If only the A's could upgrade SS from Pennington to a good defensive SS with some pop in his bat. Someone like JJ Hardy.
The A's young rotation could really use a solid veteran in the middle of the rotation, someone good enough that combined with Braden and Anderson, suddenly competing in 2010 would even start to look less impossible. Someone like Javier Vasquez.
Not only have recent -- if not current -- ideal targets been traded this off-season, what stands out is for how little they have been traded.
Not that Jamey Carroll and Coco Crisp wouldn't make a killer 3-4 in the middle of any batting order, but start talking about Hardy and Vasquez and my interest piques just a smidge more. The asking price for Hardy was Carlos Gomez, while Melky Fricking Cabrera was the headliner for the deal bringing Vasquez back to the Bronx.
So let me understand: The A's are stockpiling CFers about as good as Gomez and Cabrera, instead of acquiring shortstops who can field while hitting 20+ HRs and starters FIP rates as 3rd best in the entire National League in 2009?
I honestly would have thought that due to his defense Hardy, despite his recent batting woes, would require more in trade than he did. And I guess the Vasquez trade must come down to a salary dump, because that is one heckuva starting pitcher to pick up without going "ouch" over the players you gave up. Even Curtis Granderson, a CFer who plays very good defense and slugs almost .500, went for less than I would have guessed he would.
How are these guys going for so little? And why aren't the A's in on it?
EDIT -- 2:07pm PDT. OK, I wrote this kinda fast when I saw there was nothing new up today, and hadn't fact-checked enough to realize that Vazquez has only one year left on his contract, and that Vizcaino's pedigree is more significant than I recalled. So forget the Vazquez part of this post, and focus on Hardy and Granderson. And, of course...Brandon Inge!!!!!