Posted by: portersprospectreport | July 31, 2008

Trade Deadline: Ken Griffey Jr. Traded to the White Sox


Will a move to Chicago bring back that smile?

Will a move to Chicago bring back that smile?

The trading deadline has come and passed and Ken Griffey Jr. is back in the American League.  Cincinnati Reds sent the future 1st ballot HOF’er plus cash to the Chicago White Sox for AAA utility man Danny Richar and relief pitcher Nick Masset.  On the surface, this deal looks like a steal for the White Sox, but as you dig deeper, you will find that…well…OK, it was a steal.  The Reds, unwilling to spend 4.5 million to buy out Griffey’s final year and reeling from his 2nd half plummet and unkind gestures to former Red and broadcaster Jeff Brantley, took what they could get for Griffey and it wasn’t much. 

Market Analysis: Forgive me if I don’t give much analysis for Richar or Masset, who will be role players for the Reds.  Griffey’s market status may be a different matter.  Or will it be?  The White Sox are in the thick of the hunt for the AL Central division lead with the Twins and the Tigers close on their heels.  While this trade should rejuvenate Griffey, I don’t think that his numbers (.249 13 HR 49 RBI) are going to improve that much shifting to the AL.  Cinergy Field is a left-handed hitter’s paradise that was built with Jr. in mind.  This move doesn’t make the White Sox much better in my opinion, as Jr’s AB’s take away from Paul Konerko and Brian Anderson’s playing time.  The thought of having Jr. roam CF again is laughable as he has been repeatedly criticized for his diminished range in RF. 

Market-wise, Griffey’s autos should see a little more popularity as White Sox nation will be initially jazzed about this move.  If you have Griffey RC’s, memorabilia, or autographed cards, SELL, SELL, SELL.  Griffey’s bat will not see 700 HR and the White Sox will not be in the World Series.

Final Note: Griffey has a history of backing teams into a corner come trading time.  He did so with the Mariners, on the heels of a 55 HR  1999 season, when he refused trades to St. Louis and both of the New York teams.  As a result, the M’s received Mike Cameron and 3 marginal prospects from the only team that Griffey stated he would accept a trade to.  I find it ironic that that his antics after HR #607, may very well have taken his “beloved” Reds full circle and backed them into a corner at the most inopportune time.


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