The MLB trade deadline is still six months away, but it’s never too early to start discussing who might be on the move, right?
So, let’s pull out the old crystal ball and come up with a trade candidate from each team. Even though most trades at the deadline involve minor leaguers on one side of the deal, for this exercise we’ll focus primarily on players on big league rosters who could be dealt based on teams’ biggest needs.
Let’s get right to it.
Most likely need: Bullpen
I don’t love what Madison Bumgarner (4.88 ERA, 4.85 FIP in 2022) and Zach Davies (4.09 ERA, 4.83 FIP) will likely offer in 2023, so if the Diamondbacks sneak into playoff contention, it will likely be because a couple of the rookie starters — Ryne Nelson, Drey Jameson and Brandon Pfaadt — have stepped up. That leaves the bullpen, which the Diamondbacks curiously did little in the offseason to upgrade after finishing 25th in ERA. Scott McGough, who had 69 saves in Japan the past two seasons, might emerge as the closer. Even after trading Daulton Varsho, the Diamondbacks still have outfield depth to deal from, although Smith could factor into the DH at-bats. Fletcher hit .312/.378/.486 in the minors.