30 things I’m hearing and watching for on MLB trade deadline with 50 days to go (2024)

Believe it or not, the MLB trade deadline is 50 days away. What can we expect, beyond the unexpected, this year?

I’ve been talking, texting and emailing with front-office executives, as well as others across baseball, to gauge how the trade market is shaping up. Here are 30 things I’m hearing, watching for, or thinking about with 50 days until the July 30 deadline.

1. The best starting pitchers expected to be traded at the deadline are Jesús Luzardo of the Marlins, Luis Severino of the Mets, Tyler Anderson of the Angels, Erick Fedde and Garrett Crochet of the White Sox, Jack Flaherty of the Tigers and Trevor Williams of the Nationals if he’s healthy and pitching well. (Williams is on the injured list with a flexor muscle strain after posting a 2.22 ERA over 11 starts.) However, asking prices are exorbitant for most of them and rightfully so because the market for difference-making starters is so thin.


2. Pete Alonso is expected to be the biggest power bat traded at the deadline. The Astros, Mariners, Yankees, Giants, Cubs and Twins are possible landing spots for the three-time All-Star. If the Mets trade Alonso, they will still make a concerted effort to re-sign him this offseason. They love the Polar Bear, and he loves New York.

3. Other notable hitters who are expected to be moved include the A’s Brent Rooker, the Nationals’ Lane Thomas, the Marlins’ Josh Bell and the Angels’ Taylor Ward. Rooker won’t be eligible for free agency until after the 2027 season.

4. A.J. Preller, the wheeler-dealer president of baseball operations of the Padres, is doing what he always does — trying to make another blockbuster deal to land a difference-making starter such as Jesús Luzardo or Garrett Crochet. The Padres are also trying to fine-tune their bench and add a right-handed reliever.

30 things I’m hearing and watching for on MLB trade deadline with 50 days to go (1)

Jesús Luzardo, 26, is under team control through the 2026 season. (Orlando Ramirez / Getty Images)

5. The sellers in this year’s trade market are expected to include the White Sox, Marlins, Rockies, Mets, Angels and A’s. In addition, there are several teams that could go either way (buying or selling), including the Nationals, Pirates, Cardinals, Rays, Blue Jays, Red Sox and Tigers.

6. The White Sox have no untouchables on their major-league roster. They’re willing to trade all of their best players including outfielders Luis Robert Jr., Eloy Jiménez and Tommy Pham as well as starters Garrett Crochet and Erick Fedde and reliever Michael Kopech. Bottom line: They’re going to have a fire sale and aim to add as many good prospects as they can and make as many trades as possible.

7. The designated hitters most likely to be traded are J.D. Martinez of the Mets and Brent Rooker of the A’s.

8. The best closers expected to be dealt include the Marlins’ Tanner Scott, the Nationals’ Kyle Finnegan and possibly the Cardinals’ Ryan Helsley and the Blue Jays’ Jordan Romano if either of those teams decides to sell.


9. The Pirates feel they’re gaining momentum as rookie starters Paul Skenes and Jared Jones have the front office believing if they can improve the offense, the team could be surprise contenders this year (and if not, for sure next year). They’re searching for offensive upgrades at several positions including the outfield. Don’t expect trades for All-Stars, but they will look to add players who are better than what they’re running out there now.

10. Teams continue to contact the A’s about closer Mason Miller, but Oakland has little interest in moving the 25-year-old unless someone wants to make an outrageous offer and force its hand. Teams such as the Orioles and Dodgers have enough in their farm systems to make that kind of trade, but I’m told it’s still highly unlikely he’ll be dealt. However, teams do believe the A’s could move relievers Austin Adams or Lucas Erceg if in return they could land everyday position-player prospects who are close to the majors.

11. The Cardinals plan on buying at the deadline; acquiring another veteran starting pitcher is their main — and only — current target. However, if things go south, don’t be surprised if they deal veteran first baseman Paul Goldschmidt, who will be a free agent after this season, and closer Ryan Helsley, who would immediately become the best-available closer on the market and could fetch a huge return. In that scenario, Goldschmidt going to the Astros, Mariners or Yankees could make sense, and Helsley heading to the Orioles or Dodgers would be a game-changer for either club. Helsley is under team control through next season.

