Will There Be A Trade Before The Dec 1st Deadline?
Trades are a rarity in this league for some reason. In all of history there have only been 2 of them, and neither one involved the swapping of players, only the swapping of money for a player. This season though, things might change. We're midway through the season and teams are realizing what they are, what they aren't, and what they want to be.... And for the first time - because of the new extended season format - they have time to make a midseason adjustment via a trade.
Only one week remains until the JAL 15 trade deadline on December 1st (next Thursday) at noon. If something is to go down over these next 8 days, here what we believe the 2 most likely scenarios are.....
Rapids trade for backup pitcher
Castle Rock is in a hole, and it's partially because when Ty Johnson injured himself on the first pitch of their last game on the 12th vs the Bison the team just couldn't hang on the scoreboard defensively. Jordan Halverson is the backup, and though he's a great hitter, he's lost a step or two at pitching... And he'll be the first to admit it.
With new rookie Troy Flanagan showing he's a force with the bat, and then Ty Johnson, Jordan Halverson, and Kevin Johnson there as well, the Rapids have arguably the best batting lineup in the league. It can win them a championship. What they need is relief pitching, because at this point (1-2 record, 4th in NC) it's unlikely they can still get the #1 seed and a bye in the playoffs. If the Rapids have to rely on Ty Johnson to soley pitch his way through 3 different 3-game series in the playoffs on a (likely) still semi-injured knee to win a championship, it just ain't happening.
It would hurt a lot, but sacrificing one of the Rapids 3 other players besides Ty to obtain a reliable #2 pitcher might be the best way to go. The team has enough offensive depth to stay on par with everyone else in the league in terms of offensive output if they did so.
Fog clean out the cabinet
Bay Area isn't out of the playoff hunt at 1-2 & 4th in AC, but nobody is really expecting them to make it. Their best player, Lucas Myers, is almost done with his 1-season franchise tag contract and will likely leave for another team after the season, especially if the playoffs are missed. Trading him now might be the best way to go for the Wall family owners. It's expected that eventually they will tap into their own athlete connections in the Kalama/Woodland area (where family is from), so acquiring a veteran player via trade could help break those eventual players into the league. The Fog's other players (Proudfit, Gehring, Uhlenkott) are also some of the best "trade bait" players in the game. Tossing one of them into a trade with Myers could be something that gets a deal done.
Wait, didn't we say "2" most likely scenarios up at the top? Maybe we should have just combined them, because a Fog-Rapids Lucas Myers trade almost seems to fit too perfectly.....