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Brian Walton's news and commentary on the St. Louis Cardinals (TM) and their minor league system

New York writer’s idea of Beltran to Yankees shot down

It is again that time of year when rumors of free agent interest and potential trades dominate baseball headlines. Unfortunately, it is usually difficult – if not impossible – to determine the original source and the credibility of the news.

In some cases, members of the media may come up with ideas that appear to be their very own. The only difference between them and random proposals floated on countless message boards is the size of the writer’s platform.

Two weeks ago, Joel Sherman of the New York Post floated an idea that the New York Yankees should probe the potential availability of former New York Met and current St. Louis Cardinal Carlos Beltran.

Despite the fact that no one connected with St. Louis has suggested that Beltran would be traded with a year remaining on his contract, Sherman was not deterred. The logic is driven by the availability of the designated hitter in the American League, allowing Beltran to rest his sore knees more often.

After all, the Yankees always get their target, right? They could very well lose outfielder Nick Swisher to free agency and Beltran would look good in pinstripes as a switch-hitting replacement, Sherman opines.

The writer didn’t stop there, however. He presumes the Cardinals are in the market for “an offensive second baseman,” offering up a Double-A player who turns 26 in May, David Adams.

I have to wonder why the Cardinals would want another Kolten Wong, let alone one who has a lower ceiling, is 3 ½ years older and no closer to the majors than the real thing.

Having just come from the Arizona Fall League where I saw both Adams and Wong play, I can honestly say that I’d much rather have Wong. I am pretty sure most impartial prospect-watchers would agree.

But wait, there’s more!

Sherman super-sized his proposed two-for-one deal – shipping and handling extra – by throwing in Joba Chamberlain. The hard-throwing pitcher may have been baseball’s most overhyped player in recent years, and that says something. The hefty hurler had one below-average year as a starter in 2009, then was returned to the pen.

In August, rumors out of the Big Apple had the Yanks considering demoting the ineffective Chamberlain to the minors. ESPN New York noted the now-27-year-old was “consistently hittable and increasingly disappointing.”

I am hard-pressed to come up with anything that the Cardinals currently need less than another right-handed reliever – especially an underachiever who has had trouble staying healthy and went through some off-field problems to boot.

Rather than letting his fantasy trade die there, Sherman used last week’s General Managers Meetings in California to test drive his not-so-grand idea. It tanked.

“The Cardinals say they would not consider trading Carlos Beltran…,” was the writer’s definitive finding.

That should not be surprising to anyone except Sherman, perhaps.

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Brian Walton

Brian Walton runs The Cardinal Nation and The Cardinal Nation Blog, covering the St. Louis Cardinals and minor league system.
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29 Responses to “New York writer’s idea of Beltran to Yankees shot down”

  1. crdswmn says:

    I guess the Yankees finally found the shopping mall closed.

  2. blingboy says:

    The way I see it, ” . . . would not consider trading Carlos Beltran . . . ” means Joel Sherman’s deal blows. Nothing more.

    Personally, I believe Carlos is next year’s Lance Berkman waiting to happen. So if the Yankees want him and his $13M salary I’d have him on a bus to NY tonight. We’ll take Rapada or Logan. Some prospects could be thrown in.

  3. Oquendo11 says:

    “He presumes the Cardinals are in the market for “an offensive second baseman,”

    If the Yankees are talking Cano (while picking up a large part of his salary) that would be worth considering. 😉

    • Brian Walton says:

      I would not be “offended” by that for sure! Even if required to pay all of his salary. Seriously, I read the Yanks are looking to cut salary for next season (luxury tax), but they’d be pretty foolish to do it that way.

      • Oquendo11 says:

        I read about the Yankees trying to get under the luxury tax threshold before and I do believe that is why they have been and will continue to be fairly quiet on the FA market.

        OT: I don’t know what is included in the luxury tax. When the talk surfaced earlier about A-Rod being traded to the Marlins, the main reason it would make sense to me would be if his salary would then count towards the Marlins and not against the Yankees, even if the Yankees paid almost all of it. If the Yankees can dip below the threshold by paying other teams to take their overpriced players that would seem to me to be counter to the intent of the luxury tax.

  4. crdswmn says:

    The Cardinals released Kyle McClellan. They also signed Rob Johnson (C) to a minor league contract.

    Not surprised the Cardinals are continuing their dumpster diving ways. At least it is a minor league contract, though when I said they should sign a minor league FA catcher, someone like Rob Johnson was not who I had in mind.

  5. Brian Walton says:

    I don’t get the dumpster diving talk. Most all organizations are starting to sign minor league veterans and these guys are usually the first to commit since little shopping/bargaining is required.

    Would you prefer the Cards not sign any minor leaguers? Look at the Memphis roster on the Matrix. Very little depth there even after a handful of Springfield promotions.

    • crdswmn says:

      No, I would prefer that the Cardinals not sign injury prone minor leaguers who are career Mendoza line hitters to come to spring training with the idea of giving him a spot on the major league team. Johnson wasn’t signed just for depth in Memphis. He was signed to compete with Cruz for back up catcher.

      Now, I will accept an accusation that I am overreacting. It wouldn’t be the first time. But this club has a history of putting sub par players on the major league team because of some attachment to them. JC Romero, Brian Fuentes, are just a couple off the top of my head. We know how those turned out. It’s just getting old.

