The MLB trade deadline came and went Friday afternoon, and while several impact moves were made, the most surprising moves may have been the ones that weren’t made.
“I think the biggest thing today was that the Padres did not move their players,” MLB Network analyst Harold Reynolds said on CBS Sports Radio’s The Doug Gottlieb Show. “There was so much talk and speculation about (Craig) Kimbrel and (Justin) Upton and (Tyson) Ross – you name it. Basically the whole roster – even Ian Kennedy – and nobody got moved. So that’s probably the biggest surprise of the day. Other than that, the Mets finally got a hitter. They got (Yoenis) Cespedes at the end of the day, and it may turn out where that ends up being a better move than it would have been with (Carlos) Gomez. So that was a crazy thing.”
The Mets were reportedly trading for Gomez earlier in the week, but the deal never went down. Instead, the Mets will gladly welcome Cespedes’ .293 average and 18 home runs into their lineup.
“You’re talking about a guy, to me, who’s one of the impact players in baseball,” Reynolds said. “But on top of that, the Mets need attraction – a guy that you sit there and you ooh and ahh. The uniform looks great, he’s tight, he looks like an athlete, he runs the bases, he flies, he’s got a cannon, he’s going to hit some long balls – he’s a guy that you go, ‘Man, we’re taking another step.’ That was a message for me with the Mets. It’s not the doldrums they’ve been in the lats four or five years. They’re actually putting some things together, they bring in a piece, and it just gives you a little bit more hope as a Mets fan I think.”
The Mets (52-50) are four-and-a-half games back of the Giants in the Wild Card race.
Elsewhere in the NL East, the Phillies (39-64) – owners of the worst record in baseball – parted ways with Cole Hamels, who was traded to Texas in an eight-player deal. Hamels, 31, had spent his entire 10-year career in Philadelphia.
Reynolds thought there should have been a bigger market for him.
“With Cole Hamels out there, I thought there should have been 29 other teams going, ‘I want in on this guy,’” Reynolds said. “It just doesn’t come along very often. Especially if you’re paying for an ace now – where you’re talking about (Clayton) Kershaw (and Max) Scherzer (getting over $200 milionl) – and you’ve got a guy that’s proven in the World Series he can pitch under pressure and he just threw a no-hitter and he’s starting to come on and he’s Cole Hamels? And you get him for $90 million? I think every club should have been on him, but we covet the prospects today so much more than ever before. I think really the message should have been made real clear with what Boston did this year. They coveted their prospects so much they weren’t in on Cole Hamels, the season starts and all their prospects did was struggle and they go from prospect to suspect. So I think it might be a message sent out there to everybody in baseball. I know we’re coveting the prospects a lot, but let’s not forget about the proven major leaguer who has a pretty good contract.”