The A’s are said to be shopping Clippard and that he will most likely be out of Oakland before Ben Zobrist and that a deal could even be done as soon as Monday. Clippard has had a good season with the A’s compiling 17 saves with a 2.79 ERA. But most likely he would be used as a setup man for any team who acquires him. I see a few potential fits for Clippard such as the Yankees, Mets, Nationals,Dodgers, and Pirates.
I believe Clippard wouldn’t cost much to acquire possibly a mid-low tier prospect. The best fit I see for Clippard is with the Dodgers which would let them use Clippard as their setup man which could take a bit of pressure off J.P. Howell and just help to balance out their bullpen.
The MLB Non-Waiver Trade Deadline is fast approaching and that means we will see a flurry of trades in the next week. One of those frequently mentioned names is Cole Hamels who just pitched a no hitter against the Chicago Cubs on Saturday although that probably didn’t affect his trade value much because teams already view him as an elite starting pitcher. The Dodgers and Rangers are said to be the front runners but the Dodgers have said they won’t part with top prospects Corey Seager and Julio Urias and for good reason while the Rangers are said to be more willing to part with their prospects. I believe the Phillies will look to acquire three or four good prospects in exchange for Hamels.
If the Rangers were to acquire Hamels I could see a package fronted by the injured catching prospect Jorge Alfaro. The Phillies are said to be really high on him. Alex Gonzalez is another guy who I could see heading to the Phillies in a Hamels deal because he is a starting pitcher who could project to be a number 2 or 3 arm in the Big Leagues. The next piece is a bit tricky to predict however I could see the Rangers throwing in a piece of their big league team in Delino DeShields. DeShields is a player with very limited pop but he can run wild on the bases he has the look of a prototypical leadoff hitter who gets on base a lot and I think he can be comparable to a Dee Gordon type of player in the years to come. This may or may not be enough to intrigue the Phillies but I believe this would be an excellent start for the Rangers in trade talks for Hamels.
Meanwhile the Dodgers are trickier to predict because if they don’t want to move Julio Urias or Corey Seager I view it as a long shot that they will be able to contend for Hamels unless they eat his entire contract and try to get the Phillies to lessen the prospect load by doing that but that’s a long shot because the Phillies aren’t really strapped for cash their looking to add value to their depleted farm system.
But one way or another the Phillies have to trade Cole Hamels now or else they will end up with another Cliff Lee type of situation they held onto him for too long instead of getting value for him when he actually had value. The Phillies but more importantly Amaro cannot afford to get this wrong because if he does he will most certainly not have a job in the Majors in the near future.