The Los Angeles Angels traded veteran infielder Alberto Callaspo to the Oakland Athletics this evening, receiving infield prospect Grant Green in return. Here is the scoop on the newest player brought in to reinforce the sagging Angels farm system.
Grant Green, INF: Green was Oakland's first round pick in 2009, drafted 13th overall from the University of Southern California and signed for $2,750,000. He has been a steady performer at every level in the Oakland farm system and has spent the last year and a half playing for Triple-A Sacramento in the Pacific Coast League, hitting .296/.338/.458 with 28 doubles and 15 homers in 2012, and .325/.379/.500 with 27 doubles and 11 homers so far in 2013. He received a brief opportunity in Oakland earlier this month, but went 0-fo15 with six strikeouts in five games; he was sent back to Triple-A last week.
Green is a 6-3, 180-pound right-handed hitter and thrower, born September 27, 1987. He has played multiple defensive positions after beginning his professional career as a shortstop, seeing exposure at every position except catcher and right field. He was playing second base this year at Sacramento and that's probably his best position, although he could also be used effectively at third base or as a super-utility type. He is a line drive hitter with doubles power who will pop an occasional home run. He is fairly aggressive and doesn't draw a large number of walks, but keeps his strikeout rate at a reasonable level. His speed is average and he's not much of a stealer.
For a detailed report on Green, check this Prospect of the Day article written earlier this month.
Green has nothing left to learn in the Pacific Coast League and the Angels, with the team out of contention and an aging roster, have little to lose by letting him play in the second half. From Oakland's point of view, Callaspo is more likely to help them win the division this year than Green, who didn't hit well and made two errors during his admittedly brief trial earlier this month.
Green will require adjustment time to major league conditions, but is more likely to help the Angels in the future than Callaspo, who is on the wrong side of the age divide. In other words, the deal makes sense for both teams.