One of the best pitching staffs in the National League just got better.
The Oakland A's sent All-Star Dan Haren and prospect Connor Robertson to the Arizona Diamondbacks on Friday for pitchers Brett Anderson, Dana Eveland and Greg Smith, infielder Chris Carter and outfielders Aaron Cunningham and Carlos Gonzalez.
Haren will join a talented pitching corps that already includes Cy Young Award winner Brandon Webb and starters Doug Davis and Livan Hernandez that helped carry the D-backs to the 2007 National League Championship Series. Arizona also hopes to get Randy Johnson back from injury next year.
Between Haren's acquisition and Johnson's return, Arizona could be the favorites in the NL West next year. I know the Rockies, Dodgers, and Padres will need a hell of an acquisition to compete with Haren's arrival.
"Wocka Wocka...who wants to hear a funny-ass joke?"
I know the prospects AZ sent over were no slouches, but I find it incredible they pulled that off without having to give up any one of Connor Jackson, Stephen Drew, Chris Young, Chris Snyder, Mark Reynolds, Chad Tracy, or Justin Upton. The fact they still have their ENTIRE young core along with Haren headed to his prime, Webb IN his prime, and all of the others is just downright scary. They're going to be an AMAZING team for a long time if they can keep these pieces together.
There goes my slim hope that the Cardinals could package something together to get him back...ignoring, of course, that save the untouchable Colby Rasmus they don't have anything to offer anyone. But still. I said at the time of the trade that Jocketty should follow the deal by quoting GOB Bluth, and I don't see a chance that I change my mind.
I don't really want to debate his hall of fame merits right now ... but if he gets in, I will wish then that it had happened this year. Wright Thompson at ESPN has a nice column (sports.espn.go.com) up about O'Neil that I would point anyone to.