Tag Archives: Jamie Moyer

Trade Retrospective – Rafael Palmeiro to the Rangers


In an extremely large trade, the Rangers acquired 1B/OF Rafael Palmeiro, SP Jamie Moyer, and P Drew Hall on December 5, 1988 from the Chicago Cubs. The Cubs got back minor leaguers Luis Benitez and Pablo Delgado, pitchers Paul Kilgus, Mitch Williams, Steve Wilson and IF Curtis Wilkerson.

The Background

The Cubs had played Rafael Palmeiro in left field through the 1988 season, as they had perennial fan favorite Mark Grace slotted in at 1B. Realistically, Palmeiro would have been a defensive liability out in LF. They also needed to replace free agent closer Goose Gossage, who had signed with the Giants during the offseason.

The Rangers needed a replacement for free agent 1B Pete O’Brien, who had signed with the Indians shortly before the trade.

The Moving Pieces

In Chicago, the Cubs slotted reliever Mitch “Wild Thing” Williams in at the back end of the bullpen, and elsewhere on the roster included pitchers Paul Kilgus, Steve Wilson and IF Curt Wilkerson.

The Rangers gave Palmeiro their 1B job, and put Moyer and Hall into the starting rotation at points during the 1989 season.

What Happened Next

Immediately upon completion of the trade, Rafael Palmeiro trashed the deal (quote courtesy of this article written by Phil Rogers):

“These people don’t know what they’re doing,” Palmeiro said of general manager Frey and manager Don Zimmer. “These guys in the front office … it’s going straight down, it seems like.”

Palmeiro still insists there was no reason for the trade. He says it should have been a good thing, not a bad one, to have him and Grace in the same line-up.

“It would have worked out fine,” Palmeiro said. “I don’t think I would be any different as a player. Left field was no problem. I could have played left field.”

The Cubs ended up winning the National League East division in 1989, and faced off in the NLCS against the Western division champs, the San Francisco Giants. They ended up losing the series in 5 games, and have only been back to the NLCS one time since (2003). Williams led the back end of the bullpen, posting 36 saves and a 4-4 record with a 2.76 ERA in 81 2/3 innings pitched. Kilgus, Wilkerson and Wilson all played minor roles with the 1989 team, mostly in the bullpen (Kilgus, Wilson) and off the bench (Wilkerson).

The Rangers went on to go 83-79 in 1989, and finish 4th in the 7-team American League West division. Palmeiro had a solid season, hitting .275/.354/.374 with 8 HR and 64 RBI. Moyer went 4-9 in 15 starts during the season, and posted a poor 4.86 ERA. Hall posted a respectable 2-1 record and 3.70 ERA in 38 appearances with the team, all in relief.

The Net Moves

Rangers – First Level

  • Jamie Moyer went 6-15 with a 4.74 ERA in 178 1/3 innings pitched for the Rangers over 2 seasons. He struck out 102, walked 72, and was released by the team on 11/13/1990.
  • Drew Hall pitched mostly out of the bullpen, posting a 2-1 record with a 3.70 ERA over 58 1/3 innings pitched in 1989. On 4/2/1990, he was traded to Montreal for IF Jeff Huson
  • Rafael Palmeiro was with the team through the 1993 season, posting a .296 batting average with 107 HR and 431 RBI. He made 2 All-Star appearances in this stint with the Rangers, and filed for free agency on 10/25/1993

Cubs – First Level

  • Luis Benitez and Pablo Delgado both were in the Cubs’ system through the 1990 season, but never made any Major League appearances, either with the organization or at all for that matter.
  • Paul Kilgus spent the 1989 season with the Cubs, posting a 6-10 record with a 4.39 ERA in 145 2/3 innings pitched. He struck out only 61 batters to 49 walks, and was traded on 12/7/1989 to Toronto for Jose Nunez.
  • Curtis Wilkerson was with the Cubs for 2 seasons, playing in 154 games as a utility player. He posted a .231/.262/.283 line with 1 HR and 26 RBI. He filed for free agency on 10/26/1990, and brought no compensation in return.
  • Mitch Williams was with the Cubs through the 1990 season, posting a 5-12 record with a 3.28 ERA and 52 saves. He struck out 122 versus 102 walks in 148 innings pitched. He also was an All-Star in 1989 for the Cubs, before being traded on 4/7/1991 to the Phillies for Chuck McElroy and Bob Scanlan
  • Steve Wilson posted a 10-13 record, and had the longest tenure of anyone going to the Cubs as he made it through most of the 1991 season. His 4.56 ERA over 237 innings pitched was nothing to write home about, and he was traded to the Dodgers on 9/6/1991 for Jeff Hartsock.

