As the MLB trade deadline nears, several teams have key players that could make a great difference elsewhere. For the most part, they would be half-season rentals to be stronger playoff contenders. As part of these potential deals, these sellers will look to pick up top prospects for the near future. Take a look at some of the teams looking to trade away some of their players:
The Reds are playing in the extremely difficult NL Central and find themselves well below .500. Any hopes for a playoff run seem to be gone, and they have a lot of talent that is being chased after. Johnny Cueto is certainly gone, and joining him could be Aroldis Chapman, Jay Bruce, and Mike Leake. There doesn’t seem to be much room for improvement for this season, but they could really pick up some top prospect talent over the next few days.
For some time, it looked like the Tigers would be buyers at the break. They’ve been hovering around .500 and could be Wild Card contenders. However, recent reports have them going the opposite way and willing to trade away players. David Price and Yoenis Cespedes highlight their trade chips, which could ultimately change the entire structure of the trade deadline. All of a sudden, they become the new top players available at their respective positions.
So far out of any playoff contention, the Brewers have a lot of veterans, who could be playing elsewhere very soon. Adam Lind is enjoying one of his best seasons of his career and is a near guarantee to be dealt to a contender. They also have Carlos Gomez, Jean Segura, Aramis Ramirez, and Gerardo Parra, who all have garnered some attention from teams. At least one or two of them should be traded soon, if not all three. On the pitching side, Francisco Rodriguez and Mike Fiers may draw some interest from teams. They’ll certainly be sellers, but the extent is not really known.
After trading away some top players (Jeff Samardzija and Josh Donaldson) during the offseason, the A’s will look to continue their selling before the trade deadline. While many teams are looking for top pitching to add, Scott Kazmir flies under the radar. He’s been excellent with a sub 2.50 ERA and would come at a much better value than the other pitchers available. In addition, Ben Zobrist has extremely high value because he can be put into a lot of positions as a utility player. Teams looking for a bat will seek him out because of his versatility. Reliever Tyler Clippard could also be among others dealt from the team.
The Phillies’ season is essentially over, and it has been for a while. Cole Hamels has been on the trading block for the past few years, and once again now seems to be the time where he will actually be dealt. Unlike most pitching targets, Hamels is signed through 2018, so he’s more than just a one-time deal. In addition, Jonathan Papelbon stated he wants to play for a contender, and he’s still pitching great at 34. Outfielder Ben Revere is in the last year of his contract, and he continues to get on base. Teams looking for a solid contact hitter or extra outfield depth will be interested in what he has to offer.
San Diego Padres
The Padres sit at an interesting position like the Tigers because they are not too far out of the playoffs at around .500. However, James Shields, Craig Kimbrel, and Justin Upton all have been talked about highly as targets for other teams. Upton has been the biggest name so far and is considered to be one of the top outfielders available and is the surest to be gone. Padres’ fans haven’t seen much of him, as they just acquired him this past offseason. Kimbrel would be the next in line as a solid closer, even though he too just came in during the offseason. To trade Shields might be much tougher to trade because he’s just half a season into a 4-year, $75 million contract. Yet he provides a solid veteran arm to a team, as the Padres would probably have to offer some cash in the deal.