From Scott Lauber at the Boston Herald on April 5, 2015:
Leave it to five graduate students to accomplish something that neither Ben Cherington nor Ruben Amaro Jr. has been able to achieve: A trade that would send Cole Hamels from the Phillies to the Red Sox.
On the eve of Opening Day — with Hamels set to throw the season’s first pitch to Sox leadoff man Mookie Betts at approximately 3:05 p.m. Monday, no less — we turn our attention to Cody Callahan, a 22-year-old student at Arizona State’s W.P. Carey School of Business. As a competitor in the Diamond Dollars Case Competition at the annual Society for American Baseball Research Analytics Conference last month in Phoenix, Callahan captained a team that was judged to have devised the most ideal Hamels trade.
And here it is: Hamels for pitching prospects Henry Owens and Eduardo Rodriguez, plus young outfielder Manuel Margot.
“The trade makes sense from the Phillies perspective,” Callahan wrote in an SB Nation article explaining the Arizona State team’s research process. “They add two quality arms and a promising outfielder, all of which are Baseball Prospectus Top 101 prospects. … However, the most significant reason we chose this trade is because of the value it will bring the Red Sox. The Red Sox had the highest (Needy Team Index), in both weight iterations, by a considerable amount. This shows us that the Red Sox have the most to gain by adding Hamels.”
We will spare you the complex statistical analysis and say only that Callahan and teammates Sean Aronson, Emerson Frostad, David Bocchino and Reid Smith used two computer models and applied metrics that measured the maximum value in a deal for the Phillies and several potential acquiring teams, including the Red Sox and the Cubs. Their trade proposals were judged by 12 executives from baseball operations departments of seven MLB teams against students from 21 other schools, including Stanford and the University of Chicago.
Originally published: April 6, 2015. Last Updated: April 6, 2015.