Today, possibly the biggest trade of the offseason thus far has gone down. The Padres traded 24 year old, Mat Latos to the Reds for quite the haul of players. The Padres will be receiving Yonder Alonso, Edison Volquez, Yasmani Grandal, and Brad Broxberger. The Reds receive a potential ace in Latos and the Padres really cashed in. I like the deal for both sides.
For the Reds, Latos bolsters an already solid rotation. He joins Johnny Cueto, Mike Leake, Bronson Arroyo and Homer Bailey. That rotation along with the big bats of Votto and Bruce should be very competitive in the NL central this year. Latos is still very young and already has two full years under his belt. He has a career ERA of 3.37 and a K/9 of 8.7. He has looked great but what worries me is that he is moving from the canyon of Petco Park to the hitter friendly stadium of the Great American Ballpark. I don’t think it should have a huge effect but it is something to watch for. Another very attractable part of Latos is that he is not arbitration eligible until the end of 2012 so the Reds should have him under team control for quite a few years to come.
Now let’s take a look at the Padres haul. It seems that the Reds have long been looking for a fit for Yonder Alonso and that team has finally come in the Padres. He was blocked by Joey Votto at first and the whole left field thing wasn’t exactly working out too well. The Padres have promising youngster, Anthony Rizzo at first but we are already hearing talks that he might be traded. The Rays and Mariners could both be great fits and they have young pitching to offer in return. I’m glad that Alonso has finally found a home and we can finally see that bat that scouts have been raving about. The next key piece is Edison Volquez. Volquez is still relatively young at the age of 28 and he has about 7 seasons played in the majors already. He really dominated in 2008 when he had an ERA of 3.21 and a K/9 of 9.5 but after that season he has struggled with staying consistent and healthy. Petco Park should help him, just like every pitcher and it isn’t too late to count him out as a mid-rotation starting pitcher. He’ll fit nicely with the young starting pitchers that the Padres currently have.
I love the addition of catching prospect Yasmani Grandal for the Padres. The Reds have catcher Devin Mesoraco who looks ready for the bigs, making Grandal expendable. Grandal, now 23, finished the year at AAA last year. He projects to be a good offensive catcher with solid defense as well. Grandal has shown great plate discipline posting a .401 OBP over the course of his minor league career. He could spend some time at AAA this year and possibly be up in the bigs towards the middle or end of the year.
The last piece of the trade is 23 year old right-handed pitcher Brad Boxberger. Boxberger was very solid as a reliever last year in the minors. Between AA and AAA he had a 2.03 ERA with a very impressive 13.5 K/9. Boxberger needs to work on his control but he has the stuff to be a good late inning reliever if all goes well.
The Padres really got a nice haul for Latos and I love the deal for them. They picked up some good young players that fit nicely for their team. For the Reds, they are looking good to make a run at the NL Central.
Filed under: Digging Deep - Analysis Tagged: | Brad Boxberger, Bronson Arroyo, Cincinnati Reds, Devin Mesoraco, Edison Volquez, Homer Bailey, Jay Bruce, Joey Votto, Johnny Cueto, Mat Latos, Mike Leake, Prospects, San Diego Padres, Trades, Yasmani Grandal, Yonder Alonso