Bye Bye Manny

The Major League Baseball Trade Deadline seemed to have passed at 4 pm yesterday without any blockbuster deals, but then all of a sudden, reports started coming in that Red Sox slugger Manny Ramirez had been traded to the Dodgers in a six-player deal. So much for no blockbuster deals. While Manny goes to Los Angeles, the Dodgers shipped out prospects Andy LaRoche and Bryan Morris and the Sox sent Craig Hansen and Brandon Moss to Pittsburgh. In return for all that, the Red Sox got left fielder Jason Bay from Pittsburgh. So that’s the trade, but what does it all mean?

It means the Dodgers just became the favorite in the NL West. It means the Red Sox finally unloaded Ramirez, though it took two prospects and $7 million dollars for any trade to work. It means the Pirates got four valuable prospects and shed salary at the same time. It means everyone wins, though some more than others. Let’s begin with the Sox, who just traded one of the best players in baseball. How can this deal possibly make them better? Continue reading “Bye Bye Manny”

Angels Get Mightier

Photo: ESPN

Yesterday the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim acquired star first baseman Mark Teixeira from the Atlanta Braves for first baseman Casey Kotchman and a minor leaguer. Already possessing the best record in the major leagues, the Angels just got a whole lot better. Their starting pitching is dominant. Ervin Santana, Joe Saunders, and John Lackey may be the best starting pitcher combination in baseball with Jered Weaver and Jon Garland. None of those five starters have an ERA above 4.30, giving the Angels a chance to win every game.

Their bullpen is lights-out. Closer Francisco Rodriguez is on pace to shatter Bobby Thigpen’s record of 57 saves in one season. Relievers Jose Arredondo and Scott Shields both have ERAs of 3.00 or below. Their team ERA is 3.88 and team WHIP is 1.29. The pitching staff is nothing less than superb and it is built for a long run in the postseason. Since only three starters are needed during the playoffs, at least one of Santana, Saunders, and Lackey would be able to pitch in every game Continue reading “Angels Get Mightier”

MLB Trading Deadline

Photo: ESPN

The Major League Baseball Trade Deadline is just two days away and speculation about who is going to be traded to where has taken main stage across the sport. There have already been a couple of minor trades as well as two big ones (C.C. Sabathia and Rich Harden). Harden and Sabathia have already paid huge dividends for the Cubs and Brewers respectively. Though winless in the NL, Harden has struck out 30 batters in 17 1/3 innings, possessing a 1.04ERA. Sabathia is 4-0 with three complete games and a 1.82 ERA. Those were two of the biggest names on the market and the fact that they have already been traded may mean that this year’s Trading Deadline may be uneventful, but anything could happen. Here is a look at a couple of interesting players:

Mark Teixeira: Look who is back on the market. The hottest free agent right now, Teixeira finds himself in an identical situation as last year when he was traded from the Texas Rangers to the Atlanta Braves. This time the Braves are shopping him around. The Diamondbacks seem to be the strongest pursuer of Teixeira, but there are plenty of other offers. The Braves are looking for a big-league bat and a strong pitching prospect for their star first baseman, whose stats speak for themselves (.280 avg, 20 hr, 78 rbi). Arizona is also joined by the Angels, Red Sox, and Rays in pursuit of Teixeira. I think the Braves will move Teixeira and that the offer by the D’backs will trump all other offers Atlanta will receive. Continue reading “MLB Trading Deadline”