Imagine if you will a player, with extremely good hitting ability, a body that should support growing power and enough discipline to hack it in the majors. All that has been holding him back is an inability to actually play a given position. Yet now… he seems to have found a position where he can supply adequate defense. The problem, you already have a player set to play that position.
Anyone remember when Daniel Murphy was the Mets first baseman and he got hurt? Then a prospect got promoted and he stopped being their first baseman. Daniel Murphy is hurt, but it’s not that serious, what IS serious is that Wilmer Flores is making a strong case to be the future Mets 2B in a hurry. What does one do with Murphy (whose bat is not the problem) if Flores is ready to replace him?
Forgive me if I rule out either player in the outfield. Flores finally found a home… let him keep it and Murphy cannot play in the outfield. So what do the Mets do?
Option 1: Trade Murphy – Murphy would be useful to a team needing a utility infielder with a contact oriented lefty bat. Perhaps a team who has questionable health at 3rd, 2nd or 1st and would like a player who could share time all across the diamond. There are probably a few teams who would be happy to get their hands on Murphy, but who might they give back?
Murphy is not worth a “Top Prospect” so I would probably rule out the top 10 prospects of every other team. Murphy is cheap and a relative “proven commodity” and that IS worth something though. Perhaps a deal could be made for his equivalent talent at a more needed position. Surely there would be a team that needs an infielder that could part with an equally talented outfielder. The White Sox could trade Dewayne Wise was the only one that remotely made sense and even that isn’t one I’d be happy about. So the answer would probably be trading Murphy for outfield prospects who were outside the top 10 but higher in the minors. The Yankees’ Zolio Almonte comes to mind as an example.
Option 2: Trade Flores – Flores with the ability to play 2B or 3B with the bat he has is actually pretty darn valuable and you WOULD be talking about Top 10 prospects from most teams but I wonder… would those