“Baseball–Winners & Losers”
The day after, the pennant races sure look and feel different.
Thirty trades were made at the trading deadline, but 1-deal made at the 11th hour, turned baseball upside down.
Time to look at the Winners & Losers at the deadline.
ASTROS…Big bats now supported by big arms. We’ll see who Houston has to play in the World Series, for it seems they have locked up the American League pennant. The trade for Arizona ace Zach Greinke and his 78M in remaining contract, stunned everyone. The deal came moments before the second Astros deal was announced, the arrival of Blue Jays starter-reliever Aaron Sanchez. Greinke joins Justin Verlander and Garritt Cole in a big three unmatched by any other rotation in baseball. That trio right now has a combined (36-13) record this year, with 2-months left in the season. That starting staff helped by all those big bats, Altuve, Correa, Springer Bregman and more. Wow.
ATLANTA…They need relief help, and they dealt for relief help. Shane Greene comes from Detroit with a (1.94-ERA). Veteran Mark Melanin and his curveball arrives from the Giants. Setup man Chris Martin dealt from Texas. They will help former starter Sean Newcomb, who was pushed into the bullpen at midseason. Atlanta has a pretty good hitting lineup, now they have closers with a track record to hep the starters.
CUBS…Though Chicago seems to have chronic relief pitching problems, they added another bat and multi-position player in Nick Castellanos, who will like Wrigley Field a lot more than the big Comerica Park in Detroit. Castellansos will find a lot better pitches to hit surrounded by the likes of Rizzo-Bryant-Baez-Schwarber-Heyward in that batting order. The Cubs are ready to battle the Cardinals.
INDIANS….The pitching staff is finally getting healthy, but the offense was anemic. Getting Corey Klubeer back in the rotation with Shane Bieber and Mike Clevenger made Trevor Bauer expendable. The home run power that Franmil Reyes-Yasiel Puig provide will greatly aid a Tribe batting order. Cleveland was tired of Bauer’s antics too. They are ready for the dogfight with Minnesota.
A’s…They did this week what they did this time last year, and it got them a 90-win season and a spot in the playoffs. Trading for starter Tanner Roark, Homer Bailey and reliever Jake Diekmann will help. Getting hurt starters back off the DL, will also help in the next 6-weeks. The A’s are still waiting for Khris Davis to find his home run groove since coming off the DL.
WASHINGTON…A strong midseason surge has put them in the pennant race. Strong starting pitching, though you hope Max Scherzer’s back issues arento chronic, but they have gone thru lots of relievers. They added 3-at the deadline, so they hope 1-can become trustworthy.
YANKEES….Strangled by the luxury tax, and still trying to get all their home run hitters back in the lineup off the disabled list, New York just could not find the right fit. They didn’t want to deal away chunks of the farm system and now they pay the price for the decision. The starting rotation is running on fumes, with a (7.09-ERA) in July alone. There’s no one left in the farm system, and a tired and ailing group of veterans in the rotation is all that’s left with 8-weeks to go.
BOSTON…They need bullpen help, but didn’t want to overpay. Chris Sale and Ric Porcello are having substandard seasons, and the batting order is not what it was this time a year, when they were dropping home run bombs everywhere. They’re up against the luxury tax too. They cannot matchup with the other AL-power in Houston.
DODGERS…Tough to be critical when you are (71-39) at the deadline, but they need help for Kenley Jansen, their legendary closer, and they did not do it. Getting veteran infielder Jedd Gyorko from the Cardinals helps, considering they have 3-ailing infielders. Gyorko will hit some home runs and can play 3-infield positions. The wildcard for LA, the ability to move a starter or two into a bullpen role, which is where Kenta Maeda-Julio Urias might wind up. They just did not want to give up any of the next wave of blue-chippers in the bullpen.
MILWAUKEE….Pitching problems to start the season, pitching problems in the playoff race. Trading for Drew Pomeranz and Jordan Lyles does nothing to fix the season long weakness they have had.
ANGELS….Everyone wanted young outfielder Jo Adell in a deal. The Angels kept him, so no deal for a pitcher, and no hope any longer in the pennant race. The death of Tyler Skaggs, the surgeries to the staff, the wasted money on Matt Harvey-Cody Allen killing the team.
PADRES….You can stockpile lots of talent in the farm system, but nobody gives out Rings for winning the minor leagues. The Padres, desperate to end losing seasons, dealt away a 24-year old proven bat, Franmil Reyes, for a 21-year old prospect. Over the long haul, it just won’t be the same offense the rest of the season, and likely another sub-500-season for a team we thought might arrive this year.
MINNESOTA…A great season and a great lineup in Twin Cities. They needed bullpen help. Just don’t know if Sergio Romo or Sam Dyson acquisitions are the right ones.