Jurickson Profar for Oscar Taveras Trade Rumor
Another day has come and gone and yet fans of both the Texas Rangers and the St. Louis Cardinals are still talking about the possibility of trading Jurickson Profar for Oscar Taveras. This rumor first came to light via the internet a few days ago and has yet to be extinguished by either team. As Rangers fans collectively hold their breath, hoping that they do not decide to trade what many consider a “once in a generation” talent, one has to wonder what the contract extension of Elvis Andrus means for Profar. I think Dallas Morning News columnist Rick Gosselin said it the best concerning Profar, ““The fact that Profar is playing shortstop in Round Rock (AAA) bothers me. If he was going to be the second baseman of the future here next year playing alongside Andrus, I think he would be playing second base in Round Rock. The fact that he’s playing shortstop, I think they’re shopping him right now.”
Gosselin makes a very interesting point, if the Rangers did believe that Profar was going to be with the club long term, why wouldn’t they give him some time at second base? For the sake of an argument, let’s see what the Andrus for Taveras trade could mean for both franchises.
ScoutingBook has the following scouting reports to offer on both prospects:
“Profar has a ridiculously-advanced batting eye for a teenager. Profar crushed the minor leagues in 2012, starting in A-ball and ending up with a taste of life on the MLB roster with the Rangers before the end of the year. A real future superstar in the making, it’s hard to rate this kid too highly: he looks like nothing less than a switch-hitting Justin Upton, from the off-the-charts raw talent to the off-the-charts rawness. Still a teenager, he’s nonetheless ready to compete for a job now, and he should be scary-good in another year or two.”
“A big Dominican outfielder with an even bigger bat that he brings from the left side, the Cardinals’ Oscar Taveras was promoted to AA ball in 2012 and promptly spanked it to the tune of .321/.380/.572. Even scarier, those 23 homers and 37 doubles will add up to some serious power once he finishes filling out: he’s still only 20 years old. He will probably spend most of 2013 back in AA ball, but he’s the most exciting big bat of the year, so it’s likely that St Louis will at least give him a look-see in the big leagues, too.”
The trade makes some sense for the Rangers as they already have the shortstop of the future in place, locking up Elvis Andrus to a long extension. They may be in need of an outfielder after the 2013 season as both Nelson Cruz and David Murphy are expected to hit free agency. Taveras could be seen as the next in line prospect that would get a look at landing a starting job as early as next season, but would another bat in the lineup make sense for the success of the club? Remember, the Rangers failed to win the World Series with a powerful lineup filled with Josh Hamilton, Adrian Beltre, Michael Young, Ian Kinsler, and Nelson Cruz. Why did they lose? In the end, the opponents had better pitching. So instead of looking at trading for another bat such as Taveras, or even Giancarlo Stanton, the best option would be to go after a stud pitcher such as Tampa Bay Rays’ David Price. Price, alongside Yu Darvish in the rotation, could become one of baseball’s best starting combination.
This trade makes more sense for the Cardinals as they appear to be in the market for a major league ready shortstop with Rafael Furcal out for the season due to injury. This has forced Pete Kozma into the starting lineup. While Kozma, hasn’t been bad through the first 12 games, hitting .267 with 1 HR and 5 RBI, it doesn’t appear the Cardinals view him as the long term solution. Profar could help fill the void immediately, as some think Profar is big league ready but has Andrus blocking his path to the majors. Profar could come in and make an impact this season, adding a dynamic play-maker to the Cardinals roster for years to come.
While speculation circles around Profar and Taveras, this should make for an interesting story to follow as the pennant races start to heat up.