MLB Business Rumors: The Guardian in Discussion About Sean Murphy; Astros eye Christian Vazquez, others

The 2022 MLB trade deadline is Tuesday (August 2) at 6 p.m. ET, so teams now have less than 36 hours to tailor their needs and improve their rosters for the stretch run. We have already seen some big names settle and there will definitely be more trades on the way.

Here are Monday’s trade deadline rumours.

The Guardians entered Monday with a 52-49 record, giving them 1 1/2 games back for the final American League wild card spot. When questioned by Athletics catcher Shaun Murphy, he discusses at least upgrading the plate. However, according to The Athletic’s Zack Meisel, those talks haven’t progressed much.

CBS Sports ranked Murphy as potentially one of the best players available this summer, noting:

Murphy is in control of the team until the 2025 season, but the A have some reason to move him earlier than needed. For one, they have Shia Langeliers ready and waiting at Triple-A; For another, if you’re going to splurge your roaster to keep costs down, you might go all-out. Whenever A gets serious about moving Murphy, he’s going to be a sought-after commodity. He’s been an above-average hitter through more than 1,000 big-league plate appearances, and his stick seems to have more raw power than he realized in the game: Earlier this season, he hit a top speed of 114 mph. recorded exhaust velocity, a figure that places him in the neighborhood of Mike Trout and Bryce Harper. The kicker is that Murphy doesn’t have to hit as many hits as he has to be a valuable player; He is a formidable defender who grades well in all the most important categories including framing, throwing and staff-handling. Any sort of aggressive price he offers, let alone a good aggressive price for the backstop, makes him a great asset.

Per Meisel, Oakland has claimed that the team is in no hurry to move Murphy because of his remaining years of team control. It remains to be seen whether their stance softens as the deadline approaches.

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Astros interested in Choi, Wazquezhu

The Astros have the safest division lead in baseball. It’s not stopping them from upgrading to first base and catcher. To wit, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reported Sunday that Houston has shown interest in both Rays first baseman G-Man Choi and Red Sox catcher Christian Vazquez.

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After the 2023 season, Choi, a free agent, posted a .257/.355/.415 (125 Ops+) slash line in 75 games. It’s unclear how serious Rey would be about transferring him, given that they are currently the AL’s second wild card team and could use offense.

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Vazquez, a free agent at the end of the season, batted .282/.327/.432 (108 ops+) in his first 84 games of the season. He’s also traditionally been known as an above-average defender, though Statcast’s framing metrics give him a hair on par this season for whatever that’s worth.

The Astros are also known to have been interested in first baseman Josh Bell and Cubs catcher Wilson Contreras, among others.