Diamondbacks GM expecting to receive calls at MLB trade deadline
The MLB trade deadline is just around the corner. And no, it’s not the usual July 31 deadline this season.
Instead, teams have until 3 p.m. Arizona time on Aug. 2 to complete deals due to the lockout that caused Opening Day to be pushed back.
But when it comes to the Arizona Diamondbacks, general manager Mike Hazen told Arizona Sports’ Wolf & Luke on Wednesdsay that he isn’t quite sure just how “active” the D-backs are going to be at the deadline.
“I would envision [being] active in terms of what we’re getting thrown at us,” he explained. “Whether or not we’ll pull off trades to the degree that you would call it active — it’s hard to tell. We have heard from numbers of teams about players of interest and we’re just kind of sorting through that now.”
Hazen added now that the 2022 MLB Draft has concluded, teams will resume any prior trade discussions they were having — something the general manager says has become the new norm.
“Everything dies at the draft,” he said. “So everything went dark about four days ago in terms of any conversations we were having with other teams. … It just goes completely dark and everybody just fixates on the draft. I’m sure these conversations will start back up again.”
A few players that the Diamondbacks could be shipping out for the right offer include left field David Peralta, first baseman Christian Walker and starting left-handed pitcher Madison Bumgarner.
Peralta, 34, is in the final year of his contract and will become a free agent at the end of the season. The outfield is also one of Arizona’s most youthful position groups with 22-year-old rookie Alek Thomas in center, 26-year-old Daulton Varsho in right and 21-year-old prospect Corbin Carroll now in Triple-A Reno.
Walker, 32, is in a slightly similar situation, as he will be going into his second year of arbitration if the D-backs can’t reach a deal with their leading home run hitter (22), who the team is reportedly open to trading at the deadline. However, with the wrist injury to Pavin Smith in his second at-bat in Reno, the team is currently without a true backup at 1B.
Bumgarner, 32, has two years and $37 million left on his contract through the 2024 season which includes a modified no-trade clause. But with injuries to starting pitchers Humberto Castellanos and Zach Davies, trading Bumgarner would leave the D-backs with only two starters from their Opening Day rotation in Zac Gallen and Merrill Kelly.
“We’re going to see what we can do to make our organization stronger,” Hazen said. “I don’t really know what that’s going to mean. We’re going to have some decisions to make I’m sure.
“I want to see our Major League team playing a little bit better coming out of the break. I know it was kind of a rough two-week stretch there where we were competitive almost every single night, we were in almost every single game and we lost six by one run. I’d like to see us try to flip the script on that a little bit coming out of the break here.”