Vazquez for Cabrera May Not Be a Bad Deal for Atlanta After All

Tony BettackContributor IDecember 22, 2009

NEW YORK - JUNE 13:  Javier Vazquez #33 of the New York Yankees winds up to pitch during the interleague game against the San Diego Padres on June 13, 2004 at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx, New York. The Yankees won 6-5 in the12th inning.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

For most Braves fans, this was not the deal that they were looking for. With a surplus at the pitching postition, Atlanta was poised to deal one of either Javier Vazquez or Derek Lowe.

With Derek Lowe's recent comments about being on the trading block, it left most Braves fans, including myself, with the thought he was surely the one to be traded. However, with three years and 45 million dollars due to Lowe, the Braves found that option rather difficult.

Braves General Manager Frank Wren found after the winter meetings that no team was willing to take the large contract of Lowe's. While still looking to trade one of his top pitchers, he decided on shopping Javy Vazquez.

Given that Vazquez has a no-trade clause to teams in the west, it limited Wren's options with trading him.

However, Wren did find a suitor in the New York Yankees.

The deal consisted of sending Vazquez to the Yankees, and in return Atlanta received major league outfielder Melky Cabrera and minor league pitchers Arodys Vizcaino and Mike Dunn.

Now, we all know Cabrera is not the power bat the Braves are hoping to acquire, but he is a young, solid major league talent. Melky doesn't have the high numbers, but he is a proven starter with a championship ring.

From the Yankee's viewpoint, the trade worked out wonderfully. They now have one of the best number four pitchers to go with arguably the best rotations in all of baseball. The pressure will not be on Vazquez, as he has CC Sabathia and A.J. Burnett leading the way. With the recent trade acquiring outfielder Curtis Granderson, Cabrera was no longer needed.

The Braves, on the other hand, made a move that most do not quite understand. It seems all websites reporting the trade have comments saying what a bad deal this was for the Braves. You have to look at the positives.

This deal frees up about nine million in Atlanta's budget to go out and get the "slugger" that we are all waiting for. In the deal Atlanta also receives one of the Yankee's top pitching prospects in Vizcaino and $500,000 in cash considerations.

For those of you doubting that the Braves are willing to make a move for a power bat, a name that has been thrown around by Dave O'Brien of the Atlanta Journal Constitution is the likes of Padres first baseman Adrian Gonzalez. Whether or not a deal can be reached remains to be seen, but more recently Frank Wren Appeared on 790 The Zone in which he believes his team is in the mix to acquire such a hitter.

Many view this as a negative trade for the Braves; however, with run-scoring ability of Cabrera and the nine million of the books, not to mention the pitching prospects gained, the Braves seemed poised to make a strong run at the NL East crown.