If the Cards are going to add to the roster without sacrificing draft picks in the offseason, they need to avoid signing free agents and aquire talent via trade. With that in mind, we need to identify high-value assets that we have in areas that we likely won't need them in the mid-term future. How do we identify high-value? I'm going to suggest players performing above their perceived heads, or players who had dropped off the radar but are back on it now due to injury or a fluke bad previous year. Also the closer they are to the majors has a very real impact. I'm also going to suggest that we can conceivably get rid of 1-2 players in each category without taking an appreciable hit to the farm system. So who do we have and what are they capable of landing?
Lets start in the outfield, since it's pretty widely accepted that we have some promising surplus talent there.
- Brian Barton is currently excelling in AAA
- Jon Jay has produced at every level this year coming back from injury
- Daryl Jones is having a breakout year
Pitching is coming around within the organization - We have some strength on the right handed side of things and we might be able to get value for some getting deceiving results and could be a just a touch old for their level.. though perhaps some of them only amount to throw-ins.
- Mike Parisi is having a good year at AAA and has shown he can get MLBers out (though not consistently yet)
- Jess Todd has been tearing it up (though a bit cool lately)
- Chuckie Fick (I know, I know.. org player) Having a nice year
- Kyle Mura is also having a nice year
And some of our more offensively minded infielders
- David Freese is performing well at AAA
- Steve Hill can still hit
- Allen Craig is having a fantastic year
Assuming these guys finish out the remainder of the season as they've done so far... Mix and match - what kind of talent is available for a package of 3-4 of these guys? Could we fill our needs with that return? Are there others that I didn't list that should get value back as well?
I would imagine targets to be players with 1-2 years left on their contracts who could be usurped by up and coming prospects - or the converse of that - prospects who are blocked due to entrenched contracts or other prospects.