On Bradley for Silva
Catching still further up: we’ve been asked a lot whether a Carlos Silva for Milton Bradley trade makes sense, or is likely, and so forth. I know it’s tempting, since we’re all really tired of Silva and he and Bradley both have massive contracts their teams would like to dump. So let’s consider briefly:
Bradley is due $9m next year and $12m in 2011. The Cubs recently “vehemently” denied that they might trade him for Toronto’s Vernon Wells (signed through 2014 at $12.5m, $23m, $21m, $21m, $21m). But the media at large seems to consider it possibly they’d trade for Gary Matthews Jr, due $11m and $12m, who is absolutely terrible and unwilling to accept that.
Or Pat Burrell, who’ll make $9m next year. If you’re the Cubs and these are on the table, I think you take Burrell, who had an awful 09 after years of being a productive hitter. At least Burrell can be a useful piece of even an NL team.
Then to Silva. Silva’s slated to make $11.5m for the next two years, and then you need to buy his 2012 option out for $2m. Now if we’re total robots about it, we can look at his 08 and find reasons he was unlucky and should be a decent enough middle-of-the-rotation guy. And last year he was injured, sure. But he’s looked terrible and been battered for two years now. He was such a bad clubhouse guy when the team was down they hired two (two!) players and a new managerial staff to improve things. If Silva was a free agent right now, what do you think he’d get? He’d probably be looking at a one-year turnaround deal for say $3m, more or less, depending on who bit.
Meanwhile, Milton Bradley isn’t a full-time player, but he hits. He also comes with a long, long history of issues, sure, but some AL team not already too tired of him would certainly throw a lot more they would at Silva to put Bradley at DH and maybe spend some time in the outfield if he’s particularly healthy. Or any team with a really, really good player’s manager who has had success dealing with challenging players and keeping them out of trouble and in the lineup.
So say you’re the Cubs. You’re determined to trade Bradley as far away as possible. You reasonably believe that if you traded him for the standard-issue random A-ball pitcher with a live arm you’d need to put $6m into the deal to get the other side to bite.
Why wouldn’t you do that instead of trading for Silva? Even if it’s $8m, or $10m?