The first shall be last.
Nothing exemplifies baseball's frustrating and fascinating non-waiver trading season better than the fact that it began and ended with the same trade:
The Peavy trade was the last and most surprising deal of another busy trading season. Over the past two months, there were 30 trades involving 75 players and 27 teams. Some of those clubs fared better than others, most notably the past five World Series champions, all of whom made trades to bolster their chances at another title run. It's just further proof that for those teams who make competing for a ring an annual mission, past triumphs have no bearing on the desire to succeed in the present. In other words, greed is good.
It should go without saying that it could take years to fully understand whether these deals worked or not. But in the immediate aftermath of a busy deadline day, here's a quick look at the very early winners and losers.
They addressed their most pressing need -- another bat -- while keeping their booming farm system largely intact. Their best young major league-ready pitchers (
The Phillies made just one deal but they made it a big one. When the Phillies acquired
The Tigers have been in first place since mid-May, but they've struggled to break free of the Twins and White Sox. With 20-year-old phenom
Lugo is a proven veteran, but the deadline is a success because of the other bat the Cardinals added.
Before the Peavy deal was announced, the White Sox were clearly in the losers category. Their only other deal was to get oft-injured
They're loaded with talented young players like
Their punchless offense ranks last or next-to-last in the NL in home runs, on-base percentage and slugging percentage. In other words, it needed severe help, and while the Giants did get Pirates All-Star second baseman
After seven trades that gutted their 25-man roster and landed nearly 20 -- 20! -- players in return, most of them young prospects, it's clear that the Pirates are starting over in a way they've never fully committed to throughout their 16 previous losing seasons. They were just six games out in the NL Central when the fire sale began, and now they've conceded any chance at competing not only this year but for the foreseeable future as well. The series of trades have given a boost to their farm system, especially in the pitching department, and there is talent on the way to Pittsburgh, most notably Alderson and
This last spot could just as easily have gone to any number of teams, but the Brewers are the choice because they pulled off the biggest deal of the year last season by getting