Maybe it's not the best time to try to trade Prince Fielder

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Prince Fielder headshot.jpgOn Saturday I opined that if the Brewers keep stinking up the joint they should consider trading Prince Fielder.  Ken Rosenthal makes a good point however: it may not be the best time to trade the guy.

Specifically, Rosenthal notes that, of the current contenders, not too many of them need a first baseman. And for those who do, Adiran Gonzalez may prove to be a far more attractive option, simply because he makes far less than Fielder does this year and next ($4.75 million to $10.1 million, respectively).

The Rays, Yankees, Twins, Tigers, Phillies, Cardinals and Rockies are well-set at first base. The Braves could definitely use a Fielder/Gonzalez bat, but they were burned on the Teixeira trade a couple of years ago and aren’t likely to take on that kind of payroll in exchange for the kinds of prospects they’ll have to give up. The Mets could use the offense, but they just promoted their future first baseman and aren’t likely to mess with that (not should they).  The Rangers are not in any position to take on a big salary unless and until their sale is done, which could be tomorrow or could be never.

That leaves the Red Sox, really, who while they’re losing now, could conceivably jump back into things. But one team does not a market make, especially when there’s competition from the Padres. A team that I think, despite the nice record now, is still going to deal Gonzalez because it’s the smart play for the long term.

So, yeah, neat idea I guess, but really, who is going to trade for Prince Fielder this season?

UPDATE: Many of you correctly noted that Fielder would fit just nicely with the Giants. I have no idea how I whiffed on that.  Yes, the Giants could definitely use him.  And with their pitching they match up well with the Brewers as a trade candidate.  The only possible problem with this is that Fielder is still in his 20s, so Brian Sabean would probably send him to Fresno the minute the trade was done so he could get more seasoning.

Video: Undercover David Ortiz drives a Lyft in Boston

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David Ortiz did one of those “Undercover Lyft” spots for, well, Lyft, in which famous people disguise themselves while driving passengers around. Yes, they’re ads, but they’re still pretty funny. At least this one was.

Best parts: (1) the woman who says she has two David Ortiz shirts to which Undercover Ortiz responds, “actually, all my shirts are his shirts”; and (2) when Ortiz agrees with someone that baseball games are “so loooong.” Oh, and at one point he tells a woman who said she was going to the Red Sox game that night that he was too. After he unmasked himself, she explains his own joke to him. Which, ooohhkay.

In other news, people who take Lyfts in Boston either don’t watch much baseball, because Ortiz’s costume is NOT very concealing, or else they simply don’t look at their Lyft driver while in the car, at all.

Scouting in Venezuela: “Someone is going to get killed. It’s just a matter of time”

MIAMI - MARCH 14:  Venezuela fans cheer with a country flag while taking on the Netherlands during round 2 of the World Baseball Classic at Dolphin Stadium on March 14, 2009 in Miami, Florida.  (Photo by Doug Benc/Getty Images)
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Ben Badler of Baseball America has a story about how major league scouts who cover Venezuela are unhappy with the rules imposed upon them by the league. Rules, they say, which unreasonably prohibit them from scouting Venezuelan players in centralized, team-controlled locations or, alternatively, flying them to team facilities in the Dominican Republic or elsewhere.

The result: international scouts are forced to travel all over Venezuela to evaluate prospect. And, given how destabilized and dangerous Venezuela has become, they believe their safety is at risk:

“MLB’s rules that limit our ability to travel a Venezuelan guy to the Dominican Republic, that limit our ability to get them in a complex at different ages, all these rules are solely contributing to the risks that all of us are taking traveling from complex to complex, facility to facility in the streets,” said one international director. “Someone is going to get killed. It’s just a matter of time, and it’s on MLB when it happens, because they’re the ones who created these rules.”

As Badler notes, Major League Baseball itself has moved its annual national showcase out of the country due to safety concerns. It will not, however, relax scouting rules — which seem arbitrary on their surface in the first place — in order to make the job of international scouts safer.

It seems that Rob Manfred and the league owe their employees better than this. Or at the very least owe them an explanation why they don’t think they do.