A couple trades

By Jason Wojciechowski on July 28, 2003 at 7:46 PM

The Red Sox picked up Scott Williamson for pennies. Also, the Mariners traded for Rey Sanchez, sending Kenny Kelly to the Mets.

The Red Sox deal is far more dangerous to the A's chances of making the playoffs. I like the Mariners picking up Sanchez, though. By RARP, he's the worst hitting shortstop in the majors, at -10.7 in only 182 PA's. His .155 EqA is the worst of any shorstop with more than five trips to the plate. Any time he's playing and Jeff Cirillo isn't (even as bad as Cirillo has been this year) is a positive for Oakland. Any time he's playing and Carlos Guillen isn't is a big positive for Oakland. And if he gets any time over Bret Boone, my Uncle Kaurin might well go on a shooting spree at Safeco.

No, they didn't really give up anything of value for Sanchez (Kelly just passed through waivers recently), but even if the only person he takes time from is Willie Bloomquist, the Mariners lose. In short, if Rey Sanchez picks up a bat for Seattle, the Mariners are making a bad move.

Scott Williamson, on the other hand, is a nice addition to the Red Sox bullpen.
He's cheap (though he's arbitration eligible and only on a one-year deal), he's pretty young (27), and he's pretty good (7.4 ARP in 42 innings, comparable to Chad Bradford, for instance). Williamson strikes out well over a batter an inning, though his K-BB is only about 2-1, and he's giving up a home run every seven innings or so.

This doesn't help the Sox as much as Byung-Hyun Kim does, of course, but it doesn't cost as much, either. Nor was it intended to have the kind of impact the earlier trade did. In any case, though, I'm going to bet that the A's either win the West or sit out the playoffs this year. I don't know that they'll catch the Red Sox or Yankees, especially with those two teams' weak schedules down the stretch (Baltimore, Tampa, a probably Kelvim Escobar-less Toronto team that might even be playing some of their hotshot young guys by that point) compared to the A's schedule.