Via CCH, I see that Rosenthal is reporting a Rolen for Glaus swap is just about to happen. Now, blogs are great for the short-term, immediate reaction type of writing, and I immediately say: I hate the deal. I will also note again that I’m a Rolen fan, so I’m sure my bias will be showing.
First off, let’s compare the lines from 2007:
Do you see a lot of difference there? Save home runs, I don’t. Remember that Rolen played all year with a bad shoulder that sapped his power. If the surgery was successful this off-season, it’s very possible he’ll put up better numbers than Glaus does in 2008 even if you don’t factor in the defense.
Glaus has never batted over .300. Heck, he’s only hit over .260 twice, and one of those was .262. I know batting average isn’t the be-all and end-all like it used to be, but it is still pretty useful. Now, if he’s healthy, Glaus likely will put up 35-40 HR, so that is more pop than Rolen has shown in the last few years, but again, with a healthy Rolen, it’s not as much of a gap as you might think.
Glaus is 31, Rolen 32, so we really aren’t getting younger in the deal. The Cardinals will likely have to pay some of Rolen’s salary, so we aren’t getting financial relief. Glaus is a FA after ’09, Rolen ’10, but it’s not like we have a hot 3B prospect coming up that we need to clear a spot for.
If the Cardinals were getting some salary relief or some prospects, like Adam Lind for example, then maybe this would be more palatable. But straight up? I really don’t like it. LaRussa said they wouldn’t trade Scott just to trade him, but that is really what this smacks of. It’s better than sending him for a A ball prospect, of course, but it’s not a trade that, in my opinion, measurably helps the club.
At least Rolen will be able to mesh with Toronto’s new shortstop. It’ll almost be like St. Louis North up there, with him, Eckstein and almost-Cardinal A.J. Burnett.