Originally Posted by Eric_Davis
To receive a player of Saarloos' age with the number of innings he's pitched in the Majors so far, the ONLY scenario for making the trade if you're giving away younger talent is that the upside of the younger player must be better than the Major Leaguer, and the upside must be progressively better the younger the player is as his chances of reaching the Majors diminishes the further away that he is from being there.
ED, I am quite aware of trade dynamics. My point was that the A's liked Neu as well, a similar soft-tosser that got results as a minor leaguer. Neu put up fairly good numbers for the A's- for one year- and then fell off the face of the earth. The very same could happen with Shafer or he could have a longer go at it.
Regardless, Saarloos will not improve the Reds rotation but rather improve its depth at mediocrity. Is that worth the potential higher upside you speak of in the player traded. Yes, if Shafer is Mike Neu, but either way Saarloos is not the pitcher the Reds needed to add to the rotation to make any difference in the upcoming season.