Blog Entry

Gio Gonzalez traded to Nats for four prospects

Posted on: December 22, 2011 4:34 pm
Edited on: December 22, 2011 10:15 pm
 


By Matt Snyder


The Washington Nationals have landed left-handed starting pitcher Gio Gonzalez, CBSSports.com insider Jon Heyman has confirmed. In return, the A's will receive a veritable killing that is usually reserved for an ace-type pitcher. Tommy Milone, Brad Peacock, Derek Norris and A.J. Cole are headed to Oakland's system in a trade that was first reported by ESPN.com. In fact, Peacock and Milone are probably going to be thrown into the A's starting rotation. UPDATE: CBSSports.com's Scott Miller reports that the Nationals will also get right-handed pitcher Robert Gilliam.

"It's 99 percent done," Gonzalez said (Associated Press). "It's pending a physical and I'm just waiting to hear from my agent."

On the Washington end, they are getting a 26-year-old lefty who isn't eligible to be a free agent until 2016. Gonzalez was 16-12 with a 3.12 ERA and 197 strikeouts in 202 innings last season for the A's. Of course, he also led the majors with 91 walks. Still, he's pretty tough to hit, holding opposing hitters to a .230 batting average and .336 slugging percentage last season.

With Gonzalez alongside Stephen Strasburg and Jordan Zimmermann, the Nationals have a formidable trio to lead their rotation for several years. Further, with John Lannan and Chien-Ming Wang -- and Ross Detwiler as insurance -- the Nats have a very strong rotation top to bottom. They are coming off their best NL East finish since the move to Washington -- third place -- as they'd previously finished in last place five times and fourth place once.

Gilliam, 24, appears to be a throw-in. He was 12-7 with a 5.04 ERA and 1.30 WHIP in High-A ball last season. He did strike out 8.5 batters per nine innings, though.

More Hot Stove
As for the A's, they are clearly rebuiling, just as we've known all winter. They already traded All-Star pitcher Trevor Cahill to the Diamondbacks and are still rumored to be close to trading closer Andrew Bailey.

This deal will go a long way toward setting up the future, and -- as I mentioned earlier -- Milone and Peacock probably step into the rotation with Brandon McCarthy and two others (Brett Anderson and Dallas Braden are still recovering from season-ending surgeries) immediately.

Milone is a 24-year-old left-hander. He was 12-6 with a 3.22 ERA, 1.03 WHIP and 155 strikeouts in 148 1/3 innings in Triple-A last season. He was then promoted to the big-league club and made five starts, with decent success. He had a 3.81 ERA and 1.25 WHIP in 26 innings with 15 strikeouts and four walks (and two of those were intentional).

Peacock was pretty dominant last season at three different levels. The 23-year-old right-hander started the season in Double-A, where he went 10-2 with a 2.01 ERA, 0.86 WHIP and 129 strikeouts in 98 2/3 innings. He then struck out a batter per inning in Triple-A for nine starts and was moved up to the Nationals. In 12 big-league innings, Peacock only gave up seven hits and one run (0.75 ERA).

Norris, 22, is a high-on-base, power-hitting catcher. Last season, he hit just .210 but had a .367 on-base percentage with 20 home runs in Double-A. He also stole 13 bases and threw out 40 percent of would-be base-stealers.

Cole, 19, is a bit away from the bigs but has high upside according to many scouting services. The 6-foot-4 right-handed pitcher went 4-7 with a 4.04 ERA for Class-A Hagerstown last year, but he also struck out 108 batters in 89 innings.

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Comments

Since: May 29, 2009
Posted on: December 22, 2011 6:52 pm
 

Gio Gonzalez traded to Nats for four prospects

MikeD...u are in denial because you know Peacock is one helluva of a pitcher.  You talk about few years ago but last year, he was phenomal because he has shown major improvement which means, he know what he needs to do to pitch well.  2009, 2010 is meaningless because he was awesome last year!  So stop looking for negative faults.   Go A's!
I'm in denial???  Of what???  The Nats fan stated Peacock was a mega success at every level of the minors.  I just pointed out that he had one good year in the 4 years he was in the minors.  That is all.  

I'm a Tigers fan -- The only part of this deal I have any interest in is the fact the Tigers missed out on trading for Gonzalez.  I never said Peacock will be a bust -- I just stated the facts.  You can say 2008-2010 are meaningless, but when you have had one good year and 3 bad years -- it hardly makes you a can't miss prospect.  I'll give him props for 2011 -- he pitched great in the minors, but it was one year.  If one year is all it takes to be a success -- Brady Anderson would have hit 50 homeruns every year in the MLB. 



Since: May 29, 2009
Posted on: December 22, 2011 6:47 pm
 

Gio Gonzalez traded to Nats for four prospects

I see this as a golden opportunity missed for the Detroit Tigers.  They would have boasted perhaps the best five man rotation in baseball, instead they will hold onto their 20 year old prospects who may or may not pan out.  I'm very disappointed in the Tigers this off season...Don't care for the Ryan Perry trade and don't understand the dissing of Joel Zumaya.  One season of 95 wins does not assure you repeated success...you must improve from year to year if you want to stay on top or get to the next level. 

