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An interactive adventure through the trade deadline

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This trade deadline is one of the most boring in recent memory. However, there's good reason for that.

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

It's said every year, but this really has been the worst trade deadline in recent memory. The Cubs and A's trade at the beginning of the month was huge, but other than that it's been so barren the Dodgers getting Darwin Barney for a player to be named is probably in the top five moves.

The dying trade deadline is yet another consequence of the changes brought about in 2012's Collective Bargaining Agreement. Several seemingly innocuous things, draft budgets being set by how many picks you have, the ability to attach draft pick compensation to any player if they aren't willing to take a one year deal, the introduction of a second wild card and more have made teams more and more unwilling to do anything. While  the Dodgers can solve this problem simply by spending even more exorbitant amounts of money, a team like the Kansas City Royals is totally paralyzed by all these factors. To see how bad it's gotten, let's fire up the ol' telnet terminal and play a day in the life of Dayton Moore.

The Kansas City Royals GM Simulator
Copyright 2014 Infokuhn All Rights Reserved

Trade Deadline

West of desk

You are standing in an open office west of a white desk

>Sit

White Desk

In front of your comfy chair is a computer, a desk drawer, and a phone

>Inventory

James Shields, Kyle Zimmer, Raul Mondesi, assorted parts

>Trade James Shields

Are you sure? The introduction of a second wild card means you're only 2.5 games from a playoff spot despite being 53-51. Trading Shields also costs you a valuable draft pick, which will almost double your ability to spend next draft.

>No

White Desk

In front of your comfy chair is a computer, a desk drawer and a phone

>Acquire outfielder

19 teams are within five games of a playoff spot and consider themselves buyers! Four teams have no intention of winning in the near future and have nothing you want! Three teams have nothing you want due to general incompetence! Available outfielders include: Alex Rios

>Call Texas Rangers

"Hello, Jon Daniels here"

>Offer assorted parts for Alex Rios

"We're really hoping Alex takes the qualifying offer, the extra pick almost doubles the amount of money we can spend in the draft! We'd be willing to let him go for Kyle Zimmer"

>Hang up

>Open desk

Desk drawer

A standard drawer. Inside is some pens, two packets of Taco Bell mild sauce, and a bottle of scotch

>Take scotch

Taken

>Drink scotch

Mmmmm scotch

>Call Blue Jays

"Hello, Alex Anthopolous here!"

>Inquire about Liam Hendricks and Eric Kratz

"Really you want those guys? I guess we'll take....Danny Valencia?"

>Sure why not

>Wait four months

You have finished in third place!

You've scored 0 of 680 points!

You have kept your job for some reason!

Offseason

West of desk

You are standing in an open office west of a white desk

>Inventory

Kyle Zimmer, Raul Mondesi, Assorted parts, 40 million dollars, Mostly empty bottle of scotch

>Inquire about high end free agents

Since mid tier free agents have their value depressed with qualifying offers and players regularly have their first couple years of free agency bought out high end free agents have increased their demands!

Hanley Ramirez seeks 175 million

Max Scherzer seeks 175 million

James Shields seeks 125 million

>Acquire James Shields

You don't have that much money! Spiraling costs ensure you will never be able to sign elite talent through free agency, no matter how much you save!

>Inquire about mid tier free agents

There are very few of these as many of them learned their lesson from Kendrys Morales and Stephen Drew and accepted the qualifying offer. The mid tier free agents are more affordable, however they will cost you a valuable draft pick!

Ervin Santana seeks 50 million

Colby Rasmus seeks 40 million

>Acquire Colby Rasmus

Are you sure? These draft picks are the only way you can acquire elite talent! Losing an early pick slashes your draft budget by over 50 percent!

>No

>Inquire about low tier free agents

The near empty mid tier free agent market has caused low tier free agents to increase their demands!

Brandon McCarthy seeks 45 million

Jason Hammel seeks 45 million

>Inquire about trash heap

Wandy Rodriguez seeks 6 million

>Acquire Wandy Rodriguez

Wandy Rodriguez acquired! You have 34 million.

>Quit

Are you sure? You should do something with that 34 million

>Give Eric Hosmer a six year deal

Hosmer accepts! He is now entrenched at first base until he turns 30. Hopefully he will improve on that .700 OPS he had in 2014!

The 2018 free agent class has gotten weaker further driving up costs!

You have 0 dollars!

>Drink scotch

Mmmmm scotch.