Last week, I previewed what to expect the second half of the Major League Baseball season. However, one thing that could throw a wrinkle into any second half prediction is the MLB trade deadline.
The trade deadline is a perfect time for a team behind in their division race to make a move to put themselves in a position to gain ground in the second half. Look at the Toronto Blue Jays. They made a deal for arguably one of, if not the best shortstops in all of baseball in Troy Tulowitzki. An already dangerous Blue Jays lineup got even more dangerous with the acquisition of Tulowitzki. The Blue Jays may need to make a couple more moves to track down the first place Yankees in the American League East, but Tulowitzki is a great start, and it shows the Toronto fan base that the team is serious about winning.
Cole Hamels is on the move from the Philadelphia Phillies just days after throwing a no hitter against the Chicago Cubs. Hamels will now find his home in Texas, as the Texas Rangers traded Matt Harrison and five minor league prospects for the ace left-hander. Hamels gives the Rangers the top of the rotation starter whom they need in order to contend. If you look at their lineup, they have some really good players who include Prince Fielder and Adrian Beltre. They need consistent performance out of their pitching rotation to contend for years to come, and I feel like this is what Hamels could provide.
The Washington Nationals bolstered the back end of their bullpen with the acquisition of Jonathan Papelbon. In order to make a deep run in October, teams need a deep bullpen. A perfect example of this is the Kansas City Royals, who rode their dominant bullpen all the way to the World Series last season. The Nationals already have Drew Storen to pitch late in ball games, but adding Papelbon provides the Nationals with a closer who has experience closing out ball games in the World Series.
At the time of this writing, names like David Price, Yoenis Cespedes, Carlos Gonzalez, and Jay Bruce are still being mentioned in potential trade talk. Several, if not all of them, may be moves by Friday’s deadline. Once the deadline passes, several teams may look completely different as they tackle the second half of the season. And as a fan, that is what you have to enjoy about the trade deadline. You never know what to expect, and it always keeps you on the edge of your seat.
Cody Crandall is an intern at the Jamestown Gazette. To read more of his insights, commentaries, and news about the world of sports and the Jamestown Jammers, visit www.jamestowngazette. com. The Jamestown Gazette is proud to present our county’s most creative and original writers for your enjoyment and enlightenment.