This is the point in the season when everyone starts starving for some baseball news. Sure, we can look forward to Edinson Volquez finishing fourth in the NL Cy Young (and the BBWAA giving him 9 votes for AL Cy Young too, eligibility be damned!), but right now we're gonna have to take baseball news whether it relates to the Reds or not.
Following in the wake of the Holliday trade, NL East rivals the Washington Nationals and the Florida Marlins made a trade. The Fish sent starting pitcher Scott Olsen and left fielder Josh Willingham to the Nats for second baseman Emilio Bonifacio, pitcher PJ Dean, and shortstop Jake Smolinski.
The trade is a little baffling to me. Scott Olsen is a pretty decent haul for the Nats, but honestly, I thought his record was a lot better. He was 8-11 last year, and is 31-37 career. His k/bb ratio last year 113/69. He's no better than league average. Of course, considering the Nats only had two starters last year that were anywhere near or above league average, it just goes to show that you've gotta start somewhere. I would assume that Willingham will be coming off the bench, because Elijah Dukes plays left field, and you don't wanna be stealing his position, dawg. I ain't even bullshittin'. But since the Nats can't seem to go an entire season without every single position player getting hurt, it's good to have depth.
The Marlins are, shockingly enough, cutting costs. Yes, their payroll was only $21M last year, but that could stand to see some trimming. They'll save $800,000. Bonifacio is pretty good with the glove, but Dan Uggla has a bat that you don't take out of the lineup. Smolinski looks like he might have a decent bat in the future, but I think the real target might be PJ Dean. He went 4-1 with a 1.57 ERA in the GCL, and according to Google, is a mixed martial artist.
So is there any Reds connection at all? Well if the Marlins are serious about scaling back the payroll and getting younger (and it looks like they might be, since they traded first baseman Mike Jacobs to the Royals), Charlie Scrabbles's idea of making a run at Cody Ross just got more feasible. What do you think?