MLB Trade Speculation: 5 Pitchers Who Will Be Dealt over the Winter

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MLB Trade Speculation: 5 Pitchers Who Will Be Dealt over the Winter
Hannah Foslien/Getty Images

As we enter the final stretch of the season, with just over a month's worth of games remaining, the contenders have been identified.

The Phillies, Yankees, Red Sox, Braves, Brewers and Tigers are all on cruise-control towards the playoffs, while the Rangers and Angels compete for the AL West, and the Diamondbacks and Giants fight for the NL West. 

Teams like the Indians, White Sox, Rays and Cardinals have outside chances if they can forge a late-season rally, but odds are that they, along with the remaining 16 major league teams, will not play October baseball in 2011.

Fans of those teams, and maybe even fans of the contenders, will be looking ahead to the winter offseason. The Hot Stove will heat up once again, with yet another class of free agents set to hit the market.

This year's class is packed with brand names. 

Jose Reyes, Jonathan Papelbon, Jimmy Rollins, Carlos Beltran, Heath Bell, Lance Berkman, Prince Fielder and, yes, Albert Pujols will be up for grabs among others.

Notice anything missing from that short list?

No, there are not many top-of-the-rotation-type starting pitchers set to become free agents this year.

C.J. Wilson, Hiroki Kuroda and Mark Buehrle will likely benefit from this, as will potential Japanese imports Hisashi Iwakuma and Yu Darvish. But it remains to be seen how highly teams think of them.

If teams are in desperate need of starting pitching, they may need to turn to the trade market to find themselves a decent option that they won't need to overpay for. 

So, let's see which pitchers are likely to be dealt during the upcoming offseason.

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