The trade deadline has passed, and teams are now scrambling to find the best possible lineup for their playoff push. These moves could have a significant impact on how each team performs in the playoffs.
The mlb trade deadline 2021 is the time where all 30 teams stand after the trade deadline.
The MLB trade deadline has passed, with clubs making spectacular moves one after the other in one of the most active deadlines in recent memory.
With Anthony Rizzo and Joey Gallo, can the Yankees make a run at the AL East title? Will the Dodgers’ all-star lineup be enough to unseat the Giants as the best club in baseball? With Javier Baez in the lineup, how good are the Mets?
Based on everything they’ve learned in the first four months of the 2021 season, our eight-voter expert panel has come to the following conclusion. We also asked ESPN baseball analysts David Schoenfield, Bradford Doolittle, Joon Lee, Jesse Rogers, and Alden Gonzalez to provide one Week 17 prediction based on what they’ve observed lately for all 30 clubs.
Weeks 16 | Week 15 | Week 14 | Week 13 | Week 12 | Week 11 | Week 10 | Week 9 | Week 8 | Week 7 | Week 6 | Week 5 | Week 4 | Week 3 | Week 2 | Week 1
68-40 is the score. 1st place previously
Even if their starters have the fourth-lowest ERA in the majors, if you want to nitpick — or maybe it’s more than that — you might argue that the Giants should have gone all-in for Max Scherzer to anchor the top of their rotation. Alternatively, one might argue that they should have persuaded the Angels to trade Raisel Iglesias, despite Tyler Rogers and Jake McGee’s combined 2.10 ERA and 0.91 WHIP while shutting down the ninth inning. They did, however, bring in Kris Bryant, an impact hitter with valuable flexibility who is a great match for their order. They also ensured that the National League West would be a thrilling battle down the line. Gonzalez’s words
65-44 is the score. 3rd place before.
The Dodgers may have pushed themselves over the top once again. They acquired the greatest pitcher (Max Scherzer) and best position player (Trea Turner) available before the trade deadline in one fell swoop, adding them to an already absurd collection of players. With Trevor Bauer in legal problems and Clayton Kershaw still returning from forearm irritation, Scherzer will help anchor a rotation and provide some much-needed depth. Turner, a shortstop by trade, will likely spend the most of his plate appearances in center field and second base, filling in for Cody Bellinger and, if he is well again, Gavin Lux. In 2019, the Dodgers’ talent was mind-blowing. Mookie Betts, David Price, Albert Pujols, Scherzer, and Turner have all been added since then. Now it’s… unheard of? Gonzalez’s words
65-43 is the score. Previous position: 2
With the Astros visiting Dodger Stadium this week and experiencing the expected vitriol, you have to wonder whether angry opposition fans are really harming their own cause. Maybe their boos, jeers, and boos are just protecting Astros batters from the consequences of playing in difficult, high-pressure environments. Houston has batted 10 points better away from Minute Maid Park (.262 to.252) and has a 15-point advantage in OPS since the start of last season (.767 to.752). When the statistics of the four most hated members of the 2017 Astros — Jose Altuve, Carlos Correa, Alex Bregman, and the now-deceased George Springer — are added together, the splits are.787 at home and.815 on the road. Doolittle’s quote
65-44 is the score. Previous position: 5
Tampa Bay is a formidable opponent. The club had a rough June, going 12-14, before going 16-8 in July to re-establish themselves as one of the best teams in the American League, leapfrogging the Red Sox for first place in the AL East. Willy Adames, Rich Hill, and Diego Castillo were all dealt ahead of the trade deadline, demonstrating the team’s dedication to provide chances for young, promising players. Lee —
63-45 is the score. Previous position: 6
While we wait to see how the White Sox strengthen their roster for October, the White Sox have an intriguing issue a few weeks down the road: who will be in their playoff rotation? It’s a surplus issue rather than a need one. Lance Lynn, Dallas Keuchel, Lucas Giolito, Dylan Cease, and Carlos Rodon have been one of baseball’s most productive, durable, and reliable starting lineups. Keuchel has been the least effective of the five this season, but he is the highest-paid pitcher in the rotation and has the most playoff experience. Due to these circumstances, it seems that Cease will need to finish the season on a high note in order to make a claim. Doolittle’s quote
Record:65-44 Previous position: 8
Milwaukee’s offense has come a long way since the first half. The Brewers have a.246 batting average and have ranked ninth in the National League in OPS during the last week. That’s a lot more than they’ve had so far this season. Without Christian Yelich due to COVID-19, Willy Adames and Avisail Garcia led the way. If Milwaukee can bat in the middle of the pack, it will be a very scary October club, since it can pitch with anybody. Rogers’ comment
64-45 is the score. Previous position: 4
