Baltimore Orioles trade 3-time Cy Young winner Edgar Martin to the Cleveland Indians
The Orioles and Indians finalized a bonafide blockbuster today. Edgar Martin (3-2, 3.89ERA), world leader in wins and innings pitched gets a new home in Cleveland. He switches sides in the sure to be epic battle between Cleveland and Baltimore for the AL North title. He immediately improves a Cleveland rotation that had been sitting at 7th overall in ERA and should allow Cleveland to immediately close the 1.0 game gap and make them a favorite in the race.
That’s not to say that Baltimore got hoodwinked in this deal. As tough as it was to trade inside the division, the prospects that Baltimore received in the deal make a possible 2nd place finish this season worth it. 19-year old pitcher Lance Cornelius (2-1, 3.96ERA, 25.0IP in AA) has the talent to be a very good pitcher. He has 2 excellent pitches and 2 average pitches to go along with great control, solid splits, and good velocity. He also received 20-year old flamethrower Don Aoki (0-0, 2G, 1.2IP, 0.00ERA in AA). Aoki doesn’t really have the stamina you look for in a starter, but he has solid splits, throws hard, gets ground-balls, and has 4 above average to good pitches. A concern would be his control, but that’ll be mitigated somewhat by him pitching out of the bullpen. The final piece of the puzzle is 24-year old pitcher Bernard Reid (1-2, 7.85ERA, 18.1IP). Reid started out the season in the Indians’ rotation, but struggled mightily and finds himself at Baltimore’s AAA club. That being said, he has solid control, good splits, and above average pitches. He does well to get groundballs, but isn’t going to throw the ball past many hitters.
When asked about this trade, the Indians’ abesmem responded, “I just got tired of trying to beat the guy.” When we pressed further, he provided some more insight into his side of the deal.
Well, it was a tough trade to make because of the young pitching talent I had to give up. That said, guys like Martin don't come along too often and it gave me a real chance to stabilize my rotation right away. This has been a weak point for me since the league started. This team can hit and given our fast start, it gives us a shot to compete right away.
We also caught up with the Orioles’ hopkinsheel and asked for his thoughts on this trade.
I'm trying to thread the needle between getting too old and all of my stars demanding free agency and not getting much for them (Martin has a 47 loyalty rating, no chance he re-signs)...I also have several young stars that I can build around now without going backwards too much. One of the toughest things was trading Martin inside the division, but I didn't have a lot of options the other option I had was to play out the string and let Martin win a lot of games, then leave for FA and I probably wouldn't have wanted to pay him enough...he'll be 32 with an average makeup rating and will get a 5 season deal.
This was a true win-win deal…you have to balance Baltimore’s worries about getting value for Martin while keeping his farm system intact and able to contribute down the road. This is a trade that hurts Baltimore short-term (chances of winning the division) but really helps them down the road. Cleveland gets a guy who is relatively young and could anchor the rotation for a few years if he gets re-signed. He gets to make a run at a title and collect the inevitable draft picks to restock his system. This should be a fun divisional race to follow.