Kristin was worth a third baseman (actually, two) and a pitching prospect. However, that turned out to be Ty Wigginton, Jose Bautista (from the Royals) and Matt Peterson. Peterson is a prospect, but not in Capellan’s class, in my opinion. Wigginton is a joke player; Bautista was a Rule 5 pick the Pirates lost last season.
I like the pickup of Victor Zambrano better for the Mets. He has control problems, but I think they can be fixed, and they’ve got a good pitching coach. He may not help them this year, but I bet he’s their top starter 12 months from now. But they gave up Scott Kazmir to get him. What is it with the Mets, anyway?
A bigger trade, in my opinion:
Jeepers. Brad Penny and Hee Seop Choi, plus pitching prospect Bill Murphy — at least one of whom is likely on his way to Arizona — for Guillermo Mota, Paul Lo Duca, and Juan Encarnacion. I have no idea why the Marlins would want Encarnacion back, but I assume he’ll play outfield with Conine shifting back to first.
I don’t like this deal for the Marlins. Lo Duca’s a good player, but he tends to wear down as the season goes on. Encarnacion sucks. Mota is a heck of a pitcher, and should solve their setup difficulties, but giving up Penny and Choi and a prospect for that? I wouldn’t do it.
Jim Bowden — who makes things up from time to time, as you’ll recall from his days with the Reds (the Braves were going to trade Millwood for Hal Morris, remember that) — says that the Dodgers got Charles Johnson to replace Lo Duca. That’s a downgrade… But whether they get Johnson or not the Dodgers just helped themselves. If they do get Johnson, they’re the favorites. God, not Yankees-Dodgers again. I hated the late seventies the first time.
Also, the Phillies lost again (Boom-Boom Bobby was a major culprit) and are four back. And Larry Bowa’s still employed!