If your favorite team is battling for a playoff berth – or harboring dreams of rivalry – there’s a good chance they could use an extra starting pitcher or two to boost their rotation. Your favorite team is not alone, because there is no such thing as having too many quality starting pitchers, not when winning a title is the goal.
Getting that help, however, won’t be easy. The costs are high. Supplies are low. Think of the trade market as trying to find a cheap rental car or baseball / basketball cards are a retail store. This is probably not happening.
Cardinals president of operations John Mozeliak was looking for help in the market a few weeks ago, after ace Jack Flaherty landed on the IL, and told reporters about the experience on Monday: “We didn’t really see much there that we thought would make a difference.
Yeah. The pickings are thin and the prices are high. Not exactly a shopper’s paradise. Let’s break down the market.
Hey, we’re fine! No offer now
Once upon a time the Reds seemed almost likely to part ways with one or the other Sonny Gray or Luis Castillo, or maybe even both. But now? They are 15-10 in June and have a shot at the NL Central title, which would be first in a row in the playoffs since the Big Red Machine days in the mid-1970s. There are still six of them. behind the Brewers, but for now it seems unlikely the Reds will ship either pitchers anytime soon. A bad stretch in the star break could change that, however.
Same thing for Max Scherzer. The future free agent was going to be the prize for this trade deadline, a veteran three-time winner of Cy Young who still throws at an elite level. In anticipation of the inevitable trade rumors, his agent, Scott Boras, went so far as to say that Scherzer would need an extension to waive his non-trade rights. But the Nationals had a glorious June, dropping a 17-9 record to move up to second in the NL East, three games away from a Mets team struggling to find offense. . Same as the Reds – they probably don’t sell unless things fall apart.
Oh, and we weren’t expecting much from the Giants this year, right? The idea at the start of the season was that Kevin Gausman, who accepted the team’s extended qualifying offer last offseason, would be traded if he had a solid season. A quick glance at the leaderboard shows why this won’t happen. The Giants are one of the best teams in baseball, and Gausman would be Cy Young’s top contender if Jacob deGrom didn’t exist.
Maybe in good health?
The most famous un-officially-a-no-hitter no-hitter this year belongs to Madison Bumgarner, a gem of seven innings against the Braves at the end of April. It was part of a brilliant streak that produced a 0.90 ERA in five starts. Since then? A 10.13 ERA in four starts and his current place on the IL with shoulder issues. He shouldn’t be away for too long, but no one trades for a starter with a sore shoulder.
John means was sizzling to start the season, throwing a hit and posting a stellar start after a stellar start. He is in the club’s control until 2025, which means if the Orioles decided to move him for the right offer – that should be a ransom – he would be the type of addition that wins now, winning later than many. forward-thinking teams crave for. Remember how the White Sox landed Eloy Jimenez for a few years from Jose Quintana? Well Means is on IL with a shoulder issue and should be coming out during the star break.
Matthew Boyd is another southpaw with a lot of advantages and a bit of club control (he is eligible for refereeing for the last time this offseason, then may be a free agent after the 2022 season). Like Means, he was sailing with a solid year of rebound – 3.44 ERA in 13 starts after scoring 6.71 in 12 starts in 2020 – but like Means, he’s on the IL for at least the All-Star break. (tendonitis / inflammation in his left arm).
And, yet another launcher that’s off to a good start but now on the IL: Michael pinedaThe career of has rebounded in Minnesota, where he has posted a 3.86 ERA in 42 starts since 2019, including a mark of 3.70 in 2021. But he has been on the IL since June 14 with tension in the air. ‘forearm, although it’s probably back before Means or Boyd.
James paxton signed a one-year contract with the Mariners this offseason. It seemed like a good fit; the big southpaw was returning to his baseball home, where he would jumpstart his career and perhaps bring back a decent prospect or two when he was finally traded. Nope. He made a start, faced five batters and had to leave. Tommy John’s surgery ended his season.
So who is actually available and healthy?
Here are seven pitchers that could be moved at some point over the next month or so.
1. Kyle Gibson, Rangers: This is Gibson’s ninth year in the greats, and he’s never been so good. He has a year left on his contract, a $ 7 million theft if he launches like that. Gibson, a right-hander who played his college ball in Mizzou, leads the AL with his 2.00 ERA. In a season where starting pitchers regularly check after five innings, Gibson has lasted at least six full frames in 12 of his 15 starts, including at least seven five times.
It is the market price right now, and someone will have to pay too much to have it. Remember, however, that the Rangers had a similar situation last year on the trade deadline with Lance Lynn – a very effective pitcher with a year left on his contract – and they ended up trading him. than in the off-season.
2. Danny Duffy, Royal: He also spent time on the IL, missing a few weeks with a forearm problem. Duffy was stellar before going on the set, posting a 1.94 ERA in seven starts. The Royals slowly got him back into the mix. He is a free agent after this season, and it is not excluded that the Royals retain him at the right price. It’s also not crazy to think that they would trade him now, get a few prospects in return, and then try to bring him back as a free agent after the season.
3. Jon Gray, Rockies: He’s a free agent after this year, so he’s almost certain to be moved. The Rockies’ quest to get there was boosted when Gray came back from a stint on the IL and pitched five white innings, registering 10 strikeouts in Milwaukee against the first-place Brewers. For the season, he’s got a 3.97 ERA in 13 starts, and he’s actually been better in Colorado (3.25 ERA) than on the road (5.32 ERA).
4. Merrill Kelly, Diamondbacks: Kelly is a unique story. He didn’t make his MLB debut until he was 30; after struggling in the minors, he found his reliable starter pace in Korea. The Diamondbacks signed him ahead of the 2019 season on a three-year contract with an option for 2023 ($ 5.25 million). He’s had a few rocky stretches in 2021, but he’s allowed just one run in his last two starts, covering 13 innings.
5. German Marquez, Rockies: He’s less likely to move than Gray, mainly because he’ll cost more and the Rockies don’t have to move him. Marquez is under contract for $ 26 million, in total, for 2022-2023, with a club option of $ 16 million ($ 2.5 million buyout) for 2024. He has an ERA of 3.99 and a PIF of 3.51 this year; his walk rate is up, but his strikeouts match his career average (8.9 for nine).
6. Tyler Anderson, Pirates: He’s not the guy you trade for as a playoff ace, but he’s a guy who could help you get there. His ERA isn’t great (4.75), but look at Anderson this way: When he starts, there’s a good chance your team will be in the game in the second half of the contest. He’s only allowed three more earned runs in his 15 starts, and he’s lasted at least five innings every time he’s started a game. What more do you want from a No. 4 or 5 starter if you’re looking for a playoff berth?
7. Mike Minor, Royals: The 33-year-old is expected to earn $ 10million in 2022, with a $ 13million club option ($ 1million buyout) for 2023. His ERA this year isn’t pretty (5.12), but his other numbers are not bad. For example, his 4.03 FIP, 9.3 K / 9, and 3.48 K / BB numbers are all better than what he posted for the Rangers in 2019, when he had a 3.59 ERA. and was part of the AL All-Star team.