MLB Trade Rumors: 5 Best Available Players Remaining
Now that Seattle Mariners general manager Jeff Zduriencik has officially declared that the team will not be dealing defending Cy Young award winner Felix Hernandez, it's time to take a look at who the best remaining players available on the market are.
It's an eclectic mix of starting pitchers, bullpen guys and even one hitter.
Some of these guys might get moved by Sunday's July 31 trade deadline and some might not, but they are all available right now and should be among the top players in consideration.
5. Mike Adams
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San Diego Padres setup man Mike Adams is working on his third straight spectacular season, posting a 1.15 ERA and 0.72 WHIP in 47.0 innings thus far.
Hitters are batting just .152 against Adams so far this season and he's showing no signs of slowing down.
Adams can be of use to many contending teams and won't have to struggle with the transition from closer to setup man like other available relief pitchers might.
4. Joakim Soria
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The Kansas City Royals have started graduating many of the top prospects in what was considered the best farm system in baseball prior to the 2011 season.
However, they are not ready to compete for the American League Central division crown. For that reason it would be a smart move for the Royals to deal their former all-star closer for a couple more prospects.
Soria has been one of the top closers in baseball for some time now and should be able to fetch a high end prospect or two for Kansas City.
3. B.J. Upton
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After hitting .300 with 24 home runs and 82 RBI in 2007, B.J. Upton was viewed as the next up-and-coming star in the major leagues.
Since then, however, he has regressed in nearly every season at Tampa Bay and now the Rays are ready to move him.
Upton is still young enough to turn his career around and become an impact player with both the bat and the glove and he is the best hitter available on the market.
2. Heath Bell
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The San Diego Padres closer is the best available relief pitcher on the market right now.
Every team can use bullpen help and Heath Bell is there for the taking.
San Diego is not contending this year and—let's be honest—they probably will not contend next year either. Bell is unlikely to return to San Diego, so they are looking to move him at the deadline.
Since he is the best reliever available the Padres should be able to add a few more high end prospects.
1. Ubaldo Jimenez
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The Colorado Rockies are still taking offers for Ubaldo Jimenez—even though the asking price for the 27-year-old right hander is considered way too high.
Jimenez proved last year that when he is on his game he is easily capable of being the best starter in baseball.
With a fastball that sits in the mid-to-upper 90s and an occasionally faster breaking ball, Jimenez is extremely tough to hit.
He hasn't been nearly as good this season, but some think that may be because while the Rockies gave monster deals to their star hitters—Troy Tulowitzki and Carlos Gonzalez—Jimenez was left waiting for a bigger offer than his current small-time deal.
However, Jimenez is capable of pushing a starting rotation over the top, which is why he's the best player still available on the market.