Rangers – Second Level

  • Jeff Huson was with the Rangers from 1990-1993, playing in 410 games and posting a .235/.314/.304 line with 6 homeruns, 80 RBI, and 38 steals in his time there. He missed the entire 1994 season due to an injury, and was released by the Rangers on 11/30/1994.

Cubs – Second Level

  • Chuck McElroy spent the 1991-1993 seasons with the Cubs, pitching exclusively out of their bullpen. He went 12-11 with 206 K and 133 walks in 232 1/3 innings pitched. His 3.06 ERA was solid, but the 1.42 WHIP that went with it, not so much. He was traded after the 1993 season to Cincinnati for Mike Anderson, Darron Cox, and Larry Luebbers.
  • Bob Scanlan also spent the 91-93 seasons with the Cubs, posting a 14-19 record with a 3.75 ERA. In 273 2/3 innings, he struck out 130 and walked 98. He was traded on 12/19/93 to the Brewers for minor leaguers Mike Carter and Rafael Novoa.
  • Jose Nunez went 4-7 in 1990 with a 6.53 ERA in just 60 2/3 innings pitched. Nothing special here it appears, and he was gone after the 1990 season.

Cubs – Third Level

  • Mike Anderson, Darron Cox, and Larry Luebbers all spent 1994 with the organization, but none of them made any appearances with the Cubs. Luebbers was selected off of waivers by the Reds after the 1994 season, netting the Cubs no one. Anderson and Cox both spent the 1995 season in the minors, but also appear to have left the organization after the 1995 season, netting the Cubs no one either.
  • Mike Carter spent 1994-1996 in AA for the Cubs, never even really breaking with a hope of making the Cubs. Rafael Novoa spent the 1994 season with the Cubs AAA team in Iowa, but left the organization after the season. Neither player appear to have netted the organization anything.

Overall Reactions

You know, if you just look at the names involved in the trade, it looks a little bit bad for the Cubs. But when you come to realize that 1)Jamie Moyer was essentially worthless during his stint in Texas, and 2)nearly everyone that the Cubs got back pretty much fell off the face of the earth after the 1989 season, I have to give the Rangers this one. Palmeiro evolved into an All-Star, and eventually became a power hitter as well. Williams helped the team to the NL East division crown, but that was essentially the only impact that was realized by the Cubs from any of the players at all.

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Original Draft Series – Team # 17 – Chicago Cubs


For those that missed the guidelines I am using for this series of posts, you can find them here.

Team #17: Chicago Cubs

General Managers(since 1994)

Ed Lynch (1994-2000): 439-516
Andy MacPhail (2000-2002): 155-169
Jim Hendry (2003-Current): 587-545

Team Performance

Playoffs Division Finish
WC League Playoff App 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th or 6th
0 0 4 3 2 3 2 7

All information is drawn from Baseball Reference.