      • Brian Walton says:

        Did Cruz show enough that his job should be guaranteed? Is competition bad?

        P.S. Koyie Hill did not make the team last spring. Cruz earned his job. I say, good.

        • crdswmn says:

          As long as Johnson isn’t given an advantage over Cruz because someone on the staff has an emotional attachment to him, then competition is fine. And from what I am hearing about Johnson, it won’t be much competition for Cruz, if all things are allowed to be equal.

          • JumboShrimp says:

            Johnson is a good defensive catcher. Either he catches for Memphis and gives us a ML caliber defender at AAA; or he provides depth in the event of an injury to Molina or Cruz; or he beats out Cruz who catches for Memphis. The Cards gain under any of these scenarios. Johnson makes up for loss of Anderson and means Memphis does not have to rely on Audry Perez alone. We have good pitching prospects at Memphis next year and we want them to enjoy good catching.

            • JumboShrimp says:

              Johnson already has 3 or 4 years as a ML backup. He knows the gig.
              He reminds me slightly of Matheny. Mike spent years with uncompetitive Brewers teams. when he got to Toronto he was a backup. He was not a glitzy guy. So too with Johnson. He’s a defender more than hitter. This is what the cards prefer.

  6. WestCoastbirdWatcher says:

    I wonder what it is some of you think Carlos Beltran thinks of his time here???????……… It would be meaningless and counter productive for him to comment on this……….. Bet he would like to play with the Yankee’s………………… Bet if BD can find a large enough distraction (to save 6 or 7 large)……you might see it……… Central without Houston is a different ball game……….Carlos is running out of years………… The Garcia off the mound today ….. no surgery,,,,,,,wait to evaluate at ST……..reeks of of Adam 2011………. they can’t be planning for him to pitch………. really……..but they collect insurance money against that contract that doesn’t appear on you payroll bonanza listing……… you have an excuse….you have cash…….you are developing equity in a young starter (possible)…….. they kept Adam in limbo not only because he was insured…….but because it could have provided Tony/Albert an opportunity to claim a noncompetitive posture that they would have been obligated to respond to in the winter of 2010 before their “delivery” obligation could be met post 2011………….. it just set Adam back 3 months……but it wasn’t about baseball …… it was about money and more ……… that’s the tip of the berg………..

  7. crdswmn says:

    The Marlins just traded their entire team to Toronto.

    • Nutlaw says:

      Wow. Wow. Like the Red Sox/Dodgers deal late last season, these teams are not screwing around when it comes to shedding payroll. Good for the Blue Jays, I think.

      • CariocaCardinal says:

        Not sure. If you wanted Buehrle and Reyes at those prices why not just pay them as FA’s? They do get a decent priced year of Josh Johnson though,

        • Nutlaw says:

          I assume that it is easier to attract players to come to Florida than Canada. They may not have been able to swing those deals in free agency.

          • blingboy says:

            Piliere has a subscriber article providing some sober analysis amidst all the hypeventilating. One thing he mentions is that the Jays may be contenders in the AL East next year.

            So maybe we can see it as Bud allowed the deal because it left baseball with one non-contender where there were two. For Miami fans and taxpayers the whole thing stinks, but that is their problem.


            • Nutlaw says:

              I’ll grant you that signing free agents and then flipping them for prospects is a great way to build the talent in your organization, as you aren’t giving anyone up in the process who you had in the first place.

              The Blue Jays got a lot of solid players without really draining their prospect pipeline. According to BA’s numbers, the Jays gave up their second, fifth, and eighth best prospects. Hardly crippling, given the level of talent come back their way. Miami was just looking to save themselves some cash, as always.

          • JumboShrimp says:

            There might be tax advantages to Florida vs Canada

    • WestCoastbirdWatcher says:

      Commish okays all trades ………….. He slowing any of this down?…….. poor Yanks….. Jays get a bunch…..Red Sox will be spending heavily……….. did the commissioner just make a serious intervention here?……….. what if all of that talent inters the market piece by piece? And it would have………. NESSEN…… make any concessions ………. Yanks network under pressure? There is so much more here than baseball planning. All teams get a big raise next year.

  8. blingboy says:

    I can’t imagine trying to be a Marlins fan.

    Good luck to Kyle.

  9. JumboShrimp says:

    Its too bad about McClellan, though Kyle has made a few millions, so its not a tragedy.
    McClellan had elbow and shoulder woes in the Midwest League, suggesting he could not endure the workload of a starting pitcher. It was a credit to our Sawbones that for once a pitcher was restored by surgeries. McClellan came back and showed quality pitches. He was terrific for 3 years as a ML reliever.
    It only came undone when the Cards tried him again as a starter. McClellan had a good attitude, but it might have been better for him to have requested a trade and remained a reliever.
    Lets hope Kyle can rehab and is able to return to relieving for a ML team.

    • blingboy says:

      My recollection is McClellan wanted to be a starter, pushed for it and the Cards accommodated him. He wouldn’t have had to go elsewhere to remain in the pen.

      In hindshight, a bad move. But I don’t blame him for chasing his dream, or chasing starter bucks, whichever it was.

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