MLB trade deadline: Reviewing the impact of 2021 deadline trades

People line up for a photo with the 2021 Braves baseball World Series Championship Trophy at the Anderson University Softball Complex Wednesday July 27, 2022. The trophy is scheduled for 151 stops in the Southeast, commemorating 151 years of Braves baseball. The World Champions Trophy Tour Presented by Truist will travel throughout Braves Country, featuring locations in Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee, Mississippi, South Carolina, and North Carolina, according to Braves officials.Braves Championship Trophy Tour Stops In Anderson
People line up for a photo with the 2021 Braves baseball World Series Championship Trophy at the Anderson University Softball Complex Wednesday July 27, 2022. The trophy is scheduled for 151 stops in the Southeast, commemorating 151 years of Braves baseball. The World Champions Trophy Tour Presented by Truist will travel throughout Braves Country, featuring locations in Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee, Mississippi, South Carolina, and North Carolina, according to Braves officials.Braves Championship Trophy Tour Stops In Anderson /
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World Series MVP Jorge Soler.: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports
World Series MVP Jorge Soler.: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports /

The Braves revamp

Early in July, the Braves sent minor league first baseman Bryce Ball to the Cubs in exchange for outfielder Joc Pederson. At month’s end, they continued their outfield revamp, which had been necessitated by an injury to Ronald Acuña Jr. plus Ender Inciarte’s offensive failure and Marcel Ozuna’s suspension.

Within 48 hours at month’s end, they traded catching prospect Alex Jackson to Miami for Duvall, sent minor leaguer Kasey Kalich to Kansas City for Soler, and got Rosario from Minnesota at a cost of veteran Pablo Sandoval.

In retrospect, we know exactly what rewards the Braves reaped from these trades: they won the World Series, with all four acquisitions playing a role.

How about the other teams?

Sent to High-A South Bend after the trade, Ball has spent 2022 at Double-A Tennessee, where he’s batting .282. But Ball has failed to impress scouts enough to even crack the Cubs’ own Top 30 prospects list.

Promoted to Miami following the trade deadline, Jackson batted just .157 in 42 games for the Marlins in 2021. Traded to Milwaukee for another minor leaguer this past April, he has spent most of the season at Triple-A Nashville.

Kalich is at High-A Quad Cities, where he has made 24 relief appearances. Like Ball in the Cubs’ system, Kalich has not yet cracked his team’s top prospects list, much less made a major league debut.

Sandoval never appeared in a game for Cleveland, which released him immediately after obtaining him. He has retired.

The verdict: Obviously the Braves scored a series of short-term trade deadline coups. Beyond that, it does not appear that they gave up anything of consequence in any of their trades, making those trades long-term winners for them and long-term losers for their trading partners as well.