The Tampa Bay Rays have been trying to drum up the market for Chris Archer for months.
The Brewers have been there every step of the way, since Archer checks off just about every box David Stearns has been looking for in acquiring a pitcher via trade — young, controllable, and affordable with front of the rotation potential.
Now that we’re just a couple hours away from the trade deadline, it looks like the Brewers’ interest is as intense as ever. But a bidding war seems to be budding, including a strong push by a division rival who hasn’t been connected to Archer before today.
Sources: #Brewers, #Braves, #Pirates all strongly in mix for Archer, with #Dodgers and others potentially lurking. If bidding is indeed as furious as it sounds, the #Rays have played this exactly right, taking it to the last day, trying to extract maximum value.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) July 31, 2018
The Pirates are one of the hottest teams in baseball this month, and appear to be making a real push to try to make a run at the wildcard. They’re currently just 3.5 games back of the last playoff spot in the NL.
The Rays were rumored to be looking for a young outfielder as part of a trade package for Archer. A Brewers offer highlighted by someone like Domingo Santana may make sense, but the value of that may have taken a hit earlier today when the Rays acquired Tommy Pham from the St. Louis Cardinals for prospects.
If there’s a true bidding war happening right now, it will be interesting to see where Stearns draws the line in the sand. To this point, he’s been true to his word on not dealing his top prospects at the deadline, even going back to last year when he wouldn’t give up Lewis Brinson in a deal for Jose Quintana or Sonny Gray.