As the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline approaches, we'll keep you up to date with the latest news, buzz, rumors and more.
Nationals could 'revisit' Realmuto trade discussions
July 15: The Nationals were believed to have moved on from Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto due to Miami's lofty asking price, but league sources say that Washington could "revisit" its pursuit of the backstop, according to MLB Network insider Jon Heyman in an article for Fancred Sports.
Some think the Nats might consider including top prospect Victor Robles (No. 5 overall, per MLB Pipeline) in a package for Realmuto, who will start at catcher for the National League in Tuesday's All-Star Game presented by Mastercard.
Per Heyman, the Marlins have long sought Robles and/or infielder Carter Kieboom (Washington's No. 2 prospect, No. 62 overall) from the Nationals, who discussed Realmuto with Miami in the offseason and reached out again several weeks ago but have been unwilling to include the aforementioned prospects to this point.
The Nationals have also been connected to Rays catcher Wilson Ramos, who played in Washington from 2010-16, but Ramos suffered a left hamstring injury Saturday and will miss the All-Star Game.
• Listen: Mark Feinsand joins the Morning Lineup Podcast to discuss latest rumors
Cardinals could sell if struggles continue after All-Star break
July 15: The Cardinals picked up a win in their final game before the All-Star break after dismissing manager Mike Matheny on Saturday, but if their recent struggles continue to begin the second half, the expectation is that St. Louis will "seriously consider selling," according to Joel Sherman of the New York Post.
And if that happens, the Cardinals could shake up the starting pitcher market in a big way by making right-hander Carlos Martinez available.
As Sherman notes, St. Louis' strength is young arms, so the club could use Martinez to address other problems on the roster. Per Sherman, outside executives believe the Cardinals can get peak value for Martinez in a market lacking an ace. The 26-year-old is in the second year of a five-year, $51 million contract with team options for 2022 ($17 million) and 2023 ($18 million).
The Cardinals will enter the All-Star break with a 48-46 record, 7 1/2 games behind the first-place Cubs in the National League Central (five games behind the second-placed Brewers) and four games out in the NL Wild Card race. They'll open the second half with eight games on the road, including five at Wrigley Field.
Could Reds move Gennett?
July 15: Scooter Gennett has made it known that he wants to remain with the Reds -- and based on his conversations with the front office, shared in an MLB.com exclusive, he expects to remain with the club past the Deadline -- but the two sides haven't spoken much about a contract extension, according to MLB Network insider Ken Rosenthal for FOX Sports.
Gennett -- a first-time All-Star this season -- has emerged as a surprising force in Cincinnati's lineup after being claimed off waivers from the Brewers in March 2017, batting .309/.356/.529 with 43 homers and 159 RBIs in 232 games in a Reds uniform.
Gennett is in the midst of a career year, and the Reds could look to sell high on the 28-year-old, who is under team control for one more season. Entering Sunday, the left-handed slugger led the National League at his position in batting average and OPS while ranking second in RBIs and fourth in runs and homers.
Cincinnati has infielder Nick Senzel -- the No. 4 prospect in baseball per MLB Pipeline -- waiting in the wings, giving the team some incentive to move Gennett, especially if it meant upgrading a pitching staff that currently ranks 13th in the NL with a 4.67 ERA. However, Senzel would be unable to provide immediate help, considering he underwent season-ending surgery in late June to repair a torn tendon in his right index finger.
Video: Scooter Gennett continues to amaze in 2018
Red Sox, Braves interested in Moose
July 15: The trade market for impending free agent Mike Moustakas is developing, with the Red Sox and Braves among the teams interested in acquiring him before the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline, according to ESPN's Jerry Crasnick via Twitter.
However, MLB.com's Mark Feinsand notes in a tweet that the Royals may need to wait to trade Moustakas until after Orioles shortstop Manny Machado is dealt.
Kansas City could see the list of Moustakas suitors grow once Machado is moved, as some of the clubs that are pursuing the All-Star shortstop may turn their attention to the Royals third baseman if they miss out on Machado.
