Ever since Aug. 6, 1998, the value of the July 31 trade line deadline has diminished. That was when then-San Diego general manager Kevin Towers, wanting to block other contenders from being able to add a veteran left-hander – even though Atlanta was the only team with a better record and thus the only team with a chance to claim Randy Myers after the Padres – put in a waiver claim on the lefty. Toronto happily awarded Myers to the Padres, who were stuck with $15 million remaining salary for a thread-bare reliever. He pitched in 21 games in the remainder of 1998, compiling a 6.28 earned-run average, and then spent the next two years collecting checks from San Diego for not pitching. Gordon Ash, the Jays’ general manager at the time, said if Towers had asked he would have warned him that any team that claimed Myers was going to get stuck with him. Towers might have gotten stuck, but it is apparent the rest of baseball has heeded the warning. The so-called July 31 trading deadline hasn’t been the same since. Oh, there are trades being made in the moments leading up to that deadline but there also… Read full this story
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