Last night the Braves pulled off another key move to me, which is getting rid of a guy I was tired of hearing about for so many years. Christian Bethancourt, in the minds of many as a potential catcher of the future, but always in my mind as a guy who couldn't hit, was traded to the Padres for a pitcher named Casey Kelly and a very young catcher named Ricardo Rodriguez.
I honestly don't care that we got anything back, because I was more than prepared to release Bethancourt to greener pastures elsewhere. But the fact we got anything other than a bag of balls for this guy is pretty huge to me. But again, I'm not crazy enough to believe that the Padres gave us anything they actually believe will work for our crappy hitting catching prospect. I've said it before, but this is the redneck swap meet trade. Two rednecks show up, and the other one honestly believes he can repair the other guy's busted crap.
So who is Casey Kelly? He's a 26 year old righty with 40 innings in the majors and a 6.69 ERA after 8 starts. Are you excited yet? Do you have the warm feeling in the pit of your stomach? Exactly, of course you don't. This guy is the broken outboard motor we got in exchange for our fridge that hasn't run right in 2 years. And Kelly's never been really good at the minor league level either, with an ERA of around 4.50 at AA ball or better. His WHIP is over 1.35, which isn't great, and he gets raked with hits rather than giving up a bunch of walks. Simply put, the guy doesn't miss bats and will need a lot of help before he's truly MLB ready. Plus, he's not young. Can the Braves fix that? I doubt it, but I also doubt the Padres can fix Bethancourt.
Oh and don't worry about Ricardo Rodriguez for now. He's too young and too raw to even consider playing for years. He's all of 17 years old, and until he can drink you'll probably never see him if he even pans out at all.
Basically we're gonna get our team of guys out on a dock with a cooler full of Natty Ice, some Skynyrd on the radio, and we're gonna see if we can't fix that Kelly outboard motor.