Buyers or sellers for the second half of MLB 2022

The second half of the season took place on Thursday, starting an 11-week run to the postseason.

For the top teams in the league, the next week-and-a-half will be an opportunity to strengthen their rosters for the next trip, while those clubs who have had disappointing seasons will be looking to make moves to improve their outlook for the future. The following 22 teams appear to have charted their course for this year’s trade deadline.

Buyers (13): Astros, Blue Jays, Braves, Brewers, Cardinals, Dodgers, Mariners, Mets, Padres, Phillies, Rays, Twins, Yankees

Vendors (9): Angels, Athletics, Cubs, D-backs, Nationals, Pirates, Reds, Royals, Tigers

But what about the groups in the middle?

With six postseason spots in each league this season, it’s harder than ever to identify buyers and sellers. Some executives may choose to do a little bit of both for major league players who have control beyond 2022.

Here’s a look at the eight teams on the bubble now and who could emerge as buyers, sellers or both (listed in order of first-half record).

The giant’s president of baseball operations, Farhan Zaadi, has lamented sales over the years, with the most notable example coming in 2019. The Giants started the season 35-47, leading many to believe free-agent-to-be-certainty. be Madison Bumgarner will be dealt before the trade deadline. San Francisco’s run that has catapulted the club into the wild card picture continues.

The Giants, who entered the final day of July a game over .500, were hanging on to Bumgarner and star pitcher Will Smith, though Zadim made five trades on the deadline — while adding some other bullpen pieces, including 2018 All-Star shortstop Gennett. Next week could very well determine the course Zadie takes this year, as the Giants remain in the wild-card mix despite a significant deficit in the NL West.

Red Sox (48-45)
Boston was 14-22 in mid-May, sparking talk of a massive summer fire sale, including recent free agents JD Martinez and Nathan Eovaldi, not including Xander Bogaerts, who is expected to be released from his contract. Agent at the end of the season. At the end of June, the Red Sox were 43-33, which put them in the top AL Wild Card spot. The fire sale was held.

July reigned the commercial discourse; Boston has lost 12 of 17 games heading into the All-Star break, falling two games behind the Blue Jays for the third and final wild card spot. It’s hard to imagine the Red Sox throwing in the towel with just a couple games left in the days leading up to the deadline, but with Chris Sale out indefinitely following finger surgery, the club’s expected return from the AC isn’t happening right now. Optional.

A good week could prompt Red Sox chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom to explore trades for a starter, reliever and first baseman, while a bad week could mean the end of Bogaerts, Martinez and/or Eovaldi in Boston.

Guardians (46-44)
After a 46-44 first half, Cleveland looked like a team destined to flirt with the .500 mark all season. The good news for the Rangers is that despite their uneven year, they are just two games behind the first-place Twins in the AL Central and 2 1/2 games out of the wild card spot.

Most of the roster is under control beyond 2022, though Amed Rosario — who is arbitration eligible next summer — could be moved to bring in a starting pitcher or possibly a catcher. No matter what next week looks like, it doesn’t look like Cleveland’s front office will be able to make any huge moves one way or the other, allowing the current team to have a shot at hitting the ticket until October.

Orioles (46-46)
Baltimore plays in one of the toughest divisions in the game and was projected by many to be a 100-loss team before the season, so it’s incredibly impressive that the Orioles are on this list. With a 27-37 record in mid-June, there was little reason to think incoming free agent Trey Mancini would be on the roster before Aug. 2, as would Anthony Santander and Jorge Lopez (each with two more years of arbitration). Be on the trade block.

Since then, the Orioles are 19-9 (including a 10-game winning streak), returning their record to .500 to put them in the AL Wild Card mix, just 3 1/2 games out of last place. It seems unlikely that Orioles executive VP and GM Mike Elias will deal with any of the team’s capital for short-term relief, but that doesn’t mean the Orioles will be sellers. Baltimore could make moves for controlling assets in 2023 and beyond, though the idea of ​​trading fan favorites Mancini, Santander and/or Lopez feels unlikely given the euphoria the team’s recent run has generated with fans.

White Sox (46-46)
The White Sox have been the picture of mediocrity for most of the season, never falling below .500 in five games and never moving past four games. Chicago is 6 1/2 games out of first place in the AL Central, but the division’s mediocrity has kept a White Sox team that entered the year with high hopes in the postseason mix.

The rotation ranks ninth in the AL in ERA and the bullpen ranks 10th. The damage? He ranks ninth in OPS and 11th in home runs. Chicago enters the break just three games out of first place and 3 1/2 out of the wild card, which should keep the Sox from selling — not that they have too many expiring contracts to move. The farm system entered the season at No. 30 on the MLB pipeline, which did not include a single White Sox prospect on the top 100 list. For better or worse, it looks like Chicago’s roster won’t change all that much, although the Sox will try to add a left-handed bat and a left-handed reliever if possible.

Marlins (43-48)
The Marlins, the first of three sub-.500 teams on this list, opened the season with a winless April (12-8) before hitting the ice in May (7-19). Miami was more than 500 games from June 1 through the break, leaving the Marlins 5 1/2 games out of the final NL wild card spot.

If Kim Ng decides to sell, she should have countless teams call up players like Jesús Aguilar (2023 common option), Anthony Bass (2023 club option) and Garrett Cooper (arbitration-eligible in 2023). The Marlins have the sixth-best farm system in the MLB pipeline in the playoffs, with six prospects in the top 100. Four of the top 6 are pitchers, so if another club were to beat Miami, it would provide a controllable arm like Pablo. Lopez, the Marlins might consider it.

Rockies (43-50)
A good start out of the gate had the Rockies hoping to contend for the postseason despite losing Trevor Story last season, but May (10-17) and June (11-17) left them 10 games under .500. And he can think about next season.

Colorado opened July with 10 of 17 games before the break, including a five-game winning streak last week. The Rockies remain on the fringes of the wild card race (6 1/2 games after the break), though their 62-62 run differential is the worst in the league through 7 1/2 games of the wild card. Place. Players like Jose Iglesias, Chad Kuhl if Colorado sells. Daniel Bard and Alex Colome — all upcoming free agents — could be available.

Rangers (41-49)
Texas entered the break 7 1/2 games out of a wild-card spot, but unlike the Rockies, the Rangers’ minus-1 run margin suggests they should be better, 41-49. After signing Corey Seager, Marcus Semien and Jon Gray this offseason, the Rangers had hopes of competing for a postseason berth, and considering most of the club’s roster was held over this offseason, Texas felt “stuck.” Like the current group.

If the Rangers move closer to a playoff spot between now and the deadline, the club could look to make a pitching upgrade or two to both the rotation and bullpen. Texas was ranked as the No. 9 farm system in the league before the season by MLB Pipeline, although it would be scary to see the Rangers move any of their top prospects unless they land a controlling starter like Luis Castillo or Frankie. Montas

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