As we continue to close in on July and trade season, we took a look yesterday at what some of the potential sellers in the American League could offer the Red Sox over the next five weeks or so ahead of the trade deadline. Today, we’re going to move on to the National League. There’s no major difference between AL and NL trade partners, though all things considered it can be a little easier to get deals done with teams from the other league. There’s less of a worry about helping out those teams than there is about one in your own league. That being said, the best value is going to win out regardless of league 99 percent of the time. Anyway, here’s a look at some of the potential sellers in the National League.
Targets: J.T. Realmuto, Derek Dietrich, Starlin Castro, Kyle Barraclough, Brad Ziegler
The Marlins are among the most obvious rebuilding teams in the league, and they have a couple of intriguing trade chips. Realmuto is many fans’ favorite potential trade target, but the reality is that it’s far-fetched, to put it lightly. He’s going to command a large package of prospects that, frankly, the Red Sox likely can’t afford. Deitrich and Castro are both players who can play second base. The former will cost a lot more as he is a better player and has more versatility while also being in arbitration. Castro hits from the right side, which the Red Sox can use, but is worse and is under contract next year for an $11 million price tag Boston likely wouldn’t want to be on the hook for. Barraclough and Ziegler would be bullpen help. The former has big upside and has multiple years of control. The latter is a former Red Sox trade acquisition who is towards the end of his career and has struggled up until very recently.
Targets: Asdrubal Cabrera, Todd Frazier, Jose Bautista, Jeurys Familia, Anthony Swarzak
Cabrera could be an ideal trade target for the Red Sox as an infielder who can play both second and third base. His defense isn’t great, but it’s passable and his bat more than makes up for it. I’m not actually sure if Frazier will be available, but he’s a great clubhouse guy on a cheap contract with one more year of control. He also kills lefties. I don’t think it’s likely, but it’s a name to keep in mind. Bautista could likely be had for very cheap and he’s hitting well since joining the Mets. He’d be a right-handed thumper off the bench for next to nothing. Familia has the talent to be an elite reliever for a rental price, though there’s inconsistency. He also has a domestic abuse suspension on his record. Swarzak is a lower ceiling relief acquisition, but also a cheaper one.
Targets: Adam Duvall, Raisel Iglesias, Jared Hughes, David Hernandez
The Reds are a bad team, but a lot of the players they could potentially sell don’t match well with the Red Sox. Duvall is an interesting right-handed bench bat who could be had for relatively cheap. The rest of the names are bullpen help. Iglesias is one of my favorite relievers in the game, but I’d be surprised if the Red Sox could afford him in a trade. Hughes is not a big name nor is he a sexy acquisition, but he’s had a great year and has been very good for five years in a row now. He likely wouldn’t cost much in a deal. Hernandez has always been one of the more underrated relievers in the game in my mind and would be another potential cheap acquistion.
Targets: Josh Harrison, David Freese
The Pirates have been better than expected this year, but it’s still unlikely they buy at the deadline. They don’t have a lot of appealing pieces for the Red Sox, though. Harrison has team options for the next two years after this, though he hasn’t been good enough that you’d definitely take them. He is, however, a right-handed bat who can play both third and second base. Freese is only a third baseman, but he’d be a right-handed bench bat for the Red Sox who has hit lefties well over his career. (For what it’s worth, he’s been awful against lefties this season.) I don’t really see a trade materializing between these two teams, if we’re being honest.
Targets: Brad Hand, Kirby Yates, Craig Stammen
The Padres and Red Sox obviously have an...interesting trade history. San Diego is in a weird spot and I’m not sure how far away they think they are. Hand is their top trade chip, but he’s going to cost a ton and the Red Sox don’t have the type of prospect to lead a package for an elite reliever who doesn’t need to be dealt this summer. Yates and Stammen are more likely acquisitions, and Yates in particular could be an interesting addition to the back of the bullpen.
Targets: DJ LeMahieu, Adam Ottavino
The Rockies aren’t expected to be full-blown sellers and they may not sell at all as they aren’t all that far out of the playoff race. However, they have a couple of really intriguing rentals if they do fall far enough out of the race. If Pedroia is out for the rest of the year, or at least most of it, LeMahieu is the best rental second baseman out there as a good defensive player who can provide value at the plate and on the bases. Ottavino, meanwhile, is an elite reliever who would instantly transform the Red Sox bullpen from good to great. The latter is my dream acquisition this summer, and if they could add the former in the right scenario that would make it even better.