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Spring Training Trade Candidates
By Tim Dierkes from MLB Trade Rumors.
[ February 17, 2009 at 12:13 PM ] [ Comments (47) ] [ Full Story ]  [ Filed under: Features ]
[ Tagged: , , ]
Big trades are a rarity in Spring Training.  Still, possibilities emerge as rosters begin to take shape.  Here's a close look at 10 Spring Training trade candidates. 
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1.  Cardinals outfielders.  If everyone's healthy, the Cardinals have more outfielders than they need.  The top trade candidates seem to be Skip Schumaker, Rick Ankiel, and Chris Duncan.  Schumaker is a candidate for second base, plus he's cheap.  Ankiel, though, is a Scott Boras client in his walk year.  If Colby Rasmus comes on strong Ankiel figures to be dealt at some point in 2009. 

2.  Nick Swisher/Xavier Nady.  The Yankees have said for a while now they'd be comfortable keeping both Swisher and Nady.  They've got a few health risks on the roster, so maintaining the depth makes sense.  Possible suitors such as the Braves and Nationals are out of the running, having brought in free agent bats.  Plus, neither player's contract looks great right now: Nady at $6.55MM and Swisher having $22MM coming over 2009-11.  If everyone's healthy, the Yanks can revisit a trade in a few months. 

3.  Jermaine Dye.  Dye is another example of a player whose contract looked fine in November but less so now.  He'll get $11.5MM in 2009, and his $12MM mutual option for '10 has a $1MM buyout.  He can also block a trade to six clubs.  As bold as Sox GM Ken Williams is, it would be hard to replace Dye's power.  It seems more likely that the White Sox trade Brian Anderson or DeWayne Wise. 

4.  Nick Johnson.  You could've made a case for Johnson in the salary dump section of this post, given his $5.5MM commitment this year and inability to stay on the field.  Unlike those guys, though, Johnson provides a .400 OBP when he does play.  The A's had interest at one point, but it's been quiet lately.  The Mariners could also make sense.  Trading Johnson while eating a few bucks would be the easiest way for the Nationals to alleviate their current outfield/1B logjam. 

5.  Garrett Atkins/Huston Street.  If players such as Todd Helton, Ian Stewart, and Manny Corpas are healthy and effective in 2009, Atkins and Street could be deemed expendable.  The Rockies may be better served letting both players rebuild value after disappointing 2009 seasons, though.  They'd want good young pitching for Atkins, but there are questions about his performance away from Coors.  Perhaps if Matt Holliday mashes in Oakland it'll be easier to acknowledge that home/road splits aren't as clear cut as they appear to be. 

6.  Jason Hammel/Jeff Niemann. Both pitchers are out of options, meaning they'd have to pass through waivers before the Rays could send them to the minors.  Niemann will probably force his way into the picture, but the Rays probably do not have a place for Hammel.  A team like the Padres could give him a nice opportunity. 

7.  Marlins position players.  Four Marlins position players come to mind as trade candidates: Dan Uggla ($5.35MM), Jeremy Hermida ($2.25MM), Jorge Cantu ($3.5MM), and Robert Andino (out of options).  There's not much cooking with the three big names, though the Marlins do have possible replacements for Uggla and Cantu in-house. 

8.  Rangers catchers.  Will the Rangers deal one of their three young catchers?   They can probably make room for Max Ramirez, Taylor Teagarden, and Jarrod Saltalamacchia now that Gerald Laird is a Tiger. But perhaps the Red Sox or Marlins will reignite talks at some point this year.  The Rangers are looking to add even more pitching depth to the system.  Another possible excess for Texas is outfielders, if everyone stays healthy and Andruw Jones can play.  In that case, Marlon Byrd could be a trade chip, if he comes back healthy from offseason knee surgery. 

9.  Expendable Indians.  Ryan Garko, Andy Marte, and Josh Barfield don't seem to figure prominently in the Indians' future.  Garko and Barfield are trying to learn to play the outfield this spring, which could allow the Indians to keep one or both.  Marte, a former top prospect, is out of options. 

