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  1. Not to mention the budget relief gained.

    Comment by R.J. Anderson — April 24, 2009 @ 3:43 pm

  2. What’s Crawford got left on his deal?

    Comment by Kevin S. — April 24, 2009 @ 3:50 pm

  3. Certainly makes some sense. As a Giants fan, I would like him patrolling the OF in AT&T. What would you expect the Rays would want in return (obviously this is all speculation, but I’m curious)? The Rays have talented arms in their system, talented young OF replacements, and talent literally littered all over the diamond. Just thinking out loud, but I would love to see the Giants move Randy Winn in a deal and/or Nate Schierholtz if he’s just going to be a 4th OF. The Giants also have a wealth of young pitching in the minors Bumgarner, Alderson, Sosa and Barnes and in the majors Lincecum, Cain, Sanchez and maybe eventually Noah Lowry again. The Giants seemingly also have depth at C with Bengie and current 3B Pablo Sandoval as well as Jackson Williams (certainly an offensive liability, but a defensive whiz) and Buster Posey. Any chance if Crawford were on the market you could see the Giants as a player for Crawford?

    Comment by Josh — April 24, 2009 @ 3:53 pm

  4. Great topic, Dave. Very insightful and timely – it really got me thinking about teams that might be interested.

    Like R.J. pointed out, Crawford is just about to get much more expensive, and on top of that, the outfield FA market next year might not look too pretty by October.

    If Holliday’s Oakland experience dampens his value, Bay re-ups in Boston, and Vlad’s injury ends up being serious (several “ifs” I know), suddenly the opportunity to acquire Crawford would look even more attractive.

    You could make an argument at that point that he’d be the best available outfielder, via FA or trade (if he were to become truly available).

    Comment by Jacob Jackson — April 24, 2009 @ 3:55 pm

  5. He has a 10 million dollar option for next year with a 1.25 million dollar buy-out.

    Comment by Tyler — April 24, 2009 @ 3:56 pm

  6. If Desmond Jennings was the real deal, I wouldn’t mind Crawford leaving for DJ. But that won’t happen until at least a year. There would be some serious back lash from the Rays fans.

    Crawford has a lot value in defense, whihc he should have a gold glove. And he can’t be put down the order with his salary which is a little high for his current production. But I say last year was just one of those years and we should see him pick up his game in a month like he always does (usually in Toronto but that is in late June).

    Comment by theraysparty — April 24, 2009 @ 4:09 pm

  7. A serious injury for Vlad isn’t that much of a stretch. I don’t think it would surprise anyone if he continues to show signs of breaking down.

    As for Crawford… I think the phrase is “eminently tradable”.

    Comment by whitty — April 24, 2009 @ 5:14 pm

  8. Dave, you had to know this question was coming but…any chance the Mariners could put together a package for Crawford that’d make sense for both teams?

    Comment by Jeff Nye — April 24, 2009 @ 6:19 pm

  9. Last year with CC, he just didn’t pick up any steam. You have to think if Crawford doesn’t injure his wrist he would have improved his production considerablely.

    With that said, if CC were to be traded the Rays are looking for you talent to restock there minors. They could use an answer in catcher, if Navi doesn’t return to ’08 form, and a closer would be another ideal choice for the Rays.

    Finally, is it possible to trade CC for a better ballpark?

    Comment by Rome — April 24, 2009 @ 6:36 pm

  10. I love Carl, as a fan that trade would be a knife to my gut. I’m hoping that they will somehow re-sign him, but I know the harsh realities of greedy wall street guys such as the Rays’ owners. The more in their pocket the better ;so I’m sure we can kiss him goodbye. The DJ’s and Joyce’s are very cool to say the least but Carl has been PROVEN for years.

    Comment by Tone — April 24, 2009 @ 6:45 pm

  11. I don’t think the Mariners have enough minor league depth to be interesting here. I see Clement, Aumont, and Morrow as the main possibilities, but why would Seattle want to trade away any of these guys (except Clement) in this stage of rebuilding?

    The Giants? It’s a slightly better possibility. Bumgarner and Posey are pretty much untouchable. I could see Villalona headlining a deal – as far as I can tell, Tampa Bay doesn’t have an in-house replacement for Carlos Pena. Randy Winn? Maybe. Tampa Bay is so deep, it’s hard for me to make realistic trade scenarios involving them.

    Comment by David — April 24, 2009 @ 8:19 pm

  12. I’d trade any of those three at this point in a Crawford trade, honestly; now that Aumont and Morrow are relievers they’re a lot less valuable in my mind, and I see Clement only ever blossoming elsewhere (similar to the Adam Jones situation, although he is much less talented than Jones), plus Adam Moore is waiting in the wings.

