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Winners and losers at the trade deadline

Jul 31, 2013, 5:50 PM EDT

Jake Peavy Getty Images

Given how disappointing this afternoon’s trade deadline proved to be, it’s only fair that the annual winners and losers column is a little lopsided. Let’s get right to it:

Winners

Red Sox: I didn’t like the idea of Boston giving up top prospects for Jake Peavy because I just didn’t see him being a big upgrade over the rest of their candidates for the postseason rotation. Parting with Jose Iglesias for him, on the other hand, is something I can get behind. Iglesias had an incredible run for the Red Sox earlier this season, but he was a lifetime .257/.307/314 hitter in the minors. He had a .588 OPS in 829 Triple-A at-bats.  And while he was still at .330 for Boston this season, he had returned to earth in a big way this month, batting .205/.247/.217 in 83 at-bats during July. I think Iglesias will be a useful regular for a long time, but for a big-spending team like the Red Sox, he was always going to be expendable. They sold high when they sent him to Detroit in the three-team swap.

Angels: Getting Grant Green from the A’s for Alberto Callaspo was a nice little coup. Green is 25 and still doesn’t have a position, which is a problem, but he’s also hit .325/.379/.500 in Triple-A this year. The Angels should start working him out at third. Some will argue that the Angels should have moved Howie Kendrick and Erick Aybar as well, but I’m not so sure. Both have reasonable contracts, and the Angels almost certainly would have downgraded had they tried to replace either in free agency this winter. They would have needed a big return to justify dealing either.

Braves: Many wanted the Braves to get a starter with Tim Hudson out. I think they’re just fine with a front six of Mike Minor, Kris Medlen, Julio Teheran, Paul Maholm, Brandon Beachy and Alex Wood. And getting the perpetually underrated Scott Downs from the Angels for Cory Rasmus was nice. I’m not positive how he does it, but Downs has a 1.76 ERA again this year. Last year’s 3.15 mark was his worst since 2006, and that was really the result of two bad weeks (nine of the 16 runs he allowed came in a stretch of five appearances).

Cardinals: The slumping Cardinals failed to add, but the important thing for them is that the Pirates and Reds didn’t make any additions, either. St. Louis is still the NL Central’s best team on paper, provided that Yadier Molina isn’t out for much more than the minimum 15 days with his sprained knee. All bets are off if his absence extends into September.

Cubs: The lack of action on Wednesday suggests that the Cubs were smart to move Matt Garza, Scott Feldman and Alfonso Soriano when they did. They clearly got a better return for Garza, a free agent at season’s end, than the White Sox did for Peavy, even though Peavy is locked up for another year.

Dodgers: Drew Butera, yo. But, no, the Dodgers are here for the same reason as the Cardinals. Maybe the Diamondbacks engaged in some addition by subtraction in shedding Ian Kennedy, but they didn’t do much addition by addition.

Losers

Mariners: Kendrys Morales, Oliver Perez, Michael Morse, Raul Ibanez and Joe Saunders are all going to be free agents this winter, and the 50-56 Mariners, remaining stubborn under GM Jack Zduriencik’s guidance, didn’t cash any of them in. Morales and Perez would have brought significant returns. At least some of the other teams that declined to sell could have chances to get deals done in August, but I’m not sure any of the Mariners listed above will clear waivers, limiting the team’s options.

Royals: Winners of seven in a row to move to 52-51 on the season, the Royals refused to sell. Which is understandable. But the fact that they did choose to buy, acquiring outfielder Justin Maxwell from the Astros, and still didn’t land an upgrade from Chris Getz at second base is tough to take. It’s not like they needed a star; they’ve gotten so little production from second base for years now that just about anything would have done.

Indians: One of the rumors going around Wednesday was that the Indians were aiming for a big-time starter. Instead, they stayed quiet; their only deadline pickup was lefty reliever Marc Rzepczynski, who was unwanted by the Cardinals. Something to energize the fanbase in Cleveland would have been welcome; the Indians have the AL’s sixth-best record, so they’re right in the thick of things.

Blue Jays: The Blue Jays could have cashed in closer Casey Janssen and turned a tidy profit. They also had a couple of nice role players in Emilio Bonifacio and Rajai Davis to dangle. They did nothing.

