Alex Rios of the White Sox is one of the top hitters being talked about at the trade deadline. (Lon Horwedel/Icon SMI)
Welcome to SI.com's live blog of the 2013 MLB trade deadline. Jay Jaffe and Cliff Corcoran will be here all afternoon to pass along info, discuss rumors and respond to your questions. Stay with SI.com throughout Wednesday for breaking news of all trades, analysis from our baseball experts and Jay's winners and losers rundown at the end of the day.
CC: Hold everything!
JJ: The trade deadline is officially over. Deals can still be announced as long as they were officially completed before the deadline. And, of course, there's always the waiver trade deadline of Aug. 31.
CC: Joel Sherman says nothing is finalized with the Mariners.
JJ: They're the only ones that can save us.
CC: Remember the Pirates? Remember the White Sox?
JJ: Remember the Maine!
CC: The Rangers "believe" they won't have a deal, per Tim Brown of Yahoo! Sports.
CC: Alex Cobb could be back soon, but who knows in what shape and that keeps Roberto Hernandez in Tampa Bay's rotation.
JJ: Man, I don't understand how you don't get that one done if you need a catcher.
JJ: Interesting: Peter Gammons on MLB Network sees Norris as a potential bullpen guy down the stretch or beyond this year, 95ish FB/SL combo. The O's have shown more willingness than most to move guys back and forth.
CC: Indeed. They made something of Matusz after he inexplicably fell apart. The Sun's Dan Connolly is reporting teenage lefty Josh Hader is in the deal going to the Astros. He's starting in the Sally League right now.
JJ: Haders gonna Hade.
CC: Hader was the Orioles' 10th-best prospect coming into the year, per Baseball Prospectus. He was a 19th round pick but has outperformed that slot by a lot thus far. Could make it as a major league starter at the back of the rotation, though he has a long way to go.
CC:Javier Lopez (per Ken Rosenthal) and Michael Young (per Jayson Stark) are unlikely to be traded. 11th hour tactics? Perhaps.
JJ: <taps microphone> Is this thing on?
CC: Rosenthal updates the Norris situation:
JJ: ESPN's Buster Olney says the Yankees aren't "getting traction" on Michael Young trade talks.
CC: Hoes is a 23-year-old second baseman turned outfielder who has hit .304/.406/.403 in Triple-A this season and had some major league cups of coffee. He profiles as a fourth OF/second-division starter per Baseball Prospectus, which had him as the O's 7th best prospect heading into the season.
JJ: Norris isn't a bad pitcher at all, with club control for a couple of years, but to me, he just adds to the glut of No. 4 starters in that rotation, and as a guy with flyball tendencies in the AL East, his ride could be a bumpy one.
CC: Yeah, he's an upgrade over the O's starter who is struggling most (which seems to be Jason Hammel), but he doesn't radically reshape that rotation at all.
JJ: He misses more bats than any of their other starters, so there's that, but he's not preferable to Chris Tillman, Miguel Gonzalez or Wei-Yen Chen.
CC: Also worth noting that Norris' K/9 is down this year by more than two strikeouts per inning to 6.4 K/9, which is well below average. With the team-controlled years, he has more value than Joe Saunders, their rotation addition of a year ago, but I have less confidence in his making an impact over the remainder of this season than I had in Saunders last year. They didn't give up much to get him though.
CC: Rosenthal tweets something he just announced on MLB Network:
CC: Meanwhile, reader David Rosenberg is very observant:
JJ: Still have to think Bud Norris goes somewhere.
CC: I seem to remember that last year we were waiting for a list of players to be dealt at this point and that list was more impressive than Michael Young, Bud Norris, Dioner Navarro, and Javier Lopez.
JJ: Oh, indeed.
CC: I mean, the Mariners names are intriguing as we mentioned, but there has been very little buzz on them.
CC: Man, if we had to endure all of those Michael Young tweets only to have him stay put I will continue about my day slightly grumpier than I would have otherwise. He may not move the needle much for Yankees fans even if they got him, but he would improve their 2007 phantom team:
JJ:USA Today's Bob Nightengale tweets:
CC: Trumbo is far from an untouchable player, but if the Pirates checked in on Mike Trout, would that be news, too?
CC: ESPN's Jim Bowden tweets about how that went:
JJ: Not that there were any remaining rumors about him but if you were waiting for the nail to be driven into Yovani Gallardo's 2013 trade value, Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel just tweeted that Gallardo is going on the disabled list with tightness in his left hamstring.
