By: Noah Wright
AP Photo/Alex Brandon
After not trading Bryce Harper at The July 31st Trade Deadline, The Nationals have just placed him, along with second baseman Daniel Murphy on Revocable Trade Waivers. This shows that they are now willing to trade off start Bryce Harper, who after a very hot start to the second half of the season, could be much more heavily sought after. Let's look at a few teams that should be interested in Harper in the next coming days, and up until the deadline.
1.) NY Yankees
The Yankees had lost all-star outfielder Aaron Judge to a hit by pitch, which resulted in a DL placement on July 27th. Since then, The Yankees have been 11-9, including a brutal 4 game sweep by The Red Sox. It’s clear The Yankees are missing Judges bat, and The Yankees could use the current hot bat of Harper. But one question that will arise is what do you do once Judge returns? Do you put Harper, or Judge in the DH role, but then what do you do with Stanton? I highly doubt The Yankees would want to regulate any of the 3 to a bench role, and the only possible thing I could think of them doing is moving Stanton to first base. However that could solve one problem if Stanton does fine at first, or cause another if Stanton does horrible at first. In the end though, The Yankees do have the prospect talent to acquire The National corner outfielder.
2.) Cleveland Indians
The Indians outfield is currently very weak. The only guy in that OF that’s hitting is Michael Brantley, while Greg Allen, Brandon Guyer, Rajai Davis, and Melky Cabrera all struggle. Other options like Lonnie Chisenhall, Leonys Martin, and Tyler Naquin sit on The DL, while young Bradley Zimmer also struggled and was subsequently sent to Triple-A. While they could go with an unconventional option, and acquire an infielder and move Jason Kipnis or Jose Ramirez to the grass since both have seen time there before in their careers, I do not see them doing that, and keeping that as a last resort option. That makes Bryce Harper a great fit for The Indians. Another thing going for The Indians is the fact that they have some prospects. While I do not see them willing to give up a guy like Triston McKenzie for a Bryce Harper that struggled to get the year started, and is a one month rental+postseason, they should have enough higher rated guys in the farm to acquire Harper
3.) Houston Astros
The Astros look to be going deep into the playoffs again, but like The Indians, they also have a weak outfield. Newly extended George Springer is having an ok year, but nothing close to his elite-level season last year. The same can also be said for Josh Reddick and Marwin Gonzalez. Jake Marisnick currently sits on The DL, but he’s always been best used as a late inning defensive replacement, pinch runner, or a bat off the bench. Plus The Astros have players that may not be top 100 guys, but have been performing well in the minors, or are almost MLB ready including Cionel Perez, Josh James, Corbin Martin, Garrett Stubbs, and Rogelio Armenteros.
4.) Oakland A’s
The A’s seem like a weird choice for a landing spot for Harper, but hear me out. The second weakest position that isn’t starting pitching The A’s need to fix is the outfield, and even then, they’ve helped their starters by having a deep bullpen. The A’s have mainly used Mark Canha in center field, with Stephen Piscotty and Matt Joyce making up the corner. Joyce is following 2 very solid seasons up with a down year, and Piscotty and Mark Canha are both having OK, but unimpressive seasons. Since The A’s look to be a potential big time contender this season, they could use that one truly big bat in their line-up. That’s where Harper comes in. Plus even after all the trades The A’s have made, even if they’ve been smaller ones, The A’s still have a good farmy system to trade from. Though they probably won’t give up a player like Jesus Luzardo, A.J. Puk, or Sean Murphy, I could see them making a trade that consists of Franklin Barreto, Jorge Mateo, and/or a higher rated prospect that isn’t a top 100 guy like Kyler Murray, Austin Beck, or Lazaro Armenteros.