|Warning: Eutaw Street-goers beware.|
The O's have sent two minor leaguers to the Phillies for Jim Thome, who will likely DH for the club going forward. The minor leaguers in question are RHP Kyle Simon and C Gabriel Lino. Simon was a 4th round pick who has been putting up decent numbers at Frederick: 3.96 ERA, 1.48 WHIP in 14 starts. Lino is a 19 year old prospect who has the potential to be plus defensively behind the plate and could hit for big power. Question mark on Lino is his ability to hit enough to get to that power according to Kevin Goldstein.
Lino isn't lighting the world on fire, but has shown flashes of the potential he has at Delmarva this season. The real question for me is one of value. What does Thome give you that Betemit, Reynolds and Johnson don't? Thome just isn't a huge upgrade for the O's because he represents a slightly better version of a guy we already have 3 of.
So the value for us is marginal, and the value for the Phils is pretty solid. Thome likely wouldn't start at 1B so they're selling high on a guy who is raking as a DH in interleague play. The O's give up Simon, a decent relief prospect and Lino. My big issue here is Lino, as he's a high upside guy. Granted, he isn't likely to reach that upside, but he's an interesting prospect nonetheless.
In the moment this seems like an overpay for a guy that likely won't help the O's win all that many more games this season. That said, this is hardly the end of the world, and we could certainly use some more pop in the middle of our lineup. At the end of the day, it's really not a big deal either way. I just think that if the O's are going to be sending prospects elsewhere they should be focusing on guys who could be bigger upgrades to the roster.
As with any trade, time will tell. Would love to hear your thoughts on the move in the comments.