It's unclear what Boston's interest in Moustakas means for Rafael Devers, who is on the disabled list with left shoulder inflammation. Devers, 21, has recorded an underwhelming .715 OPS this season compared to Moustakas' .772 mark.
The Braves have received better-than-expected production from Johan Camargo at the hot corner, though the 24-year-old has posted a .385 OPS with 10 strikeouts in his past nine games.
The Yankees have also been linked to Moustakas, though they were reportedly interested in him to play first base rather than third. Greg Bird has solidified first base for New York lately by producing five homers, 15 RBIs and a .922 OPS over his past 14 games.
Video: Slugger Moustakas delivering at the plate, in field
Dodgers, Phillies, Brewers leading race for Machado as Orioles narrow focus
July 15: Although the leaderboard in the race for Manny Machado remains fluid with less than three weeks to go before the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline, trade talks for the Orioles shortstop could be in the home stretch.
According to a tweet from Buster Olney, the O's have narrowed their focus, with a source saying Baltimore is at the "10-yard line" in trade discussions.
The Dodgers and Phillies were leading the pack as of Saturday night, according to MLB.com's Jon Paul Morosi. The Brewers also remain involved, per multiple reports, with Eduardo A. Encina of the Baltimore Sun writing that "the gap between those teams is currently too close to call." Olney notes that the Dodgers, Phillies and Brewers are waiting for the "goal line call."
MLB Network insider Jon Heyman tweeted Sunday that the Yankees and Indians are "in but perhaps behind," and that the Brewers have made a "good offer."
George A. King III of the New York Post initially reported Sunday that the Yankees are unwilling to move any of their top 10 prospects for Machado, and youngsters who have graduated off their prospect list such as Andujar, Gleyber Torres, Clint Frazier and Tyler Wade are also off the table. However, another source dispelled the notion that New York isn't offering any of its top 10 prospects, King later wrote.
The Phillies had previously viewed the O's asking price as too high, but MLB.com's Todd Zolecki wrote Saturday that they were ramping up their push for Machado after seizing first place in the National League East within the past week. More >
Video: O'Dowd, Nelson discuss the Manny Machado sweepstakes
Olney: NL teams at 'forefront' of Familia trade talks
July 15: With all the talk surrounding Mets starters Jacob deGrom, Noah Syndergaard and Zack Wheeler, closer Jeurys Familia has flown under the radar. But Familia remains one of the best relievers available, and ESPN's Buster Olney reports via Twitter that a number of National League teams "appear to be at the forefront" of trade discussions for the impending free agent.
Olney mentions the Phillies and Giants as two of the clubs that are interested, though he notes Philadelphia may wait until its talks with the Orioles regarding Manny Machado and Zach Britton are resolved before honing in on Familia. The Braves, Cubs and Dodgers are also among the NL contenders that could use help in the bullpen. As for clubs in the AL, Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports the Red Soxhave inquired about Familia.
Familia is peaking at the right time, tossing seven straight scoreless appearances with one hit allowed to open July after posting a 6.94 ERA with a 2.31 WHIP from May 23 through the end of June.
Britton's market picking up; Cubs among interested clubs
July 15: While the Cubs ended the first half with the National League's best record (55-38) and the fourth-best bullpen ERA (3.10) in the Majors, they are among the eight teams talking to the Orioles about closer Zach Britton, an industry source told Bruce Levine of Chicago radio station 670 The Score.
The Cubs also have Padres closer Brad Hand on their wish list, per Levine, though Hand will cost far more than Britton, who is set to become a free agent at the end of this season. Hand, meanwhile, is signed through 2020 with a $10 million team option for 2021.
There has been rejuvenated interest of late in Britton, who has made 15 appearances for the Orioles this season after returning from offseason surgery to repair a ruptured right Achilles. Though he got off to a rough start, Britton has not given up a run over his past seven outings (seven innings) while showing a dramatic increase in velocity.
The Orioles would prefer to trade Britton and Manny Machado in separate deals, according to MLB Network insider Ken Rosenthal for FOX Sports. Rosenthal reports Baltimore feels the return for the pair would be greater if they weren't packaged together -- for example, the Astros have been interested in Britton, but are not in the market for a shortstop/third baseman.
