The calendar reads August, meaning the MLB trade deadline has passed. That does not, however, mean clubs have no method of bolstering their roster before the postseason.
Trading can still occur, but it just must funnel through the waiver system. Teams can place a player on revocable trade waivers. If he’s claimed, the organization has 48 hours to strike a deal, relinquish his rights or pull him off waivers.
Guys who clear waivers unclaimed can be shopped on the trade market. Of course, a truly desirable commodity won’t escape the process without any of the other 29 teams biting.
No superstars frequent this list, and a majority of these position players are laboring through a tumultuous season. These high-priced veterans will likely stay put, but a couple names from uncompetitive squads may get bartered before August 31, the last day for any acquired players to become eligible for the new team’s postseason roster.
Before getting down to business, remember that although the title is “Best Available Hitters,” these batters play defense as well. That factors into these rankings. Contracts were also considered, as an average hitter doesn’t provide his club any value if he’s earning $20 million.
Hitting is hard to come by these days, so gambling on a besieged veteran could make a difference in September and October. Don’t expect a slew of action similar to July 31’s trade deadline, but one or two of these batters could change uniforms.