With less than a week until Major League Baseball’s July 31 trade deadline, Jake Peavy remains a member of the White Sox. But how much longer will we be able to say that the veteran right-hander pitches for Chicago?
Where will Peavy be traded?
Jon Heyman of CBS Sports reports that the Red Sox and Cardinals are two teams with interest in acquiring Peavy before the calendar shifts to August. The scribe also points out that the Diamondbacks could be in the mix and that the Indians aren’t a fit for the 2007 National League Cy Young award winner.
Peavy is having a solid season for the AL Central cellar dwellers. Through 12 starts, he’s 7-4 with a 4.19 ERA. He has allowed 34 earned runs in 73 innings of work, but his 3.77 FIP and 3.65 xFIP suggest that he’s been better than his ERA shows. He’s also shown great command in 2013, as he’s walked just 15 batters this season.
The Cardinals and Red Sox have the third- and fourth-best rotations in baseball in terms of WAR this season, according to FanGraphs. Forgetting about where the two franchises rank among the other teams in the league for a second, there’s no question that Boston needs more assistance at the moment.
St. Louis has a strong rotation that doesn’t have many flaws right now. Chris Carpenter is trying to make his way back, but he will be skipping his next rehab start according to the Associated Press (h/t ESPN). Even without Carpenter taking the mound every five days, the Cardinals still have five good starters.
The Red Sox really only have four starters at the moment, as Clay Buchholz remains on the disabled list. Peter Abraham of The Boston Globe recently reported that the right-hander, who’s 9-0 on the year, could be out for another month. That doesn’t put Boston in a good position to make the postseason.
St. Louis and Boston could definitely use a pitcher like Peavy in their starting rotations down the stretch, and it will be interesting to see if either club—or one of the other 27 teams—is able to land him. Aside from Peavy, here’s the latest chatter on other players who could make a difference with new teams in the second half.
Kendrys Morales, Seattle Mariners
The Mariners are in an interesting spot at the moment. Entering Wednesday, they were still 10 games behind the Athletics for the AL West lead, but Seattle has recently caught fire. The club has won eight of its last 10 games, and now it’s up in the air if the Mariners should start dealing away some of its talent.
Kendrys Morales is one of the more valuable players on the team right now, and it seems unlikely that Seattle would trade him, according to Heyman:
little belief #mariners would trade kendrys morales now. theyve won 8 straight. plus, they can extend qualifying offer.— Jon Heyman (@JonHeymanCBS) July 24, 2013
Morales is having a strong season for Seattle in 2013, his first with the team. Through 95 games, the first baseman and designated hitter is hitting .282/.341/.466 with 15 home runs and 57 RBI. As a switch hitter, he’s the type of guy who contenders would love to get their hands on for a postseason run.
Heyman recently reported that the Rays had called the Mariners about acquiring Morales, and he also speculated that the Yankees and Rangers would be good trade partners for Seattle. It doesn’t appear the Mariners are going to be selling any of their guys—not just Morales—right now, though, per Heyman:
teams that have checked with #mariners lately say they're not selling at all right now. cant really blame 'em.— Jon Heyman (@JonHeymanCBS) July 24, 2013
The most important part of this situation, regarding Morales, is that he’s a free agent after this season. As Heyman pointed out earlier, Seattle could make him a qualifying offer for the 2014 season. If he accepts it, great. If not, then the Mariners get a draft pick. Seattle should be a winner whether it makes the playoffs or not.
Justin Ruggiano, Miami Marlins
A few weeks ago, the Marlins weren’t "all that motivated” to trade Justin Ruggiano, according to Juan C. Rodriguez of the Sun Sentinel. Now, however, it appears the outfielder could get dealt in the coming days. Jayson Stark of ESPN reports that there are around six teams interested in him.
Ruggiano doesn’t have a ton of trade value, as he’s really struggled this season. Through 83 games with the Marlins, he’s hitting .202/.281/.369 with 12 home runs and 32 RBI. He plays the outfield very well, though, and teams looking to add a right-handed bat at the deadline could take a chance on him.
There’s really no point in Miami keeping him on the active roster much longer. The team just promoted two of their top prospects, Christian Yelich and Jake Marisnick, who are both outfielders. With Giancarlo Stanton as the third outfielder, there really isn’t going to be much playing time for Ruggiano in the coming months.
The Rangers are interested in acquiring Ruggiano, per Stark, and Texas would likely use him as a platoon with David Murphy in left field. The Rangers outfielder hasn’t been much better than Ruggiano in 2013, as he’s hitting .224/.280/.371 with 10 homers and 32 RBI through 95 games. Texas would improve by dealing for Ruggiano.
All statistics in this article were obtained via FanGraphs unless otherwise noted and are current through July 23. All injury information was obtained via Baseball Prospectus and all contract information was obtained via Cot’s Contracts.