The non-waiver trade deadline has come and gone, and, although the Chicago Cubs sat inexplicably on their hands, other teams took the bull by the horns.
- The Astros continued their quest to ensure the number one pick in the 2012 draft by sending Michael Bourn to the Braves for Jordan Schafer and three pitching prospects. Reports had the Braves coming to the Cubs about Marlon Byrd when talks with the Astros had stalled. The Cubs refused, and the Braves pulled the trigger on Bourn.
- The Padres sent top set-up man Mike Adams to the Rangers for two very, very good AA pitching prospects. That trade came after the Rangers approached the Cubs about Carlos Marmol, and the Cubs refused (sensing a theme?). You may not believe it, and you may not want to hear it, but a source suggests the Cubs could have netted a very similar return for Marmol. The dirt beneath my foot is taking a pounding.
- The Pirates picked up Ryan Ludwick for a PTBNL. With Derrek Lee in the fold, and the sad sack story, is it ok to root for them down the stretch? I’d much rather see them take the Central than the Cardinals or Brewers. Of course, if the Pirates make the playoffs, Cubs management will have all the more fodder for their cockamamy “see! a team can go from terrible to playoffs in one year with a tinker or two!” theory.
- The Red Sox had a deal for Rich Harden fall through because of Harden’s medical reports, so they instead traded for… Erik Bedard? For realsies?
- The Diamondbacks picked up reliever Brad Ziegler from the A’s for a couple prospects, including first baseman Brandon Allen (a 25-year-old who has torn up AAA, but hasn’t quite made it happen in the bigs). What, John Grabow not good enough for you? Oh, you’re right. He’s not.
- On the balance, it was a relatively quiet trade deadline, which comports with suggestions that teams were holding onto prospects more than ever this year. The question is why? Is it economy-driven? Too many teams still in the race? Too many teams content with their current makeup?