Position Name Acquired Years with Org.
Stats with Organization
Left?
C Geovany Soto 2001 – 11th Rd 9 2008 NL Rookie of the Year, 1 All Star Appearance
333 gm, .265/.358/.460, 45 HR, 162 RBI, SB, 131 R
Currently with Org.
1B Jake Fox 2003 – 3rd Rd 6 89 gm, .252/.305/.457, 11 HR, 45 RBI, 26 R Traded to OAK – 12/3/09
2B Ryan Theriot 2001 – 3rd Rd 9 583 gm, .287/.352/.361, 14 HR, 170 RBI, 98 SB, 319 R Currently with Org.
3B Casey McGehee 2003 – 10th Rd 5 9 gm, .167/.160/.208, 5 RBI, R Selected by MIL – 10/29/08
SS Starlin Castro Int’l FA – 2006 4 45 gm, .265/.322/.348, 2 HR, 16 RBI, SB, 16 R Currently with Org.
LF Tyler Colvin 2006 – 1st Rd (13) 4 73 gm, .283/.333/.553, 10 HR, 27 RBI, 24 R Currently with Org.
CF Corey Patterson 1998 – 1st Rd (3) 7 589 gm, .252/.293/.414, 70 HR, 231 RBI, 86 SB, 293 R Traded to BAL – 1/9/06
RF Kosuke Fukudome Int’l FA – 2007 3 1 All Star Appearance
361 gm, .260/.366/.405, 27 HR, 136 RBI, 22 SB, 182 R
Currently with Org.
SP Carlos Zambrano Int’l FA – 1997 13 108-74, 3.58 ERA, 1377 K, 723 BB, 1607 IP, 1.310 WHIP Currently with Org.
SP Ricky Nolasco 2001 – 4th Rd 4 No Major League Appearance with Org. Traded to FLA – 12/7/05
SP Jamie Moyer 1984 – 6th Rd 4 28-34, 4.42 ERA, 313 K, 194 BB, 490.1 IP, 1.475 WHIP Traded to TEX – 12/5/88
SP Jon Garland 1997 – 1st Rd (10) 1 No Major League Appearances with Org. Traded to CHW – 7/29/98
SP Kyle Lohse 1996 – 29th Rd 3 No Major League Appearances with Org. Traded to MIN – 5/21/99
RP Michael Wuertz 1997 – 11th Rd 11 13-7, 3.57 ERA, 270 K, 128 BB, 262.1 IP, 1.346 WHIP Traded to OAK – 2/2/09
RP Kyle Farnsworth 1994 – 47th Rd 11 22-37, 4.78 ERA, 467 K, 224 BB, 478.2 IP, 1.446 WHIP Traded to DET – 2/9/05
RP Will Ohman 1998 – 8th Rd 5 6-8, 4.33 ERA, 166 K, 84 BB, 160 IP, 1.419 WHIP Released – 10/30/03
RP Scott Downs 1997 – 3rd Rd 1 + 1 4-3, 5.17 ERA, 63 K, 37 BB, 94 IP, 1.638 WHIP Traded to MIN – 11/3/98
RP Kerry Wood 1995 – 1st Rd (4) 13 1998 Rookie of the Year, 2 All Star Appearances,
77-61, 3.65 ERA, 1407 K, 577 BB, 1219.1 IP, 1.250 WHIP
Free Agency – 10/31/08
CL Carlos Marmol Int’l FA – 1999 11 1 All Star Appearance,
16-17, 36 SV, 3.32 ERA, 425 K, 225 BB, 341.2 IP, 1.279 WHIP
Currently with Org.
BN Eric Hinske (OF) 1998 – 17th Rd 3 No Major League Appearances with Org. Traded to OAK – 3/28/01
BN Sam Fuld (OF) 2004 – 10th Rd 6 79 gm, .282/.403/.388, HR, 2 RBI, 2 SB, 20 R Currently with Org.
BN Micah Hoffpauir (1B) 2002 – 13th Rd 8 138 gm, .264/.323/.453, 12 HR, 43 RBI, 2 SB, 42 R Currently with Org.
BN Eric Patterson (2B) 2004 – 8th Rd 4 20 gm, .239/.308/.348, 1 HR, 7 RBI, 2 SB, 5 R Traded to OAK – 7/8/08
BN Brendan Harris (3B) 2001 – 5th Rd 3 3 gm, .222/.300/.333, 1 RBI Traded to MON – 7/31/04
BN Randy Wells (P) 2002 – 38th Rd 8 15-16, 3.72 ERA, 170 K, 70 BB, 254.1 IP, 1.337 WHIP Currently with Org.

June Amateur Draft

The Cubs have had some very solid success stories out of the draft, with Kerry Wood pitching well for the team for over 13 years. Unfortunately, a lot of the first round picks have been a mixed bag at best. You have 1998 1st rounder Corey Patterson, who never really came to be the player that the Cubs had thought he would. You have 1997 first rounder Jon Garland who was traded away to the crosstown White Sox for essentially nothing. And of course there’s the story of can’t-miss phenom Mark Prior, who was derailed after a couple of great seasons by injuries. In the last few years, you have players who have provided some value to the team, but many who have not done a whole lot for the organization as a whole. Some credit is due to the Cubs’ player development department, as there have been a lot of Major League regulars who have gone through the system at one point or another.

International Free Agency

The Cubs have done fairly well with the international markets. Carlos Zambrano (personality concerns aside) has probably been the best player they have signed out of a foreign country, and Carlos Marmol has really evolved into a top-flight reliever. Starlin Castro looks like he will have the potential to be a top tier shortstop with some more development as well. The biggest dollar signee that they have had out of the international markets is Kosuke Fukudome out of Japan. Fukudome has been a reasonably good outfielder to this point, but is probably not playing to the level that the Cubs had hoped when they gave him a 4 year, $32 million contract after the 2007 season.

Overall Grade

C+ – Overall the Cubs have done pretty well with developing players, and there were actually quite a few players (Sean Marshall, James Russell, among others) that were left off this roster but who are currently with the organization and have done reasonably well to this point in their careers. Unfortunately, they are also just as likely to have traded away useful players, and in many of these trades I don’t believe that they did all that well to get the returns and get what they needed to compete. Obviously, the product on the field has not quite been what they were looking for either, as the championship drought continues into its 102nd season.