Five of the Most Impactful MLB Trade Deadline Targets

Five Impactful MLB Trade Deadline Targets

With the MLB trade deadline practically a week away, the floodgates are about to be opened. Now all eyes will be on the Washington Nationals for the next week to see if they will indeed trade franchise cornerstone Juan Soto after he declined a 15-year, $440 million extension.

Even though Soto will dominate the news for the next eight days, there are a handful of players who could be on the move that will supply a big boost to whatever team trades for them. Here are five players who could provide a big impact if they are traded prior to next Tuesday’s trade deadline:

Willson Contreras, C, Chicago Cubs

One of the last notable pieces to the Cubs’ 2016 World Series team seems to be on his way out of the “Windy City”. Willson Contreras started out the season hitting .283 in the first 67 games, piling up 69 hits, 13 home runs and 34 RBIs. However, he’s currently in a bit of a rut, batting .137 in his last 51 at-bats, but the sample size isn’t huge.

In a season where it has been more difficult than usual to get offensive production out of the catcher position, Contreras has been one of the few bright spots and could be the difference maker come playoff time.

Potential trade destinations: San Diego Padres, New York Mets, Houston Astros

Josh Bell, 1B, Washington Nationals

Josh Bell’s teammate will take over trade discussions for the next week, but Bell is having one of the best seasons of his career and will be one of the best bats on the market. He’s batting .305 and has 107 hits, 13 home runs and 51 RBIs in 351 at-bats. It’s been Bell’s most consistent season as a switch-hitter and he’ll be near the top of any team’s list that is looking to get production on either side of the plate.

Bell’s in the last year of his deal and the Nationals are headed for a mass rebuild after they trade Soto, so Bell will most likely live in a different area code after August 2.

Potential trade destinations: New York Mets, Houston Astros, Milwaukee Brewers

Luis Castillo, SP, Cincinnati Reds

Besides the Joc Pederson-Tommy Pham altercation in late May, it’s been a fairly quiet season for the Reds. The biggest bright spot for the team has been All-Star Luis Castillo, posting a 2.77 ERA on the season and a 1.00 ERA in his last four starts. In five of his last six starts, Castillo has gone at least six innings and has been the Reds’ most consistent arm on the mound this season.

Castillo still has one year left on his contract and since the Reds are in no position to make the postseason for the next few years, it makes the most sense to move on from Castillo.

Potential trade destinations: Los Angeles Dodgers, San Diego Padres, Toronto Blue Jays, Minnesota Twins

Andrew Benintendi, OF, Kansas City Royals

It’s been another underwhelming season for the Royals, but Andrew Benintendi hasn’t been affected by that and is currently having the best season of his career. The first-time All-Star is slashing .317/.387/.398 with 106 hits and 39 RBIs. Since Benintendi is unvaccinated, it could affect his trade market, especially with teams that are in position to play the Toronto Blue Jays in the regular season and potentially in the playoffs.

The Royals are in fourth place in the AL Central and with Benintendi in the last year of his deal and playing at an All-Star level, the two sides should go their separate ways.

Potential trade destinations: New York Yankees, Philadelphia Phillies, Miami Marlins

Frankie Montas, SP, Oakland Athletics

For the most part, Frankie Montas has been really good on the mound this season. He’s posted a 3.16 ERA this season and has only given up three or more runs in five of his 15 appearances where he’s pitched more than five innings. Shoulder inflammation has been bothering him lately, but it appears that those problems have subsided.

Montas will be one of the bigger names on the pitching market and he could provide a big boost to a starting rotation that needs a No. 2 or No. 3 starter.

Potential trade destinations: St. Louis Cardinals, Toronto Blue Jays, Minnesota Twins, New York Yankees

 


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