Thursday, December 15, 2005

Vazquez Traded to White Sox

Javier Vazquez was traded by the Arizona Diamondbacks to the Chicago White Sox in exchange for Orlando "el Duque" Hernandez, reliever Luis Vizcaino and minor league outfielder Chris Young.

Vazquez had requested a trade because he wanted to play somewhere that was easier to travel to for his family out of Puerto Rico. While a flight from Miami to Chicago is half as long as a flight from Miami to Phoenix - Chicago is not in the Eastern Time Zone where Vazquez asked to play.

I'm of two minds regarding Vazquez. He's got a big contract ($24 million over the next two years) and his ERA has been pretty poor these past two years (4.50 in 2004 and 4.40 in 2005). When the Red Sox played the Yankees in the 2004 playoffs - there was no pitcher a Red Sox fan would rather see on the mound than Vazquez (he had a 9.95 ERA for the series).

However, there is a reason Vazquez got that big contract. In 2003 Vazquez went 13-12 with a 3.24 ERA and 241 strikeouts for Montreal. There has been some talk that Vazquez's issues these past two seasons are mechanics related and something that can be fixed. If that is true then the White Sox just got themselves an ace.

I have to wonder if the Red Sox offered David Wells for Vazquez. Wells has a one year deal for similar money as el Duque however Wells has some bad history with Arizona (he renegged on an agreement to pitch there).

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