The Dodgers announced a move that really befuddled me, while I was visiting on the SportsSpeakLA show in Hollywood. However I understood the reasoning behind it. They announced that they had traded starting pitcher Aaron Harang, to Colorado for veteran catcher Ramon Hernandez, and 4.25 million dollars in cash will go from the Dodgers to Colorado. Apparently the big show, was already desginated for assignment by Colorado, while the Dodgers receive soon to be 37 year old backstop Ramon Hernandez.
Harang was one of the three extra starting pitchers the Dodgers still had under contract coming into this season. The trio have been called the surplus, which consists of left handers Chris Capuano, Ted Lilly, and Harang.
The Big Show was under a back-loaded two year contract that was going to pay him seven million dollars. The Dodgers also had a two million dollar buy-out clause in his contract if his 2014 mutual option was not exercised.
Hernandez is due to make 3.2 million dollars this season on the final season of a two year contract he signed with Colorado back in 2011. Hernandez who turns 37 in May, is originally from Caracas Venezuela, and made his MLB debut back in 1999. The right handed hitting veteran catcher has played with five teams with the Dodgers being the sixth over the course of his 15 year MLB career. Hernandez was an all-star in 2003 while with Oakland. He has a career .264 batting average, has posted a .327 OBP, and has hit 166 home runs. He has two 20+ home runs seasons under his belt, and has played in over 15,00 career games.
Last season with Colorado, Hernandez battled injury and age, and only played in 52 games. He batted .217 with five home runs and 28 RBI, in 196 plate appearances.
It’s very rare to see the Dodgers making a trade with a division rival. But Colorado is trying to unload high priced veterans and go with a youth movement. Colorado recently replaced Hernandez behind the plate with Yorvit Torrealba.
The deal for the Dodgers was about getting rid of Harang, since they didn’t need him anymore, and he was just sitting in the bullpen not doing anything. Harang was going to be a spot starter/long man, along with Chris Capuano, but he had recently told the Dodgers that he wasn’t interested in becoming a reliever, or pitching out of the bullpen. Harang is a starter, and wants to remain one. Harang has yet to pitch at all this season.
Apparently the Dodgers will be sending over 4.25 million dollars to Colorado in order to offset, Harang’s contract. Although the Dodgers will save two million dollars since, they don’t have to use his Harang’s buy-out clause.
What sucks about this move, is that it almost assures that back-up catcher Tim Federowicz, will be shipped back to Albuquerque. We already have enough old busted veterans on the bench, and one more will not help. Fedex has not played yet this season, and was supposed to be the Dodger’s backup catcher this year. According to reports, Hernandez is due to arrive in Los Angeles on Sunday, and will be in uniform. Fedex is supposed to get a start on Sunday, and the Dodgers are probably going to keep both catchers on the roster until a roster spot is needed when Chad Billingsley is due to come off of the disabled list on Wednesday.
Reportedly, the Rockies have already designated Harang for assignment, and have made him available to other teams. Basically this was a deal made so both teams could dump a player they no longer need or want. The question remains though who will take over Harang’s super-soaker? Meanwhile lefties Chris Capuano, and ted Lilly remain on the roster, however, Lilly is on the DL. Both pitchers could become available via trade at any point later in the season
What do you think of the trade? Do you love it? Or hate it? Voice your opinion in the comments below.