The Tigers just got no-hit for the first time in 20 years. Their lineup features several light-hitting infielders and the key outfielder was just lost for 6-8 weeks. Slugger Adam Dunn -- and his .935 OPS, .395 wOBA -- is on the trade market. Put two and two together, as many Tigers fans have done, and you get four.
Unfortunately, I come up with three.
As in, a trade for Dunn really doesn't make the Tigers organization better in the long run and the likelihood of winning the division even with him is so low as to make little sense. That's why a trade for starting pitcher Dan Haren would have made good sense. Not only does he make your team better in 2010, he makes it better in 2011, and 2012 and possibly 2013. All the while at below-market prices.
What it comes down to: Dunn is a rental. For a team with the odds of winning a division so stacked against it even Las Vegas thinks it's unfair. Remind me: What, exactly, is the positive in giving up prospects at this point in time?
After this season, Dunn is a free agent in a market devoid of many big-name players. Those who think the Tigers will get some sort of "current team discount" are not thinking realistically. So there's little value to be gained. The baseball market is going to pay him what he's worth. There's no surplus value to be had that way. Sure, if he signs somewhere else you get two draft picks -- IF he is offered arbitration, and IF he declines it, both of which seem likely but are not givens -- but what's the point in trading two prospects now in order to have two prospects who will take several years to develop?
You know me. I am not a prospect hoarder. I'm more open to trades than most. I don't believe in untouchables. I just don't see why you'd give up assets who could be useful in putting together a team in 2011 in order to make the final two months of 2010 not hurt quite so much.
Buck up. Ride it out. By October we'll know a lot more about the team and who to count on in the future, and so will President/GM Dave Dombrowski.