On July 25th, 2001, the Royals traded Jermaine Dye to the Athletics as a part of a three team trade. In return, the Royals received SS Neifi Perez, and the Rockies received prospects Todd Belitz, Mario Encarnacion, and Jose Ortiz.
Dye had become yet another solid player that was developed by the Royals, and who would undoubtedly price himself out of Kansas City when he hit free agency. As a result, the Royals were listening to offers on the impending free agent.
The Athletics were 54-47 on July 25th when they acquired Dye, and were already playing for 2nd place and the Wild Card, as they were 18 games back of the Mariners. They had been running out all sorts of players in RF, but none of whom were playing particularly well.
The Rockies really seem to have been an afterthought, and only involved because the Royals appear to have wanted a Major League shortstop in return.
The Moving Pieces
In Oakland, Jermaine Dye was slotted in as the starting RF, with Johnny Damon and Terrence Long making up the rest of the outfield. They slotted him into the heart of the batting order.
In Kansas City, Neifi Perez was slotted in as the everyday SS.
In Colorado, Todd Belitz was put into the back of the bullpen, Mario Encarnacion was sent to the minors, and Jose Ortiz was slotted in as the starting 2B for the Major League team.
What Happened Next
All of the players who went to Kansas City and Colorado had a negligible effect on their teams fortunes, as none of them had anything particularly impressive. The Athletics, however, got exactly what they needed out of their new right fielder. In 61 games, Jermaine Dye hit .297/.366/.547 with 13 homeruns, 59 runs batted in, 41 runs scored and 2 stolen bases. He helped lead the team to a 102-60 record, which while being 14 games back of the division winning Mariners, was good enough to win the Wild Card. Unfortunately, the Athletics lost again to the Yankees in the first round, and were eliminated in a 3-2 series again.
The Net Moves
Athletics – First Level
- Jermaine Dye spent from 2001-2004 with the Athletics (394 games), and posted an amazing 2.0 WAR in his half season of 2001 with the A’s. Unfortunately, after that was a bit inconsistent, as he posted WAR of 0.9, -2.0, and 1.6 before leaving. By the end, he had accumulated a .252/.326/.444 line with 64 HR, 245 RBI and 230 runs scored. He left via free agency after the 2004 season, and no compensation draft picks were earned by the A’s.
Royals – First Level
- Neifi Perez spent the 2001-2002 seasons with the Royals, where he continued with the level of performance he had shown previously in his career. He hist .238/.264/.303 with 4 HR, 49 RBI, 11 SB and 83 runs during that time. After the 2002 season, he was claimed off of waivers by the San Francisco Giants.
Rockies – First Level
- Todd Belitz spent a portion of the remainder of the 2001 season with the Major League club, posting a 1-1 record with a 7.71 ERA in 9 1/3 innings pitched. It’s not clear exactly what happened after that, other than the fact that he didn’t pitch in the Majors again.
- Mario Encarnacion was only with the Rockies for the 2001 season, where he posted a .226/.284/.242 line with 3 RBI and 3 R in 20 games. He was claimed off of waivers after the season by the Chicago Cubs.
- Jose Ortiz spent 2001-2002 with the Rockies, and showed a slight amount of potential. In 118 games, he hit .253/.314/.407 with 14 HR, 47 RBI, 5 SB and 60 runs scored. At last glance, it appears that he was out of baseball from 2002-2005, before returning to the Mexican League and Independent ball for parts of 4 seasons.
When I listed this trade, it was mostly because I had remembered when I had heard about it, and was extremely excited at the time. The fact that the players that were involved were essentially useless during their tenures in their respective cities (with the exception of Dye) makes this one a slam dunk for the A’s. Sadly, by the end of his tenure in Oakland, I can remember being pretty unhappy with the overall performance of Jermaine Dye, and was almost happy to see him go. I also thought that when I started looking into this trade, that there would be more levels and players that were affected by this trade than just the original players involved. Guess not.