I raised this question once before, but, is the “Trade Matt Cain” meme the worst thing ever?
Select quotes from an article published yesterday on SFGiants.com:
The discussion over whether the Giants should trade Matt Cain already is a lively one, conducted on radio talk shows and Internet fan sites and by baseball reporters nationwide.
Does lively mean infuriating? And at least two of those three sources (maybe even all of them) are terrible, terrible sources for information. Sports radio? Blech. Internet fan sites? Guh. Baseball reporters? Erp.
Ideally, the Giants would keep Cain to maintain their formidable tandem of 24-year-old right-handers at the top of the starting rotation. Asked during his end-of-season summary whether Cain and National League Cy Young Award candidate Tim Lincecum will be off-limits in trade talks, Sabean said, “In my mind, they are.”
Good, Sabes. But, to our defense, some wacky things have spewed forth from your brain chambers. Speed ‘n Defense 2: Electric Caught Stealing; GAMERS; Romo DFA’d accidentally; Eugenio Velez; Dan “I’m a First Baseman now” Ortmeier; We need more CF’s; etc.
The article then puts on for a little bit about how GM’s don’t like to share their innermost thoughts with MLB.com and then it moves on to some quotes from scouts. Men of baseball. Grizzled dudes with radar guns. Unwashed, possibly grumpy, old men who know talent when they see it. I’m talkin’ ’bout scouts, son.
Scout #1 is sane and rational:
“I certainly wouldn’t want to move him unless I absolutely had to,” a scout for a National League team said of Cain, whose 30-43 career record belies his 3.74 ERA. “I think he’s going to get better. With continued maturity, he’s going to be a dominant guy.”
Scout #2 was doing whippits before he was quoted:
But the consensus of scouts said Cain doesn’t quite qualify for the tiny group of truly untouchable players.
“The only guys I’d say would be untouchable with anybody would be the Albert Pujolses or the Joe Mauers of the world,” a scout representing an AL team said. “There aren’t too many guys in our game about who you’d say, ‘I can’t trade him.’ I think it’s very closed-minded if you would say he’s untouchable.”
First, I like that the scout is quoted as saying “the Albert Pujolses” because it just sounds weird. You can’t trade Cains for the Pujolses, it just won’t work! Secondly, Matt Cain just-doesn’t-win-games and because of that, he stinks.
A scout suggested that if the Giants dangled Cain for a hitter besides Fielder, they probably could obtain two prospects along with the hitter they needed. He added that one of the prospects ought to be a pitcher who is almost Major League-ready to help cushion the loss of Cain.
Matt Cain for Tony Gwynn Jr. and two A-ball players! Make it happen Sabes!