White Sox: The White Sox’s top picks in the 2009, 2011 and 2012 drafts were outfielders (Chris Sale was the choice in 2010). Baseball America said their No. 1, No. 2 and No. 5 prospects at the start of the season were outfielders. Yet when they chose to deal Peavy, they did it for another outfielder, getting Avisail Garcia from the Tigers. They also dealt Matt Thornton to Boston for an outfielder (Brandon Jacobs) earlier in the month. In the abstract, I don’t mind Peavy for Garcia. It’s decent value. The White Sox, though, have questions throughout the infield and a dearth of young pitching in the minors. I’m not sure what they’re building.

Phillies: Ruben Amaro Jr. is still likely shocked and appalled that no team was willing to surrender two top prospects for Michael Young. The Michael Young.

Marlins: OK, so the Marlins didn’t put Giancarlo Stanton on the block yet. That’s fine. But then they wouldn’t talk about relievers Steve Cishek and Michael Dunn. Even more incredibly, they weren’t even interested in picking up a prospect for a 34-year-old Chad Qualls today. The only thing I can figure is that the commissioner’s office and the MLBPA is back whispering in the Marlins’ ears about their use of revenue sharing money.

Giants: The flagging Giants had a chance to refuel the farm system a bit, which could have been a silver lining in a very disappointing season. Instead, they held on to Hunter Pence, Tim Lincecum and even Javier Lopez. Maybe they’ll get compensation picks if Pence and Lincecum leave as free agents or maybe they’ll even deal Lincecum in August, but with plenty of contenders looking for a middle-of-the-order bat and starting pitching, it’s disappointing that they resisted overtures.

Astros clubhouse attendants: Good luck with those end-of-season tips. With Bud Norris, Carlos Pena and Jose Veras gone, Erik Bedard in now the highest-paid Astro at $1.15 million this season. That’s about what Alex Rodriguez makes per week.

  1. afrancis55 - Jul 31, 2013 at 6:16 PM

    Losers: The fans.

    • tiggersarebouncy - Jul 31, 2013 at 7:37 PM

      Losers: this guy Poilet!! Can you believe he thinks the blosox did a good job getting old brokedown Jake Peavy? I can’t wait to see him get jackhammered in the AL East!! And who cares that the One True Sox are stockpiling outfielders? If Avisail Garcia keeps getting better he could be the best of the lot!!

      • Chip Caray's Eyebrows - Jul 31, 2013 at 10:53 PM

        Additional Losers: People who think it’s clever to refer to a guy by some unimaginative conversion of his name into a derogatory term.

      • tiggersarebouncy - Aug 1, 2013 at 10:34 AM

        How about people who make fun of Wally Sczerbiak with theyre screen names?

    • polonelmeagrejr - Aug 1, 2013 at 5:50 AM

      Morales and Perez would have brought significant returns. THe only returns I can imagine for Ollie is the team acquiring him trying to return him at Customer Service.

  2. mdpickles - Jul 31, 2013 at 6:20 PM

    Hope this gets revisited at the end of the year.

  3. proudlycanadian - Jul 31, 2013 at 6:29 PM

    The biggest losers included the cabal of media rumor mongers who had little to work on this year. Even though they realized that most of the stories leaked to them were unlikely to occur they were forced to write something.

    • proudlycanadian - Jul 31, 2013 at 8:49 PM

      In a way, I am surprised that the Jays did not trade a relief pitcher as they do have a surplus. On the other hand, the quality of the players offered in trade was probably a lot inferior to quality the pitchers in the Toronto pen. Santos will probably come off the DL tomorrow creating an 8 man pen. I expect that Melky will go on the DL because he is having difficulty running due to hamstring and knee injuries. Given his health, the Jays were certainly not going to trade Davis or Bonifacio as suggested by Matthew.

  4. pitpenguinsrulez - Jul 31, 2013 at 6:32 PM

    The Pirates not making a move just shows how much Nutting ACTUALLY cares!

    • poolboy87 - Jul 31, 2013 at 6:46 PM

      Or it shows how utterly crappy the trade market was this year, how ridiculous the sellers were being, and how the Pirates decided to play the long game then way overpay in a year when they’re already in a very good position.

      • thebadguyswon - Jul 31, 2013 at 7:03 PM

        You’re onto something. The seller’s asking prices were ridiculous. Three top prospects and you pick up the tab for Cliff Lee??!! A top prospect for Marlon Byrd??!!

        GTFOH.

      • biasedhomer - Jul 31, 2013 at 7:07 PM

        Buyers need to get used to it. There will always be more teams in contention at the deadline since there are 2 wildcard spots. It will be no different next year.

    • polonelmeagrejr - Aug 1, 2013 at 5:51 AM

      WHy would you think he doesn’t CARE?

