Pujols signed with the Angels. Fielder signed with the Tigers. When the Cardinals defeated the Rangers in an exciting game game 7 of the World Series, I wouldn’t have believed anyone that told me that Fielder and Pujols would both no longer be playing in the National League.
Biggest surprise signing- Angels sign Albert Pujols:
Everyone practically knew that the Angels would sign CJ Wilson. However, when I wrote about the Pujols frenzy in early December, nobody voted in a poll for the Angels to win the Pujols sweepstakes. At the time, it seemed as if Pujols would either be a Cardinal or a Marlin next year. Then, as the winter meetings came to a close in Dallas, it seemed as if the machine would remain a Cardinal for life. Little did we know that the Angels would win the sweepstakes on the final morning of the meetings. The same team that conceded their main target Carl Crawford to the Red Sox last year. The same team who always promise a big splash, but rarely delivers. One thing is for sure, the Angels should be taken very seriously in the future.
Honorable mentions: Tigers sign Prince Fielder. Marlins sign Jose Reyes, Heath Bell, & Mark Buehrle.
Biggest surprise trade – Michael Pineda for Jesus Montero:
Jorge Posada was contemplating retirement and the Yankees had always resisted to trade their all-star catcher in the making. The Mariners on the other hand looked at Pineda as their next King Felix. This trade came out of nowhere. Two prospects who were so highly valued by their teams that if another team expressed interest in trading for them, their respective teams would shoot them down. The Yankees had signed Kuroda more or less and now had 6 starters. The Mariners play in a pitchers park so giving up an ace in the making for a power hitter wouldn’t make sense. This trade came out of nowhere, and I’m still confused.
Honorable mentions: Multiplayer trade between the A’s and Diamondbacks
Most confusing signing – Phillies sign Jonathan Papelbon:
The Phillies could have gotten the younger version of Papelbon in Ryan Madison for a lot less. So why did they shell out the largest contract for a closer in the game’s history for the erratic Papelbon? Who knows, this signing just left me confused.
Honorable mentions: Rangers sign Yu Darvish
Most confusing trade – Jonathan Sanchez and others for Melky Cabrera and others:
The Giants have an amazing pitching staff and Sanchez is a consistent strike out machine. So why did they trade him? He will be a free agent next year and with their deep starting rotation, they could have saved him for the trade deadline and possibly gotten a lot more. The Royals on the other hand… well all of their moves are confusing.
Honorable mentions: Red Sox trade Mark Scutaro to the Rockies
Most successful team – Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim:
Really not much to say here other than list the first four starters of their starting rotation. Jered Weaver, Dan Haren, CJ Wilson, Ervin Santana. They have three aces and a solid number two. Keep in mind they also have the best player of the last decade in Albert Pujols.
Honorable mentions: Los Angeles Dodgers (McCourt selling), Miami Marlins, Detroit Tigers
They fell apart in October and they haven’t really made a big move other than hiring a new GM and manager. They needed starting pitching and didn’t even make a considerable effort for CJ Wilson. One thing is for sure, the Red Sox need to take some tips from the AFC champion New England Patriots.
Honorable mentions: New York Yankees, San Francisco Giants