It looks really good, but you know you shouldn't go for it. Now don't get me wrong, I think Zack Greinke is a fantastic, All-Star caliber, #1 starting pitching. And pairing him with Gallardo atop the Brewers rotation would be amazing. And as soon as I read Buster Olney's column Saturday morning where he broke the news that the Royals would shop Zack this offseason I immediately wondered if the Brewers had a chance, but then I thought about it. And like that second donut you think about eating, it seems like a great idea, but you know it isn't.
First there is the group of players you would have to give up for Greinke. It would probably take a package of three or four prospects that are big league ready now or very close to it. Think along the lines of having to part ways with some of the following; Brett Lawrie, Mat Gamel, Lorenzo Cain, Scooter Gennett, Zach Braddock, Mark Rogers, Jeremy Jeffress, Jake Odorizzi and Wily Peralta. These are all players who could be big parts of the next 6-8 years for the Brewers. Is it worth giving up a combination of three or four of these guys and somewhat giving up on the chance to be competitive for the next 6-8 years with cheap, young players?
If you make a deal for Zack, you also only have him signed for the next two seasons ($13.5 mill each year, not real expensive, but not cheap either). After that runs out, if he gives you the type of production you want and expect from him you have to believe he will test the Free Agent waters for one of those big contracts that so many ace type starting pitchers are getting lately. Now if Greinke is willing to talk possible extension before the deal is made and you can come to some sort of agreement, then that is a different story, but the odds of that are very slim.
I do see the point of view from some Brewers fans of going for it by trading for Greinke and keeping Prince for the 2011 season and just taking draft picks when he walks after the season. But going that route really doesn't guarantee you a World Series or even a playoff birth. If it did, sure go ahead make the Greinke deal and hold onto Prince. But of course there is no way of guaranteeing that. So keep all your good young prospects, trade Prince in the offseason for some pitching that can help now and go to war in 2011 with what is already a pretty good team. And know that you still might be able to compete in 2011 and will have plenty of help on the way with all the players I listed off above over the next couple of years to be in contention and get back to the postseason.