There’s no doubt the 2020 trade deadline will be the most unusual in baseball history, and The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal (subscription required) looks at some of the many unique aspects of the lead-up to August 31. Everything about how teams evaluate their own rosters, decide on being buyers or sellers, scout other teams’ talent, and potentially spend to acquire that talent will be in flux, plus there are some factors unique to the threat of COVID-19.
For instance, there might have to be some back-channel negotiations with trade candidates to ensure that a player wouldn’t opt out of the season rather than be dealt to an undesirable location. Just the idea of changing locations whatsoever also carries issues, as Rosenthal notes that intake testing could delay a new acquisition’s arrival to his new team by a few days (no small amount of time in a shortened season), and there is inherent risk in travel and in introducing the health x-factor of an unfamiliar player into a new clubhouse.
In regards to the latter concern, agent Scott Boras contacted Rosenthal with the following message (Twitter link): “So that deadline deals are not impacted by COVID, I am letting all owners know if any of our players are traded and asked to leave their existing teams’ protocols, we have arranged a private jet protocol to allow players to be safely transported (between clubs).”
More from around the baseball world…
- Rosenthal’s piece also notes that the Rangers have been getting trade interest in Lance Lynn, though a move doesn’t seem likely with Texas battling for a playoff spot. Lynn theoretically would be a good trade candidate if the Rangers were to fall out of the race, as the veteran is under contract for $8MM in 2021 and has been one of the sport’s best pitchers this season. After yesterday’s complete-game victory over the Rockies, Lynn has a sparkling 1.11 ERA, 3.00 K/BB rate, and 11.0 K/9 over a league-best 32 1/3 innings.
- Athletics reliever Burch Smith suffered a right forearm strain during Saturday’s game with the Giants. (Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle was among those to report the news.) The hurler will undergo an MRI on Monday and an injured list placement seems inevitable, though the A’s are hopeful that the injury isn’t structural in nature. Smith allowed three runs in 1 2/3 innings of work tonight, boosting his ERA to 2.25 after he delivered scoreless work over his previous 10 1/3 frames for Oakland. Smith was dealt from the Giants to the A’s back in February.
- Tommy Pham and Wil Myers both made early exits from the Padres’ game with the Diamondbacks tonight. Pham left during the second inning due to cramping in both calves, while Myers left in the fifth inning due to lower back tightness.
- White Sox prospect Jake Burger is now represented by The Bledsoe Agency, MLB Network’s Jon Heyman reports (Twitter link). Picked 11th overall in the 2017 draft, Burger’s young career has been waylaid with injuries, as two torn Achilles tendons and a severe heel bruise have kept him off the field since 2017. Burger’s switch has been noted in MLB Trade Rumors’ updated Agency Database.
Does burger count as a baseball player at this point.
he’s been playing in a collegiate summer league “on loan.”
Down with OBP
Well we ain’t reading about you in these pages.
Stop trying to make a statement with your screen name, it’s embarrassing.
Especially a bad statement.
I think Down with OBP’s name escapes both of you. I’m down with OBP (but you know me).
It’s time to start giving Texas some consideration and stop writing them off as potential contenders. They have great pitching and an offense that is only getting better in a division that hasn’t been very good.
to be fair though, in a 60 game season a few bad games can make a contender a seller. not saying the Rangers are going to sell, but its worth considering trade assets for any team that isnt looking like a playoff lock at this point. you can also factor in that an expanded playoff format may also increase sellers willing to capitalize on percieved lower supply and higher demand. so even a strong team may pass on a chance at a playoff run in a year where things are so wonky.
Coming from a die hard Texas fan, who only wants this team to succeed… I wouldn’t hate us trading Lynn right now… Now, let me get this straight. I do not want to see him traded, but if we get an “ace like” return for him, then I’d consider.
Something I saw on twitter after last night’s game was a post that said that Lynn reminded some guy of Greg Maddux because of how well he keeps hitters off balance with his fastball. That made me kind of excited. I know it wasn’t a big name writer pushing his opinions, but those words coming from ANYBODY, just get me excited.
That being said, the thing that will push Lynn over the top in a trade is not only his extra year of control, but his contract too. Both are really enticing. That is what will make a trade Lynn so valuable. I’m rambling, so here comes another comment.
