The Ask BA mailbox was swamped with Johan Santana questions this week. He still has to pass a physical, so the deal isn't official or written up in Trade Central yet, but that should be a formality. The Twins will receive outfielder Carlos Gomez and righthanders Deolis Guerra, Kevin Mulvey and Philip Humber. I've already blogged my thoughts on the trade, and I'll get to your queries in a moment.
First, I'll update the 2008 draft order now that Type B free agent Pedro Feliz has moved from the Giants to the Phillies. Only four free agents who would yield compensation remain on the market.
1. Devil Rays
8. White Sox
17. Blue Jays
18. Mets (Tom Glavine, A, to Atl)
27. Twins (Torii Hunter, A, to LAA)
30. Red Sox
Supplemental First-Round Picks
31. Twins (Hunter)
32. Brewers (Franciso Cordero, A, to Cin)
33. Mets (Glavine)
34. Phillies (Aaron Rowand, A to SF)
35. Brewers (Scott Linebrink, A, to CWS)
36. Royals (David Riske, B, to KC)
37. Giants (Pedro Feliz, B, to Phi)
38. Cardinals (Troy Percival, B, to TB)
39. Braves (Ron Mahay, B, to KC)
40. Cubs (Jason Kendall, B, to Mil)
41. Padres (Mike Cameron, B, to Mil)
42. Yankees (Luis Vizcaino, B, to Col)
43. Red Sox (Eric Gagne, B, to Mil)
44. Padres (Doug Brocail, B, to Hou)
49. Phillies (Rowand to SF)
51. Brewers (Cordero to Cin)
52. Brewers (Linebrink to CWS)
69a. Braves (for failure to sign 2007 second-rounder Joshua Fields)
84a. Red Sox (for failure to sign 2007 second-rounder Hunter Morris)
Supplemental Third-Round Picks
107. Phillies (for failure to sign 2007 third-rounder Brandon Workman)
108. Astros (for failure to sign 2007 third-rounder Derek Dietrich)
109. Padres (for failure to sign 2007 third-rounder Tommy Toledo)
110. Angels (for failure to sign 2007 third-rounder Matt Harvey)
Remaining Possible Compensation Free Agents
Ari: Livan Hernandez (B).
Hou: RHP Trever Miller (B).
Oak: C Mike Piazza (B), OF Shannon Stewart (B).
Guerra (No. 2), Gomez (No. 3), Mulvey (No. 4) and Humber (No. 7) all made our original Mets Top 10, which would look much different if we were just coming out with it now. There also would be a lot of changes to the Twins Top 10. Minnesota fans apparently were so depressed about the trade that no one asked me to revise that list, but I'll give you two for the price of one.
John Manuel authored both Top 10s, so the new rankings below are his and the comments are mine. He couldn't help himself and tinkered with the New York list beyond simply promoting the next four players on our Mets Top 30 from the 2008 Prospect Handbook.
Mets Top 10
1. Fernando Martinez, of
So far ahead of the rest of the system, but still a long way from his ceiling.
2. Eddie Kunz, rhp
It's not a good sign when a reliever from the most recent draft is your No. 2 prospect.
3. Brant Rustich, rhp
It's worse when a reliever from the most recent draft is your No. 3 prospect as well.
4. Jon Niese, lhp
Young lefty with solid stuff will pitch in Double-A at age 21.
5. Nathan Vineyard, lhp
Sandwich pick last June has the potential for three average or better pitches.
6. Robert Parnell, rhp
Gets whiffs with his fastball and slider, but must refine his changeup to stay a starter.
7. Joe Smith, rhp
Sidearm reliever made his big league debut 10 months after getting drafted.
8. Scott Moviel, rhp
He's 6-foot-11 and already touches 94 mph, though his breaking ball needs work.
9. Danny Murphy, 3b
His third-base defense is an issue, but he has the second-best bat in the system.
10. Wilmer Flores, 3b/ss
Signed out of Venezuela for $750,000, he draws some Miguel Cabrera comps.
Twins Top 10
1. Deolis Guerra, rhp
Already has two plus pitches but also has a long ways to go.
2. Carlos Gomez, of
He has a Carlos Beltran ceiling, though he'll have to improve markedly at the plate.
3. Nick Blackburn, rhp
His strikeout rate may not be inspiring, but his stuff is.
