The Tampa Bay Rays are reportedly open to trading Blake Snell for financial purposes. Here are three teams that make the most sense in acquiring him.
The MLB Hot Stove season has been rather mild thus far. Most of that is attributed to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic that has some teams saving some money due to the lack of fans in attendance, as well as the fact that the league and MLB Players Association are still negotiating the rules for the 2021 season. However, leave it to the Tampa Bay Rays to make a big splash in the rumor mill.
According to MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand, the Rays are open to trading ace pitcher Blake Snell. The reasoning behind this decision is that the Rays are trying to create some financial flexibility due to the loss of revenue caused by the pandemic. While they’re not actively shopping him, there’s no doubt there will be teams interested in his services.
Here are the three teams that Feinsand mentions as potential trade partners with Tampa Bay, and how each option makes sense.
The Atlanta Braves were one victory away from representing the NL in the 2020 World Series, but blew a 3-1 NLCS lead to the Los Angeles Dodgers. Atlanta’s batting was no issue whatsoever, as they were the most productive squad in the entire MLB. Their pitching, on the other hand, was far from perfect.
Mike Soroka was lost earlier in the season after tearing his Achilles tendon in a July start against the New York Mets. Mike Foltynewicz fizzled out in his lone start to the season, resulting in the Braves designating him for assignment. Finally, free-agent acquisition and $18 million man Cole Hamels was a non-factor for Atlanta this season due to a variety of injuries.
The team did add Drew Smyly this offseason on a traditional one-year “prove-it” deal earlier this Hot Stove season. But if the team wants to increase its shot of making the World Series for the first time since 1999, it needs to bolster up the starting rotation. This is a Braves team that’s been interested in acquiring Chicago Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant for the past year, so they’re obviously not hesitant in giving up prospects from their lucrative pipeline. Why not do the same to add Snell?