Tobias Funke (of Arrested Development fame) isn't the only person having a fire sale as numerous MLB teams looking past lost 2017 regular seasons will trade off their veteran assets in return for new prospects and brighter futures (hopefully).
Here's a look at the latest buzz surrounding three Miami Marlins and the most coveted relief pitcher on the market.
The Miami Marlins are playing out the string as they currently sit 10 games behind the Colorado Rockies, who own the second National League wild-card spot. It's been a disappointing season for the Fish, and now it looks like they will start a new era.
One veteran who may be on his way out is second baseman Dee Gordon, who has 32 stolen bases this year in addition to a .290 batting average. Per Bob Nightengale of USA Today, two teams are showing interest:
Gordon is a much better fit on Toronto than Philadelphia, who has the worst record in baseball and should look to build up its farm system.
The Blue Jays endured a calamitous 6-17 start and are somehow still in contention for an American League playoff spot because the New York Yankees have gone 9-21 in their last 30 games and are tenuously holding on to the last wild-card berth.
The Jays sit just 4.5 games back and are getting healthier at the right time with former MVP Josh Donaldson, shortstop Troy Tulowitzki, catcher Russell Martin and starting pitchers J.A. Happ and Aaron Sanchez returning from injuries.
With second baseman Devon Travis on the 60-day disabled list rehabbing a right knee injury, the Jays need someone to fill that spot. They also need some speed on the basepaths, as Toronto is arguably the slowest team in baseball.
How slow? Gordon has as many stolen bases (32) as the entire Jays team. Per Baseball Reference, only one Blue Jay (center fielder Kevin Pillar) has more than five this year.
Therefore, the Marlins speedster would seem like the perfect piece for a late-season playoff push.
Christian Yelich and Marcell Ozuna
Gordon may not be the only Marlin headed out of town, as outfielders Christian Yelich and Marcell Ozuna are reportedly garnering some interest from the St. Louis Cardinals, per Mark Feinsand of MLB.com:
Ozuna is enjoying a breakout season in his age-26 campaign, as he started for the NL All-Star team and has 23 home runs, 70 RBI and a .317 batting average. If not for Giancarlo Stanton's 28 dingers, Ozuna would be leading the Fish in all three categories.
Therefore, trading Ozuna would seem puzzling. Wouldn't the Marlins want to build around him at this point, especially considering that he isn't eligible for free agency until 2020?
Although Yelich isn't having the same offensive season as Ozuna with eight homers, 48 RBI, .284 batting average), he's a solid center fielder who won a Gold Glove in 2014 and finished 19th in NL MVP voting last year. Plus, he's only 25 years old. Like Ozuna, it might make more sense to hold onto Yelich and keep him as part of the core.
There is an argument to trading one or both outfielders. For starters, the Marlins would get a nice prospect haul in return for Ozuna, whose stock is as high as it's ever been during his five-year career.
Furthermore, the Marlins might look at their situation, most notably a 4.63 team ERA this year (22nd out of 30 MLB teams) and trade Ozuna and/or Yelich for some pitching prospects.
It will be interesting to see how the trade deadline plays out in Miami.
If you're a team contending for a playoff berth, then you've probably inquired about Detroit Tigers left-handed closer Justin Wilson at some point.
At least that's how it seems per the latest Twitter talk.
Here's Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports, citing a report from Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times:
Jon Morosi of MLB Network and Fox Sports reports the Washington Nationals are looking for more bullpen help even after acquiring A's reliever Sean Doolittle:
The rich might get richer for the Houston Astros, the best team in the American League, per Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports:
The amount of smoke indicates that something is likely going to get done before the trade deadline on July 31, but at this point, nothing is imminent per Jason Beck, the Tigers' beat reporter for MLB.com:
The 29-year-old grabbed the closing gig in May and has held onto it since, saving 10 games and striking out 50 batters in 35.1 innings. For the season, Wilson has a 2.29 ERA and 0.91 WHIP.
Interestingly, Wilson has done better against right-handed batters over his career, which makes him an even greater asset as he's proved capable of getting hitters out from both sides of the plate.
This season, right-handers are hitting just a paltry .122 against him (left-handers aren't doing well either, managing a .235 average).
Wilson would be a versatile asset to any major league bullpen. Given the number of reported suitors vying for his services, the Tigers can be patient and pick the best offer. Ultimately, whoever ends up with Wilson is going to pay a good price.