Join the “TLS” writers in a roundtable discussion every Monday on The Loop Sports! This Week we talk about the Bulls deal with the Thunder that sent Taj Gibson and Doug McDermott packing, and we step into Rick Hahn’s shoes for the day.
The Loop Sports Staff Roundtable for the week of February 27, 2017:
If you were Rick Hahn for the day, what would you be getting in return for Jose Quintana?
Patrick Flowers: The White Sox and Pirates have flirted for some time now, and I still like what they have to offer the best, but I think that Hahn could still get an adequate return without including Austin Meadows, who to this point has been the snag in the deal between the two sides.
Mitch Keller, Josh Bell, and Ke’Bryan Hayes would be a solid return for the White Sox, giving them another top pitching prospect to give them flexibility with their pitching prospects to flip somebody in return for more position players, or even move someone like Carson Fulmer into the bullpen in the near future, but more importantly it would give them the corner infielders of the future in Bell and Hayes.
Bell is the Pirates third ranked prospect, and the 27th ranked prospect in baseball according to MLB Pipeline, and while keeping Jose Abreu might be very valuable to the development of Yoan Moncada, it is still yet to be seen if that will be feasible given his value being too good for the White Sox to sit on in their current direction, Bell could slide into the everyday first-baseman role as soon as this summer if they do trade Abreu, if not, Bell could play right field as well as spend some time at DH.
Hayes is the Pirates 6th ranked prospect, and ranked 9th among third base prospects in baseball according to MLB Pipeline. Hayes hit .263 with six home runs and 37 RBIs in 2016 over the course of 252 at-bat’s in the Pirates minor league system in 2016. Hayes is rated as an above average defender with great contact ability, and the ability to hit line drives to all fields.
Matthew Smith: If I were Hahn, I’m asking for Francis Martes, Kyle Tucker and Forrest Whitely from the Houston Astros. This is somewhat similar to the package the Astros offered the Rays for Chris Archer with a few modifications.
Yes, this represents the top three prospects in the Astros system, but Quintana is well worth it. They can keep, David Paulino, Daz Cameron, Derek Fisher and the rest. These three and I’m out. I’d even throw in some coin to cover the expense.
Matt Grabianski: Two top prospects (but not elite), and two lower level prospects. Basically the same thing that Hahn got for Sale but with someone not as elite as Moncada. Quintana deserves a huge package in return, but not one including someone who can change the outcome of a season as heavily as Moncada can.
Thoughts on the Bulls deadline deal with the Oklahoma City Thunder last Thursday.
Patrick Flowers: I think that the trade was a total loss for the Bulls, without a doubt. The Bulls traded Taj Gibson, who will be a free-agent this summer, as well as 2014 first round draft pick in Doug McDermott, and a 2018 second round draft choice to the Thunder in return for three players that are of no value to the team now or in the future.
The “headliner” Cameron Payne is averaging five points per game over the first 78 games of his career, Morrow and Lauvergne are both averaging roughly five points per contest this season as well and will be free-agents this summer. The only logical thought behind this move was that the Bulls just wanted to clear space in the rotation to see what guys like Denzel Valentine, Bobby Portis, and Cristiano Felicio could do with regular roles in the Bulls lineup.
Overall, it really doesn’t matter, this team is a seventh or eighth seed in a weak Eastern Conference, and a definite first-round exit candidate at that rate. The Bulls are in trouble, and it goes far beyond this head-scratcher of a trade.
Matthew Smith: As I state on this week’s podcast, I think the deal with OKC is about as one-sided as they come, and that is not a good thing. There is no other way to look at it. The Bulls gave up their best perimeter shooter and a second-rounder for Cameron Payne?
And, no, we shouldn’t even consider the other players involved as each of their contracts are up at the end of the season. As a Bulls fan, this is insulting. Not only are they in worse shape for this season, but they are incrementally worse moving forward. Sure, Payne has a bit of talent, but he isn’t a star in the making. If he were, OKC would have held on to him. Just terrible.
Matt Grabianski: Did the Bulls put themselves in a position for more success in 2017? No. But did they set themselves up for future success by building for the future? Also no. I have no idea what’s going on.