10.  Salary dumps.  Teams would love to move these players, but their salaries are prohibitive.  That won't stop the players from requesting trades, of course. Put on your GM hat and try to match up two of these guys for a bad contract swap: 

  • Gary Matthews Jr. - $33.5MM for 2009-11, full no-trade clause
  • Bobby Crosby - $5.25MM for 2009
  • Lyle Overbay - $14MM for 2009-10
  • Vernon Wells - $100MM for 2009-14, full no-trade clause
  • Eric Byrnes - $22MM for 2009-10, no-trade protection
  • Juan Pierre - $28.5MM for 2009-11, no-trade protection
  • Dave Roberts - $6.5MM for 2009
  • Noah Lowry - $4.5MM for 2009
  • Jarrod Washburn - $10.35MM for 2009, no-trade protection
  • Miguel Batista - $9MM for 2009
  • Luis Castillo - $18MM for 2009-11
  • Wily Mo Pena - $2MM for 2009
  • Jamie Walker - $4.5MM for 2009
  • Danys Baez - $5.5MM for 2009
  • Adam Eaton - $9MM for 2009
  • Geoff Jenkins - $8MM for 2009, limited no-trade clause
  • Freddy Sanchez - $6.7MM for 2009, unless 2010 option vests
  • Jack Wilson - $7.85MM for 2009
  • Hank Blalock - $6.2MM for 2009
  • Michael Young - $62MM for 2009-13, full no-trade clause
  • Julio Lugo - $18MM for 2009-10
  • Yorvit Torrealba - $4MM for 2009 
  • Mark Teahen - $3.575MM for 2009, non-guaranteed contract
  • Dontrelle Willis - $22MM for 2009-10
  • Gary Sheffield - $14MM for 2009, some deferred, can block trade to 10 teams
  • Nate Robertson - $17-18MM for 2009-10
  • Mike MacDougal - $3MM for 2009
  • Frank Catalanotto - $6MM for 2009
 

Other possible spring trade candidates: Reggie Willits, Miguel Montero, Chin-lung Hu, Jason Repko, Ramon Castro, Marcus Thames

Tim Dierkes follows the hot stove like no one else at MLB Trade Rumors and covers fantasy baseball at Roto Authority.com


47 Comments | Leave a comment

what about jake peavy.how could you forget him?

Tim Dierkes is the man, love me some MLBTR!!!

Juan Pierre and Julio Lugo. Both owed $9.5 - $9 Mil per year. Both bring a similar set of skills to the plate - JP 2008 OBP/SLG: .327/.328; JL 2008 OBP/SLG: .355/.330. Sox could potentially use some outfield depth (see JD Drew's back, hand, etc. and unpredictable Rocco Baldeli) and the Dodgers are definitely exploring utility infield options (see Rafael Furcal's back, Blake Dewitt's youth, etc.). Finally, to a lesser extent, the Dodgers have continuity with Lugo and the Sox have a history with speedy outfielders / pinch-running specialists (see Dave Roberts). I know that Pierre has a no trade clause in his contract, so there is a potenital stumbling block, but it sounds like something worth discussing nonetheless.

the dodgers dont need an infielder. we have 3 spots filled. and 3 young guys fighting for 2nd(dewitt, hu, dejesus jr) while we still could sign hudson to give them all an extra yr

the dodgers dont need an infielder. we have 3 spots filled. and 3 young guys fighting for 2nd(dewitt, hu, dejesus jr) while we still could sign hudson to give them all an extra yr

Don't really see Peavy as a legitimate spring trade candidate.

Carlos Silva, perhaps (under salary dump)? Yeah, his contract is prohibitively long but wouldn't the Mariners look hard to move him, maybe even send a mid-range prospect and cash to the Nats for Johnson?

It sure would be nice to see the Rockies trade for a GOOD pitcher....Jason Marquis, Greg Smith..c'mon you've got all these prospects and great young talent already on the field. If you could get just one Ace, the team would be so much better....And Aaron Cook and Jeff Francis are not Ace's on any other team.

28 players that teams would love to move as a salary dump, yet not one Yankee among them.

Damon and Matsui are probably the only guys who really fit the bill. Damon is needed and Matsui has a full no-trade clause.

the Blue Jays have a bunch of bullpen arms. one or more of them could/should be available.

How about Boof Bonser and Philip Humber.? Both are out of options and wouldn't pass through if the Twins tried.

yanks should trade swisher for Gary Matthews jr.or
for lyle overbay. keep nady he's a starter

"yanks should trade swisher for Gary Matthews jr."

I think the Angels would do that in a heartbeat, but would the Yankees?

Matthews has a pretty hefty contract.

Fora a salary dump, how about Barry Zito?

What about Pierre for Willis? The Dodgers need another SP. The money/years match-up pretty well. The Tigers could move Guillen to 3rd in place of Inge, or move Cabrera back to third and slot Guillen in at first. I'm sure the Dodgers would eat some salary too if need be.

