Not Losing Sight on a Trade

Leading up to the non-waiver trade deadline there will be a multitude of transactions announced. Each team involved is making a calculated guess that their team will become stronger as a result of a deal. Some of the teams are expecting an immediate impact while others are looking further into the future to receive dividends in a trade.

Baseball writers and fans will continually check their smart phones, laptops, and make calls to see who is on the move and which teams are winnings and which are losers as they push towards the end of the season to the play-offs.

I have to admit; I was just as wrapped up in the trades as everyone else. It took a comment from my daughter to put things in perspective. “Dad, what happens to the player’s families when they get traded?”

She had a very good point. It is easy to think of players as commodities that are traded like stocks on the open market. We sometimes lose track of the fact that each one of these announced deals have implications beyond the logo on a uniform.

In some cases these players are youngsters just out of high school or college. They have their heads down trying to play up to their potential. Suddenly the get a phone call or a visit from a minor league manager telling them they have been sent to another organization.

Not only do they need to clean out their locker at the stadium but they also need to make arrangements with their landlord or host family, tell their friends and teammates good bye, and maybe call home to let their parents know their lives have just completely changed.

If the player is in the Major League, the problem can be exponentially more difficult. In many cases a player will have a wife and likely small children. During the season they may be leasing a house in the city where they play and kids could be in school.

A trade at that point not only impacts the player who needs to quickly move from one city to another but also can cause substantial upheaval to the family. A player’s wife is left to try and break the a lease, get things packed, find a new place to live, explain to the children why they have to suddenly leave their schools and friends and start over again because daddy’s new team is in a play-off run.

So the next time you see a player transaction stop and think about the human factor and how someone’s life was just completely flipped upside down all for the sake of making the play-offs. As a husband and a father I’m gaining a new appreciation of the challenges these players face off the field as well as on.

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