Joey Gallo’s name has been at the forefront of multiple trade rumors for months, though Evan Grant of The Dallas Morning News reports that the Rangers “have become more aggressive” in their pursuit of a possible contract extension with the outfielder. Gallo has one year of arbitration remaining before being eligible for free agency following the 2022 campaign. It isn’t known whether Texas has actually made Gallo an offer, as agent Scott Boras declined to comment on the subject yesterday.
It isn’t unusual for teams to make what might essentially be a last-ditch effort at a long-term deal prior to the deadline. (Just earlier this week, Starling Marte and the Marlins held negotiations that didn’t end up panning out, so Marte is now looking like a prime candidate to be dealt prior to the July 30th deadline.) Of course, it also isn’t common for these midseason talks to actually result in a new contract. While Gallo has expressed his fondness for remaining with the Rangers, striking a new deal in the midst of the season would certainly count as a surprise for multiple factors — perhaps chief amongst them that Gallo is represented by Boras, whose clients usually end up testing the free agent market.
An extension would mean that Gallo would be putting a lot of faith in the Rangers’ front office that their current rebuild would bear fruit, as the team doesn’t look in position to contend by next season. From the Rangers’ perspective, obviously they would like to keep a player like Gallo in the fold, but his greatest value to the club at this point might be as a trade chip.
Gallo’s name has already been linked to the Yankees and Padres on the rumor mill, and Grant adds that the Blue Jays (who have been scouting Texas games over the past week) are “perhaps the Rangers’ most favored potential trade partner.” The Jays could have interest in any number of possible Rangers trade chips, and considering Toronto’s need for arms, Gallo might perhaps be lower on the Blue Jays’ radar than pitchers like Kyle Gibson or Ian Kennedy.