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Here’s an idea: Barry Zito for Alfonso Soriano

Jun 20, 2011, 12:00 PM EDT

zito throws Getty Images

No, this isnt’ a rumor or even a rumbling. It’s the wholesale invention — and a creative one — by Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News: the Giants and the Cubs trade Barry Zito for Alfonso Soriano. The rationale: the Cubs pitching stinks and the Giants offense needs help, and since both guys are contractual millstones, why not?

Well, apart from the fact that (a) Zito wouldn’t help the Cubs’ pitching so much; and (b) Soriano wouldn’t help the Giants’ offense so much that it would be worth it to either general manager to simultaneously admit that they made such a giant mistake in those deals and to take such a big chance on a high profile deal which would only serve to underscore just how terrible those deals were in the first place.

And, yes, we all know how bad these deals were already, but there’s a difference between the public knowing something and the public being able to say “see, he admitted it!”  There’s a politics to this kind of thing, and neither Brian Sabean nor Jim Hendry are likely to want to mess with it too much.

So yes, it’s a fun idea to kick around. But it’s the kind of thing that would never happen, like, ever.

  1. spudchukar - Jun 20, 2011 at 12:09 PM

    Watching Soriano flounder in capacious Pac Bell, er, AT&T Park would be a real treat. So would fly-ball twirler, Zito on an afternoon when the gale kicks up outward, in Wrigley. Rather sadistic of you Craig. Cool.

  2. Mr. Jason "El Bravo" Heyward - Jun 20, 2011 at 12:13 PM

    Crap deal or not, Sabean can at least say he has a ring, despite the fact Zito had little to do with getting it. Hendry can say he has a “dump” ballpark with a team that takes a collective dump at the park 81 times each season. In Sabean’s situation, I think he’d be a bit more open to admitting their mistake than Hendry and the Cubbies.

  3. sayheykidwschamp - Jun 20, 2011 at 12:26 PM

    The Giants already admitted it was a mistake when they left Zito off the post season roster last year. That was a huge message to the fans that rather than side with veteran gamers, they realized that Zito was no longer effective and the contract would not make the decision for them.

    • sayheykidwschamp - Jun 20, 2011 at 12:35 PM

      Oh yeah, Soriano…we have too many OF as is…that might create another problem. Will they take Rowand too? Ross, Burell, Torres, Schierholtz, Rowand, Soriano…so Ross in RF, Torres CF and Soriano LF? 6 or more OFs is going to be tough for Bochy to manage. We still have Ford on DL…so it could be 7 OFs.

      • Mr. Jason "El Bravo" Heyward - Jun 20, 2011 at 1:13 PM

        Can’t you just have all of these superfluous OFs combine into 3 super OFs kinda like those transformers that link up to one another to make a dino-bot or something?

  4. firerosenthalthebastard - Jun 20, 2011 at 12:57 PM

    bad trade for the cubs

  5. Marty - Jun 20, 2011 at 1:23 PM

    There’s a good chance J. Sanchez will be part of a deal for offense. They’ll need Zito if for nothing other than completing a 5 man rotation.

  6. seanmk - Jun 20, 2011 at 1:39 PM

    IF it happened it would not be the first time the cubs traded headaches(silva-bradley). so at least there is a past history of a team doing it

  7. thomas2727 - Jun 20, 2011 at 3:56 PM

    Not happening.

    The Cubs already have Garza, Dumpster, Little Z, Wells and Davis/Cashner.

    No need for Zito who is probably not likely to waive his no trade anyway.

    More likely scenario is Jonathan Sanchez being floated as trade bait. He has control issues but huge upside if he ever gets consistent command. The right pitching coach may be able to help his control issues.

    The Giants offense is so bad having Sanchez is a luxury they may not be able to afford if they want to stay in the playoff race all season.

    The Diamondbacks are right behind them and the Rockies are quietly only 3.5 behind.

    • seeingwhatsticks - Jun 20, 2011 at 4:30 PM

      You really think there’s a better pitching coach out there than Rags? If you’re trading for Sanchez you’re trading for the current Sanchez not whatever you think he could be because he will probably never be more than he is right now. Hopefully Sabean is realistic about where this club is without Posey and Sanchez and realizes that it’s not worth trading any real assets for a marginal offensive upgrade.

      Also, if the Cubs pitching rotation is so set and so solid why do they have statistically one of the worst rotations in major league baseball?

      • thomas2727 - Jun 20, 2011 at 4:59 PM

        Not putting down Rags. Like anything else sometimes a change of scenery is the tonic.

        That being said I would take Dave Duncan over Rags hands down when it comes to getting maximum return on pitchers. See Chris Carpenter and Ryan Franklin for examples.

        Sanchez has the ability to be one of the best pitchers in the league if he could figure things out. He has crazy stuff when he is right. Stuff that not many guys in the league have. That being said you are right about somebody wanting to buy low at this point.

        Zito has never played outside the Bay Area so waving the no trade is far from certain.

        I also agree about not trading away the farm for a rent a catcher like the Nats hoped.

        I think Baggerly was just grasping at straws with the Soriano/Zito talk. The Cubs are already begging to get rid of their $18 million per season headache in Zambrano. Taking Zito on is something I can’t imagine a Jim Hendry who is on a very hot seat is going to do.

        The Pujols injury could change things a bit. But my feeling is the Cubs are very close to calling a 2011 a lost season and looking forward. So dumping Soriano for a 6th starter is not going to happen.

        The main thing the Giants have on their side is the NL West is so weak that they may be able to sneak into the Division Title and take their chances with their starting pitching in the playoffs.

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