The trade deadline has now passed and the fanbase is not happy. Cleveland found themselves in sell mode despite entering deadline day just one game back of the Minnesota Twins. The Guardians traded away Amed Rosario, Aaron Civale, and Josh Bell, only receiving back one current major league player with a couple of prospects to show for it. This was not the approach that the fans were hoping for and any animosity they are feeling towards the front office is completely justified.
Before we continue, let's get one thing straight here. The issue is not with trading away players they did. Rosario had no future in Cleveland as the team needs to figure out what they have in other players. Civale's value was at an all-time high, being able to take advantage of a seller's market when it comes to pitching while they have plenty of other options available to them was and always will be the right move. As far as Bell is concerned, they admitted their $16.5 million mistake and moved on. Trading these players is not the issue, getting no real help in the hitting department is.
There is one more thing to take into consideration when evaluating the trades made by Cleveland's front office. It is very obvious that this is not a team that is going to go far into the postseason should they even get that far. This team has been dealt with blow-after-blow to their pitching staff in addition to more than a few players not pulling their weight in the batter's box. Admitting that a deep postseason run is not in the cards and swinging for the fences is tolerable, doing nothing to improve the possibility of that happening by acquiring a major league caliber bat is not.
Not making a blockbuster-type trade for a high-profile player is fine, but the lack of urgency shown by the Guardians to address clear areas of need is inexcusable.
The only current major leaguer the Guardians received in their trade packages that the team did not immediately release was Noah Syndergaard. That is an absolute embarrassment and a direct middle finger to the fans. While Thor pitched admirably in his Guardians debut, his recent track record shows that this is not something to count on moving forward. But for this team to not take a chance on a single experienced bat on a flier is insulting.
It is not like there were no options for the Guardians to choose from to supplement their incredibly light-hitting outfield group. Dylan Carlson, Tyler O'Neill, Teoscar Hernandez, and Tommy Pham are just a few options on the market that they could have considered. Is this the most exciting group of players that could have been acquired? No, but it beats staying the course with their current outfield configuration.
The fact of the matter is that there is a certain standard that teams who are serious about putting together a winning product on the field are held to. Right now the Guardians happen to be acting in a manner that can only be considered unserious. Nobody is expecting to see them become the proverbial trade deadliner winner. All the fans were asking for the team to at least pretend like they are trying while they still have a chance of winning the division.
Seeing moves made by organizations genuinely looking to win and win now in comparison to what Cleveland "accomplished" is night and day. There is not a single person out there who can say that this season's Guardians team is better off today than they were a little over a week ago. If the non-competitive approach to 2023 taken by this team turns off legions of fans nobody will blame them. The way this front office again passed on adding a notable hitter to their lineup is incredibly infuriating and is an absolute disservice to their fanbase. In fact, it is a complete disgrace and they should be ashamed of their actions.