A friend of mine asked me that last night. I think the best answer is that we don't yet know who Carlos Gomez is. He's 23 years old, and from all indications he's still a young 23. There are a lot of 23 year old ball players who we don't know who turn into very good major leaguers.
I think the part of this trade that we don't know yet - that we need to know in order to properly evaluate it - is what Doug Melvin is going to do with the money he saved by dumping Hardy and Cameron. When we know that, this trade might look on balance to be a very good deal for the Brewers.
A few Melvin quotes that I like:
"His defense will serve as a key component to us improving our pitching."
"My thinking is that guys with speed develop later. Look at some of the players from years ago: Otis Nixon, Lance Johnson, Tom Goodwin. Even Shane Victorino [of the Phillies] and Michael Bourn [of the Astros], two guys that are in the big leagues and play a good center field. They were 25, 26 before they made their big jump in the big leagues."
Melvin said the Brewers were planning to keep second baseman Rickie Weeks in the leadoff hole and would try to hone Gomez's offensive potential in another spot.
Those are things that you hear a good Major League GM say and not things that fans say about their fantasy teams. There's a huge difference.
As for J.J. Hardy - I don't think this is a huge loss and I think the Brewers got as much for him as they could. Remember, he was playing so poorly last season that the Brewers sent him down to the minors. Put yourself in some other teams' shoes. That doesn't look like a very attractive fish to land in a trade. Had the Brewers not weaseled another year of arbitration out of him by sending him down, I really don't think they would have gotten anything for him.