On the heels of the news that the Cardinals have acquired outfielder Marcell Ozuna from the Miami Marlins (full return not yet announced), the Cardinals are apparently “edging closer” on another deal to oust one of the outfielders already in St. Louis:
— Susan Slusser (@susanslusser) December 13, 2017
According to Susan Slusser (who’s very good on A’s stuff), “The A’s and Cardinals continued discussions about Cardinals outfielder Stephen Piscotty on Wednesday, with multiple sources suggesting a trade might be concluded before the end of the winter meetings.” Obviously, that’s far from a “done deal,” but clearly something is brewing and it certainly makes some sense given the Cardinals recent move for Ozuna.
Interestingly, Slusser writes that the Cardinals are looking for prospects not already on the A’s 40-man roster, but Oakland is apparently pushing back on their top names. Apparently, one guy who has been involved in the discussions is 22-year-old shortstop Yairo Munoz – a top 10-15 system prospect according to MLB Pipeline who just reached Triple-A Last season.
Munoz wouldn’t be an overwhelming return for Piscotty, though there could easily be more to the deal, and Piscotty did have a very poor 2017 season after signing a six-year extension worth $33.75M. That said, we know the A’s will love Piscotty’s cost certainty, so if they even “like” his potential, you can understand why this move would make sense for them.
As for the Cardinals, this move doesn’t necessarily make them better in 2018, but it does make room for Ozuna and gets some portion (maybe even all) of the money due to Piscotty off their hands in exchange for a prospect or two. We’ll have to see what the return is if/when this goes down, but for now, it sure seems like this will be tied to moving out a piece to make room for Ozuna.
Stay tuned, because things are happening all over the place.