Josh Hader trade between Padres-Brewers signals more moves ahead

Here’s a trade-deadline logic puzzle. A team is an obvious contender—first place in its division and poised for a fifth consecutive playoff run. It has a few games of breathing room, but not a lot, and there are a few clear areas for its front office to address. The team could stand to add some more offense. An outfielder would be helpful. And, of course, what contender doesn’t want a little extra pitching depth?

Instead, this is the team’s first big move of Deadline Week: It trades its All-Star closer away to another playoff hopeful. He is among the best in the game—currently leading baseball in saves despite a recent stretch of uncharacteristic shakiness—with a year and a half to go until he reaches free agency. In return, this team receives that team’s closer, a reclamation project of a pitcher and two prospects.

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