MLB Trade Rumors: The Players Who Could Become MLB's Carmelo Anthony in 2011

Adam MacDonald@adammacdoAnalyst IIMarch 1, 2011

MLB Trade Rumors: The Players Who Could Become MLB's Carmelo Anthony in 2011

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    Carmelo Anthony has been one of the most talked-about figures in sports in 2011. The saga that led to his eventual departure from Denver was incredible. As was the New York Knicks' pursuit of him and the package they surrendered to the Nuggets in the resultant 13-piece, three-team trade.

    So, could the story repeat itself in the upcoming baseball season? Here, we take a quick look at five candidates for the role of Anthony—players who could give up on their team, demand a trade, or both, before the July 31st trading deadline.

Michael Young

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    Young is perhaps the most obvious candidate for a Carmelo Anthony-like performance in 2011.

    The long-time Rangers' third baseman lost his starting role at the hot corner after the defending AL champions signed free agent Adrian Beltre in the offseason. Unhappy with the prospect of a season spent as the full-time designated hitter, only playing in the field a handful of games at the corner infield spots, Young requested a trade.

    Weeks later, Young is still with the Texas Rangers. At least so far this Spring, he appears to be handling himself like the clubhouse leader everyone has come to expect. However, it remains to be seen whether he will be quite as happy after three months at the DH spot.

Miguel Cabrera

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    "Don't you know who I am?" is the stereotypical response from a celebrity when he has been stopped by the police, but it is still surprising to hear of someone actually saying it.

    Still, that is what Cabrera reportedly cried after being pulled over for drunk driving. He then proceeded to drink more, whilst the officer was still there. It was the latest in a long line of unflattering news stories involving the Tigers' slugger.

    Despite repeated claims he is turning over a new leaf, he has shown he cannot. The step from 'clubhouse distraction' to 'I'm not playing so you might as well trade me' is a very short hop indeed.

Jose Reyes

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    The Mets are a franchise on the brink in some respects. They are still not good enough to make a run in the NL East, and now they can add their owners' financial difficulties to the mix.

    Another problem lies at short.

    Jose Reyes is a great player, but the chances of him staying in New York past the end of his contract are slim. Almost every report on the subject has either the team or Reyes himself talking about leaving or being traded.

    It would not be the most shocking thing to happen in 2011 if Reyes demanded a trade, although the Mets are far more likely to acquiesce than the Nuggets were.

Carlos Zambrano

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    Whether it is losing it with umpires or throwing equipment around in the dugout, one gets the strong suspicion that Carlos Zambrano has never been happy in Chicago. The stories about whether or not he will retire in 2013 will not go away. Nor will the rumors about a trade to the Yankees.

    Zambrano is purported to have a full no-trade clause. If the Cubs have another poor season and he is still not content, he could pull a Melo.

Manny Ramirez

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    He has done it before.

    But that is just Manny being Manny.

    In July 2008, the final season of an eight-year contract with the Red Sox, Ramirez decided that he did not want to play in Boston anymore and stopped playing. He took the field every game, yes, but could barely motivate himself to run to first base.

    The Sox put up with his antics for years, but chose to find them charming. This was the last straw, though, and they traded him to the Dodgers. Ramirez went on to prove that his lacklustre play was indeed just because he was in a huff, as he finished the season batting almost .400 with Los Angeles.

    Now he is in Tampa, a team unlikely to finish higher than third in the AL East. Would anyone be surprised to see him cry for a trade in midseason?