MLB: News and Notes
The MLB transaction wire has remained busy the past week or so. After the Los Angeles Dodgers agreed to a deal with pitcher Zack Greinke on Saturday, the flood gates began to open.
The latest waive of moves involves the three-team deal between the Cincinnati Reds, Cleveland Indians and Arizona Diamondbacks. The deal of course featured outfielder Shin-Soo Choo heading to the Reds from the Indians, while top pitching prospect Trevor Bauer leaves behind the Arizona desert for Cleveland. The Diamondbacks received young shortstop Didi Gregorius, who is a terrific defensive shortstop, although some scouts question whether he will be able to hit well at the big league level. Of course there were more players involved in the trade, but Choo, Bauer and Gregorius are without a doubt the centerpieces.
Choo, 30, will leadoff for the Reds, who absolutely needed to find someone that can get on base. This was a big need for the club and Choo’s .381 on base percentage in 2012 will be greatly welcomed into Cincinnati.
Bauer, 21, was the third overall pick of the 2011 amateur draft. While the youngster did struggle in a brief call up with the Diamondbacks in 2012, he projects as a top of the rotation starter. Before his brief call up in 2012, Bauer was dominating in the minors. Reports are that some in the Diamondbacks organization weren’t happy with some of his antics and how he handled certain situations. Perhaps he didn’t have a future in Arizona anymore, but one could argue that the Diamondbacks could have got more value in return for Bauer.
Gregorius, 22, is a great defensive shortstop that had been highly touted throughout the Reds organization. The issue some scouts have is that his hitting still needs some work. He will compete for the Diamondbacks starting shortstop job in 2013, but it will be a big boost if he can continue to improve at the plate. While this trade for the Reds will be looked upon in the short-term, for both the Diamondbacks and Indians we really won’t know how well they’ve made out for another couple seasons. Even if Gregorius does turn out to be an everyday shortstop and improves his hitting, you’ve got to think that perhaps Diamondbacks general manager Kevin Towers could have received more value in the deal.
The Reds remained busy on into Wednesday as they have also agreed to a deal with free agent infielder Jack Hannahan, who ironically was previously with the Indians. The 32-year-old will provide some depth on the Reds bench.
The Dodgers also remained active after their weekend shopping spree as they have reportedly acquired second baseman/outfielder Skip Schumaker from the St. Louis Cardinals in exchange for prospect Jake Lemmerman. The 32-year-old Schumaker should mostly share second base duties with Mark Ellis in 2013.