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MLB's trade deadline tracker: Updates, analysis on all the moves

The LA Times logo The LA Times 7/28/2021 Ethan Sears
a baseball player taking a swing at a ball: The Athletics picked up one of the more versatile players on the trade market when they acquired Starling Marte from the Marlins. (Wilfredo Lee/Associated Press) © Provided by The LA Times The Athletics picked up one of the more versatile players on the trade market when they acquired Starling Marte from the Marlins. (Wilfredo Lee/Associated Press)

Trade season is in full swing, and the rumor mill is heating up. With the trade deadline on Friday at 1 p.m. Pacific time, The Times is keeping track of everything that goes on right here. We'll update this page regularly through the deadline as more moves happen, so check back regularly.

July 30

Twins trade left-handed pitcher J.A. Happ to Cardinals for left-handed pitcher Evan Sisk and right-handed pitcher John Gant

Analysis: Happ has struggled this year but could be a capable veteran on the Cardinals' pitching staff. Gant can start or come out of the bullpen and is in the midst of a solid season, putting up a 3.42 ERA in St. Louis, while Sisk is a prospect. The last-place Twins did a good job getting younger here while only giving up a 38-year old in Happ.

Cubs trade second baseman Javy Baez and right-handed pitcher Trevor Williams to Mets for centerfielder Pete Crow-Armstrong

Analysis: The Mets now boast one of the best middle infield combinations in baseball in Baez and Francisco Lindor. This should boost a lineup that's struggled at times this year — Baez can hit for power, though his .775 OPS is down from a few years ago. Williams could be a capable rotation piece as well as the Mets wait for their rotation to get healthy.

Crow-Armstrong was the Mets' 2020 first-round pick (and a Harvard-Westlake product), so they are paying a premium, but with the team leading the NL East, the focus is on winning now.

Cubs trade right-handed pitcher Craig Kimbrel to White Sox for second baseman Nick Madrigal and right-handed pitcher Codi Heuer

Analysis: The White Sox can now boast one of the best bullpens in baseball with Kimbrel and Liam Hendriks pitching the eighth and ninth innings. They're paying a premium in Madrigal, a 24-year old who's hitting over .300 and who the Cubs will see as a long-term piece in their middle infield. Heuer is also young at 24 and has struck out over a batter per inning this year.

Marlins trade right fielder Adam Duvall to Braves for catcher Alex Jackson

Analysis: Despite injuries hampering their lineup, the Braves aren't giving up just yet. They traded for Joc Pederson earlier this month and now add Duvall. It's a bit of a gamble that Duvall's numbers can improve — his OPS is down to .755 from .833 in 2020 — but giving up Jackson, a 25-year old who has struggled in 10 MLB games this year, seems a relatively low price.

Indians trade left fielder Eddie Rosario and cash to Braves for first baseman Pablo Sandoval

Analysis: This looks like Cleveland unloading Rosario's salary. Sandoval is hitting just .178 this year, isn't a particularly capable fielder and it seems logical to ask whether he'll stick in Atlanta.

Tigers trade left-handed pitcher Daniel Norris to Brewers for right-handed pitcher Reese Olson

Analysis: Norris has an inflated ERA this year, but his park-adjusted numbers still look good — he has a 3.78 FIP and 3.54 xFIP — and should help Milwaukee's bullpen. Detroit gets a decent prospect back in Olson. The deal looks to make sense for both sides.

Twins trade right-handed pitcher Jose Berrios to Blue Jays for shortstop/centerfielder Austin Martin and right-handed pitcher Simeon Woods-Richardson

Analysis: The AL East is going to be fun for the next two months with Toronto, New York and Boston all adding pieces. With Scherzer off the market, Berrios was one of the best pitchers left out there. He has a 3.48 ERA and another year of team control after 2021. The Blue Jays paid a premium to get him, though. According to MLB.com's prospect rankings, Martin and Woods-Richardson are two of the five highest-rated players in their system.

Pirates trade left-handed pitcher Braeden Ogle to Phillies for catcher Abraham Gutierrez

Analysis: With everything else going on, these teams swapping minor leaguers will rightly fly under the radar. The only way this would make an impact on the season is if Ogle makes his Major League debut at some point and helps a struggling Phillies bullpen.

Orioles trade right-handed pitcher Shawn Armstrong to Rays for cash

Analysis: While the Yankees add Gallo and Rizzo, the Red Sox reportedly go after Kyle Schwarber and the Blue Jays bolster their rotation, the Rays add ... a 30-year old reliever with an 8.55 ERA? You can't say it isn't on brand. Perhaps Tampa thinks Armstrong's 2020 numbers, when he had a 1.80 ERA in 15 innings of work, are more indicative of what he can do than his struggles over 20 innings in 2021.

