5 MLB Teams That Will No Longer Be Deadline Sellers Due to Second Wild Card
With the additional wild card spot in each league, many more teams are buyers instead of sellers in the trade market this season.
In the American League, there are currently nine teams within four games of a wild card spot. In the National League, there are currently five teams within four games and three more within 8.5 games of the second wild card slot.
All of those deficits are not insurmountable by any means and all of those teams likely feel that they could make a push for a playoff spot by adding the right piece to their current rosters.
Here is a look at five teams that will no longer be sellers due to the second wild card spot.
Toronto Blue Jays
As it stands right now, the Toronto Blue Jays are 10 games behind the New York Yankees in the AL East. However, they are still within striking distance of the second wild card spot in the AL, being only four games behind Oakland.
Toronto has already shown their desire to compete this year by trading for left-handed starter J.A. Happ. However, due to many injuries to their pitching staff, the Jays could still use another quality starter.
They have a surplus of offensive players that they could use in a trade to obtain another starter.
Without the addition of that second wild card, the Blue Jays might have been sellers this season.
Boston Red Sox
The Boston Red Sox are in the same boat as the Blue Jays. Ten games back in their division, but only four out in the race for the second wild card spot.
Instead of trying to get rid of some salary like they might have done in the absence of the second wild card, the Red Sox are likely to be players in the market for a quality starting pitcher.
The Red Sox have definitely underperformed in 2012, but still find themselves within striking distance of the playoffs.
The Oakland Athletics are currently the hottest team in baseball, posting a 15-2 record so far in July. They are currently in the lead for the second wild card spot and find themselves only five games out of the AL West divisional lead.
At the beginning of the season, nobody thought the Athletics had a ray of hope to make the playoffs. However, they have shown that they have the pitching to compete with any team.
If Oakland manages to acquire a bat before the trade deadline, they will be a a team to watch in the 2012 playoffs, whether it be through a wild card berth or even a divisional crown.
After years of ineptitude, the Baltimore Orioles finally find themselves in a position to be buyers at the trade deadline. However, they would probably be sellers if it were not for the second wild card slot.
They are currently 7.5 games behind the Yankees in the AL East division, but only 1.5 games away from a wild card spot.
The Orioles will definitely look to upgrade their pitching heading into the final week before the trade deadline.
New York Mets
The New York Mets are one of the teams that are benefiting most from the additional wild card spot in place this season. They are 10.5 games behind the Washington Nationals in the NL East division, but are only six games out of the second wild card spot.
The Mets have been a surprise so far this season, but have struggled as of late, dropping five games in a row. However, they could be active in the trade market with a playoff berth within grasp.
Even if the Mets are active at the deadline, they will look to improve without giving up too much in the way of prospects. They are a young team that will only get better in the future.