With the MLB offseason comes bold and brash free agent speculation, aggressive playoff predictions, and — perhaps best of all — totally off-the-wall hypothetical trade proposals.
This kind of talk are usually reserved for fans, but on Wednesday, MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand threw out a possible plan to get outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury out of the Bronx– it involves packaging him with Tommy Kahnle and shipping them to the Philadelphia Phillies in exchange for first baseman Carlos Santana.
Before I dive into why this trade is sheer lunacy, I would like to say that while this swap is generally crazy, it makes sense for both teams to deal away the players included, particularly for the Phillies, who are shopping Santana to open up first base for Rhys Hoskins.
Now for the fun part.
This trade makes zero sense for either team, as both sides would end up with an aging player that would cause a logjam on their depth chart.
The Yanks already have two first basemen in Luke Voit and Greg Bird, and while neither has proven to be consistently effective over long stretches of time, Santana is not a step up. Acquiring him would prevent the team from pursuing a real upgrade at the position like Paul Goldschmidt or Bryce “Can Totally Play First Base” Harper. And that doesn’t even mention the fact that Santana is owned $41 million over the next two seasons.
As for the Phils, a team angling to enter win-now mode, adding a 36-year-old outfielder who’s perennially banged up and last hit double-digit home runs in 2014 is a dreadful idea. With talents such as Harper and A.J. Pollock available on the open market, the Philadelphia brass would be fools to crowd their depth chart with Ellsbury just for a chance to roll the dice with Tommy Kahnle and give Hoskins a proper run-out.
Both teams have better options to improve the positions they would be trading for in this deal, and there are likely far better deals out there for both Ellsbury and Santana. It’s fun to go wild with speculation, though.