In the midst of the trade deadline looming like a dark shadow over all of baseball, the one name that has popped up in recent weeks has been the seemingly struggling Dan Haren. Opinions through the inter webs were mixed as to why he was on the block.
Some believed the Yankees would be favorites in acquiring the superstar, although it seemed unlikely as the Diamondbacks had a high asking price of 2 Starting Pitchers and 1 Relief Pitcher. To me at least, I thought the DBacks were making a sensible decision in keeping a bon a fide top 10 pitcher in baseball whose traditional statistics were unattractive.
Due to a season HR/9 of 1.47 (career 1.07) and a 4.60 ERA (3.38 xFIP), peripherals heralded Haren as a top pitcher this year with more than a few pinches of misfortune that caused gaudy traditional numbers. This would cause some around the internet to label him as a number 2 starter (which he obviously isn’t).
But as I am sitting on my couch watching some of my shows on DVR, my younger brother gets a text on his phone and yells downstairs that Dan Haren is an Angel. I thought to myself that Arizona had to gave gotten a rake that included at LEAST one of the Angels top prospects Mike Trout.
Well of course this wasn’t the case and Dan Haren ended up being severely undervalued on the market, and much to the Angels joy, they acquired one of the best pitchers in baseball for a jar of jellybeans topped off with Joe Saunders special sauce. It really just makes my head spin at the ignorance of the Arizona brass how they could let a guy like Haren who has such a team friendly contract just go to SoCal with nothing really good in return.
Whatever the reason… pitcher wins or ERA, they completely missed the boat on this one and will be total losers in this deal. Especially now that the Angels have him under team control until 2012 with an team option for 2013.