Red Sox fans have come to expect a lot out of the July 31 trading deadline. In the past few years alone, the team was tremendously active in trying to improve the team before the non-waiver deadline passed.
In 2004, the Red Sox famously shipped out star shortstop Nomar Garciaparra in a move that helped the Red Sox in the long run — all the way to their first World Series title in 86 years. In 2008, the team traded away slugger Manny Ramirez. And just last year, the Sox were able to acquire All-Star catcher Victor Martinez from the Cleveland Indians.
In short, Red Sox fans are used to general manager Theo Epstein making a big splash for their team at the deadline.
This season, however, the Red Sox did not make a big deadline deal. Rumors were circulating that the Sox were looking to upgrade their bullpen and perhaps add another outfielder.
The club did neither. In fact, they traded away one of their relievers — Ramon Ramirez — to the Giants for a minor league pitcher. Instead of picking up another outfielder, the Red Sox instead acquired catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia from the Rangers, a player they have seemingly coveted for years.
Daniel Turpen, the pitcher the Sox received in the Ramon Ramirez deal, has the potential to one day be an effective major league pitcher. Saltalamacchia, on the other hand, gives the Red Sox needed catching depth at a position in which they've seen their No. 1 (Victor Martinez) and No. 2 (Jason Varitek) miss significant amounts of time due to injury this year.
Despite the long-term possibilities both bring, they aren't the type of high-impact players Red Sox fans are accustomed to seeing arrive on deadline day.
But, you also have to look at the alternative. Many teams were in the market for relief pitching, driving the price of relievers like Toronto's Scott Downs sky-high. The Blue Jays know how many valuable trading assets a team like the Red Sox are capable of offering, so that drove the prices even higher.
The Red Sox have made it no secret how much they covet those minor league prospects, and seem more than happy with holding onto them instead of dealing them away for help at the deadline if they deem their opponents' asking price too high.
But there are likely fans who don't want to hear that. Making their case even stronger were the deals the New York Yankees made acquiring Lance Berkman to fill a hole at designated hitter and acquiring reliever Kerry Wood from the Indians to try and shore up any questions the Yankees have about their bullpen.
So knowing what you know now, a day after the deadline has come and gone, and knowing what other teams around baseball have done, how do you think the Red Sox did at the trading deadline?
Share your thoughts below.The best comments will be read on NESN?s Red Sox GameDay Live or Red Sox Final.
July 31: Has the injury bug left Red Sox and spread throughout American League?