The San Francisco Giants made an important trade Monday, acquiring Kansas City Royals outfielder Melky Cabrera for left-handed pitcher Jonathan Sanchez. Cabrera is a true center fielder and lead-off hitter, which means he fills two key holes in the Giants' roster.
Sanchez, meanwhile, joins a Royals rotation that needed him. Their starters finished 10th in the American League in strikeouts in 2011. Sanchez adds a much-needed element of swing-and-miss to the mix, having struck out nearly a quarter of all the batters he has faced in the big leagues.
The implications of this deal, though, run much deeper than those. The Royals and Giants will be much different teams for having consummated this transaction, in a number of ways. Here is a full rundown of the trade's ripple effects.