Royals closer Joakim Soria is under contract through 2014 at a rather affordable rate and the Royals haven’t so much as hinted at a desire to move him, but that doesn’t mean we won’t be hearing his name involved in trade rumors over the next few weeks. Crazy season is officially upon us.
With so many teams in contention here in mid-July and all of those teams seeking a reliable reliever, it’s possible that the Royals will get an offer they like.
So, just in case, Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports brings us the six teams on Soria’s no-trade list: Red Sox, Yankees, Phillies, Dodgers, Rockies and Braves.
The Yanks would certainly have interest if Soria were to be made available. So would any of the teams on the list, even the Dodgers. Which is why it’s important to note that Soria also has the power to accept any deal and override that no-trade clause. The 27-year-old boasts a sparkling 2.27 career ERA and 1.02 career WHIP.
The Washington Nationals have acquired outfielder Ryan Raburn from the Chicago White Sox. Raburn had been playing at Triple-A Charlotte. He’ll be assigned to Triple-A Syracuse in the Nats organization. The Nationals will send cash or a player to be named later to the White Sox to complete the deal.
Raburn has yet to play in the majors this season. Last year he hit .220/.309/.404 with nine homers in 113 games for the Colorado Rockies. The year before that he hit an excellent .301/.393/.543 in part time play for the Indians. Over the course of his 11 year career the 36-year-old has hit .253/.317/.436, which breaks down to an OPS+ of exactly 100, which is league average. Primarily an outfielder, Raburn has played every position except shortstop and catcher in his career. He’s even pitched twice.
The Nats plans for him aren’t entirely clear, but depth it depth.
Jon Morosi reports that that the Detroit Tigers will make all veterans available via trade if they’re still under .500 by the end of June.
This was the position they entered the offseason with — everyone is available! — but they ended up gearing up for one more push with the core of veterans they currently employ. It was not a bad move, I don’t think. With the exception of the Indians, the AL Central is mostly down, or at least appeared to be over the winter, with the Royals in decline and the Twins and White Sox seemingly a few years away from contention. The Twins, however, have been fantastic and the Tigers have mostly underachieved.
So we’re back to this. Which veterans the Tigers can reasonably unload, however, is an open question. J.D. Martinez is in his walk year, so while tradable, he may not bring back a big return. Guys like Justin Upton, Justin Verlander and Miguel Cabrera either have very large contracts or no-trade protection.
The end of June is still a while from now, of course, and while the Tigers are under .500, they’re only 4.5 games behind the Twins. But they had better turn it around or else it sounds like the front office is going to turn the page.