While the rest of the AL East made moves to improve their teams as the season progressed, Boston chose to rely on Chris Sale to improve its struggling rotation and the acquisition of Kyle Schwarber to fill the offensive void at first base, despite the fact that the former Chicago Cub and Washington National had never played first base in a major league game. Lee —
62-48 is the score. Previous position: 7
The Padres have had a difficult couple of days. It started with the team losing out on a top starting pitcher — first Max Scherzer, then everyone else — and then Chris Paddack and Fernando Tatis Jr. were both placed on the shelf. Paddack is now suffering from an oblique strain. Tatis, a contender for MVP, has once again suffered a subluxation of his left shoulder, prompting the Padres to consider season-ending surgery. In the near term, Tatis’ absence may be mitigated by the addition of Adam Frazier, which makes it simpler for Jake Cronenworth to slot in at shortstop. But without Tatis, it’s difficult to see them beating the Giants and Dodgers, much alone winning the World Series, in the next two to three months. Gonzalez’s words
61-48 is the score. Previous position: 9
In order to compete for a postseason berth, Oakland acquired rental outfielder Starling Marte in exchange for Jesus Luzardo, as well as Yan Gomes, Josh Harrison, and Andrew Chafin. Given that Marte will be a free agent after the season, the choice to sell Luzardo, a previous top prospect and excellent lefty, at the bottom of his value, will be an intriguing storyline to monitor over the next several seasons. Lee —
56-49 is the score. Previous position: 11
Toronto gave up a lot to sign Jose Berrios from the Minnesota Twins, a move that will improve the rotation’s strength not just this year, but also for the next year, since the club still has one season of team arbitration control. As Toronto makes a run for the postseason this season, Berrios joins Hyun Jin Ryu and Robbie Ray, boosted by the bullpen acquisitions of Brad Hand and Joakim Soria. Lee —
58-49 is the current record. Previous position: 12
The Yankees went out and signed Joey Gallo, Anthony Rizzo, and Andrew Heaney at the trade deadline with the hopes of bolstering a struggling club. In the division battle, the club is still closer to the fourth-place Toronto Blue Jays than the second-place Boston Red Sox, but despite the Bronx Bombers’ erratic season, general manager Brian Cashman felt compelled to go out and make some additions in order to attempt to make a postseason push. Lee —
57-51 is the score. 14th place before.
The Reds are still in the hunt for a postseason spot in the National League, but can a club with baseball’s worst bullpen be considered a contender? Heath Hembree’s most recent breakdown occurred on Tuesday, when he allowed a three-run ninth-inning home run, enabling Minnesota to complete a comeback. The fact that Cincinnati needed to employ a pitcher with a 5.00 ERA in the ninth inning of a one-run game tells you all you need to know about their season. Amir Garrett has been terrible, and the Reds have struggled with pretty much everyone else they’ve tried. Perhaps the arrival of reliever Mychal Givens, who threw a perfect inning on Tuesday, will help, but it might not be enough. Rogers’ comment
56-51 is the score. Previous position: 10
Here’s how all 30 teams fared during a crazy trade deadline, from huge winners to clubs that did nothing. (ESPN+) Bradford Doolittle
Every transaction is graded | Passan
Aside from power and defense (and a low OBP), Javier Baez adds some much-needed speed to the basepaths. The Mets set a goal for themselves in 2021 to enhance their baserunning, but it hasn’t occurred yet. They are 16 runs below average in FanGraphs’ baserunning statistic, which ranks them worst in the majors. Baez will be a decent fill-in for Francisco Lindor at shortstop, but beyond the odd home run, we’ll have to see how much he contributes at the bat. His strikeout rate has increased by 10% from 2018, when he finished second in MVP voting. Schoenfield’s
58-51 is the current record. Previous position: 13
The Mariners’ bullpen coughed up a few games for the first time in weeks over the weekend, after the contentious trade of closer Kendall Graveman and the subsequent signing of Diego Castillo. On Saturday, Castillo lost a 4-3 lead in the 10th inning, and Erik Swanson squandered a 3-1 lead in the ninth inning on Sunday. Seattle bounced back with a victory in Tampa Bay on Monday, but the road trip concludes with four games at Yankee Stadium. Schoenfield’s
54-54 is the score. Previous position: 16
On deadline day, the Braves rebuilt their outfield by adding Jorge Soler, Adam Duvall, and Eddie Rosario, as well as Pirates closer Richard Rodriguez. Soler led the American League with 48 home runs in 2019, but he was batting just.192 with the Royals, after hitting seven home runs in 14 games before to the deal. After almost entirely DHing in 2020, he has started 46 games in right field, although his defensive stats are dismal. Let’s watch how Brian Snitker divides up the playing time with the right-handed Soler, Duvall, and Guillermo Heredia, as well as the left-handed Joc Pederson and Rosario. Schoenfield’s
55-53 is the current record. 15th place before.
