Baltimore Orioles star third baseman Manny Machado isn’t necessarily on the trade market per say, but that doesn’t mean his team isn’t willing to listen to offers.
FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman reported on Thursday that the Orioles have received calls about Machado and are willing to listen to offers, though none are known as of yet.
That being said, he expects the New York Yankees and Philadelphia Phillies to be two of Machado’s largest pursuers over the next year, whether that be on the trade market or in free agency.
Baltimore’s control of Machado ends in 2018 as he is set to go through a third year of arbitration this offseason. As one of the premier third baseman in the majors, the Orioles likely won’t be able to keep up with the larger-market clubs should he get to free agency. There has been no talks or progress in terms of a contract extension for the 25-year-old, who has hit 33 or more home runs in each of the last three seasons.
He is also one of the best-fielding third basemen in the league, if not the best, racking up three Gold Glove Awards in his first five full seasons.
Should talks of an extension continue to lay dormant and the hope of retaining Machado seem dim, Baltimore will likely become far more active on the trade market to make sure they get a proper haul in return for their star.
Third base is one of the few spots within the Yankees’ roster that is in question. Todd Frazier is a free agent while Chase Headley in no way has the position secure in the final year of his contract, especially with a crop of young infielders preparing to challenge for the spot.
The Yankees likely would not trade for Machado, per Heyman, which would ensure they keep those youngsters like Gleyber Torres and Miguel Andujar.
For Philadelphia, Machado would provide an obvious upgrade from Maikel Franco, who batted just .230 last season.