Most seasons, talk surrounding the MLB trade deadline is just that.
However, this year, the deadline was full of action. Top title contenders hired elite mercenaries, while bottom-dwellers shed salary like it was going out of style.
Of course, this is sports, and whenever a trade or something similar occurs, there are generally some clear cut winners and losers. Here are a couple of each from the 2012 MLB trade deadline.
Winner: Los Angeles Angels
The Los Angels Angels are the big winners from the deadline. The team added superstar pitcher Zack Greinke to a rotation that was already pretty scary. Perhaps more importantly, the Angels kept Greinke away from AL West rivals the Texas Rangers.
Greinke is a former Cy Young winner (2009), and at just 28 years old, he still has plenty of elite-level pitching ahead of him. He was excellent in his first start with his new team, and as he re-acclimates himself with AL hitters, he should get even better.
The Angels are currently in third place in the division, but expect a late-season surge. If this team makes the playoffs, this is a squad that will be as deadly as any other. No other team will be able to boast a trio like Greinke, Jered Weaver and C.J. Wilson.
Loser: Cincinnati Reds
The Cincinnati Reds are currently sitting atop the NL Central. However, after failing to improve the lineup at the deadline, I'm expecting this team to be overtaken by the Pittsburgh Pirates.
The Reds' leadoff hitters have been absolutely terrible this season, combining to hit just .203, while posting an on-base percentage of .248.
Cincy had a chance to fix this problem by bringing in Shane Victorino, but instead allowed him to go to the Dodgers.
That is, a team that the Reds may be competing with for a wild-card spot in the final weeks of the season.
Cincinnati's patience may pay off, but for now, this team is one of the losers from the deadline.
Winner: Ryan Dempster
Ryan Dempster may have been comfortable in Chicago, but at 35 years old, I'm assuming he'd like to add to his meager postseason start total (one).
That sure as hell wasn't happening in the Windy City, where the last-place Cubs have been stinking it up as usual this season.
Nevertheless, Dempster will now certainly get a chance to shine in the postseason, as he joined the powerhouse Texas Rangers at the deadline.
Of course, while Dempster looks like a deadline winner now, he could be a loser by season's end. There are some real concerns about how he will fare in the American League, especially with his home games coming in a hitter's park.
As an impending free agent, a dip in numbers could lower his value this offseason.
Loser: Phillies Fans
It's hard to be too sympathetic towards Phillies fans in light of the team's recent success, but that team is going to be awful for the rest of the season.
I obviously understand Philly's thinking in dumping guys like Hunter Pence and Shane Victorino, but talk about a slap in the face to season-ticket holders. Despite entering every season with Yankee-like expectations, Phillies fans are now going to have to suffer through an Astros-like product.
If that doesn't qualify your team as a loser, I don't know what does.