December 5, 2007 -A week ago today, in their first ever deal with Tampa Bay, the Twins acquired Delmon Young a 22 year old outfielder that bats and throws right, Brendan Harris a 27 year old who has played some 2B, SS, and 3B and bats and throws right handed and minor leaguer Jason Pridie a 24 year old outfielder that bats left and throws right.
Bill Smith’s first big trade is a nice deal with the Twins getting a potential superstar outfielder in Young who is just scratching the surface of his baseball abilities. Granted, Young has had some distractions in his very short career but the potential seems worth the risk. What I like best about Young is that he played in all 162 games this year and the fact that he drove in 93 runs with only 13 home runs. You have to figure his home run count will climb as he matures and he slides very nicely into the middle of the Twins line-up. Harris, I am not that excited about as he appears to me to be another Nick Punto coming off a career hitting year but with no where near the defensive skills that Punto has. I see Harris as a utility player at best. Jason Pridie was picked up by the Twins once before I believe as a Rule 5 pick and then returned to Tampa and here he once again surfaces as a Twin so the Twins brass must like something about this 24 year old with some speed but little power. Not to sure where he fits in either since he does not have the power to play a corner outfield position and he does not appear to be a center fielder either.
In return the Twins gave up stud pitching prospect Matt Garza, shortstop Jason Bartlett, and minor league relief pitcher Eduardo Morlan. Giving up Matt Garza must have been a difficult decision for Smith but we all know that you have to give up something to get something in return. To my way of thinking, Young has more up-side then Garza does. Bartlett will be missed at shortstop but he seemed to be a hot and cold player and this year seemed to have more injuries then most players his age should have. I liked Bartlett but he did not seem to have that fire that I think a good shortstop needs. Eduardo Morlan has potential to be a closer but has had no major league experience to-date.
Bottom line? I think this trade helps both teams and at first blush there does not appear to be a clear cut winner or a loser in this trade, time will tell.