The Phillies acquired Kyle Gibson and Ian Kennedy at the deadline, and Gibson had an instant impact, allowing only two runs in 6 2/3 innings to defeat the Pirates in his first start. The Phillies promoted Ranger Suarez to the rotation when Kennedy was demoted to the bullpen, and he answered with three shutout innings against the Nationals on Monday. A huge nine-game homestand against the Mets, Dodgers, and Reds is coming up. Schoenfield’s
53-54 is the score. Previous position: 19
Last month, St. Louis probably didn’t have much to deal for prospects since Yadier Molina and Adam Wainwright weren’t going anywhere. Instead, the Cardinals bolstered their bullpen with the additions of Jon Lester and J.A. Happ. Neither pitcher is having a terrific season, and Lester’s first start with the Cardinals was a disaster. Other than playing out the string in the hopes that its 13 games against the Brewers have some significance, it’s difficult to say what St. Louis is thinking for the remainder of 2021. It’s unlikely to happen. Rogers’ comment
52-53 is the current record. Previous position: 17
If someone had told you before the season that Cleveland would be 27th in the majors by early August, with a rotation ERA on the wrong side of 5.00, you’d think the Indians would be where they are now: out of the race. When available, the trio of Shane Bieber, Aaron Civale, and Zach Plesac have combined for a 23-10 record and 3.72 ERA in 44 appearances, including 24 quality starts. In 60 innings, everyone else has combined to go 5-23 with a 6.84 ERA and eight quality starts. Ouch. Doolittle’s quote
Previous ranking: 18; current record: 54-54; previous record: 54-54; previous record: 54-54
Before the trade deadline, the Angels largely maintained the course, dealing away a handful of lesser-known pending free agents (starter Andrew Heaney, reliever Tony Watson) but keeping everyone else, most notably closer Raisel Iglesias. This bunch, according to Angels general manager Perry Minasian, “deserves a shot to contend over the next two months,” but Anthony Rendon is set to have season-ending hip surgery, and Mike Trout’s recovery from a strained calf he sustained on May 17 is still unknown. For the Angels, it’s critical to evaluate what they have in players like Reid Detmers, Jo Adell, and Brandon Marsh, who are all with the big league team. Gonzalez’s words
Previous ranking: 21. Record: 52-58
The MLB season of 2021 will be broadcast on ESPN, ABC, and the ESPN App.
All timings are in Eastern Standard Time.
Thursday, August 5th, 8:15 p.m. on ESPN, Braves-Cardinals
On ESPN, the Mets take on the Phillies on Friday, August 6 at 7 p.m.
