Supposedly, (and I am not sure there is any scientific data supporting this) a trade is supposed to be ripe to be reviewed three years out. So, let’s take a quick look at those trades that the Astros pulled off in the summer of 2011 to help become the 1-1 draft juggernaut of the last 3 seasons.
Phillies’ side – The Phillies were 66-39 and in 1st place when the trade was made and basically won the same percentage the rest of the way and had the best record in the majors 102-60 at the end of the 2011 season. The wild card Cards beat them in the first round of the playoffs on the way to a WS championship, Pence was traded to the Giants at the 2012 trade deadline and the Phils have been in a free fall ever since.
Astros’ side – This was a clearer win for the Astros before the Cosart trade. They had a good young mlb starter in Cosart, a slugging 1B in Singleton and a future / potential great OF in Santana. After the Cosart trade, Singleton’s early struggles and Santana’s crash and burn so far – the win is a bit murkier – but with guys this young – maybe 3 years is not enough to judge….
Dan’s Call – Astros win – but not as big a win as it appeared earlier.
Braves’ side – When the trade was made the Braves were in 2nd place in their division (63-46) only because they were trailing the best team in baseball – the Phillies. Bourn cooled off after the trade and the Braves limped in (26-27) the rest of the way missing the playoffs by one game. In 2012, Bourn was much better and an All-Star. The Braves made the playoffs and were tossed out in the Wild Card Game. Bourn left as a free agent after the season.
Astros’ side – At the time of the trade the Astros were chewed on for not extracting one of the better pitching candidates from the Braves and things only went down hill as Clemens has been a HR machine pitching spottily for the Astros, Schafer had his “problems”, was waived and now plays with the Braves again, and Abreu is long gone. However, there is hope. Brett Oberholtzer pitched well in a 2013 audition, then stunk it up early in 2014 and got sent down to OKC. Since returning he has been 4-1 with a 3.02 ERA and like Dallas Keuchel has the look of a long term crafty lefty starter.
Dan’s Call – This is currently a Braves’ win – but Oberholtzer can overturn this, if he becomes a long term mainstay in the rotation.
Giants’ side – The Giants were in first place at the time of the trade and fell to 2nd and out of the playoffs by the end of the season (not that Keppinger was the trigger for this). Jeff did not do much down the stretch for the Giants and was released in the off-season.
Astros’ side – Sosa started 10 mediocre games in 2011 was released in 2012 and has bounced around the minors since. Stoffel has pitched fairly solidly as a reliever / closer in the minors for the Astros (except for a high WHIP this season) and you would think he might get a shot at the big team in September.
Dan’s call – Big shrug – this trade has not moved the needle much for either team…… However, since Jose Altuve was called up the same day as the trade from AA….maybe I should call this an Astros’ win.
So with 20/20 hindsight and 3 years under the belt – how do you call these trades?