Globe iconLogin iconRecap iconSearch iconTickets icon
news

MLB News

10 August trade candidates for contenders

MLB.com @feinsand

It has been nearly two weeks since the non-waiver Trade Deadline, but trade season is far from over.

Since the clock struck 4 p.m. ET on July 31, multiple contenders have bolstered their roster for a postseason run with post-Deadline deals. The Athletics have been the busiest, adding Mike Fiers, Fernando Rodney and Shawn Kelley, while the Phillies traded for Justin Bour and the Pirates acquired Adeiny Hechavarria.

It has been nearly two weeks since the non-waiver Trade Deadline, but trade season is far from over.

Since the clock struck 4 p.m. ET on July 31, multiple contenders have bolstered their roster for a postseason run with post-Deadline deals. The Athletics have been the busiest, adding Mike Fiers, Fernando Rodney and Shawn Kelley, while the Phillies traded for Justin Bour and the Pirates acquired Adeiny Hechavarria.

Some players cleared waivers, while others were dealt to the club that claimed them. Either way, more players figure to be on the move during the next two-plus weeks.

As a reminder, teams can place players on revocable trade waivers, which means the player can be claimed by any club. Waiver priority is determined by reverse standings in the player's league, following by reverse standings in the other league.

If a player is claimed, his original club can either work out a trade with the claiming club within 48 hours, allow the player -- and his entire contract -- to go to the club, or pull the player back off waivers. Once a player is pulled back off waivers, he can be placed on trade waivers a second time, though the request then becomes irrevocable.

Should a player pass through waivers unclaimed, he can then be traded to any club without any restrictions. Any players on the 40-man roster involved in the trade must also have cleared waivers.

Players acquired before the end of August are eligible to be on the postseason roster, so we could see action right up until 11:59 p.m. on Aug. 31, which was right about the time Justin Verlander was dealt to the Astros last year, changing the shape of the entire postseason.

With that in mind, here are 10 names to watch in the coming weeks.

Josh Donaldson, 3B, age 32
The former American League MVP Award winner hasn't played since May 28 thanks to a calf injury, but all indications are he is getting close to a return from the disabled list. Donaldson won't have much time to prove he's healthy before Aug. 31, but a contender in need of an impact bat might be willing to roll the dice on Donaldson, who is owed a little less than $7 million for the rest of the season.
Contract: Free agent this offseason

Matt Harvey, RHP, age 29
That Harvey is still pitching for the Reds in mid-August is one of the great upsets of the season. The right-hander was gaining momentum leading up to the Deadline before getting blown out by the Pirates on July 22, causing some contenders to wonder whether he'd be an upgrade for their rotation. August didn't start out much better, as the Nationals tagged Harvey with a loss, but he bounced back with seven innings of two-run ball against the D-backs on Saturday. He's owed about $1.7 million more this season, which is a reasonable gamble for a team seeking a starter.
Contract: Free agent this offseason

Video: ARI@CIN: Harvey strikes out 7 over 7 strong frames

Andrew McCutchen, OF, age 31
McCutchen's name was thrown around quite a bit before the Deadline, yet he remained with San Francisco as the Giants lingered in the postseason picture. They remain only five games off the National League West pace, but at 60-60, things don't look promising. Should San Francisco fall further, it could look to move McCutchen, who is owed just under $4.5 million for the rest of 2018.
Contract: Free agent this offseason

Video: PIT@SF: McCutchen leads off with homer to right

Derek Holland, LHP, age 31
Holland might not clear waivers, as he's owed about $500,000 over the final six-plus weeks of the season, but we've seen teams work out deals with claiming clubs. As with McCutchen, things would likely need to take a turn for the worse for San Francisco for players to be moved, but Holland has posted a 3.57 ERA in four starts since returning to the rotation on July 25, making him a good back-end depth candidate.
Contract: Free agent this offseason

Video: SF@SEA: Holland strikes out 4 over 6 strong frames

James Shields, RHP, age 36
A couple of spotty July outings may have prevented teams from taking a chance on Shields, but "Big Game James" has pitched well in his two August starts, posting a 2.77 ERA. His 4-14 record is deceiving: In Shields' 15 quality starts this season, Shields is 3-5 with seven no-decisions. The right-hander is owed a little more than $6 million this season.
Contract: $16 million club option for 2019 ($2 million buyout)

Video: CWS@SEA: Shields K's 5 over 7 strong vs. the Mariners

Ervin Santana, RHP, age 35
Santana has not pitched particularly well since making his season debut on July 25, posting a 6.53 ERA in his four starts. The Twins -- who have already unloaded Brian Dozier, Eduardo Escobar, Ryan Pressly, Lance Lynn, Zach Duke and Rodney in recent weeks -- might be willing to pay some of the $4 million owed to Santana for the rest of 2018. Remember: this is a guy who received AL Cy Young Award votes a year ago and started the American League Wild Card Game for Minnesota.
Contract: $14 million club option (no buyout)

Video: MIN@TOR: Santana fans Gurriel Jr. for first K of 2018

Curtis Granderson, OF, age 37
The veteran slugger is owed about $1.5 million more this season, and while Granderson is no longer the power threat who averaged nearly 30 homers a year from 2009-17, he can certainly help a team off the bench or as an injury fill-in. He also provides a solid clubhouse presence and has been to the postseason seven times in his career.
Contract: Free agent this offseason

Video: TOR@CWS: Granderson leads off the game with a homer

Marco Estrada, RHP, age 35
Estrada has had an up-and-down season, so while he won't be a difference-maker for a contending team, he can fill a back-end rotation spot or provide some insurance. He twirled seven innings of one-run, one-hit ball on Aug. 4 in Seattle, showing he has something left in the tank. Estrada is owed about $4 million for the rest of the season.
Contract: Free agent this offseason

Video: TOR@SEA: Estrada dominates over 7-plus one-hit frames

Sergio Romo, RHP, age 35
The Rays' closer (and occasional opener) has pitched exceptionally well since the beginning of June, posting a 1.71 ERA in 33 appearances. Romo has struck out a batter per inning during that stretch and would be a quality addition to any bullpen. He's owed about $750,000 for the rest of the season.
Contract: Free agent this offseason

Video: TB@TOR: Romo locks down his 99th career save

Jose Iglesias, SS, age 28
Iglesias has reportedly cleared waivers already, meaning he can be traded at any point. His overall numbers are nothing special, but he has crushed lefties to the tune of a .909 OPS this season, making him a solid candidate for a platoon or bench spot. Iglesias is owed about $1.9 million for the rest of 2018.
Contract: Free agent this offseason

Video: MIN@DET: Iglesias drives 2-run smash to left

Mark Feinsand, executive reporter for MLB.com, has covered the Yankees and MLB since 2001 for the New York Daily News and MLB.com.