Wilson Ramos – 2010 Topps Update
November 26, 2010
Good Deal, Bad Deal?
The last post was of Matt Capps, who is definitely in the mix for the Twins’ staff in 2011 as the backup closer for Joe Nathan. I don’t know if Jon Rauch will be back, or Matt Guerrier, or Jessie Crain, or Pat Neshek, or…etc. etc. Most of the Twins relief core were either up for free agency or non-tender candidates.
Capps was acquired because conventional wisdom said they needed a ‘closer’ – though Jon Rauch was doing a heck of a job earlier in the season. It turned out the Twins got Capps AND Brian Fuentes. Rauch may have been miffed – heck I would have been a bit miffed.
But the Twins gave up one of their trading chits – highly rated catching prospect Wilson Ramos. Of course, the Twins have Joe “Jesus Of Cretin / Derham Hall” Mauer locked up for a long time. Also in the catching mix is Drew “I Hit Like My Old Man” Butera – who was Pavano’s personal catcher and Jose “No, Not Related To The Pinch Hitting Legend” Morales. Morales may resemble more of Matt LeCroy with better defensive skills, but Gardenhire loves defense (hence the Nick Punto fascination) and so Morales may need to learn to play the corners in infield and outfield.
So Ramos was facing a stacked deck in front of him. But at age 22 he was definitely valuable.
But trading him for a relief pitcher? Is that getting the full value for him, especially since the Twins staff was Pavano and four guys who could either pitch a shutout or give up 7 runs in 3 2/3 innings – and seemingly nothing in between.
It made total sense for the Nats – they have the Zombie Corpse of I-Rod propped up behind the dish, teaching everyone that if you don’t have power and hit .260, if you don’t walk you’re a millstone for the offense. The other catchers for Washington were also over 30, and they make I-Rod seem like Mauer.
Of course, the Nats plugged holes by signing guys like Kevin Mench and Willie Taveras. Pete Orr and Eric Bruntlett were in ready reserve in AAA! Oy….
However, one of the better prospects in the Washington system is a catcher (Derek Norris). However, none of the catchers in AAA or AA were more than organizational soldiers, so Ramos will probably have a major league job for quite some time for Washington unless he hits the buffet line too many times.
This is a trade that could turn out poorly for the Twins. Capps hasn’t been a paragon of consistency year over year, and as a set up man he may have issues since he has allowed 36% if his inherited runners to score.
Ramos, of course, could tank. Nothing is baseball is a given. But for me, I’d rather have a young catcher as a trading chit for a true need, than waste him on a trade for a position where there is always a surplus.
If, in five years, Capps becomes Goose Gossage circa-1978 and Ramos becomes Jim Essian from the same era, then I never said this, because my blog will be deleted and I’ll have erased all traces of it and moved to the Yukon, or Yakutsk, or Yerevan…