4. Joe Benson, of
Like Gomez, a multitooled outfielder who's still figuring things out as a hitter.
5. Wilson Ramos, c
While he's fairly anonymous, his bat and catch-and-throw skills hold a lot of promise.
6. Tyler Robertson, lhp
He has solid stuff, though his stiff delivery doesn't lend itself to much projection.
7. Anthony Swarzak, rhp
Suspended for drugs last year, he still has some of the best stuff in the system.
8. Kevin Mulvey, rhp
Could get a look for the big league rotation, projects as a No. 3 or 4 starter.
9. Ben Revere, of
A surprise first-round pick last June, the speedster had a strong pro debut.
10. Jason Pridie, of
He's a high-energy player who could beat out Gomez for the center-field job this year.
In our organization rankings in the new Prospect Handbook, we had the two systems closer than Dan thought. Factor in the Twins' depth and the Mets' lack thereof, and we put New York at No. 17 and Minnesota at No. 18. With the exodus of four of their best prospects, the Mets now have Fernando Martinez (who has a ton of upside but is far from a sure thing) and not much else. When we update our rankings in our Minor League Preview issue in March, I suspect that New York will drop to No. 27, ahead of only the Tigers, Astros and White Sox.
As I said in my blog post, I was far from overwhelmed by the package of players the Twins received. They got two high-reward but also high-risk players in Guerra and Gomez, and back-of-the-rotation fodder in Mulvey and Humber. The Orioles (No. 16) will add some more talent if they pull off an Erik Bedard trade with the Mariners, and that would keep Baltimore ahead of Minnesota. The Diamondbacks (No. 15) sent five prospects to the Athletics to get Dan Haren, so I'd put the Orioles at No. 15 and the Twins at No. 16 in our updated rankings.
Let's expand this question to include the Miguel Cabrera/Dontrelle Willis deal and the proposed Erik Bedard trade. I'd rank the packages in this order:
1. OF Cameron Maybin, LHP Andrew Miller, RHP Dallas Trahern, RHP Eulogio de la Cruz, RHP Burke Badenhop and C Mike Rabelo to the Marlins for Cabrera and Willis. I believe Florida would have gotten more had it traded Cabrera and Willis in separate deals. And I probably have more doubts about Maybin and Miller than most prospect analysts. Still, the Marlins did get Maybin and Miller.
2. C Jarrod Saltalamacchia, SS Elvis Andrus, RHP Neftali Feliz, LHP Matt Harrison and LHP Beau Jones to the Rangers for Teixeira and Ron Mahay. That's two potential all-stars at up-the-middle positions, a guy who has hit 99 mph (Feliz) and a polished lefty who could be ready soon (Harrison). I almost put this deal at No. 1.
3. LHP Brett Anderson, OF Carlos Gonzalez, OF Aaron Cunningham, 1B Chris Carter, LHP Dana Eveland and LHP Greg Smith to the Athletics for Haren and Connor Robertson. Anderson and Gonzalez immediately became two of Oakland's best prospects, while Cunningham and Carter could develop into big league regulars.
4. OF Adam Jones, RHP Chris Tillman, LHP Tony Butler, LHP George Sherrill and RHP Kam Mickolio to the Orioles for Bedard. Jones will be a quality center fielder, Sherrill is a quality lefty reliever and the other three guys are intriguing arms from the 2006 draft.
5. RHP Deolis Guerra, OF Carlos Gomez, RHP Kevin Mulvey and RHP Philip Humber to the Twins for Santana. Santana's no-trade clause and contract demands restricted the market for him, and it showed in what Minnesota got in return.
6. LHP Gio Gonzalez, RHP Fautino de los Santos and OF Ryan Sweeney to the A's for Swisher. White Sox GM Kenny Williams just had to have Swisher, and he gave up his top two prospects to get him.
7. RHP Matt Albers, LHP Troy Patton, OF Luke Scott, 3B Mike Costanzo and RHP Dennis Sarfate to the Orioles for Tejada. Albers has a strong arm but is erratic, and Patton might not be more than a No. 4 starter. Yet it's still hard to see how the Astros a) really think they're going to contend this year, even with Tejada, and b) how they can keep trading young pitching.
The Rangers got the best value, considering they only would have had Teixeira for 1½ more seasons. The only better haul went to the Marlins, who gave up two all-stars. Haren is locked up through 2010, and the Bedard can't become a free agent until after the 2009 season.