Minnesota's trade of centerfielder Denard Span to Washington for pitching prospect Alex Meyer could shed light on the current trade value of Jacoby Ellsbury.
Ellsbury, who is a few months older than Span, has been valued at 18.7 WAR* in 581 career games while Span has been valued at 15.9 WAR in 589 career games. Ellsbury got 9.4 of his WAR in 2011 while Span has been more consistent.
Ellsbury remains under his team's control for only one more year at a projected salary of $8.1 millon. Span is under contract for $4.75 million in 2013 and $6.5 million in 2014 with a $9 million team option, or $500,000 buyout, for 2015.
Meyer, a 22-year-old righthander taken with the 23rd pick in the 2011 draft, posted good numbers between A and High A last season:
John Sickels of Minor League Ball ranked Meyer No. 28 on his preliminary list of Top 50 pitching prospects:
* Wins Above Replacement as reported at FanGraphs. Baseball Reference gives Span a 16.5-14.4 edge in career WAR.
I wish I could edit the thread title to "Denard Span trade, Ellsbury value"