  5. tigers182 - Jul 31, 2013 at 6:41 PM

    Tigers got a quality closer and great young ss for a couple of outfielders they’ll never use.

    • Minoring In Baseball - Jul 31, 2013 at 11:24 PM

      They used Garcia perfectly as trade bait. With Tu up doing well and Castellanos primed to step in a in a season or two, there was no place for him. I’ll miss watching Vasquez in WM, but being a Single-A player who knows how he’ll turn out. I liked Villarreal, too, but he hasn’t cured his control problems.
      http://minoringinbaseball.com/

    • dan1111 - Aug 1, 2013 at 1:17 AM

      The Tigers traded away an outfielder who may turn into a legitimate star for someone who has shown little ability to hit outside of a couple months this season. They might come to regret that.

  6. hojo20 - Jul 31, 2013 at 6:42 PM

    Losers: the fans. The wildcards have ruined the trade deadline.

    • dondada10 - Jul 31, 2013 at 8:12 PM

      Wouldn’t more playoff spots equate to more teams being in contention? And wouldn’t more teams in contention equate to more action toward the trade deadline?

    • Chip Caray's Eyebrows - Jul 31, 2013 at 10:56 PM

      This is silly, because if the second wild card means less action at the trade deadline, it’s because more teams are in contention. If more teams are in contention, more fans get to root for a team that has a chance at the postseason. That’s certainly not a bad deal for the fans.

      Don’t mistake this as an argument in favor of the second wild card. Just an argument against your flawed logic.

  7. poolboy87 - Jul 31, 2013 at 6:49 PM

    Not sure that I would agree with the Angels…they unloaded their cheap, solid 3rd baseman for a 25 year old minor league 3rd baseman. They kept their two best tradable contracts and STILL have Jerome Williams and ??? in their rotation with a lot of bad contracts going into next year…

  8. Old Gator - Jul 31, 2013 at 6:51 PM

    I wrote last week that the Feesh weren’t going to move anyone of note because the Player’s Association and, even locked into their Bufogenesis trance, the league orifice were watching them like a hawk. I don’t think there was much whispering going on – just little notes taped to the ignition on the Chihuahua’s steering column that said things like boom! or a rubber cockaroach at the bottom of Scrooge McLoria’s cognac bottle inscribed “eccchhh, you’re poisoned.”

    • unclemosesgreen - Jul 31, 2013 at 7:41 PM

      hee hee

    • jwbiii - Jul 31, 2013 at 7:41 PM

      True, but Cishek and Dunn are making close to the minimum anyway and wouldn’t really effect their bottom line. They already sold their “big budget” player, Nolasco.

  9. nickmiller63 - Jul 31, 2013 at 6:52 PM

    So this comment refers only to your Giants-related remarks: how do you know what they resisted? Impossible to define someone as a deadline loser without knowing what they could have had.

    • biasedhomer - Jul 31, 2013 at 7:10 PM

      Most of this winners and losers is the writers speculation on what teams could have gotten.

      You need buyers to sell players to, its not just, “IMO this player is worth this much, so some team will give that up.”

      • proudlycanadian - Jul 31, 2013 at 7:18 PM

        Agreed! It is very easy to be on the outside and make trade proposals. In real life, nobody knows what deals were actually proposed. Often, the best strategy is to do nothing. There will a better opportunity to make trades in the offseason.

  10. georgewashingtonsghost - Jul 31, 2013 at 6:53 PM

    I agree with Tigers182. Tigers did well with trades this week.

  11. jashton11 - Jul 31, 2013 at 6:53 PM

    “Marlins: OK, so the Marlins didn’t put Giancarlo Stanton on the block yet. That’s fine. But then they wouldn’t talk about relievers Steve Cishek and Michael Dunn. Even more incredibly, they weren’t even interested in picking up a prospect for a 34-year-old Chad Qualls today.”

    Trading Cishek, Dunn and Qualls would have wrecked their plans to contend in 2014.

  12. rje49 - Jul 31, 2013 at 6:58 PM

    While I’m aware Iglesias’ hitting was expectedly tailing off, I’ll miss his glove. Boy, is he slick out there, whereas the rest of the bunch they’ve tried at third base makes me cringe when the ball is hit to them.

  13. jackvcr - Jul 31, 2013 at 7:03 PM

    You certainly got the first name in the correct spot directly under LOSERS: Mariners.
    How much longer do we have to suffer under the ineptitude of “Jackie Z”?

