Saturday, September 1, 2007

Trachsel to the Cubs

I was wrong.

I was vocal that Steve Trachsel needed to be gone from the rotation on August 1 so that we could plan for the future. I assumed Trachsel would continue to pitch poorly, just as his peripherals indicated he would and that he had little trade value. I assumed that Garrett Olson and Brian Burres would be just as good. But instead it was Trachsel pitching brilliantly in August with Burres melting down after being moved to then pen and Olson performing poorly in his five starts as an Oriole.

And on the last day for teams to add players and have them eligible for the postseason, the Orioles sent Trachsel to the Cubs (another trade with Cubs?) for 3B Scott Moore and RP Rocky Cherry.

Moore was rated as a top 10 prospect in the Cubs system this offseason by Baseball America, John Sickels, and Kevin Goldstein of Baseball Prospectus. He then proceed to rake to the tune of an .899 OPS in Iowa this season, hitting .265/.373/.526 and improving his troublesome control fo the strike zone. He's only 23 so he's still young enough to have a legitimate career. His strike zone judgment is still worrisome, and he doesn't rate as a particularly good defender but he seems to be a guy that will hit enough to contribute over the next few seasons.

Cherry posted a 3.00 ERA in 15 innings out of the Cubs bullpen which means he's automatically the best pitcher in the Orioles bullpen. Maybe that isn't true, but he's still a nice arm to have around. His minor league track record isn't spectacular, and he is already 28. That being said, there's enough there to suggest that he can be a nice relief option in the near term. He strike out almost 10 batters per 9 innings in Iowa this season with other good peripherals despite a high ERA. The bullpen is sometimes a war of attrition, and Cherry is a nice guy to have in the mix.

It was a fantastic job by the Front Office. Moore and Cherry are certainly not cornerstones, but they could be cheap, effective contributors, a commodity that you can never have too much of.

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