This could work. I like it!

I would love to see a three team deal, with lugo going somewhere for young pitching(not top young pitching obviously), that young pitching going to texas, and Salty coming to boston

There would not be any trades in this market unless the team taking the salary hit gets the player for a low-level prospect. This is also shows how players are extremely overpaid. Ex: Lyle Overbay gets 14 million for have the production of Carlos Pena who gets 8 million this year. Plus Pena is a gold glover.

Overbay is more than an above average fielder.

I sure hope the Sox would be looking to dump Konerko's salary.

Tim,

You left something out.... The entire SF Giants Roster for ~insert~ 35+ year old run down overpaid stiff

Sincerely,

Brian S in San Fran

Cuddyer for Blalock? Although I'd imagine the Twins would want more, or some sort of injury insurance...

You forgot Austin Kearns. The Nats I'm sure would love to unload him and his $8 million contract.

I would put Josh Willingham on this list as well as Nick Johnson. They're both everyday players, and it seems to me the Nats would get better value for Willingham since he's a little younger and does not have nearly as bad of an injury history as Johnson. If/when Nick goes down, they could slide Dunn to 1B and still have Willie Harris and Austin Kearns as backup OFs. It's the outfield where there's a surplus, not 1B.

Mariners and Mets are the two teams off the top of my head that might be good fits for a Willingham trade, but there might be others.

I don't believe the Cards will trade any of those guys...unless they sign a free-agent second baseman like Orlando Hudson.

I think you'll see Schumaker win the second-base job. He's a decent leadoff man and LaRussa likes him. Otherwise, he wouldn't be toying with the notion of moving him to second base. That would put Duncan, Ankiel and Ludwick in the outfield.

LaRussa likes flexibility in his lineup and he'll play to matchups. That's why I don't see any of those guys being traded.

As for Colby Rasmus, there's no question he's got talent. But there are concerns about his attitude. LaRussa hesitated to call him up last year to maybe give him a little more humility. I wouldn't be surprised if Rasmus starts the season in the minors. But Tim, you're right. If Rasmus gets a chance and comes on strong, I think you might see one of those outfielders dealt.

But still, knowing the Cardinals and LaRussa's desire for flexibility, I don't think you'll see any trades happen.

The contracts for Noah Lowry and Jamie Walker work out pretty well for a trade, considering the cost is even -- Baltimore could use the extra young starter and San Francisco the extra experienced reliever.

Delmon Young will be moved by the Twins before the season starts, he has to be on this list.

I think the bullpen is pretty full in SF. There is some MLB talent there that might end up on the Giants' AA or AAA rosters to start the year. No way the Giants trade Lowry for a reliver. Now, Lowry has one more option left, and if he either does not make the starting rotation or shoulder sourness sets him back enough to miss the opening day roster, a trade for a Cantu or Uggla before the All-Star break might be an actual scenario.

Thrill me, but I would rather keep Lowry if healthy and performing and trade Sanchez for more, because I think his trade value right now is higher than his possible return down the road in the Giants organization. Maybe the Yanks would eat part of Nady or Swisher's salary in a mid-season swap.

The Dodgers should make a 3 year offer to Manny with a timetable attached.(70mil 3 years + team option 4th) Make the deal timeline March 15th. If no Manny, then they can stick with Pierre and the rabbits at the top of the lineup scenario. This will give teams a little time to mull over a trade for Pierre, and give Manny and the Dodgers a fair deal to accept or decline. The Dodgers could still win the NL West if everyone is healthy regardless if Manny is there or not.
-OR-
How about Pierre to the Yankees for Nady?

What about Eric Byrnes for Luis Castillo. Mets can finally dump Castillo and pick up Byrnes who has the heart they so desparately need. Notto mention he is a righty and a perfect #2 hitter in between Reyes and Wright.

I've heard John Grabow rumors, nothing to them?

As of now, the dodgers should
explore trade possibilities, as
a way to defer from Manny.
They're his only pursuer, and so
he'll have to come back to them
sometime in the future or sit the
season out

Why not Adam Eaton for Miguel Batista? Both teams aren't happy with each guy and a change of scenery might work for both. Salaries match up too. Or does this just make too much sense.

Would Nick Johnson for Noah Lowry work?

I like the idea of the Yankees going after Matthews. He could hold down CF until Austin Jackson is ready.

i woul love to see the red sox dump julio lugo for young catching.

the red sox probably would have to add some young pitching too

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