Thoughts about the baseball world.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

M. Cameron to Padres, X. Nady to Mets

More wheelings and deelings from San Diego. This time it's Xavier Nady, their first baseman/outfielder, who they've shipped off to the New York Mets in return for centerfielder Mike Cameron. And suprisingly, this trade isn't half-bad for the Padres (excuse my anti-Towers bias).

The New York Mets get a mediocore utility player in Xavier Nady. He's not near starter-quality, not for a team like the Mets anyway, who already had 3 decent outfielders in Cliff Floyd, Carlos Beltran, and Victor Diaz, who filled in for Cameron when he he got injured. Perhaps Omay Minaya (Mets GM) is looking for younger players, but Cameron was only 32, and Nady at 27 is about-middle aged. Nady has played sparingly the past 3 seasons, mostly as a backup outfielder and getting in some starts this year at first base. In that time he hasn't really shown much at all - career numbers of AVG .261 | OBP .320 | SLG .414. They've gone up, steadily, but at 27 there's not much time left to improve, and it doesn't seem like he'll ever be anything more than a middling player - certainly not any better than their OF of the future Victor Diaz.

The Padres, meanwhile, get a very capable centerfielder in Mike Cameron. He missed a large portion of last year after an outfield collision with Carlos Beltran, which required surgery and cost him the rest of the season. Still, he was playing at a decent level - he's been known as an extremely low-average hitter (.249 career) but was hitting at a decent clip last year, at AVG .273, which would have easily been a career high. More importantly, he also gets on base at a decent rate (.342 last year, .340 career) and in the past two years has slugged in the .470-range. Factor in his Gold Glove defense, and Cameron's a valuable centerfielder that could play on any team.

This seems like outright robbery for San Diego. They give up an unproven backup utility player who doesn't look to have a real future, and in return get one of the better veteran centerfielders in the game. Why would Minaya trade Cameron? Unless Cameron still hasn't fully recovered, and the effects of the collision are more serious and long-term than we've been led to believe, Cameron is a player superior in every way to Nady. Despite the age difference, Cameron is still very serviceable, and I would venture to say would still be for several years to come (at least for the life of his current contract, which I believe runs through this year). The only other explanation that seems plausible would be the cost; Cameron made $7 million last year, while Nady was in the $400,000 range. A pretty hefty cost, but it's not as if the Mets are under strick budget woes (especially with Piazza leaving), and under today's market (which is hyperinflated from just three or four years ago), a team would find it extremely difficult to get any player of Cameron's caliber at $7 million a year.

Way behind on all this baseball news. Will update sometime in the upcoming weeks about the horrible choices for Cy Young awards, and also some thoughts on rookie of the year and MVP.

Mike Cameron Stats

Xavier Nady Stats


Post a Comment

<< Home