Juan Uribe has already been pushed to third on the Dodgers third base depth chart, but that push nearly extended even further. The Dodgers and Braves were reportedly working on a trade of Juan Uribe for Alberto Callaspo as part of a larger deal, perhaps as many as six players, though the trade has fallen apart.
Within an hour the deal was said to have "lost traction" per Bowman, but Rosenthal doubled down with another report of the trade:
Source: #Dodgers getting major-league pitching in Uribe-Callaspo trade, not simply minor leaguers. Again, no major names.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) May 26, 2015
Callaspo signed with the Braves as a major league free agent this winter, and as such can't be traded without his consent until June 15. That consent was not given, as Rosenthal reported that Callaspo rejected the trade.
There are several factors in play to this would-be deal.
Callaspo was originally in Monday's starting lineup for the Braves but was a late scratch. After the game, Atlanta manager Fredi Gonzalez told reporters a trade was in the works, per Bowman:
"I got a phone call just before [batting practice] ended and there was a potential for trade out there and I think [the talks are] still going on. We didn't want him to get hurt. So, that was the reason he got taken out of the lineup."
Uribe is making $6.5 million this season; with 132 days remaining in the season there is approximately $4,688,524 remaining in 2015. Callaspo, making $3 million, has roughly $2,163,934 left. Both are free agents after this season.
Uribe earning $6.5M, Callaspo $3M. #Dodgers would save some money in trade, sources say. Not known if they are including any cash in deal.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) May 26, 2015
Other than needing to approve the trade, this deal wasn't really about Callaspo, who is hitting just .206/.293/.252. He isn't as good defensively as Uribe, but does at least have a recent history of playing multiple positions. Though adding someone who can play second and third base doesn't do much for the Dodgers, who already have Justin Turner and Alex Guerrero atop the third base depth chart, with infielder Hector Olivera looming.
Manager Don Mattingly on Monday addressed the recent lack of playing time for Uribe, who has just three starts and 13 plate appearances in the Dodgers' last 15 games.
"It's tough with Alex and Justin right now. We're trying to throw the best lineup out there," Mattingly said. "I do think if this continues on, there's going to be a point when Juan's going to be a valuable part. We don't know when, but right now those two guys have been swinging the bat very well and have been solid for us."
A valuable part of a trade, perhaps.
It would have been impossible to really gauge this deal until we know the other names involved.
Nothing has been reported involving these picks, but the Braves have two competitive balance draft picks, No. 41 and No. 75 overall, both of which can be traded. Both were acquired by Atlanta in separate deals in the offseason with San Diego and Arizona, respectively.
UPDATE: Per MLB rules, competitive balance picks cannot be traded more than once, so neither of those picks from Atlanta would have ever been on the table.
The last two Dodgers trades I can remember with teams that were playing at Dodger Stadium at the time were acquiring Jon Garland from the Diamondbacks on Aug. 31, 2009, and sending Octavio Dotel to the Rockies in September 2010.
For now, a deal is off. It is unsure if talks between the teams will resume.
But if Callaspo is on his way out with the Braves anyway (a possibility with Chris Johnson soon returning from the disabled list), him accepting or rejecting a trade is just him picking which team will designate him for assignment. If the Dodgers and Braves progressed enough in trade talks to actually have something for Collaspo to reject, it might not be too hard to resuscitate the deal.