Green's trade opens door for Quentin

Green's trade opens door for Quentin

SAN FRANCISCO -- Shawn Green walked across the field at AT&T Park on Tuesday afternoon, stopping to hug Craig Counsell, who was doing some running in the outfield, head athletic trainer Ken Crenshaw as well as one of his coaches.

He then went into the Diamondbacks clubhouse, picked up a few personal belongings and said some goodbyes.

Green's tenure with the D-Backs had just come to an end as he was dealt along with cash to the Mets in exchange for Minor League pitcher Evan MacLane.

The move paves the way for the Diamondbacks to get more playing time for outfielder Carlos Quentin, who has been impressive since having his contract purchased from Triple-A Tucson last month. It also gives the D-Backs a little more money to play with next year as they will get some relief from the $9.5 million Green was owed.

"I think Carlos is playing very well," Arizona general manager Josh Byrnes said. "Obviously, like a lot of our guys, he hasn't swung the bat as well in August as he did in July, but he plays very good defense, and we trust him to play. We believe we're still in this to play well our last 37 games and try to get in [the playoffs], and we believe Carlos will be a big part of this."

Arizona entered Tuesday, four games in back of the Dodgers in the National League West and three games behind the Reds in the Wild Card race.

Quentin, who came into Tuesday's game with a .239 mark along with four homers and 18 RBIs in 67 at-bats, will get the bulk of the playing time in right, though D-Backs manager Bob Melvin could also shift Eric Byrnes over there at times to let another highly regarded outfield prospect, Chris Young, get some time in center.

The two teams had discussed the possibility of a deal with things heating up the last couple of days. Josh Byrnes had kept Green in the loop about his discussions with his Mets counterpart Omar Minaya.

Green had a no-trade clause that prohibited the D-Backs from trading him to another team other than the Giants, Padres and Angels without his permission. That didn't prove to be much of an obstacle, though, as Green decided that the chance to play on a team that is almost assured of a postseason berth was too enticing to pass up. So enticing in fact, he did not ask for any compensation in the deal.

"There were no negotiations on my part," he said. "I'm definitely excited for the opportunity. I really like the Mets' chances to get into the postseason and get to the World Series, and at this stage of my career, that was a big factor why I waived the no-trade, because there's not many more chances for me left to have an opportunity like this."

In his long career, Green's lone playoff experience came in 2004, when his Dodgers played in the NL Division Series. The Mets came into play Tuesday with the best record in the NL and a commanding 13 1/2-game lead in the NL East.

Green was also influenced by the fact that the Diamondbacks were clearly looking to play some of the younger talented prospects like Quentin and Young. Green was not pleased last week when Melvin benched him in consecutive games to play Quentin. Despite his displeasure, Green never took it out on the rookie.

"He was very professional," Quentin said. "He talked to me and he helped me with things. He was a great teammate, and he is a great guy."

Green's teammates expressed mixed emotions. Happy that he would get the opportunity to play in the postseason, but disappointed because he will no longer be with them.

"He was great," fellow veteran Luis Gonzalez said. "He came ready to play every day. He was one of those quiet, funny guys."

"Greenie was a buddy of mine," third baseman Chad Tracy said. "I'm definitely going to miss him. The team is going to miss him. He was a great guy to have around."

The D-Backs had a couple of good reports on MacLane, 23, who had a 3.86 ERA at Triple-A Norfolk at the time of the trade. He began the year with Double-A Binghamton before being promoted.

"He's a prospect we like," Josh Byrnes said. "Fairly similar to Matt Chico, so it's good to replace the pitching inventory that we gave up in the Livan [Hernandez] deal."

The money freed up in the deal will also help the D-Backs during the offseason.

"We got some financial relief in this deal and with enough significance that will help us with our spending power in 2007 most notably," Byrnes said.

Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.