Not even the holidays can completely halt MLB trade talk.

The offseason doesn’t shut down, but don’t expect another flurry of deals before New Year’s Day. After all, general managers are actual people with families, so landing that left-handed reliever can probably wait a week. 

After all the action that has already went down, the final week of 2014 is a good time to cool down and refresh on the latest buzz permeating the league. Even if none of these deals are imminent, they’re not going anywhere once the calendar turns to 2015.


Troy Tulowitzki to the New York…Yankees?

Last week, CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman wrote about the New York Mets and Colorado Rockies resuming trade talks for star shortstop Troy Tulowitzki.

Not one to be outdone by their younger brother in Queens, the New York Yankees have now joined the fray as well, per Heyman‘s latest update:

Tulowitzki, who attended a Yankees game and sat in a box seat to watch his idol Derek Jeter play in his final season last summer, is said to love the idea of going to the Bronx, though the Yankees’ need to replace Jeter was lessened with their trade for defensive whiz Didi Gregorius, who is expected to at least platoon at short for the Yankees. The Yankees re-checked late last week on Tulo’s availability, and while there is significant question whether they could even match up with the Rockies, their trade for the hard-throwing Nate Eovaldi could possibly give them a slightly better chance.

The Yankees replacing Jeter with baseball’s best shortstop standing makes sense on paper, but good luck creating a deserving package. While the Mets can dangle top pitching prospect Noah Syndergaard, the Yankees don’t possess a blue-chip youngster or deep farm system.

Luis Severino would probably have to move, but the 20-year-old only made six Double-A starts after opening 2014 in Single-A. Syndergaard could pitch for the Rockies in April, but Severino still needs a couple years of seasoning.

This amounts to no more than the Bronx Bombers doing their due diligence. Their chances are even slimmer than the Mets’ shot, which isn’t great either. Heyman‘s new report also mentioned “a major gap to bridge in negotiations” with Colorado asking for Zack Wheeler.

Don’t expect Tulowitzki to play in the Big Apple next year.


Baltimore Eyeing San Diego Outfielders

After losing Nelson Cruz and Nick Markakis in free agency, the Baltimore Orioles are searching for outfield reinforcements. Meanwhile, the San Diego Padres are swimming in them after acquiring Matt Kemp, Justin Upton and Wil Myers.

Perhaps an introduction is in order. According to The Baltimore Sun‘s Eduardo A. Encina, the two sides noticed the sensible trade scenario.

According to sources, dialogue continues between the Orioles and the San Diego Padres, who have a surplus of outfielders after acquiring Matt Kemp, Wil Myers and Justin Upton this month. 

The Padres need to move some outfielders, and left-handed hitters Seth Smith and Will Venable are drawing the most interest from the Orioles.

On the same day this rumored transaction surfaced,’s Roch Kubatko reported the Orioles reaching an agreement with Delmon Young.

Young, however, should not offset Baltimore’s desire to attain Smith or Venable. If anything, it amplifies the need to complete a symbiotic platoon. While the former No. 1 overall pick hit both sides well last season, Young sports a career .302/.338/.467 slash line versus lefties.

Smith and Venable, both lefties, fare much better against right-handed pitching.

He’ll never hit for a high average, but Venable‘s speed and pop makes him a worthwhile get, especially if he maintains his .758 career OPS away from Petco Park. Coming off a career year, Smith proved the Padres’ most prolific batter with an .807 OPS through 521 plate appearances last season.

Neither can combine with Young to replicate Cruz’s 40 home runs, but the platoon would provide serviceable production for the defending American League East champions while giving the Padres added depth elsewhere.


Dan Haren Wants Out of Miami

Certainly no longer a top-level arm, Dan Haren can still fill out a rotation. He’s made 30 starts in each of the past 10 seasons, posting stellar strikeout-to-walk rates despite his fly-ball woes.

The 34-year-old would do well inside Marlins Park, but he has no desire to pitch away from the West Coast. Heyman said the veteran, recently traded from the Los Angeles Dodgers, wants to get dealt back near the area. 

Last month, Haren told’s Mark Saxon that he doesn’t want to pitch outside of California: “My signing with the Dodgers last year and my decision to exercise my player option were based on my desire to play in Southern California near my family. I had other opportunities, but at this point in my career, I have no interest in playing in a city away from my family.”

Although hampered by a lack of pitching depth last year, the Los Angeles Angels’ rotation now looks set because of the Marlins. After acquiring Andrew Heaney in the trade that sent Haren to Miami, the Dodgers redirected the top young arm to the Angels for Howie Kendrick.

Now that the Marlins are back in spending mode, the Angels should try to leverage Haren’s desire for an L.A. return by offering them C.J. Wilson. Now that the Marlins care about winning again, they just might be crazy enough to take a 34-year-old with a 4.51 ERA and hefty contract.

The Padres have recently added low-risk, high-reward gambles Josh Johnson and Brandon Morrow to compete for a rotation spot. Haren would strive in Petco, and the Marlins could use Venable as a fourth outfielder. They also, however, can let younger, cheaper arms exploit the park’s dimensions. 

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