Re: Phillips for Kendrick and Wood???
I also prefer swinging a deal around Cordero-Fuentes that could be expanded to net us Izturis at SS. Why I would "key" it around closers instead of second basemen?
1. We've got many potential closer candidates knocking at the door (Masset, Burton, Bray, Ondrusek, Del Rosario), but no obvious heir apparents to succeed Phillips, or Kendrick for that matter, at 2B.
2. Reports suggest the Angels are looking to upgrade at closer and have begun to focus on that as an off-season priority, so if we want to swing a deal, we best be talking their language.
3. For a small-market team that hasn't made the playoffs in a decade, we're allocating too great a share of our limited resources for a closer. Cordero is among the elite closers working today. He's highly valuable to us, but potentially far more valuable to a team like the Angels. While we would take an undeniable hit giving up Cordero for Fuentes, that's a sacrifice we can endure if the return includes Izturis. He's not only a legitimate lead-off threat, but also a better all-around SS than the parade of talents -- Gonzalez, Hairston, Janish, Keppinger, Rosales, Sutton -- we've seen the past two years.
Yes, Izturis would only be a one-year rental, but if his play warrants it, we can pony up what it will take to keep him in the fold for 2011. There's a level of uncertainty attached to that, but there are also worse scenarios -- like plugging Patterson, Taveras or Hairston atop the order and thinking we had our offense set as far as fielding credible tablesetters.
Our bullpen is a strength, we have a solid if not stunning rotation, we have coalescing offensive power, but our tablesetters still seem to have trouble getting to first base. Time to rob Peter to pay Paul.