You didn’t need to check our ranking of the 75 top trade deadline candidates to know that (former?) Orioles star Manny Machado was the best rental player on the market this summer. He’s an immensely talented, mid-prime player, the likes of which are rarely seen on the block this time of year.
Admittedly, though, deciding how to fill in that list behind Machado was not easy. The most valuable remaining potential trade candidates are those who come with future contract rights, making them less than likely to end up on the move. As for the remaining rental players, let’s just say they all have some demerits. Given the difficulties I had in deciding just how to rank the next-best players who’ll be dealt for only a few months of service, I thought it would be interesting to pose the same basic dilemma I faced to the MLBTR readership.
Note that I’m including Cole Hamels ($6MM buyout on a $20MM club option), Mike Moustakas ($1MM buyout on $15MM mutual option), and Joakim Soria ($1MM buyout on $10MM mutual option) in the poll despite the fact that all come with some future contractual considerations. While not technically rentals, these players will mostly be treated that way by the market. The mutual options are quite unlikely to come into play, in particular. While the Hamels situation is more complicated, it seems to me he should be considered alongside these other starting pitching options.
If you want my thoughts on the players in question, check out the blurbs in the rankings post linked to above. Which do you think is the best asset from this group? (Response order randomized. Link for app users.)