Yankees, Phillies Among MLB Teams Making Big Moves Thursday

Tony BishopCorrespondent IJuly 17, 2008

Thursday's league-wide day off wasn't a boring one for those paying attention.

The New York Yankees got a much needed bat in Richie Sexson for Jim Edmonds type numbers.  For less than $400,000 the Yankees get the recently released former Mariner. 

He was one of the first big contracts given out by Seattle a few years ago, and never really felt at home.  His numbers have been falling and his haters have been getting louder in the past year or so. 

It's not 100% official, but I think this is a nice pickup, especially since this contract for the Yankees is like me buying a new car for five bucks. 

I do not, however, think that it gets them into the playoffs.  The Yankees need to get healthier.. well.. everywhere, and I feel like they need another big pitcher before they will be much of a long-term threat.

Thousands of miles southwest of New York, a familiar face returns to the desert.  Tony Clark comes back to Arizona after what was only a few months away from his old teammates in San Diego. 

Traded back to the Diamondbacks, who desperately need that veteran bat to come off the bench, the Padres will receive an excellent young pitcher (Evan Scribner).

Although this may help solidify Arizona's playoff chances in the ridiculously pathetic NL West, there's one trade today that I think should be talked about on the same level as Rich Harden and CC Sabathia.

What is Billy Bean doing in Oakland?  What does he know that we don't know?  We seem to ask these questions every year and he hasn't disappointed us this year either.

Two weeks ago we found out that he traded pitchers Rich Harden and Chad Gaudin to Chicago, and today he sent starter Joe Blanton to Philadelphia for three prospects.

Blanton has had a rough year this year but has always given up a few runs a game.  His major plus side, however, is that he can go seven or eight innings almost constantly. 

Philly has been begging for a guy like that to not only give them that solid third or fourth starter, but also to give the bullpen more rest.

To me, this trade stands out as one of those classic "new scenery" trades.  I see Blanton getting back to his form of last year, where he went 14-10 and will help the Phillies win the NL East.