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MLB Trade Rumors: The 7 Most Likely Deals to Occur This Offseason

Jonathan IrwinContributor IIOctober 18, 2012

MLB Trade Rumors: The 7 Most Likely Deals to Occur This Offseason

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    With a stunted free agent class, the MLB can expect plenty of trade rumors this offseason.

    The bar was set pretty high in July and August when many blockbuster trades were made. These huge moves played a hand in altering the MLB landscape.

    While such trades might not be on the docket for 2013, there should still be plenty of big deals and surprises. Here's a few of the likely stars who could be switching teams this winter.

Josh Johnson to Texas

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    With another season come and gone, the Texas Rangers' search for an ace continues.

    Back in July, the Rangers acquired Cubs ace Ryan Dempster. However, he didn't have the stuff to survive out of the National League, posting a 5.09 ERA and 1.435 WHIP in 12 starts for Texas.

    Coming off their failed experiment of a season, the Miami Marlins look to reload their team, but lack a strong farm system. That makes ace Josh Johnson the perfect trade chip.

    J.J. had a relatively strong return to the game, and for once in his career he looked healthy. His big arm, and the Rangers big farm system, makes this deal a perfect match.

An Arizona Outfielder Gets Traded to Pittsburgh

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    Could this be the year Justin Upton finally gets traded? Or any other D-Back outfielder for that matter.

    For years there's been talk of the Arizona Diamondbacks moving an outfielder. Yet, they continue to ask for more than teams are willing to give.

    Now, with pretty much anyone in that outfield for sale, 2013 seems like it could finally be the year.

    A smart choice for a trade partner would be the Pittsburgh Pirates. They're deep in pitching prospects, and could use the added offense—and defense—alongside Andrew McCutchen.

Chase Headley to Arizona

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    Despite the constant back-and-forth between San Diego Padres management, this might finally be the winter that Chase Headley gets traded.

    Headley is coming off his best season to date, batting .286/.376/.498 on the season with 31 home runs and 115 RBI. He also played a stellar third base, posting a 6.0 UZR.

    Looking to find a cornerstone for their lineup, Headley could be the perfect player for the Arizona Diamondbacks. He'd even help shore up a mediocre defense.

    San Diego would be apprehensive to trade within the division, but a deal built around Chris Johnson and one of Arizona's several pitchers could draw them in.

    Not to mention, a trade of Justin Upton could make this a three team deal, sending even more players the Padres' way.

Elvis Andrus to Tampa Bay

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    If the Rangers decide top prospect Jurickson Profar is ready for prime time, this is a trade that could have huge legs to it.

    Profar saw his first major league call-up in September, 2012. While he only played in eight games, it was just another stop on his meteoric rise through the minors.

    Profar might not be ready yet, but that doesn't mean the Rangers can't get prepared for the future. That could mean finding a stopgap for the first half of 2013, and dealing current shortstop Elvis Andrus.

    A reasonable suitor would be the Tampa Bay Rays. They've gotten nothing out of their shortstops, and could use an ideal leadoff man like Andrus. Not to mention they have the prospects to spare.

Ike Davis to Boston

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    With a big hole at first base, this is a rumor that's already gaining media coverage.

    Adrian Gonzalez is gone, and the Boston Red Sox need a power bat to fill the void. Ike Davis could be a perfect fit.

    Davis is young, plays good defense, has great power and is cheap. The perfect fit for a team looking for a quick rebuild, such as Boston.

    Meanwhile, they have a deep farm system with plenty of prospects they could send New York's way.

Seattle Prospects

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    The Seattle Mariners proved last winter they're not afraid to deal their young aces, trading Michael Pineda to the New York Yankees for Jesus Montero.

    Pitching remains a position of strength for the M's, with three of baseball's best arms in their farm system—Taijuan Walker, Danny Hultzen and James Paxton.

    Already anchored by Felix Hernandez, Seattle doesn't need a corp of four stud pitchers. With the Safeco fences coming in, management seems serious about building a competent lineup.

    And with holes at right field, first base and shortstop, it shouldn't be hard for the Mariners to find a suitable exchange for one of their top arms.

Alex Rodriguez to Somewhere

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    There's two different camps to this rumor.

    One camp, is that the exchange between Miami team owner Jeff Loria and New York president Randy Levine was sarcastic joking. The other camp, is that the Yankees will do anything to get rid of A-Rod.

    Despite the speed bumps in a possible deal—particularly money and egos—I register to the latter.

    With another horrific postseason performance, the Bronx Bombers have to be getting tired of Rodriguez's play. Not to mention he's on the wrong side of 30, with way too much money owed to him.

    Even with his reputation, if the Yankees can find a suitor for A-Rod, you better believe they'll do their best to offload him.

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