Cubs vs. White Sox, 7 p.m. on ABC, Sunday, August 8
Miguel Cabrera is not only on his way to reaching the coveted 500-home run mark, but he’s doing it in style. Cabrera has hit.326/.365/.508 with six home runs and 27 RBIs in 37 games since the middle of June. No, it isn’t nearly enough to suggest Cabrera’s relentless career slide has halted. As far as we can tell, time is a one-way street. However, it shows that Cabrera can still rake for extended periods of time, which is important considering the length of his deal. Doolittle’s quote
46-62 is the score. Previous position: 23
The Marlins’ three major deadline acquisitions, starter Jesus Luzardo, catcher Alex Jackson, and outfielder Bryan De La Cruz, should all have an opportunity to play in the last two months. Jackson, a former Mariners first-round pick who hit 28 home runs in Triple-A in 2019 and was raking in Triple-A this year with a.287/.366/.694 line in 30 games, is intriguing. De La Cruz, 24, came here from Houston and was hitting.324/.362/.518 in Triple-A, but he doesn’t walk as often as the Marlins. Schoenfield’s
49-59 is the score. Previous position: 21
Mike Rizzo’s decision to cull the roster before the trade deadline was aided by an 8-18 record in July. Max Scherzer, Trea Turner, Brad Hand, Kyle Schwarber, Josh Harrison, Daniel Hudson, Yan Gomes, and Jon Lester are among the players that have left the team. Only Stephen Strasburg’s and Patrick Corbin’s contracts remain. Carter Kieboom and Luis Garcia will have more opportunities to play frequently as the season progresses, allowing them to establish themselves as important members of the 2022 squad. Schoenfield’s
46-60 is the record. Previous position: 24
Pete Grathoff of the Kansas City Star reported Dayton Moore’s intriguing remarks on Kansas City radio this week. In essence, Moore said that Adalberto Mondesi’s failure to remain off the disabled list has reached a stage where the Royals can no longer consider him an everyday player when planning their roster for next season. It’s a frightening notion for a guy who is just 26 years old and has proven he can produce at a top, MVP-type level, or as near to it as an offensive player can without a trace of plate discipline, on occasion. It may also be a struggle for Mondesi to find a way to keep his spot in the lineup. Doolittle’s quote
52-57 is the current record. Previous position: 20
The Cubs will have trials for the next two months as they try to find the next set of players who can help them back to postseason contention. The key moments will occur on the mound, when youthful draft choices Keegan Thompson and Justin Steele, as well as youngster Adbert Alzolay, will be scrutinized. Over the last several years, the Cubs have gotten their pitching via free agency, which has been expensive. They don’t mind doing things a little differently this time. Rogers’ comment
47-61 is the score. Previous position: 26
The Rockies were the buzz of the trade deadline, and it wasn’t for the better. They decided to keep their standout shortstop, Trevor Story, a prospective free agent who has no interest in staying with the club, for whatever reason. After Story turned down the Rockies’ qualifying offer this summer, the club decided that the compensation selection in next year’s draft was more appealing than the value on a possible deal. That’s hard to believe given the results on rentals like Kris Bryant, Anthony Rizzo, and Javier Baez. The Rockies seem to be adrift. The next several months will be spent plotting a path. Gonzalez’s words
45-63 is the score. Previous position: 25
As the Twins move on from their disastrous 2021 season and look to the future, it’s impossible not to wonder what role Miguel Sano will play. Sano’s salary is expected to be about $10.6 million next season, according to Cot’s Contracts, with a $14 million club option for 2023 and a $2.75 million buyout. Sano has hit.219/.308/.484 with a 113 OPS+ and minus-27 defensive runs saved since the start of the 2018 season. With two months remaining in the season, it equates to a four-year total of 2.6 bWAR. Sano has the ability to strike the ball as hard as anybody. In fact, his career isolated power of.253 is good for 26th all-time among players with at least 2,500 plate appearances, just one point behind the Hall of Fame trio of Joe DiMaggio, Ken Griffey Jr., and Frank Thomas. When does that power stop appearing often enough to compensate for his other flaws? Doolittle’s quote
39-69 is the current record. Previous position: 28
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The Rangers just were on a double-digit losing skid, and that was before they traded Joey Gallo and Kyle Gibson. The rest of the way, like most teams that subtract at the deadline, is spent finding out what they have going ahead. At the deadline, the Phillies acquired Spencer Howard, as well as two middle infielders from the Yankees in exchange for Gallo. Now that Howard is in the majors, Texas will give him every opportunity to be a top or middle-of-the-rotation starter. Rogers’ comment
41-67 is the score. Previous position: 28
Pittsburgh’s ERA continues to rise as the team’s pitching staff continues to struggle. After the transactions of Adam Frazier and Richard Rodriguez, the Pirates’ potential to play spoiler is likely to be gone. The Pirates are in their apparently perpetual “see what we have for next year” phase, which will provide them with lots of data but few victories in 2022. Rogers’ comment
38-69 is the score. Previous position: 29
Matt Harvey was on a roll heading into his start on Wednesday, having thrown 18.1 scoreless innings in his previous three appearances, all of which he won. Before the season, the Orioles signed the former New York Mets ace on a minor league contract, and he struggled until his current run of games. Lee —
34-75 is the score. 30th in the previous ranking
The D-backs, as anticipated, didn’t make any major moves before the deadline, parting with Eduardo Escobar, Joakim Soria, and Stephen Vogt, a trio of upcoming free agents. The D-backs must now determine how soon they can compete in that division, a decision that may influence their strategy with Madison Bumgarner, who has a 1.80 ERA in his last four appearances. Gonzalez’s words
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