Despite earning a wild card berth, 2009 was a forgettable season for many Red Sox fans. Coming just two years after the team's most recent World Series title and the first full season without star slugger Manny Ramirez, it would have been understandable if there was a drop-off.
The Red Sox managed another trip to the postseason in 2009, however, helped in large part by reliever Billy Wagner, who the team picked up in a waiver wire deal. The veteran left-hander struck out 22 batters in 13 2/3 innings to help the Sox reach the division series, where they were swept by the Los Angeles Angels.
Wagner was merely the latest in a long line of post-trade deadline pickups who have contributed to the Sox, and it's the time of year again when such deals are made.
One of the most memorable deals was the one that brought Dave Henderson and Spike Owen to Boston in 1986. Henderson never played a full season with the Red Sox, but his legacy lives on in his two-run home run in Game 5 of the American League Championship Series.
Mike Myers doesn't boast singular moment like that, but the situational lefty was a key part of the fabled 2004 championship team. After coming over from Seattle, Myers held left-handed batters to a .200 batting average as the Red Sox broke the 86-year curse.
Other acquisitions that may not have led to the World Series, but were still important, include Mark Kotsay, Tony Armas Jr. and Rod Beck.
Kotsay delivered key hits from the left side of the plate in 2008, helping the Red Sox reach the ALCS before being shipped to the Chicago White Sox the following year.
The scruffy Beck never approached the save totals he achieved with the Cubs during his time in Boston, but following his acquisition in 1999 he became a key member of the Sox' bullpen. He contributed two perfect innings of relief in the 1999 ALDS before a not-so-successdul ALCS against the Yankees. Beck pitched 80 2/3 innings out of the pen in 2001, his final year with the team.
Armas, whom the Red Sox acquired from the Yankees in a waiver deal, never pitched an inning for the Red Sox, but he was pivotal for another reason. On Dec. 18, 1997, Armas and Carl Pavano (along with a player to be named) were shipped to Montreal for a little righty named Pedro Martinez. Maybe you've heard of him.