DETROIT – All signs point towards the Detroit Tigers being sellers at this year’s trade deadline and with that comes plenty of projected trades from MLB insiders.
One of those MLB writers has both Justin Verlander and J.D. Martinez on the move before July 31’s trade deadline. Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports included both Verlander and Martinez in his most recent piece titled “9 trades that make sense at the deadline.”
With the Tigers currently 9 games back of the Indians in the AL Central, Heyman believes the Tigers will unload plenty of stars including Verlander. Heyman writes the Tigers should send Verlander and $20 million to the Cubs in exchange for three pitching prospects that rank in the top 20 for the Cubs — RHP Thomas Hatch, LHP Jose Paulino and RHP Jose Rosario.
“While this may seem like less than a haul (it is that), with Verlander up and down this year the Tigers probably can’t expect to get top of the line guys,” Heyman writes. “Hatch was a third rounder and Rosario throws close to 100 mph, and they’d help replenish the Tigers’ system.”
Heyman also pointed out that a number of teams have shown interest in Verlander’s services, including the Red Sox, Yankees, Astros, Dodgers and of course the Cubs.
Heyman also likes the Dodgers to be a possible trading partner for the Tigers in regards to Martinez. He predicts the Tigers will send Martinez out west in exchange for a pair of right-handed pitching prospects — Dustin May and Josh Sborz.
“Martinez is an impact bat on an expiring contract, so he should draw something pretty significant eventually,” Heyman writes. “The Dodgers don’t love to part with their prospects, but they have a ton of them.”
Sborz is ranked as the Dodgers 15th best prospect, while May is 22nd, according to MLB.com.
Heyman added that Sborz “looked great this spring” but is a reliever.
The Tigers finish up the unofficial first half of the season on Sunday night against the Indians. First pitch is scheduled for 8:05 p.m. Tonight is the final game before the All-Star break.