- The Washington Times - Monday, August 4, 2008

POINT-COUNTERPOINT

Each week, Nationals beat writers Mark Zuckerman and Ben Goessling debate a baseball issue. This week: Who came out the best from this year’s trade deadline?

MARK ZUCKERMAN: I’m taking the Angels. They already had the best record in the majors when they went out and acquired the best player on the market: Mark Teixeira. Yes, better than Manny Ramirez. This guy is in the prime of his career, wields a really potent bat and by all accounts doesn’t give up on his team. Putting him in the middle of a lineup that already includes Vladimir Guerrero, Torii Hunter and Garret Anderson makes them the favorites to win the World Series in my mind.

BEN GOESSLING: I’d have to say the Yankees for two reasons. First, they got better. The trade for Xavier Nady helps offset the absence of Hideki Matsui, and I like the pickup of Damaso Marte for their bullpen. And second, the Red Sox finally gave up on Manny Ramirez. I agree with you that the Angels should be the World Series favorites, but they were looking that way before they got Teixeira. The Yankees went from a team that had been patching together ways to keep up to one that has considerably fewer holes.

MZ: The Yankees did get better, but let’s not make that Nady-Marte trade out to be some kind of blockbuster. They got an average outfielder having a career year and a left-handed reliever. Tell me who’s going to have a bigger impact on their respective teams: Nady and Marte or Teixeira?

BG: I would frame the question a little differently: Did the Angels’ situation improve more by them getting Teixeria than the Yankees’ situation did by bringing Nady and Marte to the Bronx and seeing Ramirez leave Boston? The Angels were making the playoffs with or without Teixeira, and they were probably the favorites either way. The Yankees got better, and the Red Sox are now counting on Jason Bay matching Ramirez’s production down the stretch. That’s a pretty big change.

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