    Crawford/Gutierrez/Ichiro would still be one hell of a defensive outfield, and Crawford would give some badly needed left-handed hitting as well.

    If Clement/Aumont and a minor piece would get it done…man, I’d have to think awful hard about it.

    Comment by Jeff Nye — April 24, 2009 @ 8:28 pm

  13. I know, I hate the Wall Street guys. How dare they attempt and sustain success given a ridiculously low placement on the revenue curve!

    Greed!

    Comment by R.J. Anderson — April 24, 2009 @ 8:57 pm

  14. If I were a general manager, I’d be reluctant to acquire any power/speed guys whose performance has inexplicably tanked the past two years. There’s no “innocent until proven guitly” when you’re doling out million dollar contracts.

    Comment by Johnson — April 25, 2009 @ 12:51 am

  15. Wild idea…possibly a three way. I would send kazmir and niemman to the pirates for nate mclouth. This would entice them seeing as they have little pitching and they always deal away what talent they do have. Mclouth can impact right or center and Jennings WILL produce IF he is healthy. If Price is supposed to be the ace down the road and wade davis having such a high ceiling, I wouldn’t see it as a risk. Crawford would go to the rebuilding M’s and round out a nice out field while Seattle sends…oh I don’t know…michael saunders to Pittsburgh. You guys probably think this is crazy and unlikely but like I said it’s a wild idea.

    Comment by Dan — April 25, 2009 @ 12:57 am

  16. If Jack Z can’t extend Beltre and/or Bedard, who is going to be standing in the infield besides Felix and Lopez? Branyan is winning some hearts (including mine) at first, and I suspect we’ll see what Cedeno can do at short soon, but on the mound and at third there is quite a void. I’d gladly trade Clement or new relievers Morrow and Aumont at this point, and Crawford would further solidify our awesome outfield, but we may need to save those guys for trades covering other gaping holes.

    Comment by Marlowe — April 25, 2009 @ 3:29 am

  17. The general idea actually makes a good amount of sense. Something like this maybe?

    Tampa Bay sends Kazmir + Niemann to Pittsburgh and Crawford to Seattle
    Pittsburgh sends McLouth to Tampa Bay
    Seattle sends Aumont to Tampa Bay and Saunders to Pittsburgh

    Doesn’t look all that implausible to me.

    Comment by David — April 25, 2009 @ 10:59 am

  18. You really think Tampa will give up Crawford, Kazmir, and Niemann for McLouth? How does that make sense at all?

    Comment by bikozu — April 25, 2009 @ 11:48 am

  19. McLouth and Aumont.

    Comment by Jeff Z. — April 25, 2009 @ 12:04 pm

  20. If you replaced Kazmir with Sonnasatine you might have a plausible idea. Kazmir has struggled recently, but there’s no reason to dump him for pennies on the dollar.

    Comment by LukeW — April 25, 2009 @ 12:36 pm

  21. responding to bikozu: While Kazmir infamously struggles in the first inning and from start to start on top of that, he still has strong trade value. Niemman is a 26 yr old rookie who got the 5th spot only because he is out of options and Tampa wanted to polish Price. Remember Edwin Jackson’s above 5 era out of ST last year? He was out of options too and made the roster. It comes down to who is replacable in my eyes, which both Kazmir and Niemman are considering the prospect talent we have at pitching. Crawford is in his final contract yr and there is no guarantee he will be resigned, plus he will have a 10 million dollar tag next yr. Would you want to pay him 15% of this budget minded team’s salary or would you try to get the most for him? Mclouth is an allstar caliber outfielder with a bigger left handed bat than crawford and has a better arm. Shipping out Kazmir would make salary space too. I can see why you would disagree, two starting pitchers for an outfielder sounds prodigal, but more lavish trades have been made.

    Comment by Dan — April 25, 2009 @ 1:53 pm

  22. That is insane

    Comment by nick — April 25, 2009 @ 2:46 pm

  23. Most of the trade ideas have Aumont/Morrow as a reliever if they stayed as reliever I’d be okay with a trade but they probably will not once they get traded most teams will view them both as a starter and then the deal will look very lopsided after that once they become TOR starters.

