Eric Espada / Stringer

MLB Trade Deadline: Winners and Losers

August 01, 2019 - 5:29 pm
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By Charlie O @Charlieo1320

Listen to your team news NOW.

Up until the last 60 minutes of the trade deadline, it appeared that Major League Baseball was going to be a “BIG” loser with its new single trade deadline. No significant deals had hit the transaction wire, and it appeared that teams just were not sure how to handle having to make season-changing decisions on July 31.

Suddenly in the final hour, it all broke loose. Teams came to grips with the fact that if they did not act now - there would be no chance to make significant roster changes for the rest of the season. It was like being at an auction as the auctioneer calls going once, going twice … then, all the general managers woke up and said we must act now!

The Winners

  • Houston Astros: Every reporter and analyst agree that the Astros saved the day. The last-minute trade for Zack Greinke not only changed the entire balance of power among the World Championship contenders, it made trade deadline day interesting. The trade also brought up the obvious comparisons to the Justin Verlander trade two years ago that set Houston up for a World Championship. The other part of this deal that makes it a winner for the Astros is that it is not a rental. Greinke is signed through 2021 which means they have built a formable starting pitching staff for the next several seasons. Houston also added starter Aaron Sanchez and reliever Joe Biagini in a separate deal with the Blue Jays. They know when it comes playoff time – it’s all about the pitching.
     
  • Atlanta Braves: The Braves needed relief pitching and outfield help. They were not able to find someone to fill in for the injured Nick Markakis, but they were able to find relievers. The Braves brought in RHP Chris Martin from Texas, RHP Mark Melancon from the Giants and Shane Green from Detroit. Atlanta picked up the three relievers without having to empty their minor league system of all its top prospects.
     
  • Washington Nationals: The Nats - who are chasing a Wild Card slot as of today - decided to address their bullpen issues deadline day. They picked up right-handers Daniel Hudson and Hunter Strickland to go with left-hander Roenis Elias. None of these additions are going to make fans go – WOW! – but they will be valuable innings eaters as the season progresses.
     
  • Chicago Cubs: The Cubbies spirited outfielder Nicholas Castellanos out of Detroit and will plant him in right field while batting him in the middle of the order. The Cubs are hoping he will creep up to 290-plus for his batting average to give them a boost down the stretch. The Cubs also added utility man Tony Kemp from the Astros. In the final two months, a good utility man can be invaluable.

They did OK

  • Cleveland Indians: They unloaded Trevor “I can throw the ball over the center field wall” Bauer to the Reds for “I have never backed down from a fight in my life” Yasiel Puig. Puig will give the Indians a big punch on offense, but Bauer may prove to be a big loss in the long term.
     
  • Milwaukee Brewers: They added to their pitching corps by picking up Drew Pomeranz and Ray Black. The pick ups will not be headline making trades but should be solid additions for the “Brew Crew” down the stretch.
     
  • Oakland Athletics: The A’s made a solid addition to their starting pitching rotation by trading for the Reds Tanner Roark. He has solid experience with an impressive walk to strike out ratio. He was at Arby’s ordering a sandwich when he found out he had been traded.
     
  • San Francisco Giants: The Giants picked up Scooter Gennett from the Cincinnati Reds for a player to be named later. Gennett who was once the darling of the Reds had become the odd man out due to injuries. A change of scenery may be exactly what this talented young player needs to find his way again in the Major Leagues.

The Losers

  • New York Yankees: The Yankees needed a starting pitcher. They came away with nothing. When they are playing the Houston Astros in the playoffs and Zack Greinke beats them, the New York fans and media will eat them alive!
     
  • Boston Red Sox: The Sox needed a reliever and a starter. They came away with “zookie”. How is that possible? Money certainly should not have been an issue. The lack of a significant move in “Beantown” is a conundrum.
     
  • Los Angeles Dodgers: They needed a “big time” closer but were not willing to step up to the plate and pay the price. When they watch someone else celebrate winning the World Series, they will regret that decision over and over.
     
  • Minnesota Twins: This team has let an 11-game lead dwindle away. They did shore up their bullpen, but the Twins needed a frontline starter in the worst way. It is true that prices were very high for starters, but they may regret not paying up for a strong arm.

Live with your choices

This is the first season without a waiver trade session. There will be no more trades made in the Major Leagues. The only additions teams can make will come from their farm systems and from players cut from other teams. It is going to be an interesting final two months of baseball before the playoffs begin.

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