While the tagline is true, Mark Kotsay also makes many more outs in the batter’s box, making his overall impact mostly negative.
Oakland GM Billy Beane really impressed me with his most recent deal, sending Mark Kotsay, a washed-up 32-year-old CF with very little offensive skill remaining, to the one team that made sense, netting a potential late inning reliever in the process.
The Atlanta Braves had no proven Major League center fielder on their roster prior to this trade, and were looking for a stop-gap solution for the upcoming season while their long-term replacement for Andruw Jones, Jordan Schaefer, prepares himself for the job in the minors. It’s possible Kotsay may not have anything more than a half a season or so left in the tank, but he’s the type of player the Braves were looking for: his contract is up at the end of this season, he’s a consumate pro who can help mentor Schaefer, and he can still go get it in center field when healthy. Also making this deal possible was the more than $5 million headed to Atlanta, causing the total cost for Kotsay’s services to be only $2 million, a reasonable rate.
Don’t feel too bad for Mr. Kotsay about being shipped out of town, he still has a smokin’ hot wife to come home to, whether it be in Oakland or Atlanta.
On the other side of this deal, Oakland did quite well for itself.
Joey Devine, the 24-year-old reliever heading to the Bay Area, has the potential to take up the mantle that the soon-to-be departed Huston Street currently holds as stopper in the ‘pen. Devine has shown flashes of dominance during his short stint as a professional, and especially in 2007: he posted a 78/19 K/BB ratio over the course of 57 innings in AA/AAA.
This move continues Billy Beane’s all out rebuilding of the A’s, and provides another great example of finding value where it’s difficult to see. The money Beane wired to Atlanta was already a sunk cost, but he somehow managed to turn that sunk cost into an asset.
Great move for Oakland.