Just as I was about to write that the trading deadline was going to pass us by with a slight whimper it decided to go out with a bang. A huge Los Angeles bang. Here is a rundown of the trades that have been made since we last met:
Florida Marlins receive: LHP Arthur Rhodes (2-1 2.86 ERA 26 K’s in 22 Innings)
Seattle Mariners receive: Minor League P Gaby Hernandez
The Marlins get help for their bullpen for a playoff run and the Mariners receive a prospect as they begin the long rebuilding process. A good move for both teams at this time.
Chicago White Sox receive: OF Ken Griffey Jr. (.245 Avg, 15 HR, 53 RBI)
Cincinnati Reds receive: P Nick Masset (1-0, 4.63 ERA)
2B Danny Richar (.230 Avg., 6 HR, 15 RBI)
Griffey waived his no-trade clause to head to the AL Central leading White Sox. But this is not the Griffey of the late 90s, and with a move back to center will this trade backfire on White Sox GM Kenny Williams? They could platoon Griffey with Nick Swisher in the field and Jim Thome at DH, but does this make for a crowded clubhouse and lineup card for manager Ozzie Guillen? The White Sox and Reds did agree to split the remainder of Griffey’s contract for this season, and his $4 million buyout for 2009 giving the White Sox the chance to dump Griffey at the season’s end if he does not pan out.
Adding Griffey does not make them all that much better than the Minnesota Twins who sit 1 1/2 games back of the White Sox in the division, or even the Detroit Tigers who are 6 games back. A new environment could help rekindle the fire in Griffey’s belly for the postseason and maybe even a World Series appearance, or he could be a 38 year-old over the hill player. This is not the make or break trade the White Sox needed.
Los Angeles Dodgers receive: OF Manny Ramirez (.299 Avg, 20 HR, 68 RBI)
Boston Red Sox receive: OF Jason Bay (.282, 22 HR, 64 RBI)
Pittsburgh Pirates receive: RHP Bryan Morris
RHP Craig Hansen
3B Andy LaRoche
OF Brandon Moss
This trade was supposed to involve the Florida Marlins, but something happened today and the Los Angeles Dodgers stepped right in. The Boston Red Sox obviously could not get equal value for Manny Ramirez, but they did get an All-Star and very capable hitter in Jason Bay.
The Pittsburgh Pirates once again unloaded a great player in exchange for some pretty good prospect. If they would start paying those prospects when they become great they might have a good team again in Pittsburgh.
Ramirez will make the Dodgers a better team and as they sit one game back of the NL West leading Arizona Diamondbacks they definitely should be in the playoff race. But the question is will Ramirez show up and contribute? Manager Joe Torre will have his hands full with Ramirez, but he worked with problem players and their egos for years in New York. Ramirez wanted out of Boston and he got his wish, and the Dodgers are a better team.
Bay may have the hardest job in baseball now. He has to come in and continue the offensive production that Ramirez was putting out. Of course he is a better defensive outfielder, and his numbers this season are very comparable to Ramirez’s, but the shoes are very big. If Bay can come in and continue to play like he has with the Pirates the Red Sox should not fall off and should continue to chase the Tampa Bay Rays for the AL East title.
Everyone in this trade is getting what they want. Ramirez is out of Boston, and the Dodgers got a slugger they wanted in Andruw Jones. The Red Sox get rid of a headache in Ramirez, and receive a All-Star in Jason Bay. The Pirates unload money and get good young players in return. All in all the trade of the day may have been the best trade for all involved.
We may see a trade or two trickle through as the night progresses. If they do I’ll post them. Also we may still see a move or two happen before the waiver deadline passes on August 31st.
– The Detroit Tigers placed beleaguered closer Todd Jones on the DL with a sore shoulder.