The Birds already have one head case on their hands with Jamie Garcia. After what the Marlins did this week moving Anibal Sanchez to the Tigers and Hanley Ramirez to the Dodgers, one has to think Josh Johnson is next. I am not a huge fan of fake trade talk but…if the Marlins are interested in the Cards highly touted prospect Shelby Miller I would hope Cards GM John Mozeliak could work a package around Miller in exchange for Josh Johnson. Miller is struggling this year in AAA, posting a 5-8 record and 5.40 ERA with a .275 batting average against. Johnson is 6-7 with a 4.14 ERA and a 1.34 WHIP. A change of scenery could help both.
World Series MVP is designated for assignment
Hedeki Matsui won the 2009 World Series MVP with the New York Yankees. Today he was cut by the Tampa Bay Rays. After leaving New York in 2009 he has spent time with the Angels, Athletics and the Rays. Matsui has not been able to stay healthy and was batting .147 with 7 RBI in 34 games. It is painful/obnoxious to watch a guy at the end of his career struggle and get dumped by teams, but who are we (the fans) to say when a player should retire. If someone is going to give him a contract to play he would have to be crazy not to take it. Play as much as you can while you can.
Hanley dealt to the Dodgers
Hanley Ramirez won a batting title in 2009 while hitting .342. In 2011 he hit .243 and so far in 2012 he is hitting .246. His career hitting splits are .300/.374/.499. This guy can hit, but with him it’s all between the ears. If Hanley was smart he would be bothering the hell out of Matt Kemp. Ramirez makes his Dodgers debut against the Cards tonight.
Ichiro was dealt from the Mariners to the Yankees early this week. The Mariners had only made the playoffs once in Ichiro’s tenure, which was his rookie season in 2001. As a fan, I can’t wait to see Ichiro in the playoffs, (barring a huge collapse by the Yankees) even if it is at the end of his career. He is a Hall of Famer and deserves it.
Enjoy this tune.