Friday, April 30, 2010

Could the O's trade for a reliever soon?

In his latest Rumblings & Grumblings column, ESPN's Jayson Stark mentions that the Orioles may already be looking to trade for a reliever. And apparently one of the relievers they are looking at is the Blue Jays' Jason Frasor:

The trade deadline is three months away, so we don't usually stumble upon many sellers in April. But the Blue Jays already have the "SALE" sign posted in their bullpen window. And one team that we've heard is looking at them hard is Baltimore, which is believed to have interest in deposed closer Jason Frasor.

"They would move a whole bunch of their bullpen guys," one AL executive said of the Blue Jays. "Frasor, [Scott] Downs, [Jeremy] Accardo. And Casey Janssen might have as much value as any of them. But the problem is, they're all situational guys or setup guys. So what are they going to get back? A middling prospect at best? I just don't see where, even if they make a trade, it's going to make that big a difference to their club."

Well, that's interesting, but should the O's be looking to trade for Frasor? He had an outstanding 2009 season -- 57.2 IP, 2.50 ERA, 8.74 K/9, 2.50 K/9 -- but he's been struggling in April and has already been removed as Toronto's closer in favor of Kevin Gregg.

Also, according to PitchFx -- and again, it's still early in the season -- Frasor's fastball velocity is down, and he's also been relying on more changeups and cutters. He also turns 33 in August.

Acquiring Frasor would probably help the O's bullpen, but at this point, with the number of impressive young arms in Norfolk, it doesn't make much sense to start trading away prospects -- even average ones -- for an average, or even above average, reliever.

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