A report from SB Nation’s Chris Cotillo earlier today linked the Kansas City Royals and Blue Jays’ pending free agent Marco Estrada:
Still count the Royals as buyers. Expect them to be in on rental SPs. Two names I've heard linked to them: Jaime Garcia and Marco Estrada.
— Chris Cotillo (@ChrisCotillo) July 19, 2017
Estrada, 34, has struggled in 2017, with a 5.33 ERA in 19 games started for the Blue Jays, after two very successful years at the front of the rotation in Toronto. What has plagued him this season has been a mystery, and numerous attempts to correct various mechanical issues have failed thus far.
After Cotillo’s report, I asked a Blue Jays source to confirm, and although he was not able to confirm the Royals’ interest in Estrada, he was able to say that if the Blue Jays were to trade Estrada this trade deadline, the return would likely be made of players in Advanced-A ball or Double-A.
Additionally, the source pointed out that if the Blue Jays were to trade with the Royals, some players they could be interested in are OF Donnie Dewees, 1B Samir Duenez, RHP Glenn Sparkman (yes, him), or RHP Andres Machado. Dewees, Duenez, and Sparkman are all currently with the AA Northwest Arkansas Naturals, while Machado is with the Wilmington Blue Rocks in Advanced-A. Dewees was ranked Kansas City’s 11th top prospect according to MLB Pipeline, while Duenez came in at 17th on their list.
Although those players may seem like a small return for a player with a track record of success, it is important to keep in mind that Estrada is under control for just two more months, and also the market that the club finds itself in right now. The trade market is relatively weak, and it looks like it will be a buyer’s market in the coming weeks leading up to the deadline. Combine that with Estrada not having much success in 2017, and the Blue Jays won’t necessarily be able to get much of a prospect return in a potential trade for him.
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