This offseason seems to have a different feel regarding the trade market. That is, big names appear to be in play. Paul Goldschmidt and Corey Kluber. James Paxton and Billy Hamilton. This doesn't mean any of them will be traded.All it means is that lots of executives are -- to
This offseason seems to have a different feel regarding the trade market. That is, big names appear to be in play. Paul Goldschmidt and Corey Kluber. James Paxton and Billy Hamilton. This doesn't mean any of them will be traded.
All it means is that lots of executives are -- to use Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto's word -- reimagining their rosters. Whether the D-backs would really trade the cornerstone of their franchise -- well, friends, that's where the rubber meets the road.<p. hand="" on="" other="" the=""> If you're looking for Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto, you won't find him here. He's going to lead a later list: "Nine players who would shock the world by not being traded." For this one, let's consider nine who could be dealt:</p.>
1. Paul Goldschmidt, 1B, D-backs
Sure, the D-backs have to listen. Goldschmidt is 31 years old and a year away from free agency, and even though he has deep roots in the Phoenix community, business is business. In seven full seasons, he has averaged 37 doubles, 29 home runs and a .934 OPS. No player has ever represented a franchise better on the field and off than this one. Goldschmidt would be a massive get for any club.
Possible destinations: Cardinals, Yankees, White Sox
2. Madison Bumgarner, LHP, Giants
Another trade that once seemed inconceivable is one new Giants president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi must consider. Bumgarner is a year from free agency after averaging 19 starts the past two seasons. Let's say he would bring two Major League-ready prospects. The Yankees would offer that, right? The Braves might as well. Would that get San Francisco back to the postseason quicker than holding onto Bumgarner, signing him to an extension and seeing him go to the Hall of Fame as a Giant?
Possible destinations: Yankees, Braves
3. James Paxton, LHP, Mariners
This is the guy who'll test Dipoto's reimagining of his roster. Paxton is 30 years old and coming off a season in which he made 28 starts with a 1.098 WHIP and 11.7 strikeouts per nine innings. He's under team control for two more seasons and is expected to make about $8 million in 2019. If the goal is to manage the payroll and replenish the farm system, moving Paxton could do it.
Possible destinations: Braves, Yankees, White Sox, Astros
4. Corey Kluber, RHP, Indians
Maybe the time is right as the Indians look to add youth and get the payroll under control. First, there's the money part of it. Kluber has one more guaranteed season at $17 million plus two team options. His numbers did slip a bit in 2018, and he'll be 33 just after Opening Day. On the other hand, Kluber is still the very definition of an ace: 215 innings in 2018 with a 2.89 ERA and a 0.991 WHIP. He has averaged 218 innings and 32 starts the past five seasons.
Possible destinations: Yankees, Nationals, Braves
5. Scooter Gennett, 2B, Reds
The Reds seem certain to trade for pitching and seem willing to discuss both Gennett and Hamilton, who are both a year from free agency. Gennett will make around $9 million in his final arbitration year, and while second base isn't a position in demand, Gennett's .357 OBP should be.
Possible destinations: Dodgers, Red Sox, Brewers
6. William Myers, 3B/OF, Padres
For now, the Padres are still trying to make it work. Myers moved from first to the outfield and then third base after the signing of Eric Hosmer. If San Diego can acquire a third baseman, Myers would move back to the outfield. But the Padres are loaded there, too. Probably a better option is to trade him to a team that would put him back at first base. Given that Myers has four years at $16 million per season remaining on his contract, it will take some creativity. But he has averaged 29 home runs and 29 doubles in his past two full seasons, which should make him attractive.
Possible destinations: Yankees, Mets, Orioles
7. Nolan Arenado, 3B, Rockies
Arenado is the very definition of a franchise player, on the field and off. If you're looking for a case for the Rockies to trade him, there's just one. Arenado will make around $25 million in his final arbitration year before free agency, and if Colorado hopes to sign him to a long-term extension, it'll have to look at alternatives. Best bet is that the Rockies do not trade him and eventually get his name on the dotted line.
Possible destinations: Braves, Padres, Cardinals
8. Corey Dickerson, OF, Pirates
Dickerson's power numbers were down, but his overall value was up, in part because he won his first Gold Glove. He'll make around $7 million in arbitration, and if the Pirates are looking for value, this might be the best time to listen to offers.
Possible destinations: Giants, A's
9. Brad Boxberger, RHP, D-backs
The free-agent market is so flush with relievers that it might require patience to find a value trade for a 30-year-old who was removed from the closer role in September. But at a time when every team is attempting to add more bullpen depth, there's going to be a market for a fastball/changeup specialist who averaged 12 strikeouts per nine innings.
Possible destinations: Red Sox, Cubs, Braves
Richard Justice has been a reporter for MLB.com since 2011. Read his columns, listen to his podcast and follow him on Twitter at @RichardJustice.