Posted: Thursday July 31, 2003 9:15 PM
Updated: Thursday July 31, 2003 9:15 PM
SI.com's Jacob Luft breaks down the major trades made by the 4 p.m. deadline Thursday. Meanwhile, SI.com's Tom Verducci takes a closer look at how the Red Sox and Yankees have loaded up for a promising pennant race.
Paying for Ponson
Sidney Ponson, RHP
Damian Moss, LHP
Kurt Ainsworth, RHP
Ryan Hannaman, LHP
Edge: Both Why: The Giants get the best pitcher on the market in Ponson, who is having a breakout year, but they paid a heavy price for it. Damian Moss and Kurt Ainsworth (injured) will fill spots in the Baltimore rotation next year, and the 21-year-old Hannaman has an electric arm. That's the perfect salve for Baltimore's talent-poor system.
Edge: Yankees Why: Aaron Boone is already an All-Star third baseman, and if his brother's career arc is any indication, watch out. This deal patches up the club's hot corner problem (Drew Henson) at least through next year. Claussen instantly becomes the best pitcher in the Reds' system, which is deep at third base.
Edge: Pirates Why: Much like Kenny Lofton, Jeff Suppan was picked up from the scrap heap in the offseason and now the Pirates are cashing him in. Sanchez is a major league-ready infielder who instantly becomes one of the club's best hitters. On the other hand, the Red Sox had little use for Sanchez but needed to shore up its starting rotation. For all intents and purposes, lefty reliever Scott Sauerbeck is part of this trade as well, so Boston did very well.
Edge: Yankees Why: Bubba Crosby can step right in as the latest in the long line of overhyped New York prospects. He undoubtedly will be dealt at this time next year when the Yankees go shopping for the stretch run again. Robin Ventura is in steep decline, but any hitting he does for the slappy Dodgers will be a huge lift.
Edge: Athletics Why: This is why Billy Beane's boys are a perennial juggernaut in the second half. The Moneyball GM knows how to add the right pieces at the right time. Guillen is having an amazing season and will be a huge upgrade to a sagging outfield. The Reds need any pitching they can get, and they weren't going to be able to keep Guillen after this year anyway.
Edge: Diamondbacks Why: Raul Mondesi's act can get old rather quickly, as it did in New York, but he is still a dangerous bat when properly motivated. And, like the Dodgers, the D'backs need any hitting they can get. Dave Dellucci, meanwhile, is a nice addition to the bench.
Edge: Red Sox Why: The late innings just got a lot easier for Boston. Williamson, the former NL Rookie of the Year, is a wonderful strikeout pitcher (53 Ks in 42 1/3 IP) who has been used effectively as a setup man and closer in the past. Phillip Dumatrait is a former first-round pick and a legit prospect.