Now to add on to what thatdudetg said, Texas is not written off by any means, and thanks for pointing it out. Since the Angels series last weekend when we swept them, we have been ON FIRE. From a 3-8 record a week ago to a 10-9 record tonight, this team is killing it. And if I’m being honest, the real change happened when Derek Dietrich stepped foot on the field against Seattle. Ever since then, this team has not only had passion, but also attitude. To go full circle, at the beginning of the season, for the first two weeks, this team seriously looked depressed. Nobody smiled, our wins didn’t feel like wins at all, and the players didn’t have personalities. They went to work, did their job, and went home. 9-5, 24/7 365. It. Was. Dull.
Tonight Choo got out of his unlucky slump, Dietrich homered, Gibson earned his first win as a Ranger, and we have won the series against Colorado. I expect to be buyers at the deadline, but the game can change quick.
Notes on our pitching: Minor was told to only throw 75 pitches against Seattle his last time out because he has seen a velocity dip ever since to quick restart to the season. He looked good in that outing, and went scoreless. Lastly, Kolby Allard has been great this year. He has good command, and the stuff to get many batters out (including Mike Trout, apparently). If Minor starts rolling again, just expect this team to be in the postseason.
It would have to be an extreme overpay to trade Lynn I expect. New stadium, chance to make the playoffs for the first time in awhile. I think we might rent a 1B bat and try to make the playoffs with our current pitching staff. Fingers crossed for Allard. I just got the skyblue alternate hat and its friggin sweet.
Lance Lynn is 33 years old and has 1 year left on his contract. It would be like the Mookie Betts trade last year. I think everyone knows Betts got nowhere near what he would have been worth if he had more control. Lynn has almost no control left, is 100 pounds heavier than Betts (overweight) and, oh yeah, he is nowhere near as good as Betts. Therefore Texas would get MAYBE a Jeter Downs on his own type of return. No Alex Verdugo, no Connor Wong. Sorry guys.
The Human Rain Delay
#48 prospect Downs, hmm
Whats Mookie got ta do with dis?
Lynn is an throwing like an ace and pitching is scarce. Unlike Betts on a 30 million dollar deal. Lynn on an 8 million dollar deal is a bargain. They’ll probably get a headliner similar to Downs + some other further off but high ceiling guys. But you just remember…… never speak in absolutes, Javabean! That’s how you end up looking like a big old buffoon!
No thanks to all the teams thinking they can trade for Lynn in exchange for a bad of baseballs or some “high ceiling” prospect.
What about a good of baseballs and a low-ceiling prospect?
That private jet protocol of Boras must be popular with the loonies around this country. Perhaps he should run stick it into each new contract “his” clients sign?
no matter what anyone says boras treats his clients very well. his misinformation tactics to teams must be part of getting the most for his players.
And of he uses his company plane for business purposes all of a sudden there’s massive write offs in depreciation alone, ignoring maintenance, insurance, and other expenses.
Don’t kid yourself that it’s from the good of his slimy little heart
We found the irrational Boras hate
I think its unreasonable to say he’s doing what he does simply out of kindness, but these sorts of things benefit both him and his players, as do his negotiating tactics.
If it is a company plane, he gets to claim the depreciation whether he uses it to fly his players with it at the deadline or not. Company owed asset so the company can claim the depreciation……..smh….
Jake Burger just can’t seem to get a break and win.
Grandfather Hamilton Burger had the same kind of luck every time against…
Perry Mason !!
Perry and Paul Drake did kinky things together.
The Human Rain Delay
There’s about 25 teams that should be ringing Texas on Lynn-
Personally, If Im Texas, Im holding him unless Im blown away and even seeing if an extension is possible.
He should net a top 50 top 120 and lottery ticket if dealt no problem
I dont think Texas will know if they are out by the 31st so with the return on Minor so low at this point I’d just ride out the contract and try and contend the rest of this year
Braves/Cubs seem like great fits for Lynn
Your return is a little heavy for basically 1 year plus 30 days of control.
Id say best you get an organization top 5 that’s in the MLB 80-100 overall. Then you get an org top 25-30th plus your lottery ticket at the high end.
Might be looking at closer to a pair of org top 10-25’s and a lottery.
