I was talking to a front-office executive last week who was lamenting about the disappointing season of a certain highly regarded prospect in the system. He's the kind of player who could have been the centerpiece of an attractive trade package, but not anymore.
It's important to keep in mind that prospects serve two purposes to the organization. The first, obviously, is to produce at the big league level for the parent team. The second -- and equally important purpose at this time of year -- is to be a means of acquiring big league talent for a playoff run.
With that in mind, here are some players whose clubs wish were currently worth more as valuable pieces in a trade deadline package.
New York Yankees: Manny Banuelos, Dellin Betances
When dumping high-priced players, teams tend to want in return someone who is close to big league ready. Players fitting that profile provide less risk, and they also serve a public relations role by showing the fans what the team got back. The Yankees began the year with two highly regarded pitchers at Triple-A who pretty much represented the sum of their upper-level talent, but both have had disastrous 2012 campaigns.