Monday, November 10, 2008

Rockies Trade Holliday to Oakland

A colleague told me a little while ago that the Colorado Rockies had traded outfielder Matt Holliday to the Oakland Athletics.

My initial reaction was that this was a paper trade for the Athletics and that they would flip him for several younger players. But according to Ken Rosenthal at Fox Sports, the Athletics are not going to do that and are going to try to contend in 2009. ('s-close-to-deal-for-Rockies-star-Holliday) The Athletics have had losing records for the past two seasons under manager Bob Geren.

Holliday was runner up for NL MVP honors in 2007 finishing second to Philadelphia Phillies shortstop Jimmy Rollins. He hit .340 with 36 homeruns and drove in 137 runs in the Rockies surprise run to the NL pennant. Holliday was named MVP of the 2007 NL Championship Series.

Holliday did spend time on the disabled list in 2008 with a pulled hamstring but did hit .321 with 25 homeruns with 88 RBIs. The Rockies did not repeat their magic of 2007 finishing with a 74-88 record.

There had been speculation that Holliday might go to the Philadelphia Phillies or St. Louis Cardinals but Oakland emerged as the surprise winner. No word yet on who the Rockies will get in exchange although reliever Huston Street, outfielder Carlos Gonzalez and pitching prospect Greg Smith have been mentioned.

Holliday becomes a free agent after the 2009 season. Even if Oakland GM Billy Beane decides to spend money this season it is not likely he could sign Holliday to a long term contract. Perhaps Oakland is going for broke this year in an AL West that has been dominated by the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim the past two seasons.

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