Worst Trade In Recent Memory: Oakland Athletics

At the time, it actually looked like a pretty good trade for both sides, some even saying the Toronto Blue Jays gave up too much. 

However, now that all the dust's settled, it's pretty clear the Oakland Athletics lost this trade.

The trade occurred on November 28, 2014, when the Oakland Athletics traded their star third baseman Josh Donaldson to the Toronto Blue Jays in exchange for third baseman Brett Lawrie, pitcher Kendall Graveman, and minor league prospects Sean Nolin and Franklin Barreto.

At the time of the trade, Josh Donaldson was considered one of the best third basemen in the league. He had just come off a season in which he hit .255 with 29 home runs and 98 RBI, won a Gold Glove award, and finished fourth in the American League MVP voting.

The trade was widely criticized by fans and analysts, as Donaldson was seen as the face of the Athletics franchise and one of the best players in the league. Many felt that the return the A's received in the trade was not enough to justify giving up such a valuable player.

In hindsight, the trade has been widely regarded as a bad move for the Athletics. Brett Lawrie, who was seen as the centerpiece of the trade, struggled with injuries and inconsistency during his time with the team and was eventually released. Kendall Graveman was a solid pitcher for the A's, but he was never able to replicate Donaldson's impact on the team. He's now found success elsewhere.

Meanwhile, the minor league prospects Sean Nolin and Franklin Barreto never panned out as expected.

For the Blue Jays, Josh Donaldson went on to have a career year with in 2015, hitting .297 with 41 home runs and 123 RBI and winning the American League MVP award. He helped lead the Blue Jays to the playoffs for the first time in over two decades and became a fan favorite in Toronto.

Over his four seasons with Toronto, Donaldson slashed a strong .281/.383/.548, with 116 home runs, 316 RBIs, and 331 runs scored across 462 games.

Overall, the trade was a significant loss for the Athletics, as they gave up a star player in exchange for a group of players who were not able to come even close to replacing his production or impact on the team. Photo Credit: Peter G. Aiken-USA TODAY Sports