But I'd like to explore a possible baseball-card trade (that probably didn't happen, but it may have) between Side Bar / MMG and myself. This would have occurred circa 1988:
I'm holding a Kevin Elster Topps "Future Stars" card.
I really like Kevin. Maybe -- as his card says -- he'll be really, really good soon. But maybe not. He's young and unproven. Who knows?
Side Bar and MMG are offering:
1. A 1987 Topps Jerry Royster.
Royster's card is obviously crap. A throw-in. Maybe MMG and Side Bar think I have a special liking for him or something, I dunno. But they also offer...
2. A 1985 Topps Rusty Kuntz.
Rusty Kuntz -- I mean, can you go wrong with a name like that? Who wouldn't want that card? Even though he was a pretty crappy baseball player, simply having this card would probably get me mad props by showing it off in Mr. Chupak's 10th grade Modern European History class. (Not that I could foresee that or anything.)
So basically my decision boils down to this: Do I trade a card that I like, which could either end up very valuable or kind of in the middle (so I thought at the time) for two other cards -- one of which is obviously crap, while the other has at least something desirable?
Hmmm... I'm gonna say No. Why would I trade away a card that I might wind up loving (because Elster might turn out awesome) for a crappy card and a card that has, at best, a face-value appeal?
I'm sure Side Bar and MMG would have found a way to "persuade" me, but then again, I was only 10 back in 1988, so how much could I be held accountable for?
However, professional baseball General Managers should be smarter. I'm talking to you, Omar Minaya.
You just traded Lastings Milledge for Brian Schneider and Ryan Church.
Lastings Milledge: Though he was perhaps not quite what Mets fans had been led to believe, here's how the good folks at Y2K put it:
Young Lastings, all 22 years of him, hit .272 with 7 home runs in 184 at-bats last season. Across 550 at-bats, that's 21 home runs -- pretty good for a 22-year-old.Ryan Church: This guy is supposed to be our new everyday right-fielder? Last year, his best, he hit .272/.349/.464, which is pretty mediocre for a corner outfielder.
Brian Schneider? Well, he just flat-out sucks. You can look here if you don't believe me.
Basically, Omar Minaya traded away a young player with a big upside/high ceiling (depending on your cliche preference) for one mediocre player and one crappy player. Not to mention the fact that Milledge could've been much better used in a trade for a FUCKING PITCHER, clearly the Mets' most pressing need.
How is this a good deal?
Omar was dynamite three years ago, acquiring Pedro and Beltran -- awesome. The next year, he added Delgado and Lo Duca -- very good. Last year -- eh? And so far this off season -- Go Fuck Yourself.
I worry that Omar has lost it. I mean, I know it's not like he's gotta deal with the intricacies of an Elster for Royster/Kuntz trade, but Jesus, man. How 'bout you get us a goddamn pitcher?