Friday, November 22, 2013

Hot Stove Update: Cardinals Trade David Freese to Angels for Peter Bourjos

The Hot Stove kept on crackling today as the Cardinals and Angels swapped a total of 4 players.  The Cardinals sent 3B David Freese and RHP Fernando Salas packing and took back OF's Peter Bourjos and Randall Grichuk.  Although this trade is a surprise, it makes sense for both sides after you break it down.

Freese is coming off a tough season which saw his numbers slip significantly on both sides of the ball.  He is heading into his age 31 season.  The Cardinals need to find another place for Matt Carpenter to play to make room for Kolton Wong at 2B.  Carpenter can play 3B.  The Cardinals are thin in the OF with Carlos Beltran in free agency.  They have a premium prospect talent in Oscar Tavares, but he is coming off an injury plagued season in AAA.  Jon Jay is doesn't hit much and has had negative UZR numbers 3 of the last 4 seasons.  Bourjos is a premium defensive CF who hits at least as well as Jay.  He is also going into his age 27 season so should be entering his prime years.  He is also coming off an injury plagued season.

The Angels are a train wreck no matter how you look at it, but they were looking for an upgrade at 3B.  Freese is a decent bet to have a positive regression in 2014.  There was no room for Bourjos to start in their OF with Trout, Hamilton and Kole Calhoun.

As for the throw-ins, Fernando Salas has had his ups and downs in the Cardinals' bullpen, but is likely an upgrade on all but 1 or 2 pitchers in the Angels' pen.  Randall Grichuk is an interesting OF prospect with a bit of power.

I am not in love with Bourjos bat, but when you factor in defense, it is looking like a narrow win for the Cardinals.  Freese may help the Angels but all it would take is one injury and they may regret not having Bourjos as a backup.

Around the League:

The Mets signed OF Chris B Young to a 1 year $7.5 M contract.  Young was a guy who I thought might be a fit for the Giants.  Young's stock has fallen dramatically in the last few years.  He's a nice complimentary piece on a contending team.  I'm not sure he does much, if anything for the Mets, although if you are a WAR freak, he only has to make a 1.2 or so to earn his keep and any one year contract is team friendly these days.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the breakdown. Although its a bit of a downer for me, as the Cards are a strong obstacle (along with da Bums) to 3 rings in 6 six years (3-in-6!!!).
    This is like the Iran-Iraq War - trying to decide whom I want to lose more. Hopefully the GMen can make some similar moves with their lads on the outside looking into the 40 man roster.