What Would a Manny Machado Trade Look Like?

Baltimore has had an up and down 2017 and will ultimately find themselves on the outside looking in.  Next season could prove to be a big year for Baltimore if they choose to compete or rebuild.  Bleacher Report currently ranks Baltimore’s farm system 23rd out of the 30 teams.  In addition, they continue to not take advantage of the world market when it comes to signing players from other countries which means their farm system could get worse moving into next season.  When Winter Meetings arrive, Baltimore may feel the pressure to start rebuilding.  They will be forced to sell.  The most notable of players would be Manny Machado.  He will be 26 years old when he enters free agency in 2018.  He is a prized possession and could be just what the O’s need to reboot their system.

Machado was off to a rough start this season.  In the first half he batted .230/.296/.445 with a wRC+ of 91.  His struggles could be attributed to his incredibly unlucky .239 BABIP.  Since then he is hitting .307/.346/.533 with a wRC+ of 127 and a more reasonable .299 BABIP.  Despite the struggles he ranks 10th in MLB in average exit velocity among players with at least 200 balls put in play.  In addition to that, he ranks 5th in average exit velocity against fastballs.  Even when he was not putting up big numbers at the beginning of the year, he was still hitting the ball incredibly hard.  In addition to his bat, he has continued to rank in the top 5 in overall defense over the past 3 seasons.  Overall he is a complete player and worth a load.  We all have known that.  So just how much is he worth?

Any trade for Machado is a huge risk.  He will be a free agent in 2018 and likely receive a large contract averaging upwards of $35 million per year.  Whatever team trades for him will want to have the financial capabilities to afford him long term.  Thus those teams would include the Dodgers, Red Sox, Giants, Cubs, and of course the Yankees.  Dodgers have made it clear by signing Justin Turner that he is going to be their 3rd baseman for the future, Rafael Devers has been impressive for the Red Sox, and the Cubs have KB.  All those teams are likely not going to trade for Machado.  Giants would have to include Beede, Tomlinson, and some other minor pieces in the trade, but could also afford him in free agency.  The last thing they want to do is waste Buster Posey, so they could make a move.  The Giants have a weak farm system themselves, and trading for Machado would only make it worse.  If they fail to sign him to a long term deal, they will have a difficult time digging out of that hole.

The Yankees would make the most sense.  They currently have old Todd Frazier and old Chase Headley manning the hot corner.  They definitely have the prospects to trade.  In the trade they would send Gleyber Torres, Justus Sheffield, and Dillon Tate to Baltimore.  They would be able to sign Machado to a long term contract and make him their 3rd baseman for years to come.

A team that could low key be in the mix is the Houston Astros.  They currently have Bregman at 3rd and he could likely stay there.  Either him or Machado could move to the outfield.  The Astros have not spent a large sum of money since Carlos Lee’s contract in 2007.  They have the money and could be a dark horse in the Machado sweepstakes.  They also have a deep farm system.  They would trade Kyle Tucker, Forrest Whitley, and two other minor prospects for Machado.

According to Baseball Prospectus’s comparable players, he compares most with Ryan Zimmerman in 2009 with an index score of 92.  Assuming similar long term projections, Machado is expected to progress along in his career the way Zimmerman was expected to.  Here is a plot of how Zimmerman actually progressed to what Machado is projected to do:

Machado is the orange line and Zimmerman is the red.  Zimmerman has had his struggles, and Machado will have his as well.  Zimmerman is in the middle of a 6 year $100 million contract averaging about $17 million per year.  Machado is better than Zimmerman in both offense and defense.  Machado is worth the investment for many teams as he will help in a 2018 race and can be signed long term throughout the duration of his prime years.

14 thoughts on “What Would a Manny Machado Trade Look Like?

  1. You are forgetting the Phillies. They have a deep farm system, a ridiculously low payroll for a big market team, and a probable need at third if Maikel Franco continues to underwhelm. They also are looking to contend for the playoffs by 2019. Pursuit of Machado makes complete sense.

    1. I agree. Like you said it depends on how long of a leash they give Franco. I wonder if they would give up Moniak to get Machado. Would be interesting to see. Thank you for checking out statsswipe.

  2. While your logic about the yankees financial capabilities, farm, and need, is spot on, there is NO WAY that Baltimore trades their franchise, and a top 5 player in baseball, who may not even be in his prime yet, to a division rival. Unbelievably (because it definitely won’t happen either, due to a highly overrated GM and awful ownership), I actually think that the mets are a more likely destination for Machado than the yankees.

    1. You need to get over your issues of trading to a division rival. The Yankees check every box: need, top prospect system, and financial ability to sign a long term deal. The Mets are hamstrung financially and have a much inferior minor league system. Plus, is it going to sting any less if Machado signs with the Yankees as a free agent?

