Jayson Stark has an assessment of the trade market over at ESPN.com.
- Aside from the usual Mark Teixeira/Eric Gagne mentions, Stark believes many Rangers may be headed out at the trading deadline. Specifically, he names Brad Wilkerson, Kenny Lofton, and Sammy Sosa. Lofton is always a good midseason mercenary. He’s like a Mike Stanton in that way.
- Ken Griffey Jr. would approve a trade to Atlanta and might consider certain other teams. Junior is making $12.5MM this year and next, plus a $4MM buyout for ’09. Quite a bit of the contract is deferred, also. $29MM over 2007-08 is still pretty steep, but now would be the right time to trade Griffey.
- Nationals – still asking too much for Chad Cordero. Bowden’s got time to wait around for the right deal, I suppose.
- Best option for Todd Helton still appears to be the Angels, in Stark’s mind. That does not seem workable to me, because Casey Kotchman has broken out and Vlad needs access to the DH spot.
- Speaking of DHs, this might finally be the year Mike Sweeney gets traded and gets to play for a contender. If he heats up, maybe the Twins could snag him.
- Michael Bourn could be a trade candidate, if the Phillies decide he’s only a future fourth outfielder. Probably makes sense to keep him around if Aaron Rowand is going to walk after this season.
- The Astros are buyers, and they have all sorts of needs. A young catcher would be nice, but those are always in short supply.
- Speaking of young catchers, Jarrod Saltalamacchia has received interest but the Braves are not biting. A lot hinges on Scott Thorman’s performance and, of course, which young player the Braves are offered for Salty. Most teams would love to have him.