Jays' price is 'extremely high' for Happ, Solarte

Are the Angels buyers or sellers? Will the Cards trade Ozuna?

July 24th, 2018

The non-waiver Trade Deadline is one week away. As teams around the Major Leagues continue to discuss various potential moves, here's some chatter about buyers and sellers and who might be on the move:
• The Blue Jays are shopping players including J.A. Happ, and , but Toronto's asking price for its players "is extremely high," according to one executive.
Happ seems to be the most likely to be traded, though Solarte -- who has a $5.5 million club option for 2019 and a $8 million club option for '20 -- could be an attractive piece for many contenders based on his versatility.
The most puzzling situation for the Blue Jays involves Josh Donaldson, the former American League MVP Award winner who has played only 36 games this season because of injuries. Donaldson has been out since May 28 and might not be back before the July 31 Deadline.
Donaldson is still owed about $11 million for the rest of the season, so there's a good chance he'll pass through waivers in August, making him a candidate for a trade next month. Given that he's set to become a free agent after the season, Toronto is hoping to deal him and bring back a prospect or two before he signs elsewhere this offseason.
• The Angels are 50-51, sitting in fourth place in the AL West, yet they appear "to be stuck in the middle," according to an executive.
"Their system is lean, so they don't have much to offer for Major League assets," the executive said. "But there's pressure there to be a contender with [Mike] Trout under contract for only two more seasons.
"[Angels general manager Billy] Eppler has improved the system with guys like Jo Adell and Kevin Maitan, but they're still building. They could benefit from being a seller, but they're almost in win-now mode for the next two seasons."
• The White Sox are deep into their rebuild, having traded Chris Sale, and in 2016 and '17. But Chicago remains a seller this summer, with and among the chief trade options.
"They're still sellers," one executive said. "They have a good system there, but it still has room to improve even more."
• Would the Cardinals consider trading ? According to a source, the outfielder is not the most popular player in St. Louis' clubhouse. With one more year of arbitration eligibility left before becoming a free agent, Ozuna -- who is having a subpar season in his first year with the Cards -- could benefit from a change of scenery and bring back a prospect or two for St. Louis.
• Miami "seems to be in a holding position," according to an executive who has spoken with the Marlins' front office. Other than , the Marlins "don't seem to be in a rush" to move any of their controllable players, including J.T. Realmuto, or .
• The Pirates were open to moving players including Corey Dickerson, Felipe Vazquez, Josh Harrison and , but their 10-game winning streak has them on hold with the Deadline a week away. Pittsburgh is only four games out of a National League Wild Card spot and seven games behind the first-place Cubs in the NL Central.
"They'll need every minute before the Deadline to decide what they're doing," one GM said.
's UCL injury will have the Brewers scouring the starting pitching market during the final week leading up to the Deadline, though Milwaukee will consider internal options including and .
"They want an established front-line kind of guy," a source said.
One name to watch: Matt Harvey. The former Mets ace isn't a front-line pitcher anymore, but he has pitched relatively well since being traded to the Reds. Still, it seems some teams still have concerns about his makeup, which could lead to some hesitation for contending teams.
• The Twins are 8 1/2 games behind the Indians in the AL Central, but Minnesota is firmly in sell mode. The Twins are shopping most of their expiring contracts, including , , , and .