When the Twins acquired Orlando Cabrera, I was a bit disappointed. But, having time to think about it over the weekend, I have come to my senses a little bit. Cabrera is a huge upgrade offensively over either Punto or Casilla (roughly a 30 point wOBA increase) and although his UZR has been terrible this year, UZR is a pretty fickle defensive tool, meaning that it is prone to huge fluctuations. In all, he probably will be closer to his career numbers than his to date numbers.
Fangraphs notes that Cabrera replacing Harris’s offense will be worth about 3.5 runs, and Punto replacing Harris’s defense at second should be worth about 3 more runs. All told, this should be worth around half a win for the Twins, not an insignificant number when they are only three games back.
Let’s break out the Trade Machine, shall we? Oakland kicked in some cash for Cabrera, so I am putting his remaining salary at 1 million. (Edit: MLBTR notes that the Twins are picking up 1.25 million. This doesn’t change his value enough to cause me to redo the chart.) His value of 1.5 million is pretty low, depressed by the clause in his contract which stated that if he is a Type A free agent at the end of the year, his team cannot offer him arbitration. Last year his being a Type A free agent clearly depressed his market value, whereas this year it will not.
In exchange for Cabrera, the Twins gave up SS prospect Tyler Ladendorf. I aggressively ranked him in my top 10 prospects, noting that he will be able to stick at short and should develop some more power. But, given the fact that he is still a grade C prospect at this point, the Twins did just fine giving up Ladendorf to acquire Cabrera.
Orlando CabreraYearSal (M)WARVal (M)Net (M)Sal (M)2009$1.00.5$2.5$1.5$1.02010201120122013201420152016FA PicksTotal$1.00.5$2.5$1.5