Sonny Gray’s two most recent starts for the Athletics have altered his stock in a hurry, writes ESPN’s Buster Olney. Gray’s struggles over the past 13 to 14 months have been tied not only to injury but to a (quite possibly related) drop in his swinging-strike rate, but he’s racked up swings-and-misses in his each of his past two outings thanks to a revitalized breaking pitch. Gray’s velocity spiked in his most recent start, as well — an outing in which he completed seven one-run innings and whiffed 11 Marlins hitters on just 88 pitches. Olney suggests that Gray could emerge as the top trade target on the market if this trend continues much longer, as the A’s are typically willing to deal earlier than most clubs, there are motivated buyers already (e.g. Cubs, Yankees, Astros) and Oakland may wish to cash in while Gray is looking impressive.
More from the game’s Western divisions…
- Injured Angels relievers Huston Street, Mike Morin and Cam Bedrosian are all making good progress in their recoveries, writes Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register. And while Morin has minor league options remaining and isn’t a lock to return to the big league club right away, the returns of Street and Bedrosian will give manager Mike Scioscia some interesting decisions when it comes to late-inning bullpen usage. Bud Norris has been outstanding in a ninth-inning role, but Bedrosian has been the team’s best reliever for a year, and Street is has the track record and salary of a veteran closer. Fletcher notes that the Angels only have two relievers with minor league options at present, one being left-hander Jose Alvarez, who won’t be going anywhere. As such, it seems that another 40-man move could be necessary. Bedrosian is set to start a rehab assignment within the next week or so.
- Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union Tribune takes a look at right-hander Dinelson Lamet’s unlikely path to the Major Leagues in advance of the 24-year-old’s MLB debut. Lamet, who will start for the Padres tonight, is the rare Dominican-born prospect that did not sign until after his 20th birthday, Lin notes. Most Dominican ballplayers that show big league potential are snatched up beginning at age 16 and possibly a year or two later, but Lamet signed less than two months before turning 22 and is now set to debut less than three years later. As Lin writes, Lamet was poised to sign with the Phillies, but a documentation issue torpedoed that deal. Lin chats with former Padres exec Randy Smith about what the team saw in Lamet as an amateur and how they went about closing the deal.
- Padres manager Andy Green won’t name Brad Hand his new closer despite the lefty’s save in last night’s win over the Mets, but he did tell reporters that Hand and former closer Brandon Maurer will both be in the mix for saves (link via MLB.com’s AJ Cassavell). “It’s going to be looking at the game and seeing what’s best for the group of guys we have at that point in time,” says Green. “I think we’ll just bounce guys around and utilize them in the best way possible going forward right now. Wouldn’t be shocked at all to see Brandon Maurer in that situation in the ninth. Wouldn’t be shocked to see Brad Hand back in that situation.” Hand, of course, saw his name pop up as a trade target in a couple of reports last night and figures to be an oft-rumored trade candidate in the months leading up to the non-waiver deadline. For that matter, though, Maurer could also generate interest, though he’d first need to distance himself from a rough stretch of games through which he struggled in mid-May.
- Jack Magruder of FanRag Sports adds some context to Shelby Miller’s recent Tommy John surgery, tweeting that Miller was diagnosed with a 50 percent tear of the ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow. The extent of the tear doesn’t necessarily change Miller’s timeline for recovery, of course. He’ll still miss the remainder of the 2017 season and hope to return to the D-backs’ rotation at some point in the first half of the 2017 campaign.
Cue the edit police.
Seven one run innings from Gray? Hows that a good start?
7 innings allowing just 1 run. Not 7 innings that all consisted of 1 run per inning
“He’ll still miss the remainder of the 2017 season and hope to return to the D-backs‘ rotation at some point in the first half of the 2017 campaign.”
Does Shelby Miller have a time machine?
