ESPN.com contributor and former GM Jim Bowden has an interesting post up (Insider) on why the Texas Rangers should trade top prospects with the St. Louis Cardinals. Bowden believes that because the Cardinals need a middle infielder and the Rangers could use an outfield bat, especially with Nelson Cruz and David Murphy in their final years before hitting free agency, that it makes sense. And he made a compelling case on our show (Fitzsimmons & Durrett) on ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM on Friday.
But I'm not ready to do it. Why? Here are two of my reasons:
1. Who says the Rangers have to trade Profar? Just because Elvis Andrus is locked up through 2018 doesn't mean Texas has to trade the No. 1 prospect in baseball, according to Keith Law's rankings last month, doesn't mean it's automatic that they ship Profar somewhere else. The reasoning most use is that Ian Kinsler doesn't want to play first base. I can understand not fighting that this season because Profar's development isn't hurt by getting some Triple-A at-bats. But if Mitch Moreland struggles or the club decides that Kinsler could help the team more by playing in the outfield, you tell him to go play those positions next season. Kinsler is under contract to be a Texas Ranger, not to play second base. He knows that, too. So if it's time to move him, you move him.
2. Trade Profar for a piece that you know can help you at the big leagues sooner and later. He's the top prospect in baseball. If he fronts a package, Tampa Bay has to listen in regards to David Price. If the Miami Marlins, who have not started the season well at all, decide it's time to part with Giancarlo Stanton, they have to listen if Profar is dangled (and he would be.). Those are the types of deals that you use the Profar piece to go and get.
Bowden notes that the trade would be a risk for both GMs. You lose that deal, and it has ripples that extend for years. Jon Daniels isn't afraid to make that kind of deal. But I don't think he should at this point. Wait to see what's out there at the trade deadline. If it's a guy that can help Yu Darvish front this rotation for a few more years or a middle-of-the-lineup bat that's under club control for a while, you talk about sending Profar out. But trading prospects -- even for a guy that Bowden and many feel is "can't miss" -- just isn't worth it right now for a contending team like Texas.
Just my two cents. Your thoughts?