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MLB Rumors: 10 Players That Can Be on the Move at the 2022 MLB Trade Deadline

The MLB trade deadline is now just over two months away. Which players could be the move? Ryan Kirksey predicts who's moving.
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MLB Rumors: 10 Players That Can Be on the Move at the 2022 MLB Trade Deadline

The MLB trade deadline is now just over two months away. Now that the first quarter of the season is officially in the books, many teams can begin to see the direction of their team and what they will need to do at the deadline. Will they be buyers or sellers? Today, we will focus on players who are on teams who might trade deadline sellers.

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Frankie Montas (Oakland Athletics)

Before the 2022 season even began, the Oakland Athletics were massive sellers. They gutted the core of the team, sending Matt Olson, Matt Chapman, and Sean Manaea off to other squads in exchange for packages of prospects. Montas has one more year of team control after 2022, but at a salary of $5 million this season, the A's are unlikely to want to pay the raise he will earn after this season. Montas is off to a fantastic start with a 3.55 ERA, 9.77 K/9, and a walk rate (2.31) that is almost the best of his career. Pitching-needy playoff teams like the Mets or Angels might be looking at Montas in a trade.

Luis Castillo and Tyler Mahle (Cincinnati Reds)

Much like Oakland, Cincinnati sold off Jesse Winker, Sonny Gray, Eugenio Suarez, and Tucker Barnhart. They also let Nick Castellanos leave via free agency. The prevailing thought is that if Luis Castillo had been healthy during the offseason, he would have been on the move as well. In his three starts since coming back from injury, Castillo hasn't looked great (4.60 ERA and a career-low K/9), but he still possesses one of the great changeups in the game. The Mets were recently scouting him at one of his starts.

Mahle was just about the worst pitcher in the major during April, putting up a 6.45 ERA in 22 innings. But he has settled down in May, dropping that to 3.92 with 20 strikeouts in 20 innings. Mahle also has one more year under team control in 2023 and makes $5.2 million this season. For a playoff team that needs a fourth starter, a prorated $5 million might look like a drop in the bucket.

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Xander Bogaerts (Boston Red Sox)

Surprise! Would the Boston Red Sox actually sell one of their franchise centerpieces that has been a staple at shortstop since 2013? It's not as crazy as it sounds, actually. Boston is already a full 10 games behind the Yankees in the AL East and they sit fourth in their division with a record under .500. Four teams can not make the playoffs from one division, so they make think hard about trading Bogaerts since no long-term deal was reached on a contract. In addition, they have a replacement ready to go in Trevor Story. Story is playing out of position at second base this season, but he could easily slide over to short with his seven-year contract should Bogearts get shipped for a bunch of young players and prospects.

Josh Bell (Washington Nationals)

As expected, the Nationals are truly abysmal this year. They are 14.5 games out of first place and the slow start for Juan Soto certainly isn't helping matters. Bell is at least providing a little bit of power and an elite on-base percentage this season (.383 so far). With a $10 million expiring deal accompanying him, he would be a very nice first base or DH short-term rental for a team looking to add some pop to their lineup for a stretch run. Don't count out teams like the Brewers or Blue Jays who might be looking to add a piece.

David Price (Los Angeles Dodgers)

David Price has made it clear that he wants to start somewhere as he approaches the twilight of his career. His relief innings this season for the Dodgers have been spectacular, with a 2.57 ERA and a 10.29 K/9 rate. Even when the Dodgers had a pitching spot open up due to the injury to Clayton Kershaw, they decided to rely on Tony Gonsolin and Ryan Pepiot to fill the role instead of Price. That's a clear indication they don't plan to put Price back in the rotation, which means we may see an official request for trade coming soon.

Willie Calhoun (Texas Rangers)

Speaking of an official request for a trade, Calhoun made it very clear to the Texas Rangers that he wants a trade out of Arlington after a demotion sent him back down to AAA. Calhoun told reporters he was going to accept the demotion to be able to "put myself in a position to get traded." He also noted he has wanted a trade for "the last year, year and a half." Considering the 27-year-old outfielder still has two more years of team control after 2022 and makes just $1.3 million this season, it would be an upset if Calhoun was not traded before July 31.

Martin Perez (Texas Rangers)

For as messy as the Calhoun situation is in Texas, they may have struck gold in signing Martin Perez to a one-year, $4,000,000 contract this offseason. Perez has legitimately been one of the best pitchers in baseball this year, posting a 1.64 ERA over 50 innings. He hasn't given up a home run yet this year and his walk rate is the best of his career. With the Rangers already almost eight games out of the division-leading an 18-22 record, it may not take until July 31 for the Rangers to flip Perez for prospects. In a disappointing year for new signee Marcus Semien, it's Perez who is the one everyone is talking about as we head into June.

Kyle Hendricks (Chicago Cubs)

Hendricks' mildly bloated contract is likely the only reason the Chicago Cubs did not trade him before the season started. Slated to make $44 million over the next 2.5 seasons, Hendricks is not showing this year he can be worth close to that amount. Always a pitcher who relied on impeccable command and pitch placement, the wheels have come off this year. Hendricks has the lowest strikeout rate of his eight-year career (6.34 K/9) and the highest walk rate as well (3.08 BB/9). Combined with a career-low 35.7% groundball rate, that's been enough to add up to a career-worst 4.89 ERA. At some point, the Cubs might have to sell 32-year-old Hendricks for pennies on the dollar if he can't right the ship

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Eric Hosmer (San Diego Padres)

It was one thing when Hosmer had four years and $59 million left on his contract and he was playing extremely poorly, but now he is killing it this year with a .320/.383/.456 slash line and has been one of the lynchpins of the Padres' 28-14 start, just a half-game behind the Dodgers. When Fernando Tatis returns, the Padres will have a logjam of 1B/OF bats, so Hosmer might be on the move to secure some pitching with Mike Clevinger and Blake Snell dealing with injuries. They could also be in the market for relievers as their own relief corps has a 3.66 ERA and is fifth in a home run per flyball rate this season.

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Proudest husband and dad you will ever find. When I'm not with my wife and two kids I split my time working in higher ed, grinding DFS and season-long, collecting silver age comics, studying behavioral economics, and drinking coffee. I once played Pat Connaughton in an actual NBA DFS lineup for money. Astros, Rockets, and Texans for life.

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