Just after shipping Rich Harden to the Cubs, Billy Beane trades Joe Blanton to the Phillies? I mean, these seem like fine deals if your team sucks and you’re looking to rebuild for the future, but the Athletics are 51-44, only six games out of first. Seems like the time you want to be adding that one critical part, not dealing away the critical part to National League teams. I read Moneyball, and like anyone else who blogs about baseball, I think Billy Beane can leap tall buildings and travel through time and trade overpaid pitchers for prospects just before their arms go out, but a baseball team can’t compete without a starting rotation. Should be an interesting second half for anyone following the Athletics.