This isn't the sort of trade that's going to alter the balance of power or anything, but it does have some gawk-appeal:
The San Diego Padres acquired infielder Oscar Salazar from the Baltimore Orioles for right-handed pitcher Cla Meredith on Sunday.
The trade became more urgent for San Diego after utilityman Edgar Gonzalez was hit in the head with a pitch on Saturday night and remained hospitalized Sunday. San Diego is expected to place Gonzalez on the DL. The brother of All-Star first baseman Adrian Gonzalez, Edgar was still complaining of dizziness, ringing in his ears and a partial loss of hearing a day after the frightening beaning.
Not to take a thing away from the Edgar Gonzalez situation -- beanings are serious business -- but I'm not sure what was so "urgent" about this deal. The Padres aren't going anywhere this year, and unless they've made the organizational decision to go to a zone defense, they have a second baseman somewhere in the system who can serve as a utilityman in Gonzalez's absence.
What they or any other team don't have a lot of, however, are 26 year-old groundball machines, as The Hardball Times' Evan Brunell puts it. No, Meredith ain't the second coming of Dan Quisenberry or anything, but he does represent something of value in the game of baseball. The kind of which can and should bring more than a journeyman infielder like Oscar Salazar around the trade deadline.
Can anyone give me one good reason why Kevin Towers couldn't fill Gonzalez's hole with an organizational soldier for a week while seeing if he couldn't drum up a little bit more for a decent reliever than Oscar Salazar? Can't anyone point to a team a little more desperate to obtain him than the 40-50 Baltimore Orioles? Maybe this is just a little thing, but when you're a team like the Padres, the little things add up.