In case you missed it, yesterday the Toronto Blue Jays traded the recently acquired Mike Napoli to the Texas Rangers for right handed reliever Frank Francisco.

Transactions in sports can sometimes be confusing because in most cases the person making the deal knows something that you don’t, but usually, after a day or so, the trade, signing, promotion or demotion becomes a bit more understandable when you’ve had time to digest the potential options.

It’s been roughly twenty hours since Mike Napoli was traded for Frank Francisco, and despite well written explanations, I still can’t wrap my head around it.

Imagining that Napoli was extraneous to this team next season means two things: 1) You’re overestimating J.P. Arencibia who hasn’t even gotten a Major League hit off of a left handed pitcher, and 2)  You’re overrating Edwin Encarnacion, who has played all of nine innings at first base . . . in 2006, and still remains an inferior option against left handed pitching in comparison to Napoli.

Suggesting that Francisco fills some sort of a hole in the bullpen completely dismisses Jason Frasor, and forgets that the Blue Jays already have Shawn Camp, Octavio Dotel, Casey Janssen, Jon Rauch, Josh Roenicke and Carlos Villanueva.

If you think that the Francisco addition is merely for the draft picks he’ll bring when he signs elsewhere after this season, you’re forgetting that he and Frasor were the only two Type As in baseball to accept their teams offers of arbitration.  What’s going to change after this season?  Even not including Francisco’s 2009 stats in the Elias criteria, he still did enough in 2010 that a career average season in 2011 should be enough to ensure Type A again.  And even that assumes that there are no changes to the free agent ranking system in the next CBA.

Believing that Francisco is being brought in for his value as a trade asset in July ignores the fact that for every Matt Capps for Wilson Ramos trade that happens there are several available relievers who don’t get moved at all, or who get traded for far less promising prospects.

Shortly following the trade, there was some Twitter talk comparing the Blue Jays to the Tampa Bay Rays.  Try imagining the Jays adopting the Rays strategies, but with the wealthiest owner in baseball and the fourth largest market in the league.  Toronto would be just like the Rays, but able to keep Carl Crawford and Rafael Soriano.

On the surface, Francisco’s acquisition may look like something that the Tampa Bay Rays would do, but they’re the type of team that acquires a Type B in Chad Qualls at the deadline for next to nothing, not a potential Type A who has accepted arbitration in the past and could end up costing the team close to $5 million this season for a player that could’ve contributed at multiple positions.

Of course, there could be another shoe to drop, and I hope there is, but if not, I feel as though Toronto lost value on this trade, and it’s not clear to me, anyway, what motivated such a loss with such a quick turnaround on Napoli.

Quote Of The Day

New York Yankees owner Hank Steinbrenner:

We just have to [Getting Blanked]ing win.

And The Rest

There was a little bit of unreported cash being sent Anaheim’s way in the Vernon Wells trade, but it’s only $5 million.

The Angels still have an absurdly expensive outfield.

Remember the name Yasiel Balaguer.  The young Cuban pitcher has his first work out for a Major League club with the Florida Marlins.

If calling Jose Reyes the best player in the National League is only stretching the truth a little, calling Bob Klapisch the best writer in baseball is almost accurate.

Rocco Baldelli has been forced to retire.

It’s not easy to ignore a headline like this: Fear Strikes Out: Mental Illness Turns Star Catcher Into an Axe Murderer.

Brian Cashman clarifies his statement on moving Derek Jeter to the outfield.

The Houston Astros avoided arbitration and came to terms with Wandy Rodriguez on a $34 million, three-year extension.

Finally, this is an actual quote from an article on Bleacher Report:

The site has concentrated on getting itself established and then growing. Now, it’s time to raise the level of discourse.