Buster Olney decided to bust out the strangest trade rumor in a while. In a wide-ranging conversation with WEEI, Buster Olney was asked about what teams might trade for Rays' star David Price.
Olney suggested the Red Sox and Cubs as potential deep-pocketed suitors, which has at least a veneer of sense to it. He then stated that, if the Cardinals got into the mix, they could blow other teams out of the water. It is true that they could do that, I guess, but it defies logic to explain why the Cardinals would do it. The Cardinals would be trading away young pitching talent to fill a gap they really don't have, forfeiting depth they really could use to meet needs they actually have (at last check, in order, shortstop, shortstop, and shortstop).
Yes, the Cardinals have good farm depth, but so do the Rangers, Mariners, or even the Padres, all of whom have more need for a star pitcher than the Cardinals, who just re-signed Adam Wainwright to a lengthy, expensive extension.
Don't get me wrong. David Price is not a guy you would turn down if he cost nothing in terms of prospects and money, but he'd cost a lot in both (to acquire and to keep, respectively, which you'd assume would be the intent). Given the aforementioned extension to Adam Wainwright as well as an expensive Molina extension last year, I don't think the Cardinals are in the mood for another expensive high-end type.
While I doubt the Rays want to pay Price long-term, I also wonder what their motive for trading him would be. He's only in his second year of arbitration, and has a third one left (although they're already paying him $10m this year, a number almost sure to rise next year). They seem to be in the thick of a very winnable AL East. I guess if they fall out of contention, they might be more willing to trade him. But they'd have to get a pretty substantial package back for an ace pitcher with a year-plus of club control left, even at the deadline.
I don't want to overreact. Olney didn't claim to have any intelligence on this one. He didn't say that someone in the front office was whispering this to him. He said he was guessing. It seems like just the meanderings of a person who is not terrible bright but still gets paid to write about baseball for a living.
Sure, "baseball writer says dumb thing" isn't really an interesting headline anymore, but this just struck me as such an odd logical leap for a writer to make that it was worth a mention.
Oh, if only you or I could get paid so much to say dumb things into a microphone or on the internet for a living!
Instead, you can read dumb things I have to say, for free.