Ranking the 5 Greatest April Trades in MLB History

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Ranking the 5 Greatest April Trades in MLB History
Doug Pensinger/Getty Images
Brandon Phillips was drafted by the Montreal Expos in 1999 before being traded to Cleveland in 2002.

How much of an impact do early season trades make? They occur infrequently and usually do not involve big-name players.

The MLB trend is to anticipate the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline and strike a deal on or before that date. It's one of the most exciting days during the baseball season, as contending teams look to land a player for their playoff push while cellar dwellers dump stars for prospects.

So why aren't there any titillating transactions in April? 

For one, most teams craft their rosters in the offseason, and it may take more than a few weeks in April to step into the rhythm of success. Also, with such a small sample size of games, determining the problem that a trade would solve is not always possible.

Plus, those non-contending teams who could provide a worthy veteran or power bat are not willing to raise the white flag on a young season, succumbing to more dominate teams and crippling the fan base.

All that said, here are the five greatest, if not the smartest, April trades of all time.

(H/T to articles written by Bleacher Report's Doug Mead, Joel Reuter and Ely Sussman)

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