Thursday, December 22, 2011

The Trade That Didn't Happen

We've all heard the rumors at this point, the Braves and Orioles discussed a trade that would send Jair Jurrjens and Martin Prado (along with prospects) to Baltimore for O's CF Adam Jones.  An earlier post here on Warehouse Worthy discussed Jones' contract situation, and as it stands, the O's are not going to lose Adam just yet.  So let's break down this trade, and why the O's might want to trade Adam.

The Trade

Jones is one of the most talented and valuable players on the Orioles' roster, which is why teams without a long-term answer in CF (or even LF) would be interested in Jones.  The Braves reportedly offered Jair Jurrjens, Martin Prado and a prospect (likely a lower level prospect) for Jones, an offer that many Braves fans (and baseball fans in general) thought the O's should have taken.  Reportedly, the Orioles countered by asking for 2 of the Braves top 5 pitching prospects along with the pair of major leaguers.  The Braves, understandable, balked at this proposal, and talks have cooled for now.

What We'd Get

Jurrjens posted a solid, though injury marred season last year with a 2.96 ERA (despite a 3.99 FIP).  There are 2 issues for Jurrjens, and that is 1. that he only strikes out 5.33 batters per 9 innings, and 2. he struggles with injuries, throwing over 200 IP just once in his career.

Prado had a solid season hitting .260/.302/.385 and can competently play several IF and OF positions.  Prado was hurt last season, and is expected to bounce back somewhat in 2012 if he doesn't get injured again.  It is obvious that these 2 players would provide value to the Orioles, but would not likely be a part of the O's next winning team.

Getting them would likely require more trades in the future to find players that will be on the O's next playoff team.  This obviously hurts their value to the Orioles, as these players don't math up with Baltimore's needs.  Not to mention that some question how effective Jurrjens would be in the AL East, given his propensity for pitching to contact.

Duquette's Rebuttal

Dan Duquette supposedly countered asking for 2 of the Braves top 5 pitching prospects, including Julio Teheran, Arodys Vizcaino and Randall Delgado.  I really like this counter offer, as the O's are not currently facing the potential loss of Jones to free agency.  It's fine to listen to offers, but at this point, the team would have to be blown away to trade one of their stars.  Jones holds immense value for both his potential and his production, and the O's either need to lock him up or get a massive haul back for him.  There's no other option at this point for the team.

In case you're feeling nostalgic, here's a look at what you'd be missing if Jones was traded:

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