The Indians made further steps to improve their bullpen late last night by trading jack-of-all-trades Mark DeRosa to the Cardinals for RHP Chris Perez and a player to be named later. Perez is a closer prospect, and if the PTBNL is Jess Todd, they'll have acquired two above-average arms for the pen.
Unfortunately, while the bullpen is obviously Cleveland's weakness, you don't trade a guy with a bat as good as DeRosa's (he was on pace for 28 HR this year) for two bullpen arms. When you factor in DeRosa's above-average multipositional defense and the Cardinals' desperate need for a bat, you have to wonder what, exactly, Mark Shapiro was doing.
Not only is this return not enough for a player of DeRosa's caliber, but why would you trade him now? Why not wait til a time closer to the deadline, when you certainly could've gotten more than a couple relief arms? And especially coming from the Cardinals, who clearly lost their faith in Perez early this year - you know that they key part of the deal is a person that the team trading him doesn't even think that highly of!
Far be it from us to suggest that Shapiro doesn't know what he's doing; the guy did pull in Brandon Phillips, Grady Sizemore, and Cliff Lee for a song. But he erred this time.