I predict right now that they win less than 90 games next year with this current roster.  
BG,

I agree it is a missed opportunity, as I too would have loved to see Gonzalez in a Tigers uniform.  As far as the Perry trade -- I say good riddance to Ryan Perry.  He was worthless and didn't improve in the least bit in any year in Detroit.  He actually regressed, so picking up a player who is basically the same makeup of Perry in return, maybe a change of scenery for both will jump start their career.

Zumaya -- not sure how Detroit has "dissed" him.  The guy can't stay healthy, you can't keep signing the same guy to contract after contract and paying him to rehab after pitching for a month.  If Detroit can sign him to a minimum contract, I'm all for it.  No way I give him anything but the league minimum.

I'm lost though on how you feel the roster right now is going to be worse than last year though.  In case you forgot -- Detroit has a pitcher they brought in at the trade deadline that ended the year in the top 10 in ERA and WHIP in the MLB (Doug Fister).  He will be there for a full year now.  This same Tigers lineup finished 3rd in the MLB in BA and 4th in runs scored.  I think Detroit is going to cruise to the AL Central crown next year.

As far as Detroit wanting to "hold onto their 20 year old prospects" -- In actuality, it was only one prospect they refused to trade and that was Costellanos.  Pitching prospects are a dime a dozen.  Detroit was willing to part with Justin Turner AND Drew Smyly, word is they were also willing to add Boesch in the deal.  Oakland wanted Costellanos.  3B prospects are gold.  It is the one position in the MLB that is the toughest to fill with quality players.  No way Dombrowski was going to give up Costellanos, Turner and Smyly, though if it was me -- I probably would have pushed harder to get it done as Gonzalez is an elite pitcher. 



Since: May 5, 2009
Posted on: December 22, 2011 6:46 pm
 

Gio Gonzalez traded to Nats for four prospects

Nats are looking good in the offseason. Big question mark with Strasburg and staying healthy but I still am worried about their offense even if Harper comes up and plays well one player doesn't do it. Good move for Gio.


TDAISON
Since: Mar 9, 2008
Posted on: December 22, 2011 6:39 pm
This comment has been removed.

Post Deleted by Administrator




Since: May 29, 2009
Posted on: December 22, 2011 6:37 pm
 

Gio Gonzalez traded to Nats for four prospects

Funny ... Mike and I writing about the exact same comment at the same time. 
Great minds think alike.  Seeing as I was dying for the Tigers to pull the trigger on a Gio Gonzalez deal -- I had to read about what the Nats gave up for him.

After reading all the Nats fans saying how they gave up all these mega prospects and can't miss pitchers -- I had to go and look at what these guys have done, as I follow the progress of many minor leaguers to get a leg up in my fantasy leagues and I hadn't heard anything about the prospects the Nats gave up.

Peacock had one great minor league year, Millone's era in the minors the last two years looks good, but giving up over a hit an inning in the minors isn't a good recipe for success in the MLB,  AJ Cole is supposed to be the Nats top pitching prospect, but he is only 18, so you never know.  Lastly -- Derek Norris looks to have the tools as a defensive catcher and an impressive OBP, but his strikes out a ton and if he is hitting .210 in double A, it isn't getting much better once he gets to the MLB.

In the end -- it is a crapshoot with these prospects.  i'll take the proven commodity 99 times out of 100 and Gio Gonzalez is a legit top line starter and left handed to boot.  I'd be ecstatic if I was a Nats fan to add a pitcher with his ability to my rotation. 



Since: Mar 10, 2010
Posted on: December 22, 2011 6:31 pm
 

Gio Gonzalez traded to Nats for four prospects

when GIO is on he is nasty : he needs to work on his command 



Since: May 17, 2008
Posted on: December 22, 2011 6:29 pm
 

Gio Gonzalez traded to Nats for four prospects

I see this as a golden opportunity missed for the Detroit Tigers.  They would have boasted perhaps the best five man rotation in baseball, instead they will hold onto their 20 year old prospects who may or may not pan out.  I'm very disappointed in the Tigers this off season...Don't care for the Ryan Perry trade and don't understand the dissing of Joel Zumaya.  One season of 95 wins does not assure you repeated success...you must improve from year to year if you want to stay on top or get to the next level. 

I predict right now that they win less than 90 games next year with this current roster.  



Since: May 29, 2009
Posted on: December 22, 2011 6:28 pm
 

Gio Gonzalez traded to Nats for four prospects

The kicker on that deal, though, is that Halladay was a rent-a-player.  No guarantee the Tigers could resign him.  They couldn't risk trading two of their top prospects for nothing (if Halladay walked).  In the Nats case, they have Gio until 2016.  BIG difference.
I agree it was possible it was for a rent-a-player, but I just like to think they could have got a deal done with Halladay.  Imagine a 1-2 of Verlander and Halladay.  



Since: Feb 23, 2008
Posted on: December 22, 2011 6:27 pm
 

Gio Gonzalez traded to Nats for four prospects

Funny ... Mike and I writing about the exact same comment at the same time. 




Since: Feb 23, 2008
Posted on: December 22, 2011 6:25 pm
 

Gio Gonzalez traded to Nats for four prospects

Peacock is one of the best pitching prospects in all of baseball and has been a mega success everywhere he's played.

Check his stats before 2011.  They are less than impressive.  He spent four years in the lower minors with mediocre success at best before his "breakout" season last year.  Maybe he's a late bloomer; who knows.  Pretty risky to think he's a minor league stud based on his whole body of work in the minors.  He is FAR from one of the best pitching prospects in all of baseball.


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