Archrivals Swing Minor Trade

The Deal
The Dodgers and Giants are bitter rivals, but they reached detente long enough on Thursday to complete a minor trade. San Francisco sent Mark Sweeney to Los Angeles in exchange for a player to be named or cash considerations. The clubs hadn’t traded with each other since 1985, when the Dodgers gave up Candy Maldonado to get Alex Trevino from the Giants.

On Aug. 26, the Giants received high Class A second baseman Travis Denker to complete the trade.

The Big Leaguers
The 37-year-old Sweeney’s specialty is pinch-hitting. He ranks second all-time with 155 career pinch-hits, and he leads the majors this year in pinch-hits (16), pinch-doubles (six) and pinch-walks (10). Sweeney is batting .313 coming off the bench in 2007 and .247/.362/.404 overall with two homers and 10 RBIs in 89 at-bats over 75 games. He’s earning $950,000 in the final season of a two-year, $1.8 million contract. He’s a career .259/.353/.404 hitter with 42 homers and 242 RBIs in 1,089 games.
The Prospects
Denker, 22, signed as a 21st-round pick out of a California high school in 2003. He’s an offensive-minded second baseman who’s limited defensively and has cooled off at the plate since hitting .310 with 21 homers in 101 games at low Class A Columbus at the beginning of 2005. Denker has spent this season at high Class A Inland Empire in the hitter-friendly California League, where he has batted .294/.369/.450 with 10 homers and 57 RBIs in 111 games.
Quick Take
Sweeney won’t make a huge difference for the Dodgers, but he gives them a useful bat off the bench and didn’t cost them very much in trade. Likewise, Denker isn’t close to being a top prospect but he has a better chance to contribute than Sweeney does by the time the Giants return to contending status.

" Trade Central 2007