Well, it’s now the end of non-waiver trades in MLB. Some surprising moves were made. The biggest being the end of the “Manny-Era” in Boston.
Manny Ramirez, the mercurial OF for the Sox, was shipped off to the land of granola (all fruits and nuts), while the Sox got Jason Bay, and the Pirates got a bevy of prospects. This was the block buster of the day, and perhpas the season, trumping even CC Sabathia going to Millwaukee.
Manny had to go. He had quit on the team, supposedly to “punish management,” which made him expendable not only to the brain trust, but to his teammates as well. I doubt even Big Poppi could defend Manny after his antics the past few weeks. So now Manny is Joe Torre’s problem with the Dodgers in LA. Can’t wait to see how Manny and Larry Bowa get along. Yes, the Sox gave up alot to get rid of Manny, they’re paying his salary, and gave up Craig Hansen and Brandon Moss as well. The Dodgers gave up Andy Laroche, and another prospect to the Pirates, who sent their star OF Jason Bay to Boston.
I actually kind of like this deal. The Sox get Bay, who is under contract for next year, and get rid of Manny, his antics, and the headache. The money really isn’t an issue, as they’d have been paying it if Manny had stayed. The Dodgers get a HoF hitter to help bolster their line up, and don’t have to pay him. The Pirates really make out on this deal. They get four players, trim their payroll slightly, and get set for having a solid team for the next 4-5 years. This makes up for them getting ripped off by the Yankees in the Nady/Marte deal.
The Yankees meanwhile picked up Pudge Rodriguez for Kyle Farnsworth. This is an intriguing deal, as the two were exchanged straight up. With Jorge Posada going down for the season (and perhaps longer, depending on his surgery), the Yanks were in the market for a solid all round catcher. The Tigers have been fading a bit, and seem to be very comfortable with Brandon Inge at catcher. In return for Pudge, the Tigers got a much needed reliever, one that had become expendedable in NY, and was finally getting his act together. Expect Fransworth to close some games the rest of the way for the Tigers.
The Brave’s actually dealt Mark Teixeira. Yes, this means that the Brave’s are surrendering this season and next. The Angels make out good with this deal, as Teixeira is a big time upgrade at 1B over Casey Kotchman, offensively and defensively. The Braves do get younger, and Kotchman is cheaper, and under contract for the next few years. The Halos will be very, very tough down the stretch, and in the post season.
Strangest deal was Junior Griffey going to the White Sox. this one makes very little sense to me. Other than giving Junior a shot at a ring (which he deserves), thsi doesn’t make much baseball sense. The White Sox are set at the corner OF poisitons (Carlos Quentin and Jermaine Dye), and Junior isn’t all that great in CF anymore, and hasn’t played there regularly in years. The DH slot isn’t much of an option either with Jim Thome entrenched there. I understand that Junior and the White Sox GM (whose neame escpaes me ATM, Ken Williams?), have a relationship going back a while, but even still. This one seems to be just about giving a bone to Junior.
And that was about it. The two earlier trades for pitchers, Sabathia to Milwaukee, Rich Harden to the Cubs, weren’t deadline deals, though were significant. As ESPN called it, this was a “dud line.”
I was suprised that certain players did not get moved. Jack Wilson from the Pirates, Brian Fuentes from the Rockies, Jeremy Hermidia from Florida, were all rumored to be going. None of them moved. I was more surprised that the Brave’s didn’t deal Jeff Francouer. I would have thought he had all but worn out his welcome in Atlanta. He may yet go, but probably not untill the off season. Some talked about guys like George Sherrill in Baltimore, but I doubted he would move, not after the Bedard trade which brought him to Baltimore, unless a team really overwhelmed the O’s with an offer. Dealing may not yet be done, but any deal will involved players needing to clear waivers before being traded.