Some big names could potentially be traded at this year’s deadline.
The trade deadline is 37 days away. At this point in time, teams are in the process of identifying their status as either a buyer or a seller. Teams are thoroughly scouting players that could potentially be available. Let’s take a look at some of the high profile players who could change uniforms.
The Phillies’ ace is the best player available on the market. He is an established top of the rotation starter with an impressive postseason resume. His contract calls for 86 million over the next 3 1/2 years. While some teams may view this as a burdensome contract, this amount is a deep discount compared to what similar players would receive on the open market as a free agent.
Some are suggesting that the Phillies are asking for too much in return for Hamels. The Phillies do not need to send Hamels away as a salary dump. If a team is serious about acquiring Hamels, they will need to put together an appealing package of prospects. The Rangers, Yankees, Pirates, Blue Jays, Cubs, Dodgers, Astros and Cardinals are the likely destinations for Hamels.
Cueto is the second-best player on the trade market behind Cole Hamels. Cueto is a free agent at the end of the year and will purely be a rental to the team that acquires him. It is not certain that the Reds will trade him, but the wise thing for them would be to do so. They likely don’t have the cash to re-sign him and are in need of more players to surround Joey Votto. The Yankees, Dodgers, Royals, Astros and Giants are all contenders for his services.
Zobrist should be a hot commodity as he can play almost every position on the diamond. The A’s seem likely to sell as Billy Beane isn’t one to sit around and wait. Zobrist was recently activated from the DL following a knee injury. Expect teams to scout him heavily leading up to the trade deadline. The Cubs, Giants, Nationals, Cardinals and Mets should be among the clubs in hot pursuit.
It’s been no secret the Phillies have been actively trying to trade Papelbon for the past two years. It looks like this will finally be the year the Phillies are able to trade him. Papelbon is performing quite well and only has one more year left on his contract after this year. Look for the Phillies to facilitate a move by paying nearly half of his remaining contract. The Blue Jays, Cubs, Dodgers and Rangers could potentially be among the most interested teams.
Like teammate Ben Zobrist, Scott Kazmir seems destined to change uniforms by the trade deadline. He is a free agent at the end of the season and is having a tremendous season. Teams like the Yankees, Royals, Astros and Dodgers should be among the most interested.
For teams looking to upgrade the middle of their starting rotation, Leake would be a solid addition. He is less likely to move than his teammate Johnny Cueto, but it makes sense for the Reds to waive the white flag on this season and Leake is a free agent at the end of the year. The Yankees, Giants, Astros, Cubs, and Blue Jays could be interested.
The trade deadline should bring a flurry of activity this year. It is shaping up to be a sellers market, but those sellers have a lot to offer. Look for the Phillies, A’s and Reds to be active participants. Those teams have useful pieces for several contenders.
Edited by Emily Berman.
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