It seems that Andrew Friedman is at it again.
The MacGyver of Major League Baseball has taken $28.6 million in salary over the next two seasons and turned it into four shiny new prospects, none of whom have even a day of major-league service time.
The prize of the Royal Quartet is Baseball America's 2012 Minor League Player of the Year and Master Masher of Baseballs Wil Myers. Along with Myers comes the left-hander Mike Montgomery, right-hander Jake Odorizzi and third baseman Patrick Leonard. Montgomery and Odorizzi
are were hanging out with Myers in the Top 5 of the Royals' prospect list, while Leonard -- a low-minors guy -- plays the part of Nick Punto in this trade.
The reaction from the Rays' side of things has been pretty exclusively optimistic, ranging from "it should be a good move" to "OH MY GOD We're going to dominate!"
But there is no doubt the departure of home-grown pitchers James Shields and Wade Davis will weigh heavily on Rays fans upon reflection, which is the approach the folks at DRays Bay have taken in their analysis thus far:
Trades like this will never not hurt.
We're fans, and fans grow attached to players. It's natural.
As Rays fans we make a special pact with the team, though. In rooting for them you must understand the economic scope the team works within. Players are assets. When you build enough assets you can attempt to trade them at their peak value to provide the best possible return, thus improving yourself for the future while not damaging, and sometimes even improving, the present. That's what was done here.
As much as it sucks to not have Shields in a Rays uniform any longer, it's the cold yet necessary move the team felt like it had to make.
Be sure to check back in with DRays Bay throughout the day as they analyze the deal from several different angles.
The consensus over at Baseball Nation seems to be very much in favor of the Rays, with Rob Neyer concluding that the Royals were essentially hosed in the deal:
Is Myers a sure thing? Of course not.
The only sure things in baseball are Bud Selig getting a bad haircut and the Baltimore Orioles finishing in last place.
What? Oh. Right. Then just the bad haircut, I guess. That's the only sure thing.
But Wil Myers is the latest winner of Baseball America's latest Minor League Player of the Year.
Based on this measure alone, it seems there's an excellent chance the Royals just traded away a future star ... and there's roughly a 50/50 chance they just traded a future superstar.
Bottom line? This is a desperate move by a desperate team. I'm reluctant to blame general manager Dayton Moore, because it's possible that owner David Glass forced this move, or something like it, on him. But we've heard no hint of that. Considering only the evidence at hand, we must assume that Dayton Moore considers this a good trade, in which the value of the players he's acquired is balanced by the players he's given up.
Jeff Sullivan over at Lookout Landing -- in a piece you need to read in its entirety because it is fantastic -- gives the move much more perspective, marking the deal as the end of an era in terms of trades and the misestimation of talent:
If front offices are all getting smarter and all blending together, it follows that there will be one final unforgivably stupid trade. There will always be trades that don't work out, because players will always be unpredictable, but as we've said time and time again, trades are to be evaluated by what's known at the time of the transaction, and eventually every trade should make sense for both sides. Teams won't make trades out of desperation or based on faulty analysis or whatever. They'll be made logically, sensibly. They'll be mutually beneficial. The days of immediately lopsided moves ought to be coming to a close.
One wonders if now, as of this evening, we've seen the last godawful trade in baseball.
The answer is "no, probably," and you have to be a big believer in the theory above, but in case you hadn't heard, the Royals traded Wil Myers. The Royals received James Shields and Wade Davis. In addition to Myers, the Royals gave up three talented prospects. The Royals are trying to win now, and one might refer to this as a "bold" maneuver, if one were being exceptionally, unreasonably nice...
Dayton Moore needs to be stopped, for Kansas City's benefit.
I think it's fair to say that Sullivan thinks the Rays won the trade.