Last night in the comments section of David O’Brien’s blog, he posted a quote from Brewers GM Doug Melvin from an appearance on XM radio:
Melvin: “On Corey Hart and [Derek] Lowe, there was discussions in that. I’m pretty close to trying to hold those things in house but I think that everyone has known that, you know, if you look we need pitching and they (Atlanta) are asking for a young right handed outfielder so, you know, they do make some sense. So some of those discussions had taken place but I don’t see them coming to fruition.”
These talks have been rumored since the season ended, and in a way it does make sense. But all the Braves really want to do is unload Lowe’s salary, and don’t seem to expect much of anything in return (although I’m sure they would take whatever they can get).
I’m guessing the Brewers don’t want to pay Lowe as much as Atlanta would like them too, especially if they are dealing away their biggest trade chip. At the same time, Atlanta doesn’t appear to have a lot of interest in Hart and it’s said they don’t like his work ethic.
For the sake of argument, I only see two scenarios where a deal happens. Atlanta may not find a better match, forcing them to bite the bullet and eat some (or more than they would like) of Lowe’s contract while getting Hart in return. Or Milwaukee may not find a better option on the market and will take on all of Lowe’s contract while giving up a minor league player.
Neither of these situations seem realistic, since the Braves can always go to the less preferable option of trading Javier Vazquez if they don’t find the right return for Lowe. Of course a three-way deal is always possible too, but those are pretty rare in baseball so I’m not including that.
At the end of the day I see Lowe getting dealt for one or two minor league players, all for the purpose of salary relief, and Wren using that money to fill the several holes on the roster. Apparently Melvin doesn’t see the talks going anywhere, so hopefully this rumor can be put to rest.