In an offseason that already features a number of quality free agents, MLB teams could also improve their rosters by trading for elite young stars.

Due to salary restrictions, lack of a fit on the current club or simply high demand from around the league, a few talented players are on the trading block this offseason. Although it will take a big offer for any of them to move, the future production could make any deal worth it.

These players all have the potential to be moved this winter based on the latest buzz from around the league.


Jurickson Profar, 2B, Texas Rangers

While Jurickson Profar did not light up the stat sheets in his first 94 games in the big leagues, it is important to note that he is still only 20 years old. 

The young player came up through the minors as a shortstop, but he was used all over the field for the Rangers last season. He made 29 starts at second base, but he also played shortstop, third base and left field over the course of the year.

Despite this inconsistency, he still showed plenty of potential with six home runs and a .234 batting average in 286 at bats. With his pure skill, he could be an elite middle infielder for years to come.

The problem in Texas is that Ian Kinsler and Elvis Andrus are already on the roster, which leaves no room for Profar. As a result, the youngster could be traded this offseason. According to Jim Bowden of ESPN, the St. Louis Cardinals remain a strong possibility for a deal:

Of the three options, Shelby Miller has proven the most in the majors with a 15-6 record and 3.06 ERA this season. However, Oscar Taveras might have more upside and would fill a hole in the outfield.

Additionally, Richard Durrett of ESPN Dallas speculates that Profar can be used in a trade for pitcher David Price.

Texas does not want to give up Profar for nothing, but it seems clear that he could be had for the right price.


Jason Castro, C, Houston Astros

Although the Astros had a season to forget in 2013, Jason Castro was a lone bright spot. The young player posted a respectable .276 batting average while finishing sixth among MLB catchers with 18 home runs.

It is not surprising that this has brought plenty of attention from teams around the league.

Jon Heyman of CBS Sports reports that a trade is possible:

The Astros are receiving significant interest in star catcher Jason Castro, and once big free agents like Brian McCann and Jarrod Saltalamacchia go off the board, things could possibly intensify.

Castro’s name hasn’t previously come up as a trade possibility, but the Astros have been known to trade players, even young ones. It isn’t certain how serious they are about dealing Castro, who became an All-Star in 2013 for the first time, but Houston is said to like catching prospect Max Stassi very much.

If Houston feels that Max Stassi is capable of taking over at the position, a trade could make sense. While Castro showcased great power and approach at the plate, his value also might never be higher.

On a team that is still a few years away from competing at a high level, the ability to gain more pieces for the future is a good thing.

One possibility for a trade partner is the Colorado Rockies, who are in the market for a catcher. Troy E. Renck of the Denver Post reports that the club made an offer for Carlos Ruiz but was likely priced out by an unknown team.

Castro could be a cheaper option who would be a nice addition to an already strong offense.


Brett Anderson, LHP, Oakland Athletics

After coming into the regular season as the ace of the Athletics’ rotation, Brett Anderson dealt with injuries and struggled to a 6.04 ERA in 44.2 innings. 

A plethora of other pitchers both young and old stepped up in his absence, which has made the 25-year-old player expendable heading into next year. According to Heyman, a deal will depend on another transaction:

Whether Anderson is ultimately traded may depend on whether the A’s are able to re-sign Bartolo Colon. Oakland is aiming to make a one-year deal with Colon, who turned out to be the ace of the 2013 team. Team higher-ups plan to meet with Colon’s agent Adam Katz here at the GM meetings. Meantime, Anderson’s name is being bandied about it.

It would certainly make sense for a team to try to acquire Anderson if he is available for relatively cheap. When healthy, the pitcher has been quite impressive with a career ERA of 3.81. 

Unfortunately, he has made only 43 starts in the past four years combined and is coming off the worst year of his career.

Still, a team willing to take a risk on a young, talented player could receive a great addition if all goes well next season.


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