10 Impact MLB Trades That No One Will See Coming
Impact Trades That No One Will See Coming
A long gap sits between the publishing of this article and the MLB non-waiver trade deadline on July 31, so there's plenty of time for some of the following ideas to not seem so insane. The 10 crazy hypothetical trades proposed in the following slides are meant to stimulate discussion, and not necessarily serve as a straight-up prediction, to rack our brains on what might possibly come out of left field this summer.
Some of these will probably be called out and discussed in some corner of the Internet, and may even pick up plenty of steam. The main criteria for this is that there are plenty of valid reasons against it, but also some intriguing reasons for it, along with a level of viability.
It's hard to tell when one team that entered the season with extremely high expectations will suddenly decide it's all for naught and deal their supposed foundational pieces. Last year, the Miami Marlins dealt Hanley Ramirez to the Los Angeles Dodgers in a trade that doesn't seem to crazy in retrospect, but to predict that heading into the 2012 season would come off rather bold. Then again, that's what happens over the course of a season — dreams are both created out of nowhere and crushed, while deadline deals formulate from both the aspirations and wreckage.
It will be intriguing to see how the 2013 MLB trade deadline unfolds along with the two-plus months of build-up. Check out my list of potential trade scenarios that range from absurd to sensible.
10) Drew Storen to the Tampa Bay Rays
Storen signed just a one-year, $2.5 million deal with the Washington Nationals this offseason and sits behind Rafael Soriano for the closer spot, so he sounds like solid trade bait. Rays closer Fernando Rodney has struggled this year, but we'll see if they bail on a player with his track record.
9) Justin Morneau to the Baltimore Orioles
It's sad to see smaller-market teams trade off their best players and descend into mediocrity, but this could totally happen with the Minnesota Twins here. Granted, a trade like this hasn't exactly been the O's MO, but Morneau would provide a major upgrade over Nolan Reimold at the DH spot at the very least.
8) Ryan Howard to the New York Yankees
It's not too hard to justify dealing the 33-year-old slugger from the Philadelphia Phillies' end, but would the Phillies get for this handsomely paid declining player? On the bright side, Yankees are wont to make deals such as this.
7) Carlos Pena to the St. Louis Cardinals
Pena has failed to top a .250 batting average since 2007 and plays for a team that will look absolutely desperate in trade negotiations, the Houston Astros. However, he could provide some additional power to the lineup while the versatile Allen Craig could move from first base.
6) David Price to the Pittsburgh Pirates
Here's another crazy one — hear me at out least. The Pirates seem particularly eager this year to prove that they're a respectable franchise that doesn't at all deserve EPL-style relegation. After a strong 25-17, if this keeps going, perhaps Pittsburgh breaks character to snag a high-profile ace at the deadline in Price.
5) Matt Garza to the Oakland A's
It seems like the Garza trade rumors are almost obligatory at this point — and why not? The Chicago Cubs are awful every year. However, the starter's 3.52 ERA in two previous seasons with the Cubs makes him marketable, and the Athletics could use a rotational boost to take the next postseason step this fall.
4) Bud Norris to the New York Yankees
As you can see, I am picking on the Astros a little bit in this slideshow; They're pretty much a minor-league team at this point, so that's not my fault. With the age on the Yankees' starting rotation and concerns with Andy Pettitte hitting the disabled list, I could see New York adding Norris.
3) Chase Utley to the Los Angeles Dodgers
The era of Dodgers ownership appears mighty eager to spend money and contend, so chasing an expensive big-name like Chase Utley makes sense to me. They're buying everyone up in here, while the Philadelphia Phillies have the look of a team losing its championship window.
2) Huston Street to the Boston Red Sox
This might be a bit of a knee-jerk reaction, but the injury to Red Sox closer Joel Hanrahan got me thinking about the San Diego Padres' closer. I could very much envision a scenario in late May where Boston's contending, San Diego isn't, and Street is dealt from coast to coast.
1) Zack Cozart to the Los Angeles Angels
You didn't actually think that intro slide photo was referring to Joey Votto, did you? The guy just signed a 12-year deal. Obviously, it was referring to the other man pictured giving him a high-five, fist-pump or whatever — Cincinnati Reds shortstop Zack Cozart. At the time of writing, current Angels shortstop Erick Aybar led the majors in errors at his position and didn't offer anything special at the plate. Cozart is struggling even more as a hitter, but this slide is assuming the young shortstop delivers on enough of the promise he's shown to create trade value for Cincy.