Writers from around the Tribune Co. discuss which Major League Baseball teams improved most and didn’t do enough before Tuesday’s trade deadline. Check back throughout the day for more responses and feel free to join the conversation with a comment of your own.
Lance Pugmire, Los Angeles Times
While the Angels landing of Cy Young Award winner Zack Greinke filled a much-needed gap in their rich effort to win the American League West, the Dodgers stand as the trade-deadline winner by plugging so many holes.
In addition to their acquisition last week of five-tool infielder Hanley Ramirez, Los Angeles added a proven big-league closer in Brandon League to help protect late leads and proven October pressure player Shane Victorino to further fuel the batting order.
Consolation prizes go to Texas for getting pitchers Ryan Dempster and Paul Maholm, outfielder Reed Johnson and catcher Geovany Soto, and Milwaukee for landing key prospects Jean Segura and Ariel Pena in the Greinke swap, but the team most likely to lean on the new players contributing something meaningful during the pennant push now resides at Dodger Stadium.
Stephen Miller, Allentown Morning Call
No team made a better series of moves to win now than the Dodgers. In acquiring Hanley Ramirez from the Marlins last week and Shane Victorino from the Phillies on Tuesday, they boosted spots in their lineup that had produced below the league average. Brandon League could also give their bullpen help, though he has struggled with his command this season.
The cash-strapped A’s, meanwhile, did nothing to improve an offense that began Tuesday ranked last in the American League in runs scored with 414. Oakland has the stingiest pitching staff in the AL, but it’s going to need it to continue dominating because of the team’s offensive shortcomings.
David Selig, Baltimore Sun
You have to wait and see how some of these prospects develop before truly assessing who won and lost at the deadline, but it’s clear the Dodgers got better over the last week.
Hanley Ramirez and Shane Victorino give a significant boost to an offense that badly needed one. And while reliever Brandon League has struggled a bit, he’ll give L.A. another big arm in its bullpen.
San Francisco was also active, which made it that much more important for the Dodgers to do what they did as they try to turn the page from the McCourt era with a pennant chase.
The Nationals are the team that probably didn’t do enough. If you’re planning to shut down your ace pitcher before the end of the season, don’t you need to go after somebody to defray that loss?