Matt Holliday has been the most valuable player in the National League since he landed in St. Louis, we know this. However, up until the last couple of days, the pieces the Colorado Rockies stole from the Oakland Athletics had yet to show if the trade that was made in the off-season was merely a wash for both sides.
While this should not be the case because Huston Street, who came over in that trade, has been one of the best – if not the best – closers in baseball this season (30 for 31 in save opportunities with a 3-1 record and a 3.12 ERA). It is because now everyone is starting to notice just how good Carlos Gonzalez is.
Over the past week or so, Colorado has surged to the top spot in the NL Wild Card standings, and Gonzalez has been the biggest part of their run. During the month of August, Gonzalez is hitting .400 with 4 home runs and 10 RBIs, which has raised his season batting average by 60 points to .282. His production thus far has given the Rockies $3.3 million worth of production when they are getting Gonzalez for much less.
With Carlos swinging a hot bat, the only negative for the Rockies is what to do with plethora of outfielders.
You have to figure Gonzalez will continue to play as he seems to be coming into is own as a major league hitter and Brad Hawpe‘s .300 average, 17 jacks and 72 RBIs is too much to take out of the line-up. That leaves Seth Smith, Ryan Spilborghs and the rookie Dexter Fowler. If we were just trying to fill out an even line-up Fowler would be the guy. Having a leadoff man that can steal bases is always a good think to have.
We know that the Athletics got Brett Wallace, who is hitting .293 with 10 homers and 31 RBIs in 85 games in the A’s farm system, but I not sure if he is the kind of player that will bring people to the ball park like Holliday does and like we think Carlos Gonzalez will do. We also understand that the A’s had to deal Holliday and that what the Cardinals offer may have been the best deal on the table, but there must have been someway to tell that Holliday would be effected by coming to Oakland.
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