The Texas Rangers have two good middle infielders, so the best prospect in baseball is starting the season in Triple-A. The St. Louis Cardinals have three good outfielders, so the second best prospect in baseball is starting the season in Triple-A. The Cardinals one glaring weakness is at shortstop. The Rangers spent all winter trying to trade for a young power hitting outfielder, only to fall short at the end.
So, naturally, there’s seemingly constant speculation about a possible trade between the two franchises. This speculation got pushed to the forefront on Tuesday, when Cardinals GM John Mozeliak was asked about the idea by Jim Bowden:
Mozeliak’s comment essentially boils down to “yes, I’d consider acquiring a 20-year-old potential superstar shortstop if I had the chance”, which, well, of course he would. There’s nothing there to suggest that the deal has been actually discussed by either organization, or that this hypothetical trade has any chance of happening. Even with Elvis Andrus signing his long term extension today, the Rangers still have plenty of options to keep Profar, and the Cardinals have other shortstop options that won’t require them to give up Taveras.
There’s a reason the #1 prospect in baseball — per Baseball America’s rankings, anyway — has never been traded in the season that he was considered be the best overall prospect in the game. A swap of the #1 and #2 prospects — technically, BA rated Taveras #3 this year, but given that Dylan Bundy is starting the season on the DL with elbow issues, we’ll just give them credit for flipping those two to better account for pitcher attrition — would be historically unique. It’s probably not going to happen. But, let’s just say it was on the table… does either side say no?
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