Every year, Major League Baseball delivers me the best birthday presents ever...blockbuster trades. You see, I have the extreme pleasure of being a baseball/fantasy baseball/Yankees fan whose birthday falls on July 30th...the eve of the Trade Deadline. And it looks like my presents are starting to roll in early this year.
The Francisco Rodriguez-to-Milwaukee trade on July 13th came a couple of weeks early, you know, like the card from your aunt or grandmother that includes a $5 bill, even though you're turning 40 and five dollars can barely buy you a foofoo, non-fat, mocha-choca latte you've come to love over the past few years of your life. Ok, I think I've said too much about that.
This trade did give fantasy baseball GMs plenty to talk about, too. What would K-Rod's role be with the Brewers and how would that effect John Axford's role as their current closer. Who would close for the Mets? Would it be the young fire-baller, Bobby Parnell or the gritty veteran, Jason Isringhausen? I'd say this kind of trade was just the sort of thing to get me excited for the weeks ahead.
Fast forward to July 27th and you've got the kind of present I'm talking about for a 40th birthday. It's like the wife just handed me the "emergency" credit card and told me to go to
Best Buy to by myself something pretty. And by pretty, I assume she meant something with the letters HDTV in it.
Edwin Jackson and Mark Teahen to the Toronto Blue Jays for Jason Frasor and Zach Stewart. Then the St. Louis Cardinals trade Colby Rasmus, Trever Miller, Brian Tallet and P.J. Walters to the Toronto Blue Jays for the aforementioned Edwin Jackson, Octavio Dotel, Marc Rzepczynski and Corey Patterson. I haven't seen that kind of hot, three-way action since the last time I unexpectedly got a free preview weekend of Cinemax! My computer Twitter'ed all over itself. The fantasy baseball repercussions of trades of this magnitude are still being felt across the airwaves of talk radio and in 140-characters-or-less blurbs.
And the day wasn't even done delivering me presents, yet. News of the Carlos Beltran-to-SF Giants-for-prospect(s) trade had everyone on Twitter speculating for hours until it was announced the uber-prospect was Zack Wheeler. Quick! Get me some Gatorade, caffeine and oysters. This could be a long and exciting day.
Late news broke of a Wil Nieves-to Atlanta trade as a result of the Braves having to put All-Star catcher Brian McCann on the DL. Come on. Really? This kind of trade is the equivalent of receiving a birthday card from your boss. You both know he didn't want to but his secretary made him do it anyway. Thanks for nothing, boss man. At least include a gift card next year.
Thursday, July 28th, got us back into the spirit of gift giving for my birthday with a Kosuke Fukudome-to-Cleveland trade. There could be some positive benefits to this deal for Fukudome (.282 BA vs RHP) in deeper, mixed leagues and AL-only ones. I won't be sending a thank you card for this trade, though. I deserve better.
So here we sit, heading into what's expected to be a weekend filled with buyers buying, sellers selling and some teams leaving their fans wondering what the future holds for their home teams. As a life-long New York Yankees fan, I know there's a present or two headed my way. The only question is, "What's in the box?"