When the Boston Red Sox and Los Angeles Dodgers matched up on the stunning trade that sent more than a quarter-billion dollars' worth of contract commitments west last year, reactions in the baseball world to what the Dodgers had done tended to take on a certain tone. "Risky" was on the nicer end of that scale, and words such as "gluttonous," "laughable" or simply "insane" were tossed around more often than not as the game struggled to comprehend the scale of what had happened.
For the Dodgers, it was an opportunity to jump-start a tattered organization that hasn't been to the World Series since 1988 and had suffered through years of neglect thanks to the personal problems of former owner Frank McCourt.
In Boston, it was seen as a chance to make a fresh start as the Red Sox continued on the path to 93 losses, their worst season since 1966.
One year later, as the Red Sox come to Dodger Stadium for a highly anticipated series this weekend, both clubs are in first place and looking toward October. It might have been a shocking deal when it happened, but it has turned out to be a win-win neither side would undo if it had the chance -- and it's a big part of the success both teams have had.