For all of the debate that involves Zack Greinke, everyone seems to feel that the Brewers would get an A level prospect. For comparison let's take a look at the Rockies trade with the Cleveland Indians last year. In return for Ubaldo Jiminez who had a greater number of years of service left on his contract, the Rockies received two B+ prospects and two C prospects. Considering Greinke has been more consistent and has more proven success the Brewers could possibly receive one A grade prospect and two or three C grade prospects at most. Here's a look at what each team may provide:
Braves: Tyler Pastornicky - Has struggled this year at the Major League level and may need a change of scenery as the Braves feel very strongly about Andrelton Simmons being their SS of the future. Pitching prospects returned may by Delgado or Vizcaino. Both project as hard throwing righties with Delgado's ceiling at a #2 rotation arm. Pick one of the arms and Pastornicky and that may be the max the Brewers get from the Braves for Greinke.
Orioles: Manny Machado and Dylan Bundy are completely out of the picture for the Brewers. An interesting name that will come up along side SP Brian Matusz, is JJ Hardy. Controlled for another 2 and 1/2 years, the Brewers may be able to ship Greinke and Izturis for Hardy, Matusz and C grade prospect.
Rangers: Profar is an untouchable as it comes. Josh Daniels believes that Profar and Olt are their core players for the future. Although desperation may take hold in Texas as they try and win the World Series after two failed efforts consecutively, Olt is the highest prospect to expect from Texas. Even then he has started to play 1B and LF, two positions that are not extremely blocked in the Rangers organization. Martin Perez, LHP, and Leonys Martin, OF, may be two names included in the talks for the Brewers to receive but it would take a series injury in the Rangers starting rotation to bring out the desperation of Texas trading either Olt or Profar for Greinke.
Angels: Earlier today Jon Heyman of CBSsports tweeted that the Angels will be in on the Zack Greinke derby, if and when it starts. Prospects you may see in return here include RHP Garrett Richards, who is 2 years out, and/or SS Jean Segura, who recently played in the futures game. It is hard to see the Angels come up with near ready MLB prospects to get a deal done for Greinke. An interesting name to watch for is CF Peter Bourjos, who currently lost his spot to 20yr phenom Mike Trout. A deal including Greinke and Morgan for Bourjos, Richards and a B level prospect would not be out of the question.
That's my outline for the Brewers possible return if they were to trade Greinke to one of those teams.
On another note I came across on interesting article on Rant Sports that highlights an interesting option if the Brewers were to become buyers after a strong start to the 2nd half. One of the obvious holes in the Brewers roster has been the lack of production at SS. It just isn't easy for a platoon of Ransom/Izturis to yield any kind of production. Although the recent addition of Jeff Bianchi to the Brewers roster is an intriguing move, the Brewers have an NL central basement dweller who is selling and has a solid major league ready SS in Jed Lowrie.
In order to pry Jed Lowrie away from the Astros, it would take a decent haul. One including and not limited to George Kottaras, Izturis/Ransom, a ML pitcher (Goforth, Brewers 10th rated prospect on MLB.com) for Lowrie and a low level pitcher. This would fill an immediate need for the Brewers while providing the Astros with a projectable bullpen arm in Goforth, a solid backup catcher in Kottaras and a fill in SS for the season in Izturis/Ransom. However, due to the recent addition of Bianchi, the Brewers seem poised to rely on in house options to provide value at SS which has been an issue. A move for Lowrie would definitely fill a hole on the Brewers roster.
He has become the odd man out in the Brewers catching depth. Although he provides nice depth and a LH bat off the bench, he has probably maximized his current value. It would be easy to see the Brewers trading Kottaras for a bullpen arm to either the Yankees, in need of a C, or Nationals who need to add a backup catcher and LH bat.
Don't expect more than a B level prospect for Rodriguez as his performance and salary make him less attractive to clubs in need of a bullpen arm. The Brewers may hang on to K-rod and take the picks that come with him next year, which not only keeps a shaky bullpen intact, but gives them a solid option if Axford and K-rod's performance was to improve in the 2nd half of the season.
I am personally not a believer in Morgan and would like to see Carlos Gomez get a chance to play everyday in the outfield along side Aoki, a pleasant surprise. Trading Morgan may yield a bullpen arm at most or another low level prospect, two/three years away from the majors.
That's all for now. Some food for thought and I would appreciate comments on how I can improve my posts.
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