2015 trade value: #20-#11 - Fangraphs
Fangraphs is in the midst of their annual trade value series. The goal is to rank MLB players by how much they would return in trade, so it isn't just purely based on talent; a team-friendly contract, youth, and years of control remaining are also big factors.
In years past, Troy Tulowitzki and Carlos Gonzalez would usually grace this list at some point. They both fell off this year because of both decline in performance (significant in CarGo's case, slight in Tulo's) and injury risk. But one Rockie jumped way, way up the list.
Dave Cameron has Nolan Arenado as the 14th most valuable asset in baseball right now. That puts him right in between aces Sonny Gray and Gerrit Cole. The combination of Nolan's skills (elite defense, 30 homer pop, excellent contact ability) with his pre-arbitration salary and four more years of team control adds up to one of the most valuable players in the game.
Rockies back from break, and facing long to-do list - Denver Post
Patrick Saunders briefly recaps the first half of the season, and ponders what's on the Rockies agenda in the second half. Will it feature a winning streak and a return to relevance? Doubtful. Will there be trades in the coming weeks? Possible. Will there be promotions of minor leaguers, particularly Jon Gray? Yes--at some point. Jeff Bridich is holding his cards close to his chest (as well he should). The franchise is in a rut, there's no doubt about that; will the first year GM make any bold moves in an effort to escape it?
But be wary of bold moves for the sake of bold moves...
Rany Jazayerli dropped this bomb on Grantland a couple days ago, and it has been the buzz of baseball circles ever since. If you haven't read it yet, I recommend you carve out some time for it.
Jazayerli chronicles how the Padres gutted their farm system and added significant payroll in order to field a team that is no better than it was last year. The Matt Kemp trade has been a disaster in terms of Kemp's performance and the loss of Yasmani Grandal, who is playing like an All Star in Los Angeles. Justin Upton has turned ice cold and Wil Myers is injured, and the talent they gave up to acquire them was significant. James Shields has been mediocre, at the mere cost of $100 million. The upshot? A 41-49 record and no realistic shot at the playoffs.
Preller will likely trade some of those pieces before the end of July, but he will receive pennies on the dollar. The Padres were bad last year, but with a good farm system and room to maneuver in the budget. Now they are bad, but with a terrible farm system and a bunch of big, unwieldy contracts.
So the next time you bemoan the Rockies' lack of decisive action on the trade or free agent front, remember how quickly such action can backfire. Turning around a struggling franchise isn't like flicking a switch. It's a process; and with the Rockies' strong farm system (there are four Rockies in Keith Law's top 50 prospects list, with an honorable mention) the Rockies might be on the upswing of that process.