Past Tomfoolery May Affect Halladay Deal
Yesterday, Toronto Blue Jays General Manager J.P. Ricciardi was a guest on ESPN's "Rome Is Burning." On the show, host Jim Rome peppered Ricciardi with questions about the status of a potential Roy Halladay trade.
When asked about what it would take for a team to land the Toronto ace, Ricciardi admitted that it would take something similar to the package the Orioles received two offseasons ago for starter Erik Bedard. Ricciardi accurately pointed out that Halladay is a better pitcher than Bedard but, while this is true, the line of reasoning does not make complete sense.
The Orioles dealt Bedard to the Seattle Mariners before the 2008 season and received in return five players. Through that haul, Baltimore picked up an all-star outfielder (Adam Jones), an all-star closer (George Sherrill), a young reliever (Kam Mickolio) and a hot, young starting pitcher (Chris Tillman).
This trade was viewed as foolhardy at the time and pretty much idiotic now as the orchestrator of the move on Seattle's end - General Manager Bill Bavasi - got canned before last year's all-star break. Now Ricciardi wants to be on the winning end of such a deal.
However, this seems unlikely as the Bedard trade never should have been made, which makes Ricciardi's theoretical trade demands fairly unrealistic. Yes, Halladay is better than Bedard but that doesn't mean a dumb deal should serve as a baseline for future negotiations.
Ironically, it is this same line of reasoning that has backed general managers into corners during free agency for years. A free agent will seek a huge contract comparing themselves to another player of equal or lesser value then demand a contract of equal or greater value. Again, because one team was crazy enough to acquiesce to the demands, dominoes are set in motion. The difference this time is that it's a GM looking to use such specious reasoning.
Add to this the fact that the Blue Jays don't have to trade Halladay (he has one more year on his contract) and the team can afford to charge such a large ransom though they might not get what they're seeking before the team's self-imposed July 28 deadline.
Perhaps I'm in the minority here, what do you guys think? Should Ricciardi expect such an impressive bounty for Halladay?
July 23, 2009; 12:04 PM ET
Categories: Blue Jays , Mariners , Orioles | Tags: Baltimore Orioles, Roy Halladay, Seattle Mariners, j.p. ricciardi, toronto blue jays, trade
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