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ESPN offers yet another bad Cardinals trade idea

Last night, while watching another boring college football bowl game on ESPN, I fell asleep in my easy chair. I must have been exhausted, because when I awoke, it was April 1.

Being April Fool’s Day is the only way I could comprehend a new article from ESPN’s David Schoenfeld in which he proposes what may be the most one-sided trade I have ever seen.

Maybe it is something in the water fountains in Bristol. Just last week, Jim Bowden, also writing for the self-proclaimed “world-wide leader,” came up with what at the time had to be the most ridiculous trade proposal of the winter.

The former Cincinnati Reds general manager suggested with a straight face that the St. Louis Cardinals should send pitchers Shelby Miller and Trevor Rosenthal plus outfielder Jon Jay to the Colorado Rockies for outfielder Carlos Gonzalez.

It appears that his co-worker Schoenfeld did not want Bowden to hold the “worst proposal” title for long, as the former cooked up an infinitely worse idea.

There are two common threads between the two articles. The first is that the writer tries to come up with trade proposals from various teams that would knock the club currently holding a star outfielder off its feet. The second common thread is that the author would have the Cardinals badly overpay for said player.

Schoenfeld’s Cardinals-related idea is this: The club would send its top two pitching prospects in Miller and Rosenthal plus top overall prospect in Oscar Taveras to the Miami Marlins in return for outfielder Giancarlo Stanton.

That is a much greater give than his colleague Bowden’s CarGo whopper. Yet, Schoenfeld apparently wanted to make sure the Marlins would also throw in their gaudy home run fountain when he included a fourth Cardinal in his proposal to head south – first baseman Allen Craig.

Adding Craig took a really bad idea over the line into the land of utter ridiculousness.

I get that Stanton is just 23 years old and has a very bright future. The three young Cardinals are not yet there, but are as close as anyone can be. Then, there is Craig.

Though he is five years older than Stanton, Craig has also played in the majors three years. His OPS to date is .863. After three seasons, Stanton’s career OPS is .903. In 2012, despite playing just 119 games due to injury, Craig finished 19th in the NL MVP vote.  Stanton appeared in 123 games, also limited by injury. He finished 24th in the MVP balloting.

Don’t get me wrong. There is no doubt that Stanton is a better player than Craig with a longer, more substantial career likely ahead. On the other hand, the difference between the two is nowhere near six cost-controlled years each of the Cardinals’ top three prospects in Taveras, Miller and Rosenthal. The latter two have already reached the majors with Taveras knocking on the door in 2013.

In his article, the writer also included potential Stanton deals with Texas, Seattle and Pittsburgh. Others can pass judgment on them.

Schoenfeld’s editor may have indicated his reaction by the title of the article as posted – “Impossible Giancarlo Stanton trade ideas.” Yet nowhere in the article does the author discount his own proposals or suggest he is anything other than completely serious.

In fact, he concludes by saying, “… I’m not sure the Marlins would do any of those trades.”


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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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7 Responses to “ESPN offers yet another bad Cardinals trade idea”

  1. crdswmn says:

    It is amazing to me the number of Cardinals fans foaming at the mouth to get Stanton. Some would gladly make that trade. It’s like they see a shiny new toy they want and are determined to get it no matter what the cost. Doesn’t matter that Stanton plays a position we don’t need. If he played MIF I could sort of see the clamor for him, but just to get him because you want him, and give up the farm to do it, makes zero sense to me. What happened to logic and rationality? What happened to making deals to fill needs not wants? Am I just too practical anymore?

    I find the obsession with getting Stanton pretty ridiculous and I wouldn’t want any of the people making these trade proposals to be a GM of any team I root for.

    • Brian Walton says:

      After Bowden’s CarGo “idea,” I posted a poll. 88 percent were against the deal from the Cardinals perspective, with the other 12 percent either undecided or willing to consider it. I figured the 12 percent were Rockies fans that happened across the article, but perhaps some are the out-there Cardinals fans you have encountered.

      This Stanton proposal is so unrealistic that I did not even bother to put up a poll.

      • crdswmn says:

        There actually may be more than that, because many of these people wouldn’t make the trade for CarGo but would for Stanton. Probably because Stanton is younger and doesn’t have the huge contract attached to him. And I am not talking about idiots either. Some of the people are people that I normally consider pretty reasonable, but they lose it where Stanton is concerned. I know the guy is good, but no one is that good.

        • WestCoastbirdWatcher says:

          Just the shrinkage from Holiday alone, with just one of those players. would make it a bad deal. The reason these things are even being discussed is just a ploy. Commissioner isn’t going to let them trade Stanton unless somebody pitches in that much talent. It is just an attempt at selling a few more tickets in Miami. The current count is 3 surprise purchases, all dying to come out of the closet.

  2. Bw52 says:

    When will people learn that you can never have too much pitching.People need to see farther than the end of their noses.Besides Cards could have their own Stanton in Oscar Taveras.Carpenter is ancient and Wainwright could leave after 2013 and Westbrook isn`t getting younger.

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