Best MLB players available at deadline, by position

There’s no doubt certain MLB teams will be sellers at the trade deadline, but exactly who will be dealt remains unknown.

Some trades can be pointed to as difference makers for the World Series champ. Jake Peavy for the Giants in 2014. Hunter Pence and Marco Scutaro for the same team in 2012.

For the 2013 Red Sox, Peavy was a larger part of something incredibly special, acquired through trade at the deadline, albeit with little fanfare.

We, as is general human tendency, can overlook certain trades, but as seemingly insignificant as they may seem in July, even two innings of clutch pitching or one at bat where the barrel touches the ball’s screws and breaks into left field, can make or break a team’s entire season.

When the Giants moved for Pence in 2012, it was the blockbuster of trade season. Except that wasn’t the general perception.

Pence’s move across the states was a big one, but the Dodgers had also just traded for Josh Beckett, Hanley Ramirez, Adrian Gonzalez, Carl Crawford, Shane Victorino, Joe Blanton, among others.

Los Angeles added five players who were voted into the prior two All-Star games over the course of one week. But the golden ticket turned out to be an old middle infielder and a younger outfielder who had failed to live up to monster expectations.

Turns out the expectations were met, just not nearly in the fashion they were supposed to.

And that’s why, even with the rankings that follow, it’s not always the “best” trade piece. It’s the “right” trade piece.

And I don’t put much stock in chemistry. If a guy loves to play baseball, he’s alright. Don’t be an asshole, and beyond that, do what you do.

But there’s still a difference between the right guy and the best guy. And 2012 is a perfect example, as is what we’ve seen from Peavy.

Some guidelines: Some players here are thought to be injured to some degree. This will affect their value in real life, and I have adjusted. That’s a part of the reason why Scott Kazmir is atop the pitchers’ ranks, even with Johnny Cueto available.

Another important note is that teams who are not clear sellers will not have their players listed here. David Price is the biggest name I speak of there, but it’s not limited to him. Further, if a team is in contention, there may still be players which they have reportedly been shopping to gain something in return.

With that preface, here are the 2015 SFBay.ca MLB trade deadline rankings:

Starting Pitcher

  1. Scott Kazmir, Oakland
  2. Yovani Gallardo, Texas
  3. Jorge De La Rosa, Colorado
  4. Johnny Cueto, Cincinatti
  5. Cole Hamels, Philadelphia

Honorable mention: Yordano Ventura, Jesse Chavez, Mike Fiers, Kyle Lohse.

Relief Pitcher

  1. Aroldis Chapman, Cincinatti
  2. John Axford, Colorado
  3. Tyler Clippard, Oakland
  4. Jim Johnson, Atlanta
  5. Jonathan Papelbon, Philadelphia

Honorable mention: Joaquin Benoit, Francisco Rodriguez, Jason Motte, Shawn Tolleson, Brett Cecil.

First Base

  1. Joey Votto, Cincinatti
  2. Adam Lind, Milwaukee
  3. Ike Davis, Oakland
  4. Mitch Moreland, Texas
  5. Yonder Alonso, San Diego

Honorable mention:  Adam LaRoche, Justin Smoak, Ben Paulsen

Second base

  1. Ben Zobrist, Oakland
  2. Brandon Phillips, Cincinnati
  3. Martin Prado, Miami
  4. Scooter Gennett, Milwaukee
  5. Jedd Gyorko, San Diego

Third base

  1.  Juan Uribe, Atlanta
  2. Brett Lawrie, Oakland
  3. Adam Rosales, Texas
  4. Max Muncy, Oakland
  5. Alberto Callaspo, Los Angeles Dodgers

Shortstop

None aside from utility player Ben Zobrist, who is listed under second basemen.

Outfielder

  1. Justin Upton, San Diego
  2. Charlie Blackmon, Colorado
  3. Gerardo Parra, Arizona
  4. Carlos Gomez, Milwaukee
  5. Cameron Maybin, Atlanta

Honorable mention: Ryan Braun, Carlos Gonzalez, Ben Revere, Josh Reddick, Adam Eaton, Ryan Raburn

Catcher

  1. Stephen Vogt, Oakland
  2. Matt Wieters, Baltimore
  3. A.J. Pierzynski, Atlanta
  4. Kurt Suzuki, Minnesota
  5. Jarrod Saltalamacchia, Arizona

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