Re: Pirates DFA Zach Stewart
There is a certain amount of revisionist history thrown out when discussing Zach Stewart. The Reds did not include Stewart in the deal because they looked into a crystal ball and saw that he would never reach the expectations that virtually everyone who saw him pitch in 2009 projected. They included him because that was what it took to complete the deal. They were willing to take the risk and once the deal was made, the Reds could only sit back and watch from a distance after surrendering their top prospect and let history run its course. It was a chance they were willing to take.
Lets not change who Stewart was on the day they traded him. He was the Reds top prospect and one of the better arms they had drafted/developed in years. What happened after that had nothing to do with the Reds or what they were giving up. There were key executives in the Reds organization who were visibly shaken by this trade at the time it was announced because of the fact that they had given up Stewart. I remember vividly speaking to one top player development exec that afternoon and voicing my surprise at the deal and he just shook his head with a look of disbelief.
I saw Stewart pitch that season and he had the most dominant look of any Reds minor leaguer I have seen. What happened after that, I am not sure. The Stewart I saw, with a 93-94 mph fastball and a lethal slider, was one heck of a prospect to give up. Your top prospect is your top prospect. That's what they gave up to complete the deal. There were no scouts at that time yelling "the king has no clothes" when the Stewart discussions were happening. Everyone saw the same thing.