Well, the trade deadline has passed. It's time to examine who got the short end of the stick and who came out smiling on July 31.
Boston Red Sox- To pick up talent like Jason Bay AND to get rid of the troublemaking Manny Ramirez? Theo Epstein is indeed a genius. This move should revitalize the Sox and ultimately put them ahead of the Yankees and Rays.
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim- How developed is baseball's West Coast bias that the Angels have the best record in MLB but nobody so much as burps in their direction? They changed that when they went after-- and got-- Mark Texiera from the Braves. The switch hitting masher will fit in perfectly at first base, repacing Casey Kotchman, part of the trade to Atlanta.
New York Yankees- I hate to say it, but... picking up Xavier Nady and Pudge Rodriguez, as well as ridding themselves of bullpen liability Kyle Farnsworth, were shrewd moves by the Steinbrenners, Jr. Kudos, sirs.
Milwaukee Brewers- The Brew Crew picked up a reigning Cy Young award winner. No way around it. If C.C. Sabathia can stay healthy through the stretch drive, they'll push for the NL Wild Card. If not... they'll be paying a helluva lot of cash to keep him around.
Chicago Cubs- Rich Harden. Ha. As if they needed to get any better. Conventional wisdom holds that the Cubs will inevitably crap out in the playoffs, but it's harder and harder-- or rather Harden and Harden-- to see it happening this year.
Tampa Bay Rays- To remain static while your division rivals do not is never a good idea. Just as it seemed they were going to jump on Jason Bay... *poof*. The deal never materialized. Which isn't what the Rays need. Now T-Bay is stuck without a right-handed masher for the postseason run. Well, maybe next year...
Oakland A's- They traded away, over the course of the season, a once mighty rotation. Barry Zito, Rich Harden, Dan Haren. Now, the deadline having come and gone, they never tried to reestablish their starters and have put Justin Duchscherer in front as their ace. Now, I've nothing against Moneyball, but perhaps the wallet could've been loosened a little? No? That's whay the A's have no postseason shot.
San Diego Padres- Only a blockbuster deal could've given this team any hope. Needless to say, it never happened. Hence, the Padres are still stuck with Greg Maddux and Brian Giles. They're in full-blown rebuilding mode come the offseason. (And if anyone had known Khalil Greene was going to go Kevin Brown on a storage locker, they might of shopped for a decent utilityman...)
Cleveland Indians- The good news is that Matt LaPorta, the prospect from the Sabathia deal, has fantastic potential. The bad news is that he can't pitch. Unless Fausto Carmona can be king of the hill for the Indians, they'll remain average for a few more years.
Chicago White Sox- They got Ken Griffey, Jr. Unfortunately, with his declining outfield abilities and the fact that 1st base and the DH positions are already filled by Paul Konerko and Jim Thome respectively means the South Siders don't have a place for their new superstar.
Los Angeles Dodgers- Same as above. Manny Ramirez arrives in a crowded outfield. They could feasibly start him, Andruw Jones, AND Juan Pierre at the same time. Now there's a scary thought. However, you can't deny that his bat and a change of scenery will benefit the Dodgers and himself. The only question here is whether or not Joe Torre will brook his shenanigans.
Atlanta Braves- Casey Kotchman is a decent 1Bman-- not as good as Texiera, but adequate. Will the drop-off be too severe for the Braves to handle?
Pittsburgh Pirates- Dealing away Nady and Bay hurts a lot. But they did recieve a handful of question marks, including "once highly-regarded prospect Craig Hansen". They probably will come out of this doing fine, though it will take a few years to find out.