Sunday, 23 September, 2018

The Baseball Report: All-Star Rosters Announced, Machado Trade Talks Heat Up

Baltimore Orioles shortstop Manny Machado USA TODAY Sports
Cary Erickson | 13 July, 2018, 06:58

Going into his final year before free agency, the Orioles openly shopped him during the offseason, but made a decision to hang on to him with the focus of trying to compete in 2018. And that's why multiple teams are still in on him.

But, at this point, the Cubs can't afford to go all-in on trading for Machado. Why? He entered Sunday's series finale in Minnesota ranked in the top eight in the AL in batting average (.310, eighth), home runs (21, eighth), RBIs (60, sixth) and hits (104, sixth).

Machado is the victor of a Platinum Glover Award as well as a three-time member of the AL All-Star team as a third baseman, but this season moved to shortstop and on Sunday was announced as the AL starter for the All-Star Game, as he beat out the likes of Carlos Correa, Francisco Lindor, Jean Segura and Andrelton Simmons.

The Los Angeles Dodgers have been mentioned as a landing spot for Machado all season. For either team, Machado could be the final piece for them to win the NL West. He'll hit free agency after the season and will certainly command a massive, long-term contract on the open market.

The longer the Orioles wait to trade Machado, the price could come down a bit.

In fact, Rosenthal cited sources saying the Yankees' interest in the player had recently increased, as Baltimore drags out the process in hopes of maximizing its return in a potential package for the pending free agent. It would be safe to assume that Gleyber Torres would be off the table.

Of course, it's nothing new for Machado. The Yankees offense is already No. 2 in the league behind the Boston Red Sox.

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The problem is that they might not have anywhere to put him. Didi Gregorius is coming off a 2017 season in which he set a Yankees franchise record for most home runs by a shortstop. While he's fought through a terrible slump, he still has 15 home runs this year.

A Platinum Glove Award victor and three-time All-Star at third base, Machado moved back to his original position this season.

The New York Yankees pulled off the biggest transaction of the offseason when they traded for Giancarlo Stanton.

But the Yankees could lose out on the dark-horse Brewers that are coming on very strong lately.

Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that the Dodgers and Brewers are the "most serious" suitors of Manny Machado.

With one of the worst pitching staffs in the league, the Brewers could offer Corbin Burnes or Luis Ortiz and an experienced Major Leaguer to provide an immediate contributor to the Orioles' slumping side.