July 29

Nationals trade right-handed pitcher Max Scherzer and shortstop Trea Turner to Dodgers for catcher Keibert Ruiz, pitcher Josiah Gray, outfielder Donovan Casey and right-handed pitcher Gerardo Carrillo

Analysis: Off the top, we should note this deal isn't yet official, though The Times's Mike DiGiovanna has confirmed the teams are "very close" to a deal as of Thursday night.

If it does get completed, it's an absolute blockbuster. Scherzer gives the Dodgers another former Cy Young winner in their rotation, since the one they got this offseason looks like he'll be away from the team for the foreseeable future. They also got him right out from under the Padres, who looked to be his destination earlier in the day. Turner is currently on the IL after testing positive for COVID-19 but is an All-Star caliber shortstop. (Exactly what that means for Corey Seager isn't yet clear, but perhaps Turner will play second base).

Washington gets what could be some foundational pieces in return. Ruiz and Gray are the top two prospects in the Dodgers' system according to MLB.com's rankings. Carrillo is 17th on that list, and Casey has an .824 OPS in Double-A.

Nationals trade right-handed pitcher Daniel Hudson to Padres for right-handed pitcher Mason Thompson

Analysis: San Diego falls short of getting Scherzer, but Hudson isn't a bad consolation prize. He'll give an instant boost to the Padres' bullpen and has a 2.20 EREA this year. On the other side, Thompson has already made his Major League debut and could be a good piece for Washington's rebuild.

Cubs trade first baseman Anthony Rizzo to Yankees for pitcher Alexander Vizcaino and outfielder Kevin Alcantara

Analysis: The Yankees seem to be going for it. Rizzo adds another left-handed bat to a lineup that, 24 hours ago, very much lacked left-handed hitting. He'll be an unrestricted free agent after this year, so it's likely just a rental, but at 31 years old, that might be a good thing for the Yankees. On the other side, the Cubs part with one of the players who helped bring home their first title in 108 years. We'll see if they also move Kris Bryant before the deadline.

Rays trade right-handed pitcher Diego Castillo to Mariners for right-handed pitcher JT Chargois and third-baseman Austin Shenton

Analysis: Castillo, who has a 2.72 ERA in 36.1 innings this year, looks like a Kendall Graveman replacement for Seattle. Tampa Bay, in its ever-retooling fashion, gets Chargois, who can help out of their bullpen, along with a prospect in Shenton.

Royals trade left-handed pitcher Danny Duffy and cash to Dodgers for a player to be named later

Analysis: On one hand, it's not a Max Scherzer-level blockbuster. On the other, Duffy has a park-adjusted ERA 83 percent above league average, strikes out 9.6 hitters per nine innings and the Dodgers are in need of rotation help. Duffy is currently out with a strained flexor, making the deal hard to judge — and accounting for the yet-to-be-determined return — but if he's back soon, he could be an important piece for the Dodgers.

Nationals trade left-handed pitcher Brad Hand to Blue Jays for catcher Riley Adams

Analysis: The Nationals make their first of what could be multiple moves, trading Hand for a prospect who has an .858 OPS in Triple-A this year. Hand will bolster Toronto's bullpen — he can close games or slot in as a setup guy for Jordan Romano.

Indians trade second baseman Cesar Hernandez to White Sox for left-handed pitcher Konnor Pilkington

Analysis: The White Sox fill a position of need at second base. Hernandez has a .738 OPS with 18 home runs this year and should be a capable bat. In exchange, they send Cleveland Pilkington, who has a 3.48 ERA in Double-A this year.

July 28

Rangers trade outfielder Joey Gallo and left-handed pitcher Joely Rodriguez to Yankees for right-handed pitcher Glenn Otto, second baseman Ezequiel Duran, shortstop Josh Smith and second baseman/outfielder Trevor Hauver

Analysis: The Yankees desperately needed a left-handed bat. Gallo the most home runs of any left-handed hitter over the last five seasons and now gets to hit into the short porch at Yankee Stadium. He's also a capable outfielder and under contract for next season. The fit is obvious.

Whether the Yankees — who went into Wednesday with a 40.5 percent chance to make the postseason — should be taking a swing like this is another question. They're giving up a haul of prospects and much of July has been one step forward, two steps back in terms of the team's play on the field. That Gallo isn't just a three-month rental, though, is a big factor.

