The Orioles have until July 31 to get the best deal they can for Manny Machado. They may find the best trade weeks before then, though, because a couple more weeks of Machado could be worth something more to a prospective team that really needs his services. According to a Friday morning Jon Heyman report, the Orioles have recognized this, are asking for best offers soon, and could possibly deal Machado as early as next week.
This is information that lines up with what other reporters have been writing about the Orioles recently. That includes an assessment by ESPN’s Buster Olney this week, who tweeted that rival evaluators dealing with Orioles in trade talks are finding them “much more focused, organized, aggressive, engaged.”
An obvious question presents itself about why the O’s are only now striking teams as being more focused. What were they bumbling around doing before? It’s an important problem to solve for the future to keep them from being that way again, but as far as the Machado trade talks and others that could be dealt this month go, the most important thing is that they don’t appear to be screwing this up with indecisiveness... so far.
Heyman’s report also added another team to the trade mix: The Brewers. A quick glance at their team stat line explains their potential interest right away. The player who’s appeared the most at shortstop for the Brewers is 23-year-old Oswaldo Arcia, who has batted .197/.231/.251 so far this season, earning a minor league demotion.
The Brewers dipped into the jabroni pool for a stopgap solution of Brad Miller. As they try to hold off the Cubs for the NL Central title, they could use a better answer than that, so perhaps they will stay involved as the Machado talks move towards a conclusion.
Whether the Brewers and Orioles can match up probably depends on who the O’s demand and who the Brewers deem untouchable. They have two prospects in MLB Pipeline’s current top 100, and below that, many of their second-tier prospects are outfielders. The Orioles also have a number of second-tier outfielders.
A pre-All-Star break trade of Machado would be surprising indeed. Is the GM who was popping off earlier in the year about whether the team could trade Machado if he was having an MVP season going to turn around and deal the lone Orioles All-Star representative before the game happens? If he can get more or better prospects by doing so sooner, hopefully the answer to that question is yes.