Trade lineage: It all starts with Jerry Dybzinski

This isn’t really a statistical piece, but it’s one that I think people who hang out around here might get into. I speak of trade lineage. Trade lineage is the idea that a player might trace his provenance on the team back to the players for whom he was traded and for whom they were traded and so on. As an example, I offer this.

  • In 1977, my beloved Cleveland Indians drafted Jerry Dybzinski out of Cleveland State University in the 15th round. Dybzinski turned out to be a decent utility infielder, but nothing special, and in 1983, the Indians swapped him to the Chicago White Soxfor Pat Tabler.
  • Tabler was famous for hitting about .500 with the bases loaded and about .223 elsewise. He had a few decent years for the Indians, who then packaged him off to the Royals in 1988 for Bud Black.
  • Black lasted for two seasons in Cleveland, until 1990 when the salary conscious Indians dumped him off on the Blue Jays for three pitchers,Mauro Gozzo, Steve Cummings, and Alex Sanchez. That one didn’t work out so well for the Indians.
  • In fact, Sanchez was such a disappointment, that the Indians actually sent him back to Toronto six weeks later for Willie Blair.
  • Blair, who somehow won 16 games for the Tigers in 1997, first made a stop off in Houston in 1992 after being traded (along with Eddie Taubensee) for Dave Rohde and some guy named Kenny Lofton.
  • Lofton, in his first tour with the Indians, was thrice an All-Star and seemed to the motor that drove the Indians until he and Alan Embree were traded in a surprise Spring Training move in 1997 for Marquis Grissom and David Justice.
  • Justice and the Indians had some good times, with the Indians reaching the World Series in 1997 and Justice wearing out a small patch of grass in left field of Jacobs Field. But, in 2000, the Indians shipped him off to the Yankees for a package including Ricky Ledee (that one actually made sense at the time), Zach Day, and Jake Westbrook.
  • Westbrook is still with the Indians, although Day was eventually traded for Milton Bradley, who lasted two seasons in Cleveland before the Indians got sick of him and traded him to the Dodgers for Franklin Gutierrez, who now platoons in right field.

It’s an interesting and rather colorful chain that links Gutierrez back to Dybzinski. It’s the type of chain that’s becoming all to rare nowadays. It’s not often any more that players are acquired by trade any more. Even then, they don’t usually stick around to be traded themselves.
I’m curious. This is the longest trade lineage for an active Cleveland Indian that I could find. It stretches over nine trades and thirty years. Can you beat that? The rules are that the trades all have to start with one player (A) and that player must have been traded for someone (B). B then must have uninterrupted service with the team in question until heis traded for C. Keep repeating the process until C becomes D becomes Ebecmes an active member of a current MLB team. The person who can find the longest trade lineage wins a cookie.


3 Responses to Trade lineage: It all starts with Jerry Dybzinski

  1. Ah, the Dybber. Someone remind him where second base is, and also remind him that it doesn’t change position during the game 🙂

  2. Zen says:

    I can actually take it a step further. Along with Gutierrez, the Tribe acquired a pitcher named Andrew Brown. Brown went with Kouzmanoff to San Diego in exchange for Josh Barfield. So the chain goes from one second baseman, Jerry Dybzinski, to another, Barfield. Cool.

  3. Edo River says:

    I always liked David Justice while he was with the Braves. However it is said that when Bonds was reportedly favourably inclined towards going to the Braves as he was leaving the Pirates, Chipper mumbled something to the effect of, “One jerk in the clubhouse is enough.” meaning Justice. As Chipper rules, so went Bonds to another team and Justice eventually left. (I admit I have not checked this rumor to see if Justice was there when Bonds might have come through)

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