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MLB trade deadline passes quietly

The Boston Red Sox got Jake Peavy late Tuesday. On Wednesday, the Baltimore Orioles snagged Bud Norris, while the Arizona Diamondbacks shipped Ian Kennedy to the San Diego Padres. And that was about it for a quiet deadline that saw few impact players move, despite several teams seemingly needing improvement. Of course, there's no guarantee a midseason acquisition will make a difference, while top prospects can change franchises -- or at least provide years worth of value.

Which of these teams will most regret not making a(nother) move at the trade deadline?

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    19%
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    17%
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    23%
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    28%
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    13%

Discuss (Total votes: 94,397)

  • How many impact players will be moved through post-deadline waiver trades?

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      24%
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      44%
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      32%

    Discuss (Total votes: 9,655)

  • Which best reflects how you feel about the MLB trade deadline?

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      53%
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      47%

    Discuss (Total votes: 9,794)

  • Will the Orioles (59-48, 5 GB AL East, .5 G up for second wild-card spot) make the playoffs?

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      68%
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      32%

    Discuss (Total votes: 22,353)

  • What do you make of Ian Kennedy's (3-8, 5.23 ERA) struggles this season?

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      38%
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      62%

    Discuss (Total votes: 9,425)

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Tom Pennington/Getty Images

Chris Davis' power outage?

Chris Davis looked like he was on pace to challenge Roger Maris' old home run record, but that was before he participated in the Home Run Derby. Davis has gone 31 plate appearances without a home run, and since June 1 has only put up a .320 OBP. He was a major reason why the Orioles were in the hunt in the first half, but a Davis without power isn't going to help Baltimore hold on to a playoff spot. Meanwhile, teammate Manny Machado (.271/.293/.397 with 41 strikeouts since June 1) isn't picking up Davis' slack.

  • What do you make of Chris Davis' seven-game home run drought?

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      29%
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      71%

    Discuss (Total votes: 28,686)

  • The Home Run Derby participants have hit only six home runs combined since the contest. How much does being in the Home Run Derby negatively affect a player's performance in the second half?

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      28%
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      44%
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      28%

    Discuss (Total votes: 12,229)

  • Which struggling Orioles player should fans be more worried about?

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      67%
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      33%

    Discuss (Total votes: 11,739)

  • Will the Orioles (57-46, 4 games behind in AL East, 0.5 games ahead in wild-card standings) make the playoffs?

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      64%
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      36%

    Discuss (Total votes: 11,604)

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Where is the Rally Squirrel when you really need him?

The polls have closed, our Battle of the Uniforms is officially over and the No. 1-seeded St. Louis Cardinals wound up suffering their toughest defeat since at least the final three games of last season's National League Championship Series -- and perhaps as far back as the 1985 World Series. Cardinals fans can't blame this one on a bad call by Don Denkinger, either. The Baltimore Orioles decisively beat the Cardinals in the championship round -- also known as the Battle of the Birds -- receiving 59 percent of vote compared to 41 percent for the Cardinals.

#UniBattle

St. Louis fans must be getting really tired of losing to teams with orange-and-black uniforms.

The Cardinals weren't the only high seed to disappoint, though. All the most famous classic uniforms -- the Yankees' pinstripes, the Dodgers' blue, the Tigers' Old English D, the two Cardinals balanced on a bat -- fell short in the end, while the lesser-heralded Orioles go home the winners.

Which is not to say the Orioles are undeserving champions. Far from it.

Baltimore's uniform has some great style features, beginning with those wonderful orange and black colors (always an outstanding look) and extending to the great cartoon Oriole logo on the cap (much preferable to the ornithologically correct version). It's a classic uniform that looked great on Brooks Robinson, Frank Robinson and Jim Palmer, and it still looks great on Adam Jones, Matt Wieters and Chris Davis.

On the other hand … can we talk about those home caps with the white-panel front?

This is a design style from the fashion-challenged late '70s and early '80s, and it still looks just as bad as it did then. Manager Buck Showalter famously griped about Ken Griffey Jr. wearing his cap backward in the '90s (those darn kids today!), but he could improve his team's look by loosening up and ordering all his players to wear their cap backward.

Apparently, though, our voters either like that cap style or love the rest of the uniform so much that they overlooked it. Despite being seeded 13th because of those caps, the Orioles beat higher-ranked uniforms in every round on their way to the championship.

Not even Jeffrey Maier could have slowed Baltimore's run.

And, hey, maybe the Orioles could wear their new crown instead of that cap. And if not, well, at least the rest of the uniform is outstanding.

