The deadline for trading is less than 100 hours away, which means four days of constant grumbling, gossip and – hopefully – deals.
Here’s a look at the 12 players who have a solid chance of trading by Tuesday 6PM ET, starting with the most likely candidates.
1) Wilson Contreras, Cubs C
Introducing a new catcher can be challenging for a competitor, as it may take some time to learn a new show team. But Contreras is arguably the best racket available on the market, so teams may be looking to get him as a designated hitter and part-time supporter. Either way, the impending free agent looks like a lock being moved.
Possible landing areas: Astros, Mets, Rise
2) Luis Castillo, Reds RHB (junior)
Cincinnati has danced the Castillo trade dance for the past year or two, but most believe the Reds will finally make a move before the trade deadline. Castillo is going through an All-Star season, is under club control until 2023 and can affect two races and two seasons. He is the best starting player available and he should bring a great team back to the Reds.
Possible landing areas: Dodgers, Blue Jays, Yankees
3) David Robertson, Cubs RHP (The Redeemer)
Leverage reducers are always popular trading targets at this time of year, but when they are in relatively affordable trades, they become even more desirable. Robertson owes just over $1.15 million this season (plus a significant bonus of $100,000 and another $525,000 in potential performance bonuses, of which the acquiring club will be in trouble for part), but given his renaissance this season – he has 1.83 ERA in 35 games – and his vast post-season experience, the 37-year-old will be a huge addition to his rival.
Possible landing areas: Mets, Rice, Yankees
4) Josh Bell Nationals 1B
Juan Soto isn’t the only Nationals player who has grabbed attention in the commercial market this summer. Available power bats are relatively rare this month, but Bell — the impending free agent with 13 homers and 0.877 OPS — should help add some pop to the contender at first base or DH. He owed about $3.3 million through the end of the season.
Possible landing areas: Astros, Brewers, Mets
5) Frankie Montas, RHP Athletics (Junior)
A shoulder problem caused Montas earlier this month to miss a pair of starts, but he came back after the All-Star break and went down twice, allowing three runs over eight runs. Montas sat in the 95-96 mph range in the early runs from his last start, and while his pace dropped in the fourth and fifth, he looked like him throughout the ride. Any concern about his arm could cut back on the comeback, but with another year of club control, Oakland will likely wait to move it up in the off-season if performances are lighter than expected. However, in this thin market, Montas is a near lock-in to be traded.
Possible landing areas: Cardinals, White Sox, Yankees
6) Brandon Drury, Reds info
The 29-year-old impending free agent is having a career year and has already put his best foot forward with 19 races on home soil. Drury’s ability to play multiple positions makes him an attractive addition for contenders, as does his bargain price tag (and he owes about $300,000 for the remainder of the season).
Possible landing areas: The Braves, the Dodgers, the White Sox
7) Noah Sendergaard, Angels RHP (writer)
Syndergaard’s drop in speed this season – his average ball speed is 94mph, a stark difference from his 98mph heater before Tommy John’s surgery – has caused concern from other clubs, but the 29-year-old has He reached a 3.83 ERA in 80 innings in 2022. Syndergaard is unlikely to be acquired as a spin top arm, but teams looking for depth of spin may be willing to take the opportunity on the right, who will be a free agent this winter. The Angels would probably get a better chance if they were willing to pay the $7 million he owes him for the rest of the season.
Possible landing areas: Blue Jays, Phyllis, Twins
8) Jose Quintana, Pirates LHP (starter)
Five years ago, Quintana was one of the most prominent names in the commercial market, eventually moving from White Sox to Cubs in a deal that landed Dylan Cease and Eloy Jiménez on the south side. It’s been a rough ride for Quintana ever since, but the left-winger is enjoying a bounce season with the Pirates, giving Pittsburgh a strong trading chip headed to the deadline. With only about $650,000 left on his contract, Quintana will be a much-needed rental arm.
Possible landing areas: Brewers, guardians, sailors
9) David Peralta, D-Back LF
Peralta’s value is simple: he hits hard on the right throw. The 0.830 OPS against the right this season makes it a legitimate left fielder/DH platoon candidate, and some of the league’s contenders have struggled against right-handers this season. The 34-year-old is in the final year of his three-year extension, $22 million, so he owes less than $3 million for the remainder of the season.
Possible landing areas: Padres, Rice, White Sox
10) Daniel Bard, Rockies RHP (The Redeemer)
Like Robertson, Bard is 37 years old and enjoying a big year at a losing team with a relatively reasonable salary ($4.4 million). Unlike Robertson, who is in his freshman year with the Cubs, he’s been cold with the Rockies since returning to the Majors in 2020, so it’s possible the two will try to continue their relationship with a new extension. If no deal is reached, Bard numbers will be a common business target, with several teams already expressing interest in the right wing.
Possible landing areas: Cardinals, Dodgers, Yankees
11) Ian Hub, CAPS LF
Unlike Contreras and Robertson, Happ is the only Cubs commercial candidate signed after 2022, so Chicago can wait to shop for him again in the off-season. But Hap – who has played all three outside positions during his career and can also play three positions on the field – is coming off his first All-Star debut, so the Cubs can try to capitalize on his strong season and move up the hitter’s key by Tuesday.
Possible landing areas: Dodgers, Padres, Phyllis
12) Juan Soto, Nationals RF
You don’t think we’ll have this list and it doesn’t include Soto, do you? The feeling around the industry is that the closer you get to the deadline, the less likely Soto will move on by Tuesday. The Citizens are rightly asking for the biggest bundle of young talent the game has ever seen, and while waiting for the season to finish will put a slight impact on Soto’s value – it could affect three races and a science season if tackled this week, but only two if it goes this winter – Soto’s return in the off-season will remain fictional.
Possible landing areas: Cardinals, Dodgers, Padres