It’s unclear whether the Diamondbacks will trade their franchise player, first baseman Paul Goldschmidt, though Buster Olney of ESPN (subscription required) hears from rival evaluators that they are “intent” on dealing the 31-year-old. While Goldschmidt has consistently been one of the majors’ best players during his career, it’s unlikely the Diamondbacks would receive a significant haul in exchange for his final year of team control, observes Olney, who notes that most contenders aren’t seeking a first baseman. But St. Louis and Houston continue to show a good amount of interest in Goldschmidt, per Olney, which jibes with a previous report from Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic. Olney adds that rival clubs believe the Astros have seemingly tried to move young right-hander J.B. Bukauskas, their eighth-ranked prospect at MLB.com, in trade talks. Similarly, the Yankees were “pushing” left-handed pitching prospect Justus Sheffield in Goldschmidt discussions, Olney reports. Sheffield’s no longer in the picture for New York, though, as it traded him to Seattle this week in a deal for lefty James Paxton.
- Back to Houston, which has been shopping near the top of the market for free-agent outfielders, according to Olney, who lists A.J. Pollock, Andrew McCutchen and Michael Brantley among their targets. Unless the Astros deem soon-to-be 22-year-old prospect Kyle Tucker ready for a full-time role, they have an opening in the outfield, where George Springer and Josh Reddick are their only obvious starters. Signing Pollock, a center fielder, would enable them to move Springer back to a corner after he spent the majority of 2017-18 in center. Pollock’s likely to rake in the biggest payday of the trio, though; further, given that Pollock comes with a qualifying offer attached, adding him would also cost the Astros their second-highest draft pick in 2019 and $500K in international pool space.
- The Mariners have been the most active team on the trade market this offseason, having already dealt Paxton and catcher Mike Zunino. With aggressive general manager Jerry Dipoto at the helm and the M’s desire to take a step back in 2019, more trades involving their veterans are likely on the way. However, it continues to look as though the Mariners will keep their two top players, outfielder Mitch Haniger and closer Edwin Diaz. It would take overwhelming offers for the Mariners to seriously consider moving either Haniger or Diaz, Olney tweets. Both stars are controllable for the next four years, including another pre-arbitration season apiece.