    Comment by Slurve — April 25, 2009 @ 3:06 pm

  24. Aumont, maybe, but it’s highly unlikely that Morrow will ever be a starter again.

    Comment by Jeff Nye — April 25, 2009 @ 4:10 pm

  25. Put down the meth, step away from the computer, seek rehab.

    Comment by Matt H. — April 25, 2009 @ 7:48 pm

  26. Pagining Kenny Williams….? Not a Sox fan or follower, but what can they put together?

    Comment by Big Oil — April 25, 2009 @ 8:36 pm

  27. Eer…paging*

    Comment by Big Oil — April 25, 2009 @ 8:37 pm

  28. This is a really critical point.

    Comment by Rex — April 25, 2009 @ 8:55 pm

  29. Why shouldn’t Crawford be traded? I don’t buy into the “face of franchise” argument. The Rays are in very good shape for years to come. As long as they can put together a winner with their relatively finite resources, they will be fine and dandy.

    1. He’s a “big name.” Increases his perceived trade value.
    2. He’s expensive for the Rays.
    3. There is, without a doubt, a market for him.

    Iwamura (~4+ MM option for next year) and Bartlett (goes to arbitration for 2 more years) should also be prime trade candidates.

    Comment by Rex — April 25, 2009 @ 9:13 pm

  30. Besides, wouldn’t Longoria be the “face of the franchise” the Rays want? Him or Price or Upton…

    Comment by Kevin S. — April 25, 2009 @ 10:27 pm

  31. Trading for one or two year players is what led to the 101 loss season in the first place. All the M’s should be doing is trying to clear the horrendous contracts they have on the books and developing young talent. Crawford won’t help do that, resigning Bedard and Beltre definitely won’t do that.

    Comment by Scott — April 26, 2009 @ 8:03 am

  32. If the Rays were a Cincy or even Baltimore stage of development I might agree, but this team is the real deal and should compete for a title this year. Winning a world series this year is a short-term goal, and short-term goals come at the expense of long-term ones.

    What would you rather have, 4 playoff appearances or 1 world series? I’d take the ring in a heartbeat.

    Comment by Scott — April 26, 2009 @ 8:09 am

  33. No, horrible talent evaluation is what led to the 101 loss season.

    There is no reason for the Mariners to do a Cleveland-style rebuild.

    Comment by Jeff Nye — April 26, 2009 @ 11:07 am

  34. I wouldn’t. I’d much rather my team be the 1990s Braves than the ’97-’03 Marlins.

    Comment by joser — April 26, 2009 @ 12:01 pm

  35. Except McLouth’s defense is horrendous and he really hasn’t proven that last year wasn’t the exception to his bat.

    Comment by Ckremer — April 26, 2009 @ 1:22 pm

  36. How about trading Crawford to the Yankees? They have a gaping need… and the $$$ to straight out buy him from the Rays.

    Comment by LukeW — April 27, 2009 @ 1:18 am

  37. He hasn’t tanked. He is 27 this year, and you can expect reasonable consistency in the ages of 28-34, barring injury.

    Crawford is coming into his prime people.

    Comment by Ray — April 27, 2009 @ 8:22 pm

  38. Yea, but smart low-budget teams always think 5 years into the future to gain maximum value

    Comment by Ray — April 27, 2009 @ 8:26 pm

  39. dollars is exactly the issue. trading kazmir and crawford makes excellent sense, though I don’t know if this package would tempt the rays. They are two of the most expensive players on the team, two who would fetch the most on the trade market, and two in areas of great depth for the rays (outfield, starting pitching).

    if I were tampa i might demand pittsburgh’s closer, since they desperately need more bullpen help.

    Comment by tom s. — April 27, 2009 @ 8:35 pm

  40. I don’t think the White Sox would want to take on Crawford’s contract, but they’d definitely would listen. I don’t know that we’d have much to put together that the Rays would find attractive. Our best prospects are probably almost untouchable right now, and the farm system is very poorly rated in depth. I’ll list a few possibilities, but I can’t see the Rays pulling the trigger for anyone.

    C Cole Armstrong
    1B/DH Brandon Allen
    RHP Johnny Nuñez
    OF John Shelby
    IF Jayson Nix

    They won’t send away Beckham, Poreda, or Viciedo any time soon.

    Comment by Newcomer — April 28, 2009 @ 5:19 pm

  41. This is an interesting discussion to me because I’m an Angels fan and ever since I realized that Crawford could be available after this season I’ve been dreaming of the Angels picking him up. Imagine how dangerous the Angels high-pressure offense would become with Figgins and Crawford hitting 1-2?

    Obviously, the issue becomes: what does Tampa Bay need? The lineup and pitching staff have very few holes. Some people here have mentioned a need at the catcher position, and the Angels are pretty deep at catcher – though I would hope that Napoli is off limits (Hank Conger is a very promising C at AA who may have Napoli-like power).

    The Angels also have a lot of depth up the middle, but Tampa Bay doesn’ tseem to need any help there. Anybody see anything in the Angels worthy of moving Crawford?

    Comment by JeffM — June 29, 2009 @ 5:01 pm

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