Over the course of the 2010 season, Oakland A's fans have watched with just a little bit of horror as former prospect Carlos Gonzalez has absolutely blown up in Colorado. He's hitting .332, has an OPS of .977, and has 31 home runs and 93 RBIs. For A's fans looking for that one big bat, seeing a guy dealt for half a season of Matt Holliday can't feel good.
And yet, a closer look reveals A's fans shouldn't be entirely depressed. A look at his home/road splits show he's benefitted from Coors Field just like a lot of other supposedly great hitters. I'm not saying Carlos Gonzalez isn't a good baseball player and I certainly do think the A's could use him at this juncture. However, it's tough to say he'd be a batting champ in Oakland this year.
At home in 238 at bats, Carlos Gonzalez is hitting .391 with an OPS of 1.226, 24 home runs and 63 RBIs. On the road in 247 at bats, Gonzalez is hitting .275 with an OPS of .733, 7 home runs and 32 RBIs. That's certainly a rather drastic split. Again, I'm not saying he's a bad baseball player. For an interesting look at Coors Field and it's possible effect on players, check out this FanPost from last month over at Athletics Nation.
The trade of Gonzalez has basically become Gonzalez and Huston Street for Michael Taylor. I say that because the A's dealt Gonzalez and Street for Holliday, turned Holliday into Brett Wallace, and turned Brett Wallace into Michael Taylor. There were some other bits and pieces, but that's the important gist of it for now.
Accordingly, any judgment must be reserved until Michael Taylor whether he'll go boom or bust. If Taylor turns into a strong hitter for the A's, then this trade won't be viewed with quite the same disdain. At the same time, if Taylor never pans out, then complaints can continue to pour in.