I saw a note today on MLBTR that mentioned Arizona D-Backs talking with the A's about a possible Cespedes trade. They are in need of a power bat, and Cespedes fits the bill for them:
That got me thinking. What would you want for him? Pretend every team is interested in him and you are the A's GM. He is one of our most prized possessions, but is pricey at 10.5mm over the next 2 years. What return do you want and with what team?
I'll do Arizona, since they inquired.
After looking at all of their players, I think the best fits would be these players:
I analyzed each player (realistically, no we can't get Goldschmidt), and picked these players for a Cespedes return:
Chris Owings is a must have. He can fill in at 2B for us, and play some SS as well if needed. He is only 22 years old and not Arb Eligible until 2017, and under Team Control until 2020. In 55 MLB AB last season he had a .291 BA with an OPS of .742, and added 2 SB. Looking at his minor league numbers last season in AAA, he had a .330 BA with and OPS of .841, 12 HR and 20 SB in 546 AB. He is major league ready, and even if he isn't a starter yet in 2014, he will be very very soon. The 2B of the future for us.
A.J. Pollock I believe is going to be an excellent OF for many years to come. I would ask for him in this package over Cody Ross. Although Ross is more proven, he costs 9.5mm for the next 3 seasons, and is coming off of a harsh injury in 2014. I would rather not risk him in a trade for Cespedes and not get a full season out of him.
Pollock on the other hand is 26 years old, Arb Eligible in 2016, and under Team Control until 2019. In his first full season at the MLB level last year, he had a .269 BA, a .730 OPS, with 8 HR and 12 SB. He isn't ever going to have Cespedes' power, but he can steal just as many bases if given a full season, and it looks like he can maintain a BA over .250, which is not something we can guarantee for Cespedes. Plus, getting paid league minimum.
Even after those 2 guys I still felt something was missing. I would love to add another young dominant SP to our rotation, that can fit right in, and be insurance to us. The only way it seems ARI would go for this is if we threw in Anderson.
Anderson could still be a great SP (when healthy), and isn't ridiculously expensive. ARI also has a habit of collecting A's SP (Cahill, McCarthy).
I love both Corbin and Miley, and would take either of them. I feel like ARI wouldn't part with Corbin as he was their best pitcher last year, only 24 years old and under Team Control until 2019.
Wade Miley is 27, and under team control until 2018. I think he is a better fit for the A's as he is more proven with a sub 3.60 ERA in the past 2 seasons, at least 194 IP in the past 2 seasons, and at least 140 K in the past 2 seasons.
So ultimately my trade to ARI would look like this: Cespedes and Anderson FOR Owings, Pollock, and Miley
That is the type of trade I would require to deal Cespedes. Would ARI go for that, who knows?
What type of trade would you require?