The MLB trade deadline is just a week away as it will commence at 6 p.m. (ET) on August 2. While there have been a few minor moves, several rumors are swirling, with names like Shohei Ohtani and Juan Soto being tossed around. Ohtani and Soto are under team contract until 2024.
It is unlikely that either Ohtani or Soto will be dealt prior to the deadline, although both could be moved in the offseason. However, the New York Mets did acquire catcher Michael Perez and 1B Daniel Vogelbach in separate deals from Pittsburgh over the weekend.
With plenty of buyers and several teams looking to replenish their farm systems, there figure to be many moves before the MLB deadline. The Astros, Blue Jays, Braves, Brewers, Cardinals, Dodgers, Mariners, Mets, Yankees, Padres, Phillies, Rays, and Twins are among the teams in the buyers’ market. The following are the 10 players most likely to move before the end of next Tuesday.
Luis Castillo, Reds
Starting pitching is always at a premium, particularly at the trade deadline, and Castillo is the best available at this time. The 29-year-old right-hander is arguably having his best season despite owning a 3-4 record, as he is producing a career-highs in ERA (2.99), WHIP (1.077), and BAA (.199) while also limiting the long-ball and posting a 3.04 K/BB ratio. Castillo is arbitration-eligible for the third time in 2023 and will be unrestricted in 2024.
Cincinnati is sitting at the bottom of the MLB NL Central standings and is reportedly looking to get young prospects in return for Castillo. Houston, Los Angeles Dodgers, Toronto, New York Mets, New York Yankees, St. Louis, Seattle, and Minnesota are reportedly among the teams interested in the two-time all-star.
Houston has one of the best MLB rotations in the majors and will be getting Lance McCullens back sometime soon as he is currently on a rehab assignment, The Yankees’ rotation could add depth, particularly with Luis Severino’s injury, while the Mets will be getting Tyler Megill and Jacob deGrom back shortly and they really need bullpen and help at the plate. The Blue Jays, Cardinals, Mariners, and Twins could really use to upgrade their starting pitching.
Andrew Benintendi, Royals
There are a lot of teams that could add talent, like Andrew Benintendi, in the outfield. The 28-year-old, who is going to be a MLB free agent in the offseason, is hitting a career-best .317 (through July 24), and he is on pace to register a career-high in hits and post his best OPS+ despite not hitting for a lot of power. Despite not being vaccinated, the Yankees, along with the Red Sox, Phillies, Marlins, Brewers, and Marlins, are said to be interested.
Wilson Contreras, Cubs
Chicago traded off most of its talent at last year’s MLB trade deadline. With the Cubs once again not in contention for a playoff spot and the 30-year-old catcher slated to be a free agent, Chicago could get a pretty big haul in return.
The 2022 MLB all-star is having one of the best seasons of his career offensively, recording an offensive WAR of 3.0 while producing a slash line of .258/.372/.471 (through July 24) with 14 home runs and 37 RBI. Conteras is also hitting a career-best .383 with runners on base. The Cardinals, Mets, Padres, Giants, and Yankees could all use an upgrade at catcher.
Josh Bell, Nationals
The switch-hitting big first baseman is one of the likeliest players to be traded as well as one of the most intriguing. Bell has been raking it for Washington since coming over from Pittsburgh, While the 6-foot-4, 255-pounder got off to a slow start as a member of the Nationals, he has compiled a slash line of .279/.364/.484 (through July 24) with 40 dingers and 139 RBI in 239 games.. The 2023 free agent is reportedly drawing interest from the Astros, Mets, Brewers, and Red Sox.
Frankie Montas, Athletics
The 29-year-old has been a solid starter over the last five years, finishing sixth in MLB CY Young voting last season. He is considered the second most likely starter to change teams despite being under team control until 2024, as the frugal A’s aren’t expected to resign him to give him an extension. Montas is 3-9 with a 3.16 ERA and a 1.08 WHIP while producing a 4.2 K/BB ratio this season.
Tommy Pham, Nationals
Pham has been a major disappointment for the Reds, hitting just .236 though he does have 11 homers, 37 RBI, and drawn 40 walks (through July 24). He is making $7.5 million in 2022 and has a mutual option for 2023. However, some contending teams need outfield help, and the veteran has some power and decent discipline at the plate.
David Roberson, Cubs
Roberson has been excellent this year, and teams always need relievers. The 37-year-old, a MLB free agent following the season, has been nearly unhittable and is recording 11.5 strikeouts per 9 innings. He is 3-0 with 13 saves, 1.88 ERA, and 0.965 WHIP in 30 appearances on the season.
Michael Fulmer, Tigers
The Tigers are in the midst of a rebuild, and they are expected to get a lot of calls about their bullpen. Fulmer, who can start or come in relief, has increased his strikeout rate since moving to the bullpen last year while holding opponents to a batting .194 average this year. He is in the final year of his contract.
Jose Quintana, Pirates
Quintana has been drawing a lot of attention since the beginning of the month as he is enjoying his best season in years and is on an expiring $2 million contract. The 29-year-old lefthander is 3-5 in 19 starts with a 3.70 ERA with a 1.28 WHIP.