Wednesday, December 5, 2012
Oakland A's, the perfect trade partner*
By Mark Saxon
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The Oakland A's came to the winter meetings with one primary goal: to find a shortstop.
Meanwhile, other teams here are working them relentlessly to see if they can pry an outfielder or starting pitcher off their roster via trade. The A's have enviable depth in both those areas, with Yoenis Cespedes, Chris Young, Coco Crisp and Colin Cowgill all capable of playing center field alone, and with five returning starting pitchers, all under 26 and quite affordable.
Meanwhile, the Dodgers' biggest needs are starting pitching and outfield depth. Perhaps their best trade chip is shortstop Dee Gordon, who is blocked by Hanley Ramirez for years to come. Is it feasible something could be worked out? Possibly, though Oakland's scouts seem to have a mixed opinion of Gordon, some wondering if his slim body type will hold up to the rigors of being an everyday player over time.
Also, the A's need for a shortstop might be short-term as they're hopeful their first-round draft pick, Addison Russell, could be ready by 2013 or 2014.
The Dodgers might have an opportunity to fill a need or needs by swapping with Oakland, but they probably can't wait long. The A's are one of the more popular teams at these meetings.
*UPDATE: While the above scenario might make some sense conceptually, the teams have not had active discussions about trades recently, sources said.