MLB Trade Rumors: Mets Among Teams Calling on Shohei Ohtani

MLB Trade Rumors: Mets Among Teams Calling on Shohei Ohtani

As the baseball trade deadline fast approaches, the question of if—and to which team—Juan Soto will be traded is dominating the rumor mill. But a possibly even bigger blockbuster looms over all trade speculation: Could Shohei Ohtani actually be traded?

This time of year, teams call other teams about virtually every player, even the ones viewed as untouchable. But the dire turn the Angels’ season has taken—they’ve lost 39 of their past 52 games and entered play on Tuesday with the fourth-worst record in the American League—make the idea that a generational talent like Ohtani could actually be shipped off a degree or two less far-fetched than it otherwise would seem.

Which brings us to The Athletic‘s Jim Bowden’s reporting on Tuesday that Mets general manager Billy Eppler has been in contact with the Angels regarding Ohtani. Bowden shared that bit of information in an interview with CBS Sports, adding that while the Angels have made it clear that they have no interest in parting ways with Ohtani, they are still fielding phone calls on the matter.

Eppler was previously the GM for the Angels when the team successfully recruited Ohtani to sign with them in December 2017. Eppler held that role from 2015 to ’20 before being fired after his sixth season. He joined the Mets front office in the same role last November.

Could the reigning AL MVP actually be shipped off this week? Regardless of how unlikely that outcome may be, it won’t prevent teams from trying.

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Check out the latest MLB trade rumors below:

  • On the topic of Soto, there’s been speculation that the Nationals could attach starting pitcher Patrick Corbin in any potential Soto deal in order to shed some (or all) of the left-hander’s salary. But that might not be a priority for Washington, as the team is a ways from competing for a title and has just $62 million on the books for next season. (Ken Rosenthal, The Athletic)
  • Speaking of the Mets, New York has also been discussing a trade with the Cubs for a package involving Willson Contreras and David Robertson. Top prospects  Francisco Alvarez and Brett Baty are believed to be considered “off limits” by New York. (Pat Ragazzo, Inside the Mets)
  • The Cubs are also expected to trade All-Star outfielder Ian Happ in the coming days, as “almost everyone” is interested in acquiring him. (Jeff Passan, ESPN)
  • Further evidence that a trade of Happ appears imminent is the fact that Chicago has not initiated contract talks with him. Happ is set to hit free agency following the 2023 campaign. (Patrick Mooney, The Athletic)
  • As the Red Sox continue their tailspin, numerous players could be on the way out as part of a fire sale, including J.D. Martinez, Nathan Eovaldi, Michael Wacha and Kiké Hernandez. One player not expected to be moved? Shortstop Xander Bogaerts, who has the ability to opt out of his current contract at the end of this season. (Passan, ESPN)
  • The Tigers are open to trading left-hander Tarik Skubal. The 25-year-old is 7-8 with a 3.88 ERA over 19 starts. (Ken Rosenthal, The Athletic)

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