The five most (potentially) intriguing names on the MLB trade market

With the All-Star break quickly approaching, many MLB teams are trying to figure out whether or not they’ll be buyers or sellers later this month. It’s a tricky game front offices must play, because they don’t want to alienate their fans by suggesting that their club is already out of contention with half the season left to go, but teams also don’t want to miss out on adding a piece for the future because they’re hanging onto a veteran that won’t play a significant role down the line.

That said, I’ve compiled a ranking of the five most intriguing names that either are on the trade market, or could be. Granted, every player outside of guys named Pujols, Jeter and Howard could potentially be on the trade market, but I tried to keep the list to only those names that continue to pop up in the weekly rumor mill, whether their teams have officially those names as available or not.

Two names you won’t find on the list are Dan Haren and Jake Peavy, even though they have been brought up in various trade rumors. The Diamondbacks aren’t going to trade Haren unless some team offers a ridiculous package (as in multiple top prospects) and Peavy’s injury situation has all but killed his trade value. I would be shocked if either player gets dealt this season.

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MLB Trade Rumors: Atkins, Escobar, Haren

– According to ESPN.com’s Buster Olney, the Red Sox might have interest in Rockies third baseman Garrett Atkins after Boston recently placed Mike Lowell on the DL. Colorado is searching for a reliever to help improve their bullpen.

Rumor has it that the Braves’ increasing frustration with the talented, but immature Yunel Escobar could land him on the trade block. Considering he’s only 26 and is batting .293 with seven dingers and 40 RBI, there would certainly be a market for him if Atlanta does eventually make him available.

– Even though some believe that the Mets are still actively searching for offensive help, manger Jerry Manuel told reporters that the club “has enough.”

The Arizona Republic suggests that if the Diamondbacks get a package similar to the one they got when they acquired Dan Haren from Oakland a few years ago, the club could still be willing to move the starting pitcher. A trade seems awfully unlikely though.

– The Mariners have reportedly started discussions with the Padres regarding a trade for third baseman Kevin Kouzmanoff according to FOX Sports.com.

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