Friday, July 04, 2008

Brewers and CC Sabathia

There was a lot of chatter that came up today about the Brewers possible trade for CC Sabathia. Reports say LaPorta and Escobar. Is it weird that I'm more concerned about losing Escobar than LaPorta? I mean, I know Matt's hitting the cover off the ball, but Escobar is our SS of the future - it's unlikely we'll keep Hardy for too long because we should get something good for him, he'll be expensive and Escobar is as good, if not better. Removing Escobar really makes me wonder about the future at SS.

FoxSports broke the news this morning that the Brewers have Matt LaPorta on the block along with Alcides Escobar. Article here. Crucial part:

The Milwaukee Brewers are serious about trading for Indians left-hander C.C. Sabathia — more serious, perhaps, than any other club.

The Brewers' offer for Sabathia includes Class AA left fielder Matt LaPorta, according to sources with two other clubs that are interested in acquiring the pitcher.

Class AA shortstop Alcides Escobar also may be in the Brewers' proposed deal, one of the sources says.

And the Indians scouted the Brewers' Class A Brevard County (Fla.) affiliate on Wednesday night, looking at third baseman Taylor Green, according to the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel.

The Brewers likely would prefer to substitute a lesser player for Escobar, or perhaps would insist upon additional talent if the Indians demanded his inclusion. But if the Brewers indeed were willing to give up both LaPorta and Escobar, the Sabathia sweepstakes might be over before they started.

"I can not imagine anyone would top that," the first source said.

The second added, "That deal should get it done."


This article says the Blue Jays are desperate for a SS and therefore are shopping their starter A.J. Burnett and specifically mention both JJ and Alcides

This article says that we're so jacked to get a big-name pitcher that we've made it known that J.J. Hardy and Rickie Weeks are up for the taking. .


Once again, it's an insider article, so here's the text of Buster Olney's take today:

Some rival executives have put themselves in the shoes of Brewers GM Doug Melvin, and say privately that if it was their decision to make, they would swap a big-time prospect to get C.C. Sabathia. And according to sources, they have indicated a willingness to trade slugging outfield prospect Matt LaPorta.

The Brewers may also discuss adding an infielder to the deal, such as veteran shortstop J.J. Hardy. If Hardy were to be moved in this or any other deal, the Brewers feel confident that Alcides Escobar, considered one of the best infield prospects in the game, is ready to take over at shortstop.

The Indians recently dispatched multiple scouts to watch the Brewer Double-A Huntsville affiliate, a development that is being read by rival organizations as a clear sign that Milwaukee continues to be the favorite to land the 2007 Cy Young Award winner. The Indians need help on offense, and the Brewers are loaded with position-player prospects such as LaPorta, was Milwaukee's No. 1 pick in 2007. In 82 games in Double-A this season, LaPorta is hitting .291, with a .404 on-base percentage, 20 homers, 66 RBIs, and a .584 slugging percentage. Officials with other teams think the Brewers will make a deal, because Milwaukee's window of opportunity with Ben Sheets as a part of its rotation is drawing to a close; Sheets intends to test free agency this fall.

"If you get Sabathia and team him with Sheets, you have a legitimate 1-2 punch at the front end of your rotation that maybe only Arizona can match (with Brandon Webb and Dan Haren)," said an AL executive. "If they go for somebody off the 'B-list,' they may have to overpay and they may not get the results they're looking for. Sabathia
is the only sure thing that's on the market right now."

"And what happens if Sheets breaks down again, the way he did last year. Then the Brewers won't have somebody who can lead their rotation."

The Brewers are a mid-market team that must rely on its player development to compete, so trading a star prospect like LaPorta would be a major sacrifice. However, rival officials note that the Brewers have an excellent track record in scouting and drafting and got a boatload of picks in the recent June draft. And if Milwaukee were to deal for Sabathia and then see him walk away as a free agent at year's end, along with Sheets, the Brewers likely would receive four compensation draft picks.

"You might see them have five picks among the first 35 in the draft," said an NL official.

Mark Attanasio, the Milwaukee owner, is said to have a serious desire to see his team in the postseason -- and keep in mind that if that were to happen, it would be the Brewers' first trip to the playoffs since 1982. The Brewers are currently two games behind the Cardinals in the wild-card race, and 4½ games behind the Cubs in the NL Central -- even after their bullpen implosion in Arizona Thursday.

The Indians have also had scouts looking at Brewers' third base prospect Taylor Green, writes Tom Haudricourt.


A poster on the boards found this over on the ESPN boards while looking for trade news. I thought it was cool enough to pass along:

As an Indians fan, I've come to accept the fact that Sabathia will be traded. It's definitely hard to come to grips with that given he's been an Indian since 2001 as a 20-year-old kid. BUT...that's just the nature of the business.

In any event, I know I speak for the overwhelmingly vast majority of Cleveland fans when I say I hope Milwaukee is the team we seal the deal with. Aside from the excellent, young talent we would receive in return, I think there's definitely a mutual respect between fans of the two cities. Milwaukee and Cleveland are similar in many ways and I think fans of both sides understand this. The fan turnout for the LAA-CLE series at Miller Park last year was awesome. Very obvious both fanbases share the same type of passion for the sport.

So hopefully both sides can get a deal worked out in the near future. In which case, we'll definitely be pulling for CC and the Brew Crew to go all the way.

Good luck the rest of the season.


Tom Haudricourt gives his 10 reasons this trade will happen

This article about the lack of excitement this trade-deadline includes this about the Brewers:

Brew view: Clubs that have checked in with the Brewers say they're being so aggressive in their hunt for a big-time starting pitcher, they might even be willing to include J.J. Hardy or Rickie Weeks "in the right deal." The Brewers have onrushing 21-year-old shortstop Alcides Escobar tearing it up in Double-A. So their middle infield would be covered long-term, and some combination of Craig Counsell, Bill Hall (if he's not dealt) and Joe Dillon potentially could handle it short-term. Let's say this again: The Brewers are a team you should not take your eyes off in the pre-deadline hysteria. "They'd listen on just about anybody for the right pitcher," said an official of one club that spoke with them. "And they're still very deep in their system. We've got nine prospects on our list from their Double-A club alone."

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