As many of you will soon get to know i am a baseball guy, i eat, drink, and breath baseball. This provides a nice balance between me and Kevin as he is more of a football guy. Now that's not to say that i don't know anything about football, i just like baseball more. Now to circle back to the point of my article, as you know it is the MLB Off season. Which for many casual fans means the end of baseball, when in fact some of the most interesting things about baseball are taking place. The Arizona Fall League just concluded but it is any excellent place to view some of baseballs best young talent as the future stars of MLB face off in a short season. Then we have the Winter Meetings where a lot of significant trades and free agent signings are orchestrated. You can also watch many other winter ball leagues in the Dominican and many other Caribbean and South American Leagues. But my main reason for loving the offseason is that it is a time to watch championship teams be constructed, bad franchises turn it around or good franchises fall apart. What happens during the season is in a large part due to what is achieved in the offseason. Now there has already been some major activity this offseason and will only get busier as the winter drags on, so i thought we should take a look at some of the major moves that have been made before it gets to hectic.
Cameron Maybin Traded to San Diego for Ryan Webb and Edward Mujica
Hiroki Kuroda re-signed with the Los Angeles Dodgers
Dan Uggla Traded to Atlanta for Omar Infante and Michael Dunn
Rajai Davis Traded to Toronto for Trystan Magnuson & Dan Farquhar
Clint Barmes Traded to Houston for Felipe Paulino
John Buck signed with Florida
Joaquin Benoit signed with Detroit
Geoff Blum signed with Arizona
Jake Westbrook re-signed with St. Louis
Not really a ton of big moves have happened but still some interesting moves. I'm not sure Cameron Maybin moving to the biggest pitchers park is great for him but still maybe a change of scenery will be good and the Padres gave up replaceable relievers for him so i think they win that trade. The Braves got a huge win in the Uggla trade, Omar Infante overproduced last year, he is a glorified utility player and Michael Dunn is a decent reliever but neither equals Uggla's value. I know the Marlins initially asked for Martin Prado but the Braves balked at that. I guess the Marlins just wanted to trade him at all costs but i still feel they could have gotten a better package than Infante and Dunn. Rajai Davis is intriguing and could prove to be a useful lead off hitter for Toronto but its a very minor trade that has little impact on either team. The same goes for the Barmes, Paulino trade as neither should have a significant impact for their teams although i do like Clint Barmes. Looking at the free agent signings Detroit over payed for Benoit, Florida over payed for John Buck, the rest of the contracts were decent. But outside of the Dan Uggla trade none of these moves were "Impact" moves. I cant wait to see what else happens and to keep updated you should check out mlbtraderumors.com as they are an excellent source for baseball trade and free agent updates.
Chris "da Franchize" Hart