The Phillies have also been linked to Britton, and Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports the Red Sox "are being tied" to the southpaw as well.
Twins open to trading Odorizzi, Gibson
July 15: The Twins' rotation could look strikingly different after the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline, as the club is reportedly willing to trade a number of its veteran starters.
According to Joel Sherman of the New York Post, Minnesota is said to be open to dealing Kyle Gibson and Jake Odorizzi, who are both controllable through 2019.
Gibson, 30, is having a career year, as his 3.42 ERA, 1.23 WHIP and 8.9 K/9 rate would all be personal bests. Odorizzi, 28, owns an unimpressive 4.54 ERA and a 1.45 WHIP, but he's striking out more than a batter per inning (9.4 K/9) and has been a solid mid-rotation option over the past five seasons (3.91 ERA, 1.25 WHIP).
Lance Lynn is another obvious trade candidate, as he can become a free agent at the end of this season. After struggling in his first eight starts (7.47 ERA), Lynn has posted a 3.67 ERA over his past 10 outings.
And though Ervin Santana has yet to pitch in the Majors in 2018 after undergoing finger surgery in February, he's currently on a rehab assignment and was an All-Star last year. With a $14 million team option and a $1 million buyout for '19, Santana could be a reasonable trade target for a rotation-needy club if he proves to be healthy before July 31.
Padres getting calls on Ross, Yates, Hand
July 15: Brad Hand isn't the only Padres pitcher to be highly coveted by contending clubs. Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports San Diego has been "getting a lot of hits" on starter Tyson Ross and several relievers, including Hand and Kirby Yates. Sherman notes the Yankees are among the teams that have checked in with the Padres.
Ross, who can become a free agent at the end of this season, has posted a 4.32 ERA in 2018, though he had a much more impressive 3.32 mark through the end of June before allowing 15 runs over his first two starts of July.
Hand, 28, is among the best relievers in baseball, as he has posted a 2.66 ERA with a 1.04 WHIP and an 11.8 K/9 rate since the outset of 2016. In exchange for the two-time All-Star, who is signed through 2020 with a $10 million team option for 2021, the Padres are believed to be asking for a package similar to those the Yankees got for Aroldis Chapman and Andrew Miller in two separate deals during 2016.
The Cubs also reportedly have Hand on their wish list, according to Bruce Levine of Chicago radio station 670 The Score.
Yates, meanwhile, has quietly recorded a 1.47 ERA with a 0.90 WHIP and an 11.5 K/9 rate this season. The 31-year-old is controllable through 2020.
Will Mariners trade for rotation help?
July 15: Though the Mariners haven't made the postseason since 2001, rank 15th in the Majors in rotation ERA (4.09) and currently have both James Paxton and Felix Hernandez on the disabled list, Ryan Divish of the Seattle Times writes that the Mariners' rotation isn't "a lock to be upgraded at the Trade Deadline."
Per Divish, Erasmo Ramirez's impending return from a strained teres major muscle in his right shoulder makes it unlikely Seattle will trade for a "replacement-level starting pitcher," as Ramirez can fill that role.
General manager Jerry Dipoto may look to swing a deal if it considerably improves the rotation, but as Divish points out, Seattle might not have the prospects to acquire a front-of-the-rotation starter such as the Rays' Chris Archer.
The Mariners have been linked to the Rangers' Cole Hamels, but according to Divish, sources say Seattle's interest in the left-hander was "greatly overplayed."
Divish also notes that some people in the Mariners ownership group and upper-level management aren't in favor of trading for rental players, which could potentially rule out free-agent-to-be J.A. Happ, another pitcher who has been connected to Seattle.
D-backs seeking starting pitcher
July 15: The D-backs are in the market for a starting pitcher, according to reporter Robert Murray, recently of FanRag sports. Arizona's starting rotation, which entered Sunday ranked ninth in the National League with a 4.09 ERA, currently consists of Zack Greinke, Robbie Ray, Patrick Corbin and Zack Godley. The No. 5 slot is open for now, with Clay Buchholz (strained left oblique) and Shelby Miller (right elbow inflammation) on the disabled list.
