The A’s have acquired 28-year old righty swinging outfielder Matt Holliday from the Rockies for Carlos Gonzalez, Greg Smith and Huston Street. The A’s gave up quite a bit to get a player who has not been dominant away from Coors Field in his career. Still, Holliday is by far the best hitter on the A’s right now and no one’s even close. So in that respect this trade makes a lot of sense for the A’s. Holliday played in 139 games for the Rockies last season and he was 173 for 539 (.321 avg, .947 OPS) with 107 runs scored, 25 homers, 88 RBIs and 28 stolen bases. Holliday has now played in 698 games in his five year major league career and he is 848 for 2,656 (.319 avg, .938 OPS) with 479 runs scored, 128 homers, 483 RBIs and 66 stolen bases. The A’s will need to still add more offense if they are to contend in 2009 but getting Holliday was a good start.
23-year old lefty swinging Carlos Gonzalez and 24-year old lefty starting pitcher Greg Smith both came over last season from the D-Backs in the Dan Haren trade. Gonzalez played in 85 games for the A’s last season and he was 73 for 302 (.242 avg, .633 OPS) with 31 runs scored, 4 homers, 26 RBIs and 4 stolen bases. The A’s no doubt weren’t impressed with Gonzalez’ plate discipline but he still has a decent upside. Greg Smith started 32 games as a rookie last season for the A’s and he was 7-16 with a 4.16 ERA and a 1.35 WHIP. He only allowed 169 hits in 190.1 innings last season but he had trouble with his control walking 87 batters. 25-year old right reliever Huston Street was essentially replaced as the closer last season by rookie Brad Ziegler. Joey Devine also pitched well enough last season late in games to make the A’s comfortable in letting Street go. Street pitched in 63 games (0 starts) for the A’s last season and he was 7-5 with 18 saves, a 3.73 ERA and a 1.21 WHIP. In four years with the A’s, Street pitched in 247 games (0 starts) in which he was 21-12 with 94 saves, a 2.88 ERA and a 1.07 WHIP.
In summation, this really looks like a trade that will help both teams and those are very rare in baseball today.