The Cardinals are apparently giving up relievers Trever Miller, P.J. Walters and Brian Tallet with Rasmus. In return, St. Louis will receive backup outfielder Corey Patterson, relievers Octavio Dotel and Mark Rzepczynski and starter Edwin Jackson. Now, I will be the first to admit that the Cardinals needed some pitching. But I would have taken a starter, as that would have allowed them to move McClellan back to the bullpen.
Instead, they went overboard, adding two relievers plus a starter. And this isn't even going into the insanity of giving up important pieces for relievers.
The starter, in this case, is Edwin Jackson, who, at 29, probably already qualifies as a journeyman. He's also a free agent at the end of the year, meaning there is almost no chance he will be back next year. In return, all they had to do was give up was immensely talented center fielder Rasmus, who put up 4.3 WAR last year as a 23-year-old, near All-Star levels.
Rasmus was apparently expendable for the unforgivable sin of getting on Tony La Russa's bad side, despite being affordably signed through 2014. La Russa, who has never (Scott Rolen) butted (Ozzie Smith) heads (Jim Edmonds) with (J.D. Drew) a player (Brendan Ryan) before, took the spat public, forcing the Cardinals' hand in dealing the young slugger.
There isn't even a chance of making this deal sound good. At least with the J.D. Drew deal (the closest comparable I can think of), the Cardinals traded him the year before his contract was up and got prospects in return. In this deal, every player the Cardinals get is pretty much what they will be.
There is almost nothing positive I can think of to say about this trade. This article is also featured at Hot Corner Harbor