Trades and Waivers Explained

3 Aug

_aug2.jpgA lot of these trade terms can be confusing.  With a little help from and I’ve tired to put together a simplified look into how all this stuff works.  Now that July 31st has passed can the Phillies still make a trade?  Yes!  Is it likely? Who knows?!?  I know it confuses the heck out of me sometimes.  So let’s give it a try, and if you still don’t get it, who the hell cares anyway.

  • Simple Trades

Teams may trade only players currently under contract, except those
players who have been drafted in the last year. From the end of the
previous World Series through July, trades between two
or more major league teams may freely occur at any time, hence the July 31st trade deadline. In August,
trades may only be made after all players in the trade clear waivers (we’ll get to waivers) or
are not on 40-man rosters. Players acquired after August 31 are
ineligible for the postseason roster unless they replace an injured

  • Designated for Assignment

A player who is designated for assignment is immediately removed from
the 40-man roster. This gives the team time to decide what to do with
the player while freeing up a roster spot for another transaction, if
needed. Once a player is designated for assignment, the team has ten
days to do one of the following things: the player can be traded, the
player can be released, or the player can be put on waivers and,
provided he clears, outrighted to the minors. A player who is
outrighted to the minors is removed from the 40-man roster but is still
paid according to the terms of his guaranteed contract. A player can
only be outrighted once in his career without his consent.

  • Waivers

Any player under contract may be placed on waivers at any
time. If a player is waived, any team may claim him. If more than one
team claims the player from waivers, the team with the weakest record in
the player’s league gets preference. If no team in the player’s league
claims him, the claiming team with the weakest record in the other
league gets preference. In the first month of the season, preference is
determined using the previous year’s standings.

If a team claims a player off waivers and has the viable claim as
described above, his current team (the “waiving team”) may choose one of
the following options:

  • arrange a trade with the claiming team for that player within two
    business days of the claim; or
  • rescind the request and keep the player on its major league roster,
    effectively canceling the waiver; or
  • do nothing and allow the claiming team to (1) assume the player’s
    existing contract, (2) pay the waiving team a waiver fee, and (3) place
    the player on its active major league roster.

If a player is claimed and the waiving team exercises its rescission
option, the waiving team may not use the option again for that player in
that season. If no team claims a player from waivers in three business
days, the player has cleared waivers and may be assigned to a
minor league team, traded, or released outright.

The waiver “wire” is a secret within the personnel of the Major
League Baseball clubs; no announcement of a waiver is made until a
transaction actually occurs. Many players are often quietly waived
during the August “waiver-required” trading period to gauge trade
interest in a particular player. Usually, when the player is claimed,
the waiving team will rescind the waiver to avoid losing the player
unless a trade can be worked out with the claiming team.

The Phillies have made Waiver Moves over the past few years….

They got Jaime Moyer and cash from the Seattle Mariners for Andrew
Baldwin and Andrew Barb on Aug. 19, 2006.

I’m not sure if this helps anybody, but I hope so. 


3 Responses to “Trades and Waivers Explained”

  1. devilabrit August 3, 2010 at 5:45 pm #

    Phillies normally seem to get something this time of year… just hope it’s bullpen help and maybe a replacement for Lidge….


    Phillies Outside

  2. thomasox August 3, 2010 at 6:39 pm #

    Nice work on this. It helps a lot. Hope all is well.

    ps. hope the injury to Howard isn’t too serious. Damn.

  3. phillies_phollowers August 4, 2010 at 12:08 pm #

    That is a very nice description :O) You should do a draft one too! Explain Rule 5 and the regular draft…so many things go into building a team, it is hard to keep up with it all.


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