JJ: Lots of teams got their shopping done on Monday or Tuesday. MLB Network just flashed a graphic that only one trade is official on July 31 this year, compared to 12 last year, 10 in 2011, 14 in 2010 and 8 in 2009.
CC: I'm guessing we'll get at least three more, all minor.
CC: Rosenthal says the Royals just acquired outfielder Justin Maxwell from the Astros. No word on the return.
JJ: Maxwell's numbers: 2 HR, .241/.311/.387 this year after 18 home runs last year. Royals clearly ALL IN now.
CC: Maxwell's a talented player, but he can't stay healthy, and even if he could, he'd probably be a fourth outfielder on a contender.
JJ: Rosenthal says the Cardinals are "in discussions" with the Cubs for Dioner Navarro. Navarro is hitting .294/.370/.510 and has tied his career high of nine home runs in just 162 PA.
CC:Manny Machado is in the Orioles' lineup so I guess he's not getting traded today.
JJ: A Bud Norris update: Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com tweets, "The O's are 'kinda' in on Bud Norris, the D-backs a 'distant maybe.'" So maybe Arizona isn't done yet.
CC: A "distant maybe" is such a wonderfully useless phrase. "If you make me the sandwich, bring it to me, put it in my mouth and work my jaws with your hands, I might eat it, maybe."
JJ: My sources say you're as likely to use it as a pillow, particularly based on your track record and your currently low SLEEP+
CC: Yadier Molina's DL move is official, by the way, but I haven't seen anything about the Cards chasing a temporary patch at catcher. Inexplicable.
JJ: Stark tweeted earlier that a deal sending Dioner Navarro from the Cubs to the Cardinals was "'possible' but not close."
JJ: Kendrick's getting more expensive, so I can understand the urge to move him.
CC: Kendrick's big salary jump happened this year, but, yes, he's owed $18.85 million over the next two. He's actually a bit underrated overall, but only because he was so overrated upon breaking into the majors (or because he fell so far short of his elite-hitter projection).
JJ: Right, no batting titles.
CC: Whoever hung that on him did him no favors.
JJ: Industry consensus. He's averaged 3.2 WAR/ year from 2009-2013. But at age 29 he's about to hit the point where he's getting expensive and running into the age curve.
CC: Yup, and he doesn't have much room for decline before he's below average.
CC: Aaaaand Rosenthal renders all this moot:
JJ: Jim Bowden of ESPN tweets: "Angels have had a lot of action on Kendrick including: Blue Jays, Royals & Dodgers."
CC: With Grant Green having come over in the Callaspo deal last night, Kendrick is now expendable.
JJ: Still a bit surrpising to see the Angels breaking up the band.
CC: That infield's days were numbered. They should keep Aybar, but putting Green at second and getting something for Kendrick is a nice move, if it happens. Though it would help if 3B prospect Kaleb Cowart wasn't pancaking this year.
CC: I'll say this about Bud Norris: he's no Ian Kennedy. So if Kennedy was dealt for a LOOGY, a minor league reliever, and a third-round pick, what is Norris going to fetch for Houston? Or is Jeff Lunhow going to school Kevin Towers today?
JJ: I'd guess the latter.
CC: He certainly ends up with more than a LOOGY and a couple of lottery tickets
CC: For everyone reading this thinking, okay fine, but what about Bud Norris!:
JJ: Jayson Stark of ESPN says the D-backs will be making Jason Kubel available, but more likely as an August waiver deal. He's having a terrible year (.231/.308/.351), is less than useless on defense and is still owed around $4 million including a buyout for next year.
CC: The Kubel signing was a mistake when they made it and despite his unexpectely productive year last year, remains so.
JJ: Only their stubborn refusal to trade Gerardo Parra saved them, and that only sort of. Here are the Arizona outfielders with SLGs below .415: Ross, Pollock, Kubel, Parra, Eaton. In other words, all of them.
JJ: Here's Ben Badler of Baseball America on Matt Stites, one of the names mentioned in the Kennedy deal:
CC: It's looking like Kennedy-Padres trade is all but done, according to Corey Brock of MLB.com:
CC: This might be the ultimate trade deadline tweet:
JJ: -2.6 WAR over past 2 years. Strategywise, I'd be underbidding the other guy. "We'll give you these pants worn by Ruben Rivera." "We'll give you a towel Carlton Fisk used at Old Timers Day
CC: Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News says that Michael Young is now open to going to the Yankees. I wonder if that could trigger a bidding war between the Yankees and Red Sox, or if that's the entire idea of that bit of info being floated with the Phillies and Red Sox already talking. The idea of a bidding war over the effectively replacement-level Young is a bit much to take, particularly with those two former powerhouses involved.
