MLB's non-waiver trade deadline is tomorrow, July 31st, and there appear to be at least a few major names that may be moved. Several, it seems, may be headed to the National League Central, so whether the Cincinnati Reds opt to make a move or not the wheelings and dealings of the next 24ish hours will impact them both in 2014 and in coming years.
A quick roundup of what's being floated out there:
- Boston Red Sox starter Jon Lester is set to be a free agent at the end of the 2014 season, and since he and the team have come nowhere close on extension negotiations (and since the Red Sox are 11 games under .500), it looks like he's going to be dealt somewhere soon. Last night, Boston went ahead and scratched him from today's start in anticipation of a deal, and according to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe, each of the St. Louis Cardinals, Pittsburgh Pirates, Los Angeles Dodgers, and Seattle Mariners have interest in the lefty. Some pundits - including former Reds GM Leather G. Pants - have also mentioned that the Milwaukee Brewers have interest in adding Lester for their run at the NL Central crown.
- As for the other major trade piece on the market, the David Price rumors seem to be all over the map. He's scheduled to start today for the surging Tampa Bay Rays, who can eke all the way back to .500 on the season with a win today. That would mean 12 wins in 13 games, a climb back to .500 from being once 18 games under, and a chance to be just 4 games back from the AL's second Wild Card spot. That would make it tough for Tampa to want to deal their best pitcher, and since Price is under team control through 2015 it may now make them hold on to their ace until this Winter. Either way, teams are still very interested in him, with both the Los Angeles Dodgers and St. Louis Cardinals the best equipped to send a package to South Florida, absorb Price's 2015 salary, and legitimately have a chance to extend the former Vanderbilt star.
- For the same reasons that Price may not be traded, Ben Zobrist rumors have nearly dried up, too. Dang.
- MLB.com's Joe Frisario reports the Florida Marlins want a top-end pitcher with more control than just 2014, but that they won't include super-awesome guy Christian Yelich in a deal to get one. Double Dang.
- Bowtie McFunnypants notes that the Texas Rangers are willing to include cash in any Alex Rios trade. The Reds were linked to Rios a few days ago, but either that ship has sailed or every source and reporter on the planet lost Walt Jocketty's phone number.
- Josh Willingham may head to the Mariners (yawn), the Cleveland Indians may move Justin Masterson, and the New York Yankees are interested in any mediocre pitcher they can get their hands on in exchange for any of the mediocre prospects in their pretty bad system. Alfredo Simon for Tyler Austin, anyone?
- As for our good ol' Cincinnati Reds, well, nothing. Nothing serious, I should add, since it appears the biggest news leaking from the Reds' front office is absolutely nothing, so John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer opted to make up a rumor of his own:
Unfortunately, the best source of Reds insider knowledge hasn't done anything for 11 days. With that kind of evidence in hand, maybe that guy really is Walt Jocketty.