Well, I guess the title says it all. Keith argues that given the paucity of stars on the team (i.e., three), the holes in both the rotation and lineup, and the dearth of talent in the upper levels of the minor leagues, it makes more sense to trade Prince this offseason and rebuild for a season or two, rather than try to prop up the current team and pray for a lot of rain on non-Gallardo starts in 2010.
More on the jump.The holes in the lineup are 3rd (where a previous Keith Law post says Gamel is a poor fit), catcher, right field, and center, not to mention everyone in the rotation not named Gallardo. (He calls Suppan "one step above a batting-practice pitcher," Bush a back-end starter, and recommends declining the option on Looper and turning Parra into a reliever.) Propping up a team like this is going to be prohibitively expensive, upwards of $100 million in total salary. (In it is also a reminder that everyone's favorite ROY candidate in Milwaukee is overachieving.) Moreover, we don't have the upper level prospects to trade our way out of our problems. Thus, Law recommends dealing Prince and looking to make a run in 2011.
The most interesting piece of the analysis is this:
Of course, Melvin also could do nothing and just run more or less the same roster out there in April, re-signing Mike Cameron (who turns 37 this winter) to play center and hoping his range doesn't continue to fall, hoping that Parra takes a step forward after a lost 2009 season, hoping that a bullpen full of soft-tossers won't keep the team from contention, and so on. It's the worst option of the three, an indecisive move that will leave the franchise worse off in the long run.
This is interesting because this is exactly what Melvin would typically do, IMHO. I'm dying to see what happens.
Note: the article is subscription-only, though it's been stolen and posted here.