Trade Deadline Grades for Each Team

Arizona Diamondbacks: B+

The Diamondbacks made a big splash when they acquired JD Martinez from the Tigers. In return they sent top prospect Dawel Lugo in a package with two other prospects. It was a big package for a rental, but it was well worth it for a team that is contending. They shored up their bullpen by adding David Hernandez and added short stop Adam Rosales. The Diamondbacks needed to add some SS depth after Owings went down and Marte will be gone for a few days due to a death in the family.

Atlanta Braves: D

The Braves only made one move. They traded Jaime Garcia and Anthony Recker for low-level pitching prospect Huascar Ynoa. I think they could have received a better return from someone else for Garcia. They also could have made some more moves in trading some expiring contracts for prospects, but they did not. They stayed too quiet for me. Bad deadline for the Braves.

Baltimore Orioles: B

The Orioles are a tweener team. They are not completely out of it, but they are still a good amount away from being in it. They did not make any big splashing moves. They did acquire Jeremy Hellickson from the Philadelphia Phillies. This move would have been better last year as Hellickson is having a down year, but it is not a terrible move. They also receive some short stop help in acquiring Tim Beckham. I give them a B because of the move they did NOT make. They held onto Zach Britton. They have him for next year and did not like the offers they were receiving. They hold on and I think it is a great move for them.

Boston Red Sox: C+

They needed a third base upgrade and they got that in Eduardo Nunez. They could have used some help in the bullpen, but gave up three of their top-30 prospects for a rental in Addison Reed. They could have used some starting pitching help and first base help, but they did not address those two areas. The Nunez deal was great for them. However, that was about it in my eyes.

Chicago Cubs: A-

If I’m the Cubs I would have been willing to give up any of my prospects. All of my future pieces are in the majors right now and the time for them to win is NOW. The main goal is to win as many as you can. So if you have the opportunity to do so, you go for it. They gave up a bunch of their top prospects for two moves, but they were moves that could help them win another World Series or two. They acquired Jose Quintana, Justin Wilson and Alex Avila in two trades. The thing I like most is that Quintana and Wilson are not rentals. Avila will be a nice back up piece for Contreras behind the dish. They had some holes to fill and they filled them very nicely. Great deadline for the Cubs.

Chicago White Sox: A

I absolutely love what the White Sox are doing. They are in rebuild mode and they are fully committing to it. With the trades they made this year, they have added SEVEN players to their top-30 prospect list. Three of those players are ranked within the top 100 overall. Those players are Eloy Jimenez (#7 overall), Blake Rutherford (#45 overall) and Dylan Cease (#67 overall). Not to mention the pieces they added last year. The front office is doing a great job and the future for the White Sox looks very bright.

Cleveland Indians: B

The Indians may have been able to use a starting pitcher to bolster their rotation, but it was not necessary. They really did not need to make many moves as they have been playing great baseball. They are my favorite to make it to the World Series out of the American League. However, they did make one move. They acquired Joe Smith from the Toronto Blue Jays. Joe Smith will just add to their dominant bullpen and give their arms some rest when needed. Cleveland Indians 2017 World Series Champs.

Cincinnati Reds: D

Like the Braves they were too quiet for me. They moved Tony Cingrani to the Dodgers for an awful return and that was it. I was expecting them to sell a bit more, but they stayed put for the most part. They did not improve their farm system at all.

Colorado Rockies: A

Very, very nice deadline for the Rockies. They traded for exactly what they needed. They acquired Pat Neshek from the Phillies for lower-level prospects to bolster their bullpen. Neshek has been flat out dominant this year and they hope he continues that as he moves to Colorado. The deal I like even more is the acquiring of Jonathan Lucroy. All they are sending to the Rangers in return is a Player to be Named. I think Coors Field and a change of scenery will help Lucroy a lot.

Detroit Tigers: B

The Tigers were sellers at this year’s deadline and they did it pretty well. They acquired four prospects that fit into their top-30. Two of which are in their top-10. Jeimer Candelario is the biggest name of the group. He is currently #92 in the top 100 prospects in all of baseball. The Tigers moved two expiring contracts in Alex Avila and JD Martinez as well. They did not trade Justin Verlander, but I’m fine with that. They did not like the offers and he is still under contract. Solid deadline for the Tigers.

