Trade Deadline Predictions – AL East

by JohnBowen

By Bob Owens

Usually as February nears, people look forward to pitchers and catchers reporting, the swimsuit edition of Sports Illustrated and reading articles about how their beloved baseball team will win the World Series come October. I used to look forward to those things myself. (Still look forward to the first two things)Then it occurred to me that the majority of these upcoming articles and columns will be, at the very least wrong, while a majority could be downright bone-headed.  So I decided to see what player or players could be traded come July or earlier should their team play putridly. I started with the AL East, and if this is deemed to be worthwhile, I,  or someone else  will try to tackle the other 5 divisions (hopefully).

Baltimore Orioles

Position player: Adam Jones (CF)

Jones was nearly traded this off-season, to the Braves, who know a thing or two about talent. Jones plays a vital position, and is just 26 years old about to enter his prime. But this would allow the Orioles the chance to augment their farm before he gets expensive, and as we saw with Colby Rasmus, teams might be willing to trade young outfielders more willingly than other positions.

Pitcher: Jeremy Guthrie

For years I have heard his name thrown around at the deadline, with teams and fans wondering what it would take to pry a durable ( last 3 seasons he has thrown at least 200 innings) AL East proven starter. Obviously, the answer has been too much for the teams, as he has stayed put in Baltimore. But again, new GM Dan Duquette may feel now is the time to shed some payroll and get a viable prospect or two.

Boston Red Sox

Position player:  Kevin Youkilis (1B/3B)

Of course this assumes he is healthy after undergoing surgery this off-season for a hernia. If healthy, he has the ability to play solid defense at both 3rd and 1st base. He is entering the final year of his contract, although there is a team option for 2013. He has two rings.

Pitcher: Alfredo Aceves

I will go out on a limb and say Alfredo Aceves, although if the Sox give him the 5th spot in the rotation, I will re-consider. After having a very nice year last year in the bullpen, a chorus of Sox players, led by David Ortiz, claimed he should have been in the Sox rotation last September, and I agreed. And so far, the Red Sox have told Aceves to prep as a starter, although I keep hearing rumors that they are looking at Roy Oswalt. Which could mean that even after the Sox lost Jonathan Papelbon to free agency and Daniel Bard to the rotation, they still went out and acquired Mark Melancon, and Andrew Bailey, who will most likely be ahead of him in the bullpen. And thus be wasting his talents. The Sox need to either install him as a starter, or try to trade him if they sign another starter if he is 3rd fiddle in the bullpen. And for a guy who could start or close, and has played in Boston and New York, they should be able to get something for him. Although, as a Red Sox fan, I hope he wins the 5th spot in the rotation.

New York Yankees

Position player: Nick Swisher (1B/OF)

Swisher is in the last year of his contract, which increases the possibility of him being traded. Get something for him in late July, rather than get nothing for him in the off-season, without offering arbitration, a risky concept. Swisher also can handle 1st base, and has a reputation for being a great guy in the clubhouse.

Pitcher: Phil Hughes

Like Aceves, he could be wasting his talents in the bullpen, behind Mariano Rivera and possibly a slew of others. Moreover, some teams may privately see Hughes as a starter, when considering his age, and his minor league resume, thus increasing the talent they give to the Yankees. However, if Hughes wins the battle for the 5th starter out of spring training I would be hesitant to part with him. Very close to the same scenario as Aceves.

Tampa Bay Rays

Position player: Reid Brignac (SS)

This is a tough team for me to find a tradable player as I think they will win the East, and thus be augmenting their roster come July- not parting with proven talent. That being said, they have a very good SS prospect in the minors in Hak-Ju-Lee who will start at Double-A to start the season, and could find himself worthy of a promotion rapidly – which, in turn, could make Brignac expendable. The fact he is young (26) and plays an up-the-middle-position will make him a very valuable commodity.

Pitcher: Kyle Farnsworth

Kind of a wimp-out on my part as I was looking at all their young pitching and was going to compare them to Mat Latos and Gio Gonzalez and see what kind of haul the Rays should get. But I kept saying to myself, you do not part with young pitching just because another team did. Plus, bullpen arms are always traded at the deadline, and Farnsworth fits the bill.

Toronto Blue Jays

Position player: Jeff Mathis (C)

Another team that was difficult to predict. But with J.P Arenchibia doing the bulk of the catching, and Travis d’Arnaud  the MVP of the Eastern League  the Jays may be in the enviable position of having a catcher who is a trade chip – should be able to land them something.

Pitcher – Nobody really sticks out to me. Sorry.

Okay, time for you guys to rip me a new one, and tell me what I did wrong.

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13 Responses to “Trade Deadline Predictions – AL East”

  1. Mark Says:

    I can definitely see the jays trading a C, but with darnaud coming, maybe they’d trade Arencibia (tigers?). He’d bring something back; Mathis wouldn’t. This is pure speculation though. I just can’t see the jays carrying both darnaud and Arencibia.

  2. Bob Says:

    Mark, thanks for the comment. At least we agree on the position for the Jays. And yes Arencibia would bring back more than Mathis.

  3. brautigan Says:

    I think Hughes could benefit by a change of scenery. The Yankees demand for Hughes may be too steep for teams to consider, and the bottom line is, trading for Hughes is a high risk/high reward situation.

  4. Cameron Says:

    I know Toronto’s REALLY high on both JPA and D’Arnaud, but I doubt they find a way to keep both with adequate PA.

  5. Raul Says:

    Can one of them play the outfield?

    Because it’s pretty clear that Travis Snider can’t hit the broad side of a barn.

  6. Cameron Says:

    I don’t think either of them have any experience, but I think JPA might be converted if necessary. He’s the worse glove of the two.

  7. Raul Says:

    JPA is 26.
    He should probably go.

    Who needs a catcher?
    LA? They’re looking to shed payroll…see if they’ll take JPA and crap for Ethier and crap…

  8. Cameron Says:

    Maybe San Diego takes him for Nick Hundley so they can finally push that payroll into the single digits.

  9. Raul Says:

    LOL @ Cameron

  10. Raul Says:

    The Red Sox named Carlos Febles manager of a Minor League team.

    CARLOS.
    FEBLES.

  11. Cameron Says:

    Wow, the second half of Dos Carlos? That’s a flashback.

  12. Raul Says:

    I feel like the Dean at Faber University.

    2011 Mr. Crawford: .255/.289/.405

    …and Mr. Blutarsky (Adam Dunn): .159/.292/.277

  13. Raul Says:

    The Baltimore Orioles signed Wilson Betemit to a 2-year contract.
    I’m glad to see Dan Duquette is still a moron.

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