Transactions: Ryan Garko Traded


Traded 1B/OF Ryan Garko to the San Francisco Giants for LHP Scott Barnes (A+)

Several years ago, I thought Mark Shapiro hung onto Ben Broussard a year or so too long. Broussard was a nice complementary bat, but by the time he was traded in 2006 he was making $2.5M with another raise to come after the season. But thanks to hitting in a platoon, Broussard hit .321/.361/.519 that season, and Seattle's Bill Bavasi bit, sending the Indians Shin-Soo Choo and Shawn Nottingham.

This time Shapiro traded Ryan Garko at just about his peak value. Garko, thanks to a recent hot streak, is hitting .285/.362/.464, is still cheap, although he'll start getting expensive in 2010 as arbitration kicks in. Garko's a below-average defender at first, and a massive liability on the bases, so his whole value is based on his bat. And the Indians have depth at first base, with Matt LaPorta ready for the majors. In the short term, though, the Indians are utilizing the roster spot to give Andy Marte some at-bats.

The Giants are probably the only team in baseball that views Garko as enough of an improvement over what they have to justify dealing for him. Their current first baseman, Travis Ishikawa, is a good defender, but only hitting .269/.318/.411. And that's not their only offensive weak spot (they're 15th in the NL in runs scored), so any offensive upgrade is a priority for them.

In return for Garko, the Indians get more much-needed young pitching. Scott Barnes is a 21-year-old left-handed pitcher with good command (career 2.6 BB/9IP) and good stuff (career 10.3 SO/9IP). He's also positioned to make the jump to AA fairly soon, which means he'll be ahead of the normal starter development schedule. From all I've read, he's going to be a starter in the majors.

I really like the timing of the move. Garko is more than three years removed from free agency, but will become less and less of a value as he gets into his arbitration years. And if the Indians feel that Matt LaPorta will be best at first base, Garko needed to go anyway.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Let's Go Tribe

You must be a member of Let's Go Tribe to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Let's Go Tribe. You should read them.

Join Let's Go Tribe

You must be a member of Let's Go Tribe to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Let's Go Tribe. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9351_tracker