Yesterday’s news wire included quite a lot of chatter surrounding Orioles infielder Manny Machado, who is the clear top player available on this summer’s trade market. Last we checked, the Brewers and Dodgers were said to be working hard at making a deal with the Yankees also entering the fray.
Here’s the latest:
- The Brewers and Dodgers are indeed still trying to sort out arrangements with the Baltimore front office, per Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic, who provides more details on the talks in a subscription link. Rosenthal suggests that the O’s are targeting Milwaukee hurler Corbin Burnes and Dodgers prospects Gavin Lux and Dustin May, none of whom appear to be available in talks. Notably, per the report, the Brewers “would prefer to build their package” around outfielder Brett Phillips and pitching prospect Luis Ortiz — both highly-ranked young talents in their own rights, perhaps suggesting that the Orioles have had some success in generating quality offers. Of course, every team will have its own preferences on young talent, and prospect rankings are little more than a general guide for outside observers. Broadly, it does not sound as if either the Milwaukee or Los Angeles organizations are close to striking a deal for Machado. It also seemingly remains an open question whether the Orioles are really interested in dealing him before the All-Star Game. That’d surely be the approach taken if the club feels it can best maximize the return right now, though it would also be tough to see Machado lined up in a different uniform down the street in D.C.
- Meanwhile, after Machado himself threw a bit of cold water on the notion of a shift back to third base — which would be the only way he’d really fit in with the Yankees — New York GM Brian Cashman cast further shade on the concept of a move to the Bronx. As Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports, Cashman suggests he’s focused primarily on boosting his team’s starting pitching. The third base position, he says, is a clear strength for the club. That hardly rules out a move for Machado, of course, though Cashman did make clear that he views it as his “job” to “attack weakness” on the roster. All things considered, it seems this intriguing match is a low-likelihood match, but one that shouldn’t be dismissed entirely.
- Of course, some teams that once figured to represent suitors no longer really seem to be in the mix. That’s the case for the Cubs, Bob Nightengale of USA Today writes. He cites an O’s source that pegs the Diamondbacks as another leading contender to land Machado, along with the two noted above, so it seems Arizona is still involved even if the team hasn’t been linked as strongly in recent days. But the Chicago organization seems understandably pleased with its existing lineup, with pitching representing a greater need. Likewise, the Cardinals don’t appear to be involved on Machado, which Ben Frederickson of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch argues is a reflection of the front office’s accurate assessment of the team’s outlook.