Originally Posted by letsgojunior
IMO he's not going to have trade value if he puts up another 2004 like year, when he's slotted to make $11.5 and $12.5 M. A similar pitcher in terms of stats, age, and fall-off is Matt Morris, who went from making $10M+ in 2004 to just signing a contract for $2.5. In today's depressed market, $11-12.5 M says that you are a legitimate #1 big game pitcher (especially on a small market team).
And if you're correct regarding his trade value, I doubt that LA is going to pay much (if anything) of his salary, given that they could also flip him to a bigger market team without being responsible for any financial considerations.
And that's where the risk comes in. I'm not denying it's there, I'm just saying that small market teams have to take it on if they want to do big things. One bad year doesn't always make a bad pitcher.
His early usage scares me as well, but he also switched leagues in 2004, and played in New York, probably the toughest place to play in baseball. How much that had to do with his drop-off, I don't know.
This is all just speculation obviously, but I think a Kearns for Vazquez deal is a risk the Reds should take, and I say that agreeing with you 100% that Kearns is a force when healthy.