It’s Official: Mariners, Blue Jays, Phillies, And A’s Complete 4-Team Trade

Finally, finally, I can write about the big trade.

As I mentioned in a post earlier, I was very hesitant to write about the trade because it was never official and there were so many moving parts. Now that all the parts are in place and everything is written in stone, lets take a look at what went down between the Seattle Mariners, Toronto Blue Jays, Philadelphia Phillies, and Oakland A’s.

Phillies get: RHP Roy Halladay, RHP Phillippe Aumont, RHP Juan Ramirez, OF Tyson Gillies, and $6 million from the Blue Jays.

Blue Jays get: C Travis D’Arnaud, RHP Kyle Drabek, and 1B Brett Wallace

Mariners get: LHP Cliff Lee

A’s get: OF Michael Taylor

Why Philadelphia Made This Trade: GM Ruben Amaro Jr. has been enamored with Halladay since last season. And who can blame him? For my money he is the best pitcher in the game.

When Lee–the pitcher who Amaro acquired instead of Halladay at the July 31st trading deadline last season wanted CC Sabathia type money after the 2010 season–the Phillies set their sights on Halladay again.

Halladay should dominate the NL

This time, they got him.

They got him and were able to sign him to a three-year, $60 million extension–something they weren’t going to be able to do with Lee. Now the Phillies have the best pitcher in the game to go along with the best offense in the National League.

That’s a pretty good combination.

The Phillies also got perhaps their closer of the future in 6’7″ Aumont. Aumont is 20-years-old and was the Mariners’ first-round pick (11th overall) in 2007.

Aumont struggled a little bit when he was promoted to Double-A in 2009 giving up 21 hits and 11 walks in 17.2 IP.

Aumont did strike out 24 in those 17.2 innings, so his stuff was still there. If Aumont impresses in spring training he could find himself in the Phillies’ bullpen in 2010.

Gillies was rated as the fastest baserunner in the Mariners’ farm system by Baseball America in 2009. He has stolen 80 bases in 235 career minor league games.

Gillies is 20-years-old and has a .321 average and .419 OBP in 3 minor league seasons.

Ramirez was the 5th ranked prospect in the Mariners’ system heading into 2009 by Baseball America. Since signing with the Mariners in 2006, Ramirez has given up more hits/9 each year he has been in the minors.

He has a career 4.12 ERA in four minor league seasons and projects as a relief pitcher.

This trade is a perfect example of why the Phillies have become one of the premier teams in baseball. They trade prospects, they get prospects back. They trade star players and they get star players back.

The Phillies not only make trades so they can win now, but win for the future as well.

And do you know who is going to benefit the most from this trade from a Phillies’ perspective? Cole Hamels.

Remember, Halladay turned AJ Burnett into a complete pitcher. I foresee him doing the same thing with Hamels. Look for Hamels to have a big year in 2010.

Why Toronto Made This Trade: Plain and simple, the Blue Jays had to trade Halladay.

The longer the Blue Jays held on to Halladay, the less they were going to get. If the Blue Jays held on to Halladay until the July 31st trading deadline, they probably would have gotten 10 cents on the dollar.

The Blue Jays were able to land one of the best pitching prospects in the game in 22-year-old Kyle Drabek. Drabek, the son of former major league pitcher Doug Drabek is projected to be a front-line starting pitcher in the major leagues.

In four minor league seasons, Drabek has a 3.70 ERA and an impressive 1.26 WHIP.

The Blue Jays also were able to get the catching prospect they wanted in D’Arnaud. The 20-year-old D’Arnaud was the Phillies’ first-round pick in 2007.

He has struggled some at different levels in the minors, but in 2009 D’Arnaud hit 13 home runs in 126 games at Single-A Lockwood.

I like the move by the Blue Jays of getting Wallace from the A’s. The Blue Jays already are set in the outfield for the future with Adam Lind, Vernon Wells, and Travis Snyder so they really didn’t need Michael Taylor, who they acquired from the Phillies.

Wallace fills a need at first base for the Blue Jays. Wallace, who was traded to the A’s from the St. Louis Cardinals in the Matt Holliday trade hit .302 with nine home runs in the hitter friendly Pacific Coast League in 2009.

The trade for Wallace most likely means Lyle Overbay has played his last game as a Blue Jay.

Why The Mariners Made This Trade: If you are Mariners’ GM Jack Zduriencik you say to yourself “I can get one of the best pitchers in the game without giving up my top, top prospects–where do I sign?”

Lee gives the M's a solid 1-2 punch

Did the Mariners give up some good prospects? Sure they did. But they were able to get Lee and not give up SS Carlos Truinfel, OF Michael Saunders, or OF Dustin Ackley.

Lee, along with Felix Hernandez give the Mariners perhaps the best one-two punch in the American League. For one year and $9 million, Lee was certainly worth this trade for the Mariners.

Why The A’s Made This Trade: The A’s already had Daric Barton, Chris Carter and Jake Fox on the 40-man roster as first baseman. What the A’s need is a power hitting outfielder.

Enter Michael Taylor.

The 24-year-old Taylor is a man beast. He hits for average, power, he can run, and knows how to work the count–a lethal combination

In 116 games in 2009 between Double-A and Triple-A, Taylor hit .320 with 20 home runs, 21 stolen bases, and a .944 OPS. He will have a chance to win a starting outfield spot for the A’s in 2010.

I think if I was to give out grades for this trade it would go something like this:

Mariners – A

Phillies – B+

Blue Jays – B-…Giving $6 million to the Phillies is comical.

A’s – B

It will be really fascinating to look back on this trade five years from now. Of course, I will be here to write about it.

You can follow The Ghost of Moonlight Graham on Twitter @ theghostofmlg


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