Trading Post - Dunn to the Future of the A's?

As the last few dairys have told us, Peter Gammons came up with yet another trade idea (likely wont come to pass, but I for one hope it does), that the A's would get Adam Dunn.

The trade is as follows:

To Cincinatti:
LHP Dallas Braden (AA Midland)
C   Kurt Suzuki (A+ Stockton)
RHP Juan Cruz (AAA Sacramento)
RHP Jairo Garica (AAA Sacramento)

To Oakland:
LF/1B Adam Dunn (Cincinatti)

Effect on A's:
First, lets ask the question: What happens to the A's lineup and MLB team if the A's make this trade?

First, Kieth Ginter would be sent down to AAA Sacramento. That is a given. If Chavez's arm acts up, Marco Scutaro will fill in nicely.

The next is where would Dunn play? Adam Dunn could effectivly play three positions for the A's: LF, 1B and DH. Dunn is VERY good vs Right Handed Pitching, but struggles a lot vs LHP. Luckily, the A's are very good vs LHP, but not as much vs RHP. That is the A's hole.

Mock Lineups vs LHP/RHP:

vs LHP:

  1. Jason Kendall (C)
  2. Mark Kotsay (CF)
  3. Bobby Crosby (SS)
  4. Eric Chavez (3B)
  5. Bobby Kielty (LF)
  6. Adam Dunn (1B)
  7. Dan Johnson (DH)
  8. Nick Swisher (RF)
  9. Mark Ellis (2B)
vs RHP
  1. Jason Kendall (C)
  2. Mark Kotsay (CF)
  3. Bobby Crosby (SS)
  4. Eric Chavez (3B)
  5. Adam Dunn (LF)
  6. Nick Swisher (RF)
  7. Dan Johnson (1B)
  8. Scott Hatteberg (DH)
  9. Mark Ellis (2B)
Obviously, that RHP lineup now looks very impressive. The guy who hurts the most in the lineup, obviously, is Jay Payton, who has to find playing time with Kielty in the mix.

Dunn would instantly boost what is deemed a weak powered A's team, and get them one of the best offences in the AL. No pitcher, RH or LH would want to face that lineup. The A's might take a bit of a hit on defence, but gain it ten fold in offence.

Dunn is famous for a few things. The first being his 50 Home Run potential. The second being his .400 OBP and huge SLG/OPS. The final being that he strikes out a LOT. That will be the key. Dunn suffers from a low batting average and high K rates, which could very well hurt him and the A's potentialy. That is the downside, but impressivly he still manages to put up the huge On Base Percentage and Slugging Percentage that the A's (or any team) craves.

Dunn could cost a pretty penny, but if his Arbitration follows the Vlad, etc paycheck line, he should get somewhere around 7 Million next year, and 10 million the final. That may seem like a lot, but the A's have $20-25 million in payroll comming off the books after the 2005 campaign. Hell, Dotel and Durazo alone make up the salary difference. To top it, Wolfe has said that if Billy thinks a trade will help the team, the purse will open a bit.

The A's as a team are very cheap and locked in with good young cheap guys at many positions. That is why we can afford to pay for Dunn, Kendall and Chavez. But the big thing people wonder- if we get Dunn, can we keep Zito? I honestly belive that if we can get him at a reasonable price, we can keep Zito, but regardless the price of pitching is too high anyways. Dunn might not have an effect on that as much as we think.

The Prospects"
The big thing about this trade is that we are sending FOUR prospects for a guy who will be here for 2 and 1/3 years. But remember, he will be here for 2 more years.

Lets look at this player by player.

Dallas Braden: Our famed late late late round pick that turned gold for us. Braden's K rate has dropped signifigantly since moving to AA Midland, and I honestly belive that Windsor is a much better prospect. We should definantly keep Windsor. Braden may even project to be a reliever, but only time will tell. With the A's Starting Pitching depth, especialy if we keep Zito, Braden becomes somewhat expendable. The A's will have a #1 (Harden), #2 (Zito), #3 (Haren), #4 (Blanton) and a slew of guys to take over the #5 (Saarloos, Rhienecker, Meyer), and quite a few good pitching prospects down the line (Windsor, Italiano, Mazzaro, Lansford, etc). Braden, thus, becomes expendable. He will likely be required in any deal, unless we can slip the Reds a mickey and send them Knox and Obechain instead.

Kurt Suzuki:
This is where it hurts to most AN'ers. We've grown to love Suzuki, all from Spring Training. The rumor has it that Suzuki's defence is rather unimpressive, dispite the Spring Training preformance. Someone at (of the SportsBlog family) said that he ranks 2nd to last for all California League Catchers.

To top it, Jason Kendall is signed till 2008, meaning that there will be little need for Suzuki till then. The A's also have stopgags in place in the minors- Brown, Baker, and also have Powell comming back next year to take over catching dutys. If the A's belive that Powell is comming back 100%, that makes Suzuki a bit expendable. Powell was rated higher in Offence and Defence before the knee injury. That is the key though.

Juan Cruz:
Juan Cruz... an enigma. Bluntly, I think he is an NL pitcher. A guy who excells in the NL, and cant do it in the AL. See: Mark Redman. Cruz has not been the same since being traded, and the Arby case where the A's had to diss him. His AAA numbers as a starter are great, but the A's have several fill ins for starts in the Majors, and Cruz's MLB numbers are not impressive in the least.

Jairo Garica:
Garica is a Dotel Clone, we all know. He is young, talented, but cant seem to pitch well above AA. He goes to AAA, and gets shelled. Dispite this though, his K numbers and baa are awesome. But, there might not be any room on the A's for him, and frankly, we should deal him while he has value. I dont trust him anymore, and we have Street as our closer.

The Future of the A's:
Dispite trading these 4, the A's are STILL set for the future. We still have Andre Ethier knocking on the door, Daric Barton, and Shawn Kohn can pull a Bradford and help the pen next year. Even with out Braden, the A's are set at pitching. Even with out Suzuki, the A's are set at catcher for quite some time, and we can always draft a top catcher next draft, who will be ready in time for 2009. Cruz and Garcia are already expendable. The Bullpen is set.

I would gladly sacrafice some future guys who might or might not make the team a couple years from now, for a World Series Ring the next couple years. Remember that Dunn will be here for a couple years to come if he is brought here.

The final part of this is what to do with Barton and Ethier.

Well, lets look at the Mid-2006 Lineup...

C1: Kendall
1B: Johnson
2B: Ellis
3B: Chavez
SS: Crosby
LF: Dunn
RF: Swisher
CF: Kotsay
DH: Barton

BN: Ethier
BN: Kielty
BN: Scutaro
BN: Baker
BN: Ginter

SP: Zito
SP: Harden
SP: Haren
SP: Blanton
SP: Meyer/Saarloos/Rhienecker/Kennedy

RP: Street
RP: Duchscherer
RP: Calero
RP: Kennedy
RP: Saarloos
RP: Kohn