With the MLB All-Star Break upon us, the questions surrounding the trade deadline are getting answered.
As the playoff races are shaping out, the buyers are making themselves known.
What kind of impression did Luis Castillo leave in the Bronx on Thursday?
— The Athletic (@TheAthletic) July 15, 2022
While some teams on the outside looking in might look to flip their players for young talent, there are some that are still looking for new pieces to take them over the top.
Here are three teams that need help at this year’s deadline.
3. San Diego Padres
While their rivals in Los Angeles have dominated the NL West, the San Diego Padres are still in contention.
This has been without their star shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr., who has not appeared this season.
Their pitching has saved them, as the staff ranks towards the top of baseball in all major categories.
However, the Padres’ offense has been lacking.
They are below average at the plate, lacking in both OPS and home runs.
While the presumed return of Tatis Jr. will be welcomed, the Padres still need another bat.
The market is heating up too, with the emergence of Juan Soto as a potential trade option.
Padres to make play for Soto but hoping not to trade Tatis but to “pair” the two stars. Why Pads still may make more sense than NY teams. Pricetag huge, just as offer to him from Nats was for record $440M. (Sides differed on if Max $43M salary is relevant)https://t.co/M7IGpCY0b9
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) July 17, 2022
While it may be hard to catch the Dodgers in the divisional race, the Padres will look to make a Wild Card run.
That will all start with a good move at the deadline.
2. Houston Astros
It is hard to say that a team with the third best record in baseball needs to make some moves at the deadline, but the Astros have a couple holes.
Most notably their catching and first base.
Martin Maldonado is a standout defender, and that’s all they expect from him.
However, he causes such a hole in their lineup.
With a name like Wilson Contreras on the market, it wouldn’t be surprising to see the Astros make an offer.
Wilson Contreras makes an athletic play as he cuts down Francisco Lindor at 3rd.
July 16, 2022 pic.twitter.com/rkxb0Cye2S
— MLB Caught Stealing (@MLB_CS) July 17, 2022
At first base, Yuli Gurriel has been below league average -0.1 WAR.
While he has been a core part of the Astros dynasty, it may be time for the team to move on from him.
Josh Bell would be the perfect fit for them, adding a switch hitter into the already strong Astros lineup.
With their pitching already being dominant, the offense is the only question mark the team may have.
However, they could solve all of that with a good trade deadline.
1. Milwaukee Brewers
The Milwaukee Brewers just barely sit in first place for the NL Central, and are in the hunt for a playoff spot.
The team has had minimal offense.
Much of their lineup has struggled all year, especially as former MVP Christian Yelich has not been able to reach the same level.
Now, they are left searching for one or two more bats to deepen their lineup.
While that could come with a big name that may be available, such as a Josh Bell, there are others that they could use to build their lineup.
A versatile bat like Trey Mancini could fit right into their lineup, giving them depth that can play both first and the corner outfield spots.
Solo shot from Trey Mancini! pic.twitter.com/dIXQ5nBhWv
— Talkin’ Baseball (@TalkinBaseball_) July 15, 2022
Andrew Benintendi could be another option, as he would be an instant upgrade in the outfield.
If they want to take the next step, it is going to start on the trade market.