Greinke and Corbin have provided the D-backs with an excellent one-two punch -- entering Sunday with a combined 3.14 ERA in 39 starts -- but both Godley (4.61 ERA) and Ray (5.03 ERA) have struggled in 2018 after strong '17 campaigns.
There are several viable starters likely to be available leading up to the Deadline, including the Rangers' Cole Hamels and the Blue Jays' J.A. Happ, or Arizona could choose to make a bigger splash by acquiring an ace like the Mets' Jacob deGrom or Noah Syndergaard.
All eyes on Syndergaard in his return
July 14: Jacob deGrom and Noah Syndergaard would be the prizes of the starting pitching market if the Mets decided to trade either of their two aces. So it's no surprise that Syndergaard was being heavily scouted on his return from the disabled list Friday at Citi Field.
On hand to watch the flamethrowing right-hander were the Yankees, Mariners and Cubs, among others, according to the New York Post's Ken Davidoff. All three are contending teams that could benefit greatly from adding a frontline starter to their rotation. One scout told Davidoff that Syndergaard flashed "a pretty good power selection" on Friday night.
Syndergaard was solid, if a little rusty, in his first start since late May after missing nearly two months with a strained ligament in his right index finger. He held the Nationals to a run in five innings, and his fastball reached as high as 99.7 mph. Thor now has a 2.97 ERA and 79 strikeouts in 69 2/3 innings this season.
If teams are convinced Syndergaard can stay healthy -- he's missed significant time in each of the last two years -- his dominant stuff would make him very highly sought-after as the Deadline nears. Syndergaard is also only 25 and controllable through 2021. But those same factors might convince the Mets to hold onto Syndergaard, and any deal to land him would likely have to blow the Mets away.
In fact, some contending teams continue to think the Mets will not move their top two arms -- especially deGrom, but maybe not Syndergaard, either. In a report from the New York Post's Joel Sherman on Saturday, one executive said that the Mets "are entering this trade market with the most valuable pieces and are opting to sit on the sideline," while another said that "the way they are saying they will only move their top starters [deGrom and Syndergaard] for a truckload is just another way of saying they are not trading them."
Could Yankees, Tigers come together on Fulmer?
July 14: The Yankees are in the market for a starting pitcher, and the Tigers have one of the better options available in Michael Fulmer. But will the two clubs be able to come together to strike a deal?
According to a report from The Athletic's Marc Carig on Friday, the Tigers' asking price for Fulmer has been high -- the right-hander is just 25 and controllable through 2022 -- and the Yankees haven't done anything more than inquire about his availability.
But they have at least been keeping their eye on Fulmer, and the Tigers have been doing the same with the Yankees. Detroit had a scout at Progressive Field for Thursday night's Yankees-Indians game, as the New York Post's George A. King III reported.
One player from the Yankees that might interest Detroit is highly touted young outfielder Clint Frazier. According to The Athletic's Katie Strang, "It is believed that the Tigers are looking for an impact bat to be a centerpiece of any deal for Fulmer." The 23-year-old Frazier has been floated as a potential trade candidate because of the Yankees' slew of outfielders; he's been squeezed out of playing time by Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton, Brett Gardner and Aaron Hicks.
Video: Jon Morosi talks about Trade Deadline possibilities
Iglesias wants to stay in Cincinnati
July 14: Reds closer Raisel Iglesias could be one of the most in-demand relievers at the Trade Deadline. The 28-year-old right-hander has a 2.41 ERA, 19 saves and 45 strikeouts in 41 innings this season. He's on a team-friendly seven-year, $27 million contract that runs through 2020. Plus, he's controllable for an additional season after that, through 2021.
But if it were up to him, Iglesias wouldn't be going anywhere. Addressing trade rumors on Saturday, he said he wants to stay in Cincinnati.
"I'm not paying attention at all to that," Iglesias said via translator Julio Morillo. "I want to stay here. I don't want to go anywhere else, but I don't control that. If I could control it, I would stay here and play here for all of my career."
