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What's Rasmus worth?

ESPN's Jayson Stark quotes the ever present un-named major league executive as predicting that the Cardinals would only get "60-70 cents on the dollar" for Colby Rasmus if they trade him over the off season.

Why? Because executives of potential trade partners know that the Birds "have to " trade Rasmus, ergo, the Cardinals are desperate.

First, unless the Redbirds plan to butcher Rasmus and sell the meat by the pound, what does 60 or 70 cents to the dollar mean? Second, the Cardinals don't have to do jack. They control Rasmus' rights for several years and, as of right now, the relationship between Rasmus and manager Tony La Russa is still functional.

Who knows, La Russa might decide to retire over the winter. And, even if he does come back, he's 66 years old. The bulk of Rasmus' career will happen long after La Russa hangs up his lineup card.

The bottom line is that Colby Rasmus is a guy who, at least on paper, has five tools and can hit for power from a position not traditionally associated with 30 homer a year RBI men. It's up to General Manager John Mozeliak to enhance Rasmus' trade value -- if he decides to trade him -- not let some un-named executive set it for him. Sometimes I wonder if there really even IS such a person...

Atlanta is desperately looking for centerfield help after Nate McLouth turned out to be a total bust. And Rasmus is a southern boy who was born in Georgia. That's what you call marketability.

I remember the last time the Cardinals had a power hitting lefty capable of playing centerfield who was born in Georgia. They traded him (JD Drew) to the Braves for Adam Wainwright, Ray King and Jason Marquis. If Kent Bottenfield and Adam Kennedy for Jim Edmonds wasn't the best deal Walt Jocketty every pulled off, it was trading Drew -- who at the time was in La Russa's doghouse just like Rasmus -- for two useful pitchers and a future ace.

It's time for Mozeliak to prove the student is now the master.