Saturday, December 4, 2010

Padres deal Gonzalez to Boston; receive 4 prospects

In a move that was inevitable, the San Diego Padres traded All-Star first baseman Adrian Gonzalez to the Boston Red Sox, in exchange for three prospects:  right-handed pitcher Casey Kelly, first baseman Anthony Rizzo, and outfielder Reymund Fuentes.  The Padres will also receive a player to be named later, although according to Peter Gammons, the player is "not a prime guy."

Adrian Gonzalez had a great 2010 campaign for the Padres, hitting .298/.393/.511, with 31 HR's and 101 RBI's.  He also finished fourth in the NL MVP race, and lead the Padres to a 90 win season.  He had three All-Star appearances, 2 Gold Gloves in his five year stay in San Diego.  He will go to a team loaded with offensive stars, and a team that can still add another big bat.

We all know what the Red Sox are getting, so lets take a closer look at what the Padres are getting back.

  • RHP Casey Kelly:  Kelly was the Red Sox top prospect, according to both Baseball America and SoxProspects.com.  He will be 22 at the start of the 2011 season, and was Boston's 1st round pick(30th overall) in 2008.  Here is what SoxProspect.com says about Kelly:  "Fastball has excellent downward movement, sitting at 90-93, and can reach 96.  Curveball has potential to be a wipeout pitch.  Expected to be a great defensive pitcher."  MLB Comparison:  Kevin Brown.  2010 Statistics:  AA Portland:  3-5, 5.31 ERA, in 21 starts.
  •  First Baseman Anthony Rizzo:  Rizzo will be 21 at the start of the 2011 season.  Rizzo is ranked as the #3 prospect in the Red Sox system.  He was drafted in the 6th round of the 2007 draft.  Here's what SoxProspects.com says:  "Tough-as-nails 1st baseman with an excellent build.  Solid overall approach, good eye, and plus gap power to all fields."  MLB Comparison:  Todd Helton.  2010 Statistics:  .263/.334/.481, with 20 HR's and 80 RBI's.
  • Outfielder Reymond Fuentes:  Fuentes will be 20 at the beginning of the 2011 season.  Fuentes was the Red Sox 1st round pick in the 2009 Draft.  Baseball America ranks him the tenth best prospect in the Sox system, while SoxProspects.com had him ranked at #13.  Here is what SoxProspect.com says:  "The type of player that will make highlight reels.  Line drive hitter, makes excellent contact, but without much power.  Has plus plus speed, and excellent range and defense in center."  MLB comparison:  Jacoby Ellsbury.  2010 Statistics:  A Greenville:  .270/.328/.377 with 5 HR's and 41 RBI's.  Also swiped 42 bags.
So the Padres get three intriguing prospects, but was this enough?  Personally, I say no.  For example, when the Padres dealt Jake Peavy, the key to the deal was said to be minor leaguer Aaron Poreda.  But the Padres also got Clayton Richard, who projects as their #2 starter in 2011, after a solid 2010 campaign.  None of the players the Padres received are ready for the big leagues.  Kelly had an awful 2010, and Rizzo plays 1st base, which might be the Padres deepest position.  The Padres should have gotten a big-league ready player, such as Jed Lowrie, Daniel Bard, or Jacoby Ellsbury.

Time will tell if this deal works out for San Diego, but its obvious that the Red Sox had the upper hand in this deal.

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