JJ: Yesterday, when ESPN's Buster Olney said the Marlins were gauging interest in Polanco and Juan Pierrre, I had this question on Twitter:
JJ: From Ken Rosenthal: "Sources: #Yankees not getting far in search for third baseman. #Marlins still expect interest in Polanco, but Yankees cool to idea so far."
CC: There are two hours until the deadline and they're still "expect[ing] interest." That's just kind of sad.
CC: Nick Piecoro has an update on the Kennedy rumors, but don't count out the "mystery team."
JJ: There should be a musical cue that sounds every time somebody mentions MYSTERY TEAM.
JJ: If you're wondering what the Yankees are up to, Joel Sherman of the New York Post has an answer:
JJ: Bob Nightengale of USA Today weighs in on Kennedy:
CC: A move to San Diego would be a good one for Kennedy. He has decent peripherals but an extreme fly-ball rate and a resultingly high home run rate, though most of the homers he has allowed this year have come on the road (three at Petco).
JJ: It would help Kennedy. It seems asinine and short-sighted for Arizona, particularly if they're sending him to a division rival, even one as toothless as the Padres are right now.
CC: Kevin Towers loves building bullpens. It's been his hallmark as GM in both San Diego and Arizona.
JJ: it was his best trick in San Diego, but in going back to the Heath Bell well, he seems to have lost his way.
CC: Kennedy has two years of team control left, is making less than $5 million this year, has the aforementioned solid peripherals and has missed one start due to injury in four seasons as a Diamondback.
JJ: Have to think an Ian Kennedy or Luke Gregerson move is coming given this from Nick Piecoro of AZCentral Sports:
CC: That seems to be the rumor with the most traction right now, though there's not much competition.
JJ:Jeff Passan says Joe Thatcher is likely part of the Diamondbacks' take. Kennedy to SD is definitely heating up:
JJ: I had best clear my fainting couch. It would be quite a coup if the Pirates were to get Byrd given the way Mets have rebuffed all previous interest.
CC: That depends on the return, of course. Byrd isn't a player I have a lot of faith in to continue his hot hitting.
JJ: Not a lot of faith, but I'd rather have him at that salary than Rios at his.
JJ: John Perrotto has some notes regarding the Pirates. They have "next-to-zero" interest in Morneau, no willingness to part with premium prospects for Norris, only second-tier as they did for Wandy Rodriguez, think asking price on Luke Gregerson is too high.
JJ: They've been on Lopez for awhile, with the Indians seemingly their top rival in that department. The Indians just got Rzepczynski, so it would be curious to see them prioritize another lefty.
CC: Of course, Rzepczynski has struggled this year and they got him for almost nothing, so Lopez would still be an upgrade.
CC: Ian Kennedy to the Padres seems to have some momentum with the Diamondbacks targeting relief help, possibly Luke Gregerson and Dale Thayer. Danny Knobler is the latest with this suggestion.
JJ: With Yadier Molina suffering a knee sprain that will likely send him to the DL, the Cardinals are suddenly looking into catchers according to Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. If they look to deal, Dioner Navarro of the Cubs isn't a bad backup for the short term, certainly better than the godawful Miguel Olivo. Meanwhile, Kelly Shoppach opted out of a minor league deal with the Nationals
CC: It will be interesting to see if there's any meaningful change in the performance of the Cardinals' pitching staff with Yadi out. I'm guessing there won't be.
JJ: Oh, i think they would, as he's one of the best at pitch framing, and a beast when it comes to controlling the running game. Incidentally, Shoppach is one of the worst according to the latest Baseball Prospectus pitch-framing leaderboards.
JJ:Mike Berardino of the Pioneer Press says Morneau is somebody the Rangers might be interested in come August if he pulls out of his slump, and the Pirates may still have some interest in a deal that would produce a platoon with Gaby Sanchez, keeping Garrett Jones in rightfield.
JJ: The Diamondbacks fell short on Jake Peavy but even so, CBSSports.com's Jon Heyman reports that they're mulling offers on Ian Kennedy, who's having a lousy season, with a 5.22 ERA. The Padres and Angels are said to be interested. Unless Kennedy threw at GM Kevin Towers' dog (a possibility given that 10-game suspension for that beanbrawl with the Dodgers), I don't really see how that makes sense for Arizona, as he's got two more years under club control. The D-backs would only save about $1.5 million this year by unloading him.
CC: Connolly says the O's are still concerned about Morse's quad, but, yes, those are impact bats for teams with room at LF/1B/DH.
JJ: Or rightfield, though Morse is probably better off in left.
JJ: That Garza update seems insane.
