Baseball Prospectus has their opinion of the big trade up on their site. A couple of bits I thought I'd steal:
As good as the Mariners did, though, the big winners here were the Blue Jays. Behind the eight-ball with a pitcher they could not sign and could not trade without his permission, which likely meant a value-killing contract commitment, they were able to bring in three prospects who could all be part of winning teams in the middle of the decade. What Alex Anthopolous brought back dwarfs what the Twins got for Santana two years ago. It’s too easy to say that Drabek could grow into a Halladay replacement, but he has that kind of ability. Remember that the Blue Jays have shown a facility for turning lesser pitchers into league-average starters. Drabek has more talent than any pitcher in their system. D’Arnaud is a polished hitter with a strong enough arm to remain behind the plate, and while he doesn’t have the star potential Drabek has, he projects as an inexpensive, good player at a key position.
No pressure there on the poor kid. Could be a Halladay replacement. But I agree that Anthopoulos got far more that the Twins got for Sanatana. And under a bigger microscope.
Anthoplolous traded the third prospect, Taylor, to the A’s for Brett Wallace. This is an interesting challenge trade, dealing the more complete player for the player with one dominant skill. The Jays’ advantage in acquiring Wallace is that they will be able to develop him as a first baseman if need be, as they have only Lyle Overbay in his way, and that only for a year. Wallace isn’t as bad a third baseman as he looks to be on first glance, lacking lateral range but having acceptable hands and moving fairly well back and forth. An eventual move off of third has long been assumed inevitable, and if that is necessary, the Jays can fade that. Wallace joins Travis Snider and Adam Lind for what could end up as a championship-caliber middle of the lineup. For the A’s part, they get the player with the broader skill set who may fit their situation a bit better; the A’s need outfielders who can cover ground, and Taylor is a good right fielder who could make their team out of spring training.
This is the real interesting part of the trade to me. Michael Taylor is a good prospect and I was pretty happy when we thought the Jays were going to get. He would fill in the gaping hole in RF and if he didn't turn out to be great, Alex could have just said 'well we all thought he would be good'. But trading him like this shows guts. For the rest of each of their careers we'll be comparing the two of them. If Wallace turns into the better player, Alex is a genus. If Taylor turns out to be the better player, he'll never hear the end of it.
You do have to like that he has the guts to do it. Right or wrong a GM has to make the moves he believes in. If he thinks Wallace will be the better player, he can't be afraid of the reaction if he is wrong. If you worry about what happens if you are wrong, you won't do anything.
I hope it works out but more than that, I'm happy Alex has shown the guts needed to be a GM.