Thursday, July 29, 2010

Necessity lead negotiator as trade deadline looms

100 games into the marathon that is a Major League Baseball season, most teams have a firm grip on the reality of their prospects to continue play into the post season and now you’re beginning to see who solidifying their position as a contender and who is desperately trying to become one.

The NL Central-leading St. Louis Cardinals made a three-team trade Saturday, getting pitcher Jake Westbrook from Cleveland and sending outfielder Ryan Ludwick to NL West-leading San Diego.
The New York Yankees have completed their trade to acquire Lance Berkman from the Houston Astros.

The World Series champions sent reliever Mark Melancon and minor league infielder Jimmy Paredes to Houston for the former All-Star first baseman, who will become the Yankees' designated hitter. Houston will pay part of what Berkman is owed.On Friday, New York obtained outfielder Austin Kearns from Cleveland for a player to be named or cash.

Roy Oswalt officially has accepted his proposed trade to the Philadelphia Phillies. This was the second straight year the Phillies made a major trade for a pitcher in the days leading up to the July 31 deadline. Last season, they got Cliff Lee and he boosted them to another NL pennant -- Lee was then sent to Seattle in a separate deal on the same day the Phillies acquired Halladay.

Despite putting together a 7-3 run since the break, the Phillies still find themselves 3.5 back of the Braves for the Central crown and two back in the WC race. Falling to seventh in the National League in overall pitching Philly needs to land one more major arm to make their staff ‘playoff worthy’The Phillies and Astros have intensified talks in the last 24 hours about a deal that would send Roy Oswalt to Philadelphia, sources said. But major financial obstacles remain that could still stand in the way of this trade being completed before Saturday's trading deadline. Officials of multiple teams that have been speaking with the two clubs said Wednesday they believed the Phillies and Astros were close enough to agreeing on the players who would go to Houston that the players were no longer viewed as a major obstacle. The Astros would receive pitcher J.A. Happ, plus prospects. But the teams were said to be "not in total agreement" yet on the prospects.

The Dodgers fall under the ‘must trade’ category as they’ve watched their season prospects quickly diminish after the loss of Manny Ramirez. Just a month ago they were 2 games out of first in the NL West and 3 games up on the Wild Card and now they find themselves 6 back in the West, 3.5 games out of the WC and facing the toughest schedule in MLB. LA acquired veteran outfielder Scott Podsednik from the Kansas City Royals on Wednesday, a move designed to shore up their outfield at a time when Manny Ramirez and backup outfielder Reed Johnson are on the disabled list with no definitive indication of when either of them will be back. To get Podsednik, the Dodgers sent their top catching prospect, Lucas May, to the Royals, along with low Class A pitcher Elisaul Pimentel.

The banged-up Detroit Tigers are going to become a factor they’ll need to start making up some ground on the Sox and Twins, who unfortunately are two of the hottest teams in baseball. Detroit acquired third baseman Jhonny Peralta from the Cleveland Indians on Wednesday for minor league left-hander Giovanni Soto. Detroit also received cash considerations in the trade. Peralta will fill-in for Brandon Inge, the Tigers' injured third baseman. Who else needs to make some moves prior to the deadline? Let us know here and in any of the quick links.

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