Mike Claiborne

Well, it’s done. The much talked about trading of Colby Rasmus has taken place. Going back to last season, if not earlier, you knew that this day would come as it just did not work out for the highly touted Rasmus in St. Louis. Highly touted? Yes, that is what we were told. A ‘five-tool player’ was his description by those who had seen him before he hit St. Louis. Since his arrival, we have seen brief flashes of it, but not enough to make your mouth water. An everyday player since his arrival, Rasmus never lived up to the billing. A solid player but not a difference maker night in, night out. Throw in his family’s concern about how he was being handled and it was like watching the count down in Time Square in New York on New Years Eve because you knew something was going to happen.

Enter the 2011 season. From the start of spring training after Albert went ‘no mas’ on contract talk was if Tony and Colby were cool. All good at the start as Rasmus got off to a great start. Then something happened on the way to the ball park. Rasmus went into an awful slump, his defense was average at best plus the rumors and internet talk went from warm to reactor meltdown. Oh brother, sister, uncle or any other family member if not a four letter word now is in play. Time for a trade I would say. That day happened today.

The early returns on the trade have not been favorable. Many think the Cardinals did not get enough. Really? What you expecting in return, Mays, Rivera and Gibson? Has anyone looked at Rasmus numbers lately? Oh sure Rasmus COULD be a heck of ball player if you go by what we were told when he got here. He wasn’t hence the reason he was traded so why would you expect a team to give you three or four top flight players and prospects for Rasmus at this point? While Rasmus is 24 and he has a lot of baseball in front of him, have we really seen enough to say that Rasmus will change? OK, so he and the manager did not see eye to eye, and in the end, LaRussa’s resume has shown young guys really do not go elsewhere and turn into Hall of Fame candidates.

While it is way too early to say who won on this trade, I would say if what the Cardinals got in return helps them win now, so be it. They get some experience and some short-term contracts, if not ones that will not hurt the budget. As for Rasmus, a fresh start on a good team may help, it may not as only time will tell along with more maturity and less meddling. As you look at both sides of this trade, give it time as much will be needed here to see who got the better part of the deal. The good deal would be that everyone is happy for a few seasons with or without the players they acquired today.

Mike Claiborne can be heard week nights on The Sports Hub from 9pm-12am on “America’s Sports Voice”


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