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MLB’s Top 40 Business Candidates

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MLB’s Top 40 Business Candidates

Memorial Day is long gone, which is typically the time of year when teams at least begin to shift their focus to the summer commercial market. With this year’s draft pushed back to July, some clubs may appear to be active a little earlier than usual. Even if things don’t really pick up until next month, as is often the case, we at least have an idea of ​​how things will play out.

As in previous years, this list aims to rank players on a combination of probability of being moved and overall value as a trade token. It’s all subjective, of course, but “value” in this case is a reference to field production, salary, remaining control of the club, and so on. of a player.

Club control and salary dovetail nicely with the probability of a player being moved. Obviously rebuilding clubs and transparent sellers are more likely to move impending free agents, particularly those who are not eligible for a qualifying offer. Players with an extra year of control also frequently move into the deadline, but once you start to get into players with two, three, and four years of affordable control remaining, the probability decreases. The composition of a club’s agricultural system also comes into play. Does a veteran with a year and a half left of club control have a top prospect breathing down his neck? Is the team’s farm so bleak that you should consider moving players with several years of control left? There are many factors to consider.

As the deadline approaches, the names on the list will change. Teams will come out of contention, and some looking away from the top of their division will rise. Injuries or poor performance will undermine the value of some players, while a return to health or a change of course on the field could improve the performance of others. Again, it’s subjective and highly debatable, which is part of what makes the whole exercise fun.

To the list!

1. Jon gray, RHP, Rockies: The Rockies surrendered their front office earlier this year after another lackluster start, and Gray stands out as the most likely trade candidate on the list. Former No. The No. 3 overall pick and top prospect is in the midst of a solid rebounding campaign, but will be a free agent at the end of the season. The Rockies probably wouldn’t issue a qualifying offer without a great end of the year, and starting pitching is always in demand at the deadline.

two. Trevor’s story, SS, Rockies: While Gray may be something of a borderline QO candidate, Story seems like a lock on getting a qualifying offer if they don’t trade him. That is the key difference between him and Gray in terms of trade probability; The Roxes need to feel like whatever they get in return is more valuable than that 2022 draft pick. It should be noted that, outside of a brief hot streak from mid-April to early May, Story hasn’t really had much success in 2021. He’s also in the IL with what the team has called mild elbow swelling, and hope is his period. it will only last 10 days. Story is also hitting a career low of 22.4 percent without sacrificing anything in the walking department, and his track record is so strong that if he shows his health in the weeks ahead, interest should be solid.

Third Mitch Haniger, OF, Mariners: It was great to see Haniger take the field after his 2019-20 seasons were derailed by a strange series of escalating injuries, but the fact that he has come back as one of the most productive hitters in the American League. it just makes your story better. They’re enjoying a comeback in Seattle for now, but Haniger has only one year of control left beyond the 2021 season. With plenty of young outfielders to rely on: 2020 Rookie of the Year Kyle lewis, in addition to the best prospects Jarred kelenic, Julio Rodriguez other Taylor trammell – It seems likely that the Mariners will explore the Haniger market this summer. He is making $ 3.01 million in 2021.

Bedroom Matthew boyd, LHP, Tigers: The Tigers held on to Boyd when he was one of the most mentioned business candidates in the game in 2019, but their club’s grip on him is starting to wane. Boyd is eligible for free agency after the 2022 season, and he’s enjoying a good year thanks in large part to a makeover that has helped him neutralize right-handed rivals. As long as Boyd remains healthy and reasonably efficient, this summer will be the peak of his business value. It’s hard to see him stay in August.

5. Tyler anderson, LZ, Pirates: Anderson’s signing couldn’t have worked much better for the Bucs so far. He’s pitching his best baseball since his rookie year in 2016 and has career-high marks in his swing rate and opponent chase rate. Durability is a big question mark for Anderson, who has only started 25 games twice in a season. But he’s been healthy since Opening Day 2020, and his $ 2.5 million base salary is a steal for clubs that need some reinforcements at the back of the rotation.

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