December 10, 2009
The Winter Meetings were all-a-Twitter with activity, but not a whole lot of action. Of the deals that actually went down, here are the 10 most notable. Not included: the Chone Figgins(notes) signing, because the negotiations happened before everyone got to Indy.
1. Tigers, D-backs, Yankees make a three-way trade: right-handers Edwin Jackson(notes) and Ian Kennedy(notes) head to Arizona. Max Scherzer(notes), lefties Phil Coke(notes) and Daniel Schlereth(notes), along with top prospect Austin Jackson(notes) (right), go to Detroit. All-Star outfielder Curtis Granderson(notes) is bound for New York
The blockbuster allows Detroit to shave payroll now and could yield the most talent when we look back on the deal in, say, two years. Granderson is everything he's cracked up to be, and makes the Yankees a lot better today, though he's awful against lefty pitching. Everything needs to go just right for this to be a good trade for Arizona.
Rays' general manager Andrew Friedman turned depth at second base — Akinori Iwamura(notes) — into Chavez, who came from the Pirates. Friedman settles his team's closer issue with Soriano, who was one of the best in the majors last season. Atlanta gets something for Soriano, a player they weren't expecting back but surprised them by accepting arbitration.
He has a certain amount of injury risk, but Penny should be at his peak with Dave Duncan at the coaching controls. For $7.5 million plus incentives, he also provides insurance if Joel Pineiro(notes) bolts.
The Cubs let him get away without getting a sandwich pick. Immensely talented, but he's brittle as a peanut. Harden's career highs in starts (31) and innings (189 2/3) came in 2004.
The Rangers essentially pay the Orioles $3 million to take Millwood (who will earn $12 million this season) off their hands and clear space for Harden's salary ($6.5 million plus incentives). It's the kind of trade Charlie Finley would have loved.
Unsexy, but a key move for the AL Central champs. Pavano probably could afford to avoid the free-agent market because of the megadeal he signed with the Yankees several years ago. Also means the end of Boof Bonser(notes) in the Twin Cities, but he's now with the Red Sox.
The 'Stros are putting a lot of resources into relief pitchers with checkered pasts. Lindstrom has a great arm, when healthy. Lyon has a good track record as a set-up man, not so much as a closer. And they're paying $15 million over three seasons for this?
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Best of the rest:
• Andy Pettitte signs with Yankees: Like he was going anywhere.