JJ: That's a significant change from their previous reported stance.
CC: Even if Ibanez isn't among them, those are some significant bats in Morse and Morales, at least relative to the dearth previously thought to be available. They're apparently aping the Rangers, about whom this from Ken Rosenthal:
CC: Per Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun, the Orioles are trying to get Mike Morse and Oliver Perez in a combination deal from the Mariners now that they've moved on from Morneau.
JJ: If you had told anyone 2-3 years ago that Oliver Perez would be a more desirable deadline acquisition than Justin Morneau, they'd have laughed you out of town.
CC: Meanwhile, Fox Sports' Jon Morosi has the M's in active discussions regarding both Perez and Tom Wilhelmsen.
JJ: Wihelmsen has 24 saves but a 3.8 UIBB/9 and 6.7 K/9. Those peripherals are pretty mediocre, so I can't imagine he's being sought by the Orioles, who have a low-K closer in Jim Johnson
JJ: MLB.com's Peter Gammons has added the Rangers to the Bud Norris fray. I suspect that would have a ripple effect that would send Alexi Ogando back to the bullpen for Texas (leaving the rotation with Yu Darvish, Derek Holland, Matt Garza, Martin Perez and Norris) and make it easier to part with Joe Nathan in pursuit of a bat. Even so, the market for Nathan doesn't seem to have materialized in the midst of other bullpen moves.
JJ: Unmoved by the likes of Rios and Byrd (who may be immovable at this juncture), the Rangers have inquired about the Blue Jays' Edwin Encarnacion and Jose Bautistaaccording to CBS Sports' Danny Knobler. in all likelihood, the Jays aren't going to trade either.
JJ: Not earth-shaking news but the latest from Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun suggests that the Orioles are done with the idea of adding Minnesota's Justin Morneau due to his salary and flagging production (.393 slugging now). The Twins don't seem to have anybody interested at the moment, with Yahoo! Sports' Tim Brown relaying word that things are "painfully quiet."
JJ: ESPN's Jayson Stark reports that the Giants may be a "dark horse" in the race for Astros pitcher Bud Norris, if indeed it can be called a race.
CC: That would imply that the Giants won't be selling despite now being 13 games below .500 and 11 games out of both the division and wild-card races.
JJ: Maybe. Their rotation is in such sad shape and has so many question marks that simply adding Norris for next year would make some sense.
CC: True. He's actually under team control for two more seasons, albeit at arbitration prices.
JJ: Given Norris' flyball tendency and generally high HR rate (1.1 per nine for his career but just 0.8 per nine this year), he'd have more to gain from a move to AT&T Park than most.
JJ: Picking up on where my morning rundown left off, Fox Sports' Ken Rosenthal has reported that Michael Young would waive his no-trade clause to go to the Red Sox as well as the Rangers. Also, Alex Speier of WEEI is reporting that it's untilityman Brock Holt, not Will Middlebrooks, who is getting called up to replace the traded Jose Iglesias, at least in the short term. Middlebrooks has hit just .250/.306/.427 in 25 games since his demotion and the Sox apparently want to see sustained evidence of an improved approach. He hit just .192/.228/.389 with a 60/9 K/BB ratio in 216 PA for Boston before being demoted.
If the Sox want Young, they'll have to get him today because once the waiver period starts, the Yankees -- so long as they have the worse record -- can block Boston from getting him even if they can't get him to agree to waive the no-trade clause for them.
11:30 a.m. ET
Cliff Corcoran: The team I'm watching most closely today is the Pirates. After two decades of losing and brutal collapses each of the last two years, they look like they finally have their sea legs this season, but they could use help at shortstop and whichever of first base or rightfield Garret Jones isn't playing. It also wouldn't hurt to get a fresher arm in their heavily worked bullpen to replace the injured Jason Grilli. They have a rich farm system, a ton of motivation and a potential match in the White Sox, who are selling, with several alternatives. I'll be shocked if they don't make some sort of move before the deadline strikes.
Jay Jaffe: The big question from where I sit is what the Rangers and Pirates do to boost their offense. Pittsburgh appears out on the White Sox' Alex Rios and focused on a much less expensive acquisition from the Cubs in the form of either Nate Schierholtz or David DeJesus. As for Texas, given the reports of players possibly taking deals with regards to the impending Biogenesis suspensions, there may not be enough of an appeals logjam to get Nelson Cruz through the rest of the season, and it sounds as though Lance Berkman is on his last legs, so the team has to do something. If the Rangers aren't biting on Rios and don't expect to free Marlon Byrd from the Mets, I'm not sure just what that will be.