Andrew’s thoughts: This is quite the salary dump.
A year ago, AJ Reed was all the rage. One hundred and forty one abysmal MLB at-bats later, he’s kind of an afterthought. Like, when I got the trade accepted e-mail, it took my brain a moment to recall who he was. I thought it was Addison Reed for a split second. Off-season depth charts aren’t worth much, but he’s like fourth at 1B for Houston. His .236 BABIP indicates that he was super unlucky, but still. He struck out 34% of the time. It was just a disastrous limited stint for him with the Astros last year. We absolutely shouldn’t give up on him and he’s hit at every level he’s played at so he’ll probably be fine, but speaking purely in terms of value, you would think his is greatly diminished at this moment in time.
Meanwhile, Stephen Strasburg was awesome again last year. I guess $66 is expensive for a guy who is always hurt and who you can’t reliably bank on to pitch for you in the playoffs. Still, I’d be pretty happy with 20-25 Strasburg starts supplemented by five from some replacement pitcher. On a rate basis, there aren’t many better than Strasburg, so whatever innings he does give you are likely to be of the elite variety.
For Team Canada, there was definitely a need to free up budget space, so I get it. I guess both teams are taking risks of varying degrees: TC that Reed can be a useful hitter (can’t be much worse than a $24 Lucas Duda, right?) and HLR that Strasburg’s arm doesn’t simply fall off or become absorbed into his torso somehow.
Jordan’s thoughts: I really do not have a feel for this trade. Both of the players exchanged are guys I would personally stay away from. Sure, if you get either one, in some favorable deal, great.
I like watching Straburg pitch. So I guess I’d prefer to have him. But, the price tag is right in the range where I start to sweat. He’s easily capable of making it look like a bargain. But, well, he’s pitched 200 innings once in his career. That was three years ago. That’s pretty distasteful.
AJ Reed was pretty crappy in his first MLB experience. It is amazing to me that all prospects don’t break out great out of the box. I’d like to be patient with him and see what happens. But, if I were in a position of needing an ace, I’d trade AJ Reed in a heartbeat.
If I’m HLR, I’d rather use this bullet after the draft. I think it would have existed.