With a flurry of trade action already occurring, there will be a number of teams that now feel the pressure to make a move before the 2012 MLB trade deadline.
There are a number of top players who could be dealt this summer, but the addition of the second Wild Card may make more teams buyers instead of sellers. This could drive up the price for a number of players.
While there are a number of teams interested in some of the top trade targets, they are not all great fits from the players' perspective. This is especially true for guys that are signed for longer than just this season.
For the majority of his career, Josh Johnson has proven that he can be an outstanding pitcher when he is healthy. However, he has had issues staying on the field.
Johnson has been healthy in 2012, but he has struggled for the Miami Marlins, going 5-7 with a 4.35 ERA. The Boston Red Sox have scouted Johnson and may be interested in acquiring him (h/t Nick Cafardo).
Boston is not a great fit for Johnson because he would have to face much tougher hitters in the American League East compared to those that he faces in the National League East.
The Oakland Athletics have been a big surprise this season and they are looking to find a way into the playoffs. They need an improvement at third base and they have an interest in Chase Headley, according to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports.
Oakland would not be an ideal fit for Headley. He would benefit from staying in the National League and moving to a team that has a ballpark that allows him to showcase his abilities.
The New York Mets bullpen has been absolutely disastrous and it has cost them more than a few games this season, so it should come as no surprise that the team is looking for relievers.
Jonathan Broxton has been linked to the Mets by Danny Knobler of CBS Sports. While Broxton will likely help the Mets bullpen, it does not seem like a good fit based on where the team is headed.
Matt Garza will be one of the best pitchers available this summer and he has a number of suitors. One of them is surprising. According to Danny Knobler of CBS Sports, the Kansas City Royals are interested in Garza.
This would be an odd fit for both parties. The Royals likely will not be competitive until 2014 which is when Garza would leave. Garza would likely perform well in Kansas City, but he might be dealt again before the 2013 MLB trade deadline.
The Seattle Mariners are in a rebuilding mode, so it does not make sense for them to go after a big-name player that could become a free agent after the year. However, they may be doing just that.
Stephen Drew has a mutual option for 2013 and the Mariners could try to acquire him, according to Bob Nightengale of USA Today. This would not be a great fit for Drew because he would not have much protection in the Mariners' lineup.
Wandy Rodriguez has been a good pitcher over the past few years and he will be on the market at the trade deadline this year. Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports has mentioned that the Detroit Tigers could be a fit for him.
However, Rodriguez may not be a good fit in Detroit. Facing a designated hitter and stronger lineups may cause Rodriguez's ERA to balloon above the 4.50 mark.
It is starting to seem more and more likely that Cole Hamels will sign an extension with the Philadelphia Phillies now that talks have gotten more intense between the two sides (h/t Jim Salisbury of CSN Philly).
There is still the possibility that Hamels is traded if he does not sign an extension. Ken Davidoff of the New York Post notes that the New York Yankees are keeping an eye on Hamels. The Phillies starter would not be a great fit in New York because of the fact that more than 57 percent of balls hit off of Hamels this year have been either line drives or fly balls, according to FanGraphs.
If James Shields is put on the trade market he will be a very popular commodity. Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports has identified the Toronto Blue Jays as a possible landing spot for Shields.
While Shields is familiar with the American League East, the Blue Jays are not a great fit for him. The Jays have a number of other starting pitchers, and if Shields has another season like he did in 2010, then it would be tough to see him sticking in Toronto if he was dealt there.
As the Milwaukee Brewers continue to fade further and further out of contention, it becomes more and more likely that they will look to deal Zack Greinke. Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports has identified the Los Angeles Angels and the Atlanta Braves as two of his possible suitors.
Of the teams interested in Greinke, the Braves would likely be the worst fit. They should reach the playoffs this season, but Greinke may struggle at Turner Field. During the two starts that Greinke has made there during his career he has given up seven earned runs in 11 innings.
Shane Victorino has the ability to be a major spark plug for any team that acquires him this summer. He could help push a team into the playoffs.
Victorino is a free agent after the 2012 season which means that he will likely only be dealt to a contender. Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports has reported that the Miami Marlins have an interest in Victorino. Considering that the Marlins have started to trade players, Victorino would not be a good fit in Miami.