Rafael Furcal Traded To Cardinals For Alex Castellanos

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Dodgers Send Double-A Outfielder To Cardinals For Furcal

Rafael Furcal waived his 10-and-5 rights Saturday in order for the Los Angeles Dodgers to complete a trade that sent him to the St. Louis Cardinals.

Sunday, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch’s Derrick Goold reported who the Dodgers will receive in return:

To complete the deal with Los Angeles for shortstop Rafael Furcal the Cardinals will send Class AA outfielder Alex Castellanos to the Dodgers.

The righthanded-hitting Castellanos was the Cardinals’ No. 10 draft pick in 2008, and is having his best minor league season, hitting .319/.379/.562 for Double-A Springfield. He’s also having a good power year, with 19 home runs and 62 RBI in 93 games. He turns 25 next week, which is kind of old for a player in his first season at Double-A.

Furcal is in the final year of a three-year contract signed with the Dodgers before the 2009 season which will pay him $12 million this year. There’s a club option for another $12 million for 2012, which presumably transfers to the Cardinals. Furcal is expected to arrive in St. Louis in time for tonight’s Cardinals game vs. the Cubs.

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Rafael Furcal Okays Trade To Cardinals

The St. Louis Cardinals worked out a deal with the Los Angeles Dodgers for oft-injured, occasionally productive shortstop Rafael Furcal, who had a full no-trade clause. The deal was being held up pending Furcal's approval of the deal.

Ned Colletti: So would you waive your no-trade clause to leave the Dod...
Rafael Furcal: Yes.

It's also possible that he clicked his heels and started wildly packing a suitcase right in front of Colletti. And according to Ken Rosenthal, the trade is official:

Not that there was much doubt, but Furcal approving deal to #Cardinals, source says.

Furcal will give the Cardinals some infield depth, and current shortstop Ryan Theriot stands to lose a good amount of playing time with the addition. 

There is no word yet on who is coming back to the Dodgers in the deal, and there are reports that the Dodgers will send cash -- or at least an oversized novelty check -- to the Cardinals to offset some of Furcal's salary.

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Rafael Furcal Trade To Cardinals Pending Acceptance

They can't all be sexy. The big story right now on Saturday is that Ubaldo Jimenez might be is on his way to Cleveland, and Doug Fister has already been traded to Detroit. But on another level - a lower level - we're on the verge of seeing Rafael Furcal get traded to St. Louis. Jon Heyman:

furcal has 24 hrs to decide whether to accept trade to .

furcal expected to OK deal to st. louis by tomorrow.

For the Dodgers, this is a dump. They want to clear as much salary as they can, and they want to make room for prospect Dee Gordon. For the Cardinals, meanwhile, Furcal is depth, or an upgrade, or hell, I don't know. He's been injured and he's had a terrible year at the plate, but he OPS'd .826 last season, so it's not like he's without his upside. He's a capable defensive shortstop who's hit well before, and he's presumably coming for cheap. That's not bad for a team that doesn't really trust Ryan Theriot.

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MLB Trade Rumors: Cards And Dodgers Talking About Rafael Furcal

There are at least a few contending teams that could use a good shortstop -- Hello, Milwaukee Brewers! -- but unless you count Jamey Carroll, there just aren't any good shortstops out there. So getting a "good shortstop" might mean giving that term a broad definition. Case in point ...

Furcal has no-trade protection, but he is open to deal to #Cardinals, I'm told #STLcards still talking with #dodgers to work out a fit.less than a minute ago via Twitter for iPhone Favorite Retweet Reply

 

In recent seasons, Furcal's usually been either injured or terrible. Or both. This season, he's played in only 37 games and batted .197/.272/.248. It's hard to see what the Cardinals might see in Furcal, but then again this is the team that thought Khalil Greene was the answer to their shortstop issues.

Ryan Theriot's hit decently (for a shortstop) this season, but he's a poor fielder and while Tony La Russa doesn't mind a defensively challenged second baseman, he prefers a shortstop who can pick it. Of course, that makes you wonder why the Cardinals didn't just keep Brendan Ryan. But it's pointless trying to get into La Russa's skull...

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MLB Trade Rumors: Rafael Furcal Drawing Interest

Los Angeles Dodgers shortstop Rafael Furcal is having a miserable year. He broke his thumb in April, which frustrated him so much that he openly contemplated retirement. Right after he returned to the lineup, he strained his oblique muscle. And while he's been healthy -- or as healthy as a player made from papier-mâché and butterfly wings can be -- he hasn't hit a lick, with a .196/.267/.241 line in 2011.

But he was one of the better shortstops in the league as recently as last season, so it makes sense that there would be teams interested in him, especially if the Dodgers send I.O.U.s that are hastily scribbled on cocktail napkins from the hotel bar cash back in the deal. From Ken Rosenthal:

Brewers doing background work on Furcal.

Calling the references he put on his résumé, verifying his diploma, stuff like that. The Brewers are currently starting Yuniesky Betancourt at shortstop, which is usually nature's way of telling a team to make a trade for a shortstop who isn't Yuniesky Betancourt.

But the Brewers aren't going to be alone in their pursuit. From Jayson Stark:

On another Dodgers front, one exec who spoke with them reports the Giants have talked to L.A. about shortstop Rafael Furcal.

The Giants are alternating between Brandon Crawford and Miguel Tejada (when he's healthy), and the former should probably be in the minors to work on his offense, while the latter should probably be on the bench to think about what he's done.

Furcal might be finished, but he also might be in small-sample hell, and could still be something similar to what he was last year. Considering that he probably wouldn't take much more than a C-list prospect or two, he could be an attractive option for teams like the Giants or Brewers.

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