Choo basically spent the entire year in AAA, and had very good numbers, compiling an .893 OPS. He’s had good numbers (especially his OBP) at every stop along the way in the minors, and is only 24 years old. This is exactly the kind of guy a rebuilding team like the Mariners should be promoting and letting play every day.
Had the Mariners brough Choo up and committed to him, they could have used him in left field and as the DH, letting Raul Ibanez see more at bats at DH and first base (letting Sexson DH while Ibanez plays first). The Mariners had just brought in lefty-killer Eduardo Perez to be the right handed half of a DH platoon, so bringing up the lefty swinging Choo accomplishes that platoon nicely – and upgrades our outfield defense at the same time.
Of course, the Mariners didn’t do this.
Sometimes it seems like they don’t trust players out of their own farm system. Scott Podsednik is another good example.
No, instead of bringing Choo up and giving him the at bats he needed to succeed, they dealt him to Cleveland for Ben Broussard. Now, Broussard isn’t a horrible player, but he’s already 29 this is his 4th full season in the major leagues. Broussard is a “known commodity”. He’s going to give you an OPS around .800, with 15-20 home runs. While he’s not a bad player to have, at first base he’s pretty much the definition of a “replacement level” player.
So the Mariners traded a young player who was inexpensive with upside and some speed for a player already in his prime that earns $2.5M/year and has very little upside or speed. This is the very definition of a “bad deal” in my opinion.
Granted it is a small sample size, but since the deal here are the stats for each player with their new teams:
G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB K SB CS AVG OBP SLG OPS Choo 23 76 10 23 7 1 2 17 8 21 1 2 .303 .376 .500 .876 Broussard 24 68 7 14 2 0 5 11 1 16 0 0 .206 .222 .456 .678