With the trade deadline nearing, many teams will be in the hunt to improve their rosters for now and in the future.
I hate the term "buyers" and "sellers" because when you get right down to it, every team that makes a move is looking to buy something, whether it is a star player, or a long-term solution such as key prospects.
Two blockbuster deals have already gone down, as Sabathia and Rich Harden have found their way into the thick of the NL Central race. Now it is the St. Louis Cardinals turn to make a move and prove why when it's all said and done, they will once again strive towards October baseball. Although Albert Pujols has proven he can indeed carry a team, John Mozeliak and Tony LaRussa would love to add some protection for Prince Albert.
The target: Matt Holliday
Through the past two seasons, Matt Holliday has been establishing himself as one of the best hitters in baseball, and as a small town guy from Oklahoma, he wouldn't mind taking his stardom back to the Midwest. With Holliday, the Cardinals would have a 1-2 punch of him and Pujols, which is arguably the best in baseball next to Manny and Ortiz.
The Cards have the minor league talent to acquire Holliday. However, the major question is the cash. He is a free agent after the '09 season, and one could suspect he could bring home close to $200 million with Scott Boras representing him. Despite the lingering free agency though, I expect the Cardinals to make a move, and try to put a winner back in St. Louis for the rest of '08 and '09.
So without further ado, here's the deal:
Cardinals get: Matt Holliday
Rockies get: Colby Rasmus, Jaime Garcia, Bryan Anderson and Nick Addition
In this trade, the Colorado Rockies receive a star-studded center fielder, and future five-tool player Colby Rasmus. Bryan Anderson, who was on the US team in this year's Futures Game is a solid hitting catcher, who could share the catching spot with Chris Iannetta. Jaime Garcia is one of the Cardinals top pitching prospects, who has just recently been called up (possibly to be showcased.) Finally, Nick Addition, who like Garcia is a hard-throwing young lefty, has top of the rotation stuff, and would be a nice "addition" to the Rockies rotation in the future.
Another name circulating around trade buzz is the Blue Jays' A.J. Burnett. With a players option after this season, along with a high ERA and injury history, he would be a major risk for any team that gets him. But heck, what trades aren't risky?
A major contender in the Burnett sweepstakes are the Philadelphia Phillies, who are suddenly tied in the loss column with the surging New York Mets. Although the Phillies are the "team to beat" with their defending NL East pennant waving in the city of brotherly love, there is one crucial area in which the Mets have upper hand: starting pitching. With the acquisition of A.J. Burnett, the Phillies would have a strong 1-2 punch of Hamels and Burnett. With Moyer, Kendrick and the return of Brett Myers, they could have a balanced and productive rotation.
Here's the deal.
Phillies get: A.J. Burnett
Blue Jays get: Greg Golson, Jason Donald and Joe Savery
In this deal, the Blue Jays would acquire a speedy outfielder in Golson, who could play left field in the future and be a table setter for the likes of Rios and Wells. Joe Savery is a solid left-handed pitcher, though not the best the Phils have to offer. However, pitching is one strong point for the Jays and an area I am sure isn't a priority in a deadline deal. The key piece to this deal might be Jason Donald, a solid hitting shortstop who has 12 home runs already this season in AA Reading. The Blue Jays have found a difficult time finding stability at that position, which was proven last year after signing John McDonald to a two-year deal.