The MLB trade deadline is one of the most exciting parts of the entire season. This is where the division bottom feeders send their best players to teams trying to win it all and net prospects in return. There will probably be more trades in the time between you reading this and the deadline than the rest of the year combined, and there will be plenty of big names on the move. This deadline could be especially active because of the many soon-to-be free agents on losing teams that can’t afford to pay them because of the COVID shortened 2020 season causing a huge loss in revenue. The trade deadline is on July 30th, about a week away, and it’s closing in fast. Let’s go through and predict every big name that could be moved, and where they could be headed.
Joey Gallo gets traded to the Yankees
The Yankees always seem to be buyers at the deadline, and this year will probably be no different. The Yankees have had a down year, but that won’t stop them from chasing after Gallo here. The only good batter on this team has been Aaron Judge, so adding Gallo could be crucial. He’d be under control through the end of next season, and his defense and bat at a very lefty hitter friendly stadium might be enough to make the Yankees pull the trigger here.
Kris Bryant gets traded to the Mets
The Mets have the best shot to win a surprisingly wide open NL East, but they’ll have to be aggressive at the deadline to make this team a true contender. I fully expect them to do everything they can to snag multiple key trade candidates here at the deadline, but the biggest could be Kris Bryant. He is almost a lock to be traded if the Cubs front office has any common sense, and his fit with the Mets would be perfect. This trade makes sense for both sides, and the Mets could finally lock down the hot corner position.
Trevor Story gets traded to the Reds
Is this a little too bold? Maybe. The trade deadline is all about surprises and being bold though, and the Reds could end up pulling this off. They’ve had to rely on Kyle Farmer and Eugenio Suarez for most of their inning at shortstop this season, so they atleast need to gauge the price on some of the top shortstops on the trade block. Story may end up only being a rental, as his contract ends after this season and he’s due for a lucrative deal, but the Reds could atleast use him to try and catch the Brewers in the NL Central this season. This could be one of the biggest surprises of the deadline, and when it happens, you heard it here first.
Craig Kimbrel gets traded to the Blue Jays
The advanced statistics would tell you that the Blue Jays should have one of the best records in the league, but yet they sit at right around .500 at this point in the season. The problem is their awful bullpen. They are only going to get better as their young talent flourishes, so they need to get aggressive and make moves for some key bullpen pitchers at this deadline. Kimbrel is by far the best reliever on the trade market, and he could lock down the save role for the Blue Jays for this season and beyond if the resign him. The Blue Jays will be desperate for bullpen improvement, and I expect them to get aggressive in pursuit of Kimbrel.
Max Scherzer gets traded to the Astros
This move would be reminiscent of a similar move made by the Astros at the trade deadline a few years ago when they acquired Justin Verlander. That move clearly worked out and the Astros could use another talented starting pitcher as they look to make a deep playoff run. The Nats could look to move Scherzer, and he is a good fit with the Astros if they elect to go after him.
Adam Frazier gets traded to the White Sox
The White Sox are miraculously at the top of their division while battling numerous injuries to key players, so they could be very aggressive at the deadline to replace injured starters and add talent for a playoff run. Adam Frazier has been one of the biggest surprises this season and fits the White Sox perfectly. Nick Madrigal, the White Sox starting second baseman, is out for the year. That provides Frazier with a wide open second base position to take over if he gets shipped to Chicago. The Pirates will be sellers, and their biggest prize could be Frazier. Expect a couple teams to go after him, but I think the White Sox will end up snagging the talented second baseman.
Starling Marte gets traded to the Astros
It looked as though the Marlins would try and extend Marte and start moving in the right direction after they won a playoff series in 2020, but they have been awful this season. It looks increasingly likely that they’ll move Marte at this deadline, and the Astros would be great suitors. Marte could man a wide open outfield spot left by the departure of George Springer and immediately help this already talented Astros team. I think the Astros will be very aggressive at the deadline in hopes of making a deep postseason run with their talented roster, and Marte could be a huge prize.
Kyle Gibson gets traded to the Mets
The Mets were a great pitching staff in the first half of this season, but they could use more depth and durability. They will probably call a lot of Jose Berrios, but I think they’ll have to settle with Gibson here. He could immediately slot into this rotation and provide some great innings for this ball club. The Rangers are looking to clean house and this deal makes sense for both sides.
Ian Kennedy gets traded to the Reds
The Reds have been very good this season after an embarrassing playoff performance last year, and they could definitely be big buyers at this deadline as they try and push their way into a playoff spot. The weakest part of this team is clearly the bullpen, and they could take advantage of a Rangers team having a firesale and acquire a solid arm in Kennedy. He would immediately bolster the Cincinnati bullpen as they make a run at the NL Central title.
Anthony Rizzo gets traded to the Red Sox
As the Red Sox keep winning, it becomes more and more likely that they’ll buy at the deadline. The biggest position of need has to be first base, where they are dead last in the league in bWAR at the position. A reunion with Anthony Rizzo would be a match made in heaven, a perfect fit for both Rizzo and the Sox. The Cubs could definitely be open to moving him, and Boston shouldn’t hesitate to snag him. He would be a huge upgrade to the position and provide the Red Sox with another key bat for the final few months of the regular season and potentially the postseason as well.
Richard Rodriguez gets traded to the Phillies
The Phillies somehow find themselves in second place in the NL East, and they’ve played some good baseball recently. This could make them buyers at the deadline as they chase only the Mets in their division. The bullpen needs some work, and they’d be happy to get Rodriguez from the Pirates. He could immediately be an upgrade to a closer role that’s been bouncing around the weak Phillies bullpen.
Nelson Cruz gets traded to the Athletics
The Twins are a train wreck and they will undoubtedly be sellers at the deadline, and Cruz could be the biggest to go. It makes sense for the Athletics to target the ageless wonder that is Nelson Cruz, they have gotten virtually no production out of their DH spot. Adding Cruz to this lineup makes them a dangerous team as they already trail only the Astros in the AL West. They may be a small market, but don’t be surprised if the A’s get aggressive at the deadline and get a guy like Nelson Cruz.
Jon Gray gets traded to the Red Sox
The Red Sox are somehow at the top of the best division in baseball, and they are doing it with a couple holes in their starting rotation. Jon Gray has put up solid numbers while pitching half of his games at the home run paradise that is Coors Field, so he’s bound to only get better if he moves to Fenway Park. The Red Sox could be buyers, and adding Gray to this team would be a sneaky good acquisition.
Eduardo Escobar gets traded to the Brewers
The Brewers are at the top of the NL Central but have relied way too heavily on their pitching. They’ll need to add a key hitter or two at this deadline to stave off the teams chasing them. Escobar is a perfect fit and would probably see most of his time at third base in Milwaukee. One of the lone bright spots on a putrid Diamondbacks team, Escobar is likely going to be moved at this deadline. The Brewers would be wise to jump all over the opportunity to add a guy like Escobar to their mediocre offense.
Jonathan Schoop gets traded to the Rays
The Rays are always looking to add multi-positional players, and they have some weak spots on the right side of the infield. Schoop would probably see a lot of time at first base if the Rays made a move for him, and it makes a lot of sense overall. The Rays aren’t usually huge movers at the deadline, but a small move like this could end up benefiting them tremendously in the later parts of this season.
Key Players Not Traded At The Deadline: