Originally Posted by Blitz Dorsey
I think if you look at it just in the nutshell of this season it would be tough to part with him. However, looking at his career minor league numbers, I would gladly give him up in a package (with Alonso and one other) if it meant getting Cliff Lee in return. Maybe Mez has put it all together, or maybe he's having a bit of a fortunate year. I don't know. All I know is he's struggled big time up until this season and the Reds just drafted a catcher in the first round for only the fourth time in club history (and second time in four years). Mesoraco has to be considered a legit candidate to be included in any deal and I wouldn't hate to see him go. We need to make a push this year ... it's been way too long for this storied franchise between playoff appearances. Good teams take chances and make themselves better before the trading deadline. And I don't think giving up on Mesoraco and Alonso would be that big of a gamble when you're talking about getting Lee in return.
I agree with your sentiment, however I like to look at Mesoraco as being a HS catcher from PA that also battled injury before this year. The "coming together" narrative is pretty decently worthy of conversation. I'd cringe to see him and another 1st rounder go. Here's why:
Looking at what Cleveland got from Philly last year for 1.5 years of Cliff Lee:
* Jason Knapp
- 2nd round young pitcher doing well in A ball at 17-18 y/o.
* Carlos Carrasco
- #52 by BA pre-2009 - a really fine pitcher in AAA at 22 y/o and striking out over 3 per bb and 8 per 9 innings.
* Jason Donald
- 3 round batter - #69 in BA pre-2009 - good AA numbers in 2008 but struggled similar to Frazier is in AAA in 2009.
* Lou Marson
- 4th round catcher in AAA at 23 y/o - OPS in minors of .754 driven by OBP.
Philly was able to hang on to 1st rounders Travis d'Arnaud and Kyle Drabek which helped grab Halladay in the offseason. They did give up 2 fine young arms, a decent bat and decent catcher. I'd give comps in the Reds system of Zach Stewart
(Knapp), Travis Wood
(Carrasco), Todd Frazier
(Donald), a young Hanigan
Philly went to the WS, riding Lee the whole way. He is
a stud, afterall.
Then in the off-season, for reasons I still don't know, Philly traded Lee to Seattle. I know it seemed to help bring in Halladay, who was willing to sign, but IIRC they could have kept both had they offered a bit more to Toronto.
Anyway, here's what Lee brought Philly for 1 full season's worth to Seattle:
* J. C. Ramirez
- must have good "stuff" since is minors ERA is 4.15, he was 20 in high A last year.
* Phillippe Aumont
- 1st round flamethrower with control issues, had a good showing in the WBC - #93 by BA pre-2009
* Tyson Gillies
- a speedy OF who OPS'd .916 last year in high A, driven by a .430 OBP, 14 triples, and good plate discipline.
Philly recovered the two arms they gave up at the deadline and also added a really nice young player with athleticism to mitigate losing Donald and Marson (BA #69 and 66 pre-2009 respectively).
So, what will Seattle hope to recover from their losses? I'd say they'd need a top arm and a strong bat, at least.
* D. Joseph
Perhaps the upside isn't the same, but the readiness is in the Reds favor for the players I've put up there (and the Mariners could use some readiness). Plus, this is only for half a season, so why should the Mariners get equal for their deal in the off season? That's why I wouldn't go crazy trading 2 first rounders and then some. Our top pitcher and top batter from last year is a really good starting point.