  3. I’m starting to wonder with Franco’s lack of playing time to check out JP Crawford, and Crawford’s defensive metrics are higher at 3B than at SS.

    Machado’s best position, even though a GG 3B, is at SS. Could the Phillies trade Franco and Moniak to the Orioles for Machado (and one of Lively, Eflin, Thompson or Pivetta) for just a 1 year rental.

    They can definitely wait to trade Franco til July.
    I believe Cesar Hernandez gets traded this off-season (Angels?)

    I see the Phillies having all the $$$ to outbid AMY MLB club to get Machado in 2019 FA class.

    This could be a very interesting off-season for the Phillies. If they are serious about the big name free agents in 2019, they need to start winning in 2018.

    The plan?
    Sign Cobb and Lynn for the rotation.
    Sign Reed and Shaw for the bullpen.
    Trade Hernandez to the Angels for Skaggs and Bedrosian
    Trade Joseph and Rupp to the White Sox for whatever….
    Trade Galvis and a Pitcher to the Padres for Hand.

    Then in 2019 – You sign Machado and whatever holes are left.

    The Phillies have a lot of players to trade, both MLB proven and/or ready, and a ton of prospects in their system. They can spend $170+ Million and still not even come close to luxury tax area.

    This is the biggest market team with the lowest payroll come 2018. The time is now to get ready for 2019.

  4. This article makes no sense. Giants give up trash and Yankees give 3 prospects better than anything the giants have. Dodgers could move turner to 2nd if they wanted…I’m pretty sure most teams would figure out a way to have him on their roster.
    Nice try.

  5. While the general consensus is the Braves are not a team that can afford to operate with a high payroll; due to, Liberty Media operating the Braves franchise as solely a business that must turn a profit at any cost. With the Braves ownership holding and pulling the strings, and with the Braves current absolutely horrendous TV deal, most people seem to think there is absolutely no way the Braves could afford to trade for and resign Machado.

    While this may in fact be true, before coming to an absolute conclusion, one must first also have to strongly consider the Braves possible 2018 roster. This off-season it would not be a stretch for the Braves to be able to get rid of Kemp, and some of his salary, and then after the 2018 season, Markakis’ salary would also come off the books. After those two, really the only significant salary the Braves will have would belong to Freeman. Teheran would be carrying a very moderate salary, Flowers, a moderate possible salary, Inciarte, a very moderate salary, and none of their arbitration eligible players would carry a significant salary either…

    So, overall, really the Braves would only be carrying one major salary, a couple smaller moderate salaries, and then there roster would be made up of quite a few rookies and minimum salary players..With the Braves looking to compete, I’d tend to think they could pull off a deal to acquire Machado, and be able to afford his new contract extension..

    If an extension could be worked out before hand, then the Braves could offer the Orioles a package consisting of the following players: Christian Pache, Ian Anderson, Max Fried, Rio Ruiz, and Sean Newcomb.

    The Orioles would be getting a young and rising 4-tool CF’er, a top 50 LH pitching prospect in Ian Anderson, a young, ML-ready and highly talented LH starting pitcher in Max Fried, a young, average all-around 3Bman in Rio Ruiz, and a highly talented, ML-ready LH starting pitcher with a high upside in Sean Newcomb…

    Considering the Orioles are only trading away one season of Machado, and a QO future pick, if he were to walk in F.A., I think this would be just about as good of a deal as possible for the Orioles…

    For the Braves, they get their third baseman of the future, and another franchise icon to pair with their eventual core of Freeman, Inciarte, Swanson, Albies, Acuña, and possibly Austin Riley, who would then move to LF, when he is eventually ready either in late 2018 or early to mid 2019.

    That is ALOT to give up from the Braves point of view, but Pache is and will be blocked by Inciarte and Acuna, Anderson is replaceable with Wentz and Wilson performing just as well as Anderson, and losing Newcomb and Fried hurts, but it really kind of helps the Braves with some decisions they would have been forced to make otherwise. Now, the Braves can afford to pitch both Sims and Gohara alongside Teheran, Folty, and either Dickey or another off-season acquisition.

    Either way, trading away both Fried and Newcomb actually helps the Braves sort through their potential logjam of young and talented pitchers…Well, at least until the next wave comes…lol..Which isn’t too far away with up and coming 20 year old’s, Kolby Allard and Mike Soroka. Both are poised beyond their years, and both are primed and ready for AAA, after they just both dominated AA, primarily all while they were only 19 years old!!

  6. Why on Earth would the Yankees give up three big trade chips, only to hope that they can re-sign Machado once he hits free agency? Makes a lot more sense to just let him become a free-agent and then sign him, without sacrificing any of their future prospects.

    It only makes sense to trade for him, if he agrees to an e tension at the time of the trade. Otherwise, no thank you!

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