Let the wheeling and dealing begin!http://mlb.mlb.com/NASApp/mlb/news/article.jsp?ymd=20061108&content_id=1737056&vkey=news_mlb&fext=.jsp&c_id=mlb
CLEVELAND -- Mere days into the Hot Stove season, the Indians have addressed one of their most glaring holes.
The Tribe acquired 23-year-old second baseman Josh Barfield from the Padres on Wednesday in exchange for infielder Kevin Kouzmanoff and reliever Andrew Brown.
Barfield, a legitimate Rookie of the Year candidate in the National League this season, gives the Indians some much-needed speed and fills the gap at a position that lacked an everyday presence since the July 30 trade of Ronnie Belliard to the Cardinals.
"He satisfies one of our biggest offseason needs, not only as a short-term fit, but also a potential long-term fit," general manager Mark Shapiro said of Barfield. "He already has a year of service under his belt, and he has the upside that often comes with young players. He's a good defender and is a guy that has a lot of upside potential with his bat. He's a great teammate, hard worker, and he complements our existing core of players really well."
Barfield, the son of former Blue Jays and Yankees outfielder and 1986 American League home run champ Jesse Barfield, made his Major League debut Opening Day in '06. He went on to hit .280 with 13 homers and 58 RBIs for the NL West champs and finished second among big-league rookies with 21 stolen bases.
When initially informed of the trade, Barfield was shocked. But he soon warmed up to the idea of playing in Jacobs Field.
"I had no idea I was even being considered to be traded," he said. "It took me by surprise. It's starting to sink in now, and I'm realizing it's going to be a better situation for me."