Top 10 early trade candidates
May, 12, 2014
By Jim Bowden | ESPN Insider
Kim Klement/USA TODAY SportsIn what has become a yearly refrain, David Price should be on the July 31 deadline trading block.The July 31 trade deadline is a little less than three months away. While every team is focused primarily on the draft right now, they’re also realizing that because of the sport’s parity and competitive balance, there could be fewer “sellers” at this year’s deadline than perhaps we’ve seen in decades.
In fact, there are just three teams more than 4 games out of the postseason: the Houston Astros, Chicago Cubs and Arizona Diamondbacks.
I expect that group of teams to grow between now and the middle of July, but it will be no larger than more than seven or eight teams. With so few sellers expected, the asking prices for top talent will be exorbitant.
Here is my early list of 10 trade candidates to watch:
1. David Price | LHP | Tampa Bay Rays
The Rays are hoping to be in a pennant race come the end of July, but after the season-ending injury to Matt Moore and a below .500 start, Price will have to be considered the early most sought after trade candidate in baseball. General manager Andrew Friedman knows that he’ll get more value for Price at the July trade deadline than he will in the offseason with only one year left on Price’s contract.
Further hurting Friedman's leverage is the fact that Price is off to a slow start, and he'll be hoping to get a haul similar to the one he received for James Shields prior to the 2013 season.