According to a report in the Chicago Sun-Times, the Chicago White Sox have decided to make a major push to try to trade for Cardinals center fielder Colby Rasmus.
From the Sun-Times:
According to a major-league scout, (White Sox GM Ken) Williams has targeted talented but headline-making Colby Rasmus of the St.Louis Cardinals and is willing to part with a package that includes outfielder Carlos Quentin.
''It was obvious that [the Cardinals] were paying extra attention to Quentin at the end of the season, so this might have been something that was already talked about,'' the scout said.
And did Williams have scouts watching Rasmus?
''Why would he?'' the scout said. ''Everyone knows what this kid is capable of. Plus, Ken seems to always know what he wants before the fact.''
There may be a trade in Rasmus' future. But I sure hope this isn't the one.
Quentin has a power bat, with 83 homers over the last three seasons. But he has a .251 career batting average, is a godawful defensive player and he's always had trouble staying healthy with 400 or more at bats only twice in his five-year career. Factor in that Rasmus will make about $500,000 in 2011 while Quentin made $3.2 million in 2010 and stands to get a raise through arbitration.
If the Cardinals were to make a trade centered on someone on the White Sox roster, I would greatly prefer it be Alexi Ramirez, a .283-hitting shortstop with power. But potential swaps rumored with Atlanta -- which would include young pitching -- seem much more appealing.
The Birds don't HAVE to trade Rasmus. So they need to be choosy if they make a swap. In a free agent market that lacks affordable outfield bats, it makes it much more difficult to imagine a deal because Rasmus' production will be harder than usual to replace.