Contenders make deadline additions
With five North league teams battling for three playoff spots and a tight race in the Cactus Division, most of the contenders made noteworthy moves ahead of the trade deadline.
Cleveland, chasing Chicago and Boston in the Norris Division, made one of the biggest moves, acquiring Madison Bumgarner and Jayson Werth from Compton for youngsters Tyler Glasnow and Kyle Tucker in a deal that also featured a player to be named later and a total of 10 future draft picks between sides.
Maple Leaf frontrunner Calgary picked up a big bat in Victor Martinez and a rotation piece in Jacob deGrom from retooling division rival Ottawa in exchange for promising pitchers Dylan Bundy and Carl Edwards Jr., along with two first-round selections.
London bolstered its pursuit of the Roughriders by adding veteran offensive weapons Hanley Ramirez and Curtis Granderson in separate deals with St. Louis and Boston. Vancouver decided to pull the plug on struggling preseason acquisition Cole Hamels, shipping him to Pittsburgh in a deal for Junior Guerra.
While South League powers Memphis and Dublin had little need to upgrade while battling for the Confederate Division title, Cactus rivals Tijuana and Flagstaff tried to strengthen their postsason chances.
The first-place Tequila Swiggers snagged John Lackey from Boston and Josh Reddick from Compton, while the Elk acquired Ben Zobrist and Joe Blanton in two separate deals with the Braves.
Boston’s moves of apparent subtraction took some league observers by surprise with the Braves entering August with a five-game lead for the NL’s first wild-card berth.