The Oakland A’s made a concerted effort this offseason to shore up an offense that was one of the worst in all of baseball in 2008. Highlighted by the trade for Colorado Rockies All-Star OF Matt Holliday, Oakland also made waves with free agent signings of veterans Jason Giambi, Orlando Cabrera, and Nomar Garciaparra. The pitching staff, however, has been largely unchanged from last season with Dana Eveland, Dallas Braden, Gio Gonzalez, and Sean Gallagher all battling to slot themselves behind ace Justin Ducshcherer.
Enter Trevor Cahill and Brett Anderson…
Cahill has been as good as advertised this spring going 2-0 with a 3.94 ERA and 3 BB/10 K in 16 IP. Anderson, for his part, has impressed as well, garnering a 1-1 record with a 1.54 ERA and 4 BB/2 K in 11.2 IP. Rotation hopefuls Gallagher, Eveland, Gonzalez, and Josh Outman have had up and down performances this spring, further muddyinig the waters, making manager Bob Geren’s decision more difficult.
Anderson starts today against the Chicago White Sox, and Cahill should get one more start later this week. Their performances should go a long way toward dictating the odds of either or both of them snagging a spot on the opening day 25 man roster.
The market has responded favorably to Cahill’s strong spring with his 2007 Bowman Chrome Draft Auto selling for $27-30 each. A more wallet-friendly purchase can be found with his ’07 Bowman Heritage cards which can be had for $1-2 each. Anderson has 1st year cards in the 2007 Bowman Chrome Prospects set that sell for $1-2 each and autographed cards in the ’07 Donruss Elite Extra set (#/549) available for $25-28 each.
My Take: Both of these kids are just 21 years old and have fully wound arbitration clocks. Pennants are not won in April, and the A’s have enough talent to stay in contention in the A.L. West. I think the prices for their autos are peaking right now in expectation that one or both of them will earn a spot in the A’s’ rotation.
I don’t think so.
Once either Anderson or Cahill (or both) get sent down to AAA Sacramento, the demand for their cards will subside significantly. Odds are that they will be back by June, and so will the clammoring for their cards. If you can land a chrome lot of Anderson or a Heritage lot of Cahill at around $2.00 each, it should be a good value buy right now.
Current Trevor Cahill Auctions:
Current Brett Anderson Auctions