Braves Need A Shortstop III–Trade or Sign Options Update

The Red Sox traded Jed Lowrie to the Astros yesterday then signed Nick Punto. Clint Barmes signed as have Alex Gonzalez, Jamey Carroll, and host of others. The Braves still don’t have Frank Wren’s mythical “veteran shortstop that can hit.” Now what?

The Market

The free agent market is easily summed up; nothing there. Okay, that’s unkind. Nothing I would sign there. How’s that? Here’s the list as of this morning in neat little groups.

Good glove no bat

Ronny Cedeno – Slick fielder but hits like a pitcher

Jack Wilson – I like Jack but he like many others lost his bat in Seattle

Hits a little fields okay

Andres Blanco – Fielding was okay for Texas, hits a little from the left side a bit, should stop switch hitting

Jeff Keppinger – Not really a SS in a while but he can hit now and then

Old

Orlando Cabrera – Old. Nice guy. No longer has SS range

Alex Cora – Old. Nice guy. Lacks SS range

Craig Counsell – Old. Nice guy. No longer has SS range

Edgar Renteria Old. Nice guy. No longer has SS range

Omar Vizquel Old. Nice guy. No longer has SS range

Bad glove weak bat

Yuniesky Betancourt – Doesn’t hit consistently, erratic arm, equally erratic glove

Erratic glove but hits better than the rest

Ryan Theriot  Not really a SS but has played there a bit, Glove is shaky but bat is solid.

Note: This is not an endorsement of any of them.

 

A Trade Option

GM Frank Wren indicated he wanted to trade rather than sign a free agent. Based on what’s left of the FA market I doubt anyone would disagree. One name that came up about a week ago in a discussion and again last night was former Brave Brent Lillibridge.

Lillibridge was dealt to the White Sox  from the Braves in the Javier Vasquez deal. In Chicago and under the guidance of our new hitting coach he became a much improved hitter; .158/.273/.179 in 2008 vs. .258/.340/.505 in 2011. Bill James projects him to be .241/.311/.386 in 2012

He also improved his versatility by learning how to play all outfield spots as well as all infield slots. His infield glove remains dependable and he made several important and difficult catches in center field and right field for the Sox in the past two years. He finished 2011 with an rWAR of 1.9 and an fWAR of 1.3.

I could see a package of Lillibridge and Carlos Quentin for three or four minor league players being agreed to without ravaging our young pitching corps. We have first baseman Ernesto Mejia – blocked by Freddie FreemanBraeden Schlehuber a catcher blocked by Brian McCann and Christian Bethancourt meeting the Sox needs. Of course what I see and what the two GMs think mazy well be two different things. Let me know what you think!

Topics: Brent Lillibridge, Carlos Quentin, Shorstop, Trades, White Sox

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  • zackflagel11

    Mejia and Schlehuber have never been considered quality prospects, so I doubt they’d be of interest to the WhiteSox. They probably would look for more high-potential guys— I think they’d much rather prefer a package centered around Matt Lipka and JJ Hoover. I think a trade with the WhiteSox is most likely, as they, unlike the Os or Yanks, have real motivation to trade Quentin. If Wren wants to pursue this route, I have a feeling he’d be able to get something done.

    Also, Lillibridge has definitely become my favorite option for the utility. He and Prado would be one hell of a bench!

  • zackflagel11

    Mejia and Schlehuber have never been considered quality prospects, so I doubt they’d be of interest to the WhiteSox. They probably would look for more high-potential guys— I think they’d much rather prefer a package centered around Matt Lipka and JJ Hoover. I think a trade with the WhiteSox is most likely, as they, unlike the Os or Yanks, have real motivation to trade Quentin. If Wren wants to pursue this route, I have a feeling he’d be able to get something done.

    Also, Lillibridge has definitely become my favorite option for the utility. He and Prado would be one hell of a bench!

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