Multiple contending teams could be looking for bullpen help at the Deadline -- like the Indians, whose bullpen has struggled this year especially as Andrew Miller has missed extended time due to injury, or the Astros, who just sent Ken Giles to Triple-A this week. According to MLB.com's Mark Sheldon, the Astros' front office is believed to think "very highly" of Iglesias. More >
Wheeler's trade stock continues to rise
July 14: While the Mets' asking price for Jacob deGrom and Noah Syndergaard pushes interested teams away, Zack Wheeler is becoming a more attractive alternative with each start.
Although his outing vs. the Nationals on Saturday ended on a sour note as he allowed three runs in the eighth, Wheeler shut down Washington over the first seven frames and set a season high with 7 2/3 innings pitched to earn his first win since April.
Since the outset of June, Wheeler has recorded a 3.61 ERA in 57 1/3 innings spanning nine starts. He has bumped his average four-seam fastball velocity over 96 mph in that stretch after averaging 94.8 mph with the pitch in his first nine games this season.
But as his stock continues to rise, Wheeler may also be decreasing the Mets' interest in trading him. According to a tweet from Mike Puma of the New York Post, the Mets are "on the fence" about whether they will move the right-hander, who is under control through 2019.
Angels, Yanks might be Deadline partners
July 14: The Yankees are casting a wide net in their search for starting pitching upgrades. Sources told MLB.com's Jon Paul Morosi on Saturday that the Yankees have recently been scouting Angels games, in case the Halos decide to become sellers before the Deadline.
New York is eyeing two Angels starters in particular: left-handers Tyler Skaggs and Andrew Heaney.
The Yankees and Angels could be a good match as trade partners. Angels general manager Billy Eppler was the Yankees' assistant GM prior to taking the Angels job, where he worked with Yankees GM Brian Cashman in the New York front office.
Skaggs and Heaney (Skaggs especially) have both had solid seasons. The 27-year-old Skaggs, who is controllable through 2020, has a 2.57 ERA in 17 starts, with 105 strikeouts in 98 innings. Heaney, also 27, is controllable through 2021. He has a 3.84 ERA in 16 starts, with 96 strikeouts in 96 innings.
As Morosi notes, the Angels will likely require multiple MLB-ready players to trade either pitcher, as the club has no interest in starting a rebuild with Mike Trout signed for only two more seasons after this one. More >
What are Phillies' options beyond Machado?
July 14: If the Phillies aren't able to land Manny Machado, what might they do? According to MLB Network insider Ken Rosenthal for FOX Sports, Philadelphia will still look to upgrade the left side of its infield, and could make a bid for Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre, who could share the role with current third baseman Maikel Franco. The left side would then have Franco/Beltre at third, and rookies Scott Kingery and J.P. Crawford (currently on the disabled list) at shortstop.
Though he went 0-for-3 with a walk in Saturday's 2-0 loss to the Marlins, Franco has been hitting well of late following a slow start to the season. Entering play Saturday, he was slashing .359/.419/.615 in July. Kingery went 2-for-4 on Saturday, and is hitting .236/.282/.339 with four homers and eight steals this season. Crawford, sidelined with a broken left hand from being hit by a pitch, is hitting .194/.312/.333 with two home runs in 34 games this season.
Will Braves trade for relief help with Vizcaino back on DL?
July 14: Braves closer Arodys Vizcaino was placed on the 10-day disabled list due to right shoulder inflammation again Saturday, less than two weeks after returning from his previous DL stint.
MLB.com's Jon Paul Morosi reported earlier this month that Atlanta was targeting controllable relievers in a trade, and Vizcaino's latest setback may only hasten the club's pursuit of a bullpen arm.
The Braves' bullpen entered Saturday with a 4.29 ERA, ranking 19th in the Majors, and many of their key relievers are inexperienced. Meanwhile, Vizcaino has an extensive injury history, undergoing Tommy John surgery in 2012 and dealing with right shoulder inflammation in '16 and '18.