Lynn has been great for the first 3 weeks. BUT. After watching that happened to the dodgers, and, knowing that 2021 is by no means a lock both because of virus concerns and labor disillusionment, you’re just got going to get a kings ransom for 30 days plus whatever part of 2021 gets played.
Which is ok. Texas is better if he stays there anyways.
what’s worth noting is that there may be more interest with the expanded playoffs, or at least enough to offset any concerns about investing assets into next year. and neither of those 2021 concerns are that valid quite frankly. CBA isnt up until AFTER 2021.
The Human Rain Delay
I think your underestimating the value of a great Sp –
Your gonna get 2 shots at the playoffs with him for dirt dirt dirt cheap-
Money is going to be a bigger factor next year- Theres about 27 teams that need pitching –
Next Free agent class is HORRID for Sp…with again 27 competitors…….Do you really want to dump multiple years at Ray Stroman Paxton Q or Ordoozi????? Nah gimme Lynn for this years run and next at that controlled cost
A 50 and 120 is def worth 2 shots with him- And then you can try and extend as well…. But I agree staying put is the play for Tex and Id even inquire to extend myself…You just cant find pitching these days, you surely dont give it away when you have it is my thought
They are opening that new staduim (to the public) next year as well
The Human Rain Delay
And for reference Stroman got the Jays their 4th and 6th best prospect in the org with exactly the same years/money left-
Lynn is wayyyyyy better than Stroman and the Mets were OUT of the race when they traded for him just wanting to get that extra year this year with him –
A 10 and 25 would be an insult beyond insults and a reason to never pick up your call again –
Bird in hand, prospects usually turn into Taylor Ward, you dont think Arte Moreno would like to see Lynn in an Angel Uniform?? Luis Renigfro was their 3rd ranked prospect last year. Maybe you’d get the clearer answer from Trout?
Neither prospect in the Stroman trade was a top 100 at the time of the trade. Yet you are looking for a Jasson Dominguez, Luis Campusano, Tarik Skubal or Nick Madrigal as the headliner for Lynn? Along with more? I don’t see that happening.
The Human Rain Delay
The difference between a 50 or a 100 is usually a month and a half hot streak in the minors-
Lynn is better than Stroman
Its 2 playoff runs and a chance to extend
Sp is scarce as ever
Money will be a lot tighter 2021 enhancing Lynns value
I will agree most GMs overvalue their own prospects, along with many of the posters here , but all it takes is 1 –
Dodgers literally just threw a 50 in the Red Sox trade (Downs) for free because the Boston media had a tantrum (???) ? – That same 50 Downs was gotten for a year of Puig & Wood the year before btw!!!
wild bill tetley
Javla, that would depend on which list you used. Kay was literally #100 on one list.
The other pitcher, Simeon Woods-Richardson, was 18 turning 19 in Single-A and was slated to start in AA this year as a 19 year old. A 19 year old in AA putting up good numbers is exactly the kind of prospect you hope to get from a Stroman deal. There have been guys on the prospect list who’ve flamed out or should not be there.
Granted, if you feel the Jays should have earned more from the deal that is a valid argument. That falls on the GM more than anything.
The Human Rain Delay- Nah, make that 22 teams because Lance Lynn couldn’t pitch in NY. if his life depended on it. I definitely agree with the Cubs/Braves being a great fit for Lynn. He still is a really good pitcher, he just can’t pitch in NY
NY is an MLB city like the rest of them. There’s no magic formula or special character trait that allows a player to succeed or fail there.
@gbs42- Are you from NY? Probably not. So how would you be able to tell me if I was right or wrong? Truth be told a lot of players can’t play here so it has nothing to do with what your saying. But If you have a magic formula or a special character trait you definitely CAN succeed in NY.
I’m not from New York, but are you from LA, Detroit, Atlanta, or any other MLB city? The same thing you’re saying about NY could be said about them. The idea that NY is some completely different place that no other city can compare to is just hubris.
@gbs42- ask Zach Greinke If he could pitch in NY? He proved he could pitch in LA. Ask Sonny Gray about pitching in NY? He is a really good pitcher. Look how good he is In Cincinnati. So your wrong.
Anecdotal evidence of some players playing well outside NY but not in NY doesn’t prove your point. The same can be said about players in other cities. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. It’s just overblown because it’s the Big Apple.