Houston Astros: C

They did not add the front end starting pitching I was hoping they did. I really wanted to see them make a splash and add an ace to pair with Keuchel. They also traded a potential 20-20 player for Francisco Liriano .. I do not get that move at all. The Dodgers and Astros have been the two best teams all year. The Dodgers improved, while the Astros stayed put.

Kansas City Royals: B

The Royals committed robbery from the Padres when they acquired pitchers Brandon Maurer, Ryan Buchter and Trevor Cahill. In return they sent Travis Wood, who has been down right awful; Matt Strahm, who is injured; and Esteury Ruiz, who is a low-level prospect. They also added Melky Cabrera for two prospects. Neither player was a high-end prospect. Melky has been having a very good season and the Royals needed some outfield help. They are pushing hard to give their core one more chance at a title before they lost them to free agency this coming off-season.

Los Angeles Dodgers: B+

They wanted Darvish, but they did not want to give up either of their top two prospects for him. They patiently waited and it paid off. They got Darvish and did not give up either Verdugo or Buehler. Darvish will serve as the ace until Kershaw comes back. When Kershaw does return, a 1-2 punch of Darvish and Kershaw will be dominant. The Dodgers also added two lefty arms to their bullpen in Tony Watson and Tony Cingrani.

Los Angeles Angels: C-

They made one move in acquiring a low level prospect for David Hernandez. They did not help their future or their chances of winning this year. The Angels continue to remain in limbo.

Miami Marlins: B-

The Marlins added some nice prospects to their farm system with a few trades. They traded away AJ Ramos, David Phelps and Adeiny Hechavarria. In return they received five prospects that place in their top-30. Their bullpen will be very slim next year, but the Marlins are not close to winning just yet.

Milwaukee Brewers: C+

They added two pieces to their bullpen, but that was about it. The Brewers are in the hunt this year and they wanted to add some pieces to help themselves out. However, I do not think they catch up to the Cubs no matter what. It was better of them not to trade away their future for big names. The move I did not like at all and the reason they have the C+ grade is trading away Ryan Cordell for Anthony Swarzak. Cordell is an intriguing prospect and they are just receiving a rental in Swarzak. I did not like this move at all for the Brewers.

Minnesota Twins: B-

They acquired Jaime Garcia for about nothing and turned him around to the Yankees for a nice package. I really liked that move a lot for the Twins. They hold onto their pieces under contract for next year and I like that a lot as well. What hurts their grade is the trade they made with the Nationals. They receive one lower-level prospect for Brandon Kintzler. I think they could have received a better package for him.

New York Mets: C

The trades they made I liked a lot. They added five bullpen arms that can help them now and down the road. AJ Ramos is under contract for next year and will be a nice set up man for Familia. Drew Smith, Gerson Bautista, Jaime Callahan and Stephen Nogosek are all bullpen arms that have reportedly touched mid to high 90’s. One of their weakest parts is their bullpen and they have definitely upgraded. However, what about the trades they did not make. Bruce, Granderson and Cabrera all could have been moved. Instead they are still in a Mets uniform. They should have moved them and received some prospects in return.

New York Yankees: A-

We move to the other side of town and see the Yankees destroy the deadline. The Yankees get a top of the rotation arm in Sonny Gray, they bolster their bullpen with David Robertson and Tommy Kahnle, they add starting pitching depth with Jaime Garcia and they add some corner offensive help with Todd Frazier. They part with some big name prospects, but they did not part with any of their prized pieces. The only trade I am iffy about is the Garcia trade. I think Zack Littell was too much for Garcia. Overall, great deadline for the Yanks.

Oakland Athletics: B-

The Athletics did receive a very nice package when they shipped off Sonny Gray to the Yankees, but two of those prospects are currently hurt. Teams are always taking a chance on prospects as we never know how they will pan out. Now you add an injury to two of those players. They have to recover first and then pan out. It is not an easy thing to do. If they do pan out it is a very, very good move for the A’s, but for now we shall see. What shocked me the most is that they held onto Yonder Alonso. There were teams out there that could have used First Base/DH help and Alonso is a free agent next year. Not sure why the A’s did not move him.

