I don't understand why people are so down on this guy, i mean in my humble opinion he had a great rookie year! I say give the kid a chance to get in 500 at bats. I'd put money on it that he would get at least 20 homeruns, which is about the same production for what a player like Overbay could accomplish. I know he struggled against righties, but he also didn't really get a stab at playing against them. Also his numbers suffered in the final couple months but i would bet that's a result from fatigue after playing his first full season in the majors after a couple of shortened seasons due to injuries in the minors.
If Niekro gets 500 ab's i'd say he bats around this:
.268 with 22 homeruns
These numbers don't really seem too farfetched to me, and it would be better than trading away potentially good prospects for a similar but proven player like Overbay.