To say that the most recent trade deadline was eventful is an understatement. Some teams sold, some bought, and a superteam got even stronger. However, here at the Intersection, we’re only focused on the Red Sox, Yankees, and Mets, and all three of ours teams had a busy deadline.
Though the Sox are currently in a bit of a skid that many fans are comparing to the end of the world, they only had two major needs: 3rd base, and 8th inning set up man.
They filled both of those needs.
Eduardo Nuñez was acquired early in the morning Saturday, and top prospect Rafael Devers was called up on Friday, and they’ve immediately turned third base from a major weakness to a strength. Both players have hit over .400 in their first week with the team, including Nuñez’s 2 home run night on Saturday and Devers’ 4-4 night on Monday. Nuñez and Devers have both played every day with Dustin Pedroia just placed on the DL, moving Nuñez to 2nd
Addison Reed was acquired on deadline day for 3 minor leaguers, none of whom were ranked in the Sox top 15 prospects. Reed is a rental, but has closer experience and will immediately give John Farrell a dependable 8th inning guy. A locked in 8-9 of Reed and Kimbrel plus the likes of Brandon Workman, Joe Kelly, Matt Barnes, and Heath Hembree makes for a very solid bullpen. If you add in the possible comeback of Carson Smith, that’s a bullpen that can win in the post season.
But the biggest acquisition is something that can’t be traded for at all. No deadline acquisition is going to get Mookie Betts back to his MVP self. No deadline acquisition is going to get Andrew Benintendi to be the rookie of the year we thought he would be. No deadline acquisition is going to heal Dustin Pedroia’s knee, Mitch Moreland’s toe, or Xander Boegarts’ hand. It’s up to the guys in the clubhouse now to get this team to the top of the AL like they have to the potential too. If the Sox can get all their potent bats going at the same time, they’re going to be dangerous, but no trade can give you that.
The Mets may have sold, but they’ve set themselves up well to be in contention once again next year.
Knowing they were going to trade Addison Reed, the Mets acquired AJ Ramos from the Marlins for their 9th and 22nd best prospects. With Jeurys Familia out, Ramos will close for the rest of the year, and has one more year of control and will likely set up next season.
For the guys they sold, they got near MLB ready prospects in return. Lucas Duda was shipped to the Rays for pitcher Drew Smith. Smith was Tampa’s 30th ranked prospect, but was just promoted to Triple-A with the Mets and has a 98 mph heater. He has a career ERA of 1.83 and K/9 of 10.1.
From the Red Sox, they received RHPs Gerson Bautista, Jamie Callahan, and Stephen Nogosek. Callahan is the best prospect of the 3 and most MLB ready. He had a 1.38 ERA in Double-A before being called up to Triple-A, where he’s struggled a with with a 4.03 ERA. He’s just 22, and an MLB bullpen seems likely for his future, possibly as soon as next season.
These deals also made room for top shortstop prospect Amed Rosario (#2 in baseball) and top first base prospect Dominic Smith (#41 in baseball) to be called up. The two will likely be up for the rest of the season in hopes of having them ready for full time duty next season.
Though the Mets may technically be sellers, but they’ve definitely shown that they plan to contend again next year, and will write this season off to injuries and just an off year.
The Yankees made the most noise out of any team nearing the deadline, as they pulled off four trades — three of which make an immediate impact to the active roster, and in a good way.
The Bombers got the ball rolling by receiving David Robertson, Tommy Kahnle, and Todd Frazier from the White Sox. In return, Blake Rutherford, Tyler Clippard, Ian Clarkin, and Tito Polo. The centerpiece that the ChiSox got is Rutherford, a center fielder that many in the Yankees organization felt could be the next Paul O’Neill. However, with the rise of Aaron Judge, Clint Frazier, and Aaron Hicks, other prospects like Dustin Fowler and Estevan Florial, and a potential Bryce Harper run, Rutherford was no longer needed. Clippard might very well be the worst pitcher in baseball, so the fact that the Yankees got anything more than a bag of chips for him is a win. Clarkin and Polo are also decent prospects, but not within the Yankees top 30, so they could be made expendable. In Frazier they got their new third baseman, and Robertson and Kahnle are here for the long run to fix a badly broken bullpen.
The Yankees then went out and got Jaime Garcia from the Twins for arms Zack Littell and Dietrich Enns. Littel and Enns could pan out, but were never thought of as long-term options for the Yanks. In Garcia, the Yankees get a dependable arm to shore up the back half of the rotation.
The Yankees also made a money trade with Baltimore, trading Yefry Ramirez to Baltimore for $1.5M in international signing money. Ramirez went 10-3 with a 3.41 ERA and was named an Eastern League All-Star for the Trenton Thunder, but it gave the Yankees some much-needed international money, and it cleared a 40-man roster spot for…
The cherry on top of the Yankees’ trade sundae, Sonny Gray.
Gray was acquired an hour before the deadline ended for Dustin Fowler, Jorge Mateo, and James Kaprelian. All three of these prospects have high ceilings but are damaged goods. Fowler and Kaprelian are injury liabilities, and Mateo has some character flaws. That being said, they’re all talented, and the fact that the Yankees had to give all three of them up for Gray speaks wonders for the kind of pitcher Gray is. It wasn’t too long ago he finished third in Cy Young voting. When he’s healthy, he’s dynamite, and has experience pitching in a big playoff game.
So there you have it, all of the trades that went down for our teams. The Yankees are the most polarizing options here, but the Sox and Mets may have made the smartest moves. Will any of them lead to a ring? Only time will tell…
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