Potential Trade Packages and Landing Spots for MLB Star Marcus Stroman
The 28-year-old was selected to his first All-Star Game this season and has a 3.06 ERA. However, Stroman has a 6-10 record, and Toronto sits 27.5 games behind the first-place New York Yankees in the AL East.
The Blue Jays will undoubtedly be sellers this year as they continue to rebuild and retool their team around younger players like Vladimir Guerrero Jr. That makes Stroman a key target for teams looking for another starter to help carry them on a deep postseason run.
The trade market for Stroman figures to be strong. Here, we'll break down a few teams that have had reported interest in the All-Star and come up with potential packages they could offer Toronto.
Boston Red Sox
The Boston Red Sox are in the middle of the AL wild-card race, but they'll need to bolster their starting rotation to defend their World Series title.
Boston's starting rotation ranks 20th in MLB with a 4.79 ERA. Outside of David Price and Eduardo Rodriguez, inconsistency has plagued the other starters as of late. In particular, Chris Sale has been a major disappointment with a 4-9 record.
Adding Stroman would give the Red Sox one of the most formidable top-of-rotation units in the American League, but it could cost them some of their top prospects.
The Chicago Cubs were in a similar situation when they traded away four players, including talented prospect Eloy Jimenez, to acquire Jose Quintana two seasons ago. Like Stroman, Quintana was performing well on a Chicago White Sox team that was struggling to give him adequate run support.
If Boston wants to snag Stroman, a similar package would likely be on the table.
Toronto Receives: 1B/3B Triston Casas, LHP Jay Groome, player to be named later
The Atlanta Braves sit atop the NL East, but they're working on making a few adjustments ahead of the playoffs.
According to David O'Brien of The Athletic, the Braves "were among many teams" that sent scouts to watch Stroman pitch against the Tigers, "which some believe could be his last for Toronto before he's traded."
While rookie pitcher Mike Soroka has dazzled with a 10-2 record and a 2.46 ERA, the bottom of Atlanta's rotation has been struggling.
Kevin Gausman (14 GS, 3-5, 5.71 ERA) and Mike Foltynewicz (11 GS, 2-5, 6.37 ERA) have each taken huge steps back in 2019, while Julio Teheran (21 GS, 5-6, 3.61 ERA) has struggled with consistency. He has only eight quality starts in 21 outings.
The Braves would likely need to offer a veteran along with a few prospects to entice the Blue Jays to give up Stroman, but don't rule out the possibility of Atlanta and Toronto working out a deal soon.
Toronto receivers: OF Ender Inciarte, C William Contreras, RHP Ian Anderson
New York Yankees
The New York Yankees are no strangers to being aggressive buyers at the trade deadline. That's unlikely to change this year.
With a significant lead in the AL East, the Yankees are now looking at how they can make themselves the clear World Series front-runners in the American League.
New York's starting rotation has been solid this season, but Domingo German (3.38) is the only starter with an ERA below 4.00. If the Yankees acquire Stroman, his 3.06 ERA would be the lowest of any of their starting pitchers.
According to MLB Network's Jon Heyman, the Yankees are one of the favorites to land Stroman at the deadline. But considering the number of suitors in this race, the Blue Jays would likely require a huge haul to give up their star pitcher to the top team in their own division.
The Yankees may have to offer a few top prospects along with a veteran to get a deal done for Stroman.
Toronto receives: OF Estevan Florial, RHP Jonathan Loaisiga, C Austin Romine
San Diego Padres
Although the San Diego Padres are hovering around .500, they're well out of the playoff race for now.
But with young players like Fernando Tatis Jr. and Franmil Reyes impressing, the Padres may soon begin to build for the 2020 season.
In December, they were reportedly engaged in trade talks with the Blue Jays for Stroman, according to MLB.com's Jon Paul Morosi. This past week, Morosi reported the Padres were one of eight teams in attendance for Stroman's last start against Detroit.
San Diego has a lot of talented young hitters, but its starting rotation ranks 16th with a 4.50 ERA. Acquiring Stroman would make a ton of sense.
The Padres have MLB's best farm system, including MLB.com's top-rated lefty, MacKenzie Gore. They aren't likely to part with Gore, but they have plenty of other enticing young prospects to convince the Blue Jays to give up Stroman.
Toronto receive: RHP Luis Patino, LHP Ryan Weathers, 2B/SS Xavier Edwards, player to be named later
The Minnesota Twins have been perhaps the biggest surprise story in baseball this season.
Although Jose Berrios and Jake Odorizzi have ERAs of 2.96 and 3.18, respectively, the Twins are reportedly looking to add another strong arm to their pitching staff.
MLB Network's Jon Paul Morosi reported Sunday that the Twins continue to show interest in acquiring Stroman as the deadline approaches.
The Twins would likely need to give up some of the top prospects in their 10th-ranked farm system to get a deal done. While they may not be willing to part with shortstop Royce Lewis, MLB.com's seventh-ranked prospect, they have four other top-100 prospects at their disposal.
The Twins aren't the clear front-runners to land Stroman. But considering how well they're playing this season, Minnesota may make an aggressive offer to land one of the best pitchers in baseball this year.
Toronto receives: OF Alex Kirilloff, RHP Jordan Balazovic, LHP Lewis Thorpe, OF Jake Cave