Mark Gray breaks down the significance of Josh Bell’s presence within the Juan Soto trade.
Da Gambler pushes back against the notion that the American League is MLB’s toughest league top to bottom.
The MLB Trade deadline expired in dramatic fashion this Friday, and we saw several MLBbros from both the Bigs and the Minors move throughout the day. Now that the dust has settled, here are a few transactions that I think will shape the second half of the season.
Blue Jays and Athletics Load Up for Wild Card Push
With the MLB ditching the Covid playoff format that saw 16 teams make the playoffs, this year’s Wild Card race will be a brawl compared to last year’s glorified participation contest.
With that in mind, we saw each AL Wild Card contender make some serious moves.
The Oakland A’s acquired our bro Josh Harrison, who may not garner as many clicks as other big names, but true to Oakland A’s history, Harrison’s the numbers check out with the best.
As of Saturday afternoon, Harrison had a higher on base percentatge (.366) than newly acquired Yankee Anthony Rizzo (.350) and only trails in OPS by .007 (.800 to Rizzo’s .807).
Meanwhile, the Toronto Blue Jays gave up a pair of young MLBbros for Minnesota Twins ace Jose Berrios.
The Jays sent highly-touted prospects SS/OF Austin Martin and RHP Simeon Woods-Richards back to the Twins, a move that shows the Jays think they can leapfrog the Yankees and Rays to make some noise this year.
White Sox Get Reinforcements
Tim Anderson and the Chicago White Sox have October in their sights.
The White Sox acquired second basemen Cesar Hernandez from Cleveland and reliever Ryan Tepera from the crosstown Cubs on Thursday, filling the hole at second left by the season-ending injury to Nick Madrigal and shoring up their bullpen.
This would have been a win for most teams, but the Sox weren’t finished. With only a few hours left before the deadline ended, the White Sox flipped the injured Madrigal across town to acquire closer Craig Kimbrel, pairing him with Liam Hendriks in what is easily the best back-end in baseball.
Now, after battling injuries all season, the White Sox look like a team with scary depth headed into the home stretch. MLBbro’s Billy Hamilton and Brian Goodwin will transition to utility roles as the team gets its stars back, which will make this team tough to beat come postseason.
Mets Look to Lock Down Division
My good brother Kev in Morre just spoke about the heavy lifting Dominic Smith will have to do down the stretch for the Mets, but after Friday’s deadline, he won’t have to do it alone.
The Mets acquired slugging shortstop Javier Baez from the Chicago Cubs in exchange for outfield prospect Pete Crow-Armstrong.
The trade gives New York a tremendous power hitter (who’s also struck out 131 times) and unites Baez with his best friend, Francisco Lindor.
Javy has already agreed to shift to second base when Lindor returns from an oblique strain, setting the Mets up nicely for a stretch run.
MLBbros Taijuan Walker and Marcus Stroman will surely appreciate the extra pop in the lineup, and with recent news of a setback to Jacob deGrom, they will certainly need it.
Dodgers Keep Printing Money
“You come at the king, you best not miss.”
Mookie and the Dodgers have done it again. As the hype began to swirl around their little bros down in San Diego, the defending world champions reminded the baseball world that there’s really levels to this.
The Dodgers acquired three-time Cy Young winner Max Scherzer and All-Star shortstop Trae Turner in exchange for four top prospects, including one young MLB bro I told you to put on your radar.
23-year old hurler Josiah Gray was a key part of the deal, as he recently made his major league debut and is more MLB ready than the other prospects.
This move out of LA should eliminate a lot of pressure for early success for Gray, which could help the young pitcher’s development.
As for Mookie and the Dodgers, anything less than a repeat could be seen as a failure, but this of course is baseball and nothing is written in stone.