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Three-plus years later: How good was the Bedard trade?

At the time -- Feb. 8, 2008 -- it seemed like a great deal for the Orioles, five young players for lefty Erik Bedard.

By 2009, it looked like the steal of century, especially since the Frank Robinson deal was in a whole different millennium.

Now, though, maybe that trade with the Seattle Mariners doesn’t shine as brightly.

The rebuilding Orioles sent Bedard to Seattle for Adam Jones, Chris Tillman, George Sherrill, Kam Mickolio and Tony Butler in what was Andy MacPhail’s boldest and best move.

Jones, who at 25 has already received an All-Star nod and a Gold Glove, forever tips the scales in favor of the Orioles in this deal. No question.

Tillman, 23, was expected to be the second-best chip in the trade, and he is. But the jury is out on exactly what he’ll become.

Sherrill became the club’s closer and made the All-Star team for the Orioles in 2008 and then was shipped to the Los Angeles Dodgers near the trade deadline in 2009 for prospects Josh Bell and Steve Johnson.

Bell, now at Triple-A Norfolk, is still considered the potential third baseman of the future, but his star dulled after an uneven trial run in the majors in 2010. Johnson (St. Paul's) is still learning to throw strikes consistently at Double-A Bowie.

Mickolio (along with David Hernandez) was part of this offseason’s trade for Mark Reynolds. After persistent injuries, Butler is out of affiliated ball.

Bedard, meanwhile, is 12-11 with a 3.53 ERA in 37 starts with the Mariners since 2008. He has twice signed one-year, free-agent deals to stay in Seattle.

My take is that this was a very good trade for the Orioles, one of the top five in franchise history. But I’m not sure I’d call it great anymore. And I certainly don’t think it had the impact we once thought it would. Although a lot of that will be determined as the careers of Jones, Tillman and, to a lesser extent, Bell, progress.

Here’s the perspective from my buddy Larry Stone at the Seattle Times.

Now I want your thoughts.

Daily Think Special: Three-plus years later, how good was the Erik Bedard trade for the Orioles?

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