It's also worth noting that the deal is reportedly not final — with medicals and the like pending — so the situation could change in the coming hours.

Diamondbacks trade infielder Eduardo Escobar to Brewers for catcher/outfielder/first baseman Cooper Hummel and third baseman Alberto Ciprian

Analysis: Milwaukee adds Escobar, a switch-hitting bat who got an All-Star nod this season and can hit for power. That should help their chances of making a playoff run. On Arizona's side, the Diamondbacks are currently the worst team in baseball. Offloading a 32-year old for prospects is a self-explanatory move.

Marlins trade right-handed pitcher Yimi Garcia to Astros for outfielder Bryan De La Cruz and right-handed pitcher Austin Pruitt

Analysis: Houston gets a capable relief arm in Garcia, a former Dodger who has struck out nearly a batter per inning this year. Miami gets a Triple-A outfielder who's having a promising season in the Astros' system thus far in De La Cruz, who has an .880 OPS with the Sugar Land Skeeters this year.

Marlins trade center fielder Starling Marte and cash to Athletics for left-handed pitcher Jesus Luzardo

Analysis: Oakland lands Marte, who had been widely expected to be traded, and in him gets a half-season rental who can hit in the middle of the order. Marte is slashing .306/.407/.453 with a 153 OPS+. Luzardo has struggled this season, with a 6.87 ERA in 38 innings, but can strike hitters out and is only 23 years old.

Rockies trade RHP Mychal Givens to Reds for RHP Noah Davis and RHP Case Willams

Analysis: This isn't an especially noteworthy trade, but Givens has been a solid relief pitcher for Colorado this year — a 2.73 ERA playing in Denver is nothing to sneeze at — and could bolster Cincinnati's bullpen. In exchange, the rebuilding Rockies get two minor league relievers.

Yankees trade LHP Justin Wilson and RHP Luis Cessa to Reds for player to be named

Analysis: This looks like a move to set up another one in the coming days for the Yankees. Cessa has been one of the better relief pitchers in a struggling bullpen, but this move gives the Yankees space to operate without going over the luxury tax and two free 40-man roster spots. Expect those to be filled by July 30.

Pirates trade LHP Tyler Anderson to Mariners for catcher Carter Bins and RHP Joaquin Tejada

Analysis: Seattle adds a left-handed starter whose numbers have hovered around league average for most of his career. The rebuilding Pirates add two prospects. This isn't a particularly high-impact trade, but it's easy to see the logic for both teams.

July 27

Mariners trade RHP Kendall Graveman and RHP Rafael Montero to Astros for RHP Joe Smith and third baseman Abraham Toro

Analysis: The Mariners are upset. Perhaps with good reason. Graveman was one of the better pitchers on their staff and a leader in the clubhouse on a team that's currently in the wild-card mix, and it seems that GM Jerry Dipoto just sold him for spare parts. The fallout looks bad, with multiple players telling the Seattle Times that they were upset about the move, which sent Graveman to a division rival.

July 26

Cubs trade LHP Andrew Chafin to A's for RHP Daniel Palencia and right fielder Greg Deichmann

Analysis: The Cubs start their expected yard sale by moving Chafin, a reliever with a 2.06 ERA, for two prospects. He'll bolster an Oakland bullpen that already has four solid arms and a good closer in Lou Trivino.

Pirates trade RHP Clay Holmes to Yankees for third baseman Diego Castillo and second baseman Hoy Park

Analysis: The Yankees are in need of relief pitching, but it's unclear whether Holmes — whose ERA sits at 4.93 and walks per nine at 5.4 — is the answer. Castillo and Park are two infield prospects who might have been lost to the Rule 5 draft had they been kept, so the Yankees could view it as a low cost, but both have potential.

Pirates trade second baseman Adam Frazier and cash to Padres for right fielder Jack Suwinski, RHP Michell Millano and shortstop Tucupita Marcano

Analysis: Frazier was one of two All-Stars for Pittsburgh this year and is currently on a one-year deal after which he'll enter arbitration, so it makes sense that they would move him. The Padres might be getting a rental, but Frazier is slashing .325/.388/.448 and they're trying to win now, so swapping three prospects is justifiable and the deal makes sense for both sides.

July 23

Rays trade LHP Rich Hill to Mets for catcher Matt Dyer and RHP Tommy Hunter

Analysis: The Mets get another arm while they wait for Jacob deGrom, David Peterson, Noah Syndergaard and Carlos Carrasco to get healthy. Tampa Bay stays on brand, moving a solid but older player in exchange for Dyer, a prospect, despite being just two games out of the division lead. What's not to like?

This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.

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