With the All Star Break looming, most teams have played half their schedule and with many teams there’s a clear line who the sellers are this year. Just for quick reference here’s a list of teams that are six or more games back of the competition(not including the Rays)
Based on my cutoff, there are 14 teams that are potential sellers come this trade deadline.
Thanks to MLBTR, I can look at a list of potential starting pitchers who are free agents this offseason for these clubs.
Erik Bedard (32)
Bruce Chen (35)
Aaron Cook (33) - $11MM mutual option with a $500K buyout
Kyle Davies (28)
Ryan Dempster (35) - $14MM player option, no buyout
Justin Duchscherer (34)
Jeff Francis (30)
Jon Garland (32) - $8MM club option with a $500K buyout; vests with 190 IP
Aaron Harang (34) - $5MM mutual option with a $500K buyout
Rich Harden (30)
Livan Hernandez (37)
Hiroki Kuroda (37)
Rodrigo Lopez (36)
John Maine (31)
Jason Marquis (33)
Oliver Perez (30) (in AAA, unlikely)
Javier Vazquez (35)
Chien-Ming Wang (32) Chris Young (33)
It's not uncommon for pitchers to be traded with more than half of season left on their contract so for added discussion we can examine 2013 free agents as well.
Scott Baker (31) - $9.25MM club option
Jorge De La Rosa (32) - $11MM player option with a $1MM buyout
R.A. Dickey (38) - $5MM club option with a $300K buyout
Jeremy Guthrie (34)
Francisco Liriano (29)
Brandon McCarthy (29)
Brett Myers (32) - $10MM club option with a $3MM buyout
Carl Pavano (37)
Anibal Sanchez (29)
Carlos Zambrano (32) - $19.25MM player option depending on Zambrano's Cy Young voting placement
under these conditions, I see a total of 23 pitchers who are readily available.
Of course exceptions with some player due to their contract and the club's focus on winning, if I were to examine each ballclub on my sellers list I come up these names.
Looking through the clubs, there aren't any other names that jump out at me as being available. With this list of 26 names we can look at what they have done so far.
|Name||Salary in 2011||K/BB||ERA||GB%||FIP||xFIP||tERA|
|Jorge De La Rosa||$9.5M||2.36||3.51||42.50||3.29||3.60||3.94|
|Rich Harden||$1.5M||2 starts||*||*||*||*||*|
Some of these guys' performances have surprised me so far this year, guys like Sanchez,McCarthy, Baker would be an extreme upgrade over McClellan in the rotation. Danup's pick is having a very solid year that compared well with others on this list such as Marquis and Harang.Some obvious downgrades would include Vazquez, Davies, Lopez, and strangely Ted Lilly.
The current payroll is $109M according to Cots, and with a giant contract that only signing Pujols or Reyes expected in the off-season, next year's payroll is probably going to be around the $120 million dollar threshold. It's unlikely the club would trade for a Wandy Rodriguez or a Carlos Zambrano in my opinion unless they are considering unloading the pitcher in the off-season in a trade.
As it stands, the current rotation will provide around 5-6 more wins over replacement for the rest of the year barring injuries. If someone like Carl Pavano were to step in for the replacement level McClellan, the rotation could see a 1-2 bump in wins. which is a significant amount in a division that's going to be neck-and-neck until the end from what we've seen so far this season.