This week I will analyze the Mark Teixeira and Eric Gagne trades.
Also, last week my blog was mentioned on www.bleacherbloggers.com, which is a new website that has an online talk show discussing current sports topics and referencing sports blogs. You can see the video that mentions my blog at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g99UK9CCtnc.
On 7/30/07 the Rangers acquired C/1B Jarrod Saltalamacchia, SS Elvis Andrus, LHP Matt Harrison, LHP Beau Jones and RHP Neftali Feliz from the Braves in exchange for 1B Mark Teixeira and LHP Ron Mahay
Even though Mark is a great player and has done great for the Rangers, he was going to be gone after next year and so they had to trade him. With Atlanta he has been moved to the cleanup spot following Franco Harris, Kelly Johnson, and Chipper Jones. I’m sure he’ll continue to be a great player but the Rangers weren’t going to be able to keep him.
Ron had pitched 4 really good years for us in the AL and should do even better in the NL since there is no DH. Ron had been with the Rangers since 2003, with ERA’s of 3.18, 2.55, 6.81, 3.95, and 2.77.
Jarrod can be the back-up catcher while being the starting 1st baseman at the same time. He can hit for power, but is better when nobody is on base. Jarrod has tended to hit better in day games this year, hitting .300 in 20 day games with 2 of his 4 home runs, while in night games he is batting just .245 in 32 night games with the other two of his home runs. Jarrod was doing great in May and June, hitting .313 in May and .327 in June, but hit .228 in July and is hitting .143 in the 5 August games. Jarrod was ranked the 36th best prospect in all of baseball by Baseball America at the beginning of the year and was also ranked the best prospect in the NL East.
I saw Elvis Andrus play in Myrtle Beach in May and he made one great play after another. He made a couple of diving plays, a couple of tough plays, and one sliding play. He’s only hitting .241 this year but he probably is the best fielder in all of the Rangers minor league system, possibly including the majors. Elvis was also ranked the 65th best prospect in all of baseball by Baseball America at the beginning of the year
Some people have compared Matt to Tom Glavine as he has an 89-92 MPH fastball and an above-average change-up. He also likes to keep the ball low in the zone. This year Harrison is 5-7 with a 3.39 ERA in 116.2 IP and last year he was 11-8 with a 3.35 ERA in 158.2 IP. Matt was ranked the 90th best prospect in all of baseball by Baseball America at the beginning of the year.
Beau has a good fastball and a very good curveball but awful control as he has walked 125 in just over 200 innings. In 2005 Beau was taken in the first supplemental round.
Neftali was 2-0 with a 2.05 ERA in 26.1 innings this year with the Danville Braves. Neftali was ranked the 14th best prospect in all of the Rangers minor league system by Baseball America.
This trade was very good since we had to trade Teixeira and we got the three best prospects in the Braves minor league system (all three in Baseball America’s top 100) plus two other good prospects.
On 7/31/07 the Rangers acquired LHP Kason Gabbard, OF David Murphy and OF Engel Beltre from the Red Sox for RHP Eric Gagne and cash.
Eric was doing really well this year with 16 saves and a 2.16 ERA, but he was going to be a free agent at the end of the year so there was no point in keeping him.
Kason has done really well this year going 7-2 with a 3.24 ERA for the Pawtucket Red Sox (AAA) this year, and then going 4-1 with a 3.86 ERA between the Boston Red Sox and the Rangers this year (after his first Rangers start). He was 4-0 with a 3.73 ERA with Boston before the trade. In 2006 he went 1-3 with a 3.51 ERA for Boston.
David is at most a 4th outfielder and in 24 career major league at-bats only has 6 hits. David is batting .280 with 9 HR and 47 RBI this year in 400 at-bats in Pawtucket. David is a lefty originally from Texas.
Engel was ranked the 20th best Rangers prospect but is only in the Rookie League and is only batting .203 on the season with 5 HR and 14 RBI. Engel is very raw but has great potential. Engel is also a lefty. He has struck out 48 times in 148 at-bats this year.
We didn’t need Gagne for the rest of this year and we still got a very good major league ready pitcher, a back-up outfielder, and a great prospect for him.
Results of last week’s poll:
Question: What position do you think the Rangers need to trade for the most?
Starting pitcher: 88%
First baseman: 2%
All other positions: 0%
Come back next week for a description of the road trip I just took to see the Rangers in Cleveland and to see the Reds in Pittsburgh.