So, congratulations, Baltimore fans. Our fashion police have declared your team the best-dressed in baseball. Here's hoping the Orioles are also baseball's best-dressed team come October and the postseason.

--Jim Caple

Battle of the Uniforms: Championship


(1) Cardinals vs. (13) Orioles

Audubon would have loved this championship.

SportsNation

Which set of uniforms is best?

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    41%
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    59%

Discuss (Total votes: 147,418)

Battle of the Uniforms seedings

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As fans of the comedy series "Portlandia'' know, the secret to merchandising is to slap a bird on it. And apparently, the same holds true for baseball uniforms.

After four rounds of voting, tigers, fish, elephants, snakes, astronauts, seafarers, gun-toting officers of the law, buccaneers, heavenly bodies, Native Americans, pinstriped Northeners and even two pairs of colored socks are all gone. Our Battle of the Uniforms will finish with the Battle of the Birds.

#UniBattle

The No. 1-seeded Cardinals, who have as iconic a St. Louis design as the Gateway Arch or a bottle of Bud, beat their longtime rival, the Chicago Cubs, in the final round of the National League voting, 54 percent to 46 percent.

Meanwhile, the Cinderella team of the American League bracket upset yet another higher-seeded team in the AL championship. By a margin of 3,103 votes, fans declared they prefer the orange and black Baltimore Orioles over the traditional uniform worn by everyone from Babe Ruth to Derek Jeter. Or perhaps fans just hate the Yankees' pinstripes.

Whatever the reason, it's the Cardinals versus the Orioles for the title of baseball's best uniform. Bird watchers should get their binoculars out for this ornithological fight, though Toronto fans are probably wondering why their colorful Jay was found wanting.

This is serious business, so to make sure that everyone gets a chance to take a long, careful look at these two uniforms and judge the colors, logos, caps and overall style of both home and road uniforms, our polls will be open throughout the weekend. You can cast your vote up until noon ET Monday, when we will declare the winner.

So good luck Cardinals and Orioles. May the better uniform win. And remember voters, this isn't about who actually wears the uniforms but the uniforms themselves.

--Jim Caple

Note: Championship-round poll closes at noon ET Monday.

Mobile users: To vote, click here.

Battle of the Uniforms: Championship


(1) Cardinals vs. (13) Orioles

Audubon would have loved this championship.

SportsNation

Which set of uniforms is best?

  •  
    41%
  •  
    59%

Discuss (Total votes: 147,418)

Battle of the Uniforms seedings

Comment »


We've now reached the final four. Or, if you prefer, we've reached the league championship series.

#UniBattle

Either way, the Battle of the Uniforms is now in the home stretch (or as a malapropism-prone boss of mine once liked to say, "the home run stretch"). In the American League, the Orioles are facing the Yankees, and the National League crown has come down to the Cubs and the Cards.

The seedings, done by Jim Caple and myself, have largely proven accurate. Three of the final four teams were seeded either No. 1 or No. 2 in their respective leagues, which means our uni assessments are largely in line with yours. The lone outlier is Baltimore, which was seeded 13th but upset the top-seeded Tigers.

I'll admit it: I was kind of hoping for a rogue uniform design to make it to the semifinals, just to make things interesting. The Diamondbacks, say, or the Marlins. And I was seriously rooting for the A's to upset the Yanks (they came thisclose). In the end, though, the classic designs have won. And that makes sense: The classics are classic for a reason.

The cool thing about the Battle of the Unis is that several on-field rivalries have been echoed at the ballot box. Wednesday we had the Yankees just eking out a victory of the Red Sox (whose fans were no doubt chanting "Yankees suck!" as they clicked on the Sox icon), and now we have a classic National League matchup, as Chicago and St. Louis face off for Senior Circuit supremacy.

So who's going to advance to the uniform World Series? You folks get to decide that. But I'll say this: I'm voting for the teams with the feathers.

--Paul Lukas

LCS-round polls close at 9 a.m. ET Friday, and the championship round begins shortly thereafter.

Mobile users: To vote, click here.

Jim Caple bracket: American League


(2) Yankees vs. (13) Orioles

The Birds have upset three teams so far, but can they knock off the Pinstripers for the AL title?

SportsNation

Which set of uniforms is best?

  •  
    41%
  •  
    59%

Discuss (Total votes: 36,353)

Paul Lukas bracket: National League


(1) Cardinals vs. (2) Cubs

These two teams have always had an on-field rivalry. Good to see that's extending to their uniforms.

SportsNation

Which set of uniforms is best?

  •  
    54%
  •  
    46%

Discuss (Total votes: 36,237)

Battle of the Uniforms seedings

Comment »