By Brad Berreman @bradberreman24 on July 21, 2014
Despite an 18-24 record since the start of June and injuries to key players, the Toronto Blue Jays remain in the thick of the American League playoff race with a 51-48 record entering Monday's action.
The Blue Jays should be buyers as the trade deadline gets closer, particularly as they look to add some spark to their offense. That said, here are five players general manager Alex Anthopoulus should look to deal before the end of the month.
Kratz has just 10 at-bats since being recalled from Triple-A on July 9, and in the grand scheme of things the Blue Jays don't need a third catcher as long as Dioner Navarro and Josh Thole are healthy.
Happ started the season in the bullpen, then struggled as a starter (4.75 ERA over 13 starts) before recently being moved back into a relief role. Happ has not pitched since July 12, despite no known injury concerns, and with Toronto claiming Brad Mills off waivers last week he looks like an odd-man out right now.
After hitting 10 home runs over his first 123 at-bats with the Blue Jays this year, Francisco has struggled more recently (.183, four home runs and eight RBI since June 6; 82 at-bats). All things considered, Francisco may be one of Toronto's top trade assets if another team wants to buy into his power potential.
Delabar was sent down to the minors in mid-June after posting a 4.91 ERA over 30 appearances for the Blue Jays this year, and he hasn't been any better at Triple-A with 5.40 ERA (eight appearances). Delabar was a 2013 All-Star (3.22 ERA and a 12.6 K/9 rate over 55 appearances), so another team may think it can help him recapture that form.
Struggled had an ERA over 5.00 over eight starts to start the season, but he has pitched better since being moved to the bullpen in May (2.66 ERA over 24 appearances). The Blue Jays have solid bullpen depth and McGowan is healthy after battling shoulder issues in recent years, so now may be the time to trade him.
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