In this first year without Major League Baseball’s non-waiver trade deadline, the American League-leading Houston Astros landed a last-minute whopper. Fans and the media were glued to their Twitter feeds, but aside from bringing back Martín Maldonado, nothing was happening.
That is, until just two minutes before the 4:00 PM EST deadline. At 4:13 PM, MLB insider Ken Rosenthal announced the Astros’ big haul: “BREAKING: #Astros get Greinke.”
My reaction: “Whoa, Ken Rosenthal just dropped a bomb.”
After a few seconds to process the impact, I joined fellow fans on Facebook posting about the insanity of what this trade means for our team.
On top of the stacked batting lineup in place, the Astros have added another Hall of Fame-caliber pitcher to an already stifling pitching rotation.
Adam Wexler on SportsTalk 790 Radio said this: “The New Evil Empire is in Houston.”
And if these events were not crazy enough, the New York Yankees, who have been rising back to their old glory days, didn’t even make a move to keep up with Houston.
The MLB decided to cut the non-waiver Trade Deadline in 2019. Without this weird deadline, teams have their postseason rosters all set once August and September hit, with no further moves allowed. In other words, no more second-chance deals like Houston’s acquisition of Justin Verlander from the Detroit Tigers on August 31, 2017.
In addition to acquiring Zack Greinke from the Arizona Diamondbacks, the Astros picked up Aaron Sanchez and Joe Biagini from the Toronto Blue Jays.