With Brad Brach now on his way to Atlanta and Adam Jones seemingly unwilling to waive his 10-and-5 rights at present, the Orioles may turn to weighing offers on more controllable pieces, tweets Rob Biertempfel of The Athletic. Biertempfel suggests that the Pirates have been “chasing” right-hander Kevin Gausman and wonders if the club would try to expand talks to get the Orioles to somehow part with both Gausman and setup man Mychal Givens in what would then be a fairly substantial trade. There’s been no indication that the O’s are strongly considering moving either Gausman (controlled through 2020) or Dylan Bundy (2021) anyhow, and they’re reportedly loath to consider trades involving the controllable Givens, either. It’s not surprising to see the Bucs tied to affordable long-term pieces, though prying even one of those pieces, let alone two, would likely require a fairly substantial haul in return from Pittsburgh (or any other interested team).
More trade rumblings on the pitching market…
- The Mets feel that Zack Wheeler has “turned a corner” and would like a return in a trade which they feel is reflective of that improvement, tweets Fancred’s Jon Heyman. To this point, however, “no one has come even close” to meeting the team’s asking price, Heyman adds, making it seem likelier that Wheeler stays with the team through the deadline (and, quite likely then, into the offseason). With six shutout innings today, Wheeler now has a 3.20 ERA and a 63-to-23 K/BB ratio across his past 70 1/3 innings (11 starts) dating back to June 1. The 28-year-old is earning $1.9MM in 2018 and is controlled through the 2019 season.
- Keone Kela continues to draw trade interest, writes MLB.com’s T.R. Sullivan, with the Dodgers and the Braves being the two most aggressive clubs on the Rangers’ closer as of Sunday afternoon. Notably, Sullivan’s column was published prior to Atlanta’s acquisition of Brad Brach, and while that pickup certainly doesn’t mean the Braves will drop out of the Kela market, it may lessen their urgency when it comes to adding further relief arms. The Dodger are expected to be “very active” in their pursuit of bullpen help in the next couple of days, Sullivan adds, while Atlanta has been keeping a close eye on the Rangers. The Braves are also said to have some level of interest in Adrian Beltre, though Beltre has full no-trade protection and there’s nothing to suggest just yet that he’ll be waiving those rights (nor that the Rangers are really shopping him).
- Marlins setup man Brad Ziegler is “likely to be moved soon,” tweets Heyman, who notes that the Cubs and Red Sox are among the more plausible landing spots. The Indians and Astros, too, are potential destinations. The Sox are plenty familiar with Ziegler, having acquired him in late July just two years ago for the stretch run. A free agent at season’s end, Ziegler has been on a terrific run dating back to June 1, yielding just three runs on 15 hits and 11 walks with 22 strikeouts and an 81 percent ground-ball rate in 29 innings. He struck out a pair in a perfect inning of work today. Ziegler is earning $9MM in 2018 and is owed about $3.05MM of that sum through season’s end.