So, a few days ago, in the throes of am historically painful couple of weeks, I noted that the Dodgers were such long shots to win the division that they should be sellers rather than buyers at the deadline. The logic was that the market was so chock-full of buyers that it was driving up prices, and that sellers could get better at the expense of those who feel like they just need a little push to get over the hump.
If Marc Normandin's analysis at Beyond the Boxscore is correct, Ned may have found a way to get it done. Basically, Aybar is a younger version of Betamit, which means less is certain about him. That cuts both ways: maybe he'll be better, maybe worse. Seems like a wash. But Betamit is a little further along, and, more importantly, more likely to get in the lineup ahead of Izturis. Given this, the team is better right now than it was before the trade. In addition, it may be better in the long run. In that sense, I like it.
I don't like losing "or guys" in trades, but we traded some of our guys for Izturis once, and he feels like part of the family now. Up to this point, I've ignored Danys Baez. The reason? I don't think we need him at this point. He wasn't pitching in meaningful situations, so it didn't cost us much right now; he is a free agent, so it didn't cost us anything going forward. I hope he gets some good opportunities in Atlanta.
What makes me happy about this trade is what it says about Colletti's strategy. He didn't trade Aybar for a couple of months of Joe Randa or something. He didn't even go after Sean Casey (who could have pushed Nomar to third base). Instead, he got a guy who he thinks can help the team both today and in the long run, which isn't easy to do.
What makes me sad about this deal is seeing Aybar go. Showing an attitude that has been fairly common over the last couple years, he was stunned and saddened to be traded away. While not quite as emotionally powerful as the LoDuca and Roberts departures a couple of years ago, it shows that guys really do identify with the team and see it as someplace special. I think this is one of the elements that make Dodger fans so fond of a team that has struggled so much lately. Despite the trade, I don't think that Colletti or the McCourt's need to be reminded of this; they seem to get it.