With the All-Star Game behind us and the trade deadline coming fast, let's look back at the last week:
- The Nationals shook things up last week, firing Manny Acta as their manager. It's hard to imagine that anyone could have turned the Nats around, but Jim Riggleman will get the next chance at the job.
- The Phillies roster looks a little different now, but not because of a trade. They signed future hall-of-famer Pedro Martinez this week. Pedro will receive a base of about $1MM with another $1.5MM possible via incentives. Does Pedro have enough left in the tank to make a big impact for the 2008 World Champs?
- The player to be named later from the Scott Hairston trade was announced this week: Sean Gallagher. The A's landed Gallagher in last year's Rich Harden deal with the Cubs. While he's struggled in Oakland, Gallagher is still just 23 and has quite a bit of potential. The Padres got a pretty nice haul for Hairston.
- You can add the Cardinals to list of teams that will make a run at Roy Halladay. The Jays were big on 2008 first-rounder Brett Wallace, whom the Cardinals took at the number 13 spot, four ahead of the Blue Jays. An interesting thought: could Halladay demand a trade following the 2009 season if he's moved by Toronto?
- The Red Sox made a few headlines this week, opening extension talks with Jason Bay and also designating shortstop Julio Lugo for assignment. Talks about a new deal for Bay have stalled until the offseason it seems, while the Sox have received calls from a number of teams about Lugo, including the Cubs, Cardinals, and Mets.
- The Cubs signed B.J. Ryan this week, following his release from the Blue Jays. Can the former dominant closer revive his career with the Cubs, or have injuries taken too much of a toll for him to make a significant impact?
- The Orioles are looking to deal before the deadline, and names like Danys Baez, George Sherrill, Melvin Mora, and Aubrey Huff are up in the air. The Angels are said to have interest in Sherrill; where can you see the rest them going, or do the Orioles hold onto a player like Huff to collect the draft picks?