A few days ago, the Cardinals and Indians completed the first pre-deadline deal, sending Mark DeRosa to the Cards for Chris Perez and a player to be named later. This trade, while impacting the two players directly involved, probably had the biggest impact on the players not traded on the two respective teams.
I’ll start with the fallout on DeRosa and Perez, however.
|It is not a good idea to buy a DeRosa uniform, as it will most likely become outdated within a few months. (Icon/SMI)|
This trade certainly benefits DeRosa for the reasons Derek mentioned in his BoTR post yesterday. He will be facing, in general, easier pitchers and will have a monster in Pujols batting around him.
The Cardinals as a team do score less than the Indians, although I do not believe that will have more than a two or three run/RBI effect on his totals. That would affect someone more toward the bottom of the lineup, where the pitcher slot comes more into play. The move to Busch Stadium may also rob a home run or two from him, but I do not think the swap in stadium will have a tremendous impact.
The easier league and having Pujols in front or behind him outweigh the negatives and make this trade good for DeRosa owners, but overall the trade should not deviate his season-ending numbers far from what they would be had he stayed in Cleveland.
As I expressed in this BoTR post, I felt Perez could steal the job from Ryan Franklin, who was and still is getting extremely lucky. Well, now Perez leaves one volatile situation (or at least one that I thought could be) and heads to an even more volatile one.
For the long term, for those in dynasty leagues, this trade is great as it places Perez in one of the weaker bullpens in the majors and Wood is likely gone after 2010, if he even still has the job by then. You also have to take into account the chance Wood lands on the DL for stretches of time, giving Perez the opportunity to earn a few saves before he may officially take over the job.
Yous should not, however, think Perez is an automatic lock to earn a closer’s job in his future. There is no doubt he has the makeup with a hard fastball and a plus slider, but he has struggled with his control in both the majors and minors throughout his professional career. We can only hope that the soon-to-be 24-year-old will be able to overcome his control issues as he matures as a pitcher.
Otherwise, he will never move past the raw bullpen arm label and never become closer material.
Fallout: Indians infield
With Mark DeRosa gone, the other members of the Indians infield figure to benefit, namely Jhonny Peralta, Asdrubal Cabrera, Jamey Carroll, and especially rookie Luis Valbuena. Peralta and Cabrera will now have starting jobs at third and short respectively, with Carroll and Valbuena splitting time at second. Carroll should play mostly against lefties and the left-handed hitting (but righty throwing) Valbuena will play versus righties.
Fallout: Indians bullpen
Current Indians closer Kerry Wood’s job is safe for now, but his leash is even shorter now that the Indians have a bullpen arm they feel could be their closer for years to come. The two pitchers I thought could take over for Wood if Wood were to lose the job—Betancourt and Herges—are hurt by the trade as they now have another bullpen arm to compete with for that job. We will have to see who gets that eighth-inning setup role.
Fallout: Cardinals bullpen
If Ryan Franklin keeps getting saves as dependably as he has, then he has no reason to worry about losing his role. However, at 36 years old he is no spring chicken and should not be expected to pitch this well the second half of this year, let alone next year. The Cardinals younger bullpen arms, Jason Motte (and other potential relievers in their minor league system), figure to benefit from Perez’s departure as the path to the Cards’ closer role just became less obstructed.