MLB Trade Rumors: 4 Potential Josh Willingham Suitors
The Oakland Athletics are in dead last in the AL West and will probably be trading many of their players within the next two weeks. Josh Willingham is at the top of the list of players set to leave Oakland by July 31st.
Buster Olney of ESPN writes that Willingham “is going to be traded at some point.” Willingham is in a very small group of available right-handed power bats.
Several teams have already called in on the outfielder. These are four of those potential suitors.
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The Pittsburgh Pirates have one of the feel-good stories of the 2011 season. They’re currently leading the NL Central, something that hasn’t happened since 1992—the last time they made the playoffs.
They’re looking to continue their success by adding a right-handed bat. Jerry Crasnick of ESPN has reported that Josh Willingham is one of the players the Pirates have checked in on.
GM Neal Huntington is open to trading as long as everything is evaluated long-term. There a good chance Pittsburgh will choose to look to their own system rather than others though. If they do end up making a deal, Willingham could be the guy they go for.
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The Philadelphia Phillies have one of—if not the—best starting rotation in baseball. They don’t need to make many moves in the pitching department but their bats could be improved.
A month ago, Buster Olney of ESPN tweeted the Phillies have had interest in Josh Willingham. They want another right-handed hitter, and Willingham could fit well in their outfield.
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The Phillies’ rival have a fantastic starting rotation too. They're also looking for a bat.
Jayson Stark of ESPN wrote earlier that Atlanta had checked in on Willingham though, so he’s still an option.
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The Cleveland Indians’ need for an outfield bat increased once Grady Sizemore got injured again. Now that he’s out, the Indians will have to start looking for a replacement.
Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports mentioned the Athletics when talking about Cleveland’s options.
While Morosi suggests Coco Crisp, Jon Heyman of Sports Illustrated says they have contacted the Athletics about Josh Willingham.
The Indians’ outfield started hurting once Shin-Soo Choo was placed on the disabled list. He underwent surgery on his left thumb and will miss at least two months. Cleveland has major outfield woes, and Willingham might be part of the answer.