Photo: Wikimedia Commons
With July 31st right around the corner, the MLB’s hot stove is cooking once again.The baseball trade deadline is fast approaching, and as always, some big names are rumoured to be headed to brand new destinations.
Bullpen arms are the commodity that every team wants, so San Diego’s Heath Bell has to be considered the top player available.
Other teams are looking for big bats in the outfield, and Carlos Beltran of the Mets is the most coveted prize in that department.
At the 2011 All-Star Game, Bell stated the he didn't think he would be a Padre by season's end. He's right about that; San Diego is surely going to move him.
The fireballer would be an asset in Texas and Atlanta. The Phillies would love to have him too since Brad Lidge is fresh off of an arm injury, and there are concerns about other parts of their bullpen. San Diego's Mike Adam is also a target for these teams.
Possible Destinations: Philadelphia, Texas, Cardinals, Braves, Angels
Before the season began, most pundits expected the Mets to enter fire sale mode to solve their financial crisis. When the Mets started to play .500 ball, they decided that only Carlos Beltran, not Jose Reyes should be traded.
The six-time All-Star has had a great year and the San Francisco Giants could use his bat and his defence.
Possible Destinations: Rangers, Phillies, Giants, Braves, Red Sox
When Oakland GM Billy Beane becomes enamoured with a player, the ransom gets jacked up a bit.
Andrew Bailey is popular around the front office, and he could be a successful closer for years to come. Having said that, teams desperate for bullpen help may be willing to sell the farm for a championship run. The Rangers have the prospects, so we may see a trade that shakes the foundations of the AL West.
Possible Destinations: Rangers, Phillies (?)
Jimenez may have an electric arm, but it's prone to go haywire. Although he does walk almost four batters per nine innings of work, the rest of his splits aren't terrible. Perhaps playing for a contender will ground that arm a bit and make him a frontline starter again.
The Tigers would love to have him aboard, and their big park may provide a comfortable enough setting for Ubaldo to really practice pounding the strike zone.
Possible Destinations: Reds, Tigers, Yankees, Rangers, Red Sox
There have long been rumours about Rasums and Cardinals manager Tony LaRussa having a testy relationship. While that tidbit cannot be confirmed, we can safely say that Rasums has been a disappointment thus far in the bigs.
Even though he has been underwhelming to date, he still has upside, and the White Sox sorely need an outfielder.
Possible Destinations: White Sox, Nationals, Rays
Don't let the numbers fool you, Kuroda is solid. The Dodgers just haven't given him any run support for the past three season. He's surely fed up by now.
If either the Indians or the Red Sox decide that they do need another arm in the playoff race, Kuroda could be had for fairly cheap. Now, those are some teams that can score some runs.
Possible Destinations: Indians, Red Sox, Yankees, Tigers, Rangers
The ageless wonder is performing at a high level albeit from the most sedentary position on the baseball diamond: designated hitter.
While not much with the glove anymore, Johnny Damon's bat is still good and his contract is small. The White Sox could use him to replace Adam Dunn or, perhaps the Yankees would like him back for a second go-around.
Possible Destinations: White Sox, Yankees, Rangers
The Padres are actively shopping around their bullpen components, but what about starters? Aaron Harang's name has come up in several discussion with AL Central teams.
Kevin Towers may not want to move Harang. He's having one of the best seasons of his career, and teams aren't going to offer much more than middle-of-the-road prospects. Perhaps the Indians or Tigers will overbid for him.
Possible Destinations: Tigers, Indians, Twins, Yankees (?)
Arizona wants another arm to give them a shot at a late season playoff run, but they don't have the resources to get a Kuroda or a Harang. They may have to settle for Jason Marquis.
Marquis has a career ERA of 4.52, and it helps to watch him under the influence of a stiff drink, but maybe he has turned the corner in his career and could be an acceptable third starter on a slightly-above average team.
Possible Destinations: Arizona
Soriano isn't the player he once was, and his contract is one of the worst in all of baseball, but the thrill of a playoff hunt has made GMs do strange things before.
The Cubs want to get rid of Soriano as soon as possible and through practically any means necessary. A team that isn't strapped for cash and could use another 10 home runs added to their line-up may finally come calling before July 31st.
Possible Destinations: Nothing concrete yet, but the Yankees have the money and need a bat.
Upton is the second biggest outfielder name on the market behind Beltran, and he's not the worst second prize a team could get. He can play some defence, and his bat is known to get hot. He's also still young and we could see more out of him.
If the Mets don't want to trade within their own division, the Phillies may orchestrate a deal for Upton.
Possible Destinations: Royals, Giants, Phillies, Nationals
A popular rumour was the possibility of Felix Hernandez going to the New York Yankees.
Now, the Mariners are bad and need as much help as they can get, but they would need to offered the entire Yankees farm system and Brett Gardner for them to pull the trigger.
Sorry, it's not happening.
Possible Destinations: Seattle. He's staying.
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