Teams Busy Wheeling And Dealing As MLB Waiver Deadline Approaches
Many teams with playoff aspirations have been busy wheeling and dealing as the waiver deadline fast approaches. Teams are rolling the dice taking chances on players having less then productive years optimistic a change of scenery will boost their play for their new mates. Here is a look at the waiver wire action that has resulted in deals thus far as the deadline looms.
The Pittsburgh Pirates kicked off the frenzy when they acquired veterans Marlon Byrd and John Buck from the New York Mets for their playoff push. Byrd paid instant dividends dialling long distance in his first game as a Pirate.
The Cleveland Indians then took a chance on rejuvenating the career of Jason Kubel acquiring the veteran outfielder from the Arizona Diamondbacks. The Indians are hopeful Kubel’s return to the American League can kick start his 30 homer power potential from 2012. The Indians also signed veteran catcher Kelly Shoppach who will join his fourth team of the season.
The St.Louis Cardinals then bolstered their bullpen adding former closer John Axford from the Milwaukee Brewers. The Canadian hurler fell out of favour after losing the closers job and pitching like a shell of his former self. Axford has sported an earned run average over 4.00 the past two seasons.
The Baltimore Orioles had been busy working the waiver wire placing claims on Josh Willingham and Mike Morse. When eventual trade talks broke down with the Twins for Willingham, the Orioles focussed on Morse acquiring him for Xavier Avery. In Avery, the Seattle Mariners receive a former 2nd round pick in the 2008 amateur draft. The 23-year old outfielder played 32 games with the Orioles last season batting .223 with a homer and 6 stolen bases in limited at bats. The 31-year old Morse is hitting .226 with 13 home runs in 76 games and 2 seasons removed from a 31 homer season with the Washington Nationals.
Teams will have to wait and see if their respective gambles and waiver wire rummaging blossom into fruitful acquisitions but you can’t blame them for trying.