12. The Yankees will be monitoring the right side of their infield with hopes that first baseman Anthony Rizzo (.624 OPS) and second baseman Gleyber Torres (.640) start providing more offensive production than they have over the first two-plus months of the season. If they don’t, the Yankees will at least consider upgrading there at the deadline. Also, don’t be surprised if New York adds bullpen depth.

13. The Orioles are focused on improving their bullpen but plan on doing it without giving up any of their top four or five prospects. They’re also looking to add a right-handed-hitting fourth outfielder type with Tommy Pham of the White Sox being a possibility. (Pham is expected to have a short stint on the IL after spraining his left ankle about a week ago.)

30 things I’m hearing and watching for on MLB trade deadline with 50 days to go (2)

Tommy Pham, who last year was traded from the Mets to the Diamondbacks, could be on the move again. (Nathan Ray Seebeck / USA Today)

14. The Dodgers are searching for both quality and depth additions for the bullpenas well as an upgrade for the outfield and bottom part of their lineup, which has struggled for most of the year.

15. The Phillies have been the National League’s best team but aren’t resting on their laurels. They’re looking to improve their overall outfield and have interest in Luis Robert Jr. and Tommy Pham. The Phillies and White Sox do match up well on a blockbuster-type deal. Robert is under team control through 2027 on a club-friendly deal. The Phillies are in on outfielder Jake McCarthy of the Diamondbacks as well. It’s believed they could also add a reliever.


16. Three years ago, the Braves lost Ronald Acuña Jr. to a season-ending ACL tear but went on to win the World Series because president of baseball ops Alex Anthopoulos landed four outfielders (Joc Pederson, Jorge Soler, Eddie Rosario, Adam Duvall) at the trade deadline. This year, they lost Acuña to another season-ending ACL tear, this one to his left knee, and will try to follow a similar formula at the deadline. Although Anthopoulos probably won’t get four new outfielders, don’t be surprised if he lands one or two again this year. The Braves are also monitoring the market for a veteran back-of-the-rotation starting pitcher in case none of their young starters step up and adequately fill the fifth spot in the rotation.

17. The Guardians are scouring both leagues for a middle-of-the-rotation type starting pitcher and a corner outfield to lengthen their lineup with more pop.

18. It’s no surprise the Mariners are looking for a corner bat, just as they have the past several years. The M’s have the rotation to go all the way, but know they need to improve their offense if they want to pop Champagne in late October. They also want to add another impact reliever.

19. The Rangers’ best moves aren’t expected to be trades but rather just activating players from the IL. Texas is looking forward to reinstating starters Jacob deGrom, Tyler Mahle, Cody Bradford and Max Scherzer and third baseman Josh Jung from the IL at various points over the next couple of months.

Max Scherzer has yet to pitch this season in the majors.@Ken_Rosenthal has more on the timetable for his return, following a rehabilitation start on Sunday. pic.twitter.com/YtDQvzcV4X

— FOX Sports: MLB (@MLBONFOX) June 11, 2024

20. The Royals want to boost the back end of their bullpen and are also looking for a corner outfield bat. General manager J.J. Picollo has been aggressive early in his search to fill both needs, according to multiple front-office executives.

30 things I’m hearing and watching for on MLB trade deadline with 50 days to go (3)

GM J.J. Picollo and the Royals were active in the offseason and could be aggressive again at the trade deadline. (Colin E. Braley / Associated Press)

21. The Brewers are looking for pitching, pitching and more pitching, including both starting and bullpen depth. They feel their offense and defense are good enough to win the NL Central but that they needpitching reinforcements.

22. The Diamondbacks are monitoring their injured starting pitchers — Zac Gallen (hamstring strain), Eduardo Rodriguez (shoulder strain) and Merrill Kelly (shoulder strain) — and hoping they all return by the trade deadline; however, if one or two don’t get healthy, the D-Backs will weigh trades for another starter. They’re also in the market for bullpen depth.


