A number of big trades went down before the 2012 MLB trade deadline as big names went from struggling teams to teams that are in contention in the playoff races.
These deals could help shape the results that we see throughout the rest of the season. There were certainly a number of winners and losers from the 2012 MLB trade deadline.
The following analysis is for the biggest deals that went down on July 31st.
Los Angeles Dodgers
According to the Associated Press via ESPN, the Dodgers acquired Shane Victorino on Tuesday.
After acquiring Hanley Ramirez and Randy Choate, the Los Angeles Dodgers went out to make one more move to improve their team prior to the 2012 MLB trade deadline.
The Dodgers went out and traded for Shane Victorino. While he is not the player that he was a few years ago, Victorino is still an outstanding player that should have a huge impact for them.
In exchange for Victorino, the Phillies acquired Josh Lindblom and Ethan Martin.
Philadelphia was able to get a pretty good return for free agent-to-be Shane Victorino. They brought in Josh Lindblom, who should immediately improve their bullpen and Ethan Martin, would could find himself in the middle of the Phillies rotation in a year or two.
Adding Victorino could be a huge addition for the Dodgers, and he may be the piece they needed to reach the World Series this year.
There was no benefit to the Phillies holding on to Victorino since they are out of contention this season. Philadelphia did a good job of getting players that could help them both now and in the future.
San Francisco Giants
According to Jerry Crasnick of ESPN, the Giants acquired Hunter Pence.
The San Francisco Giants needed to make a move to counter all of the deals that the Los Angeles Dodgers made. To try and counter these moves, the Giants acquired Hunter Pence from the Philadelphia Phillies.
In exchange for Pence, the Phillies acquired Tommy Joseph, Nate Schierholtz and Seth Rosin.
The center piece of the deal for the Philadelphia Phillies has to be Tommy Joseph. He was the third best prospect in the Giants system coming into the season according to John Sickels of Minor League Ball.
Schierholtz has had limited success in the Giants outfield and should end up serving as a fourth outfielder during most of his tenure with the Phillies. Rosin is an intriguing prospect who could become a solid reliever for the Phillies within a few years.
San Francisco could have panicked after all of the moves that the Dodgers made and overpaid for an impact bat. Instead, they got a player that can help them both this season and next for a reasonable package of prospects.
Philadelphia is going to be in a bit of a rebuilding mode, and they are hoping that they can contend again next season. This may not be the case considering the fact that these prospects should not be able to help next season.
According to Richard Durrett of ESPNDallas.com, the Rangers acquired Ryan Dempster.
While Dempster is not the big-name starter that the Texas Rangers were hoping to acquire at the trade deadline this season, he will bolster their starting rotation.
The Rangers knew that they had to make a move, and they went out and traded for the best pitcher that was dealt on deadline day.
In exchange for Dempster, the Cubs acquired Christian Villanueva and Kyle Hendricks.
The Chicago Cubs have a good third-base prospect in Triple-A, Josh Vitters, that could be their starter next season. He has had a few poor seasons in the past, but he has picked things up this year.
As for Kyle Hendricks, he has put up good numbers this season in High-A for the Rangers, but he is not an elite prospect. He has a 2.82 ERA this year in 20 starts.
The Rangers are looking to get back to the World Series for the third straight season, and with all of the injuries to their starting rotation, they needed to trade for a starter. Dempster is a good fit for them, but he is not the ace that they were looking for.
While Villanueva is a very good prospect and was considered to be the 100th best prospect by Baseball America, he is still a long way away from the majors. Hendricks could become a back-end of the rotation starter.
According to Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com, the Reds acquired Jonathan Broxton.
The Cincinnati Reds already had one of the best bullpens in the major leagues, and they made a deal to make it even better when they picked up Jonathan Broxton.
Having a good bullpen is tremendously important in the postseason, so it is easy to see why the Reds made this move.
Kansas City Royals
In exchange for Broxton, the Royals acquired Donnie Joseph and J.C. Sulbaran.
Donnie Joseph has put up outstanding numbers in the Reds' minor league system this year, and he is very close to contributing at the major league level. He could be in the Kansas City Royals' bullpen fairly soon.
J.C. Sulbaran was considered to be the 12th best prospect in the Reds system according to John Sickels of Minor League Ball. While he has struggled a bit this season, Sulbaran still has a ton of potential.
Cincinnati made a move that will help them this season, but they did give up a lot. Broxton will be the setup man for Aroldis Chapman this year, and almost every lead the Reds take into the eight inning should be safe.
Kansas City is planning on contending in a year or two, and picking up prospects that are close to the majors for a soon-to-be free agent was a good move. The Royals did a good job of continuing to build for their future with this trade.
According to the Associated Press via ESPN, the Pirates acquired Travis Snider.
One of the best surprises of the season has been the Pittsburgh Pirates. They are in a great position to reach the playoffs this year, and they wanted to improve their outfield.
Travis Snider has been dominant in the minors for the Toronto Blue Jays, but he has never put it all together in the majors. Snider has a lot of potential and should help the Pirates this season.
Toronto Blue Jays
In exchange for Snider, the Blue Jays acquired Brad Lincoln.
Lincoln has been a key part of the Pirates bullpen this season, and he is a big addition for the Toronto Blue Jays.
Toronto still has a chance to make the playoffs this season, but if they do not, Lincoln will still be able to help them for years to come.
This deal was a very fair one for both sides. The Pirates brought in a player that could be a major impact bat in their lineup. Snider will get the chance to play everyday, and the change of scenery could be exactly what he needs to succeed.
Lincoln helps improve the Blue Jays bullpen, and he should help the Blue Jays hold on to more leads. He could serve as the team's setup man for a long time.