Had a strong day in the bar Tuesday, so we figured we’d keep the doors open again today.
We’re open 24 hours at Connolly’s Tap Room, just not in a row. (Old joke, old barkeep).
I was thinking about today’s subject while watching the Houston Astros and New York Yankees play Tuesday afternoon.
Houston shortstop Carlos Correa is so amazingly fun to watch. As unfair as they may be, the comparisons to a young Alex Rodriguez aren’t far off. This kid can run, hit, hit with power and play great defense at shortstop.
He’s the real deal at age 21. After winning the American League Rookie of the Year last season, there is a significant contingent that believes Correa will win the AL MVP this season. I’m pretty sure that impressive awards combo was accomplished by another shortstop back in the early 1980s. Name escapes me, but I think that guy turned out to be pretty good.
(By the way, it’s no coincidence we have 2,131 taps behind the fake bar).
Correa was the first pick in a loaded 2012 draft that also included Byron Buxton at No. 2, Kevin Gausman at No. 4 and Addison Russell at No. 11 (Michael Wacha, Marcus Stroman, Corey Seager, Andrew Heaney and Lucas Giolito also were in that first round.)
So watching Correa had me wondering, would I trade Manny Machado straight up for him? I’d have to give it some thought, but, yes, I think I would.
Then I started thinking about who else I’d take straight up for the Orioles’ star third baseman, who won his second Gold Glove and placed fourth in AL MVP voting last year. He’s just 23 and still has major upside – though having surgeries to both knees since 2013 does give some people pause when projecting his bright future.
I’d trade Machado for Mike Trout and Bryce Harper, because I think they are a tick ahead of him right now and could sustain that lead. Nolan Arenado would be close, but I think I’d stick with the stud third baseman I knew.
I’m not sure my list gets any deeper than the above three. Clayton Kershaw? Kris Bryant? Paul Goldschmidt? Giancarlo Stanton? Mookie Betts? Xander Bogaerts? Manny’s old buddy Josh Donaldson?
I’d probably say no to all of those for various reasons. Let me stress the word probably.
To me it’s an interesting debate. And I want your take on it. Don’t compare contracts; just base it on talent, performance and upside. Right now, in April 2016, which players are so good, with such an upside, that you’d gamble that they’ll be better than Machado?
Tap-in question: Which player or players would you deal Manny Machado for straight up?