Thursday, July 9, 2015

The Saga of the Jaime Garcia Trade

Jaime Garcia is one of the most interesting players in baseball. He somehow inspires very strong opinions, despite there not being much to base these strong opinions on. All of the Cardinals fans I know LOVE him to a point that is completely unreasonable. Like, yeah, they'd rather keep Wainwright than Garcia, but they'd have to think about it. He is this player who can flash something special, but has never done it for very long, and, oh yeah, he hasn't had a healthy season since 2011.

I am not a Cardinals fan. In fact, I believe, like most of the sane universe that Cardinals fans are the absolute worse fans in all of baseball (they are tied for last with the other 29 teams, because all fans are the same; they are all equally the worst), but Jaime still has a special place in my heart. Last year, I was able to take advantage of a Cardinals fan's irrational love for Garcia. I offered him Garcia for Pablo Sandoval since my 3B situation was a little shaky. He said he still needed to get a third baseman, so I used my knowledge of his Cardinals fandom, picked up David Freese, paired him with Garcia to get the Kung-Fu Panda. Freese struggled all year, and Garcia got hurt a couple weeks later. Meanwhile, Sandoval started crushing the ball right after I acquired him and helped me get a second place finish last year.

With those memories in my head, I kept track of Garcia's rehab progress and picked him up before his first start. He did not disappoint, as he had maybe his best stretch of pitching in his career to start out his season this year. After four starts, I decided it was time to sell, as I know Garcia, and he is a ticking time bomb ready to explode at any moment.

Since he was a top-10 pitcher since coming off the disabled list, I thought I should aim high. After numerous people told me to go fuck myself for my trade offers, I knew it was time to slightly lower my sights in a trade return. I talked to another Cardinals fan in the league about a straight swap of Garcia for Gio Gonzalez. He said he was interested, but he thought he was going to get a fourth round basketball pick for him, but if that fell through, he would make the trade with me.

I waited patiently, as I didn't think there was a chance he was going to get that sort of haul for Gio, and Garcia continued to dominate, so everything was looking good. Unfortunately, his team was hit by a string of injuries, and now he was looking for outfielders in any trade he made. I assured him that Garcia could play outfield at any moment, but he was unconvinced, and it was time to move on.

Right before his seventh start, I offered him up for Yasmani Grandal and a fifth round pick in a sport of his choosing. The guy accepted, but when I asked him which sport he wanted to trade the pick in, he said he didn't actually read the trade proposal and just thought it was a straight up swap of players. Now, I secretly love Yasmani Grandal, but I don't need him, so I was just hoping to get him as a throw in on the deal. But the guy had no interest in trading a pick, so all he did was waste my time on that trade offer since he doesn't know how to read.

Still, I was working the lines after his seventh start and was close to getting a fifth rounder from someone else, but they wanted an eighth rounder in return. Not ideal, but it was a solid bump up in the basketball draft, so it was worth it. The deal was good to go, but there was a slight groin issue from Garcia that my trade partner wanted to wait on. I had no worries, as he had only given up one run in his last three starts, so there were no signs of a decline.

Every morning, I waited to see the news that he would make his next start. Nothing. I started checking nights and mornings. Nothing. Finally, it was said that his next start would be delayed. Then he got totally skipped in the rotation.

The trade was off at this point, but I kept checking. He got pushed back yet again, but would not hit the disabled list with his groin injury. Then, finally, I saw this come across the news wire:

Jaime Garcia (shoulder) has been placed on the 15-day disabled list.

God damnit. A shoulder injury? There are only two possible explanations. Either they massaged his groin so hard he threw out his shoulder, or he kept saying his shoulder was sore, but the pervy Cardinals trainer just wanted to massage groins all day and convinced him that it would help. I'm leaning towards the latter, and I fully believe that a simple ice pack for his shoulder after his last start would have kept him healthy.

And by healthy, I mean healthy enough for me to trade him, as he probably had a maximum of three starts left in him before his body caved in like it does every year.

So I've got Jaime Garcia chilling on my disabled list for who knows how long. Anybody want to trade for him?

1 comment:

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