There’s been an “uptick” in the level of trade interest in Indians righty Trevor Bauer today, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports (subscription required). Rosenthal adds that the Indians are becoming increasingly tempted to make a deal. Joel Sherman of the New York Post, meanwhile, tweets that several executives throughout the league now believe the Indians are more likely to trade Bauer than to keep him.
More interestingly, Rosenthal tweets that the Reds and Indians have had discussions about a potential Bauer swap. Outfield prospect Taylor Trammell has been a part of those topics, Rosenthal notes, although Trammell is in the midst of a down season in Double-A and doesn’t exactly fit the bill of a big-league-ready asset the Reds can plug directly onto the 25-man roster. Cleveland is marketing Bauer more due to looming payroll concerns than because the organization is waving a white flag on the current season, and the common line of thinking has been that they’d need an immediate roster supplement in order to consider parting with Bauer.
Cincinnati’s interest, too, suggests that the club isn’t giving up on its push to end its ongoing rebuild. The Reds added Sonny Gray, Tanner Roark, Alex Wood and Yasiel Puig over the winter in an effort to contend in the NL Central. Those efforts didn’t put the club in contention for a division title, but Gray looks reborn as a quality starter and was extended for three more years. While Roark and Wood are slated to hit free agency (as is Puig), Bauer would give the Reds another option for the 2020 rotation. The trio of Bauer, Gray and Luis Castillo would become on of the more formidable top three in the game and would position Cincinnati well for a 2020 push before even reaching the offseason.
Unsurprisingly, it seems that the recent outburst in which Bauer hurled a ball over the center field fence out of being frustration upon being lifted from a start hasn’t deterred clubs from expressing interest. That incident resulted in a fine for Bauer but not a suspension, tweets MLB Network’s Jon Heyman, but there won’t be any additional action from the league. Indians skipper Terry Francona spoke of potentially levying some additional team-issued discipline for Bauer (link via Paul Hoynes of Cleveland.com), but that would of course only come into play if Bauer remains with Cleveland beyond tomorrow afternoon’s deadline.
Interest in Bauer has been fairly widespread, with the Padres, Yankees and Astros all linked to the right-hander (in addition to the aforementioned Reds). Houston has had “recent” talks about Bauer, tweets MLB.com’s Jon Morosi, though it’s not clear whether that’s indicative of talks earlier today or simply confirmation of the prior talks that have been reported upon in recent weeks.