- The 2023 MLB Trade Deadline is Tuesday, Aug. 1 at 6 p.m. ET.
- The Diamondbacks, Orioles, and Rangers will be top buyers on the market.
With the All-Star Game in the rearview mirror and the second half of the 2023 MLB season underway, all attention has turned to the impending trade deadline. For those teams still looking to contend this season, that means it’s time to buy.
Falling on Tuesday, Aug. 1 at 6 p.m. ET, the MLB Trade Deadline marks the last opportunity for teams to acquire any missing links they need to compete in the 2023 postseason. With over half the season behind them, teams are able to assess their rosters before the playoffs and find players to fill holes, all in the hope of seeing their World Series odds skyrocket.
So with the 2023 MLB Trade Deadline just around the corner, who are the top three buying teams to watch?
MLB Trade Deadline 2023: Top 3 Buyers to Watch
For many baseball fans, the Diamondbacks’ success in 2023 appears to have come out of nowhere. Having finished the 2022 season fourth in the NL West with a record of 74-88, Arizona’s performance this year has been an astounding turnaround, and with a playoff berth well within reach, it’s time for the team to buy.
As of July 21, the Diamondbacks are second in the NL West with a record of 54-43. There’s no question they’ve performed well this season, but if they want to play deep into October, securing more pitching help is crucial. Even with Merrill Kelly due to return from the IL next week, Arizona could use another starter, and I expect Shane Bieber (Cleveland Guardians) and Corbin Burnes (Milwaukee Brewers) to be at the top of their wish list.
Since the franchise’s founding in 1998, the Diamondbacks have advanced to the postseason six times and only won one World Series title (2001). This season is looking to be another strong one, and with the right assets secured at the deadline, a long run in October is certainly possible.
After years of selling in July to bolster a mediocre roster for future seasons, the Orioles have burst into contention in 2023 and are now expected to be one of the hottest buyers to watch over the next couple of weeks. As of July 21, Baltimore is leading the AL East with a record of 59-37, so with a playoff berth almost certainly on the horizon, what needs do the Orioles have to fill?
If the Orioles really want to make a run for the World Series this season, they should be in the market for pitching depth before the deadline. The team could use at least one strong starter to add to their rotation, and a relief pitcher or two (especially since the Orioles traded All-Star Jorge López to the Minnesota Twins last season) would round out an already quite fierce roster.
I expect the Orioles to be particularly interested in closers Kyle Hendricks or Jordan Hicks for support in the bullpen. The Chicago Cubs and St. Louis Cardinals are expected to be sellers this month, and Hendricks and Hicks could both help to elevate the Orioles’ chances in the postseason.
Despite an impressive record of 58-39 helping the Rangers establish a firm lead in the AL West, as of July 21, the team’s bullpen ERA is sixth-worst in MLB. Add in the fact that recently-acquired ace Jacob deGrom is out for the rest of the season to recover from Tommy John surgery, and the Rangers need pitching help — quickly.
As they stare down the barrel of their first playoff appearance since 2016, I expect to see the Rangers making aggressive moves over the next few weeks. The Chicago White Sox are likely to hold a fire sale on a range of their top players, and if Dylan Cease or Lucas Giolito are made available, Texas should be making offers. Marcus Stroman from the Cubs would also be a great move, and Kendall Graveman, another White Sox pitcher, would be a top addition to the Rangers’ bullpen.
After six consecutive losing seasons, the Rangers need to go into this trade deadline aggressively. If they manage to fill the holes in their pitching, it’s definitely not off the table for the Rangers to go all the way in 2023.
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