Thursday, February 2, 2012

Trade of the Day: 2/2/12

Okay, trade number two for the day. John Lannan made National news today as he was beat by his team in an arbitration hearing, meaning he'll receive a 2012 salary of $5m. That news was later trumped by their signing of Edwin Jackson, so word on the street is Lannan's already on the block. The Nats need to dump his salary somewhere, so I suggest the following to do so:

OAK receives P Lannan, P Cole Kimball, and P Josh Smoker
WAS receives 1B/OF Brandon Allen, C Landon Powell, and IF Eric Sogard

These teams already matched up once this offseason in the Gio Gonzalez deal. This trade benefits Oakland because they get a mid-rotation starter (albeit with middling stuff) who will be helped by their big ballpark and should give them 30 starts and 180 innings through 2013. If I were GM Billy Beane (and I'm not), I would prefer to have an Opening Day rotation of Brandon McCarthy, Lannan, Bartolo Colon, Dallas Braden, and Rich Harden (if he could be had back on a cheap major league deal with incentives). Graham Godfrey and Tyson Ross provide further depth, allowing Brett Anderson to heal from Tommy John surgery and Jarrod Parker, Tom Milone, and Brad Peacock to stay in the minors until at least August 1 (for service time and Super 2 reasons). McCarthy, Colon, and perhaps even Anderson could be bring back good value around the trade deadline. Harden, too, whether as a starter or reliever.
Kimball could be a possible piece in the A's bullpen picture, while Smoker could turn into one a few years down the road. A former first-round pick, the 22-year-old has struggled with command and as a starter. He fared somewhat better last year after moving to the bullpen and gets his strikeouts, so once the A's move on from the Brian Fuentes, Jerry Blevins, and Jordan Norberto, they may hope to find their other 40-man options of Smoker, Sean Doolittle, and Pedro Figueroa serviceable.
Aside from the money saved from this deal to sign E-Jax, it can perhaps Band-Aid a few weak spots on Washington's current roster. Allen gives them a backup 1B with some pop (or LF to face tough righties for Mike Morse if ever needed), Powell gives them a non-roster C pitchers enjoy throwing to with previous major league experience (and perhaps allowing them to flip the dissatisfied Jesus Flores for something useful), and Sogard gives them another middle infield option, a la Brian Bixler of 2011. (Alex Cora may be back on a ML deal too.) I might add that rumors have Oakland already shopping Allen, so this proposal has its merits for both sides.

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