    • Reflex - Jul 31, 2013 at 7:19 PM

      Far more competent than his predecessor. I still have not many really bad moves from him, and a lot of the moves he has made are very good. Plus their farm system is starting to routinely churn out quality major leaguers. Nick Franklin and Brad Miller this year, and the pitching crop is about to arrive….

  14. kcrobert10 - Jul 31, 2013 at 7:07 PM

    Total agree with the take on the royals. All we got was a Frenchy part to and we gave up a prospect for him. I need a drink at least the chiefs are in training camp oh wait….

  15. scotttheskeptic - Jul 31, 2013 at 7:10 PM

    Can’t help but wonder if the waiver wire claims pick up this year.

  16. Stiller43 - Jul 31, 2013 at 7:51 PM

    The cards are winners because the reds/buccos didnt pick up anyone (just like the cards didnt)?

    Shouldnt the buccos and/or reds also be winners for the same reason then?

    The pirates have outpaced the cards thus far, missing mcdonald (who sucks now anyway), wandy, burnett, liriano (briefly), and using jonathan freakin sanchez for a month…

    They can be the best team on paper all they want, the pirates have been the best team in baseball (record wise) through the first 4 months.

    Also, not a huge sample size, but the pirates are 6-2 vs the cards…only two losses came with jonathan sanchez and james mcdonald starting.

    We’ll see here shortly how the pirates close the season, but i love their chances to at least get a WC spot, and perhaps even a playoff win.

    • umrguy42 - Aug 1, 2013 at 8:57 AM

      Even though I’m a Cards fan, I have to agree, calling them “winners” is a bit silly. (Although at least they didn’t make some of these moves I’ve read rumors of in the last week or two here, especially the SS ones.)

      Their (recent at least) record against the Braves and Pirates, and a couple other playoff-bound/likely teams is what worries me.

    • stlouis1baseball - Aug 1, 2013 at 12:03 PM

      100% on point Stiller. You guys are certainly for real (have been all year). That 6 – 2 record against the Cardinals might be a small sample size…but it shouldn’t be dismissed either. Top to bottom you guys hit. And your Pitching has held up nicely. Should shape up to be a battle from here on out (unless you guys pull away of course).

  17. ddmcd1974 - Jul 31, 2013 at 8:00 PM

    This could be the worst post ever written considering the O’s mAde more deals than most teams and they were left out for teams that did NOT make deals. How stupid.

  18. Francisco (FC) - Jul 31, 2013 at 8:05 PM

    What are you talking about? The Phillies are winners just by virtue of the fact that Amaro wasn’t allowed to execute a trade. I wouldn’t trust this guy to rebuild or retool.

  19. joerymi - Jul 31, 2013 at 8:33 PM

    I love how we have to pretend that the Red Sox got in a time machine and picked up the 2007/2008 Jake Peavy. Giving them applause for not sending a top prospect? Again…this is not 2007. No top prospect was ever on the table for Peavy.

    We also have to pretend that the Angels got the best of the A’s in a deal. You. Are. Funny.

  20. 13arod - Jul 31, 2013 at 8:36 PM

    Losers are going to be boston and winners are the tigers and rays

  21. jonirocit - Aug 1, 2013 at 1:46 AM

    I love how we declare losers on teams who don’t make a move . Like in the Giants case .. Javier Lopez is the best lefty specialist in baseball and teams that needed him wouldn’t part with a top prospect so it’s the giants fault? Prospects are a gamble so if you have a sure thing like Lopez or even pence that want to remain a Giant and you can’t get a sure thing in return then why not hang on to them . In the case of lincecum you would never get value back and he is owed a ton of money this year so your stuck with him and just hope he gives you a home town deal for stealing cash the last two years . If they fail to sign you get comp pick and you get to choose the players instead of getting someone else cast off. Detroit , and the reds I think are the issue they should have went hard after guys like romo or Lopez ..heck Detroit should have sent Avisal Garica to Sf for Romo and a SS and I’m sure the reds could have sent a top 3 prospect for the best lefty out there. Sometime trading top talent back fires like the wheeler deal but if you don’t go for it you won’t win.

  22. takemytalentstosoutheuclid - Aug 1, 2013 at 10:52 AM

    So you are placing the Indians in he loser column because there was “a rumor that they were going for a big time starter”? Hilarious. Their rotation has been carrying this club all month. That’s the last thing they need, and the last thing anybody in the aforementioned fanbase expected. A better lefty reliever would have been nice, or a right handed hitter / 3B, but to place them in a the losers column because they didn’t actually do what the media / bloggers had them rumored to be doing?? Laughable..

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