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Ranking the Best Trades of 2012

Tuesday, July 31, 2012 8:26 PM

1. Zack Greinke (RHP) to LAA; Jean Segura (SS), John Hellweg (RHP), & Ariel Pena (RHP) to MIL

Any time you can add a former Cy Young Award winner to your starting rotation that already has two top-of-the-rotation starters (Weaver and Wilson), I think that is huge. However, they may have given up too much for Grienke in the long run, especially if they cannot work out an extension in the offseason. This move communicates to the entire league that they are serious about winning NOW.

2. Hunter Pence (OF) to SF; Nate Schierholtz (OF), Tommy Joseph (C), & Seth Rosin (RHP) to PHI

This move could have a major impact as the Giants try to win the NL West. Pence will be a vast improvement over all of the RFs that the Giants have used this season, and he will provide a much-needed pop in the middle of the lineup. Also, he has done very well as a visitor to San Francisco, and his line drive style should help him continue to do well there.

3. Ryan Dempster (RHP) to TEX; Kyle Hendricks (RHP) & Christian Villanueva (3B)

The Rangers had to go get a starting pitcher, especially with the news that Feliz is having Tommy John surgery, and they got a pretty good one in the nick of time. Also, Texas did not have to give up either of their top prospects (Profar or Olt) in order to land Dempster. I am concerned about how he will do against American League lineups, but this move does help solidify the Rangers’ rotation as they hit the “Dog Days.”

4. Hanley Ramirez (SS/3B) & Randy Choate (LHP) to LAD; Nate Eovaldi (RHP) & Scott McGough (RHP) to MIA

Because of Hanley’s production struggles in recent years and his attitude concerns, some may not like this pickup for the Dodgers. I like the deal a lot because it addressed the Dodgers’ biggest need: SS/3B offensive production. I still think LA is missing some key pieces, but a newly motivated Ramirez could keep them in the hunt in the NL West.

5. Ernesto Frieri to LAA; Alexi Amarista (2B) & Donn Roach (RHP) to SD This was a trade that was made early in the season and did not set the MLB world ablaze, but it had paid massive dividends for the Angels thus far. Frieri's streak of appearances without an earned run helped to spark the Angels turnaround, and he infused confidence in the back end of their bullpen

Also considered:

-Omar Infante (2B) & Annibal Sanchez (RHP) to DET; Jacob Turner (RHP), Rob Brantly (C), & Brian Flynn (LHP) to MIA

-Wandy Rodriguez (LHP) to PIT; Rudy Owens (LHP), Colton Cain (LHP), & Robbie Grossman (OF) to HOU

-Shane Victorino (OF) to LAD; Josh Lindblom (RHP) & Ethan Martin (RHP) to PHI

Tweet @MLBFanCave and @KyleOKC with your own top five trades of the deadline.

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