I am not a fan of this. Just when we finally get a player that the fan base can cling to besides Ichiro, there are trade rumors abound. Of course, the only team that could give us the 1 for 5 players deal being rumored are the dreaded Yankees.
Why Felix and why now? I am certain this falls under the "buy low, sell high" mentality. Buy low equals finding a gem in the Venezuelan rough. Sell high equating to providing the most hated team in the world, with one of the best pitchers. I would rather see Ichiro traded than Felix. I am more of a pitching fan, which could play a role, however his salary is too high for us to bring in any decent bats. Give us five decent prospects for Ichiro and we could be play in October within 2-3 years. Trade Felix, with no true "#1" starter behind him, and you have bound us to a season of record breaking loses and low attendance.
If we work on building a true staff around Felix, with Bedard staying healthy and Pineda coming up mid year, we could deliver solid pitching for a few years before salaries need to be revisited. If we are able to trade Ichiro for several decent prospects, we might build an offense that will not be last in the league in runs.
Right now, Ichiro has the value of bringing fans to the ballpark. I understand this is a good thing, but winning also brings in fans. If we go through yet another 100 lose season, not even Ichiro can pack the house. We will see how long these rumors last.