MLB Division Races and the Trade Deadline
Every year at the end of July, teams across MLB are looking to position themselves for the last stretch of season with that last piece or the basement dwellers are always looking to dump salary. This year, it seemed like outside of the Dodgers and Phillies, the only major players were the first place teams. No team really greatly improved that was outside of 5 games from a playoff berth even though there is still enough time.
The Yanks put together a series of moves that will just continue to put them ahead of everyone else. As a Nationer, the addition of Berkman alone scares me. The line-up is deadly, and the role players off the bench fit even better. However, pitching and defense are always the keys in the playoffs and their failure to find a 4th or 5th starter for the time being while Pettitte is out will be glaring until the postseason. However, get CC, Andy Dandy, and whoever you want to put in (Hughes or Burnett) and you're looking at a deadly 5 game series especially with that offense.
The Rays did nothing. Good move? We will see with waivers. Really surprising to be honest.
The Nation did little to nothing. Good move? Yup. The machine, Jacoby, a healthy Victor, and Beckett are on the way. Don't mention the fact Epstein got his full time love affair settled with Saltalamacchia and the catcher of the future. He made a move just to make a move in essence. The AL East will be a hot topic for August and September into October, but the race that is getting interesting is the NL West.
San Diego has been atop most major pitching categories, but have been falling back down to earth as of late. Real surprising that Ludwick was their only serious pickup with the team struggling to make contact. I'd lump San Fran in the same category as their offense is nothing to write home about either.
All in all, the summer brings about important series for division, wild card, and spoilers. Teams are bringing up the youngins looking towards next year. Always nice to just sit down and watch a weekend series, that's for sure.
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