Even if it was somewhat overshadowed by the Yankees’ trade for Todd Frazier, it’s hard not to go to wake up happy as an Arizona fan this morning. For the reviews are in and... Well, it has been a very long time since the general opinion has been so positive about a trade involving the Diamondbacks. A Fox Sports poll as to who “won” the trade shows an 84% landslide for Arizona, at time of writing. There was hardly any neutral observers to be found who weren’t generally in agreement. Here is a selection of what people have said about the deal.
As a team with no farm system to speak of, there’s no need to worry about
mortgaging the future for a rental; in that sense, Martinez represents a market inefficiency that the Diamondbacks expertly exploited. Kudos to first-year general manager Mike Hazen, already off to a strong start in the desert, for pulling off a deal that makes his team markedly better without sacrificing anything of value going forward.
— Jon Taylor, Sports Illustrated
J.D. Martinez is a pretty damn good hitter. I understand the idea of not giving up too much for midtier rentals. But when you have the top rentals -- and I think J.D. Martinez is the top rental bat -- giving up two or three names isn't that crazy. Mike Hazen is a very smart guy. If he and his staff felt like the value is there, I'm certain that it is.
-- un-named National League GM
Love the J.D. Martinez acquisition for Arizona. Best hitter on the market. General consensus from three scouts who recently have canvassed the D-backs' system: The Tigers' return for J.D. Martinez was very light.
— Jeff Passan, Yahoo
The Diamondbacks were one of the most complete teams before the Martinez swap. They could have stood pat and been regarded as a solid sleeper pick to push the Dodgers and Washington Nationals in the NL. Now, the sleeper business is over. Every potential playoff opponent should be wide awake. These D-Backs are revving their engine, and the sound is loud and clear.
— Jacob Shafer, Bleacher Report
I expected far more to go to Detroit than what was in the package the Tigers ultimately accepted. The D-backs kept their best prospects and still pulled off the deal... [It’s] a far cry from losing Anthony Banda, Taylor Clarke, Pavin Smith, Domingo Leyba or Jon Duplantier. Put bluntly, the D-backs did exceedingly well here.
-- Jeff Wiser, Inside the Zona
Even some of those who traditionally are perceived as having little or nothing positive to say about Arizona, came out on our side of this one.
This seems like a very light return for JD Martinez even as a rental; I don't think Arizona gave up any of their top ten prospects in the deal, but they got a player who's probably worth two wins to them the rest of the season.
-- Keith Law, ESPN
Hard not to like this for Arizona. They get an elite hitter for the stretch run for three prospects that, to be honest, don’t look all that special. You never like giving up any potential, but for the present upgrade, this looks like Arizona did quite well.
-- Dave Cameron, Fangraphs
But if you wanted to find someone not happy with the trade, you had to go no further than the Tigers’ fanbase. Let’s compare and contrast the results of our poll on the trade, with the one over on our siblings at Bless You Boys:
Ouch. That’ll leave a mark. Though I can’t believe that some people there seriously thought there was a chance they would get Anthony Banda for 21⁄2 months of Martinez. I guess fans always over-estimate the value of their own favorites. Elsewhere, there’s a sad sense of realism: “If that return seems underwhelming for unquestionably the best hitter to be available this July, you’re right. The return is underwhelming... Without a doubt, the Tigers are making the correct decision to trade away expiring contracts and rebuild for the future. Unfortunately, with the wrong man at the helm, the rebuild process will be less glamorous than the Tigers’ fanbase was hoping for.”
For D-backs fans, it’s a bracing affirmation that the team is serious about contending, and is not happy simply to coast into the wild-card game, on the back of the very pleasant surprise which has been this season. I’m not sure I even remember the last time we were buyers at the deadline. Maybe 2011, when we acquired Jason Marquis and Brad Ziegler? It’s a refreshing change, and combined with the team returning emphatically to their winning ways, definitely made for one of the best days in the season so far.