All throughout the land, the angry, vibrant, and at times, classless citizens of Philadelphia were hungry for a victory to match that of yesteryear. The pressure was on, and Ruben feared his inexperience would show.
“I’ve got to make a deal for a pitcher before the trade deadline,” he thought. “I’ve just got to!”
It was true. The Phillies needed another dragon-slayer, if they hoped to be a playoff contender. As rumors came in from other kingdoms, Ruben had some decisions to make.
He walked through the land, pointing a questioning finger at several of the kingdom’s top baseball prospects.
“But who will I trade for a starter?” he wondered.
“Not me,” said J.A. Happ.
“Not me!” cried Kyle Drabek, all the way from Lehigh Valley.
Dominic Brown and Michael Taylor had also been squirreled away for safe keeping.
Who, then? Who would go in our blockbuster trade?
Ruben was feeling ballsy, so he decided to trade for the King of Toronto. “How about some of our top young players?” he asked, his heart in his throat.
“Absolutely not,” the Toronto GM claimed, spitting in his face. “Get out of Canada.”
Ruben wandered back to his home, hands shoved in his pockets, kicking stones and “Aw, shucks”-ing all the way back. It was his big idea, and now it was gone.
“Wait a minute,” Ruben exclaimed. “Those Indians! They’ve got that Cy Young Award winner, who fears he’ll be trapped in Cleveland forever!” “But I must be cautious,” he continued.
“I could never give up all of our young prospects for the sake of a single playoff run.”
Toronto was off the table, and time was consistently scurrying away, like rats in the subway.
As the deadline loomed, Ruben penciled in a meeting with his backup plan.
The Indians arrived, and slammed their fists down on the table collectively.
“We’ll send Lee your way, Ruben, but you’ve got to give us Happ or Drabek, and a collection of other young’uns.”
Ruben began to sweat profusely and remembered the people’s demand for a future of victorious years, not just the season at hand.
He gulped visibly and gave his response:
“Okay,” the Indians replied. “You can have him anyway.”
Ruben sent some minor-leaguers his city wouldn’t miss to Cleveland in exchange for the pitcher, and also an outfielder who proved to be useful when Shane Victorino happened to damage himself.
As other contenders from neighboring cities scrambled to make last-minute trades, Ruben sat back in his chair, comfortable with his decision.
He had kept Happ, he had kept Drabek, and still managed to snare the extremely talented Lee.
It was the fairy-tale ending he’d hoped for. His job was safe for a bit longer.
Merry Trade Deadline, everybody.
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