2019 MLB Trade Deadline Preview: Which Players Will be on the Move? (Betting For The Cycle)

With Major League Baseball’s 2019 Trade Deadline just one week away, this week’s edition of “Betting For The Cycle” is all about players on the trading block. We’ve taken a look at some of the biggest names that keep popping up on the rumor mill and picked a handful to discuss whether or not we believe they’ll be traded by the July 31st deadline. Instead of the typical four picks per week, Drew Goldfarb, Taylor Smith, and Jim Beviglia are making four picks for the American League and four picks for the National League, with two cycles up for grabs!

In the American League, Marcus Stroman of the Toronto Blue Jays has posted odds on whether or not he’ll be traded. Bovada lists him at -500 for being traded and +350 for not being traded. Fellow AL pitcher Trevor Bauer’s name has been connected to trade rumors for a little while now. However, with the Cleveland Indians now battling for the AL Central division crown and holding a Wild Card spot, would they still consider dealing a key pitcher?

As for hitters, two outfielders on the block caught our attention. Nick Castellanos has made it clear that he’s unhappy playing in Detroit, and the Tigers are sitting in the cellar of the American League. So, will they trade him before July 31st, especially when Castellanos is set to become an unrestricted free agent at the end of the 2019 season? The Texas Rangers are a .500 team as of this writing (with a 50-50 record through 100 games). While they’re not too far back of a Wild Card spot, there are five teams ahead of them in that battle (not counting the three American League division leaders). Hunter Pence will be a free agent this offseason and turns 37 years old early in 2020, so he’s a prime candidate for a deadline deal. But will the Rangers move him?

In the National League, two teams might have an ace on their trading block. In San Francisco, the Giants aren’t out of playoff contention just yet. Despite being only two games out of the second Wild Card spot, just like the Rangers, the Giants have five teams ahead of them in that chase (not counting the three National League division leaders). Madison Bumgarner is making just $12 million this season and will be due a big raise this winter. As an unrestricted free agent, there’s no guarantee that the Giants will be able to bring him back (or that a team trading for him would be getting anything beyond a rental). So, how are the chances that he finds a new team by the end of the month?

Meanwhile, the New York Mets are the second-worst team in the National League (as of this writing), ahead of only the Miami Marlins. While it seems likely that the Metropolitans will trade away at least one of Zack Wheeler and Jason Vargas (and very possibly both), another name that continues to make the rounds is Noah Syndergaard. The pitcher known as “Thor” will need a new contract this winter but is still covered by arbitration rules. Because of this, there’s no real rush to move him if the Mets intend to send Syndergaard out of Queens. But will that stop New York’s National League team?

We round out our four NL players with a pair of outfielders. Yasiel Puig signed a one-year deal with the Cincinnati Reds before this season, and he will be an unrestricted free agent yet again this offseason. He’s taken significant steps as a member of the Reds, but might Cincinnati trade him at the deadline?

The San Diego Padres might be in last place in the NL West, but they’re still just five games out of a Wild Card spot. With four outfielders sharing three starting spots, could the Padres be looking to move one? Our focus turns to Hunter Renfroe, whose name appears on plenty of rumor lists despite the fact that he leads San Diego in home runs this season. What would it take for the Padres to move him and can they get such a deal?

Join Drew Goldfarb, Taylor Smith, and Jim Beviglia for a Trade Deadline edition of “Betting For The Cycle” by watching the video at the top of this page, and check back each week for another series of baseball betting picks.

Drew Goldfarb: @DrewGoldfarbDrew has been covering sports professionally since 2007, covering sports of all kinds in the ACC, SEC, Big 12 and Conference USA. In addition to covering college sports, he also spent two seasons working with the NHL's Florida Panthers as part of their TV broadcast team, as well as reporting and anchoring for AT&T SportsNet and FOX Sports affiliates, CBS Sports Network and ESPNU. Drew has also been active in Fantasy Sports since 2002.