Looking to trade for an impact bat this month? Options are limited, but here are 17 position players who are projected by Steamer to post a weighted on-base average of at least .321 (the American League non-pitcher average mark) from here on out.
First Basemen/Designated Hitters
- Jose Abreu, White Sox (.351 projected wOBA) – As a player about to hit free agency on a non-contending team, you’d think Abreu would be a prime candidate to be traded by the White Sox. However, interest is mutual in keeping the 32-year-old in Chicago, and that seems the most likely outcome.
- Brandon Belt, Giants (.347) – Though underpowered for his position, Belt gets on base and can still help an offense. The obstacle to a trade is his contract, which still has more than $37MM remaining through 2021. He also has a limited no-trade clause that allows him to block deals to ten teams.
- Justin Smoak, Blue Jays (.347) – Smoak is best utilized in a platoon, since he doesn’t hit well against left-handed pitching. He’ll have less than $3MM left on his contract at the trade deadline and is a strong candidate to be traded.
- Miguel Cabrera, Tigers (.345) – Cabrera’s power hasn’t shown up this season, and he’ll require a DH spot. But the real impediment is the $142MM owed to him through 2023, plus a full no-trade clause. It seems impossible the Tigers could find a way to unload that contract, even if an accomplished veteran hitter like Cabrera could help a contender.
- Yasiel Puig, Reds (.348) – As rough as Puig’s year has been, from May 3rd onward he’s hitting .275/.335/.534 in 194 plate appearances. A case could be made that he’s the best hitter available this month, though with playoff odds of 6.9%, the Reds might hang around just enough to prevent a Puig trade. He’s a free agent after the season.
- Michael Conforto, Mets (.347) – The Mets have similar playoff odds to the Reds, and may be reluctant to punt on their season unless that changes. Even then, trading the 26-year-old Conforto with two years of control remaining seems unlikely.
- Nicholas Castellanos, Tigers (.344) – A free agent after the season, Castellanos is very likely to be traded this month. At the deadline he’ll have about $3.3MM left on his contract. Castellanos continues to struggle defensively, but he’s clearly an above-average hitter.
- Trey Mancini, Orioles (.334) – Mancini, 27, is having what appears to be a breakout year and probably should have represented the Orioles at the All-Star Game. He’s controlled through 2022, so the Orioles should be in no rush to trade him if the offers aren’t impressive. But teams seeking a controllable corner outfielder/first baseman will certainly be calling on Mancini.
- Jorge Soler, Royals (.333) – Perhaps the most remarkable stat about the oft-injured Soler is that he’s played in every single Royals game this year. A healthy amount of time at DH plays a part in that. Soler could wind up with 40 home runs if he stays healthy, though he’s not hitting for average or drawing walks this year. He still brings undeniable right-handed power, and he’s controlled through 2021.
- Starling Marte, Pirates (.333) – Since returning from a collision-related injury on April 30th, Marte is hitting .295/.340/.485 in 257 plate appearances. He’s also the only player here who profiles as a regular in center field. Marte can be controlled affordably through 2021. However, the Pirates don’t seem inclined to give up on their season, so Marte and the rest of their outfielders will probably stay put.
- Mitch Haniger, Mariners (.329) – Haniger, recovering from a ruptured testicle, is not expected back until after the All-Star break. The Mariners control him through 2022 and seem unlikely to rush him back in late July to make such a crucial trade.
- Domingo Santana, Mariners (.327) – Santana has two years of control remaining, and the Mariners will likely prefer to keep him in their outfield with Haniger as they try to contend in the near future. But with Jerry Dipoto at the helm, I had to list Santana here.
- Corey Dickerson, Pirates (.323)
- Melky Cabrera, Pirates (.321)
- Derek Dietrich, Reds (.329) – As with Puig, the Reds may be close enough to contention (and the offers unimpressive enough) that they ride with the players they have rather than execute a sell-off. But with Scooter Gennett back, the Reds could at least consider trading him or Dietrich this month.
- Tommy La Stella, Angels (.321) – The Angels’ surprising All-Star is under team control only through next year, and the club’s playoff odds sit at 2.2%. Given that La Stella only just hit his way out of bench duty with a stellar half-season, the Halos would likely have a hard time cashing him in for notable prospects.
- Wilson Ramos, Mets (.321) – If you’re seeking an offensive-minded catcher, Ramos is your guy. The Mets could try to unload the $13.5MM still left on his contract, though they’d have to hand over the reins to Tomas Nido full-time at least for the rest of the season.