15 Jul, 2017
Teams looking to boost their offense have plenty of options on the trade market.
Need a slugger? The NL East has a few.
Need a catcher? A two-time All-Star could be on the move again.
Veterans, role players, pinch-hitters are all available at the right price before the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline.
The American League should have more buyers because no team is worse than 7 1/2 games behind in the wild-card standings.
Expect more National League teams to sell since only five clubs have a winning record.
Here are 11 hitters who could be switching teams before the end of the month:
Jay Bruce, New York Mets, RF: Bruce is hitting .265 with 23 homers and 59 RBIs and is in the final season of a seven-year, $63 million contract. The Mets acquired Bruce last July and tried to move him in the offseason. The three-time All-Star is a high-priced rental, but he could carry an offense for long stretches when he's hot.
Curtis Granderson, New York Mets, OF: Granderson has rebounded following a poor start and has 13 homers and 37 RBIs along with a .232 average. He's also a free agent after the season. Granderson has plenty of postseason experience and is an excellent clubhouse presence.
Lucas Duda, New York Mets, 1B: Like Bruce and Granderson, Duda is a free agent after the season and the Mets aren't going anywhere. Duda has 14 homers and 30 RBIs. He's a career .246 hitter.
Andrew McCutchen, Pittsburgh Pirates, OF: McCutchen has bounced back nicely after a subpar year and is hitting .295 with 17 homers and 50 RBIs. He's in the final season of a six-year, $51.5 million contract, though the Pirates hold a $14.5 million option for next season. He's only 30 and could anchor the middle of a team's lineup.
Tommy Joseph, Philadelphia Phillies, 1B: Joseph has 15 homers and 43 RBIs in 298 at-bats, a year after hitting 21 homers in 315 at-bats. Joseph is only 25, so interested teams could look at him as a first baseman for the future. He's available because the rebuilding Phillies have big-time slugger Rhys Hoskins waiting for an opportunity at Triple-A.
Jonathan Lucroy, Texas Rangers, C: Milwaukee tried trading Lucroy twice last July, though he refused a trade to Cleveland before agreeing to move to Texas. His .256 batting average is the lowest since his rookie season in 2010 and he's a free agent after the season, but Texas is right in the mix in the wild-card race.
Zack Cozart, Cincinnati Reds, SS: Cozart is having a career year - .311, nine homers, 35 RBIs - and was an All-Star starter, but he'll be 32 next month and becomes a free agent after the season. Most contending teams don't need a shortstop, but things can change quickly.
J.D. Martinez, Detroit Tigers, RF: Martinez is a costly rental because he'll be a free agent after the season, but the power hitter could improve any lineup down the stretch. He's batting .298 with 14 homers and 32 RBIs in 5 games.
Melky Cabrera, Chicago White Sox, LF: Cabrera is in the final season of a three-year, $42 million contract. He's hitting .283 with 10 homers and 51 RBIs. The White Sox might have to pay some of Cabrera's salary to make a deal.
Daniel Nava, Philadelphia Phillies, OF: Nava has been a pleasant surprise for the Phillies after getting an invitation to spring training as a non-roster player. He's hitting .297 with a .389 OBP in a limited role. Nava won a World Series with Boston in 2013 and the switch-hitter is a valuable bench player.
Yonder Alonso, Oakland A's, 1B: Alonso is having a breakout season - .275, career-high 21 homers, 44 RBIs - and was an All-Star. He's also a free agent after the season.
By ROB MAADDI