Power Bat at Shortstop
5. Troy Tulowitzki and LaTroy Hawkins for Jose Reyes, Miguel Castro, Jeff Hoffman, and Jesus Tinoco
This trade is an interesting one to break down as Troy Tulowitzki was not dominating at the plate but was sure-handed on the field and LaTroy Hawkins was lights out from the bullpen during the regular season but couldn’t get outs in the playoffs.
We’ll first look at why the trade needed to happen. The Blue Jays had Jose Reyes at shortstop and he was a carefree, type of guy who loved everything about baseball. The problem was that he became almost too lackadaisical on the field. Reyes was in the midst of the worst defensive season of his career while allowing routine balls to dribble through his feet. From all accounts, it appeared he was a great teammate and a lot of players weren’t happy with the team moving Reyes out.
Troy Tulowitzki brought a no-nonsense type attitude to the ball team. He was one of the top shortstops in baseball over the last decade when he could stay healthy. Tulowitzki made an immediate impact and had a first game to remember when he went 3 for 5 with two doubles and a home run. The veteran shortstop started to struggle down the stretch at the plate which was capped off when he collided with Kevin Pillar on a pop fly that cracked his shoulder blade. The injury kept him out of the line-up for almost three weeks leading into the playoffs.
The playoffs that year were two drastically different series for Tulowitzki. In the ALDS he had just two hits in 21 at-bats and struck out seven times. In the ALCS he turned things around as he led all Blue Jays with seven hits and seven RBI while batting .304. Tulowitzki would be a main part of the Blue Jays playoff push the following season as well and batted .462 in the ALDS.
Hawkins was a veteran arm out of the bullpen that was going to retire at the end of the season. He was absolutely dominant out of the pen for the first month as he allowed just one earned run over 11.1 IP in 12 appearances. However, once the calendar turned to September he struggled allowing four earned runs in just five innings pitched. In the playoffs, he had three appearances for 1.2 IP and allowed 7 runs.