23. Red Sox chief baseball officer Craig Breslow is searching for more starting pitching and a short-term solution for shortstop.

24. The Cubs are searching for more offensive help at catcher with the Rockies’ Elias Díaz a strong trade possibility. Interestingly, they’ve also touched base with the Mets on Pete Alonso and the Blue Jays on Vladimir Guerrero Jr.

25. The Giants are searching for a long-term answer at shortstop as well as a short-term answer for center field with the loss of Jung Hoo Lee to season-ending shoulder surgery.

26. The Tigers won’t trade Tarik Skubal but they’ll listen on Jack Flaherty, who is having a strong season with Detroit. Flaherty (3.22 ERA, 11.64 strikeouts per nine innings)could bring back a haul.

27. Blue Jays GM Ross Atkins doesn’t think it makes sense to trade shortstop Bo Bichette and/or first baseman Vladimir Guerrero Jr. because he’d much rather sign both to long-term extensions. However, if the Blue Jays can’t do that by the trade deadline, they’d be foolish not to shop both. One rival executive believes a deadline trade involving either one will only happen if Atkins is replaced.

28. The Nationals are holding off on calling up some of their top prospects because they’re hoping to deal several veteran players such as Lane Thomas, Eddie Rosario, Nick Senzel, Joey Gallo, Jesse Winker and Joey Meneses with the idea that if they can, it will allow them to promote prospects in August and September.

29. The Rockies don’t plan to be too aggressive at the trade deadline, which has been their modus operandi for the past several years, but that hasn’t stopped teams from calling about the availability ofcatcher Elias Díaz and third baseman Ryan McMahon. It will be interesting to see if Colorado adjusts that stance this year.

30. It’s possible there won’t be a single managerial change before the trade deadline but the managers on the hottest seats include Pedro Grifol of the White Sox, Bud Black of the Rockies, Oli Marmol of the Cardinals and John Schneider of the Blue Jays. However, each of them has received a vote of confidence from the front office despite their team’s struggles. Can MLB go a full season without a manager getting fired?

GO DEEPERMLB trade deadline tiers: Buyers, sellers and those in between — plus needs for all 30 teamsGO DEEPERBowden: My early All-Star team picks for the American League and National LeagueGO DEEPERThe top 100 potential MLB free agents for 2024-25 offseason — with options galore

(Top image: Dan Goldfarb / The Athletic. Photos: Vaughn Ridley / Getty Images; Brace Hemmelgarn / Minnesota Twins / Getty Images; G Fiume/ Getty Images)

30 things I’m hearing and watching for on MLB trade deadline with 50 days to go (7)30 things I’m hearing and watching for on MLB trade deadline with 50 days to go (8)

Jim Bowden , a national writer for The Athletic MLB, was formerly the Sr. VP and general manager for the Cincinnati Reds and Washington Nationals for a combined 16 years, including being named the 1999 MLB Executive of the Year by Baseball America. He is the lead MLB Analyst and Insider for CBS Sports-HQ and a regular talk-show host on SiriusXM for the MLB Network and Fantasy channels. Follow him on twitter: @JimBowdenGM Follow Jim on Twitter @JimBowdenGM

30 things I’m hearing and watching for on MLB trade deadline with 50 days to go (2024)


How does baseball trading work? ›

If a player has been on an active major league roster for 10 full seasons and on one team for the last five, he may not be traded to another team without his consent (known as the 10 & 5 rule). Additionally, some players negotiate to have no-trade clauses in their contracts that have the same effect.

How does the MLB trade deadline work? ›

The Trade Deadline is the last point during the season at which players can be traded from one club to another. The 2024 Trade Deadline falls on July 30 at 6 p.m. ET. Prior to the most recent CBA, the Trade Deadline almost always fell on July 31 at 4 p.m. ET.

Can MLB trades be made after the deadline? ›

As of 2019, players may still be placed and claimed on outright waivers after the Trade Deadline, but trades aren't permitted after that date. With regards to newly acquired players, the Aug. 31 postseason roster deadline remains in effect.

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