Three big deals occurred last night that beat the deadline for post season rosters. The Dodgers got Jim Thome from the White Sox for cash and a minor league player to essentially pinch hit since he can't play first base. The Dodgers also acquired Jon Garland from the Diamondbacks to bolster their rotation (too bad for knuckleballer, Haeger) for a player to be named later. And the White Sox also sent Contreras to the Rockies.
American League pitchers have a history of doing well after being traded to the National League. So perhaps Contreras can contribute for the Rockies after an abysmal season for the White Sox. Perhaps just getting away from his manager will take some of the pressure off of him.
Thome can't play in the field, so he becomes a pretty expensive pinch hitter for the rest of the season and post season. He may hit a homer or three to win a game or two for his new team. The biggest benefit he'll provide is a boost to Manny Ramirez and his morale. The two played together in Cleveland and really like each other.
Garland should help the Dodgers a lot. He is coming off a great start from this past week and appears to be peaking as the season goes along. He should be worth a win or two. Plus, he is familiar to pitching in the American League and that should help the Dodgers in the post season if they get to the World Series.
The moves prove the Rockies and the Dodgers are serious and ready to spend a little to get the job done. The moves also indicate that the White Sox have thrown in the towel and figure they have no hope to compete the rest of the way out.