10 Best Pitchers Available at 2013 MLB Trade Deadline

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10 Best Available Pitchers

Charles LeClaire - USA Today Sports

With the trade deadline less than 25 days away, teams are starting to put themselves in the category of “buyers” or “sellers.” The buyers are in the market for that one guy that’s going to put them over the top. They are having a great season, but they need one more piece to truly be considered contenders for the postseason. The sellers are in the class that is looking to retool their farm system and have an eye towards the future. They take advantage of strong play from a veteran or a free agent to be and ship them out of town before you can even blink.

One thing every club is always looking for is pitching. You can never have enough pitching and that’s why at the trade deadline, you will see many of the potential contenders making moves for pitchers. Whether it be to bolster their bullpen, provide depth in the starting rotation or add a top of the line ace, the market is there for pitchers come July 31.

The first moves have been made with Scott Feldman getting dealt from the Chicago Cubs to the Baltimore Orioles and Ricky Nolasco heading to the Los Angeles Dodgers from the Miami Marlins. With that being said, there are still plenty of big names available and the buyers (Pittsburgh Pirates, Texas Rangers, Boston Red Sox, etc.) will be looking to turn themselves from potential playoff berth to legitimate World Series contention.

Follow the slides for the 10 best pitchers who potentially could be available at the trade deadline.

Zach Slotter is a writer for Rant Sports. Follow him on Twitter @zslot6, Like his Facebook page or add him on Google.

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10. Shaun Marcum

Mike DiNovo - USA Today Sports

Shaun Marcum has struggled this year with a 1-10 record and a 5.29 ERA for the New York Mets. But he has a career 3.88 ERA and is a free agent at season’s end. The Mets won’t get much for him but if they can get anything they should take it.

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9. Oliver Perez

Steven Bisig - USA Today Sports

After being a complete bust with the Mets, Oliver Perez has resurrected his career as a situational lefty with the Seattle Mariners. He has a 1.39 ERA and 46 strikeouts in 32.1 innings. Reliable lefties are nearly impossible to come by so Perez will be a hot trade deadline topic.

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8. Steve Cishek

Dale Zanine - USA Today Sports

Steve Cishek started off the year miserably but has bounced back nicely just in time for the Marlins to send him out of town. His 2.97 ERA and 17 saves would help any team looking to bolster their middle inning relief core.

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7. Bud Norris

Gary A. Vasquez - USA Today Sports

Bud Norris is only 28 years old and he has some good stuff. He has a 6-7 record with a 3.22 ERA. Instead of being the ace on a rebuilding Houston Astros squad, he would be better suited starting Game 3 or 4 of a divisional playoff series.

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6. Jake Peavy

David Banks - USA Today Sports

Jake Peavy has always been the subject of trade rumors and with the Chicago White Sox out of contention, this year will be no different. Peavy is currently on the DL but was 6-2 with a 2.97 ERA at one point this year before the injury bug bit him again. If he can get healthy enough to make a start or two before the deadline, teams like the Rangers or Red Sox would certainly inquire about his availability.

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5. Kevin Gregg

Steven Bisig - USA Today Sports

The Cubs always seem to be sellers at this time of the year and they have another marketable piece in Kevin Gregg. He is 15 for 17 in save opportunities and has a 1.78 ERA. He would be another fine choice for a setup man for a postseason team.

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4. Kyle Lohse

Charles LeClaire - USA Today Sports

Despite going 16-3 with a 2.86 ERA last year, it took Kyle Lohse a long time to find a job for 2013. He joined the Milwaukee Brewers and has gone 4-6 but with a respectable 3.43 ERA. His three-year/$33 million contract might be tough to move, but his postseason experience might be enough for teams to take a chance.

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3. Matt Garza

Anthony Gruppuso - USA Today Sports

The Cubs are on this list again looking to move any valuable pieces they might have. Matt Garza is a free agent at the end of the year and has nasty stuff if he can ever stay healthy. He currently is 4-1 with a 3.45 ERA with 52 strikeouts in 57.1 innings. Since he will just be a half year rental player, I could see a handful of teams going after him to try and make a run at the 2013 World Series.

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2. Jonathan Papelbon

Charles LeClaire - USA Today Sports

This all depends on if the Philadelphia Phillies decide to be buyers or sellers. If they choose the latter, they might have the two best arms on the move. The first is closer Jonathan Papelbon who has 18 saves, a 1.82 ERA and a 0.87 WHIP. The Red Sox have closer issues so maybe a return to Boston is in order.

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1. Cliff Lee

Howard Smith - USA Today Sports

The second of the top names from Philly is number one on our list and that is Cliff Lee. Lee is 10-2 with a 2.73 ERA and 119 strikeouts this year. He’s an All-Star, former Cy Young winner and is 7-3 with a 2.52 ERA in the postseason. Anyone would take an ace at the trade deadline and the Phillies could get at least three strong prospects in return for Lee.

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