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Trade Rumors: Jim Bowden's Big Board

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One of ESPN's recent additions to their online baseball coverage has been former Nationals GM Jim Bowden, who currently writes The GM's Office blog for The Worldwide Leader. And even though Bowden certainly has some odd manners of evaluation that probably shouldn't be repeated by anyone, he still can provide some unique takes about the role of a GM and players in general.

Today, he posted a massive post regarding the trade deadline, including lists of which teams he believes should sell and which should buy, as well as analysis on the best-available players at each position this summer. We'll cover some tidbits here, but you'll have to swim over to in order to read the entire thing.

  • Bowden mentions that, "The Rays would take [Carlos Pena] back if the Cubs eat all the money, but that's not happening." That seems hard to believe at this point. I can believe that the Cubs would want more than just salary relief for Pena, but would Tampa Bay really be willing to take him back? Chicago also has another top bat in Aramis Ramirez, although given his no-trade clause a deal is highly unlikely.
  • Apparently the Padres would love to get out of paying Jason Bartlett's 2012 salary, and they're receiving mild interest from multiple clubs at this point. The Padres still have 24-year-old Everth Cabrera, who recently got called-up after hitting .305/.370/.406 in 45 games with Triple-A Tucson.
  • He labels Cleveland as a possible landing spot for the Dodgers' James Loney, given Cleveland's emphasis on defense and suggestions that Matt LaPorta could replace Travis Hafner at designated hitter.
  • Bowden likes the Atlanta Braves as a fit for Houston center fielder Michael Bourn, noting that, "The Braves need a center fielder to replace the ineffective Nate McLouth and have a farm system deep enough to make an offer that the rebuilding Astros can't refuse."
  • He lists San Francisco, Boston, Seattle, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia and Los Angeles (the Angels, obviously) as possible landing spots for Carlos Beltran, arguably the top player on the market. Here's a look at some players that could replace Beltran in right field for New York.