St. Louis Cardinals Ripped Off in Mark DeRosa Deal

Peter FleischerSenior Writer ISeptember 16, 2009

It may not be his fault, but John Mozeliak has been bamboozled.

Who would have thought that when Mozeliak acquired Mark DeRosa from the Cleveland Indians in late June that he would trade for Matt Holliday, who would then go on to have an MVP-caliber second half?

And there was no way that Mozeliak or anybody else could predict the wrist injury that DeRosa endured less than a week after beginning his stint with the Cardinals.

But the fact of the matter is that DeRosa has hit .230 for the 'Birds. He's struck out 45 times in only 187 ABs, and his eight home runs in 54 games are deceptive; he's got only 20 RBI.

DeRosa is due to be a free agent at the end of the season, and even if he wants to sign with St. Louis for a discount and try to be the ultimate utility man that many saw him being in the Gateway City, how much longer is he really going to be productive?

DeRosa is due to be 35 at the beginning of next season, but even if he can play a few more solid years, now that Brett Wallace is in the Oakland organization, the price to get him is much too steep.

Chris Perez is already a solid reliever at the age of 24. Although his 4.17 ERA is a tad high, he's also got more than a strikeout per inning pitched, and is certainly a potential closer in the majors.

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And how about Jess Todd? The player-to-be-named-later in this deal was actually a huge name to lose out on. In only his third professional season, Todd was rushed to the bigs with Cleveland, but has the stuff to be a possible stud in the future as well. He's already got over one strikeout per inning in the big leagues, and held hitters to a batting average against of around .200 at Triple-A.

With Ryan Franklin suddenly pitching like Eric Gagne (the Brewers edition), and both Todd and Perez, 23 and 24 respectively, this trade is looking like a potential disaster for the Cardinals.

Unless DeRosa can play through pain and have a big end to the season, Mozeliak has bargained away two of his best young talents for a rent-a-player that can barely hit over the Mendoza line.


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