Desert Deals: Breaking Down the Diamondbacks Trades

Forrest KobayashiSenior Analyst IDecember 14, 2007 were several trades around the big leagues today, but the Arizona Diamondbacks made the biggest splash.

Let's break down their deals...


Deal Number 1: Oakland sends SP Dan Haren and SP Connor Robertson to Arizona in return for SPs Brett Anderson, Dana Eveland, and Greg Smith, infielder Chris Carter, and outfielders Aaron Cunningham and Carlos Gonzalez.

So Arizona gets another top-flight arm to team with former Cy Young award winner Brandon Webb.

Dan Haren is an accomplished starter, and his move to the NL bodes well for his already-stellar numbers. Arizona's up-and-coming lineup means more run support, which will result in more wins.

Don't forget, though, that Oakland GM Billy Beane is a true mastermind. He knows what to look for in young talent—and got quite a quality return in this deal.

Outfielder Carlos Gonzalez is among the top prospects in baseball, and is the real centerpiece of the trade. Gonzales has the ability to put up statistics similar to those of New York Mets outfielder Carlos Beltran.

Dana Eveland is another name that sticks out, and the A's acquired three quality left-handed prospects. They should all be very important pieces in Oakland's rotation down the road. Number 2: Houston trades RP Chad Qualls, utility player Chris Burke, and pitcher Juan Gutierrez to Arizona in exchange for closer Jose Valverde.

The Diamondbacks said they needed to "reacquire depth" after trading away so many key pieces of their farm system, and they certainly did that here.

But it didn't come cheap.

Valverde is one of the top closers in the league. He's had injury issues in past seasons, but Houston needed to firm up its closer situation after the inconsistent Brad Lidge was traded to the Philadelphia Phillies.

I really like this deal for the Astros, as they add two big pieces in just under a week. They should be able to contend in the NL Central again, but I don't seem their being a legitimate threat to win the NL pennant.

There you have it—the two Arizona trades that went down today. For me, it's the end of finals week...and I'm just looking forward to going home tomorrow!