The WBC is well underway and has shown some pretty intense games thus far. With that being said, over in the MLB, teams have begun to cut players from their spring training camps.
Here are some ideas I have based on what is being talked about right now around the Hot Stove. The first will be a one year rental of a very good outfielder landing on a team that could use his consistency in CF. For the second, I will be taking a look at a high profile third basemen who may be too much money for his small market ballclub and could find himself with the reigning World Series champions.
Lorenzo Cain to New York Mets
Kansas City Royals receive: RHP Robert Gsellman, OF Brandon Nimmo
New York Mets receive: CF Lorenzo Cain
It's time for the Mets to spend a little more money and acquire a solid legitimate centerfielder. They cannot keep running out Curtis Granderson to center as his range isn't what it used to be. Also Juan Lagares is a great defender but can't hit and the Mets need someone who can do both. Enter Lorenzo Cain.
The Royals used to be perennial contenders year after year however in recent years they have fallen off a bit due to injuries. Therefore they may have a fire sale this season with many of their most talented players becoming free agents after the season. Cain is one of these players who has his contract expire after the season which makes him a perfect candidate for the Mets.
Lorenzo Cain will come with one year remaining on his deal worth $11 million which is not much for a player of his caliber. Because of the fact that he would be a year rental he probably won't cost the Mets too much in terms of prospects assuming they absorb the money that is still owed to Cain. The Mets could probably swing a deal with right-hander Robert Gsellman and outfielder Brandon Nimmo. Gsellman is well known for his ability to spot all of his pitches and his arsenal of pitches. Nimmo played for team Italy in the WBC and was one of their best performers. Scouts have raved about his approach at the plate and his mature demeanor which allows him to grind at bats.
This may sound like a lot to ask for the Mets but it hindsight it's not. The Mets could spare a minor league outfielder in Nimmo to receive a proven veteran who is still young at 31. Also Gsellman who is not as talented as the other pitchers in the Mets' major league rotation. But the Royals should be ecstatic to pick up these two prospects from the Mets.
This could be a win-win deal, if Cain returns to his 2015 All-Star form the Mets would have a few days at the conclusion of the season to be able to talk to him exclusively about a contract. As for the Royals, they could start to build up their next great team.
Evan Longoria to Chicago Cubs
Tampa Bay Rays receive: 3B Jeimer Candelario
Chicago Cubs receive: 3B Evan Longoria
It's time for the Rays to give up one of the faces of their franchise in Evan Longoria. They do not have the money to keep him and compete because of the lack of money in their budget.
To preface this, Longoria will be harder to move because of the $94 million still owed to him through the 2022 season with a team option for the 2023 season. However the Cubs have money and are the reigning World Series champions so they should try to stay on top.
They have great prospects to trade and if they part with infielder Jeimer Candelario, and absorb the money that will be enough to do it. Candelario is the fifth-overall prospect in the Cubs' stacked farm system and the 96th in all of baseball. Scouts can talk for days about his power and if showed with his 13 bombs last season. He is ready to step onto a major league field however is blocked at several spots by the Cubs. Since he would be traded for the Rays' 3B he would have a spot to play at a cheap price for the rebuilding Rays.
This deal makes sense for the Cubs because Longoria would take over the hot corner and that would allow Kris Bryant to take left field for good moving Kyle Schwarber back to catcher. This is good for everyone involved because the Cubs won't have to hold their breath any longer watching Schwarber chase balls down in the gap after his injury last season. Also Longoria would be reunited with his long time skipper with the Rays, Joe Maddon.