Philadelphia Phillies: B-

The Phillies were obvious sellers at the deadline as they are the worst team in baseball. They would have received a better package for Hellickson last year, but instead had to settle for a so-so package for him this year. The move I like the most for them is receiving McKenzie Mills  in exchange for Howie Kendrick. Mills will be in the Phillies’ top-30 prospects. Howie Kendrick is an aging rental and Mills has some potential to him.

Pittsburgh Pirates: C+

I think the Pirates got robbed in the Tony Watson trade. Watson is having a nice year and lefty bullpen arms are always a need. They received two lower-level prospects in return. If they had received a better package, their grade would have been higher. The only reason it is not lower is because they held onto Gerrit Cole and Andrew McCutchen. I was not sold on them being complete sellers at the deadline. I’m happy they were not and I’m sure the fans were even happier.

San Diego Padres: F

The Padres were another team that were obvious sellers. However, they made one move and got robbed. See the Royals’ grade for the full details on that. They also did not move Brad Hand or Jhoulys Chacin. Hand is under contract next year, but a lot of people expected him to be moved for a hefty price. Chacin is a veteran starting pitcher that could have helped teams at the back-end of their rotation or in the bullpen for as a long reliever. They needed to add more to their farm system and they failed to do so.

San Francisco Giants: C

They have been awful this year and it has been a shock to a lot of people. There were talks about possibly moving Johnny Cueto and Jeff Samardzija, but they failed to move either. They traded Eduardo Nunez to the Red Sox and received two prospects in return. The Nunez trade was a decent trade and their grade would have been lower if it was not for that.

Seattle Mariners: D

So they want to make the playoffs or … I’m not sure what they were doing at the deadline. There was room for improvement across the roster and it could have helped them make a push for a Wild Card spot. Instead they did not do much of anything. They traded for David Phelps, but gave up way too much for him. They traded away Steve Cishek for Erasmo Ramirez, which was just mind boggling. To top it all off they traded away a top-100 prospect in Tyler O’Neil for a mid-level prospect in Marco Gonzales. What is going on in Seattle’s front office?

St. Louis Cardinals: B

They are in the same boat as the Orioles: Tweener. They could have moved Lance Lynn, but they are within striking distance of first place in the NL Central. They decide to hold onto their chips and I have no problem with that. They made a very nice move in acquiring Tyler O’Neil is ranked as the #100 overall prospect for Marco Gonzales who will be ranked as the number 19 prospect in Seattle’s farm system.

Tampa Bay Rays: B+

The Rays quietly made some very nice moves that could help them secure a possible Wild Card spot or even contend for first place in the AL East. They added Sergio Romo, Dan Jennings and Steve Cishek to help out their bullpen. They also lefty-power hitting Lucas Duda to their lineup to play either First Base or DH. They do all of this without giving up any of their top prospects. Good deadline for the Rays.

Texas Rangers: B-

They were deciding whether they should sell or buy at the deadline. Ultimately, they decided to sell. They moved Yu Darvish and Jonathan Lucroy, who both are set to become free agents at the end of the season. They received basically nothing in return for Lucroy. I think the Rockies stole him away from them. They received a nice package for Darvish, but it was not as big as they wanted. They waited until last second in hopes they would receive more, but it did not happen. They still receive a very nice prospect in Willie Calhoun.

Toronto Blue Jays: B

The Blue Jays made two nice trades at the deadline acquiring some solid young players. The move I liked most was their trade of Francisco Liriano to the Astros. In return they received Teoscar Hernandez, who is a very intriguing prospect. Some scouts project Hernandez to eventually be a 20-20 type player (20 stolen bases and 20 homers per year).

Washington Nationals: B+

The Nationals front office had one job: UPGRADE THE BULLPEN. They succeeded. They went from the worst bullpen in the league to a bullpen that can be scary come playoff time. They acquired Ryan Madson and Sean Doolittle from the A’s. Then they went out and stole away Brandon Kintzler form the Twins. The Nationals now have a complete team.


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Nicholas LoPrinzi

I'm a washed up D3 college baseball player who is pursuing their MBA in Accounting. I love baseball, basketball, and football; while rooting for the New York Mets, New York Knicks, and New York Giants. Most of the time it is full of misery. I have recently found a passion for writing about sports. I have posted a few articles for Last Word on Sports and I have now created my own website ( You can check out my articles there and also follow the twitter account @_thesportstalk.

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