Orioles shortstop Manny Machado seems like a good bet to end up on the move this year, though it’s not “anywhere close” to happening, Roch Kubatko of MASNsports.com reports. The Orioles aren’t “actively shopping” Machado right now, and they’re content to keep the soon-to-be free agent until closer to the July 31 non-waiver deadline, Kubatko writes. Kubatko goes on to list some potential Machado suitors, including the Phillies, who “left open the possibility of engaging in talks” with the Orioles when they were in Baltimore a couple weeks ago. Meanwhile, according to Kubatko, the Cubs reached out to Orioles general manager Dan Duquette to express interest in Machado, but Chicago – like Baltimore – isn’t prepared to make a major deal yet. Of course, Cubs president Theo Epstein addressed the Machado-Chicago speculation earlier this week, saying it’s “in fantasy land at this point.”
Here are more trade-related items:
- The Yankees, owners of arguably the majors’ premier offense and its second-best record (32-16), “need pitching more than anything else,” general manager Brian Cashman said Saturday (via Bryan Hoch of MLB.com). Cashman made that observation before right-hander Sonny Gray’s latest subpar start – a 3 2/3-frame, five-run performance in a loss to the Angels. Gray has now posted a 5.98 ERA/4.78 FIP with 7.97 K/9 and 5.07 BB/9 in 49 2/3 innings this year, which wasn’t the type of production the Yankees had in mind then they acquired him from the Athletics last July. His 2018 woes – not to mention a general lack of front-end starters behind ace Luis Severino – could force the World Series hopefuls to revisit the trade market for rotation help in the next couple months.
- Tampa Bay pulled off a surprise trade Friday when it sent reliever Alex Colome and outfielder Denard Span to Seattle, and that won’t be be the end of the Rays’ moves, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times suggests. With Colome and Span gone, Topkin names Chris Archer, Wilson Ramos, C.J. Cron, Carlos Gomez, Adeiny Hechavarria, Brad Miller, Sergio Romo, Matt Duffy, Chaz Roe, Nathan Eovaldi and Jonny Venters as candidates to wind up in other uniforms.
- Padres outfielder Travis Jankowski has drawn trade interest, Ryan Divish of the Seattle Times reported before the Mariners-Rays swap. It seems the Mariners tried for Jankowski prior to landing Span, but according to Divish, the Padres didn’t show much interest in the M’s low-ranked farm system. Known mostly for his speed and defense, the 26-year-old Jankowski has gotten off to a .313/.382/.400 start at the plate in 89 attempts this season. He’s controllable through the 2021 season.
- Thanks to their bullpen’s dreadful start to the season, the Indians have been inquiring about outside help, Paul Hoynes of cleveland.com relays. It doesn’t seem as if any trades are close to happening, however, as Hoynes points out that the deadline’s still more than two months away. Cleveland’s bullpen entered Saturday last in the majors in both ERA (6.23) and fWAR (minus-0.8), and it then lost integral lefty Andrew Miller to the disabled list for the second time this season.