Marlins close to trading Nolasco?
With so much buzz surrounding Marlins starting pitcher Ricky Nolasco, there's a very good chance he'll be the first notable player traded. He's likely to make at least one more start with Miami—he pitches tonight against the Padres—as the Marlins wait and see if one of the interested teams steps up their trade proposal, according to Juan C. Rodriguez of the Sun Sentinel.
While I had the Orioles landing Nolasco in my recent "Ideal Trade Scenarios For All 30 Teams" piece, the Dodgers appear to be the front-runners for the 30-year-old Nolasco with the Giants, Padres and Rangers also in the mix. The Red Sox have also scouted Nolasco, according to Joe Frisaro of MLB.com.
Nolasco, who has allowed three earned runs or less in 12 of 16 starts, would solidify the back of the rotation for several contenders. The ideal trade for the Marlins would have the acquiring team taking on the remainder of his 2013 salary, an estimated $6 million, and sending back a quality prospect in return. If they can't find a team willing to do both, they'll have to find the best balance.
Mia surprisingly open to eating some of Nolasco's contract but only if prospect return significantly better than alternative deals— JIM BOWDEN (@JimBowdenESPNxm) June 27, 2013
The Dodgers and Red Sox would probably be the most willing to take on the remaining salary, although the Dodgers' secondary prospects—the ones not named Zach Lee, Joc Pederson or Corey Seager—might not as good as what the Red Sox could offer from a much deeper farm system.
White Sox listening on trade offers for everyone but Konerko and Sale?
According to Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com, the last-place White Sox, who are 32-43 and nine games out in the AL Central, are open to trading anyone but rotation ace Chris Sale and veteran Paul Konerko, who has a full no-trade clause anyways.
The most intriguing names that this development would put on the trade market include outfielder Alex Rios (.794 OPS, 11 HR, 13 SB), reliever Jesse Crain (0.52 ERA, 18 holds) and starting pitchers Jake Peavy (4.30 ERA, 67 IP, 15 BB, 66 K in 11 starts) and John Danks (4.68 ERA, 42.1 IP, 4 BB, 32 K in 7 starts).
Second baseman Gordon Beckham, designated hitter Adam Dunn, shortstop Alexei Ramirez and relievers Matt Lindstrom and Matt Thornton could also draw interest, which means that general manager Rick Hahn could be a busy man over the next five weeks.
The 32-year-old Rios would bring back the most in a deal. With the Marlins expected to hold on to Giancarlo Stanton, at least for this season, there won't be too many other outfield options available.
The Giants and Rangers would likely have interest. So would the Pirates and Royals, although neither team is as likely to take on the remaining amount of Rios' contract (estimated $6.5 million for remainder of 2013, $12.5 million in 2014, $1 million buyout for $14 million club option in 2015).
It might not be the ideal time to sell on Peavy and Danks; however, Peavy (fractured rib) isn't expected back from the disabled list until after the All-Star break so teams will be less willing to give up a whole lot. Danks is coming back from shoulder surgery and is guaranteed an estimated $50 million through the 2016 season. It would make more sense, in my opinion, to shop both in the winter if they finish the season healthy.
Garza's trade value rising
There's no secret that Matt Garza is on the trade block but he's only drawing up more interest and boosting his trade value with his recent performance. Since allowing nine earned runs on June 11th, the 29-year-old has allowed just two earned runs and 15 hits in 22 innings over his last three starts with five walks and 23 strikeouts.
The market for Garza includes just about every contending team so negotiations could take awhile unless a team steps up and offers a trade package that blows the others away. It could make sense to trade Garza before his next start, though, considering it would be tough to go out on a higher note than his last start (7 IP, ER, 8 H, BB, 10 K). Nick Cafardo of The Boston Globe thinks a deal will happen sooner than later.
Heavy traffic on Cubs righty Matt Garza. Should be dealt well ahead of trade deadline according to major league source.— Nick Cafardo (@nickcafardo) June 28, 2013
Peter Gammons tweeted earlier in the week about a rumor floating around involving Garza to the Padres for center field prospect Reymond Fuentes (.891 OPS, 23 SB in Double-A), who the Cubs' front office is very familiar with. The Padres, however, are said to prefer a pitcher who is under team control beyond this season, according to Corey Brock of MLB.com.
Expect the Cubs to receive a better return than what they got from the Rangers in last year's deadline deal involving Ryan Dempster. Garza's proven track record in the AL East is likely one of the reasons he'd have more value over Dempster as a short-term rental.
Marlins want to build around Giancarlo Stanton
Earlier in the week, I made a case for why the Marlins should trade Giancarlo Stanton now and included a look at three potential trade scenarios and what the 2015 Marlins would look like after each trade and what the roster would potentially look like if they kept him.
I also brought up several points for why they probably wouldn't want to trade him and that appears to be closer to what the Marlins are thinking as of now. Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports writes that they don't have any plans to trade the 23-year-old slugger, who will be eligible for arbitration for the first time this offseason and can't become a free agent until after the 2016 season.
This could be just posturing by the Marlins. In reality, there might be a deal out there that would be too good to pass up. But owner Jeffrey Loria doesn't likely have the patience to start a three-to-four year rebuilding plan. He is "hell-bent on winning in the near future", according to Rosenthal's sources, and keeping Stanton in the middle of the lineup is probably their best chance of doing that.
Yovani Gallardo trade market
In an interview with Anthony Witrado of The Sporting News, Brewers general manager Doug Melvin acknowledges that he's open to moving ace Yovani Gallardo. But the return, which will be much more than what teams are paying for free-agents-to-be like Garza and Nolasco, will have to "wow" him.
Gallardo, who has another year left on his current deal ($11.25 million in 2014) with a $13 million club option for 2015, can block trades to 10 teams. The Diamondbacks and Rockies, who aren't on the list, reportedly have interest.
Jayson Stark of ESPN.com was told by an NL executive that the Brewers would love to move him, citing his drop in velocity from mid-to-low 90s. The results have also been shaky, at best, in 2013.
The 27-year-old has a 4.20 ERA and only eight of his 17 starts have been "quality", meaning at least six innings pitched and no more than three earned runs allowed.
He appeared to have turned a corner when he allowed just three unearned runs over a three-start stretch from June 10th through June 20th but he was knocked out after four innings of his last start (4 IP, 3 ER, 8 H, 4 BB, 5 K), his shortest outing of the season.
Unless a team is willing to ignore his struggles this season, it's very unlikely that Melvin receives the trade package he would like. In other words, don't expect him to "sell low" on Gallardo.