Jun 27, 2014; San Diego, CA, USA; Arizona Diamondbacks second baseman Aaron Hill (2) readies during the pitch against the San Diego Padres in the third inning at Petco Park. Mandatory Credit: Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports
The non-waiver trade deadline is almost here, and as we get closer and closer to July 31st, more and more teams are starting to get interested in Diamondbacks players that are on the market.
General Manager Kevin Towers and Tony La Russa have already said that everybody with the expection of Paul Goldschmidt, Miguel Montero, Chris Owings, A.J Pollack, Wade Miley, Patrick Corbin, Archie Bradley, and Braden Shipley are on the market. The Dbacks are also hesitant to trade Brad Ziegler, and Didi Gregorius.
One guy that could get traded, and is generating a lot of buzz from many teams on the market is second basemen Aaron Hill. One team that I haven’t talked about on the Hill rumor front is the Washington Nationals, who are contending for first place in the National League East.
Adam Kilgore, Nationals beat writer for the Washington Post, wrote an interesting article two days ago suggesting that Washington will be exploring many trades before July 31st.
He talked about the possibility of the Nationals trading for Snakes 2B Aaron Hill:
"“Martin Prado and Aaron Hill, both of whom Williams coached with the Arizona Diamondbacks, would fit the Nationals’ needs. An excellent defender and an all-star in 2009, Hill owns a paltry .664 on-base-plus-slugging percentage this season. But he’s also come out of the all-star break hot, going 8 for 19 with a homer and two doubles.”"
"“Prado, who went to the Diamondbacks when they traded Justin Upton to the Braves, is hitting .272/.317/.365. He can play left field, third base and second base and is regarded as a hard-working, team-first player.”"
The only reason the Nationals are rumored to be in the discussion for Hill is because of injuries. Ryan Zimmerman suffered a pretty significant hamstring injury, and the Nationals could choose to trade for a second or third basemen, and have Anthony Rendon play either second or third base
Kilgore suggests that the Nationals could also look at Martin Prado. Nationals Manager Matt Williams coached both those players as the third base coach for Arizona, and Hill and Prado would be great fits. However, the Nats already have Danny Espinosa who plays second. He is a switch hitter, who bats better against lefties.
Hill has been hot as of late. He is 8 for 19 with a homer and and two doubles. Prado also has been hot of late, and his batting average is in the .270’s
Nationals G.M Mike Rizzo, speaking to Kilgore, is reluctant to do anything, even with Zimmerman’s injury:
"“We’ve got a third baseman,” Rizzo said. “We’ve got Zim signed for a long time. We’re not worried about filling Zim’s shoes, which would be almost impossible to fill in a trade scenario, anyways. We like the team we have. We got where we’re at with Danny playing meaningful innings.”"
Prado and Hill’s contracts are going to make trade negoiations tough. Hill will make 12 million the next two seasons, and Prado will make 11 million over that same span. The Dbacks are also reluctant to trade Hill and Prado, but are now more likely to trade Hill accodring to a report by CBS Sports baseball insider Jon Heyman. Hill is hot, and the Dbacks like Prado’s versatility. At this point, Hill is a better option at second than Gregorius, and calling up Jake Lamb right now to play third is bad timing.
Towers and La Russa will listen to offers for Hill, but I don’t think either is going to be traded unless they get a deal that will overwhelm them. Hill and Prado are more likely to be dealt in the offseason.