Rany J of Rany on the Royals is breaking down the Greinke trade and he wrote this about recently traded Alcidbes Escobar:
"I think he’ll hit around .270 or so. If he hits .270/.320/.360, with good speed and above-average defense, he has a chance to be the best shortstop the Royals have had in a generation. That’s not damning with faint praise – that’s damning with no praise, given what a scar that position has been for pretty much the history of the franchise. But I think he can be the starting shortstop for a playoff-caliber team."
That description looked familiar . . . and lo and behold Ian Desmond's Age 24 season in 2010: 269/308/392 17 steals. -12 OBA +32 SLG. You can argue about the defense but we know he isn't a stiff out there.
I know I suffer from the I know better what I see syndrome and just assumed Desmond as a trade chip was as a throw in variety. Not so. Not so at all. Escobar was a key component of trade and his top side is close to what Desmond IS. Escobar is entering his age 24 season in 2011 BTW so its not like he has a big age advantage.
So I guess what I'm saying is: Don't short sell Desmond.
One unrelated Nats item: Picking up Matt Stairs and Rick Ankiel is to me a step in the right direction. Not in terms of THE PLAN but in terms of roster construction. Rizzo learned from last year that it is an absolute necessity in the National League to have bench players with power. They will get at-bats and in meaningful late-inning situations. Oh how many times did we see Willie Harris or Alberto Gonzalez trudge to the plate in key situations and the best they could do was prolong the game rather than strike a knockout blow. Not going to affect the win total too much I know but still a good sign.