Mychael Urban updated his story and it includes the following quotes from Billy Beane:
"In our marketplace, in our position, we're always going to listen [to trade offers from other teams]," he said. "We're always going to do that."
Asked point-blank if he planned on trading a starter, he replied, "We don't have to. That's the good thing."
"People are going to look at the Hudson and Mulder situations here and say, 'Oh, they have to do something [with Zito] now,'" he said. "But you can go back to the years when we had [Jason] Giambi and Miggy [Tejada] in the final year of their contracts, too. If we feel like we're in a position to win the division, we're not afraid to keep a guy we think will help us do that."
"With Barry, Esteban, Rich, Danny and Joe, we have one of the best, if not the best, starting rotations in the American League."
Asked if he thought the A's would have the money to re-sign Zito, Beane was again evasive, saying, "I couldn't say, because I don't know how much it's gonna take to re-sign Barry Zito."
So to me this simply says exactly how I initially reacted to the deal. The plan is to have immense depth in the pitching staff. Beane read the market and did the wise thing, and that was to corner it. So now, he can just sit back and wait to measure the market for Barry Zito. If he gets blown away with an offer, then he can move him.
And that is exactly why he hasn't explored an extension yet. So be prepared to hear a lot of Zito rumors over the next week and a half. Beane will move Zito if and only if, he gets the deal he wants. Dealing from a position of strength...it's the ideal way to run a team. Zito could also fetch quite a ransom come trade deadline time if he isn't moved in the next little while.
Once again, Billy Beane should be the belle of the ball next week. He wouldn't have it any other way.