Trade Week 2020



Photo by Yahoo Sports


MLB Trade Week and Hottest Teams and Hitters

 

By David A. Avila

Blockbuster trades. You gotta love them.

With only four weeks remaining the San Diego Padres took a big plunge into the trade market. Boy, did they.

San Diego, Miami Marlins, the Cleveland Indians and Toronto Blue Jays all dipped their toes into the trade pool and on the last day of the trade deadline on Monday 1 p.m. PT, emerged with viable trades.

Each team expects to make the expanded playoff scenario in this Covid-19 impacted season.

A total of nine players were added to the Padre roster including Cleveland Indian ace Mike Clevinger. In exchange the Indians received Josh Naylor, Cal Quantrill, Austin Hedges, Gabriel Arias, Joey Cantillo and Owen Miller. The Padres also received Greg Allen and a player to be named later.

Other trades by the Padres included the pickup of catcher Jason Castro from the Los Angeles Angels and catcher Austin Nola from Seattle Mariners. They also picked up relief ace Trevor Rosenthal from the Kansas City Royals for Padre’s prospect Edward Olivares. Another key pickup was Mitch Moreland from Boston.

All total the Padres unloaded nine prospects from their talented minor league system.

Cleveland Indians are also battling for a spot in the playoffs and though Clevinger is a top pitcher in the American League, they are deep enough to withstand unloading him.

One reason is Clevinger was suspended for breaking protocol and risking the team’s health by not revealing it. Now he’s the Padres top pitcher.

The Toronto franchise picked up pitchers Taijuan Walker, Robbie Ray, and Ross Stripling from various teams. They also added Jonathan Villar and Daniel Vogelbach in their hunt for a spot in the post-season.

Injuries had depleted the young Toronto team who are in need of bolstering their starting pitching staff.

One surprise participant in this year’s trading block is Miami.

The Marlins acquired Starling Marten from Arizona in exchange for pitchers Caleb Smith and Humberto Mejia. They also get a player to be named later for Marten who was leading the Arizona Diamondbacks in hitting.

Oakland Athletics also jumped in the pool as they attempt to win their first division title since 2013. The A’s grabbed pitcher Mike Minor from Texas for two players to be named later. They also picked up Angels infielder Tommy La Stella for Franklin Barretto.


Hot Teams

In this final month of baseball, the three hottest teams in the Major Leagues are the Chicago White Sox, Tampa Bay Rays and the Los Angeles Dodgers. Not coincidentally all three teams lead their individual divisions.

Behind a torrid hitting team the White Sox have won eight of their last 10 games including head to head battles with Minnesota Twins. The White Sox have perhaps this year’s Rookie of the Year candidate in Luis Robert. The power hitting center fielder is tied with Mike Trout in OPS at .960. and has 10 homers and 30 RBIs. The southside Chicago team has a potent hitting attack and some solid pitching. They currently lead the AL Central by a game.

Tampa Bay recently riddled the New York Yankee pitching staff and stifled their presumably unstoppable offense with their pitching. The Rays have won 9 of 10 games against New York and now lead the AL East by four and a half games. Despite a roster whose entire salary rates in the low 10 percent of the Major Leagues, the Tampa Bay organization continues to surprise the rest of baseball with its overall baseball play. Whether its pitching or offense the Rays get it done. Defense has always been a strongpoint too.

Baseball’s best team remains the Los Angeles Dodgers who have 26 wins and are 16 games over .500. They lead the pesky San Diego Padres by four and a half games and decided to keep most of their roster intake. The only player parting is starting pitcher Ross Stripling who was sent to Toronto for a player to be named later. Stripling was inserted into the starting rotation when David Price opted out for this baseball season due to the coronavirus pandemic. Lately, the offense has woken as Cody Bellinger, Max Muncy and Joc Pederson have escaped their early season batting slumps. Collectively they have contributed to a Major League record of 57 homers in the month of August.

        

Hot Players

None are hotter than Manny Machado the san Diego third baseman who was hitting at a .500 clip the past week.

Machado was named NL Player of the Week and kept the Padres from being drowned by the red hot Dodgers who lead them by more than four games. The former Dodger kept the hitting attack rolling though others on the team recently hit a slump.

Here’s a list of the top hitters in terms of power using OPS:

NL

1.Juan Soto of Nationals 1.219 OPS

2. Jesse Winker of Reds 1.117 OPS

3. Ian Happ of Cubs 1.064 OPS

4. Trea Turner of Nationals 1.057 OPS

5. Fernando Tatis of Padres 1.055 OPS

AL

  1. Nelson Cruz of Twins 1.101 OPS
  2. Luke Voit of Yankees 1.068 OPS
  3. Teo Hernandez of Blue Jays .993 OPS
  4. Tim Anderson of White Sox .985 OPS
  5. Jose Abreu of White Sox .982 OPS

 

 

 

 

 

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