The same one Arizona Sports thinks that AJ Pollock has…
“Pollock, who has been sidelined since May 15, isn’t expected to join the team on the current road trip which ends May 4 in Miami…”
I don’t think that any other team’s pitching staff has been as devastated by injuries as the Angels. 5 starters, their closer and 2 top relievers all have hit the DL this season. Scioscia is pulling rabbits out of his hat to have that team have a winning record right now.
Don’t forget 3rd baseman, Escobar
I really think 2018 might be the angels year to actually make a run and spend money.
Back to the Future Miller. Hum what an interesting 2017 season he is having
Just Another Fan
Could the A’s get Carson Kelly from STL without giving up Gray, Barreto or Puk?
in a grey deal yes otherwise no
No. Kelly is untouchable for them. He is the heir to Yadi’s throne. The only reason he isn’t on the big league club is because they want him playing everyday and not on the bench.
Even though bullpen arms are finicky and the Angels have horrible luck with injuries, it may prove beneficial to them that they can trade some of the relievers around the deadline (whether or not they are in a contending position). They could sell high on some of them.
RyÅn W Krol
Sell to buy. Like the Trumbo trade.
RyAn to get Trumbo, and we all know I want Trumbo. The Angels would either have to trade something they don’t have, young healthy controllable pitching. Or trade Calhoun and take on Jiminez and that horrible contract. I think they would be better off offering Cron and Perez to the Rockies for Chatwood. Or to the Royals for Moustakas.
Wow there’s STILL people wanting Trumbo back?????
Shakes …… My ……. Head…….. I’m thankful you people are not in the FO
Hand had another save tonight, though it wasn’t a clean inning. He’ll probably be getting the majority of the closing opportunities if they want to build up his trade value even more.
He’s been really shaky in both those save opportunities. I don’t believe there’s some magic that allows some relievers to be closers and some not to, but I think some teams believe it.
GM’s are REALLY dumb if they’re going to pay a premium for Gray based on a whopping 2 starts. Maybe it’d be justifiable to say “he’s back” if he continues this up to the deadline, but anything short of that I’d be looking elsewhere.
Just Another Fan
Are you seriously going to ignore Gray’s entire body of work, including outstanding postseason results and a top 3 finish in the Cy, and call GM’s dumb for wanting a guy who is showing he’s over his injuries now? That’s not dumb at all, Gray is one of the most valuable SP on the trade market due to not being a FA until 2020. Cubs should bite for sure, Braves also a nice fit – Sonny would absolutely dominate the NL.
His stuggles would make it easier to acquire him
1) No, I’m not ignoring his body of work at all.
2) I never once called GM’s dumb for wanting him. I said they’d be dumb to “pay a premium for him” based on 2 starts.
3) If you made it through the entire comment, which I’m sure you didn’t, you’d realize that I said it may be justifiable to pay that premium if he continues this “progress” up to the deadline. 2 starts doesn’t “show” he’s over his injuries; it’s just 2 starts. I’m going to need more than that before I pay a hefty price on someone that was recently injured and then awful.
I’m no expert but, to me, it looks like the Padres minor league affiliates are strong with RP and OF and very weak at SP, 2B and 3B.
If I had to guess, its between the Rangers, Dodgers and Diamondbacks where Brad Hand will go mid-season.
The Diamondbacks need a CL and the Rangers and Dodgers need a LH-RP.
The Red Sox likely won’t make a play. Dave Dombrowski doesn’t have a reputation for acquiring relief pitchers, (with the exception of Tyler Thornburg).
The Astros and the Cubs are too smart to give up what the Fryers will ask while the Mets aren’t smart enough.
The Cardinals already have LH-RPs Kevin Siegrist and Brett Cecil.
I assume that the Nats, the Tigers, the Angels and the O’s don’t have what the Padres want.
The Twins, the Indians, the Yankees, the Rays, the Rockies and the Brewers are probably not buyers.
The ideal place for Brad Hand to land would be the Giants but, they’re 11 games out already.
Yankees aren’t buyers? I really hope you’re just biased
Has anybody kept track? Is Shelby Miller the most mentioned name on this site for the last few years?