@gbs42- Here is a Yankee starting 5:
Javier Vasquez. All 5 had success not pitching In NY. Need more proof?
I’ve definitely heard that some players don’t like the NY spotlight, and I can believe it. Plus I remember the NY fans being huge jerks to Cliff Lee’s wife and that soured him on the fanbase lol! Joking aside my brother lives in Manhattan and I’ve been to soooo many games there. It’s a cool place but man I can believe it is different than pitching in Detroit or Arlington or Minnesota. Different expectations, different pressures.
Teams LOVE their young prospects. They aren’t as crazy about 33 year old pitchers with 1 year of control.
I definitely think 3 teams will be coming out of the AL West for the playoffs this season. The Athletics, Rangers, and of course the cheating ‘Stros.
Astros are in trouble if they cant get a bit of pitching.
@DarkSide830- how could the Stros’ be in trouble when their cheating all the time? Thinking they’ll get in. I have the Yankees, Rays, Twinkies, Indians, White Sox, Athletics, Rangers, and the cheating ‘Stros’ getting in the playoffs. Who else has a chance, DarkSide830?
America’s Favorite Cheating Team will get the pitching they need to get in the playoffs. America’s Other Favorite Cheating Team the (Red Suks) will be watching the playoffs on TV this season where they can steal more signs from their couch, loveseat, or la-Z boy
i mean how though. their arms are dropping like flies. if they lose someone lime Greinke at this point they’re toast.
Yankee Beltran will still be helping his team the “Astro’s” way
@LetGoOfMyLeg- Is this the thing you keep telling yourself to make you feel better? Then again where is evidence or proof of the Yankee‘s cheating? Look’s & sounds like you don’t got a leg to stand on. So need to let go of it.
I thought America’s Favorite Team that everyone loves to hate were flooded with pitching prospects? What happened? Where have you gone Forrest Whitley, J.B Bukauskas, Francis Martes, Jose Urquidy, Cristian Javier, Bryan Abreu, Rogelio Armenteros, Brandon Bielak, & Joe Biagini? Somebody please tell me who will step right ^ and help them cheatin’ Stros’
How Much Will It Help My New York Yankees If Brian Cashman,Once Again,Makes A Trade For Lance Lynn,To Add Pitching Depth & He Also Makes A Trade For Ken Giles,To Give Them Another Bullpen Piece?
@Jack Johnson- Lance Lynn isn’t being traded to the Yankees again. Texas is likely a playoff team this year. The Yankees bullpen is fine no need for Giles either. I can see him definitely going back to the Phillies again via trade. Then again the Buffalo Blue Jays, NY’s 2nd best team could always keep him if they are involved in a playoff run this year. Stranger things have happened.
The 16 team playoffs field is a boon to the truly scrub teams like the Pirates who have no shot at the playoffs even if they expand to 26 teams.
Should be a seller’s market.
If only they had anything to sell…
Adam Frazier excite anyone?
Keone Kela seems like a nice guy.
The three times a week Polanco gets his bat on the ball it goes far.
Josh Bell and so on to.
I feel like Polanco has morw value then he’s given credit for.
Lynn trade value couldn’t get higher. The Rangers should trade Lynn,Shoo,Frazier, and Elvis. The Rangers had there chance to trade Minor when his value was high. Lynn is 33 if he was 3-4 years younger I would keep him but nothing wrong with dealing Lynn and others now for much younger players.
@Rangers29. Would you trade Odor for Stanton? One bad contract for another. Odor in Yankees stadium has great potential
Dude, not a friggin chance! Odor is off the books pretty soon. Noone wants that Stanton gig.
Someone will take Stanton if Yankees eat half his contract. Stanton at 12-15 Million a year could be a bargain for a desperate team.
Stanton has more negative trade value than any other player in baseball except maybe Felipe Vazquez.
The Rangers have a very realistic chance of making the playoffs. There is no reason to sell. It would have to be a massive overpay.
Why would any team make a trade involving any significant talent, especially young talent, in order to “win” in a season that is going to forever be considered a cipher, if not an outright joke?
No one is going to respect the winner of the 2020 World Series. The whole thing is just one big asterisk.
Where is our previous pitching coach for the padres?
I miss him.